Breakfast Special: Chef Curry, Extra Spicy

The Denver Nuggets had four players with at least 20 points in Oakland Monday night. They shot 49.5 percent from the field and racked up 114 points.

Trouble is, Stephen Curry exploded for 32 points, the Warriors shot 56.5 percent as a team, and the Nugs, who seem to only win on Friday and Saturday, lost another game during the week to the tune of 124-114.

For Curry, it was another fantastic display of efficiency. 9-of-17 from the field. 5-of-10 for three. 9-of-10 from the line. Just a .529/.500/.900 line because he clearly got upgraded to MVP caliber again during his injury rest.

One wonders if perhaps the wear and tear of having the shortest possible offseason for three straight years didn’t wear on him to the point where he really did need some time on the shelf midseason.

Draymond Green added 23 points and 10 assists for the Dubs, who overcame yet another rough night turning the ball over (16 to Denver’s 11) by sheer volume of made shots.

The Warriors are now 33-8. If you go by point differential, they should actually improve slightly in the second half of the season and end up 67-15. That’s the same record they posted during their two championship runs.

Oh, and they’re doing this without Kevin Durant. Yikes.

But let’s show some love for Draymond, huh? He’s been lost in the shuffle of the Big Four sometimes.

And Steph Gonna Steph:

Oh Gods, LeBron, What Happened?!

LeBron James had just 10 points on 4-of-8 shooting, and he was the leading scorer in Cleveland’s starting lineup, all while posting a you-gotta-be-kidding minus-39 plus/minus as the Cavaliers got smashed in Minnesota by a 127-99 count.

In total, the Cavs’ starting lineup hit 10 shots on 38 tries, a 26.3 percent clip.

Meanwhile, the Newton’s Third Law equivalent was Jimmy Butler, who went for 21 points on 7-of-13 while posting a plus-39. The Wolves’ starters, led by 25 from Andrew Wiggins and featuring double-doubles from both Karl-Anthony Towns (19 points, 12 boards) and Taj Gibson (16 and 13), shot a combined 35-of-64 (54.7 percent.)

Oh, and Minnesota turned the ball over just five times compared to Cleveland’s 13.

Butler had eight rebounds and nine assists to flirt with a triple-double; this was just a demolition for a Cavs team whose defense is atrocious.

Let’s see some highlights from the men of the hour:

Hail to the Victor

Instant contender, just add Victor Oladipo.

The Pacers avenged a smackdown at the hands of the Bucks in Milwaukee last Wednesday, winning at home 109-96 in a game they led by 21 after the first quarter (37-16) and by as many as 29 late in the third quarter. Milwaukee only made it as close as it ended thanks to outplaying the Pacers in garbage time. After Oladipo made a nifty buzzer beater to send Indiana into the final quarter up 88-65, that was supposed to be it:

Indeed, it got so far out of hand, with Milwaukee closing the gap all the way to 10 at one point in the fourth, that the Pacers had to put the starters back in with 3:53 left just to make sure the bench didn’t blow the lead.

Domantas Sabonis actually led the Pacers in scoring with 17; three starters scored 15 including Oladipo, two others scored 11, and the team got a Total Team Effort with seven guys in double figures total.

The Pacers’ starters shot 58.7 percent combined, every one making at least half of his shots.

Giannis Antetokounmpo had 17 for the Bucks, but it was thanks mainly to getting some help from the refs; 11 of his points came from the free throw line. It was fantastic defensive containment by Indiana.

But let’s give the bulk of the credit to Indiana’s ball movement; they racked up the assists and played a team game:

Lightning Round!

The Rockets may not have James Harden, but against a Bulls team that didn’t have Nikola Mirotic, Houston grabbed a 116-107 win at United Center behind 20 threes on 54 tries and a double-double from Clint Capela:

Toronto needed overtime and a 35-point, 14-of-30 Dark Ages Special including the game winner from DeMar DeRozan to beat the Brooklyn Nets 114-113. Kyle Lowry had to be carried off the court, which could spell trouble for the East’s top team by advanced stats if not by record:

30 points from Anthony Davis, 23 from E’Twaun Moore, and 20 from DeMarcus Cousins powered New Orleans to a 112-109 win over Detroit. The Pellies shot 56.2 percent in this one, helped by 15 assists from Rajon Rondo:

LaMarcus Aldridge led the Spurs with 31, while Davis Bertans had 28 off the bench in San Antonio’s 107-100 win in Sacramento, a win achieved mainly by the Kings’ 18 turnovers to the Spurs’ 11:

DeAndre Jordan had 25 points and 18 rebounds, while the Clippers finally seem to have caught on the the fact that Austin Rivers sucks and therefore Lou Williams should be starting Williams had 34 points and is averaging 22.2 a game on the season with a 21.7 PER.

The Clips beat Atlanta 108-107 at home:

It’s Tuesday, and that means two things. Tacos, and Indiana Pacers talk. I’ll be providing an update on the Lance Effect, because Stephenson had a terrible start to the season statistically; has he started to justify the minutes he plays and not just his intangibles?

Stay tuned, and thanks for reading!