Thursday and Friday recap: Paul Pierce, Drew Gooden post big numbers
- The Boston Celtics were without their two starting guards again on Friday night, and Paul Pierce did a little bit of everything to power his team to a 94-87 victory over the Indiana Pacers. Pierce scored 28 points (10-23 FG, 4-7 3PFG, 4-4 FT, 17 points in the third quarter alone) with 10 rebounds and eight assists in 34 minutes. Pierce also contributed three steals and two blocks (full stats here). He dominated every single statistical category on Friday — his points, rebounds and assists were game-highs, while his steals and blocks were team-highs. In fact, in the last four games, Pierce has averaged a gaudy 26.3 points, 7.3 rebounds and 8.8 assists.
Unsurprisingly, Pierce’s highlight video from Friday night also put up a gaudy number — it’s six minutes long:
- Drew Gooden (Milwaukee Bucks) had his best game of the season on Friday night in a 107-100 loss to the Chicago Bulls. Gooden started for Bucks center Andrew Bogut and dropped 23 points, 15 rebounds and six assists on the Bulls in 36 minutes. Gooden hit just six of his 14 shots but he was a perfect 10-for-10 from the free-throw line. He added a block and his third three-pointer in as many games (full stats here).
After the game, BrewHoop.com wrote:
Drew somehow flailed, chucked, and stumbed his way to a strong overall performance. Going 10-10 from the free throw line to offset 6-14 shooting, Gooden scored 23 points, grabbed 15 boards, and dished 6 assists (which led the team). He committed his fair share of Goodenisms, throwing passes 4 feet above teammates heads and rocketing shots off the backboard, but he pleased his fantasy owners if nothing else.
According to reports Friday, Bogut could be out 8 to 12 weeks, guaranteeing Gooden solid playing time for the foreseeable future and possibly the rest of the season.
- In his second game back from a shoulder injury, Kirk Hinrich (Atlanta Hawks) saw his minutes balloon as Hawks starting point guard Jeff Teague went down mid-way through the game with an injury of his own. Hinrich ended up playing 31 minutes as the Hawks beat the Detroit Pistons, 107-101 in overtime. Hinrich had just five points, but he added four rebounds and nine assists to three turnovers (full stats here).
After the game, Hinrich admitted he was worn out by the extended minutes (he played just 13 in his first game back before playing 20 straight on Friday). From the Atlanta Journal-Constitution:
“I was just gassed,” he said. “I just didn’t have any legs. Offensively, I think I’ve got a little ways to go obviously.”
A couple of other notes from the AJC:
Hinrich couldn’t find his shot but he had nine assists, including five over the final quarter and OT. Five of his assists resulted in scores within six feet of the basket and two others led to 3s.
Hinrich also took some pressure off Joe defensively. “He played with a lot of intensity, a lot of energy,” (Hawks coach Larry) Drew said. “He got on the floor for some loose balls. He gave us a big lift.”
- Mario Chalmers (Miami Heat) struggled a bit with foul trouble on Friday night against the New York Knicks. Chalmers picked up two quick fouls in the first quarter, sat out the fourth quarter, and finished with just two points and five rebounds in 18 minutes as the Heat beat the Knicks, 99-89 (full stats here). Chalmers also blocked a shot and showed off his quarterbacking skills with a ridiculous one-handed, full-court assist:
Xavier Henry (New Orleans Hornets) played eight minutes against the Orlando Magic on Friday and made his only shot — a 20-foot jumper with 1:35 left in the game (full stats here). It was Henry’s second game of the season, and the Hornets obliterated the Magic, 93-67.
Markieff Morris (Phoenix Suns) started again for the Suns on Friday, but he played just 18 minutes as the Portland Trailblazers ran away with the game, 109-71. Markieff scored three points (off a three-pointer) and collected four rebounds, an assist and a block (full stats here).
Nick Collison (Oklahoma City Thunder) scored six points with seven rebounds, three assists and a block in 25 minutes on Friday as the Thunder beat the Golden State Warriors, 120-109. Collison hit two of his three shots, but sank only 2 of 5 free throws (full stats here).
Brandon Rush (Golden State Warriors) played 26 minutes and scored seven points against the Oklahoma City Thunder on Friday night. Rush added three rebounds, two assists, a block and a three (full stats here).
Cole Aldrich (Oklahoma City Thunder) did not play (coach’s decision) on Friday against the Golden State Warriors.
Paul Pierce (Boston Celtics) scored 24 points with six rebounds and ten assists in 44 minutes on Thursday, and the Celtics came back from a 27-point deficit to beat the Orlando Magic, 91-83. Pierce had just five points at halftime and caught fire with 19 points, five rebounds and seven assists in the final two quarters (full stats here).
Josh Selby (Memphis Grizzlies) scored six points with a steal, an assist and two turnovers in 13 minutes on Thursday. The Grizzlies lost to the Los Angeles Clippers, 98-91 (full stats here).
Jayhawks in upcoming NBA games
7:30 p.m., Drew Gooden and the Milwaukee Bucks vs. the Los Angeles Lakers
8 p.m., Markieff Morris and the Phoenix Suns vs. Josh Selby and the Memphis Grizzlies