Rookie Rankings, Week 19: The Philly Factor

Philadelphia 76ers Sixers

First, the good news. Among rookies, the top four scorers behind Philadelphia’s Michael Carter-Williams all got a recent chance to pad their stats against the sickening 76ers. Now, the bad news. Only one gets another chance this season. In case you haven’t noticed, the Sixers have lost 18 straight games. The last time they won, Time Warner and Comcast hadn’t announced their merger, the Super Bowl hadn’t been played and the greatest single-take shot in television history hadn’t yet aired. 

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Sheridan’s MVP Rankings, March 12 Edition: Durant Still No. 1 For Me

Kevin Durant crop

Thanks to all those who voted in our poll last week asking whether Kevin Durant or LeBron James is the stronger MVP candidate. The final results were astonishingly close, with Durant taking over Tuesday night as he was scoring 42 points against Houston and winning the poll with 47.10 percent of the vote to James’ 46.33. Is this a preview of what the actual voting will be like? It probably was, and the challenge for the NBA front office in late April and

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From the Clouds: This Week’s Most Improved Player Rankings

MikeFrancesa2008

A well-proportioned, wise Italian man with a radio show in New York once told me and a listening audience of probably hundreds that the NBA “goes into the clouds” in February and March. I can’t really remember his name, OK? So let’s just call him Ike Manfresca. Manfresca’s quote has always stuck with me, because:  (a) it was so strange and (b) it’s the perfect way to describe the seasonal malaise that rolls in around this time of year, like a

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Kamenetzky Bros. Power Rankings: The Curious Case of the Pelicans

BrianKamenetzky

At this time of year, it’s common practice to categorize teams into tankers and non-tankers, but where a team is in mid-March isn’t necessarily where they were in October. You have your teams who started the year constructed to be historically atrocious, now rounding spectacularly into form (Philadelphia). Some expected to be bad, but turned out pretty good (Phoenix, Toronto). Some hoped to be maybe-we-scrape-the-playoff-ladder-if-all-goes-well-but-we-know-it’s-a-rebuilding-year competent, then saw everything go straight to the terlit (Lakers). Then there is the curious case of

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Rookie Rankings, Week 18: An Otto Porter Sighting

Washington Wizards

The best thing about top overall pick Anthony Bennett’s tremendously disappointing rookie season is that it has provided cover for some tremendously disappointing seasons by other rookies. Namely, Otto Porter. Porter was taken third in the 2013 draft by the Washington Wizards and has been worse than Bennett. Much worse. Bennett is averaging 4.2 points and 3.0 rebounds while shooting just 35 percent from the floor. Pedestrian numbers, for sure, and unacceptable for a top pick who is expected to contribute right away. But

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Sheridan’s MVP Rankings, March 5 Edition: What Do the Readers Say?

unclesam

It’s a two-man race. We all can agree on that, right? But who is the more worthy candidate: LeBron James? Or Kevin Durant? This week, we let y’all have your say as we post a poll within this post. You can even vote for somebody else if you so choose, but the majority of folks will vote for the player who leads the league in scoring or the player who went off for 61 points on Monday night. Once you cast your ballot,

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Most Improved Player Rankings: The Oscars Edition

AnthonyDavisSH1

The Oscars are over, and since I didn’t watch them or see any of the nominated movies, let’s get this Oscar-themed edition of the Most Improved Player Rankings under way! Because nothing says “balanced sportswriter” like a column full of misinformed pop culture references! The envelopes, please … Best Actor: Anthony Davis. This award goes to the best player in our group, and Davis is the clear choice there. He’s already one of the league’s best big men, and Pelicans fans have already started

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