Tar Heels in NBA: Johnson nets 15 in Suns win but leaves with cramps; Bullock, White each score 10; Anthony out sick

By R.L. Bynum

Season one as an NBA starter began well for Cameron Johnson after missing most of the preseason with a right thumb injury.

It was going fine with 15 points and three 3-pointers in the Phoenix Suns’ 107–105 come-from-behind home victory Wednesday over the Dallas Mavericks before he left the game with nearly 10 minutes remaining in the game because of cramping and didn’t return.

While he was in, he had quite an impact as the Suns rallied from a 22-point deficit to win, their largest rally in a victory since 2017. His 15-foot jumper just before leaving the game trimmed Phoenix’s deficit to 10. Johnson scored eight points and two 3-pointers in the third quarter when Phoenix outscored Dallas 31–19.

Johnson played an excellent all-around game with three rebounds and two blocks.

Reggie Bullock scored 10 points and three 3-pointers to go with two rebounds and an assist for the Mavericks. He scored six of those points and two of those 3-pointers in the third quarter.

Theo Pinson didn’t play for Dallas (coach’s decision).


Coby White played 25 minutes off the bench in Chicago’s 116–108 win at Miami, scoring 10 points and two 3-pointers with two rebounds and a steal. Tony Bradley didn’t play for the Bulls (coach’s decision).


Harrison Barnes had nine points, eight rebounds, four assists and a block, but that wasn’t enough for Sacramento as the Kings lost at home to the Portland Trail Blazers 115–108.

There was preseason talk that Nassir Little might start for the Blazers. Not only did he not start, but he also had a frustrating opener, playing 10 scoreless minutes, missing his only two shots — both 3-point attempts — with two rebounds, one assist and a steal.


Walker Kessler had a double-double with 12 points and 10 rebounds in NBA debut for Utah, a 123–102 home Jazz victory over Denver. In 24 minutes, he made all five field-goal attempts with a steal and an assist.

He’s the first player in NBA history to record a double-double and shoot 100% from the floor in his rookie debut.


Day’Ron Sharpe had four points, eight rebounds, two steals and an assist in 23 minutes of the Brooklyn Nets’ 130–108 home loss to the New Orleans Pelicans.


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Cole Anthony missed Orlando’s opener at Detroit, ruled out 30 minutes before the start of the Magic’s 113–109 loss at Detroit because of an illness. The team lists him as questionable for Friday’s game at Atlanta.


Justin Jackson was one of four Boston reserves who didn’t play in the Celtics’ 126–117 home victory Tuesday over Philadelphia.


Memphis opened its season Wednesday at home with a 115–112 overtime victory against New York. As will be the case most of this season, you didn’t see Danny Green play. He is recovering from knee surgery to repair a torn ACL. But you will see him on ESPN for 15 appearances as an analyst.

“When I’m done playing, it’s something that I always wanted to venture out into,” Green told the Memphis Commercial Appeal. “This an opportunity to build a resume and can get some reps.”

He would follow other former UNC players who have taken media jobs such as Kenny Smith, Vince Carter, Brad Daugherty and Brendan Haywood.

Cole Anthony, Orlando Magic guard

Age 22, 6–3, 185, third NBA season

113–109 Wednesday loss at Detroit — Didn’t play; was ruled out less than 30 minutes before the game because of illness.
Next games — 7:30 Friday at Atlanta; 7 p.m. Saturday vs. Boston
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Harrison Barnes, Sacramento Kings forward

Age 30, 6–8, 225, 11th NBA season

115–108 Wednesday loss vs. Portland — Started; 31 minutes, 9 points, 4–8 FG, 0–2 3FG, 1–2 FT, 8 rebounds, 4 assists, 1 block, 1 turnover, 2 fouls, -6, 9.1 game score
Next games 10 p.m. Saturday vs. L.A. Clippers; 8:30 Sunday at Golden State
———————————————

Tony Bradley, Chicago Bulls center

Age 24, 6–10, 248, sixth NBA season

116–108 Wednesday win at Miami — Didn’t play (coach’s decision)
Next games 7 p.m. Friday at Washington; 8 p.m. Saturday vs. Cleveland
———————————————

Reggie Bullock, Dallas Mavericks small forward

Age 31, 6–6, 205, 10th NBA season

107–105 Wednesday loss at Phoenix — Started; 30 minutes, 10 points, 3–6 FG, 3–5 3FG, 1–1 FT, 2 rebounds, 1 assist, 2 turnovers, 3 fouls, -11, 5.1 game score
Next games 8:30 Saturday vs. Memphis, NBATV; 7:30 Tuesday at New Orleans, TNT
———————————————

Justin Jackson, Boston Celtics forward

Age 27, 6–8, 220, sixth NBA season

126–117 Tuesday win vs. Philadelphia — Didn’t play (coach’s decision)
Next games — 7:30 Friday at Miami, ESPN; 7 p.m. Saturday at Orlando
———————————————

Cameron Johnson, Phoenix Suns power forward

Age 26, 6–8, 210, fourth NBA season

107–105 Wednesday win vs. Dallas — Started; 27 minutes, 15 points, 6–13 FG, 3–6 3FG, 3 rebounds, 2 blocks, 2 fouls, -3, 9.8 game score
Next games 10 p.m. Friday at Portland; 10 p.m. Sunday at L.A. Clippers, NBATV
———————————————

Walker Kessler, Utah Jazz center

Age 21, 7–0, 245, rookie NBA season

123–102 Wednesday win vs. Denver — 24 minutes, 12 points, 5–5 FG, 2–6 FT, 10 rebounds, 1 assist, 1 steal, 1 turnover, +12, 12.6 game score
Next games 8 p.m. Friday at Minnesota; 7 p.m. Sunday at New Orleans
———————————————

Nassir Little, Portland Trail Blazers small forward

Age 22, 6–5, 220, fourth NBA season

115–108 Wednesday win at Sacramento — 10 minutes, 0 points, 0–2 FG, 0–2 3FG, 0–2 FT, 2 rebounds, 1 assist 1 steal, +5, 0.1 game score
Next games 10 p.m. Friday vs. Phoenix; 3:30 Sunday at L.A. Lakers
———————————————

Theo Pinson, Dallas Mavericks guard

Age 26, 6–5, 212, fifth NBA season

107–105 Wednesday loss at Phoenix — Didn’t play (coach’s decision)
Next games 8:30 Saturday vs. Memphis, NBATV; 7:30 Tuesday at New Orleans, TNT
———————————————

Day’Ron Sharpe, Brooklyn Nets center

Age 20 (turns 21 on Nov. 6), 6–9, 265, second NBA season

130–108 Wednesday loss vs. New Orleans — 23 minutes, 4 points, 1–8 FG, 0–1 3FG, 2–2 FT, 8 rebounds, 1 assist, 2 steals, 2 blocks, 4 fouls, -10, 5.7 game score
Next games 7:30 Friday vs. Toronto; 8 p.m. Monday at Memphis
———————————————

Coby White, Chicago Bulls guard

Age 22, 6–4, 195, fourth NBA season

116–108 Wednesday win at Miami — 25 minutes, 10 points, 4–11 FG, 2–7 3FG, 2 rebounds, 1 steal, 1 turnover, 3 fouls, +/- of 0, 3.3 game score
Next games 7 p.m. Friday at Washington; 8 p.m. Saturday vs. Cleveland
———————————————
Injured
Memphis forward Danny Green will miss most of the season recovering from surgery to repair a torn ACL and LCL in his left knee suffered in May.

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