We at Bulls by the Horns realize that you’re busy and don’t have the time to go searching through website after website for some interesting, NBA related reads during this holiday weekend. So, we gathered the articles we’ve found interesting and put them together in one place for you to read while ignoring your family or traveling home after Thanksgiving.
Derrick Rose’s injury has prompted a lot of people to do their best impression of Gar Forman and attempt to figure out what to do with the Bulls lineup. Here at Bulls by the Horns, we took a look at it with a 5-on-5 post as well as a revisited discussion in a Throwback Thursday post. Elsewhere, Amin Elhassan of ESPN took a look at some of the possible options (Insider Only) the Bulls have in attempting to patch up their roster without Rose. In this discussion with Henry Abbott, Elhassan breaks down some of the options he proposed as well as what it might take to get those options into Chicago.
The Bulls aren’t the only team attempting to figure out the rest of the season. Tom Ziller broke down why the Brooklyn Nets have struggled so much thus far this season. As he talked about the spilled cup fiasco and the benching of the team’s starters at halftime on Friday night, he came to the realization that Jason Kidd isn’t really coaching, but instead just trying some coaching “tricks” to inspire his team. The Nets have been a sorry bunch thus far this season and there doesn’t seem to be much hope in sight.
After Kobe Bryant signed his 2 year, $48 million extension on Monday, he decided to try some tricks of his own with the media and defended his choice to remain the highest paid player in the league. Bryant railed against the NBA’s current collective bargaining agreement and told anyone who would listen that there is no reason for him to accept less money “to help billionaire owners”. In reality, Bryant is probably right. With max contracts, there is a limit to what the best of the best can make. If the sport was “capless” like Major League Baseball, the market would dictate that players like Bryant and Lebron James would make significantly more money and would likely get paid much closer to their actual value to the franchise.
While Bryant defended his value, the Orlando Magic have started trying to figure out Nikola Vucevic’s worth. Vucevic is in the third year of a four year contract with the Magic and the Magic can offer him a contract extension anytime after the end of this season and October 31, 2014. Brian Schmitz of the Orlando Sentinel dissected the problems the Magic will face as they attempt to figure out how to handle the situation.
While the Magic might not know Vucevic’s worth, the Pacers know exactly how lucky they were to acquire Luis Scola this offseason. Michael Pointer of the Indianapolis Star broke down Scola’s transition to a bench role in Indianapolis and just how well he has adjusted. Scola has done a great job off the bench this season for the Pacers and his addition strengthens a bench that was the Pacers only weakness last season. The Pacers are a truly scary team this season and should be able to give the Heat all they can handle this postseason.
The Mavericks have reaped the benefits of an offseason acquisition as well, but one that was not nearly as popular. Though a lot of people didn’t love the move during the offseason, Monta Ellis has been a revelation in Dallas and Vytis Lasaitis at HoopChalk took a look at why Ellis has been so successful. Lasaitis masterfully broke down some game film and dove into the stats to see how Ellis has managed to become a “pick and roll genius”. Ellis has had a profound effect on Dirk Nowitzki and helped the Mavericks to a surprisingly good start to this season.
Another surprising development this season has been the effectiveness of Michael Beasley in Miami. Beasley has struggled to realize his full potential with a multitude of NBA teams, but he has really played well in Miami and Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald took a look at why Beasley could be a key to the Heat’s attempt to win their third straight NBA title. Beasley’s effectiveness has allowed the Big Three in Miami to play fewer minutes and remain fresher thus far this season. This could be a huge development as many critics have said a third straight championship might not be possible for the Heat because of the insane amount of minutes they’ve played in the last three seasons.
Speaking of a player that didn’t quite reach his full potential, the Minnesota Timberwolves traded away the second pick of the 2011 NBA Draft Derrick Williams to the Sacramento Kings for Luc Richard Mbah a Moute. Zach Harper delved a little bit deeper and broke down the trade. Williams is still full of potential and may capitalize on a chance to play more in Sacramento, but the Wolves are trying to make a playoff push this season and needed a perimeter defender. Mbah a Moute should really help out in the Western Conference as the Wolves will have to try to contain scorers like Kevin Durant and James Harden come playoff time.
While you were microwaving Thanksgiving leftovers last night, the Thunder pulled out a last second victory against the Golden State Warriors on a game winner from Russell Westbrook with .1 seconds left on the clock. Westbrook’s shot came after he soared to keep a rebound alive and Seerat Sohi at Hardwood Paroxysm detailed why that rebound perfectly signified the positional revolution occurring in the NBA right now. Point guards are no longer just short distributors that can shoot well. They are now some of the best athletes on the floor and defy what most originally thought the position could be.
Remember…reading is FUNdamental.