The Brooklyn Nets are offering a regular glimpse of their firepower while LeBron James continues his quest towards another NBA MVP Award despite taking over an unwanted record.
Nets Coming Together
It’s been a disrupted start for the new-look Brooklyn Nets. Kyrie Irving failed to turn up in the week following the James Harden trade while Kevin Durant has missed time due to health and safety protocols. But when this superstar trio comes together on the court, we can see why they’re on the second line of betting to win the NBA Championship at $5.
Brooklyn’s defence is still atrocious. Their 114.1 defensive rating ranks 23rd in the league and isn’t getting better. They’ve played with the seventh-worst defensive rating over the last two weeks at 119.3. They are just that good on the offensive end, though. Fourth overall in offensive rating, you can see why they’re so dangerous in games like their 134-117 win over the Golden State Warriors. All three filled the box score and gave the Warriors too much to defend.
Kevin Durant: 20 points, 8-19FG, 6 assists, 5 rebounds, 2 blocks
Kyrie Irving: 23 points, 10-17FG, 4 assists, 5 rebounds, 1 steal
James Harden: 19 points, 5-8FG, 16 assists, 8 rebounds, 3 steals, 1 block
James Harden assists per game with the Nets:
16 tonight pic.twitter.com/lvDfYIZ0mV
— StatMuse (@statmuse) February 14, 2021
The 117 points the Nets gave up remains an issue. Their offensive firepower is what will keep them afloat during the regular season as they work towards a championship-calibre defence.
When you’ve played 1,292 games and 49,488 minutes of NBA basketball, you’re going to set some unflattering records. It’s one of the negative sides to playing at such a high level for so long.
Last night, LeBron James broke another record.
He now has the most turnovers in NBA history, with 4,525 of them.
— Legion Hoops (@LegionHoops) February 13, 2021
The late, great Kobe Bryant missed an NBA record 14,481 field goals throughout his career. LeBron James is 6th on that list with 12,554 right now.
Also right now: James is a $3 favourite to win the 2020-21 Most Valuable Player award.
Curry Is Cooking
Remember when Steph Curry barely played basketball for over a year and started this season a little bit slow before people called him “washed”?
Silly, silly, silly, silly.
Dan Devine crunched the numbers to find Chef Curry is connecting on three-pointers at a better clip than his MVP season.
If I've done the math right, Steph now has 131 3-pointers in 26 games. In a 72-game season, that puts him on pace for 363. In an 82-game season, that'd be 413 — more than he made during his unanimous MVP season.
So, y'know, he's good.
— Dan Devine (@YourManDevine) February 12, 2021
He hit another two in game 27 to push his season total out to 133. Buddy Hield is second on the list a whopping 34 makes behind Curry.
The Warriors don’t have the wins for Curry to be part of the conversation just yet. They’re 14-13 to be the 8th seed, just ahead of the Dallas Mavericks who are riding a four-game winning streak into the playoff picture. But with Draymond Green looking back to his best and Curry catching fire, the wins are sloooowly starting to lift. Currently on the fifth line of betting at $10, Curry will shorten if the Warriors can flirt with the 5th seed.
“Voters love to use an inevitable MVP award in the future (for Doncic in this case) as a reason to vote for somebody else. They also LOVE a narrative. Curry coming back from injury to lead the Golden State Warriors from being the worst team in the NBA and into the playoffs? Narrative ticked.” – NBA Bold Predictions
Away Dogs Cooling Off
We covered how well road dogs have started the 2020-21 NBA season last week. Out at 54.5% throughout the first six weeks of the season, their cover rate blew out as far as 55.5%. With another week of games in the books that cover rate is back down to 54.4%.
Regression towards the mean isn’t a surprise; trends are volatile and this one was unlikely to last much longer. However, it’s still worth keeping an eye on for another week.
NBA Against The Spread Standings
After Week 8
|Top 10||Bottom 10|
|Jazz (20-7)||Magic (12-15)|
|Suns (16-9)||Nets (12-16)|
|Hornets (15-11-1)||Nuggets (11-14)|
|Spurs (15-11)||Pelicans (11-14)|
|Clippers (15-12)||Raptors (11-15)|
|Knicks (15-13)||Mavericks (11-16)|
|Thunder (14-10-1)||Rockets (10-16)|
|76ers (14-11-2)||Cavaliers (10-17)|
|Pistons (14-11-1)||Wizards (9-14)|
|Bulls (14-11)||Heats (9-16-1)|