Today’s Top NBA Stories

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Klay Thompson playing at the star-like level many saw for him (from Marcus Thompson II, insidebayarea.com):

” Three games into the season, no one is thinking about how the Warriors missed out on Kevin Love. The sentiment that the Warriors overpaid at four years, about $70 million, has already been silenced.

That’s how good Klay Thompson is, and how good he can be.
But this isn’t a revelation as much as it is the fulfillment of a prophecy. Many other NBA executives
and experts saw this coming. That includes legend Jerry West, the Warriors consultant who
advocated the drafting of Thompson. That includes coach Steve Kerr, the former championship
player and general manager, who lobbied with West to keep Thompson instead of trading him for
Love.
Warriors management knew all along what the rest of the league did: Thompson was bound to be
an NBA star. He has all the tools. He’s got the supporting cast around him. And, now, he’s getting
mature enough to put it all together.

Read it here: http://www.insidebayarea.com/marcus-thompson/ci_26865276/thompson-golden-state-warriors-klay-thompson-playing-at

 

Klay Thompson’s Early Season Offensive Improvement (from Seth Partnow, Bball Breakdown):

Read and view it here: http://bballbreakdown.com/2014/11/04/by-the-numbers-klay-thompsons-early-season-offensive-improvement/

 

How Mavericks’ diverse attack is helping Chandler Parsons heat up as a scorer (from Eddie Sefko, dallasnews.com):

“I’m just in a good rhythm,” he said. “I’m trying not to force anything. And I’m getting more comfortable playing with them. With our personnel, it’s great. You’ve got Tyson [Chandler], and he’s always a target at the rim.

“There are always three or four shooters on the floor capable of knocking down 3s. It’s a fun way to play. Not many teams are going to be able to control what we do on the offensive end.”

What fans have seen in the quick glimpse that is a marathon NBA season is that Parsons appears to be getting a lot of good opportunities offensively. Dirk Nowitzki still commands attention. Jameer Nelson stations himself on the perimeter and can’t be left. Monta Ellis is always a threat anywhere he’s at on the court. And Chandler is lethal with his rolls to the basket for lob passes.

It adds up to a recipe for Parsons to get equal opportunities at the 3-point arc and on slashes to the basket. He’s already had a handful of one-hand throwdown dunks, and his long ball has perked up during the winning streak.

“They can do so much offensively, there’s way less help because guys don’t want to leave certain guys, and it allows me to create more for myself and get to the basket,” Parsons said.”

Read it here: http://www.dallasnews.com/sports/dallas-mavericks/headlines/20141104-sefko-how-mavericks-diverse-attack-is-helping-chandler-parsons-heat-up-as-a-scorer.ece

LeBron opts for new leadership style (from Brian Windhorst, ESPN):

” This is a conscious decision on how he plans to operate in a passive-aggressive mission to yank some teammates toward his way of thinking. Let some of them fail at their way so they will be open to new ideas, is what it looks and sounds like.

“Everyone wants to win, I would hope,” James said. “Would you rather play selfish basketball and lose, or play unselfish basketball and sacrifice and win? So you pick it.”

Read it here: http://espn.go.com/nba/story/_/id/11824708/lebron-james-opts-new-leadership-style-young-cleveland-cavaliers

 

Chicago Bulls’ Soft November Schedule Helps Set Up Derrick Rose Maintenance Plan (from Sean Highkin, Bleacher report):

” “When you’re going to the hole, you’ve really got to have balance,” Rose said after shootaround on Tuesday. “And one way to have balance is through your ankles. So when your ankles are sore, you’re not going to have balance and you end up hurting something else. I’m just trying to be smart.”

“I’m just looking for that burst and that speed,” Rose said. “If I can get to a spot, I’ll play. But if not, if I’m not 100 percent, if I can’t play the way I normally play, there’s no point in me being out there right now.”

