Welcome to another edition of NBA RoundTable. The season is in full swing and there are more winless teams than their are undefeated teams. This week on the slate is Will Westbrook average a triple double this year, Which team is off to the most surprising start, and so much more on NBA RoundTable.
Here are the questions for the week:
Russell Westbrook has been a man on a mission through the first couple of weeks. Will he average a triple double this year?
Todd: I don’t think he will. He is playing pretty impressive right now but i don’t think he can possibly keep up this pace through an 82 game season. He is logging a lot of minutes and he has to play so hard while he is on the floor that I think if he can’t get some help that by mid season he is going to wear down.
Steve: It is very possible, I mean I would not bet that he will, but I would not be surprised if he comes very close to it. Westbrook has to play lights out basketball to keep his team in contention. He knows that he is THE guy in the Thunder organization. He has something to prove, and will be Kobe-esq taking a lot of shots, fighting for the boards, and doing whatever he can to lead his team to the playoffs.
Chad: I will say he will give a valiant effort to get to that level and get his team to the playoffs but I do anticipate him coming up short of averaging a triple-double for the whole season.
Dan: While I think Westbrook will have a great season and most likely win MVP at this rate, I don’t think he’ll average a triple-double. I do think that he’ll come close and average double digits in both points and assists, but I think he’ll end up falling short in rebounds. It’s not an easy thing to do every night especially for a point guard. Assists and points are his forte though and those are easy to him.
Which team is off to the most surprising start good or bad?
Todd: I have to go with the Oklahoma City Thunder. Starting out 4-1 after losing arguably the second best player in the world is pretty impressive.
Steve: I think the Clippers getting off to a great start has surprised me the most. The biggest win coming at San Antonio in a complete route. While the Spurs made a statement on the Warriors home floor. The Clippers have come out and said that maybe they are the team to beat in the Western Conference.
Chad: I will say the Charlotte Hornets starting 5-1 and the Lakers being over .500 as of 11/8/16 as surprising starts for the year.
Dan: I think the two surprising teams this season are the Clippers in a good way and the Pelicans in a bad way. Anthony Davis has gone off this season but they’ve yet to win a game. I didn’t think the rest of the team was that bad but apparently they are. Injuries can’t be used as an excuse to last season for the Pelicans. They’re showing they’re just as bad when healthier. The Clippers are doing a lot of good things this year, have the second best record in the NBA only behind the 6-0 Cavs, Griffin and Chris Paul are really showing they want a big time contract come this off-season.
San Antonio has already lost their first home game of the season. (as of 4Nov16) Last year they won 38 in a row at home before their first loss. Is this a sign of how much better the NBA is this year?
Todd: Yes but at the same time I think the Spurs had an off game. It surprised me that they lost a home game so early in the season.
Steve: As stated in the last question, the Spurs ran into a very very good Los Angeles Clippers team. You have to think, that the Spurs probably overachieved a little bit last year when they nearly ran the table at home, and no one thought that they were going to have the same type of success, though I still think they will have a great home and overall record at the end of the season.
Chad: The Spurs will still be good they just ran into a better Clipper team on that night I would still put them down for more than 35 home wins.
Dan: Yes and no. No because the Spurs aren’t the same team as they were last year with the obvious omission being future Hall of Famer Tim Duncan. The other reason for no is because every team is different and every streak has to end at some point. They have gone all of last season with only losing 1 game at home. They could still repeat their same 40-1 home record this season as this game is their only loss, or it does show that the NBA has improved somewhat. I do think, overall, the NBA is getting better. But, this is also a different Spurs’ team and every streak has to end at some point. I don’t think Spurs’ fans have any reason to worry about this one home loss.
The Warriors have lost 2 games this year. (as of 4Nov16) Both games were lost by 20 plus points. What is their biggest problem?
Todd: This team has so many problems that it is not funny. No to take anything from the Lakers but they never should have beat the Warriors last week let alone beat them by 20. I think their biggest problem is their bench production. The Lakers bench outscored them by 30 in the game. I think unless their big 4 play 40 plus minutes this year, the Warriors will struggle this year. I have said it before that their bench is not as good as it was last year. The announcer during the game was trying to make all kinds of excuses for them like they were just coming off a back to back with OKC and they were a little tired. Well if i remember right Curry and Green Didn’t even play in the 4th quarter and Durant only Played about 5 minutes in the 4th during the OKC game. The Warriors are not as good and after watching their loss against the Lakers I wouldn’t be surprised if they were the 4th seed this year. Plus if they can’t make their 3 point shots any one but the 76ers can beat them.
Steve: They have no defense. They can absolutely put up 115 plus points a game, but when the offense has an off night, like they did on the road against the Lakers. Any team is going to be able to beat them because they lack a defensive presence. If the offense is on they are going to win the game, but as I said at the start of the season, they may score and average 115 points a game, but they are going to give up well over 100 on defense.
Chad: They cannot stop anybody from the scoring against their offense has to be on every night because they will have to win game 120-115 every night to be a force in the league.
Dan: I honestly think it’s just about them playing together. They need to work on chemistry and making the whole team flow and doing that consistently. They easily beat the Thunder to give them their first loss on the season and then the next night they go out against the Lakers and lose by 20. It doesn’t make too sense as to why their consistency is so bad this season with an addition of Kevin Durant, but I think they really need to get used to each other and they’ll be good.
The Cavaliers are the only undefeated team left on this young season. (as of 4Nov16) When will they lose their first game?
Todd: They are in the East for God sake. Wait until they play some good teams in the West like San Antonio or the Clippers. I think the West will dominate again this year and have a 50 win team miss the playoffs. There are only 3 or 4 really good teams in the East.
Steve: There first loss will come to the Indiana Pacers on November 16th. The Pacers are a good solid team, and playing the defending NBA Champions at home. The Pacers are going to come to play.
Chad: I’m going to agree with my fellow panel member Steve and go with the @ the Pacers on Nov. 16. However the next best chance I see would be Dec. 2 in Chicago.
Dan: On November 15 against the Toronto Raptors. They played them close their last match-up in the second game of the season where Cleveland won 94-91. With the one-point victory over the 76ers, it’s showing that they’re starting to falter and the game will come soon. I think Toronto is the closest team to the Cavaliers talent wise in the East. They lost at home, they’re coming to Cleveland with an extra target — give the Cavs their first loss and redeem their loss at home. Three more games with a victory for Cleveland. Then their loss.
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