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Nightly Grades: Pacers outlast the Knicks, Bobcats cook the Nets

By Royce Young | NBA writer

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.

TeamGradeAnalysis
AUh oh, NBA. They're revving up it seems. A casual 120-92 beatdown of the Magic without Dwyane Wade where 12 players scored and five finished in double-figures.
AThe Mavs outscored the Rockets 36-19 in the fourth quarter to pull off a fairly stunning comeback, led by Dirk Nowitzki and Monta Ellis combined for a ridiculous 72 points on an even more ridiculous 26-38 shooting. WHAT.
AReally impressive road win for the Clippers against the Timberwolves. They closed the game strong, got stops and scored in the halfcourt. The Wolves have been dangerous in Minnesota, and the Clippers have been inconsistent on the road, but they pulled off what might be their best win of the season. Unfortunately for them, their back-to-back finishes with the Thunder in OKC on Thursday.
AJust a shoutout to Anthony Davis for this line tonight against the Jazz: 22 points on 9-12 shooting, nine rebounds, four assists and eight blocks.
A-Before the season, a win over the Nets looked like it would've been something pretty special, but the Bobcats basically did what they were supposed to do, taking down Brooklyn, 95-91. But get this: The Bobcats are now 6-6, and with the disaster the back end of the East is, are looking like a playoff team.
B+Tall Paul George, y'all. That dude isn't a star. He's a superstar. He knocked down three clutch free throws to force overtime, then went to the midrange to ice the Knicks in overtime. A really good road win, because the Knicks were playing with that dangerous kind of desperation. But the Pacers held up, and finished the job to improve on the league's best record.
C-That's a fifth straight home loss and they've fallen to 3-8 on the season. But the effort and performance against the Pacers was far better, and pretty encouraging. That's an outstanding Pacers team that is playing spectacular defense. And even with Carmelo Anthony and Andrea Bargnani combining to shoot 14-44, yet they were a dumb Iman Shumpert foul away from winning it.
DThe Clippers are good, so it's not the worst thing in the world to lose to them. But this was a big opportunity for the Timberwolves to make a little Western Conference statement, and they could hold off Chris Paul. Close game, very much up in the air into the final minutes, but the Clippers closed, and the Wolves looked a little lost in crunchtime.
FSigh. Just a loud, long, drawn out sigh.
FSo the Jazz losing isn't a big shock (they're 1-12 now after falling to the Pelicans). But the crazy thing is, Gordon Hayward did worse than his own team's record, throwing up a 1-for-17 shooting night. That's one make, and 17 misses. (He did have 10 assists, though.)
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