If everything goes according to plan, Rose will be playing like his old self come playoff time. But getting there involves a lot of planning and patience, and there’s no better time to put that to the test than now.”

Read it here: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/2256181-chicago-bulls-soft-november-schedule-helps-set-up-derrick-rose-maintenance-plan

Wizards establish blueprint to stop Knicks (from Ian Begley, ESPNNewYork):

” It’s early, but there might already be a blueprint out there for how to slow down the New York Knicks’ new offense: pressure the ball.

The Washington Wizards employed the strategy to perfection on Tuesday night. Their ball pressure helped hold the Knicks to 37 percent shooting in a 98-83 win.

“Tonight, their pressure caused us some problems,” Knicks coach Derek Fisher said after his team fell to 2-2. “I think it got frustrating for all of our guys out there, not to be able to execute the things that we’re capable of doing.”

The Knicks’ offense is predicated on well-timed cuts, ball movement and proper spacing. Washington used pressure defense on the perimeter and strong denials in the passing lanes to disrupt things on Tuesday.

The Wizards’ game plan was eerily similar to the strategy the Chicago Bulls used in their blowout of the Knicks on opening night.”

Read it here: http://espn.go.com/blog/new-york/knicks/post/_/id/59585/wizards-establish-blueprint-to-stop-bockers

And from Brett Pollakoff, NBC Sportshttp://probasketballtalk.nbcsports.com/2014/11/05/knicks-struggling-to-deal-with-perimeter-pressure-in-early-days-of-learing-the-triangle-offense/

The Wolves’ Dilemma with the D-League (from ZacharyBD, Canishoopus):

” It appears Flip Saunders won’t be quick to send players to the D-League this season. Here’s why.”

Read it here: http://www.canishoopus.com/2014/11/5/7156973/Timberwolves-NBA-dleague-dilemma-glenn-robinson-shabazz-muhammad-zach-lavine

The Houston Rockets are Shooting Threes at an Absurd Pace (from Jacob Rosen, nyloncalculus.com):

” The Rockets, those poor sad Rockets that missed out on a superstar and lost three key rotation players, are currently the NBA’s best team. It’s very, very early, but they’re not just beating opponents, they’re destroying them. And they’re doing it in uber-Morey fashion.

Thus far, they’re taking an earth-shattering number of three pointers. In five games, 10 percent more of their field goal attempts are occurring beyond the arc. And they already led the league in this category last season!”

Read it here: http://nyloncalculus.com/2014/11/05/houston-rockets-shooting-threes-early-pace/

–  Top 5 HORNS Plays Of The Week Episode 1 (from Coach Nick, BBall Breakdown):

” Coach Nick broke down the best examples of NBA teams running HORNS. Check out how the Sixers, Suns, Trail Blazers, Jazz, and Clippers all throw wrinkles at the defense to make it difficult to stop.”

Watch it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fqJSjudpFP0&feature=youtu.be

Garrett Temple explains how he’s worked to improve his jump shot (from Mike Prada, bulletsforever.com):

” The Wizards’ shooting guard is off to a hot start from downtown after struggling earlier in his career. He talks to Bullets Forever about how he’s worked to improve his jumper.”

Read the Q & A here: http://www.bulletsforever.com/2014/11/4/7155121/garrett-temple-jump-shot-washington-wizards

Can Paul Pierce handle the truth? (from Michael Wallace, ESPN):

” The Wizards have been down this road before. Future Hall of Famers have passed through Washington late in their careers, but none have been able to translate it to postseason success. It didn’t work when Bernard King arrived in his early 30s during the late 1980s, or when Mitch Richmond showed up in his mid-30s during the late 1990s. Not even a twice-retired Michael Jordan could make much of an impact on the standings in the early 2000s.

How can Pierce?

“The difference is, we already have our anchors in Wall and Beal,” said Phil Chenier, a shooting guard on Washington’s 1978 NBA championship team and a local television analyst for the past three decades. “When Bernard came, he was our new identity. When Mitch came, we were still expecting him to be a 20-point scorer every night. And even Michael, even though he retired and came back again and again, he was still M.J., and that expectation to be M.J. was there.”

