FIGHT! In the third quarter of last night’s game between the Timberwolves and 76ers, Joel Embiid and Karl-Anthony Towns got tangled up, leading to the two players getting into a scuffle on the court. Prior to the matchup, Towns tried to downplay the showdown against Embiid, saying that all he cared about was getting W’s, but after seeing how little it took for the two star big men to get into it tonight, it’s pretty clear there’s some ill will between the duo. Towns and Embiid continued their social-media back-and-forth late into the evening, too.
🥊 The two supersized All-Stars are certainly facing some sort of suspension, and they might not be the only ones; video captured Ben Simmons putting Towns in a chokehold as he tried to “break up the fight”. For those scoring the scuffle at home, Towns did appear to tap, giving Simmons a 1-0 record in his burgeoning fighting career.
Depending on the lengths of their upcoming suspensions, the Wolves might be in a bit more trouble without Towns than the Sixers will be without Embiid. Not only is Towns playing at an MVP level (averaging 25.5 points, 13.3 rebounds and 4.0 assists nightly), Minnesota just doesn’t have the same depth as Philadelphia, who can slide Al Horford to the 5 and place more of the scoring load on Tobias Harris for a few games until Embiid gets back.
WARRIORS TROUBLES CONTINUE: The Towns-Embiid fight wasn’t the only major happening in the NBA last night, as Warriors point guard and two-time MVP Stephen Curry suffered a broken hand during Golden State’s game against the Suns. We don’t have word yet on how long he’ll be out, but considering how poorly the Warriors are doing this season (they’re 1-3 after falling to Phoenix by double digits at home), the team will be in no rush to bring Curry back until he’s fully fit.
ANOTHER INJURY: Pacers big man Myles Turner also went down with what originally looked like an ugly injury, but word has since come out that it’s just an ankle sprain. He was questionable to return to last night’s game prior to sitting out, so it doesn’t appear that he’ll be out too long.
PHEW: Speaking of ankle sprains, Trae Young and the Hawks appear to have dodged a bullet, with reports stating that he may be able to return as early as next week. Great news for one of the league’s most exciting young players.
OFFENSIVE EXPLOSION: Last night in the NBA wasn’t only about ugly fighting and costly injuries. There was also one game that featured an offensive outburst by two teams so massive that some of the statistics don’t even seem real. The Rockets defeated the Wizards on Wednesday by a final score of 159-158. The game ended in regulation, by the way.
🏀 James Harden dropped 59 points, Bradley Beal responded with 46 of his own and the two teams tied the record for the most combined three-pointers (43) in a game ever. Hilariously enough, when asked how the Rockets pulled out the win, Harden had the gall to say it was thanks to their… defense. Yes, he actually said that.
NEW 2020 FREE AGENT: The Cleveland Cavaliers declined their fourth-year option on Croatian center Ante Zizic, making Zizic an unrestricted free agent next summer. Zizic is averaging 6.4 points and 4.2 rebounds thus far through his two seasons in the NBA.
KYRIE RESPONDS: Following the report about Kyrie Irving and his moody temperament already becoming noticeable since joining the Nets, teammates and coaches stood up for their point guard. Now, Irving has responded, too. Well, sort of. Because more than anything, he went into full Kyrie mode, saying a lot of big words that don’t really make any sort of logical sense in the way he’s using them, or address the topic at hand.
Anyway, the Nets lost again last night and are now 1-3 on the young season.
MITCHELL OPENS UP: Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell sat down with The Athletic’s Shams Charania to talk about the pressures of his third season, what it’s like truly being the guy, his new partnership with Mike Conley and much more.
MEET EMONI BATES: Get to know the young prospect that is taking the basketball world by storm, drawing comparisons to Kevin Durant due to his long, thin frame and exquisite shooting touch at 6-foot-9. One college assistant at a major university called Emoni Bates the best player he’s ever seen. Oh, and did we mention he’s all of 15 years old? The kid’s upside is scary.
TOP OF THE TOP: If you’ve been following Isaiah Thomas on social media, you know he’s grieving the loss of rapper Nipsey Hussle. He talks about his relationship with him here.
HEARTBREAKING SEARCH FOR THE TRUTH: Kawhi Leonard’s father passed away when Leonard was just 16 years old, shot and killed at a car wash he owned and operated in Compton. It’s a tragic story, but officials are hoping that Leonard’s return to Los Angeles will help them catch a break in the case and find out who committed the heinous crime.
PLAYER IN MOURNING: Knicks 2-guard Reggie Bullock is mourning the loss of his younger sister, the second sibling he’s lost to violence in the last five years.
SALARY QUIZ: WHO’S THIS NBA PLAYER? 🤔
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