Best Games to Watch in Week 24
Monday March 26: Denver Nuggets at Philadelphia 76ers. Denver is fighting for the last playoff spot in the West. The 76ers are on a roll. This should be a great game to watch!
Tuesday March 27: Portland Trail Blazers at New Orleans Pelicans. This should be a fun game to watch and a possible first round Western Conference playoff matchup!!
Wednesday March 28: Brooklyn Nets at Orlando Magic. If you like to watch teams score points these two non-defensive teams will make your evening!
Thursday March 29: Milwaukee Bucks at Golden State Warriors. This should be an interesting game between a banged up Warriors squad and a young, hungry Bucks team.
Friday March 30: Denver Nuggets at Oklahoma City Thunder. The Nuggets are fighting against a Thunder team that doesn’t always show up.
Saturday March 31: Toronto Raptors at Boston Celtics. The top two seeds in the East collide on a Saturday night.
Sunday April 1: Milwaukee Bucks at Denver Nuggets. The Nuggets are the team to watch down the stretch!!
Do Triple Doubles Really Win Games?
The Triple Double; when I began watching the NBA it was rare to see a player accomplish this. Nowadays it seems like someone racks up a Triple Double nightly and it doesn’t seem to be the big deal it was back in the 70’s.
That got me wondering how teams of these players fare on nights when a triple double is achieved. As of March 20, 2018 there have been 96 recorded Triple Doubles in 2,126 regular season games in the NBA . Below is a table of each player with at least two triple doubles from the 2017-2018 season.
So what does this actually mean?
One thing that stood out to me were the amount of turnovers committed during the Triple Double; I would have thought it was higher than their season average and in the case of LeBron James (4.3), Ben Simmons (2.7), Nikola Jokic (2.8), Blake Griffin (3.0), Lonzo Ball (2.7), Rajon Rondo (2.2), Nicolas Batum (2.0), Elfrid Payton (2.7) and James Harden (4.3). Surprisingly those with less turnovers than their season average are Russell Westbrook (4.7) Boogie Cousins (5.0), Draymond Green (2.8), Kevin Durant (3.1) and Kyle Lowry (2.3).
The other thing that stood out was the amount of Field Goal attempts taken during their Triple Double night; I would have thought players would be shooting more shots than usual. Russell Westbrook (21.1), LeBron James (19.3), Jokic (12.6), Harden (20.4), Cousins (18), Green (9.1), Griffin (17.3), Durant (18), Rondo (7.4) and Payton (10.7) each took more shots than their season average. Those who shot at or even less than their average number of shots in their Triple Double were Simmons (12.8), Lowry (12.2) and Batum (10.6).
You would also think that with the amount of shots being jacked up their percentage would go down wouldn’t you? That is the case for Westbrook (45.4), James (54.5), Simmons (54.3), Green (44.3), Durant (52), Lowry (36) and Payton (49) however Jokic (49), Harden (44), Cousins (47), Rondo (46), Griffin (43), Ball (35), Batum (41) all outperformed their season shooting percentage.
The points differential in wins also makes sense to me; you had some high scoring performaces in some of these wins. Players recording games of 30 points or more in wins were; Westbrook (4), James (5), Jokic (1), Harden (2), Griffin (1), Cousins (1) and Durant (1).
We can look at these stats and others like free throw attempts, triple attempts until we are blue in the face and the bottom line for me is this; players recording triple doubles may be less efficient and in most cases shoot the ball worse than their season averages but lead their teams to victories. At least this is the case for the 2017-2018 season.
*LeBron James is the only one on the above table that recorded a Quadruple Double……..he accomplished this feat on January 26, 2018 against the Indiana Pacers where he scored 26 points, ten rebounds, ten assists and ELEVEN TURNOVERS. The Cavaliers still won the game 115-108.
Quin Snyder for NBA Coach of the Year?
Last week I gave you my shortlist for NBA Coach of the Year. I thought it was a good conversation starter type of list and I left off one name that should have been obvious but apparently wasn’t.
Utah Jazz Head Coach Quin Snyder should be the NBA Coach of the Year and there shouldn’t be that much of an argument either.
The Jazz lost Gordon Hayward to Free Agency. He was their best player and they got ZERO compensation for him. The Jazz has a difficult enough time scoring the ball with Hayward’s 21 points a night and losing that should have sent their organization straight to Lottery hell.
George Hill walks after the Jazz trade the OKC Thunder 2018 first round pick to Minnesota for Ricky Rubio. Snyder lost two important starters and inherited a point guard with huge question marks about his offensive skills.
