Coming off the first playoff appearance since 2010 and turning the page on some miserable years, Charlotte now has new hope — and a new old nickname. The Charlotte Hornets have rediscovered their sting and are for real. Guided a year ago by first-year coach Steve Clifford, Charlotte restructured its entire defensive system, and along with star big man Al Jefferson saw its win total spike from 21 all the way to 43. According to analyst David Locke, the Hornets shaved off
Chicago Bulls forward Doug McDermott, coming off a First Team selection at the recently completed Las Vegas Summer League, is among two rookie rookie chosen for the USA Select Team announced Tuesday. McDermott averaged 18.0 points and 4.0 rebounds in four games in Las Vegas. He was joined by Boston Celtics rookie guard Marcus Smart, who averaged 14.8 points, 4.2 rebounds and 4.2 assists over five games in the Orlando Summer League. The Select Team is a group of players younger than
Thursday afternoon the NBA unveiled the 2013-14 NBA All-Rookie Team, celebrating this past season’s top young athletes. One name you will not see on the the team is the Cleveland Cavaliers’ No.1 overall draft pick Anthony Bennett, who only played in 52 games, averaging 4.2 points and three rebounds in just 12.8 minutes per game. He is just the fifth top overall draft pick to miss the All-Rookie team in 26 years. There were quite a few young rookies deserving of the
From his first NBA game, Michael Carter-Williams took hold of the Rookie of the Year award. He immediately grabbed the undivided attention of all of us, going for 22 points, 12 assists, nine steals and seven rebounds in Philadelphia’s improbable season-opening win over the two-time defending champion Miami Heat. Before the 76ers started losing – losing frequently, losing historically – Carter-Williams directed his team to two more wins and was named Eastern Conference Player of the Week. Not Rookie of the Week.
We have reached the point of the season where teams that are out of the playoff race start giving more playing time to their younger players to see what they may have. One of those teams is the Minnesota Timberwolves, who may have something in rookie big man Gorgui Dieng. New Timberwolves GM Flip Saunders spent the offseason loading his roster with veterans such as Kevin Martin, Corey Brewer and Ronny Turiaf in hope of making the playoffs for the first time
While Victor Oladipo and Trey Burke chase Michael Carter-Williams for Rookie of the Year, a handful of other rookies are helping their teams chase postseason berths and higher seeds. The Eastern Conference has three teams in the playoff chase whose finish will be somewhat impacted by the play of their rookies. The Western Conference has five teams in the hunt with rookies playing a prominent role. The team relying most on rookies is undoubtedly the Atlanta Hawks, who have two rookies in
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.
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