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.
Kemba Walker back. Michael Kidd-Gilchrist back. Al Jefferson worked into the offense. The Bobcats combined an absolutely brilliant defensive performance with Jefferson's absolute dominance over Andrew Bogut and housed the Warriors in their own joint.
The Cats don't have a true rim protector on the roster (apologies to Bismack Biyombo) but do a tremendous job in the paint. Look at the Warriors' numbers down low.
That's great work. Throw in some great offensive work here and there but not overall, and you've got a stellar win for Charlotte. Oh, and Josh McRoberts just did this:
You can spin this two ways, and either of them take the sting off this. 1. The Warriors just missed shots they usually make. I don't tend to subscribe to that against what is a pestering, well-disciplined defense, but it could be. 2. They combined an off night with a defense well-geared to stop them. The Bobcats do something especially well and that's control pace. They don't let you run and when the Warriors don't run, they still struggle offensively.
Defensively is another issue, as they really tend to struggle against even bad offenses like Charlotte that work hard for their points (because they had to), but they still held them to 91 points.
This wasn't as bad of a defense as it seems, it's just still a bad loss.
It still doesn't feel like they're firing on all cylinders, but they hit the Hawks with that third quarter haymaker of theirs and that was all she wrote. They did hold the Hawks to a 90.8 offensive rating, which is stellar.
Lance Stephenson came down with an injury on a scary fall but it seems like he'll be OK.
David West gets lost in the shuffle too often, and he was the monster for Atlanta Tuesday. He absolutely destroyed them with push shots and rebounds. When he gets going like this, there's not much you can do to withstand it.
They don't have the weapons to hang with Indiana when their defense is engaged, but they stuck around for a while.
Steve Nash played! So that was adorable and good to see. Manny Harris, on the last night of his time with the Lakers, dropped 19 points. Nick Young had 24 but also played terrible defense and shot 4-of-12.
Other than that, your standard Lakers loss.
Kevin Love got hit in the head and clearly was suffering with a headache. He then got whacked, landed on his tailbone and head and it looked really bad. He got up, hit the free throws, and finished 31 points. That dude's a monster and needs more credit for his toughness.
Meanwhile, Kevin Martin lit them up and Love actually played really great defense. I know, I'm shocked, too.
It was ten, but it didn't feel like that. Great win.
They just knew how to attack the Suns and took it to them. Not a lot of teams work harder than Phoenix. Chicago does, and that was enough on Tuesday.
Easy to forget that the Suns are young. Young teams get worked by defensive squads like Chicago. The Suns just couldn't score inside. Taj Gibson vanquished them.