Kyrie not totally willing to apologise | 02:41
A star opened his post-match press conference with a strong message to a referee and the NBA.
Plus Jerami Grant nailed a huge buzzer beater to sink the Suns ... but should it have counted?
Catch up on all of the day’s action in our NBA Wrap!
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GRANT BEATS BUZZER ... BUT SHOULD IT HAVE COUNTED?
Jerami Grant has buried a contentious buzzer beater to lift the Portland Trail Blazers past the Phoenix Suns on Saturday (all times AEDT).
Grant caught the ball from an inbounds play with one second left and shuffled backwards – appearing to potentially travel – before nailing the fadeaway shot.
It was widely questioned by the basketball world whether, firstly, Grant travelled, and secondly, whether the timekeeper took too long to count one second.
The shot was instantly reviewed but given the all clear to seal a big road win for Chauncey Billups’ team.
It marked 200 days since the last NBA game-winning buzzer beater from Jayson Tatum on April 27, 2022, per NBA reporter Steve Helwick.
With both Damian Lillard and Anfernee Simons sidelined, Grant stepped up with 30 points to help improve the team to 6-2 on the season and climb back into first in the Western Conference.
Meanwhile the Suns fell to 6-2 to slide down to second in the West.
DINWIDDIE REVEALS REF’S SHOCK SLEDGE
Dallas Mavericks’ Spencer Dinwiddie claims referee Tony Brothers referred to him as a “b*tch a** motherf***er” to a teammate during the team’s win over Toronto.
Brothers called Dinwiddie for a take foul late in the second quarter then very quickly gave him a technical after the guard argued the call.
Soon after Brothers was seen speaking to Maverick Reggie Bullock while Gary Trent Jr. stepped to the foul line.
Dinwiddie opened his post-game press conference with a message to Brothers and the NBA about his technical foul during the contest.
Spencer Dinwiddie arguing with Tony Brothers.
Source: Fox Sports
“What seemed to keep him (Brothers) irate, which was a clap, I think he thought was disrespectful,” Dinwiddie told reporters.
“If you watch the games – and I know that’s what refs are supposed to do – you’d see I clap to get the attention of my teammates ... so it was nothing personal.
“As a man I would like to say sorry first and foremost, secondly, I’d like to say, no’t only would I like my money back, but I would like to not be called a “b*tch a** motherf***er” to my teammates.
“If there is anybody that feels that way about me – not naming any names – they can address me personally face to face.
“I would definitely like my money back, and I would appreciate no fine at all in this monologue.”
Brothers was not made available to the media post-match, the NBA said.
Dinwiddie finished with 21 points, seven assists and two steals, while Luka Doncic continued his strong start to the season with 35 points, eight rebounds, six assists and three steals.
Doncic notched his eighth straight game and joined NBA great Wilt Chamberlain as the only players to score 30 or more in eight or more straight games to start a season.Chamberlain did it twice – including his run of 23 games with 30 or more to start the 1962-63 season.
Meanwhile Scottie Barnes recorded his first career triple-double with 11 points, 11 rebounds and 11 assists and OG Anunoby added 27 points and five steals.
The result saw Dallas improve to 5-3 and Toronto drop to 5-4.
WARRIORS DROP FIFTH STRAIGHT AS HORROR START CONTINUES
The Golden State Warriors have suffered their fifth-straight defeat, losing to the New Orleans Pelicans on the road 105-114.
With it the Warriors became the first defending champions to start a season 0-6 on the road in NBA history, per Elias Sports Bureau.
Stephen Curry, Andrew Wiggins, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green all sat out as Warriors coach Steve Kerr made good on his assertion that he was “willing to play anybody” in a bid to turn things around.
Youngsters Jonathan Kuminga, Moses Moody, Anthony Lamb and Ty Jerome kept it close, but couldn’t get over the hump against a much improved Pelicans team boosted by the return of Brandon Ingram.
Ingram dominated in his return (Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images)
Source: Fox Sports
Ingram starred in his return with 26 points, five rebounds and five assists and CJ McCollum added 20 points as they improved to 5-3.
The return of Ingram and Herb Jones meant Aussie Dyson Daniels got squeezed out of New Orleans’ deep rotation.
For the Warriors, Jordan Poole led the way with 20 points and nine assists, but Steve Kerr’s side dropped to 3-7 on the season.
LAKERS TAKE ‘HUGE STEP BACKWARD’
The Los Angeles Lakers also lost again as Lauri Markkanen scored 27 points to lead the surprising Utah Jazz to a 130-116 victory.
Jordan Clarkson added 20 points and Kelly Olynyk scored 18 for the Jazz, who improved to 7-3.
