Alex Boeder of BrewHoop thinks so:
The Bucks have played 46 games. In their 23 fastest-paced games, they are 14-9. In their 23 slowest-paced games, they are 5-18.
That’s a very interesting statistic, to say the least. Boeder goes on to point out that the Bucks are an excellent defensive team who rebound the ball very well and have shot-blockers who tip the ball to their teammates instead of swatting it out of bounds, so they have plenty of opportunities to play transition basketball rather than inbound the ball from under their own hoop. (The only thing I would add to that is that the Bucks may be such a good defensive rebounding team because they aren’t looking to leak out on the break: Indiana, Cleveland, and San Antonio are the only teams who are in the top-1o in defensive rebound rate and play at a faster-than-average pace.)
However, the Bucks have not capitalized on opportunities to push the break, and continue to play at a very, very methodical pace under the direction of Scott Skiles. There’s always the requisite causation/correlation questions about a statistic like the one above — were the Bucks trying to play faster in their fastest 23 games, or were they successful in those games because the good things they did allowed them to play faster? Still, the numbers clearly suggest that Scott Skiles should be making more of an effort to get his team out in transition when the opportunities present themselves.
New York Knicks C Joakim Noah has an awkward jumper and free throw technique, there’s no denying that. His two-handed, horizontal approach to shooting a basketball is ripe for criticism.
DeMarcus Cousins thinks so, at least.
During a game between the Sacramento Kings and the Knicks, Cousins decided to give Noah a little tongue-in-cheek trolling about his form.
Looks about right.
The 1980s were back in Cleveland Friday night. Well, not completely, Bernie Kosar wasn’t leading the Browns to contention (although man, could they use him now).
No, the ’80s were back in the form of the throwback orange Cavaliers uniforms. And to complete the theme, the Cavaliers players dressed up and Rick-rolled the intro video — they did the complete “classic” Rick Astley hit “Never Gonna Give You Up.” And it was awesome.
The Cavaliers won the game 114-84 over the Heat behind 28 from Kevin Love, but that was secondary to the intro video.
Second-year forward Sam Dekker is finding a comfort zone in the Mike D’Antoni offense in Houston. Healthy this season, he is coming off the bench for 18 minutes a night, and his game where he is quick and can also hit the three is fitting perfectly with Houston’s system, leading him to 6.7 points a game.
Also, he can run the floor. And finish.
As Enes Kanter found out when he hustled, got back in transition defense, and wasn’t going to stop Dekker from getting to the rim.
That’s a quality dunk.
The Rockets went on to win the game 102-99, despite Russell Westbrook‘s seventh-straight triple-double.
LeBron James has been climbing the NBA’s All-time scoring list fast the past couple years, passing Hakeem Olajuwon last season to move into the top 10.
Friday night LeBron passed another legend, Elvin Hayes, who spent the prime of his career with the Washington Bullets and was an NBA champion, six-time All-NBA and 12-time All-Star from the late 1960s through the early 1980s.
LeBron passed Hayes with a vintage LeBron bucket, bringing the ball up in transition, then just using his quickness and strength to power to the rim.
LeBron’s not done, he should pass Moses Malone in the next week or so. Here is the NBA’s All-time scoring Top 10. (As a side note, if you count ABA scoring in the mix LeBron is 11th because Julius Erving and Dan Issel both pass him. For now.)
1. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar 38387
2. Karl Malone 36928
3. Kobe Bryant 33643
4. Michael Jordan 32292
5. Wilt Chamberlain 31419
6. Dirk Nowitzki 29552
7. Shaquille O’Neal 28596
8. Moses Malone 27409
9. LeBron James 27315
10. Elvin Hayes 27313