Center Rudy Gobert missed 26 games this season with various ailments, Thabo Sefalosha was lost for the season in January and backup point guard Dante Exum is just now returning from injury.
Thirteen starting lineups later and some unexpected play from Rookie of the Year candidate Donovan Mitchell see the Jazz currently sitting in the eighth spot in the West.
The calling card for the Jazz has always been their defense and the Snyder era hasn’t been any different; since the All-Star break the Jazz have the third best efficiency rating in the League (101.9).
Snyder has my vote for NBA Coach of the Year but the Jazz will have to make the playoffs for Snyder to win the Award. The Jazz have a tough row to hoe with only three of their remaining nine games coming against below .500 teams but with a two game lead over the Nuggets I think the Jazz get in and if they do Snyder has to be NBA Coach of the Year!!
Blake Griffin Discusses the Difference Between the Clippers and Pistons
Blake Griffin has finally decided to
throw some shade discuss his trade from the Los Angeles Clippers to the Detroit Pistons. It’s kinda interesting and also hardly unexpected so let’s dive in.
“If I wasn’t happy with where I was at or excited to be here, it would take a little bit longer,” Griffin said. “But as soon as I got here to Detroit, the franchise, the way they go about taking care of the players, the way they do everything, is first-class. So, that makes the transition much easier. [Coach] Stan [Van Gundy] and the whole staff has been awesome. I’m not looking back.
“I haven’t put much thought into it, to be honest. I’ve been so focused on making this transition and [adjusting] to this change that I haven’t put that much thought into it. I never want to be in a place where I’m not wanted. Coming here made me realize what a franchise looks like.”
The Clippers finally figured out they weren’t going to win diddly with Griffin on the squad they decided to unload him. As I pointed out last week the Clippers have fared far better without Griffin and if it only took me 15 minutes to figure this out why did it take the Clippers so darn long? Maybe that’s what Griffin meant with the “what a franchise should look like” crack?
Can I let you in on a little secret?
The Detroit Pistons were 22-26 prior to trading for Griffin and 10-14 since acquiring the five time NBA All-Star. For the Pistons sake I hope it doesn’t take as long as it did the Clippers to realize they ain’t winning with him either!
Top Five Whiniest Teams Part 2
I posted the following in my Fantasy Basketball related posting “Ten Things About the NBA” at Creative Sports 2. I thought you would get a kick out of it!!
Way back in November I gave you a list of five of the most teched teams in the NBA. You might want to revisit the original list to see what has changed. We have a couple of newcomers like the Pistons while Houston has dropped out. Here are the worst offenders.
5). Detroit Pistons: It takes quite a bit of whining to rack up 57 team techs but that’s where the Pistons are at. Blake Griffin and Andre Drummond have done their fair share of complaining this season and had I not looked it up I would have never guessed the Pistons were in the top five. Griffin has also has one ejection to his credit.
5). Golden State Warriors: No surprise here. The only surprise is the Warriors aren’t still tied for the worst. Kevin Durant, Stephen Curry and Draymond Green have missed a bunch of games this season otherwise the Whiniers would be hands down the whiniest team in the NBA. Durant also leads the League in most ejections (4) and Green is tied for second after being bounced three times this season.
4). Los Angeles Clippers: New to the list but known whiners are the Clippers. My goodness does this team cry. Griffin being the main one when he was a Clipper but Austin Rivers has four techs and his daddy Head Coach Glenn “Doc” Rivers has a bunch of them too.
3). Charlotte Hornets: I had no idea this team whined as much as they do. Wednesday night Dwight Howard became the eighth player in NBA history to record a 30-30 game and the first player this season to be suspended for one game for racking up 16 technical fouls. Kemba Walker has six tech’s and Frank Kaminsky has four.
2). Oklahoma City Thunder: Last season the Thunder behaved themselves with only 51 techs. This season is a different story; Russell Westbrook has 13 techs and one ejection, Carmelo Anthony has nine and an ejection and Paul George and Steven Adams each have been T’d up seven times. The Thunder might not ever win an NBA Championship but if there were a Championship for whining and pouting the Thunder would be perennial contenders.
1). 1). Phoenix Suns: The Suns are not only one of the worst teams around but they are also the whiniest team in the NBA. T.J. Warren, Devin Booker and Josh Jackson lead the way with nine techs. Marquese Chriss is running a close second with eight T’s. The Suns have also had six players ejected this season. Wow. Okay; much of those ejections were the result of this fight with the Utah Jazz but still. I will leave you with the fight with the Jazz!!
You can reach Phil on Twitter. Listen to his Fantasy Basketball show on Fantrax and his NBA show the Phil Naessens Show.