NBA First Half Awards
With the season just over halfway done, let's look at the major awards. Feel free to disagree but it's James Hardens world right now and we're just living in it.
The NBA has been a full of surprises to start the 2018-2019 season. It has been a lot more interesting and even though the Golden State Warriors are still dominating, everything else has been unpredictable. Who are the top 10 teams so far this season?
10. Sacramento Kings: Who would have ever thought the Sacramento Kings would be good at all this season? I predicted them to finish last in the west this season. They are defying the odds right now and the Kings have not made it to the playoffs since 2006. De'Aaron Fox and Buddy Hield is leading that back court. Dave Joerger is doing a very good job coaching these guys so far this season, but will see if the winning lasts. The Sacramento Kings record so far this season is 6-4.
9. Philadelphia 76ers: The 76ers should be better than they actually are. Philadelphia is off to a 6-5 start. Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid has not been the issue for them. Markelle Fultz has been an issue for them and he hasn't show much promise this season. The Philadelphia 76ers have very good role players and they also play good defense. The 76ers are winless on the road and they are undefeated at home.
8. San Antiono Spurs: The Spurs are legit year in and year out under Greg Popovich. They don't have the speed like they used to. DeMar DeRozan is thriving under Popovich's system and he is averaging 27.3 PPG, 5.6 RPG, and 6.7 APG so far this season. San Antonio's record so far this season is 6-3. LaMarcus Aldridge is also having another good season. Bryn Forbes has been an x-factor this season for the Spurs. He is averaging 12.7 PPG.
7. Portland Trail Blazers: Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum continues to be the story of this franchise. Terry Stotts is a phenomenal head coach. Portland's record so far this season is 7-3. They also play very good defense. I thought they didn't make enough adjustments to the roster this past offseason to be a possible playoff team this season. The Portland Trail Blazers are ignoring their doubters right now.
6. Boston Celtics: The Celtics record so far this season is 6-3. They have a loaded roster and they will get into a groove at some point. Boston is trying to find the right chemistry. Brad Stevens is the best coach in basketball.
5. Indiana Pacers: The Pacers have been a different franchise ever since trading Paul George. A lot of people thought they would have to start over, but that hasn't been the case. Victor Oladipo has developed into a star and a leader inside the locker room. Indiana is following his lead and it is paying off. Damontas Sabonis has also played well for the Indiana Pacers. They also have other pieces in place like Myles Turner, Tyreke Evans, Bojan Bogdanovic, and Thaddeus Young. Indiana's record so far this season is 7-3.
4. Denver Nuggets: The Nuggets have a deep roster, but Nikola Jokic is the glue to this team. He will take this team as far he takes them. Jokic is averaging 18 PPG and 10 RPG so far this season. He is one of the most underrated players in the NBA. Nikola Jokic has a positive vibe inside the Denver Nuggets locker room. Denver is off to an 8-1 start. Jamal Murray and Gary Harris Jr. is an under appreciated back court and it is also a lethal one.
3. Milwaukee Bucks: Giannis Antetokounmpo is getting the help he needs this season. Mike Budenholzer is making an early impact on his team. They are off to an 8-1 start because of this. Milwaukee has the talent to be one of the best teams in the NBA and it might finally be coming together. Milwaukee is very good defensively. If they can score the ball consistently, the Milwaukee Bucks will be a tough team to stop.
2. Toronto Raptors: The Raptors present problems on both ends of the floor and they also present problems with their depth. Kawhi Leonard is making an impact for Toronto early on and Kyle Lowry is playing more fluently. Nick Nurse is bringing a different philosophy to the table. Toronto's record so far this season is 9-1.
1. Golden State Warriors: What else is new in the NBA world? The Golden State Warriors remain the best team in the NBA and it isn't a surprise by any means. Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, and Kevin Durant continue to score from anywhere and everywhere. DeMarcus Cousins hasn't even seen the court yet and they will be impossible to stop at some point. Golden State's record so far this season is 9-1.