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Notes from Wednesday's games in the National Basketball Association ...

• Midnight In The Garden Of Good And Evil. We've always liked the name Rip. Rip Torn, Dash Riprock, Jack the Ripper ... all aces in our book. That's why we watched with interest as Rip Hamilton (given name Richard) turned in a 51-point effort for the Detroit Pistons on Wednesday. But it wasn't enough, as the Knicks somehow coaxed this one in triple overtime, where of course they are unbeatable, prevailing 151-145 at Madison Square Garden. Channing Frye forced the third overtime with a buzzer-beating jumper, making us wonder why Isiah from now on doesn't just call the first quarter "the first overtime," and go from there.

• Manos: The Hand Of Fate. We love a good rivalry, but the Bulls and Heat? Tough to wrap your mind around that one. Anyhoo, Ben Gordon scored a career-high 40 points as Chicago beat Miami 109-103, as the Heat's Dwyane Wade exited with a sprained wrist in the first quarter. Miami coach Pat Riley of course blamed the injury on the Bulls' Kurt Hinrich. "Hinrich pulled his hand. Hinrich grabbed his hand, which he does all of the time. It's a little bit of a tactic down below the body. The officials can't see it. So he had Dwyane's hand and tried to pull it out of there."

• This Just In From Washington. Hey, did someone shoot Agent Zero in the ass with a powerful cattle steroid cocktail for the holidays? Gilbert Arenas scored 39 points to lead the Wizards ove the Bobcats 114-107, his fifth game with 30 or more points in the past six.

• Parker, Get In Here! "Smush Parker in crunch time." It kind of rolls off the tongue (then flops over and dies). Kobe Bryant had 27 points for the Lakers, but didn't score in the third quarter and most of the fourth, as Parker (20 points) took over to lead a 106-93 win over the Magic. — RC