“Holy Cow, James Harden” – In an article that has already created some buzz in the forums, Zach Lowe gets some data that shows just how dangerous the Beard is on drives to the basket:
Back to Harden: Houston is scoring 1.51 points per possession on trips in which he drives at any time in the shot clock. That is easily the highest mark among all players in the 15-team database with more than a token number of drives. It is a mammoth number; keep in mind, teams average just about one point per possession overall. Harden has drawn a foul on one-third of his drives, which is among the highest numbers in the data set, and sort of amazing when you think about it.
Also, it points out that Jeremy Lin generates as many points on drives as Tony Parker.
Dunkface – Last night, Jeremy Lin posted the best highlight of his career so far that hasn’t involved either a blue tongue or winning.
Tradewatch – ESPN insider listed young players likely to get traded by the deadline. Two of them, Jeremy Lamb and Terrence Jones, were drafted by the Rockets this year. Here’s the scoop on Jones:
Jones passed up a sure shot at the NBA lottery in 2011 and returned to Kentucky for his sophomore season. It proved to be a wise move in some regards — UK blitzed the field on its way to the 2012 NCAA national championship — but it cost him in terms of his draft stock. He slipped all the way to Houston at pick No. 18 last summer, and the combo forward has yet to work his way into the Rockets’ rotation. He did make the D-League’s All-Star team, though, averaging 18.8 points and 9.4 rebounds in 15 games with the Tulsa 66ers, and his upside remains high.
It’s no secret that Houston would like to upgrade at the 4 spot, and including Jones in a package for Atlanta’s Josh Smith is one scenario that would make a lot of sense.
The Non-Rockets Non-Rivalry – This Daily Dime preview of the Lakers-Heat game from Sunday explored the fascinating dynamic of the LeBron/Kobe rivalry, which has never come to a head in a playoff game. You kind of get the feeling that even though both men have to respect the other’s game, they don’t like each other that much. Here’s a snippet:
Perhaps that’s the destiny of it. After all, they don’t seem to really even like talking about each other.
“I don’t know if I want to comment on the Lakers saga again,” James said. “Last time I made a comment [comparing the Lakers struggles to the Heat’s in 2010] Kobe asked if I wanted a cookie. So I’m going to leave that alone. I like cookies, by the way.”
Demoted – The Dream Shake speculates on the significance of Greg Smith’s bump down to the D-League.
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