Kawhi Leonard is not on the Spurs bench during the playoffs, supporting his teammates. He’s not speaking with team management, either.
Things are not good right now… but the Spurs are not close to trading him, either. At least not yet.
I get into all of it in this latest PBT Extra.
Maybe that day will come, we’ll have a better sense around the draft and into early July when the Spurs have to decide whether to offer Leonard a $200+ million designated veteran contract extension. Put it on the table, he’ll sign it. If they decide they don’t want to make that offer he’s traded. But the Spurs are not there yet.
Wesley Matthews threw this inbound pass.
Anthony Davis called himself the NBA’s best player.
He sure backed it up last night.
Davis posted a 32-16-8-3-3 to lead the Pelicans to a 19-point win over the Rockets, considered by many to be the NBA’s second-best team. The performance immediately vaults Davis to the forefront of any MVP discussions.
But for him, it was just par for the course. Davis has repeatedly dazzled in season openers. When 18-6-2-3 qualifies as the dud, you know Davis is doing something right.
Davis’ box scores in New Orleans’ first game each season:
That makes Davis’ average season-opener game score 24.1, one of the best ever. Only Michael Jordan has a higher mark on record (since 1983, as far back as Basketball-Reference records go; minimum: three games).
Here are the leaders:
Obviously, Davis cares more about how he finishes than starts. The Pelicans have made the playoffs only twice with him, getting swept in the first round in 2015 and falling in the second round last season.
But it should be clear by now: Davis comes to play as soon as the season tips.
I’ve heard it from friends. I’ve seen it on NBA Twitter. I’ve debated it with sports talk radio hosts.
“This NBA season is already decided, nobody has a chance against the Warriors.”
Boston has a shot, as I get into in this PBT Extra.
Absolutely the Warriors are the odds-on favorites to win it all, if healthy they should three-peat. They were my pick. But I believe Boston has a legitimate shot to dethrone the Warriors — they have the wing athletes, the switchability on defense, the scoring, the versatility. A Boston/Golden State Finals is going six or seven games… if we get there. It’s just day two of a long season.
But I believe in Boston.
The Nuggets had no answer for Boban Marjanovic.
Neither did L.A.’s rims.
The 7-foot-3, 290-pound Clippers center scored 18 points on 6-of-8 shooting with eight rebounds in 18 minutes. The Clippers outscored Denver by seven with Marjanovic on the floor, but got outscored by 16 otherwise in a 107-98 loss last night.
Marjanovic just doesn’t have the stamina to play huge minutes, though he caught an extra breather when officials stopped the game to check the levelness of a rim Marjanovic dunked on – with his feet still on the ground. Incredible!