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Nightly Grades: Hawks stun the Heat, Nets rip the Knicks

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.

AThe Hawks just won't quit. Especially in their building. With an impressive 121-114 win over the Heat, the Hawks went to 15-6 at home, got two games clear of .500. Paul Millsap was monstrous and the Hawks made plenty of plays down the stretch to hold on. Yeah, the Heat might not have been all that interested, but who cares. The Hawks played great and won a big game.
AOne team in New York is starting to go places, the other is in a straight tailspin. But let's focus on the winner here, who basically put th game away within the first 12 minutes and cruised to an easy 103-80 win behind 25 from Joe Johnson. And here's something else about this Nets team that was previously unthinkable: They're kind of fun right now.
AWith a win over the 76ers, they're back to .500. The previous three times they've tried to break over the hump, they've lost. And they haven't been above that mark since 2009 when they were 2-1.
ASome nights the Rockets look awfully good. This was one of those nights as they torched the Blazers 126-113 behin 31-10-7 from Chandler Parsons.
BHey, they beat the East's third place team (heading into tonight). That's something. Even if it was the Raptors.
BJimmy Butler probably wants to give Taj Gibson a hug right now. With an overtime game-winner, Gibson spared Butler another potential 60-minute game as the Bulls escaped the Lakers in a mere single extra frame.
DIt's not that the Raptors losing to the Bobcats is all that bad of a loss as much as it is a reminder that this team isn't all that great and that they're still going to lose apparently winnable games.
DThe Trail Blazers have been on an impressive five-game streak with back-to-back wins over the Spurs and Mavericks, so really, blame their loss in Houston tonight on the schedule. Still, it wasn't all that great of a showing, and continued to reveal major defensive issues that they have.
FThe Grizzlies fell back to .500 with a 95-92 loss to the Pelicans. They just can't quite figure it all out quite yet.
FAny time now. Annnnnnny time now.
FFour straight losses, this one to their crosstown rival in embarrassing fashion. Yikes.
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