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Sunday night NBA grades: It’s Kevin Durant’s world we just live in it

Feb 10, 2014, 3:08 AM EST

New York Knicks v Oklahoma City Thunder Getty Images

Our quick look around the NBA, or what you missed while watching Jeopardy to see what all the Arthur Chu fuss is about….

source:  Kevin Durant, Oklahoma City Thunder. If you are going to win the MVP award you need a couple monster games on national television. Durant delivered that on Sunday — 41 points, 10 rebounds and nine assists as the Thunder beat the Knicks. Durant would have had a triple double if Serge Ibaka could have finished a dunk. Durand has seven 40-point games this season. He is your MVP, having pulled away in the race while Russell Westbrook has been out.

source:  Chris Paul, Los Angeles Clippers. He’s back. After missing 18 games with a separated shoulder CP3 was returned to the court in the Clippers powder blue (they wore the sleeved throwbacks). That’s not the reason the Clippers utterly destroyed the Sixers on Sunday night, but he did look solid with 7 points and 8 assists for Los Angeles. The Clippers went 12-6 without him and Blake Griffin among others stepped up their game, now can they take the next step with him in the lineup.

source:  Kyrie Irving, Cleveland Cavaliers. He certainly was making plays – 28 points on 17 shots, including the game-tying layup that sent the game to overtime, then he had four points in OT to lead the Cavs over the Grizzlies. He also had six assists. Still, I watch him play and I wonder how much better he would look in a different offense — he looks good, better than he did earlier in the season when he was forcing shots and plays, but he still doesn’t seem to be on the career trajectory expected of his this season (despite the fans voting him an All-Star starter). I just wonder how much of that is the offense he is playing in right now.

source:  Victor Oladipo, Orlando Magic. Orlando came from behind to upset the Pacers in large part because of the rookie — he had 12 of his team-high 23 points in the first minutes of the fourth quarter when the Magic went on a 17-2 run to come back and take the lead from a Pacers team that had been up 16 in the third quarter at one point. (To be fair, Indiana helped out that comeback with some uncharacteristic sloppy play, and when Orlando went smaller with Tobias Harris at the four the Pacers chose to settle for jumpers rather than attack.) What I really liked about Oladipo’s game is that he kept relentlessly attacking the rim — which resulted in him getting five shots blocked and shooting just 3-of-7 inside 8 feet, but he kept attacking. He plays with an aggressive energy that is infectious.

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  1. lakerade - Feb 10, 2014 at 4:06 AM

    OKC vs IND Finals, please. But no Bynum, please.

  2. greej1938l - Feb 10, 2014 at 8:24 AM

    I’d be okay with that!

  3. d10ballfan - Feb 10, 2014 at 9:52 AM

    What offense should Kyrie be playing in?

    He’s avg over 21 ppg, career high in assists and career low in turnovers. He’s also only 21. Would he play btr in Golden State’s system? Yes but so would every shooter.

  4. jbeagles23 - Feb 10, 2014 at 10:20 AM

    Unfortunately for you guys it will be a rematch of last years finals. Okc is a better team without Westbrook and Miami will find a way to beat Indy. And if the heat win home court I think that series ends in 5

    • unfrozencavemanlawyer2 - Feb 10, 2014 at 10:48 AM

      No chance. Indy in 6- no matter who has home court.

      • antistratfordian - Feb 10, 2014 at 3:12 PM

        The Pacers don’t have enough talent to beat the Heat in the playoffs.

  5. jimeejohnson - Feb 10, 2014 at 11:21 AM

    EvilEmpire: your Knicks made Durant look even better than he is.

    • money2long - Feb 10, 2014 at 11:59 AM

      how did lebron do against him ?

  6. unfrozencavemanlawyer2 - Feb 11, 2014 at 12:09 AM

    Stratfordian- I realize you are a Heat fan- and one of the chief Lebron defenders on this site- but even you don’t truly believe the Pacers can’t beat a tired, ageing, Heat team whose defense is much worse than last year in a seven game slugfest. As to their talent- Granger and Bynum come off the bench for Chrissake. Either way- we’ll know in late May- their show down in the Eastern finals is a fait accompli

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