Tar Heels in NBA: Anthony’s All-Star-level performances keep coming, but in losses; Johnson’s NBA-best streak of multiple 3s continues in Suns loss

By R.L. Bynum

Cole Anthony consistently is delivering one good game after another but the frustrating losses for his Orlando Magic are coming at the same pace.

Anthony contributed 19 points, eight rebounds and six assists on Saturday, but in a 97–92 road loss to the Detroit Pistons (8–30), in a matchup of the NBA’s two worst teams. It was the eighth consecutive loss for the Magic (7–33).

He’s making a case to be selected for the All-Star Game with his play this season but had a rough shooting night, going 5 of 18 from the floor and 3 of 12 from 3-point range.

Anthony’s 3-pointer from 34 feet out capped an 8–0 third-quarter run as Orlando rallied from a nine-point third-quarter deficit to tie the game entering the fourth quarter.

Anthony missed a potential game-tying 3-point attempt with 1.6 seconds left before Cory Joseph put the game away on a pair of free throws with 0.6 of a second left.

Gary Trent led Orlando with 18 points and six 3-pointers.

“We did a lot of good things to get us back into the game in the third quarter, but we got away from them down the stretch,” Anthony said. “That’s on me, because Gary was hitting everything and I didn’t get him enough shots, and I needed to get Franz [Wagner] going down the stretch.”


After six games in the Phoenix starting lineup, it was back to coming off the bench for Cameron Johnson on a night that didn’t go well for the Suns.

Johnson contributed 15 points, five rebounds and two assists but the hot-shooting Miami Heat took a surprisingly easy 123–100 victory at Phoenix.

Johnson returned to his reserve role because forward Jae Crowder, along with centers Deandre Ayton and JaVale McGee, returned from the NBA’s health-and-safety protocols. Crowder and Ayton started, with Crowder taking Johnson’s spot.

Even in a rough night for Phoenix, Johnson’s three 3-pointers extended his Suns franchise record of multiple 3s in a game to 22, the longest in the NBA this season. He also pushed his career-high streak of double-figure scoring games to 19.

Justin Jackson had the best +/- on the team in the loss at +6.

In nine minutes, he scored five points, making both of his shots, including a 3-pointer, and pulled down two rebounds.

Jackson tweeted a video of his newborn daughter, Luna Starr, watching him hit a 3-pointer last week against the Los Angeles Clippers.

Phoenix still has the best record in the league at 30–9, leading Golden State by a half-game.


There was good news for Theo Pinson, who signed consecutive 10-day contracts with the Dallas Mavericks. ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reports that the Mavs will sign Pinson to a two-way contract.

