Scratching & Surviving: Nets 107, Mavericks 106 (GAME GRADES)


Jason Terry POINT GUARD

Two borderline travels aside, hey look, some made shots!

Paul Pierce POWER FORWARD

He’s a weirdly good dunker for a 36-year-old that has never relied on his athleticism. Hit two free throws that could’ve sealed the game with 20 seconds left before bricking his next two. An all-around good game before that moment.

Shaun Livingston POINT GUARD

Liked him next to Deron Williams as usual but not much to speak of from him tonight.

Andrei Kirilenko SMALL FORWARD

Hit the two game-clinching free throws with 5.3 seconds left despite struggling from the line all season. That earns an A.

Besides that:Stuck to Dirk Nowitzki immediately upon entering the game, though some loose possessions forced them to switch. Though he did occasionally draw Carter as his man in the third quarter and in crunch time, he did an admirable job guarding Dallas’s best offensive player in his brief stretches. Also love how he runs the floor and his Deron Williams connection. But that jump shot…

Kevin Garnett POWER FORWARD

Came out hitting two midrange shots, the second a tough fadeaway with the shot clock working against him. His defense looked a step slow on a couple of possessions, but picked up a quick double-double by his exit in the third quarter. Came back near the end for defensive purposes and intensity purposes. Smartly threw the ball in the air with 0.6 seconds left to seal the deal.

Alan Anderson SHOOTING GUARD

Is most effective when he’s playing defense and making shots. He, um, played some defense. Kidd switched him in on the last play of regulation to guard Jose Calderon, so that speaks well for him.

Deron Williams POINT GUARD

Came off the bench for the third straight game and played starter’s minutes for the third straight game. Looked quick, got to the rim effectively. Made one fun circus shot in the fourth quarter that had no business going in. Was on the receiving end of some questionable calls against Devin Harris, but he’ll take them. Took one bad shot in crunch time, but overall his best game since returning from his ankle treatment.

Joe Johnson SHOOTING GUARD

A quiet night from Johnson, who the Nets have begun pumping up as their All-Star candidate. You’d think that they’d look to get him more shots, considering that he’s their only shot at representation in the game. But they also didn’t really need him, considering their offense otherwise.

Andray Blatche POWER FORWARD

Had two beautifully Blatche moments pulling off the crossover-stepback jumper. He apparently thinks corner 3’s are a thing for him now, which, okay.

Mirza Teletovic POWER FORWARD

Deep in the wilderness below Barclays Center, a group of men were found unconscious, shivering under singed herringbone. Each man bore identical clothes: tattered basketball shorts, a once-blue undershirt now stained with blood, each with three particular, intentional slices through the chest.

Upon discovery, one of the men, sporting a light goatee and burnt purple sneakers, rose feebly from the wreckage, uttering one weak but unmistakable word:

“…Fearza.”