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Nightly Grades 11.27.12: Beardsanity, Linsanity, and FloppyHairSanity

By Zach Harper | NBA writer
Beardsanity + Linsanity = Winsanity. (Getty Images)

Each night, Eye on Basketball brings you what you need to know about the games of the NBA. From great performances to terrible clock management the report card evaluates and eviscerates the good, the bad, and the ugly from the night that was.

The Lin-Harden backcourtThe Rockets' starting backcourt had probably their best game together as a duo so far this season. Both players scored efficiently and both players carved up the defense by finding open teammates. James Harden's 24 points on 9-of-19 shooting with 12 assists and Jeremy Lin's 16 points on 7-of-9 shooting with 10 assists kept the Raptors one rotation slow all night long. The only thing you would have liked for them to do better is get fouls drawn agains the Raptors. They combined for just five free throw attempts.
Anderson VarejaoIt's hard to ask Anderson Varejao to do more than he already has for this team. And he probably deserves his own post, rather than a nice grade in this table. For now, let's just praise him a bit here. Varejao had 20 points on 10-of-15 shooting and 18 rebounds. It was his fifth game of the season with at least 18 rebounds. There isn't any reason for opposing teams to not throw two guys to box him out and he's still grabbing all of the boards.
Kevin LoveFour games back into the season and Kevin Love had himself a good one. He scored 23 points and grabbed 24 rebounds (game-high in the NBA this season) for his 16th 20-20 game of his career. Love helped Minnesota end possessions by grabbing 21 defensive rebounds and he rotated well on defense. He also delivered the dagger for the game when he threw up a fadeaway, circus, shot put attempt with the Wolves up four and 26 seconds left. Wolves snapped their five-game losing streak.
Evan TurnerEvan Turner might be starting to get what his role is and how to execute it. In two of the last three games, he's had incredibly efficient nights on the floor. And even in the game sandwiched in between, he found a way to make a lot of plays on a poor night. Tuesday night, he torched the Mavs for 20 points on 8-of-12 shooting. He is now averaging 21.3 points on 52.3 percent shooting his last three games.
The Raptors' defenseThe Toronto Raptors are supposed to be learning how to become a defensive-minded team under Dwane Casey, but they got torched by the Houston Rockets Tuesday night. Houston made 53 percent of their shots, 50 percent of their 3-pointers and had 30 assists on 44 made shots. They also had 21 fast break points. Toronto might want to at least make the game uglier from a physical standpoint.
Lakers-Pacers gameDoes it even matter that this game was close? Unless everybody caught Kobe's flu right before tip-off, I can't fathom how this became such an unwatchable game right from the start. Both teams combined to shoot 34.1 percent from the field, 21.2 percent from the 3-point line, 57.1 percent from the free throw line and turned the ball over 38 times. Gross.
Any Cleveland Cavalier not named Anderson VarejaoKyrie Irving, it's gotten so bad without you. Anderson Varejao is out there a lone. He needs you. The viewers of Cavs games need you. Heal up and please become a superhero that doesn't get hurt. Signed, Basketball fans.
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