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Monday NBA grades: Chandler Parsons might be the Rockets’ third man

Jan 21, 2014, 2:52 AM EST

Portland Trail Blazers v Houston Rockets Getty Images

Our quick look around the NBA, or what you missed while watching… actually you should have been watching the NBA all day. There were great performances — such as Anthony Davis with 27 points and 10 rebounds, or Dwight Howard with 24 points and 12 boards — that don’t even make the cut here. The Association was the best entertainment going on Martin Luther King day.

source:  Chandler Parsons, Houston Rockets. Houston GM Daryl Morey said he thought the Rockets had the first two pieces of a title contender in James Harden and Dwight Howard, but they still needed piece No. 3. The next game, Parsons comes out drops 31 points on 12-of-19 shooting and had 10 rebounds and seven assists … message being sent? Parsons had 10 points in the first quarter when Houston went on a 21-6 run to take a lead they never gave up, and he was there with big shots to help stop Portland runs all night. Whether or not he’s this team’s No. 3, he is big for them.

source:   Miami Heat defense. You can say it is because they are tired, or because they are bored, or it’s because of injuries — the bottom line is Miami is playing terrible defense of late. They allowed the Hawks to shoot 51.9 percent on Monday and score 122.4 points per 100 possessions. In their last 10 games the Heat are allowing 107.6 points per 100, 5.2 higher than their season average and 23rd in the NBA in that stretch. Miami’s defense is different than most, rather than having a shot-blocking center in the paint to erase mistakes; they play a pressure defense that counts on energy and athleticism. Take your foot off the gas with that kind of defense and you get exposed. The Heat’s lack of energy shows on defense, and it shows on the scoreboard.

source:   Michael Carter-Williams, Philadelphia 76ers. MCW looked like the stud from the first month of the season Monday — 31 points on 22 shots, plus he had 5 assists. What seemed different was the frequency and determinations of his drives to the basket, he was aggressive and attacking again. Not that it was enough, the Sixers still lost to the Wizards. Still, good to see this Carter-Williams again.

source:   LaMarcus Aldridge, Portland Trail Blazers. He put up monster numbers that need to be mentioned here — 27 points and 20 rebounds. He wasn’t efficient (11-of-26 shooting) and he was part of some spotty Portland defense on the day (they gave up 126 points to the Rockets) still you have to give Aldridge credit for his numbers. He made some fantasy owners happy.

source:  D.J. Augustin, Chicago Bulls. Augustin — who was let go by the Pacers last season and waived by the Raptors this season — has played the best basketball of his career in the 19 games since joining the Bulls, and he was key in this one. Augustin had 11 points in the fourth quarter, then five in overtime to help give the Bulls a win over the Lakers (a win that pulls Chicago up to .500. Augustin finished the game with 27 points. Not bad for a cast off.

  1. davidly - Jan 21, 2014 at 7:22 AM

    A (+ and/or -)
    Chairmen of the Boards.
    Five guys had twenty or more rebounds last night. Joakim Noah grabbed 21 of Chicago’s 55 — 7 of their 19 offensive; Zach Randolph had ten at each end of the court for 20, but fell in Memphis to the Pelicans; Anderson Varejao’s 21 were not enough to overcome the Mavs in Cleveland; but DeAndre Jordan’s 21 were enough to help propel the reeling Clippers to a win in the other city on a great lake; LaMarcus Aldridge had 20 in the Blazers’ loss in Houston. Honorable mentions go to Noah’s counterpart, Pau Gasol and Bobcats Al Jefferson, who each had 19 in a loss and win, respectively.

    F-
    The court surface in Oakland — or was it the shoes?
    I seriously thought somebody was going to get hurt out there. The atmosphere in the second half was downright playoff-like, but the players were slipping all over the place. Commentators Marv Albert and Steve Kerr speculated at first that it might have been the logos, but as the game went on, it was clear that it was more than just those spots. The players were lucky to get out of their purple shoes with their limbs in tact.

  2. eagleseagleseagles - Jan 21, 2014 at 12:24 PM

    Great job on not posting anything about the wizards again. You guys are just wizard haters

    • skins51186 - Jan 23, 2014 at 11:05 AM

      You better not be talking about the Wiz if you’re an Eagles fan. That’s blasphemy and I don’t care that we’re crossing sports. Hopefully you’re just a big fan of the band or of the animal in general.

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