Stats as of 11/11/2017:
Celtics (11-2) / Win Streak: 11
Pistons (9-3) / Win Streak : 4
Magic (8-4) / Win Streak: 2
Raptors (7-4) Win Streak: 2
Wizards, Kicks, 76ers, Heat, Pacers (all 6-7)
Rockets (9-3) / Win Streak: 4
Warriors (9-3) / Win Streak: 5
Timberwolves, Grizzlies, Spurs, Nuggets (all 7-5)
Trail Blazers, Pelicans (6-6)
On the Court
I have been getting a ton of feedback from readers (thank you!!!) telling me that my information is great, but they already knew most of it. So I decided to jump into a concept that has always been a little confusing to me (and maybe needs some clarification to you too). Okay, but, how hard is it to understand a turnover? To be fair, I just couldn’t conceptualize how a TOV converts to the terminology of interceptions or pick-6’s seeing as football is my native sport language. I first started paying attention to turnovers when they started meaning something to me personally in fantasy basketball. For example, I drafted Dwight Howard of the Charlotte Hornets who is already averaging a higher turnover rate this season than any of his last 13 years in the NBA.
So, what happens with these turnovers, and how do they affect the whole team?
Well, for Howard and the Hornets, TOVs don’t contribute to the score all that much. The Hornets average about only 13 points a game off of picking up the ball from the opposing team and bringing it back to their net. On the other side of the spectrum, TOVs are pretty important to teams like the Utah Jazz, the Toronto Raptors, the Golden State Warriors, OKC, and the Detroit Pistons. All of these teams successfully pick up the ball and score around 20 (or more) points per game. It’s also important to consider how good these teams are at defending the ball once they lose it. Teams like the Memphis Grizzlies, The Boston Celtics, OKC, The Charlotte Hornets, and the Detroit Pistons are pretty good at performing clean defense to make sure that the other team doesn’t score off of their TOVs. Each of these teams keeps the opponent’s points off of TOVs under about 15 per game. Again, on the opposite end of the spectrum, the Minnesota Timberwolves, the Denver Nuggets (my favorite team name), the LA Lakers, and the NY Knicks allow more than 20 points per game from TOVs, which is pretty bad. In examining the advanced splits, it seems like a lot of these points are gained from free throws. To me, this just shows that once ball control is lost, the concept of man-to-man defense is lost, the play on the court gets sloppy, and fouls are easily called by the refs who need a way to make clarity out of quick chaos.
Off the Court
Injury reports can be scary, but they’re pretty reasonable when the injury is made clear. Players with injuries typically get an updated “day-to-day” status as new information is acquired. Usually injuries are easy to understand, such as Steven Adams (OKC) and his calf contusion, Elfrid Payton (Orlando Magic) and his hamstring, or DeAndre Bembry (Atlanta Hawks) and his wrist. Others are a little more confusing, like Tyler Zeller’s (Brooklyn Nets) sinus “illness”, or how Kristaps Porzingis (NY Knicks) is having ankle and elbow problems, or Josh McRoberts (Dallas Mavericks) has “lower body” issues. However, I find concussions to be even more confusing. Concussions are the kind of injury that take a while to reveal actual symptoms. With the questioning of Al Horford and Kyrie Irving’s concussion probability, I wanted to examine the NBA concussion protocol.
Per NBA standards, a player who is in the concussion protocol program is not allowed to return until he is without concussion-related symptoms when at rest. After he has been evaluated by the team’s physician (who ultimately determines a player’s eligibility to return to the court), he must successfully complete the NBA return-to-participation exertion protocol. This includes stationary biking, jogging, agility tests, and non-contact team drills. After this, the team physician must discuss the return-to-participation process and decision with the director of the NBA concussion program, Dr. Jeffrey Kutcher.
Unfortunately for Celtics fans, it is important to note that there is no time frame standard to this protocol. Each player has his own individual plan, which may mean a long wait until we hear any news about Al Horford or Kyrie Irving.
The Court Itself
To Swoosh or Not to Swoosh
Last week when my boyfriend (Anthony) and I were watching the Magic vs. Celtics game, I gasped “OMG what happened to the Adidas uniforms?!” as the camera panned close to Kyrie’s jersey, and Anthony casually informed me that this was old news. Apparently the NBA had signed a contract with Nike a long time ago. (This kind of sounded familiar, but please remember that football is my native sports language so I thought that maybe the NBA uniforms changed as frequently as the NFL ones do?) Anyway, I couldn’t let Anthony have more knowledge about this topic than I did, so I looked into it.
Reportedly, Nike will pay the NBA $1 billion over 8 seasons for the right to use their logo all over NBA players, meaning that Nike is the new supplier of all uniforms for every NBA team, including the socks. However, not all of the players are happy with this. Stephen Curry is the face of Under Armour, so he is rolling down the tops of his white high socks so that the Nike Swoosh can’t be seen. James Harden, the face of Adidas, also does not want to be seen as a Nike athlete, either. He started off by following Curry’s lead by rolling his socks down, but recently he has been going as far as cutting the logo off the socks completely. Personally, I am loving how extra this is. It reminds me of the famous meme of Harding rolling his eyes at the reporter, and I honestly support it all. I refuse to wear Nike shoes with Adidas pants, it’s a sports-fashion no-no.
Nina is a 20 year old college student from Massachusetts. She loved playing and analyzing sports her whole life and is an avid fantasy football and basketball player. Nina is also the captain of the Lesley University Lynx Cheer team. Her favorite teams are the Patriots and Celtics and wherever Aaron Rodgers and Kelly Olynk are playing!
Image Source: AP