Hubbard: Rethinking the Most Improved Player Award: Is Curry Deserving?

Curry7

The Most Improved Player Award did not irritate me until the seventh year it was awarded. That was in the 1991-92 season when Pervis Ellison won it. Three years earlier, Ellison was the No. 1 pick in the draft. To reward him as the most improved because he played well after underachieving for two years seemed to violate the spirit of the award. He was supposed to be good! In his defense, Ellison was bothered by injuries, but while he was

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Sprung: Portland Surging With Elite Lillard-McCollum Backcourt

Blazers

After losing four starters and their sixth man over the summer, it seems so unlikely insane that the Portland Trail Blazers are currently tied for the sixth seed in the Western Conference. The reason why Portland is the hottest team in the league aside from Golden State is the play of its backcourt of Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum, which has quickly become one of the league’s elite guard pairings.  The Blazers have now won 10 of their last 12 and

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Sprung: Examining Joe Johnson’s Fit For Cavs, Heat, Hawks

JoeJohnson

Back during the 2014 Eastern Conference semifinals, Dwyane Wade and a few of his Miami Heat teammates were in the visiting locker room at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center preparing to go up against the Nets. Inevitably, the conversation shifted to the player they feared the most on the opposing team, Joe Johnson.  Wade talked about how strong Johnson was, and other teammates agreed about how tough he was to guard. While LeBron James and Miami dispatched Brooklyn in five quick games, the

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Sprung: Analyzing the Decline of Dwyane Wade

Dwyane Wade

Age has finally caught up to Dwyane Wade, to an extent. The longtime Miami Heat superstar is putting up career lows in field goal percentage, effective field goal percentage and true shooting percentage, while his scoring average and PER are at their lowest rates since his rookie season 12 years ago. However, that doesn’t mean Wade is still not a really good player— just one slowly in decline, now 10 days after his 34th birthday. That’s natural for someone who’s played over 35,000

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Sprung: What Has Gone Right and Wrong for Eastern Conference Contenders

NBA-Eastern-Conference

For the first time in roughly two decades, the Eastern Conference is better than the Western Conference from top to bottom. Nine East teams are at .500 or better – nearly twice as many teams as last season, when sixth-seeded Milwaukee finished 41-41. And the East actually has a winning record against the West this season at 100-98 What changed so quickly from last season, when articles were written about how there was the greatest disparity in conference strength in recent memory? “I

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