Your nightly report card gives you a big picture look at what happened each night in the NBA. Grades are granted based on team or individual performances, and are graded on a curve for each element. Leave your own grades in the comments.
Memphis GrizzliesThe Memphis Grizzlies have had a turbulent start to their season, losing franchise forward Zach Randolph to injury and shaking up their roster in an attempt to compensate for the loss. Their 4-6 record indicates there have been plenty of struggles but they put on a pretty face for a national television audience on Thursday, drop-kicking the Knicks and leaving no doubt in a 94-83 victory. Rudy Gay led the way with 26 points on 16 shots, and while Memphis didn't shoot the lights out they scored at will when they needed to. Given New York's effort level recently, scrappers like Tony Allen (12 points, 5 rebounds, 5 steals) and Marc Gasol (10 points, 12 rebounds, 5 assists, 4 blocks) were free to have a field day.
Timberwolves point guard Ricky Rubio easily. Instead, he toils away for a forgotten Cleveland Cavaliers team that just happens to be at .500 after the first ten games of the season. He's been called mature, efficient and intellignet, but on Thursday he showed he was fearless, too, taking the game to Steve Nash in Phoenix to finish with 26 pointes, 6 assists and 2 steals. His 11-17 shooting helped compensate for the 6 turnovers. Irving is currently off to the best start of any rookie point guard in recent memory.
smashing a 49-year-old NBA record, and added 1 blocks and 4 steals to his absurd stat line. Orlando didn't play nearly as crisply against the Warriors as they did in beating the Blazers the night before, but Howard's monster night ensured Orlando earned its third straight win to start a 4-game road trip, 117-109.
Bucks, capped by a career-high 15 points in a 102-93 win over the Detroit Pistons. No basket was bigger than a late dunk in traffic that helped seal the win. Milwaukee didn't draw many fans on Thursday, but those who were there were on their feet to salute his all-around play. Leuer finished with 6 rebounds, 5 assists and 2 blocks. Call this a hearty B+.
Bobcats got drilled by the Atlanta Hawks, 111-81, in the first game that Atlanta played without key big man Al Horford. Hawks coach Larry Drew inserted Zaza Pachulia into his starting lineup and played his starters heavy minutes. Diaw might as well not have shown up, finishing with zero points and 6 rebounds, all defensive, in 26 minutes.