“Paul still has a lot to offer. But he’s not coming to save a team. He’s coming to supplement a team that was very close a year ago to the conference finals.”

Read it here:  http://abcnews.go.com/Sports/paul-pierce-handle-truth/story?id=26706350&singlePage=true

 

Can Pierce Turn Wizards Into a Contender? (from Alex Kennedy, Basketball Insdiers):

” Washington is a young squad that is extremely hungry after experiencing a little bit of success in last year’s postseason. Last year’s group managed to win 44 games, which was good for fifth place in the East. Washington defeated the Chicago Bulls in the first round of the playoffs, before being eliminated by the Indiana Pacers in six games.

Pierce has experienced just about everything a player can in the NBA, so he’s an amazing resource for these young Wizards. Pierce said that he’ll do his best to offer his help throughout the course of the season.

“I just try to keep everyone focused,” Pierce said. “I want them to understand what it’s going to take when you’re coming off of a loss and in a back-to-back situation. That’s what I’m going to give them all year long. If we’re going to try to take that next step from what the Wizards did a year ago, then it’s got to be mental. It’s got to be every night, consistency in practices and in games.”

Read it here: http://www.basketballinsiders.com/nba-pm-can-pierce-turn-wizards-into-a-contender/

 

Doc’s cure for shooting woes: Don’t let up (from Arash Markazi, ESPNLosAngeles):

” “It’s a make-or-miss league,” Clippers coach Doc Rivers said. “It always will be. We could go on a streak in the middle of the season and make half of them and look brilliant. I am never going to tell J.J. Redick to pass up a wide-open jump shot. That would be silly. And he missed a bunch of wide-open jump shots [Sunday]. Spencer Hawes missed a bunch of wide-open shots. Is it too many 3s? Probably. A lot of them are wide open. Should you tell them not to shoot them? I don’t think so.”

“I’m thinking if we played at a little faster pace, we’d get more to the basket,” Rivers said. “That would take some of those [3-pointers] away, but when you watch the film, which I have — I have them all taken and looked at every single one — they’re wide open. And they’re wide open for our guys that have to make them. Honestly, [Chris Douglas-Roberts], on a couple of his, probably should drive. Matt [Barnes], on a couple of his, probably could drive, but J.J.? Shoot the ball. All the other guys who have them? Shoot the ball.”

Read it here: http://espn.go.com/blog/los-angeles-clippers/post/_/id/6851/docs-cure-for-shooting-woes-dont-let-up

Early impressions: Is there hope for the Sacramento Kings? (from Matt Moore, CBS Sports):

” When is it OK to have hope? How soon is too soon to enjoy success? And if you have to start somewhere, why is starting anywhere seemingly less proof of basketball life than failing out of the gate. Welcome to life in the NBA when it comes to your 3-1 Sacramento Kings.

The Kings opened with a dismal loss to the Warriors and it seemed par for the course. A bad team whose offseason moves were panned (particularly the loss of Isaiah Thomas and the replacement thereof with Darren Collison) gets slammed against the locker by the division favorites, setting off yet another disappointing, if expectedly so, season.

And then a funny thing thing happened.

The Kings have rattled off three straight, yes, three whole games, but had this been an East Coast jaunt vs. the Sixers, Magic, and some banged up squad, it would be one thing. Instead, they knocked off the Blazers, then the Clippers, in Los Angeles. On Monday, they were stacked against the schedule: the dreaded back-to-back in the altitude of Denver vs. the Nuggets. That’s a schedule loss. I know it. You know it. The teams themselves know it. You lose those games.”

