What do James Harden, Stephen Curry, Russell Westbrook and LeBron James have in common? They’re all legitimate MVP candidates, of course. But what else does that Awesome Foursome have in common? In a potential playoff series against the defending NBA champion San Antonio Spurs, they can all expect to see an individual matchup with Kawhi Leonard. In case you’ve been transfixed by March Madness, the Spurs are looking like a championship contender. Again. If you want some perspective, my son Andrew was born
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
The MVP is James Harden’s to lose, right? And Coach of the Year is a two-man race between Steve Kerr and Mike Budenholzer, correct? Not so fast. It is still February, the temperature here in New York is going to hit zero again tonight, and the number zero was an accurate reflection on the chances of Russell Westbrook contending for the MVP award and Stan Van Gundy being in the mix for Coach of the Year as recently as Christmas. To refresh your
When you consider the number of basketball savvy writers on our staff and the number of opinions they have, it is obvious that we always go way too long between editions of the Three-Man Weave. But it is back. In this edition, we take a look at the bottom of the Eastern Conference playoff bracket, the sizzling Atlanta Hawks and perhaps the best Shootout field in All-Star Weekend history. 1. Assuming the six teams in the East above .500 make the playoffs,
If you have missed the New Orleans Pelicans playing the past two nights, you have missed seeing some of Anthony Davis at his best. On Sunday night, he stole Rajon Rondo’s last inbounds pass (Note to Rajon: Don’t try to lob the ball over this guy) and was fouled, making both from the stripe to give New Orleans a three-point lead. After the game, he leapt into the embrace of a random fan. On Monday night, on the way to a
We all knew that Josh Smith had become a detrimental player on the court – at least for the Detroit Pistons – with his inability to space the floor and the horrible shot selections that crippled the offense. What we didn’t know was just how capable the Pistons would be with him out of the lineup.
In today’s NBA, the formula for winning in recent years was simple: Accumulate as many maximum-salary stars as you can without breaking the bank. But when you start piling up eight-figure salaries against the luxury tax, the bank breaks pretty quickly. So teams fill out their rosters with minimum-salary veterans. And if you look at the top of the NBA standings right now, many teams are getting very productive seasons from veterans signed to minimum-salary deals. The Chicago Bulls added Pau Gasol to Jimmy
Every time someone summons up the nerve to ask, “What’s wrong with the Spurs?” the defending NBA champions have provided an emphatic response: Nothing. They did it in November, beating the Clippers and Warriors on the road on consecutive nights after losses to Houston and New Orleans. They did it again in December, beating the Clippers to end a four-game losing streak that included back-to-back excruciating triple-overtime losses. And they did it again last night, beating the Rockets for the first time