Durant’s 45 points trail the Nets, the Celtics, LeBron James and the Lakers.
The Brooklyn star broke a season high to lead the way to victory over Orlando. Lakers bent over the wire.
Kevin Durant scored 45 points, his season high, to lead the Brooklyn Nets to a 109-102 win over the Orlando Magic on Monday, confirming New York’s rebuild.
Meanwhile, the Boston Celtics, more than ever in the East, faced the Charlotte Hornets (140-105) and the Philadelphia 76ers finally erased a 16-point deficit to defeat the Atlanta Hawks (104-101) in the evening. Center Joel Embiid’s return from injury.
The Nets immediately had a lot to do in Brooklyn as the Magic took a ten-point lead in the first quarter. But things went back to normal and the New Yorkers took the lead before halftime before Durant put on a show.
In the third quarter, “KD” scored 19 points and blocked two shots in addition to a steal. “My teammates made great screens for me, we positioned well and I was able to make some baskets,” Durant concluded after the game.
The Nets had a chaotic start to the season: Coach Steve Nash was fired when Kyrie Irving found himself at the center of a social media controversy over an anti-Semitic movie ad.
Routine in Boston
But in a few games, everything got better, and Durant had complete success (19 of 24 shots), as well as seven rebounds and five assists, leading the Nets to their second consecutive victory and balance: 11 wins and 11 losses.
“We’ve already been through a lot this season and winning 50% was our main goal in the last two weeks. We want to keep moving forward,” added Durant, who was helped by Irving (20 points) and Nic Claxton (16 points and 13 rebounds) on Monday.
It was business as usual in Boston, and Jayson Tatum, who was out for the last game, came back to score 35 points before being rested in the final quarter, with the situation under control. As for Jaylen Brown, who replaced him against Washington on Sunday, the rest shift hurt his neck.
The Celtics put on a show with 24 3-pointers and 40 assists from their defenders to record their 13th win in 14 games. Without Terry Rozier, LaMelo Ball and Gordon Hayward, the “Hornets” could not find an answer.
Boston is rolling a little further atop the Eastern Conference (17-4).
Brilliant return from Embiid
In Philadelphia, Embiid recovered smoothly after missing four games with a sprained left foot. He initially missed six of seven shots, but still finished with a 50% shooting percentage (9 baskets for 18 shots), an additional eight rebounds and seven assists.
When Embiid gave the 76ers a 101-100 lead 18 seconds after the buzzer, then hit the game’s final free throw, the crowd chanted “MVP! MVP!”. And he calmed everyone down by saying after the match that he’s “excited to be back soon.”
In Washington, Wizards center Kristaps Porzingis scored a career-high 41 points, including 29 in the first half. His club beat the Minnesota Timberwolves (142-127) without star Karl-Anthony Towns in the third quarter with a right calf injury and was helped off the floor by French teammate Rudy Gobert.
In Los Angeles, the Lakers long believed they would win their third straight against the Pacers, leading 101-84 with ten minutes remaining.
And even LeBron James, who was released in the first quarter after an ankle sprain at 113 everywhere, was able to restore LA’s lead, but it was Indiana who had the final say thanks to Tyrese Halliburton’s crucial rebound and three-pointer. rookie Andrew Nembhard (116-115).
Results of the night:
LA Lakers –Indiana 115-116
Utah –Chicago 107-114
New Orleans-Oklahoma City 105-101
Philadelphia– Atlanta 104-101