Read it here: http://www.cbssports.com/nba/eye-on-basketball/24783646/early-impressions-is-there-hope-for-the-sacramento-kings

 

Anthony Davis taking flight, lifting Pelicans in third season  (from Michael Lee, Washington Post):

” “I just go out there and play. What people expect of me? That’s on them,” Davis said, recently. “I don’t pay attention to all the stuff that they’re saying because that kind of messes with your head and you start getting complacent. That’s for the fans to read it and listen to it. My objective is to help this team win.””

Read it here: http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/sports/wp/2014/11/05/the-big-shot-anthony-davis-taking-flight-lifting-pelicans-in-third-season/

 

Deron Williams Played A Perfect Game, And Few Even Noticed (from Miles Wray, BBall Breakdown):

” When I watch Williams, it almost seems impossible that he would ever be the type of player to cause locker room strife. There is no direct correlation between on-court unselfishness and off-court behaviour, of course, yet Deron is playing with an unselfishness that makes any connection hard to fathom. Williams makes the game look easy; he plays with total court awareness, and he is always looking to get the ball in the hands of the open man. Sometimes he is that open man, and he does not hesitate to take those in-flow shots. But most of the time, when he is not that open man, Williams makes Brooklyn’s offense hum by smartly looking for the open man without forcing situations or demanding that he get his prerequisite number of shots.

On Monday night, the Nets dismantled the Oklahoma City Thunder, 116-85. The popular takeaway from the game is no doubt to be that a seriously injured Thunder squad simply did not have the bodies to keep up with a presumed playoff team like the Nets. This is a part of the story, to be sure. They could not keep up. But in the Nets, I also saw a veteran team working as a single and cohesive unit to find the open man, their individual personal statistics be damned.”

Read and view it here: http://bballbreakdown.com/2014/11/04/an-evening-with-deron/

 

A look at what the other top NBA rosters would look like with the Thunder’s current injury situation (from Anthony Slater, newsok.com):

Read it here: http://newsok.com/okc-thunder-a-look-at-what-the-other-top-nba-rosters-would-look-like-with-the-thunders-current-injury-situation/article/5363780

 

And for those with access to ESPN Insider:

Ariza, D driving Houston’s hot start (from Tom Haberstroh):

Read it here: http://insider.espn.go.com/nba/story/_/id/11825292/houston-rockets-better-chandler-parsons-nba-insider-daily

 

More player updates:

Brook Lopez: http://nypost.com/2014/11/04/a-closer-look-at-how-brook-lopezs-return-boosts-nets/

Jason Thompson: http://www.sacbee.com/sports/nba/sacramento-kings/kings-blog/article3566702.html   and      http://cowbellkingdom.com/a-closer-look-at-jason-thompsons-improved-defense/

Nikola Mirotic: http://www.csnchicago.com/bulls/nikola-mirotic-proving-his-worth-versatility-bulls-win

Marcus Morris: http://www.azcentral.com/story/sports/nba/suns/2014/11/04/notes-phoenix-suns-forward-marcus-morris-gets-defensive/18509303/

Joe Johnson: http://basketball.realgm.com/blog/235452/Joe-Johnson-Beyond-The-Contract

Jeff Green: http://www.celticsblog.com/2014/11/5/7159909/jeff-green-torched-mavs

Tim Hardaway, Jrhttp://espn.go.com/blog/new-york/knicks/post/_/id/59566/hardaway-cant-complain-about-minutes

K.J. McDaniels: http://www.libertyballers.com/the-liberty-beat/2014/11/5/7159801/k-j-mcdaniels-showcasing-incredible-defensive-potential

Nerlens Noel: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/2256376-nerlens-noels-defensive-flashes-show-making-of-bright-nba-future  and   http://www.philly.com/philly/blogs/pattisonave/Nerlens-Noel-showing-signs.html

Mike Scott: http://bballbreakdown.com/2014/11/03/ekpe-udoh-is-both-underrated-and-important/

Ekpe Udoh: http://bballbreakdown.com/2014/11/03/ekpe-udoh-is-both-underrated-and-important/

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