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SPORTS

Key Moments of the NBA Season, from the Championship Rings to the Postseason Field Being Set

A look at some of the key moments in the 2023-24 NBA regular season:

Oct. 24 — The Denver Nuggets get their championship rings, raise the NBA title banner and defeat the Los Angeles Lakers 119-107 in the first game of the season. Nikola Jokic scores 29 points and grabs 13 rebounds.

Oct. 25 — Victor Wembanyama scores 15 points in his much-hyped NBA debut, but he and the San Antonio Spurs fall to the Dallas Mavericks 126-119.

Oct. 28 — Zach LaVine gets the first 50-point game of the season, scoring a career-high 51 in Chicago’s 118-102 loss to Detroit.

Oct. 31 — James Harden gets his wish and is traded out of Philadelphia, being sent to the Los Angeles Clippers.

Nov. 9 — Milwaukee’s Giannis Antetokounmpo scores a then-season-high 54 points, but the Bucks fall to Indiana 126-124.

Nov. 14 — Golden State’s Draymond Green grabs Minnesota’s Rudy Gobert around the neck in an on-court altercation, gets ejected and is suspended for five games the following day.

Dec. 9 — Anthony Davis scores 41 points and grabs 20 rebounds, and the Los Angeles Lakers beat the Indiana Pacers 123-109 in the championship game of the league’s inaugural In-Season Tournament at Las Vegas.

Dec. 12 — Draymond Green is ejected from a game in Phoenix for striking the Suns’ Jusuf Nurkic in the face, the latest entry in a series of questionable acts. A day later, Green is suspended indefinitely and winds up missing 16 games before playing again. The suspension was lifted after 12 games.

Dec. 13 — Giannis Antetokounmpo sets the season-high once again, scoring 64 points in Milwaukee’s 140-126 win over Indiana.

Dec. 25 — Dallas’ Luka Doncic scores 50 points in the Mavericks’ 128-114 win at Phoenix. It’s the fourth 50-point game on Christmas in NBA history, joining Bernard King (60 in 1984), Rick Barry (50 in 1966) and Wilt Chamberlain (59 in 1961).

Dec. 30 — The Detroit Pistons end their NBA record-tying losing streak at 28 games with a 129-127 victory over the Toronto Raptors. Detroit hadn’t won in two months, tied the Philadelphia 76ers’ record of 28 consecutive losses and finished one shy of the record for the four major American and Canadian leagues, set by the Chicago Cardinals during World War II.

Jan. 9 — Erik Spoelstra and the Miami Heat agree on an eight-year, $120 million extension, the richest in total value ever given to an NBA coach.

Jan. 17 — Golden State Warriors assistant coach Dejan Milojević, a mentor to two-time NBA MVP Nikola Jokic and a former star player in his native Serbia, dies after a heart attack. Milojević, part of the staff that helped the Warriors win the 2022 NBA championship, was 46.

Jan. 22 — Joel Embiid scores 70 points in Philadelphia’s 133-123 win over San Antonio, on the same night that Minnesota’s Karl-Anthony Towns scores 62 in the Timberwolves’ 128-125 loss to Charlotte. It was the fourth day in NBA history when two players scored at least 60 points, the first since were April 9, 1978.

Jan. 23 — Despite a 30-13 record to that point, Milwaukee fires coach Adrian Griffin barely halfway through his first season. The Bucks hired Doc Rivers three days later.

Jan. 26 — Luka Doncic scores 73 points in Dallas’ 148-143 win over Atlanta and Phoenix’s Devin Booker scores 62 in the Suns’ 133-131 loss to Phoenix. After Joel Embiid and Karl-Anthony Towns did something — scoring 60 on the same day — that the NBA hadn’t seen in 45 years, Doncic and Booker matched the feat a mere four days later.

Feb. 3 — Golden State’s Stephen Curry scores 60 points in the Warriors’ 141-134 loss to Atlanta. It’s the second 60-point game of Curry’s career.

Feb. 17 — All-Star Saturday in Indianapolis is highlighted by Stephen Curry narrowly edging WNBA star Sabrina Ionescu in a 3-point contest.

Feb. 18 — Damian Lillard of the Milwaukee Bucks scores 39 points to win MVP honors and the Eastern Conference beats the Western Conference 211-186 in the highest-scoring All-Star Game in NBA history. The total points of 397 smashed the record of 374 set in 2017, while the East made 42 3-pointers to break the mark of 35 set by Team LeBron in 2019.

Feb. 19 — Brooklyn fires coach Jacque Vaughn.

Feb. 23 — Golden State agrees with coach Steve Kerr on a two-year extension, which coincides with the remaining time on Stephen Curry’s contract with the Warriors.

March 2 — With a second-quarter layup, the Los Angeles Lakers’ LeBron James reaches the 40,000-point mark for his regular-season career.

March 12 — Jamahl Mosley and the Orlando Magic agree on a contract extension that will keep the coach there through the 2027-28 season.

March 25 — The NBA confirms that it opened an investigation into Toronto two-way player Jontay Porter amid gambling allegations. Porter does not play for the rest of the season.

March 29 — New York’s Jalen Brunson scores 61 points, taking 47 shots from the field, in the Knicks’ 130-126 loss to San Antonio. Victor Wembanyama has 40 points and 20 rebounds in the same game.

April 1 — Phoenix’s Devin Booker scored 52 points in a 124-111 win over New Orleans. It’s Booker’s third game of 50 or more points in a span of 2 1/2 months.

April 3 — Detroit’s Malachi Flynn scores 50 points off the bench in the Pistons’ 121-113 loss to Atlanta. It’s the third 50-point game by a reserve in at least 40 years; Jamal Crawford (2019) and Nick Anderson (1993) had the others.

April 3 — Charlotte coach Steve Clifford announces he will step down at the end of the season.

April 7 — Philadelphia’s Tyrese Maxey gets his league-high-tying third game of 50 or more points this season, joining Booker and Embiid in that club. Maxey scores 52 in a 133-126 win over San Antonio.

April 9 — Minnesota’s Anthony Edwards scores 51 points in a 130-121 win over Washington.

April 14 — The NBA regular season closes with 15 of the 20 postseason spots decided all in one afternoon. Boston and Oklahoma City claim the No. 1 seeds for the playoffs. Excluding the 10 teams that were eliminated from contention, only Boston, Chicago, Atlanta, the Los Angeles Clippers and Dallas knew their postseason fates entering the final day.

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By TIM REYNOLDS AP Basketball Writer

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