SH Blog: Paul George must improve offensively in order to save Pacers’ season, Kyrie Irving cleared to practice

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Paul George

By now, we all know that the Indiana Pacers have some major issues on the offensive end. If you don’t, check out the previous blog. What exactly are they doing wrong and who is the main culprit for killing their offense? Our friend coach Nick of Bbballbreakdown gives his take on the situation, and it mainly involves Paul George and how badly he has fallen off since the beginning of the season:

I’m sure Nick isn’t trying to say that George is to blame for everything, but as stated in the clip, his struggles when the Pacers lose sticks out like a sore thumb. Given that he is undoubtedly the most important player on the team, it makes sense that his struggles directly correlates with the team’s struggles. If part of the issue is, indeed, that he has gone away from the mechanics that helped him succeed tremendously in the early going, this could turn out to be a lost season for George because that’s not something he can fix at this point of the season – it would have been fixed by now otherwise.

George’s shooting percent has gone down every single month. He shot 47.2 percent in November and 46.8 percent in December, but hasn’t shot above 41 percent in any month since, bottoming out at an atrocious 37.2 percent in March. In the last nine games, he has shot below 29 percent five times and managed to shoot above 40 percent just once. That’s reaching Harrison Barnes status. To be fair, George is not the only major player on the team to see a steep drop in production. Roy Hibbert, who had averaged around 12 points and seven rebounds for much of the season, has seen his numbers drop to 9.7 points on 42.2 percent shooting and 4.6 rebounds in March without a decrease in playing time – simply inexplicable for a supposedly-dominant center. Hibbert has pointed out that the lack of ball movement from his guards may be the primary culprit for his struggles, but nothing excuses 4.6 rebounds from one of the tallest and strongest centers in the league. 

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Tweet of the Day: Golden State Warriors NCAA-Style Three-Point Tournament

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March Madness, the culmination of college basketball’s season, is finally upon us. The NCAA Tournament bracket has been set and Round 1 games will begin Tuesday.

NBA athletes, many of whom played college basketball, are just as excited as the average fan, as can be seen by their recent tweets [Exhibit A; Exhibit B].

As the NCAA Tournament draws near, the Golden State Warriors will embark upon a tourney of their own—to determine the best three-point shooter in the organization. All-Star point guard Stephen Curry provides the details.

Tweet of the Day: Jared Sullinger

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On the heels of Monday night’s 91-94 loss to the Charlotte Bobcats, the Boston Celtics have been hit with more bad news.

Backup guard Leandro Barbosa injured his knee in the third quarter and had to be carried off of the court.

An MRI on Tuesday revealed that he did, in fact, tear his ACL, and will now miss the rest of the season.

Jared Sullinger, whose season ended recently after undergoing surgery on his back, tweeted words of encouragement to his teammate.

Tweet of the Night: Brian Scalabrine

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Fans of the game and teammates alike have always taken a liking to Brian Scalabrine. He’s embraced his place in the game, and people respect that.

Whether it was fans yelling for the coach to put him in the game or just being featured through NBA Meme’s on Facebook, Brian Scalabrine has long been an entertaining figure.

Today around noon, Scal decided to officially join Twitter.

SH Blog: Harden was devastated and stunned after trade, Stoudemire to miss at least six weeks

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It has been a couple of days now since the Thunder traded away a big part of their future in James Harden, but that hardly stopped anyone from still buzzing about it all.

Who won the trade? Did the Thunder give up on their chance to contend after making it to the Finals last season over money? What does it mean for the Rockets, who suddenly look a whole lot more interesting?

Our columnist Chris Bernucca was far from thrilled with the idea of the Thunder being content with keeping a sustainable team. Sheridan shared similar sentiments in this video, but fellow blogger Jeremy Bauman thought only time can tell who really won in this deal.

Plenty of others shared their thoughts about it all. See them below along with news you should know heading into the season opener:

  • James Harden talked about his initial reaction to being traded, from Ben Golliver of SI: “James Harden’s “Welcome to Houston” media tour continued throughout Sunday, and after getting out in front of the biggest question — whether he will sign with the Rockets long term — he did double back to admit that he was caught by surprise when the Oklahoma City Thunder abruptly traded him late Saturday night. “I was actually at dinner with my family,” Harden told CSNHouston’s Kelli Johnson. “Enjoying dinner, nice and quiet. I got a text from my general manager, Sam Presti. I called him. He told me that he loved me and that things didn’t work out and that I was going to be coming to Houston. I was kind of stunned, but as I thought about it, it could be a good thing for me.” The next morning, Harden was on his way to Houston, jumping through the necessary hoops that go with being moved. “A whirlwind,” he said. “Having to pack my things, get as much as possible, having physicals, getting to meet the team and the front office here, it’s been great. It’s kind of a loss for words.”
  • Darnell Mayberry of The Oklahoman has the inside scoop on the discussion that went on between Sam Presti and Harden and his agent in the final hour before the trade: “But Sam Presti told him. Presti’s lips now are sealed, but sources from both parties said that the Thunder appealed one final time to Harden on Friday. Upped its offer to $53 million over four years but told Harden if he didn’t take it, he would be traded to Houston. Presti didn’t use that as a warning. He used it as a plea. He desperately wanted to keep Harden, but this was the last best offer. And the Thunder gave Harden an hour to accept. It wasn’t that Presti was trying to play hardball, necessarily. He was on the clock. That deal with the Rockets wouldn’t last forever; Houston wanted Harden early enough to sign him to a contract extension by the Halloween deadline. Presti had decided that if Harden wouldn’t sign an extension with OKC, a preseason deal offered the Thunder its best leverage. Harden, through his agent, said he needed three days. Presti stood firm on one hour. And 60 minutes later, Presti called the Rockets and consummated a rare NBA October blockbuster trade.”
  • Daryl Morey was quite proud to be able to land a player of James’ caliber, from Golliver:

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