The Charlotte Hornets got one win over the weekend, so it could have been worse. And at least there were some things to be excited about in the loss to the Mavericks. But we’ll do the Hornets talk another time. It’s time to look around the league and see what else is up.
James Harden is finally a Clipper
Score another point for player empowerment. After the Blazers and Damian Lillard proved that you don’t have to trade a player to the team they tell you to, the 76ers went and traded James Harden to the only team on his preferred destination list. Though to be fair, Harden is not Lillard. The 76ers got back a return of distant first round picks and some role players, including Nicolas Batum, who apparently retired instead of reporting to the 76ers. His wife had said before the season that this would be his last.
Harden is set to make his debut tonight, but the real question is what’s the over/under on when he demands a trade from the Clippers?
The In-Season Tournament is off and running
The NBA released some wild court designs to show off the in-season tournament, and we got to see them in action last Friday night. They’re a lot to look at, but think they’ll be fun in small doses. And I’m excited for the text that I’m inevitably going to get from my mom when she sees the Hornets court for the first time and complains about it.
More importantly, the games were good. They count as regular season games, so there’s no reason for players to sandbag them, and the first round of games delivered. All seven games were decided by single digits, and three of them were decided by two points. So far, so good.
Breaking news: Rookies need time to catch up to the NBA
Through two weeks, there are four rookies averaging double figures in scoring–Victor Wembanyama, Chet Holmgren, Brandon Miller, and Ausar Thompson. Wembanyama and Holmgren have unsurprisingly made the quickest transition, but it’s rare for players to make an immediate impact as rookies. It’d be pretty cool if one of those players was on our favorite team.
Not that anyone cares, but Scoot Henderson is averaging 8.8 points, 4.6 assists, and 4.0 turnovers per game while shooting 9.5% from three. He’s going to be a player and this is an indictment on the type of career he’s going to have, but maybe the choice at number two wasn’t as much of a slam dunk as many people thought it was.
It’s also not just him. Outside of players taken in the top two, only Ausar Thompson has really done much of anything. except for maybe Dereck Lively as a dunker for Luka Doncic and Marcus Sasser as a backup guard for the Pistons.
Jerami Grant is coming for Kobe and Wilt
This is a dumb throwaway section, but I thought it was mildly interesting when I stumbled across it. Jerami Grant has increased his scoring output in seven straight games to start the seaosn–13, 15, 17, 22, 24, 26, 27. At this rate, he’ll be dropping like 150 by season’s end.
Every Team in the NBA has won a game, but not everybody has lost
The last NBA team finally got a win on Sunday. The Memphis Grizzlies outscored the Blazers 26-2 over the last 7:53 of their game on Sunday night to come back and notch their first win of the season. That’s what happens when you give Bismack Biyomobo the start. Miss that guy.
Meanwhile, the Celtics are 5-0 with an average margin of victory of 18.4 points. So far there’s a clear winner in that trade.