Tar Heels in NBA: Anthony hits 26, has energizing Magic since return; Johnson has 12 but Suns’ streak ends

By R.L. Bynum

Cole Anthony has energized a previously struggling Orlando Magic team.

Orlando went winless in the six games he missed with a sprained right ankle. The Magic has won as he scored 24 points in his first game back Wednesday. His potential game-winning 3-point attempt at the buzzer rimmed out in his second game Friday.

Anthony scored a game-high 26 points, three 3-pointers and dished out seven assists, but the Houston Rockets earned a 118–116 home win over Orlando (5–19). Anthony has at least seven assists in six consecutive games.

First-year Orlando coach Jamahl Mosely said that Anthony’s determination has been a boost to the Magic.

“I think it is a reflection of his work ethic,” Mosley said. “It’s a reflection of his confidence. And there’s also the confidence that his teammates have in him to be willing to take those shots.”

Anthony’s step-back jumper gave him eight points during a 13–0 Orlando run and tied the game with 46.9 seconds. But two Eric Gordon buckets, the second with 1.6 seconds left, gave Houston a two-point lead before Anthony’s last-second shot missed.

“If we would’ve played the whole game like we played the last two minutes, we would’ve won the game by 30,” Anthony said. “That’s personally what I think.”

Anthony had five of Orlando’s 18 turnovers, which were a big factor in the Magic falling behind by so many points.

“You give any team [that many] turnovers, they’re going to score, especially a team that’s young and wants to run,” Anthony said. “It just starts with me. Just got to feed my team better energy.”

Even though he missed six games, Anthony has scored at least 20 points a team-high 10 times this season and his scoring average has eclipsed 20 at 20.2. Twelve of his points came in the fourth quarter.


The Phoenix Suns’ 18-game win streak ended with a 118–96 loss at Golden State but Cameron Johnson’s streak of solid games didn’t. He collected 12 points, two 3-pointers, four rebounds, two assists and one steal and has scored in double figures a season-high three consecutive games

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Danny Green collected 10 points, three rebounds, a steal and a block in Philadelphia’s 98–96 win at Atlanta. With his two 3-pointers, Green tied Thaddeus Young for 22nd on the all-time 76ers 3-pointers list with 208.


Reggie Bullock started for a second consecutive game in Dallas’ 107–91 home loss to New Orleans. He failed to score in double figures for the 10th game in a row, getting four points and two rebounds.


Wayne Ellington came off the bench to score six points on two 3-pointers in 20 minutes as the Los Angeles Lakers lost to the Los Angeles Clippers 119–115. It was his fourth consecutive single-digit scoring game.

With the 3-pointers, though, he passed Antawn Jamison for 85th on the all-time 3-pointers list with 1,164. Jamison had 1,163 career 3-pointers.


Day’Ron Sharpe was inactive for Brooklyn’s 110–105 win over Minnesota as the Nets assigned him to the G League Long Island Nets. Long Island plays at Delaware on Saturday night, which would be his third G League game of the season.

