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News » Court Awareness: Tuesday review

Court Awareness: Tuesday review

Court Awareness: Tuesday review

Heat 94, Wizards 87

The Wizards were able to fight back in the fourth quarter and get themselves in contention for their second victory of the season. Then, as if on cue, three late turnovers sealed the deal for the Heat in D.C. As Washington fell to 1-7 on the season, fans can only stay positive by looking forward to the return of Gilbert Arenas.

But can Agent Zero deliver solace for the Washington Wizards?

Bleacher Report

Arenas is in serious risk of becoming the next Penny Hardaway. After having his third knee operation in less than two years, Arenas will no doubt lack the speed and explosive capacity the NBA has come to know him by. Even worse, Arenas has a tendency to rush back from these serious injuries, putting himself at risk of re-aggravation.

All is not lost for Arenas, however. Hardaway played for a decade after his 1997 left-knee injury, but he had to adjust his game from a dynamic scoring point guard to a role-playing wing. Although this may walk the line of worst-case scenario, it's still something for the Wizards, fans and Adidas to think about -- especially considering Hardaway was Arenas' favorite player growing up.

Miami, at 5-5, is 5-0 when they've held their opponents to under 100 points, a key stat for coach Erik Spoelstra. It was their second consecutive win this year against the Wizards.

The Heat will have to recover quickly for a matchup with Toronto in Miami on Wednesday night. Toronto has only broken the 100-point mark in regulation once this season, on Nov. 16, against Miami.

Magic 103, Raptors 90

The Magic and Raptors have the most prolific big men in the East not named Kevin Garnett. But Dwight Howard struggled with foul trouble all game, and eventually fouled out with 18 points, nine rebounds, and three blocks. Despite his struggles, he put in an above average effort from the free throw line, shooting 8-for-11.

In a losing effort for the Raptors, Chris Bosh outshined his Olympic counterpart with 40 points on 14-for-19 shooting and 18 rebounds. The other notable big, Jermaine O'Neal, grabbed 10 rebounds, marking the second time Bosh and O'Neal have both had double-digit rebound efforts in the same game.

The Raptors missed Jose Calderon, as replacement-starter Will Solomon had seven turnovers and only four assists. Calderon averages just 1.8 turnovers per game this season, and 1.5 per game over his career.

Michael Pietreus was out with bruised ribs, which opened the door for J.J. Redick's first NBA start. The former Wooden Award winner and Naismith College Player of the Year scored 10 points and didn't commit a turnover in 34 minutes of play. For most of the game, Redick was given the job of shadowing Jason Kapono, a player who Redick's NBA career could quite possibly resemble.

Cavaliers 106, Nets 82

With Tuesday's win over the Nets, LeBron James has led the Cavs to eight-straight wins, further solidifying his lead in the MVP race. During the streak King James has averaged 33.75 points and shot 50.8 percent from the field. His 31 points, eight rebounds, and four assists were almost mundane, considering the monstrous numbers he's put up recently.

The James Gang has done a great job of supporting their leader, too. Mo Williams has been nearly perfect at 25-for-26 from the stripe, and Delonte West has shot 51.4 percent from behind the arc during the streak.

The Cavs will have to re-focus after the easy victory, as they host Allen Iverson and the Detroit Pistons Wednesday night.

Lakers 116, Bulls 109

Led by 34 points from Pau Gasol, the Lakers cruised to their eighth win of the season in an educational experience for the young Chicago Bulls. In an interview after the game, Gasol fed Chris Webber, Gary Payton, and Ahmad Rashad a platter of cliches -- a sign that the Lakers are still hungry, and primed for a title.

Lakers games feel like a big party, or a music video if you will. The team is having a ton of fun playing, and they are defining what it means to be a team. Kobe Bryant is visibly elated when his teammates are successful. Lamar Odom is learning he doesn't need to start to play hard and help his team.

Not even the Boston Celtics look this confident and comfortable out on the court. Phil Jackson has been criticized on his in-game coaching ability, but his effect on the Lakers psyche is much more meaningful then any inbound play could ever be.

Mavericks 100, Bobcats 83

The Bobcats are marginal with Jason Richardson, but without their star they are miserable. While the former Slam Dunk Champion is out with a knee injury, Charlotte has relied heavily on a Raymond Felton-D.J Augustin backcourt that measures up to 12 feet on a good day.

Although Augustin played well, scoring 21 points, the size deficit and general lack of talent on the Bobcats got Charlotte into a 28-10 first-quarter deficit.

Jason Kidd did not attempt a shot until 4:15 in the fourth quarter, when the game had already been decided. It would have been the first time in his career he did not attempt a shot. Kidd always plays hard, but he continues to put up bizarre stat-lines every night.

For more from this Bleacher Report writer, click here.

Author: Fox Sports
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Added: November 19, 2008


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