NBA

This Date in NBA History (Dec. 8, IST): Steve Nash and Jason Kidd duel takes centre stage in Suns-Nets 2OT thriller

On Dec. 8 in 2006, Steve Nash and Jason Kidd balled out in one of the greatest point guard duels of all-time.

The game itself, which the Phoenix Suns won 161-157, was one for the record books. The combined points total of 318 is the fifth-most in NBA history.

Nash recorded a game-high 42 points to go along with his 14 assists and six rebounds on the efficient shooting splits of .640/.857/.800. The game figures aside, the reigning MVP came up huge for the Suns.

He scored nine of the team's 18 points in the second extra session including the pair of clutch free-throws that sealed the contest. And that's not all. If it wasn't for his game-tying, overtime-forcing 3, the Suns might have lost the game in regulation.

"It was a crazy game," said Nash. "They decided to run with us tonight. Both teams deserved to win. We were lucky to come out on top."

The Canadian received plenty of help from his teammates as the rest of the starters chipped in with valuable contributions - Raja Bell scored 24 points, Shawn Marion contributed across the board with 33 points, nine rebounds, three assists, three steals and two blocks, while the duo of Amar'e Stoudemire (23 points, 11 rebounds) and Boris Diaw (16 points, 14 assists) registered double-doubles.

Meanwhile, for the Nets, Kidd led the way with a triple-double of 38 points, 14 rebounds and 14 assists. This game tied him with Wilt Chamberlain for third-most triple-doubles in NBA history.

Despite these figures, it was his key turnover in the final seconds of the second overtime period that cost the Nets the game. It was a possession where the team could have tied the game to force a triple-overtime instead coming up with a loss.

Kidd even missed a chance to wrap up the in the first overtime when he missed a 19-foot jumper which would have been the game-winner.

The Nets bench outscored their counterparts 51-23, while the duo of Richard Jefferson (25 points, eight assists) and Vince Carter (31 points, nine assists) were the key players to help Kidd.

"For the NBA it was one of those games they would like to see more often," Kidd said. "You know, guys were playing hard. It was a clean game, a lot of points, but it came down the last couple of minutes of each quarter, and it probably will be a classic."

"I think we can go home and turn on Classic NBA," Suns head coach Mike D'Antoni said after the game. "It will be on there already. That's the best game I have ever seen."

Other notable events on Dec. 8

  • In 1948, the Indianapolis Jets beat the Washington Capitols 94-78. The loss snapped the Capitols' NBA-record 15-game winning streak to start the season, a mark later tied by the 1993-94 Houston Rockets.
  • In 1994, the Philadelphia 76ers defeated the Miami Heat 111-102 behind Jeff Malone's 34 points. The win helped the franchise become only the third in NBA history to record 2,000 wins.

Recent game-winning buzzer-beaters on Dec. 8

Monta Ellis vs. Portland Trail Blazers in 2013

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