This is the best weekend of the year to be a college basketball fan. As such, we’ve got a very NCAA-heavy edition of this NBA news blog.
After erasing a 17-point first half deficit and a 13-point deficit in the fourth quarter, the Heat overcame Jeff Green’s career-high 43 points and extended their winning streak to 23 games. Now, 30 is actually in sight. The second-best NBA winning streak of all time merits kudos everywhere, so here is my hat tip.
But back to the teams that actually matter for our rankings.
Aside from the obvious jostling in our weekly free agent rankings, the Miami Heat have now won 18 games in a row and have our very own Chris Sheridan wondering whether or not they can challenge the NBA’s all-time winning streak of 33 consecutive games.
That record belongs to the 1971-72 Los Angeles Lakers, who began their championship season by winning every game they played in November and December.
It’s hard to be much better than Russell Westbrook was last night — 37 points, 10 rebounds, 5 assists and only one turnover — though Kevin Durant (26 PTS, 9 REB, 5 AST, 3 STL, 3 BLK) put up crooked numbers in five categories, he was only the co-star as the Thunder rolled to an easy win.
But if you’re Mark Cuban, and Chris Paul let it be known that he wanted to come play for you and with Dirk Nowitzki, do you make a run at him? Or would you go out and try to use the available cap space on, say, Al Jefferson and Brandon Jennings?
We don’t know what we would do either. What we do know is that once the trading deadline passes, most NBA teams (and fans) immediately set their sights on June’s draft and the beginning of the free agency period.