The start of this year’s NBA season has been very fun to watch so far. What makes it so watchable is the quality of great players in the league. It is always good to see “good” players become “great” and “great” players to become “good”. Players that have impressed many people so far this season include; Anthony Davis, Paul George, and LaMarcus Aldridge.
What George has done with the Indiana Pacers team so far this season is simply amazing. He has officially put the team on his shoulders and has them in great position early in the season currently holding the best record in the Eastern Conference with a (12-1) record. The Pacers now as a team look like they will be the team to beat this year in the East (other than Miami).
Every week here on Buckets Over Broadway, I will provide the fans with a Top 5 NBA MVP Rankings and then will follow with a couple players whose stock is going up, and who’s is going down:
1. Paul George, F, Indiana Pacers Stats: 24.2 ppg, 6.2 rpg, and 3.2 apg
Paul George went toe-to-toe with one of the best scorers in the game, Carmelo Anthony, during Wednesday night’s game at Madison Square Garden and finished with 35 points and countless clutch plays in Indiana’s OT win. After last year’s playoffs, George emerged onto the scene after a spectacular performance in the Eastern Conference Finals against the Heat, but it is now official- he is a star to reckoned with in this league for years to come. Let the MVP talk has officially begun for the young star in Indiana.
Paul established a new NBA record with his 20 points and 11 assists in Wednesday’s win over the Minnesota Timberwolves, becoming the first player in NBA history to start the season with double-digit points and assists in 12 straight games. Paul seems even better than he has before which many thought was impossible. He has led the Clippers off to a good start to the season with a 10-5 record and they are currently fourth in the Western Conference. Paul is indeed the leader in a position that dominates the NBA which speaks very highly of his talent.
Although the Heat had a rocky start to their season, LeBron maintained to keep the reigning back-to-back champions focused enough to bounce back with a six-game winning streak. The Heat are now second in the East with a 10-3 record and most of that early success of course is credited to the play of “King James”. LeBron arguably reached one of the most impressive milestones he will ever reach in his career this past week and that alone brought him back into the MVP consideration after struggling the first few games. He’s the first player since Shaquille O’Neal (1997) to average 25 or more points on 60 percent shooting from the floor through the first 12 games of a season. Obviously, LeBron shoots a ton more jump shots than Shaq did, so that achievement is nothing less than amazing.
“Durantula” is arguably the best scorer in the league and he continues to prove that every night he steps foot on the floor. He has already won the scoring title three times and he is only 25 years old. A lot of critics point out how much he scores is solely because he shoots so many free throws, but how exactly is that a negative? He draws that much attention and is so dominant that the only thing left for the defense to do is to foul him. So far this season, Durant is averaging 12.5 free throw attempts per game which is pretty high, but that what’s you get when you’re a superstar and you get “superstar calls”.
5. Kevin Love, F, Minnesota Timberwolves Stats: 24.9 ppg, 13.6 rpg
A guy that maybe a week ago was being talked about the most and there is great reason for that. Love has turned a completely mediocre team around and has made them a contender almost single handedly. The Timberwolves were off to a very hot start to begin this season, but now are struggling a bit which brings down Love’s stock a bit. Love is still playing tremendous so far and if he continues they may return to the postseason, but the ongoing issue with Love is durability— can he stay healthy?
LaMarcus Aldridge, F, Portland Trailblazers
Anthony Davis, F/C, New Orleans Pelicans
The “Impressive Star of the Week” goes to Anthony Davis, who has been the most impressive by far drawing comparisons to Kevin Garnett at the tender age of 20 which we all know was truly a dynamic player. Back then, “The Big Ticket” was a wunderkind who played above and beyond his physical means thanks an overall relentlessness and refusal to be outworked by any foe of any size.