Cole Anthony, Orlando Magic guard
97–92 loss
at Detroit — Started; 36 minutes, 19 points, 5–18 FG, 3–12 3FG, 6–8 FT, 8 rebounds, 6 assists, 2 steals, 1 turnover, +5, 14.4 game score
Season statistics —
26 games, 20.2 points, 41.2 FG%, 34.8 3FG%, 85.7 FT%, 6.1 rebounds, 5.9 assists
Up next — 6 p.m. Sunday vs. Washington; 7 p.m. Wednesday at Washington
———————————————
Harrison Barnes, Sacramento Kings forward
Off Saturday
Season statistics
— 36 games, 16.3 points, 44.6 FG%, 41.8 3FG%, 83.2 FT%, 6.2 rebounds, 2.3 assists
Up next — 9 p.m. Sunday vs. Sacramento; 10 p.m. Monday vs. Cleveland
———————————————
Tony Bradley, Chicago Bulls center
Off Saturday
Season statistics — 24 games, 3.9 points, 58.9 FG%, 4.4 rebounds, 0.6 of an assist
Up next — 7:30 Sunday at Dallas; 8 p.m. Tuesday vs. Detroit
———————————————
Reggie Bullock, Dallas Mavericks guard/forward
Off Saturday
Season statistics —
32 games, 6.6 points, 37.7 FG%, 31.8 3P%, 76.5 FT%, 2.9 rebounds, 1.1 assists
Up next —
7:30 Sunday vs. Chicago; 7:30 Wednesday at New York, ESPN
———————————————
Ed Davis, Cleveland Cavaliers center
Off Saturday
Season statistics —
12 games, 1.6 points, 75.0 FG%, 16.7 FT%, 3.1 rebounds, 0.1 of an assist
Up next — 8:30 Sunday at Golden State, NBATV; 10 p.m. Monday at Sacramento
———————————————
Wayne Ellington, Los Angeles Lakers guard
Off Saturday
Season statistics —
27 games, 6.4 points, 38.7 FG%, 37.7 3FG%, 45 FT, 1.7 rebounds, 0.8 of an assist
Up next — 9:30 p.m. Sunday vs. Memphis; 10 p.m. Wednesday at Sacramento
———————————————
Danny Green, Philadelphia 76ers forward
Off Saturday
Season statistics — 27 games, 6.7 points, 40.8 FG%, 38.2 3FG%, 8–8 FT, 2.6 rebounds, 1.2 assists
Up next — 8 p.m. Monday at Houston; 7 p.m. Wednesday vs. Charlotte
———————————————
Justin Jackson, Phoenix Suns forward
123–100 loss
vs. Miami — 9 minutes, 5 points, 2–2 FG, 1–1 3FT, 2 rebounds, +4, 5.4 game score
NBA season statistics —
4 games, 3.8 points, 62.5% FG, 60% 3FG, 1.5 rebounds
G League season statistics for Texas Legends (Mavericks affiliate) — 10 games, 22.7 points, 47.3% FG, 41.4% 3FG, 79.2 FT%, 7.7 rebounds, 3.1 assists, 1.0 steals
Up next — 7:30 Tuesday at Toronto; 7 p.m. Friday at Indiana
———————————————
Cameron Johnson, Phoenix Suns wing
123–100 loss
vs. Miami — 32 minutes, 15 points, 4–13 FG, 3–10 3FG, 4–4 FT, 5 rebounds, 2 assists, -17, 10.4 game score
Season statistics —
39 games, 11.9 points, 45.8 FG%, 43.8 3FG%, 4.3 rebounds, 1.3 assists
Up next — 7:30 Tuesday at Toronto; 7 p.m. Friday at Indiana
———————————————
Nassir Little, Portland Trail Blazers wing
Off Saturday
Season statistics
33 games, 8.9 points, 45.9 FG%, 31.2 3P%, 70.1 FT%, 5.7 rebounds, 1.1 assists
Up next — 9 p.m. Sunday vs. Sacramento; 10 p.m. Monday vs. Brooklyn
———————————————
Theo Pinson, Dallas Mavericks guard
Off Saturday
NBA season statistics — 10 games, 2.5 points, 29.6 FG, 25.0 3FG, 4–4 FT, 1.6 rebounds, 1.2 assists
G League season statistics with Maine Celtics —
13 games, 15.1 points, 43.4 FG%, 40.6 3FG%, 88.5 FT%, 6.6 rebounds, 5.1 assists, 1.2 steals
Up next — 7:30 Sunday vs. Chicago; 7:30 Wednesday at New York, ESPN
———————————————
Day’Ron Sharpe, Brooklyn Nets center
Off Saturday
Season NBA statistics
12 games, 3.6 points, 62.1 FG%, 33.3% 3P%, 46.2% FT, 3.0 rebounds
Season G League statistics 4 games, 18.0 points, 47.8 FG%, 33.33P%, 85.7 FT%, 9.8 rebounds, 1.4 steals, 2.6 blocks
Up next — noon Sunday vs. San Antonio; 10 p.m. Monday at Portland
———————————————
Coby White, Chicago Bulls guard
Off Saturday
Season statistics —
18 games, 11.3 points, 44.5 FG%, 38.6 3P%, 2.6 rebounds, 2.4 assists
Up next — 7:30 Sunday at Dallas; 8 p.m. Tuesday vs. Detroit
———————————————

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