Ben Simmons fouled out to cap off a forgettable performance for the Aussie.
Plus the Celtics collapsed for their first loss in a wild game against the Bulls.
Catch up on all of the day’s action in our NBA Wrap!
Watch an average of 9 LIVE NBA Regular Season games per week on ESPN on Kayo Sports on ESPN on Kayo Sports. New to Kayo? Start your free trial now >
Tue, 25 Oct
Tuesday October 25th
SIMMONS FOULS OUT AFTER ‘ABSURD’ CALL
Ben Simmons fouled out late in the Brooklyn Nets’ 134-124 loss to the Memphis Grizzlies in a dubious call that capped off a disappointing game for the Aussie.
With 3:52 left in the game and the Grizzlies up 124-118, Ja Morant held the ball at half court and drew Simmons out to him before accentuating slight contact for Simmons’ sixth foul to mark his marching orders.
After the play Morant waived goodbye to Simmons, who was left unimpressed as he argued the call with the referees, while Nets coach Steve Nash blew up in a crazy sequence.
Simmons finished with seven points, three rebounds, eight assists and five turnovers as the Nets fell to 1-2 on the season.
He’s now recorded 17 points and 14 fouls across three games this season — fouling out in two of the three contests — in a rough start to his Nets career.
Simmons said post-match he thought he got a lot of “bulls**t* calls, but finished his press conference by saying he didn’t want to get fined for commenting too much on the officiating.
The Aussie admitted he’s still rusty, having sat out all of last season following his trade standoff with the Philadelphia 76ers prior to getting moved to the Nets.
Nash concurred that “rust” has been been Simmons’ biggest issue this season amid the Nets’ struggles.
Meanwhile Morant revealed post-match he baited Simmons into his sixth foul by remembering a similar play during the Grizzlies star’s rookie season when the Aussie stole the ball off him and dunked it, calling it a “high IQ play”.
“The same situation like that happened with Ben … I knew he was going to be press up and I was going to force the ref to make the call,” he explained.
Morant and Desmond Bane combined for 76 points for Memphis, while Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving posted a combined 74 points themselves in a high-scoring affair.
CELTICS COLLAPSE IN WILD CONTEST
The Boston Celtics have collapsed badly to the Chicago Bulls in a 37-point turnaround to suffer their first loss of the season 120-102.
The Celtics led by as much as 19 points early in the game before Chicago responded in a big way including dominating the second term 35-15.
In the midst of the Bulls’ impressive run, Celtics coach Joe Mazzulla was given two technical fouls and subsequently ejected for the first time after shouting across court to two referees.
Then minutes later, Grant Williams was also tossed for making contact with an official after committing a foul.
It made for a forgettable day in the Boston camp despite Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown combining for 47 points to continue their strong form this season.
DeMar DeRozan’s 25 points led the way for the Bulls, while Nikola Vucevic (18 points, 23 rebounds) and Ayo Dosunmu (22 points, six rebounds) also played well.
KNICKS COMPLETE COMEBACK OVER ORLANDO
Eight minutes and 13 seconds remained in the third quarter and the Garden was suddenly quiet. A 10-point lead had vanished and the new point guard, Jalen Brunson, had just picked up his fourth foul despite hitting the floor himself.
Tom Thibodeau didn’t go to his bench, despite the situation. That is how much he trusts his new floor general. Brunson responded by not only avoiding his fifth foul, but picking the Knicks up off the mat as well.
Brunson scored the game’s next seven points, and his teammates followed his lead with an explosive 25-9 run to take control, sending the Knicks to their second win in as many games at the Garden, 115-102, over the young and winless Magic on Monday night.
After that mini-Brunson spurt, the game opened up for the Knicks. Shots began to fall. They got stops. After years without a true point guard, Brunson (21 points, six assists, two steals) already seems like the answer the Knicks have been waiting for at that position. He has alleviated some of the pressure on Julius Randle, who continued his strong start to the season with 25 points and 12 rebounds. RJ Barrett rebounded from a shaky first half to score 20 points and hit his first three 3-pointers of the season after missing his first 11. Mitchell Robinson added 14 points and three blocks, and Obi Toppin chipped in 10 points off the bench.
Rookie Paolo Banchero, the No. 1-overall pick out of Duke, led the Magic with 21 points.
The Magic started the third quarter hot, ripping off an 11-2 run to take their first lead since the opening quarter. Despite Brunson picking up his fourth foul less than four minutes into the quarter, Thibodeau stuck with his new point guard and Brunson got aggressive, scoring seven straight points as the Knicks retook the lead. Soon, on the strength of a 16-3 spurt, the advantage was into double figures, the firing-on-all-cylinders Knicks dunking all over the Magic en route to a 14-point lead entering the final quarter.
The bench provided a major jolt upon checking into the game in the first quarter, engineering a 16-6 run that was fuelled by seven Cam Reddish points. Immanuel Quickley produced four assists in as many minutes to close the quarter, creating fast-break opportunities with his defence and pushing the ball down the floor.
Twice in that opening half, the Knicks looked ready to pull away, only for the Magic to counterpunch. It was a six-point edge at the break, but felt larger, the Knicks outrebounding and outshooting their opponent. The one negative was Barrett’s continued shooting woes, to the tune of a 1-for-9 start, the young wing impeding the Knicks’ free-flowing offence with forced and errant shots.
Bol Bol, the 7-foot-2 son of Manute Bol, wowed the Garden crowd with a career-high-equalling, 11 first-half points for the Magic, scoring on the perimeter and in the paint.
-Zach Braziller from New York Post
PACERS 106 76ERS 120
RAPTORS 98 HEAT 90
MAGIC 102 KNICKS 115
CELTICS 102 BULLS 120
JAZZ 108 ROCKETS 114
NERS 124 GRIZZLIES 134
SPURS 115 TIMBERWOLVES 106