Russell Westbrook had 28 points and six assists off the bench for Los Angeles, who fell to 2-6.
LeBron James, who has been battling flu and a sore left foot, had 17 points and 11 rebounds.
James is shooting 20.7 per cent from three-pointers, the worst in the NBA (minimum 50 attempts), and has missed 13-straight triples, per StatMuse.
Lakers coach Darvin Ham called the game a “huge step backward,” pointing to lacklustre defence that saw the Jazz score 75 points in the first half.
KD MOVE GOES VIRAL AMID HUGE OUTING
Kevin Durant has delivered for Brooklyn right when it needed.
Amid a tumultuous week at the Nets including the firing of coach Steve Nash and suspension of Kyrie Irving, Durant – playing in his hometown of Washington – put the team on his back in a 128-86 domination of the Wizards.
The star forward posted 28 points, two triples, nine rebounds and 11 assists in 33 minutes to lead the Nets to a big win and improve to 3-6 on the season.
Durant was on fire from the opening tip, scoring 12 points in the first quarter including performing an epic ankle breaking dribble move on Daniel Gafford late in the period that prompted a surprise eruption from the Wizards fans – and big reaction from the NBA world on social media.
“I really thought he slipped on some sweat there … I was glad that we was able to get some momentum, I was able to get some space to do my thing and I‘m glad I finished the shot too,” Durant said post-match of the play, per ClutchPoints.
Durant admitted after Saturday’s shoot around that the fallout from Irving’s social media post on an antisemitic book and movie – that Irving initially refused to apologise for before eventually doing so – is an “unfortunate situation” “just sucks all around for everybody and hopefully we can move past it”.
“I ain‘t here to judge nobody or talk down on nobody for how they feel, their view or anything,” Durant said, per ESPN.
”I just didn’t like anything that went on. I feel like it was all unnecessary. I felt like we could have just kept playing basketball and kept quiet as an organisation. I just don’t like none of it.”
Durant later clarified his comments on social media that he doesn’t “condone hate speech or antisemitism.”
“Let’s put the joy back in basketball,” Nets owner Joe Tsai said in a tweet after the victory.
Elsewhere for Brooklyn, Nic Claxton had 18 points nine rebounds and three blocks, while Bradley Beal’s 20 points led the Wizards,
Ben Simmons missed a fourth-straight game for the Nets with a knee issue and hasn’t travelled for the team with its current road trip in Washington and Charlotte.
Cleveland veteran Kevin Love scored 21 points, pulled down eight rebounds and handed out 10 assists to help the Cavaliers to a seventh straight win, a 112-88 blowout of the Pistons.
Meanwhile the New York Knicks and Indiana Pacers both pulled out narrow victories, the Knicks downing the short-handed Philadelphia 76ers 106-104 and the Pacers holding off the Miami Heat 101-99.
Despite the absence of ailing Joel Embiid and injured James Harden, the Sixers led by 12 early in the fourth quarter at Madison Square Garden, but they couldn’t resist the Knicks rally.
Obi Toppin scored 13 of his 17 points in the fourth quarter for the Knicks, scoring with dunks and long-range bombs as New York fought back.
Jalen Brunson converted a three-point play that put the Knicks up 100-96 with just over a minute remaining, finishing with 23 points as the Knicks ended a three-game losing streak.
Tyrese Maxey scored 31 points for Philadelphia and Tobias Harris added 23 but the Sixers dropped their second straight.
In Indianapolis, Buddy Hield scored 25 points, Bennedict Mathurin had 23 off the bench and Tyrese Haliburton chipped in 22 as the Pacers held off the Heat, who played their second straight game without top scorer Jimmy Butler.
Tyler Herro led the Heat with 29 points, but missed a potential game-winning three pointer with 1.3 seconds to play.
Meanwhile, the Milwaukee Bucks kept rolling, beating the Minnesota Timberwolves 115-102 to improve to 8-0, the best start in franchise history.
Two-time NBA Most Valuable Player Giannis Antetokounmpo had his 30th career triple double with 26 points, 14 rebounds and 11 assists and Jrue Holiday scored 29 points for the Bucks, the only unbeaten team remaining.
CAVALIERS 112 PISTONS 88
HEAT 99 PACERS 101
KNICKS 106 SIXERS 104
NETS 128 WIZARDS 86
BULLS 119 CELTICS 123
HORNETS 99 GRIZZLIES 130
CLIPPERS 113 SPURS 106
RAPTORS 110 MAVERICKS 111
WARRIORS 105 PELICANS 114
BUCKS 115 TIMBERWOLVES 102
TRAIL BLAZERS 108 SUNS 106
JAZZ 130 LAKERS 116