Pretty eventul night last night in the NBA, including the NBA's YouTube page hitting the 1 billion views mark. The Following are random, quick thoughts about the NBA, based on the games from December 10, 2012.
Detroit Pistons @ Philadelphia 76ers: Any real NBA fan knew that the day would have to come when the Sixers would be forced to trade Andre Iguodala, but I myself was shocked to see him be traded this past offseason. I expected it to be during this season, but the Sixers might have done themselves a favor by jumping the gun on that particular transaction.
They sit comfortably at 12-9, but even better--seeing Jrue Holiday and Evan Turner benefit from the trade to solidify Philly's backcourt has been the real treat. Holiday has seen his scoring and playmaking production go up this season while Turner went from being a near bust after his second season, to finally finding his groove and no longer having to scavenge for minutes--this year, he's getting all the minutes he can handle and finding new-found liberties to handle and being creative with the ball. The results has seen Turner scoring more, rebounding more, getting more assists, and being more comfortable to shoot from beyond the arc (45.9% from 3-point range as opposed to never topping 32% in his first two seasons).
Golden State Warriors @ Charlotte Bobcats: The Warriors are 14-7 so far this season. They are 5th in the league in Rebound Differential, 11th in scoring, and are tied for third in Turnover Differential. Not bad for a team that has had a reputation for being a careless team with the ball, who are more interested in running up and down the court, and only focus is to put up as many shots and points in the shortest amount of time. Clearly, head coach Mark Jackson is finally molding this team into his vision. This is also a team that lost fan favorite and scoring machine, Monta Ellis. Many pundits thought that the move would put a lot of pressure on young and seemingly brittle Stephen Curry. All Curry has done is average 20.1 PPG, 4 RPG, 6.5 APG, and shooting 43.3% from beyond the arc. And now that he doesn't have to share with Ellis, Curry has established himself as one of the more exciting players in the NBA as well.
Atlanta Hawks @ Miami Heat: Hawks are now 0-2 against the Heat this season. However, this does not take away from the fact that the Hawks are having a good season as cornerstone players like Josh Smith, Al Horford, and Jeff Teague are carrying this team despite having seen Joe Johnson get traded to Brooklyn this past offseason. Smith, who demanded a trade back in the spring of this year, is now being rumored to be working with the Hawks on a new contract extension and in a recent nationally televised game on ESPN, there was a lot of on-air discussion about bringing in Dwight Howard to complement the trio of Teague, Horford, and J-Smoove.
Sacramento Kings @ Dallas Mavericks: What can I say, it's the Kings being the Kings posting 19 turnovers in this game. Meanwhile for the Mavs, not only is it good to see O.J. Mayo rise up from reaching quasi-draft-bust levels, but he's been a prolific scorer (20.8 PPG), and seeing an increase in field goal, 3-point percentage, and APG.
For more NBA, read our review of the top 40 players coming into the 2012 season.