Bernucca: Scoreboard Watching, Lottery Style

NBALottery-ping pong

Teams in the NBA playoff races aren’t the only ones watching scoreboards this time of year. Take the Philadelphia 76ers, for example. The Sixers lost their first 17 games, were mathematically eliminated from the playoff race nearly a month ago and almost certainly will lose 60-plus games for the second straight season. But GM Sam Hinkie and the rest of the Sixers’ front office are tracking the results of other games almost as closely as their own. That’s because Philadelphia could have

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Sheridan: LVP Rankings, a.k.a. the Worst of the Worst

LVP

The MVP debate is a great one this season, and as I mentioned in my most recent edition of my MVP rankings: This is one season when things could truly go down to the wire. As in Game No. 82. But what about the other end of the spectrum? Who have been the Least Valuable Players? The guys you may never have heard of, or guys whose weaknesses are well-chronicled but particularly acute this season. Those players’ lack of production should not

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SH Blog: Dwight Howard in, Pat Beverley out for Rockets; Derrick Rose expects to be cleared for contact soon

Dwight Howard interview

Just as one key starter returns to the Houston Rockets after two-plus months away, another could soon be facing an injury of comparable intensity. Dwight Howard returned to the starting lineup on Wednesday for the first time since January 23. It’s just the 33rd game played this season for Howard, who has dealt with ongoing right knee problems since first suffering a bone bruise in training camp. Unfortunately for the Rockets, Howard’s return coincides with a new injury to starting point guard Pat

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SH Blog: Dwight Howard closes in on return to Rockets; Cavs balance health vs. race for No. 2

Harden & Howard

Dwight Howard is finally closing in on a return to the Houston Rockets after missing the last 22 games with swelling in his troublesome right knee. Howard, now 29 years old, participated in parts of Houston’s practice on Monday (video), and both star guard James Harden and head coach Kevin McHale said they were pleased with what they saw from the franchise’s star big man. Howard has been traveling with the team, working out and participating in two-on-two drills for some

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Sprung: MVP Candidates Pros and Cons, By the Numbers

Westbrook-AllStar

This season’s MVP race is shaping up to be the best one in quite some time. The perceived top five candidates this season – James Harden, Stephen Curry, Anthony Davis, LeBron James and Russell Westbrook – represent the top five in PER, three of the top five in win shares and lead the NBA in nearly two dozen major statistical categories. We’re pretty well covered with MVP rankings on this site with Sheridan’s regular updates, and other staffers have chimed in

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Bernucca: Westbrook is Awesome, But Not Hardenesque in MVP Race

Westbrook Curry resize 1

Let’s get something out of the way here. Russell Westbrook is awesome. Westbrook is one of the game’s top five players, and I’ve felt that way for a couple of years. He may not be a better conventional point guard than Chris Paul or Tony Parker or Stephen Curry. But if any of those guys even dream about being a better player than Westbrook, they better wake up and get back to reality. I also love watching Westbrook play. I cannot recall

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SH Blog: Andrew Wiggins turns rookie race into runaway; Are Sixers open to trading Embiid?

Andrew Wiggins

James Harden rightfully led Monday night’s headlines with his second triple-double of the season and a virtual ankle-breaking move on Minnesota’s Ricky Rubio. After all, there’s a reason Harden appears to be the league’s probable MVP. But rookie swingman Andrew Wiggins served notice that he could very well challenge Harden and the NBA’s other elite players in the years ahead. On the night of his 20th birthday, Wiggins notched the third 30-point game of his young career, scoring 30 points on 12-of-24 shooting

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Photo of the Day: Arizona State Retires Harden’s Jersey

James Harden Jersey Retirement

James Harden has one of the most incredible, bushiest beards you’ll ever see in your life. I guess that’s what happens when you don’t shave for years at a time. But, there was a time when he didn’t have his famous calling card growing on his face. He was actually still a teenager and was enrolled at Arizona State University, which was pretty much the last time anyone saw from below his ears to his chin. [Read more…]

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