NBA – Milwaukee consolidates its 2nd place, Durant takes on Brooklyn

With three days to go in the regular season, few games remain in play except to determine the top six seeds in each conference and the order of playoff games, for teams ranked 7th through 10th. . In the East, the Bucks have their destiny in hand to keep their 2nd place until the end. Authoritative winners on the Pistons (131-101) will have to do the same on Sunday in Cleveland.

Giannis Antetokounmpo was on his banner (30 pts, 13 rebounds, 8 assists), without forcing, in just 28 minutes on the court, because the match was doubled at the end of the first quarter, already leading the defending champion 30-8. Almost assured of fifth place, not yet knowing if they will face Philadelphia (4th), Boston (3rd) or even Milwaukee in an unlikely scenario, the Raptors fought for their 14th win in 17 games, against Houston (117- 115) after clearing a delay of 24 units.

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Pascal Siakam led them again (29 pts, 12 rebounds, 7 assists, 3 interceptions), well supported by Gary Trent Jr (26 pts), to respond to Kevin Porter Jr’s 35 points (10 rebounds). As for the play-offs, the Nets, winners of the Cavs (118-107) thanks to Kevin Durant (36 pts), reached the halfway point to finish 7th. A place that guarantees them to play at home against 8 in the first qualifying match next week and, if necessary, in the second opportunity, against the winner of the match between 9 and 10.

Phoenix defeats Utah despite Gobert

If they win against Indiana on Sunday, the New Yorkers will hold onto their position, even if Cleveland (8th) beats Milwaukee. Because they have won three of their four direct confrontations, the first criterion to decide between teams with the same track record. Their positions are less fixed, with Atlanta (9th) and Charlotte (10th) just a win away. The Hawks after their loss to the leader Miami (113-109) where Trae Young shone in vain (35 pts, 8 assists), the Hornets thanks to their success in Chicago (133-117).

In the West, Dallas (4th) crushed Portland (128-78). Third success in a row thanks mainly to Luka Doncic (39 pts, 11 rebounds), who suffered his 16th technical foul of the season. As a result, he will be automatically suspended on Sunday against San Antonio, which is always better than missing the first game of the first round of the playoffs.

Finally, Phoenix, the best team in the championship, prevailed in Utah (111-105), after a fiery last quarter (36-13), in which they erased a delay that had reached 17 points. Devin Booker (33 pts) and Chris Paul (16 pts, 16 assists) guided the Suns to their 64th win of the season, further improving their franchise record. Opposite, Rudy Gobert did what he could (16 pts, 12 rebounds) to support Donovan Mitchell in difficulty (18 pts at 7/21 shooting). The Jazz will have to win Sunday at Portland to be certain of finishing 5th, ahead of Denver (6th).

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