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.
Don't rush for the season to ramp up, because you might miss something.
It’s been a week, the NBA season is in full swing and so far, exciting. I’m not one who becomes attached to the start of a season, because there’s plenty of basketball to be played. However, the season has produced some great intrigue so far. The Bucks, currently, are the only unbeaten squad in the league (7-0). The surprises thus far, are the OKC Thunder and the Houston Rockets. The Thunder look like they’re still dusting off the off-season cob-webs; while the Rockets look lost without their floor general, Chris Paul (ahem, 2016 playoffs, looks familiar?). Looking at the Thunder, both Westbrook and George are not clicking so far. Rus is playing like he did during his MVP season, doing it all by himself (or trying to); even though he doesn’t need to.
The Lakers are what they are at the moment, pieces that hopefully are slowly going to fit with a lot of time. The Rondo-Paul-Ingram swing-fest was what the Lakers needed and didn’t need at the moment. They needed the fracas because they were the young “we-too-cool” team; that at times you had to wonder if it mattered to them that at some point they would like to see the playoffs. But then, they didn’t need the fracas because, this team needs ALL of its pieces in place to keep working together. Two things that has been noticeable; they keep running in each other’s way, thus creating plenty of turnovers. Then there’s JaVale McGee whose been playing like a total different player than he’s ever been for the past four or five years. The question this season will be; when will LeBron’s patience run out?
DeMar DeRozan is fitting in quite well with the Spurs and leading them despite losing two of their guards, one who is on the rise, DeJounte Murray, who is lost for the season with a torn ACL. Their rookie guard, Lonnie Walker is also lost for 6-8 weeks of the season as he too has a knee injury. Kawhi Leonard along with Kyle Lowery has made the Raptors a run-away freight train so far, so the trade for DeRozan and Leonard has worked well for both teams. But once again, the Milwaukee Bucks is the only undefeated team in the league but they’re not getting much attention as they should.
Anthony Davis has already proclaimed that he’s the best player in the league and he’s going on an MVP campaign, the last time we saw this happen; Derrick Rose went on a rampage to win MVP honors in 2011, so maybe Davis may be onto something, once he stays healthy.
The New York Knicks have already started courting upcoming free agent, Kevin Durant, and the season has just begun. The organization has placed a huge billboard outside of MSG welcoming KD. Hey, they’re only going to see him once at the Garden but twice in the Big Apple, why not make him see it again when the Warriors come in town to play the Nets in Brooklyn.
The Detroit Pistons has silently made a blip on the Eastern Conference radar. Blake Griffin leading the way reminding people that he can still play at an all-star level, he just needed a change of scenery. There have even been a few Ish Smith sightings, making a few of those guarding him go in the other direction. Pay attention to this team in mid-season.
The pulse of the league is starting to beat in a slow rhythm, but as we all know, within a month, the NBA’s pulse will become the NBA pulse: fast and steady. The mid season will clear things up for us. Now to be on watch for those fan bases that will be honest with themselves.