Cole Anthony, Orlando Magic guard
118–116 loss
at Houston — Started; 36 minutes, 26 points, 10–20 FG, 3–9 3FG, 3–3 FT, 2 rebounds, 7 assists, 5 turnovers, +3, 15.3 game score
Season statistics — 18 games, 20.2 points, 42.6 FG%, 35.8 3FG%, 87.1 FT%, 6.6 rebounds, 6.0 assists
Up next — 10 p.m. Monday at Golden State; 10 p.m. Wednesday at Sacramento
———————————————
Harrison Barnes, Sacramento Kings forward
Off Friday
Season statistics —
19 games, 19.0 points, 47.8 FG%, 39.8 3FG%, 84.6 FT%, 7.2 rebounds, 2.4 assists
Up next — 10 p.m. Saturday vs. Los Angeles Clippers; 10 p.m. Wednesday vs. Orlando
———————————————
Tony Bradley, Chicago Bulls center
Off Friday
Season statistics — 17 games, 3.6 points, 55.8 FG%, 4.2 rebounds, 0.4 of an assist
Up next — 7:30 Saturday at Brooklyn; 8 p.m. Monday vs. Denver
———————————————
Reggie Bullock, Dallas Mavericks guard/forward
107–91 loss
vs. New Orleans — Started; 27 minutes, 4 points, 1–4 FG, 1–4 3FG, 1–1 FT, 2 rebounds, 1 turnover, -1, 0.0 game score
Season statistics —
20 games, 5.6 points, 35.3 FG%, 28.6 3P%, 62.5 FT%, 2.8 rebounds, 0.7 of an assist
Up next —
8:30 p.m. Saturday vs. Memphis; 7:30 Tuesday vs. Brooklyn, TNT
———————————————
Ed Davis, Cleveland Cavaliers center
116–101 win
at Washington — 2 minutes, 1 rebound, -0.1 game score
Season statistics —
9 games, 1.7 points, 70.0 FG%, 50.0 FT%, 3.2 rebounds, 0.1 of an assist
Up next — 3:30 p.m. Sunday vs. Utah; 8 p.m. Monday at Milwaukee
———————————————
Wayne Ellington, Los Angeles Lakers guard
119–115 loss
vs. Los Angeles Clippers — 20 minutes, 6 points, 2–5 FG, 2–5 3FG, +15, 4.3 game score
Season statistics —
16 games, 6.6 points, 40.2 FG%, 39.5 3FG%, 4–4 FT, 1.5 rebounds, 0.7 of an assist
Up next — 10 p.m. Tuesday vs. Boston, TNT; 8 p.m. Thursday at Memphis
———————————————
Danny Green, Philadelphia 76ers forward
98
96 win at Atlanta — Started; 33 minutes, 10 points, 4–9 FG, 2–5 3FG, 3 rebounds, 1 steal, 1 block, 2 turnovers, +8, 4.3 game score
Season statistics — 16 games, 7.8 points, 46.3 FG%, 41.8 3FG%, 4–4 FT, 2.4 rebounds, 1.0 assists
Up next — 7 p.m. Monday at Charlotte, FSSE; 7 p.m. Wednesday at Charlotte, FSSE
———————————————
Cameron Johnson, Phoenix Suns wing
118–96
at Golden State — 33 minutes, 12 points, 3–8 FG, 2–5 3FG, 4–5 FT, 4 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 steal, 2 turnovers, -14, 8.0 game score
Season statistics —
23 games, 9.3 points, 42.4 FG%, 40.5 3FG%, 3.3 rebounds, 1.3 assists
Up next — 9 p.m. Monday vs. San Antonio; 10 p.m. Friday vs. Boston, ESPN
———————————————
Nassir Little, Portland Trail Blazers wing
Off Friday
Season statistics — 21 games, 8.3 points, 47.8 FG%, 31.7 3P%, 82.8 FT%, 5.3 rebounds, 0.8 of an assist
Up next — 10 p.m. Saturday vs. Boston; 10 p.m. Monday vs. Los Angeles Clippers
———————————————
Day’Ron Sharpe, Brooklyn Nets center
110–105 win
vs. Minnesota — Inactive, assigned to Long Island Nets, who play Saturday at Delaware
Season NBA statistics — 8 games, 2.6 points, 52.9 FG%, 33.3% 3P%, 2–5 FT, 2.1 rebounds
Season G League statistics — 2 games, 15.5 points, 4–12 FG, 40.9 3P%, 71.4 FT%, 12.5 rebounds, 4 steals, 6 blocks
Up next — 7:30 p.m. Saturday vs. Chicago; 7:30 Tuesday at Dallas, TNT
———————————————
Coby White, Chicago Bulls guard
Off Friday. White is out under NBA health-and-safety protocols after testing positive for COVID-19, although fully vaccinated
Season statistics — 9 games, 6.1 points, 34.9 FG%, 22.6 3P%, 2.6 rebounds, 1.3 assists
Up next — 7:30 Saturday at Brooklyn; 8 p.m. Monday vs. Denver
———————————————
In G League
Justin Jackson, Texas Legends (Mavericks affiliate) forward
Season statistics — 6 games, 22.5 points, 49.0% FG, 44.6% 3FG, 72.7 FT%, 8.0 rebounds, 3.3 assists, 0.7 of a steal
Up next — 8 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 9, 8:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 11 vs. Austin Spurs
———————————————
Theo Pinson, Maine Celtics guard
Season statistics —
8 games, 19.1 points, 48.1 FG%, 44.4 3FG%, 89.5 FT%, 4.9 rebounds, 3.8 assists, 1.4 steals
Up next — 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 9 and 2 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 11 vs. Raptors 905
———————————————

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