This season has had some surprises and complete duds. Here is a breakdown of the Eastern and Western Conferences and mid-season awards.
Surprise Team: The Charlotte Bobcats. Though this team plays in the less competitive Eastern Conference, this team currently holds the #5 spot in the East. Some may say the Atlanta Hawks are the surprise team but the last couple seasons, they showed promise and it was only a matter of time until they started winning continuously. The Bobcats have a mixture of veterans and some young talent and are led by all-star hopeful Gerald Wallace. In seasons past, they showed some potential, but failed to get over the hump. This year, they are maintaining a consistent (or more consistent) type of play.
Most Disappointing Team: The New Jersey Nets. Need I say more? This team (at its current pace) will win 6 maybe 7 games this season. The '72-73 Philadelphia 76ers set the record nearly 4 decades ago with 9 wins in a season winning just under 11% of their games. Right now, the Nets are winning just above 7%. The '95-96 Bulls set the standard for stability but this year's Nets are setting the standard for futility.
Surprise Team: (T-1) The Oklahoma City Thunder and the Houston Rockets. Why did I choose 2 teams? Well, the Thunder are playing well in the highly competitive Western Conference and currently hold the #7 spot and are led by probable all-star Kevin Durant. But it hasn't just been Durant as the rest of the team has used its young talent into a more cohesive unit. If the playoffs started today, they would be facing the Dallas Mavs. Normally the 7th seed would have no shot but if they keep their pace up, they could be a dangerous team no matter what seed they are.
You have an injured all-star center (Yao Ming) and you really don't have a superstar that stands out, so what do you do? You use your good role players and make them stronger by playing as a team. I honestly thought this year's Rockets were going to be a lottery team but are battling for the 8th seed in the rugged Western Conference. The Jazz are streaking but anything can happen. The Rockets are led by leading 6th Man of the Year candidate Carl Landry. The Rockets have been consistent with players who have a history of not being consistent with their health.
Most Disappointing Team: Minnesota T-Wolves. This team thus far is the only team in the West not to have at least 10 games in the win column but yet have 3 times more wins than the Nets. The lottery is up for grabs for between the Nets and T-Wolves so far.
MVP: This is a tough one between LeBron James and Kobe Bryant. Both teams are first in their respective conferences (but the Lakers do have the better overall record but not by much). Right now though, I may say LeBron is barely edging out Kobe as he and the Cavs did beat the Lakers Christmas day. But right now, this is the mid-season and anything can change in the course of the 2nd half of the season.
Best Rookie : Tyreke Evans. This may get some arguments because it is a one-two fight for ROY between him and Brandon Jennings. Milwaukee is in better position for a playoff spot which may lean the votes over to Jennings but Tyreke I think has been more consistent and a better overall player.
Defensive Player: Dwight Howard. He is at the tops in blocks and boards yet again but if he wants his Magic to do better and move his name further along the MVP discussion, I think he will need to be more aggressive on the offensive end to help his team out, especially when they are battling the Hawks in their division.
Overall, this season has been interesting. The Bobcats and Thunder who were lottery teams the past few seasons, are now pushing themselves in the playoff picture. Some teams are downright atrocious while others have punched their tickets for a more than playoff supremacy but championship supremacy. It should be interesting to see where this season continues.
The Nuggets are the same as they were last season, which is disturbing because - like last season - they play down to the level of their competition. They're one of a handful of teams who have lost to the god damn Timberwolves.
I would have argued that Brandon Jennings would have to be the ROY this season, but that was before I started paying attention to Tyreke Evans. Dude is playing out of his mind. There's no question that if he continues playing this way he's the ROY. Hell, the kid is playing like he thinks he has a shot at the Western Conference All-Star team!
Originally posted by geemoneyNo love for the Grizz as surprise team? I love what they've done, and I think they're only a strong point guard and a good bench player or two away from seriously contending.
The Griz I would put 2nd as I thought about putting them in my category of "surprise team". And yes, I do agree with you a lot that the Griz are a strong point guard away and some bench players away from being a good playoff contending team (though I would put a couple bench players ahead of a strong point guard b/c the Griz have some talent up front and starting but need some catalysts off the bench).
The Griz are above the .500 which is good in the highly competitive Western Conference. They are challenging for the 8th spot and even the 7th spot which these 2 spots are currently up for grabs depending on who maintains consistency, who slides after the all-star break or who breaks away from the pack.
Originally posted by StingArmyI would have argued that Brandon Jennings would have to be the ROY this season, but that was before I started paying attention to Tyreke Evans. Dude is playing out of his mind. There's no question that if he continues playing this way he's the ROY. Hell, the kid is playing like he thinks he has a shot at the Western Conference All-Star team!
I think Tyreke Evans is all-star worthy but perhaps would or should get bumped by better guards going to the mid-season classic. Brandon Jennings is playing around all-star caliber as well. These 2 rookies have a very bright future in the NBA.
I'd really like to see the Knicks get a serviceable PG, Duhon has looked terrible for most of the season. Getting into the #8 seed would be a nice first step, but it would be even nicer to see the #1 pick that Utah owns not be a lottery pick.
I think Memphis is definitely the surprise team in the NBA right now. They had a disastrous start, and ever since ditching Iverson, they've gotten much better. I do believe they were 10 games under .500 and have now won like 11 straight at home. That's pretty impressive. I like the Grizzlies young talent and think they'll be a contender in a year or two. Sacramento and Oklahoma City are getting better too. Really, LA Clippers, Golden State, and Minnesota are the only bsd teams in the West now.
I don't care about the Eastern Conference as my team (Wizards) are a disaster.
Thread ahead: Report claims NCAA Tournament to expand to 96 teams Next thread: Gilbert Arenas and Javaris Crittenton suspended for the rest of the season Previous thread: Jim Calhoun steps aside for a while.
He may be dirty, but he worked damn hard even with the knee injury and assumed the "wise old veteran" role rather well this season. Nuff respect Mailman. http://www.dailynews.com/ Stories/ 0,1413,200~28541~2245082,00.html EDIT: