All The NBA You Need, Nothing That You Don’t
(Home Team in CAPS)
NEW YORK 110 – Brooklyn 96
New York covers (-8.5)
Minnesota 123 – ORLANDO 107
Minnesota covers (+2.5)
WASHINGTON 119 – Boston 93
Washington covers (Pk)
CHARLOTTE 104 – Utah 98
Charlotte cover (-2.5)
INDIANA 122 – Philadelphia 115
Philadelphia covers (+11.5)
ATLANTA 115 – Chicago 107
Atlanta covers (-3.5)
PHOENIX 107 – Detroit 100
Phoenix covers (+4)
Toronto 112 – OKLAHOMA CITY 102
Toronto covers (+3.5)
Houston 101 – SAN ANTONIO 99
Houston covers (+8)
LA CLIPPERS 111 – Portland 80
LA Clippers covers (-9.5)
GOLDEN STATE 116 – Dallas 95
Golden State covers (-16)
Knicks Weird Euro Lineup Forever
I was at the Garden for everyone favorite inter-city rivalry game between the Knicks and Nets. It’s like the Subway Series with none of the intensity and two pathetic franchises instead of just one. I got to see bae.
That’s My Best Friend That’s My Best Friend
But more importantly, I got the see what might be my favorite Knicks lineup ever.
Porzingis, Willy Hernangomez, Mindy Kuzminskas, Sasha Vujacic, and Brandon Jennings all on the court together. Five Euros (Brandon Jennings played in Italy for a season therefore making him a Euro – people forget that) on the court together. There was spacing. There was ball movement. There was shooting. And there was a weird sense of camaraderie and comfort that can only be explained by their shared European-ness. Kristaps was able to take over. Jennings was dropping dimes left and right and played arguably his best game of the season. It was awesome. I couldn’t get enough of it. I need more Euro Knicks in my life. #EuroKnicksForever
Sportsmanship? We Don’t Play That.
God bless Brandon Jennings. Nobody has ever wanted to be part of a fierce rivalry than Brandon Jennings. I can’t wait for him to elbow Isaiah Thomas in the face on Friday after all the smack Isaiah talked about the Knicks and the Triangle. I am here for Brandon not being there for his competition. Let’s turn this into a real rivalry. Or at least something resembling one.
I’m Not Crying You’re Crying
Fine, I’m crying.
Zach Lavine, More Than A Dunker
Out of the many, many cool things that’ve happened this NBA season, on that list has to be the fact that nearly every guy we expected to take “the leap” is doing just that. It’s a testiment to how hard these dudes are working in what’s become a very, very short summer. Lavine has turned himself into an awesome three point shooter to combine with his freakish athleticism. I talked yesterday about how disappointing the Baby Wolves have been this season. Last night you saw just how insanely promising their future is with that Towns-Lavine-Wiggins (who scored 29 points and is starting to hit threes) trio really is.
There’s No Way DeMar DeRozan Keeps This Up, Right? RIGHT?
34.1 Points per game. 53.3% shooting. And hitting shot after shot like the one you see below.
He’s making bad shots. He’s making contested shots. He’s making every type of shot except three pointers. It’s honestly incredible to watch. Teams are playing him the right way and yet he Keeps. Getting. Buckets.
I can’t see how this is sustainable, but who knows. Maybe this is for real. Maybe he can score 30 a night taking bad shots and not shooting threes. Maybe teams are so not used to defending guys in the midrange that his niche has somehow become an advantage. I don’t know. But it’s remarkable to watch.
Don’t Ever Let Someone Tell You America Isn’t Great
The Warriors Are Getting Good At Basketball Again
There are still plenty of reasons why the Golden State situation could fall apart. Loose-cannon Draymond, no rim protection, minimal depth, no clear alpha dog in crunch time. But the leader in the clubhouse was Klay. If Klay wasn’t happy with his role… if Klay couldn’t figure out how to play fourth banana… if Klay wanted to play alpha dog and screwed up the chemistry…
Last night was one of those games that makes you feel really, really stupid for having that thought.
Put ‘Em In The Cycle Johnny!
We Might Have To Start Respecting James Harden Now
24-15-12. Look we can only make fun of the defense so much. The dude did absolute WORK on two of the best defenders in the league last night. Impressive game. Impressive win.
The Clippers Continue To DOMINATE Teams
I said it before the season, I said it yesterday, and I’ll continue to say it.. the Clippers are very much for real and very much the best contender in the West. They’re playing the best defense in the NBA by a WIDE margin. Combine that with a top five offensive mark and their net rating of 16.3 six points higher than anyone else. And they’re doing it all against what so far has been a very tough schedule. Their bench is better than it’s ever been. They’re deep and versatile. And their two Superstar players are playing with a level of confidence and comfortability we’ve never seen from this team. Maybe that has something to do with not having to play the villains anymore? Wish I’d written about that.
Will their defensive rating slide? Sure. But that doesn’t mean their intensity and commitment to defense will fade by any means. So long as that keeps up, there’s no reason this team can’t hang with and even beat the Warriors. Yes, they’re that good.
Jake Layman, Portland’s Super Hipster, Destroyer Of Worlds
That’s it for today. Only four games on the schedule. I don’t understand how Chicago is on National TV again. This is like the 15th time in two weeks. But it should be cool to see Wade back in Miami tonight. GS-Denver and LA-Sacramento should both be fun too. Picks coming later. See you right back here tomorrow.