SportsNation Blog Archives NBA
Spurs good chance at title?
The sound you heard from South Texas on Thursday was that of a contender reasserting itself. Yes, it seems we'd forgotten about the San Antonio Spurs -- you know, that team that was a miracle comeback away from winning last season's NBA title -- but perhaps we should pay heed. After all, thanks to a 111-87 thumping of the defending-champion Miami Heat, the Spurs now sit at 45-16, just one game off the best record in the league, getting it done with their traditional mix of big names and niche-filling role players. Are the Spurs truly a threat? Cast your votes below!
LeBron mentoring Paul George?
In an interview this week with BasketballInsiders.com, rising Indiana Pacers star Paul George said he'd like to get some advice from LeBron James. The four-time MVP's answer Thursday? "I have an open-door policy." So we know the two-time defending NBA Finals MVP is up for it, but are you OK with top players giving each other advice? Or do you subscribe to the "old school" theory that they should be enemies?
Noah wants 'Melo on Bulls
All-Star Weekend is a time for the NBA's best to socialize and schmooze, and Joakim Noah took advantage of that opportunity in a somewhat Machiavellian way. Noah told Carmelo Anthony during the break that he wanted Anthony on the Bulls, a sentiment evidently also shared by Derrick Rose, who reportedly offered to personally recruit Anthony. Playing with Noah and Rose might be a tempting opportunity for Anthony. Though he has been putting up great numbers this season and he'd stand to make much more money in New York, he's stuck on a 22-40 team that would need some kind of miracle to make the playoffs even in a weak Eastern Conference.
LeBron James might have scored a career-high 61 points against the Bobcats on Monday night, but for Hall of Famer Dominique Wilkins, that's not all that impressive. Wilkins sent out a series of tweets that pointed out just how weak LeBron's competition was during his offensive explosion:
No denying he put on a shooting display. He was hot. Let's not forget, he was playing the Bobcats. A sub 500 team w a match up nightmare.- Dominique Wilkins (@DWilkins21) March 4, 2014
Where is the Defense? The Bobcats put up 107 points in a defenseless display of basketball. Offensively who was there to make Bron work on D- Dominique Wilkins (@DWilkins21) March 4, 2014
Why are we not talking about Al Jefferson and the MONSTER night he had 38 and 19! Yes, like I said, Bron got hot & put on a shooting clinic.- Dominique Wilkins (@DWilkins21) March 4, 2014
Watch the film. No close outs on D, doubles were late, rotations were slow. It was too easy to score. At 54 y/o I could drop 40 on that D- Dominique Wilkins (@DWilkins21) March 4, 2014
Wilkins later specified that he wasn't criticizing LeBron, just pointing out that, for someone of James' talent, playing the Bobcats is practically Easy Mode:
Calm down people. Not taking anything away from a great OFFENSIVE night from one of the greatest the game has seen. He shot the lights out!- Dominique Wilkins (@DWilkins21) March 4, 2014
Obviously I love scoring & a great offensive performance is exciting to watch, especially from the young talent today.- Dominique Wilkins (@DWilkins21) March 4, 2014
But great basketball is even better to watch! The work, the schemes, the battles, the enforcers inside...a lot of that is lost. #Totality- Dominique Wilkins (@DWilkins21) March 4, 2014
LeBron, Durant in tight MVP race
We might have ourselves an NBA MVP race after all. Long considered a firm second behind the Oklahoma City Thunder's Kevin Durant, LeBron James poured in a career-high and Miami Heat-record 61 points on Monday night against the Charlotte Bobcats -- Miami's eighth straight win. James still trails Durant in scoring and player efficiency rating, but the Heat (43-14) now sit above the Thunder (45-15) in the overall standings. Who gets your vote today? Who will win it in the end?