Popovich seals 1,000th win as a coach while Warriors and Hawks win…
The Oklahoma City Thunder closed the gap on their playoff-chasing rivals in the Western Conference as they defeated the Denver Nuggets on Monday night.
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Kevin Durant scored 40 points while Russell Westbrook added 26 as the Thunder moved to 27-25 for the season and benefited from rivals the New Orleans Pelicans losing.
OKC still remain outside the playoff spots with the Phoenix Suns in eighth place, but coach Scott Brooks was pleased with what he saw from his team as they threaten to put together a winning streak.
Mitch McGary added 17 points and 10 rebounds as the Nuggets lost their sixth in a row and 13 of their last 14.
Meanwhile, San Antonio Spurs coach Gregg Popovich earned a sensational new accolade as he collected his 1,000th win as a head coach with victory over the Indiana Pacers on Monday.
San Antonio rallied from a 14-point deficit in the fourth quarter with Marco Belinelli hitting an 18-foot baseline jumper with 2.1 seconds remaining to give Popovich the milestone.
“I’ve been here a long time and I’ve had good players. That’s the formula,” Popovich told reporters after the game.
“Getting the players is difficult, but I’ve been fortunate to have good ones. The time, that’s the most important element. You have to be around for a while I guess.”
Elsewhere, it was business as usual for the Golden State Warriors and Atlanta Hawks who both won to extend their leads at the top of their respective Conferences.
Stephen Curry put up 20 points, five rebounds and six assists in the win over the Philadelphia 76ers despite an off night from beyond the arc, while Al Horford led the charge for the Hawks against the Minnesota Timberwolves with 28 points, eight rebounds and three assists.
However, the shock of the night arguably came in Dallas where the Los Angeles Clippers defeated the Mavericks despite the absence of Blake Griffin.
DeAndre Jordan dominated the paint with 22 points and 27 rebounds, but the Clippers certainly benefited from both Tyson Chandler and Monta Ellis picking up injuries in the first four minutes of the game.
Chris Paul added 25 points and 13 assists as the Clippers improve to 34-19.
San Antonio Spurs 95-93 Indiana Pacers
Golden State Warriors 89-84 Philadelphia 76ers
Orlando Magic 80-96 Washington Wizards
New York Knicks 95-109 Miami Heat
Brooklyn Nets 97-103 Milwaukee Bucks
Atlanta Hawks 117-105 Minnesota Timberwolves
Utah Jazz 100-96 New Orleans Pelicans
Los Angeles Clippers 115-98 Dallas Mavericks
Oklahoma City Thunder 124-114 Denver Nuggets