Most Improved Player Rankings: Why winning the award might not be a compliment

CJ McCollum

Usually, people like awards. They’re shiny and sometimes gold. You get to keep them and hang them on your wall, and then “accidentally” bump into them when your grandma comes over, so she can say “Careful!” and then “Ooh, what’s that?,” and you can tell her about how awesome you are. Sometimes, you get to stand up in front of other people and give speeches when you win an award. You can say motivational things like, “You the Real MVP!” and get moved to


Most Improved Player Rankings: Can Injured Jimmy Butler Still Win?

Jimmy Butler

Devastating. That’s how most basketball fans would describe this past week, particularly ones in the Lake Michigan area. First came the news that former MVP Derrick Rose of the Chicago Bulls was hurt again, the victim of a torn meniscus in his right knee. And now, All-Stra teammate and Most Improved Player candidate Jimmy Butler is out 3-6 weeks after hyperextending his left elbow. Bulls fans, and the NBA in general, have taken one giant, James Harden-sized kick to the man region.


Suns Making Madness of Their Own, Taking Over Most Improved Rankings


March is about underdogs. That’s why we love it so much. Well, most of us anyway. (Can someone check Chris Bernucca for a pulse?) Just kidding, boss. It’s the incredible stories like Mercer’s upset of Duke, Dayton’s run to the Sweet 16 and Stephen F. Austin’s miraculous comeback against VCU that keep us glued to the TV screen in March, like a month-long Rob Ford press conference. There’s nothing like a good underdog narrative, and year after year, the NCAA Tournament delivers with several


Most Improved Player Rankings: Slam Dunk Contest Decidedly Unimproved


This column is supposed to be about improvement, so let’s start it off by declaring that Saturday night’s Slam Dunk Contest was without a doubt the most un-improved thing in the history of All-Star Weekend. Seriously, what the hell happened there? After Paul George, John Wall and Damian Lillard – three bona fide stars in the league – actually decided that being considered one of the world’s best dunkers wasn’t beneath them, the league chucked a Snuggie into the Atlantic Ocean and


Most Improved Player Rankings: Seahawks show improvement is the key to life


Welcome to the real season.Now that the Super Bowl is over and the NFL finally fades into the background of the American sports scene, many casual sports fans turn their attention to the NBA, as if the only sport that existed from Mondays to Saturdays in January was Herm Edwards and Ron Jaworski yelling hyperbolic nonsense at each other. Football’s bloated specter can be overbearing at times, especially with The Worldwide Leader making Daily Mail stories out of day-to-day NFL occurrences.


Bledsoe’s Injury Leaves Most Improved Player Rankings Wide Open


As the great Jerry Seinfeld once said, knowing George Costanza was like taking a walk through the jungle. He didn’t know what he was going to find next, and he was real scared. I feel the same way about this NBA season. All of the injuries – Derrick Rose, Russell Westbrook, Chris Paul, Jrue Holiday, Brook Lopez, and now Most Improved Player favorite Eric Bledsoe – have basketball fans treading lightly, hoping not to get eaten by a tarantula or something with


Most Improved Player Rankings: Drummond Still a Bright Spot for Dreary Pistons


As the sun sets over 2013, and the meters of our lives continue to run inexorably with no quarter slots, there is one thing in this crazy world that we can know for sure. Andre Drummond is balling, dude. Though the rest of his Pistons teammates seem to be lost in an existential paradigm (What’s the point of playing defense; we’re all just going to die anyway?), Drummond has taken control of his destiny as much as one can in our world. He’s


Most Improved Player Rankings: ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas

Khris Middleton big

Twas the night before Christmas, and all through the league, not a player was balling, not even Jeff Teague. The Most Improved Rankings were crafted with flair, in the hopes that somebody might actually care. Danny Ainge was nestled all snug in his bed, while visions of Asik danced in his head. J-Kidd in his kerchief, Lopez in his cast, the Nets have settled down for their long winter’s nap. When from the Wells Fargo Center there rose such a clatter, I sprang from