Time to wake up from that prolonged turkey induced coma, everyone. While the holidays were filled with the three “F”s of Family, Food, and Football, we at the Pick and Pop did not forget that there was NBA basketball to be played. You know, since it’s our job not to forget.
Here is what you missed:
1) Injuries. They Happened.
Yup, everyone got hurt. Hands and knees did not have the greatest month to say the least. Bones and tendons just could not catch a break leading into the holiday season.
2) Kobe Back?
The Mamba is
tentatively, supposedly, allegedly coming back on Friday to make his season debut against the Sacramento Kings. Kobe playing is great for the NBA and the fans, but is it good for the Lakers? Players will have to carve out new roles for themselves and Mike D’antoni will essentially have to relearn how to coach this team. I don’t see any other way around it with Kobe back in the fold. The comeback will be interesting to monitor since this team has been playing a very fun brand of basketball without a dedicated go-to scorer. Oh, and they have a better record than Chicago, Brooklyn and New York. Which reminds me…
3) New York Basketball Is Bad. Like Really Bad
“Ew” doesn’t even begin to describe how the Knicks have been playing. Does anyone remember that this team was a TWO seed just last year? It goes to show that even if you keep a team together, the results can certainly vary. If basketball games were scored on comments made to the media and free agent speculation, the Knicks would be the league’s best team. Unfortunately, they are scored by way of points, something the Knicks can get a bit better at producing (25th in the league). They can also stand to rebound (26th) and pass (24th) better. You know, basic basketball stuff.
This is where the Nets are at right now. A bunch of bombed out and depleted hall of famers, disgruntled/overpaid guards and a coach that is in way over his head. Overall, this Nets team is Benny Hill-grade comedy, but from a basketball standpoint, things are just plain ugly. Proclaimed as one of the top teams in the league prior to playing a game, the Nets have lost to the Cavs, Pistons, Bobcats, Kings, Wizards, and Lakers. Thank goodness they beat the Jazz and have yet to play the Bucks or else they would have somehow managed to lose to every bad team in the league. Chemistry issues aside, it is abundantly clear that Father Time has never been defeated. We are living in an age where a significant Paul Pierce injury is responded to with “meh” and “oh well” as opposed to panic mode. At this point, with the season he has been having, a Paul Pierce injury is equivalent to a tree falling in a forest.
4) The Western Conference Is A Tad Bit Better Than The Eastern Conference
The Western Conference has 3 teams below .500 and the Eastern Conference has 12. Goes to show that cold weather can really bring down a mood. Also, will an angel lose it’s wings when the Bucks and the Jazz face off on January 2nd?
5) Fun Stuff Happened
Some guy named Hollis Thompson dunked on the entire history of the Milwaukee Bucks franchise:
Steph Curry put Serge Ibaka on ice skates, because it’s seasonably appropriate
You know that problem Victor Oladipo has where he goes too fast, jumps too high, and dunks too hard? Me neither.
John Wall potentially killed a small child with this block on Iman Shumpert
Spencer Hawes says “Don’t forget about me and my fundamentally sound follow-through”
Hope you’re all caught up.