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NBA Rundown – February 22nd, 2013.

Kobe Bryant Sweat

Sweat Chugging Kobe. Noah Graham/NBAE/Getty Images

Controversial: The battle between the Portland Trail Blazers and Los Angeles Lakers came down to the wire with some controversial calls/no-calls. Down 4 with less than 13 seconds on the clock, the Blazers in bounds the ball to Nic Batum, who hits the jumper in the corner to cut the lead. The controversy was over whether Batum’s shot was a three or a two. You can decide below.

As you can see, it seemed pretty clear it was worth three points. No matter, the Blazers still had a chance to tie this game up via the foul game. Unfortunately, the Blazers would be victims to another officiating mistake.

Kobe was never called for the foul on Damian Lillard, so the Lakers improve to a 27-29 on the season, just two short of .500. Kobe scored a game-high 40 points on 15 of 23 shots. Dwight Howard, despite looking gingerly at times, snagged 16 boards and 19 points.

Blow Outs: There were a lot of guts spewed on Friday night, with 3 teams defeating their opponents by a margin of at least 25 points. After a beat down from Miami Heat on Thursday, the Chicago Bulls took care of the Charlotte Bobcats on the road. The Bulls had 37 assists on 42 field goals in the 30 point victory.

The Indiana Pacers have been cruising through their games in the first week back from the All-Star festivities. They have won their last two games by 30+ points, clinched the 2nd spot in the East, won 9 straight home games by double digits and went 10 of 14 from the three yesterday in the humiliation of the Detroit Pistons by 32 points.

Two Hands: Paul George has elastic limbs.

In spite of all of the injuries to their roster, the Boston Celtics have been able to hang onto a playoff spot. In the 25 point win against the Phoenix Suns, an unlikely hero, Jeff Green stepped up for 31 points on 11 of 14 shooting, 7 rebounds and 4 assists.

Block Party: With 17 blocks against the New Orleans Hornets, the Dallas Mavericks sets a new franchise record in the victory. Rookie Bernard James swatted 7 shots in 15 minutes to go with his 4 points and 6 rebounds. Down 1 with under 7 seconds to go, Vince Carter hits the three in Jason Smith’s face to seal the deal. The bald man came off the bench for 22 points (7 of 13), and 9 rebounds to pass Gary Payton for 28th in the NBA All Time Scoring list. Dirk Nowitzski added 25 points (10 of 17) and 7 boards. Meanwhile, Ryan Anderson of the Hornets got 20 points on 7 of 11 shooting and 12 rebounds off the bench.

Wild, Wild, Russ: Russell Westbrook went off for a season high 37 points on 13 of 22 shots, 7 rebounds and 9 assists against the Minnesota Timberwolves. The Wolves kept the game close in the beginning with help from the bench, but Russ could not be stopped. Kevin Durant chipped in 27 points (9 of 17), 7 rebounds and 7 assists. To put things into perspective, even though Minnesota shot an above average 48 percent from the field, OKC trumped them with 58 percent and 64 percent from downtown.

New Uniform Gold: Up 10 in the 4th quarter, the San Antonio Spurs were poised win their 17th of their last 18 games. But the Golden State Warriors had other ideas. Led by Jarrett Jack, who came off the bench for 30 points on 11 of 22 shooting and 10 assists, the Warriors in the debut of their new T-Shirt jerseys, would comeback from the deficit and take it in overtime. David Lee was monstrous in this game, going off for 25 points (10 of 20), and 22 rebounds. The Spurs, known for their depth was lacking last night, with only 24 points from their second unit. Danny green, Tony Parker and Tim Duncan had to do all the heavy lifting, combining for 57 points to fall short of winning their 6th straight on the road.

Fantasy Shoutouts: Brooklyn’s Brook Lopez netted 27 points (13 of 21) and 6 rebounds in the loss to the Houston Rockets, who shot 16 of 30 from beyond the arc. Isiah Thomas of the Sacramento Kings, had 30 points (9 of 18), 6 rebounds and 9 assists against the streaking Atlanta Hawks. Rudy Gay scored 17 of his 32 points in the third quarter in the Raptors win over the New York Knicks. The newly acquired swing man finished with 11 of 23 shooting and 7 rebounds.


Stalking Prey: Jeff Teague hunts Isiah Thomas down.

Bullets: Jeremy Lin gets craft with his passes.

Follow me on twitter @Leslie_Kam. You can also find me on The Basketball Machine for more NBA fun.