Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Three random observations ...

... about the NBA:

1. It's getting difficult to argue that Cleveland shouldn't be considered the best team in the league. They have the best winning percentage, the best points differential, are 21-0 at home, and have plenty of guys with which to surround LeBron James, the league's best player. James and Williams almost made it a double triple-double last night, and their numbers of at least 23 points, 11 assists and eight rebounds each represent the first time it's been done in the NBA since Butch Beard and John Johnson did it for the second-year expansion Cavs in 1971. Somehow the LeBron-Mo combo seems destined for a lot more than the Beard-Johnson 1-2 punch ever provided.

2. James and Williams weren't the only pair of teammates to come close to twin triple-doubles. Raymond Felton and Boris Diaw were both an assist shy in Charlotte's double-overtime upset of the Lakers in Los Angeles. The Bobcats are playing well of late, winning six of their last eight, and it's clear the trade with Phoenix was the right move, with Raja Bell, and especially Boris Diaw playing at high levels. They've bolstered their frontcourt by acquiring Desagan Dipo and Juwan Howard in recent weeks, adding veterans to provide depth in a manner a team much farther up the standings would do to help itself win a title. In this case, those veterans appear to be around to help a team make the playoffs for the first time, which Charlotte is poised, with a second-half run, is poised to do.

3. Look out in the East. Mickael Pietrus, a major boost to the Magic before he broke his wrist last month, returned Tuesday and led the team with 27 points and 10 rebounds off the bench in a 135-111 rout of Indiana. If Orlando can integrate Pietrus successfully with rookie Courtney Lee, who has taken over the starting 2 guard position, the Magic probably won't be relegated to third place in the conference, which they occupy now.

No comments: