NBA STAT LEADERS
Even though the NBA season is only a few weeks old, it is always fun and interesting to see which players are leading the NBA in certain categories. We are going to take a look at who the top 3 current leaders are in points, rebounds, and assists.
1.DeMAR DeROZAN: 33.O (TOR)
2. RUSSELL WESTBROOK: 31.7 (OKC)
3. ANTHONY DAVIS: 31.7 (NO)
1.HASSAN WHITESIDE: 16.2 (MIA)
2. ANDRE DRUMMOND: 13.8 (DET)
3. DWIGHT HOWARD: 12.9 (ATL)
1.JAMES HARDEN: 12.5 (HOU)
2. RUSSELL WESTBROOK: 10.1 (OKC)
3. LeBRON JAMES: 9.0 (CLEVELAND)
LA CLIPPERS OFF TO SIZZLING START
The Clippers are off to the best start of any team in the NBA throughout the first couple weeks of the NBA season with a 12-2 record. PG Chris Paul is playing at an MVP type of level, with averages of 18pts, 5.4reb, and 8.6ast. The Clippers have had a very good team the last 5 seasons, although they have been a playoff disappointment those years.
Is this the year the Doc Rivers led California team gets through the Warriors, Spurs, and the rest of the talented teams in the Western Conference? While it is way too early to say, this might be the best Clippers team that they have had. Paul, Blake Griffin, and defensive menace DeAndre Jordan are a formidable threesome and Jamal Crawford is still one of the top 3 6th men in the NBA.
While Golden State is still the cream of the crop in the Western Conference let’s see if the Clippers can continue to keep up their stellar play. We know one thing. The match-ups between the Clippers and the Warriors/Spurs are going to be must see games.
WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT THE CLIPPERS FANTASTIC START?
HOW ARE THE BULLS “BIG 3″ DOING?”
The summer of 2016 free agency was one for the ages. With the NBA salary cap rising to over $90-million dollars, teams were spending money like crazy. In our opinion, there were good signings, and some that were awfully bad. In between the madness of the summer months was a complete reconstruction of the Chicago Bulls roster.
While Kevin Durant shockingly went to the Golden State Warriors to form a fearsome foursome with Curry, Thompson, and Draymond Green, the Bulls were forming their version of the big 3.
Dwyane Wade left the only team he ever knew in the Miami Heat. Rajon Rondo, the enigmatic, but talented PG signed with the franchise, and these 2 players joined Jimmy Butler, clearly Chicago’s best player and the cornerstone of the franchise. Some critics panned the acquisitions, saying Wade and Rondo were too old, while others loved the moves.
We personally liked the acquisitions, as the only way to get past the Cleveland Cavaliers in the Eastern Conference is with talent and veteran players who have been playoff tested. We believed then that it was a gamble worth taking. So how are things playing out through the first couple weeks of the 2016-17 NBA regular season?
Chicago has been up and down and sport an 8-5 record. Butler is playing like the All-Star that he is, with averages of 24pts, 6.5reb, and 3.9ast. The 27-year old SF is also playing his typical stellar defense. The 34-year old Wade has clearly lost a step as he now gets by more on his basketball intellect, although he is averaging 18 points in 30 minutes per game. Perhaps the most important player on the Bulls roster is Rondo. PG play in the NBA is crucial. The former Kentucky star’s statistics are all down from his career averages. Is this just a mini-slump in the early-going of the season, or something that head coach Fred Hoiberg has to be worried about.
Always one of the NBA leaders in assists, the 6’1″ PG is down almost 2 assists from his career average (from 8.7 to 6.6). Shooting has never been his strong suit and it is showing this year as he is shooting a paltry 36% from the field. This leads to opposing point guards from playing off him and makes Wade’s and Butler’s job harder as they command more attention from defenses.
With all this being said, what can we make of Chicago? They will make the playoffs. However, management won’t be satisfied with just making the playoffs. They want to make noise once they get into the postseason. Chicago also has some nice young players in Bobby Portis and Doug McDermott and veteran big-man Robin Lopez.
It is our belief that while there are around 70 games left to be played, the health of Wade and Rondo will end up being a major concern. If Chicago wants to contend, the front office will have to make a big move if Chicago has thoughts of being a top 4 seed and be taken as serious threats in the Eastern Conference. We will revisit this situation a couple months from now and see how the Bulls version of their “Big 3” are playing.
Here are the top 3 rookie leaders in points, rebounds, and assists through Monday, 11-21, 2016.
2.DARIO SARIC: (PHILLY) 10.5
3. BUDDY HIELD: (N.O) 8.7
2.DARIO SARIC: (PHILLY) 6.4
3.JAKOB POELTL: (TOR) 4.6
1.MALCOLM DELANEY: (ATL) 4.0
3.ANDREW HARRISON (MEM) 3.1
SIAKAM STANDING OUT
One of the more pleasant surprises among NBA rookie so far has been the play of Toronto’s Pascal Siakam. The number 27th pick in the 2016 NBA Draft has played very well for the Raptors and has provided needed rebounding and athleticism in their front-court.
The 6’9″ PF from New Mexico State is averaging 5.8pts and 4.3reb in about 19 minutes per game. The 22-year old wasn’t a highly recruited player coming out of high school but worked hard enough to become the WAC Player of the Year in 2016. Siakam is excellent in transition and is a very good shot blocker with a developing offensive game.
It looks like Toronto has found a player who will be in their future plans. In what was an average 2016 NBA Draft class, it looks like Siakam is proving the teams that passed on him wrong. He has the looks of becoming a good NBA player.
To view all 70 of our NBA Rookie Player profiles, CLICK HERE.
To read our 1st edition (11-8-16) of “NNT”, please CLICK HERE.
To read our 2nd edition (11-15-16) of “NNT”, please CLICK HERE.
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