Well congratulations NBA fans, we've officially finished our first week of the NBA season. One of the most legendary traditions is for NBA fan bases to panic after one week. Stay calm. I'm looking at you Sacramento Kings fans. Your team might be 0-5 but it's okay...we can get through this together.
There's a number of things that have gained our curiosity as we've watched the first week of the NBA season. Some of these might not be season-long "trends" but others might be. Let's take a look at some of the top storylines we are looking at after opening week.
THE PHOENIX SUNS ARE SHINING
- WARN THE LOCAL AUTHORITIES...MONTY WILLIAMS IS COOKING WITH GAS. I love everything I've seen from this young Phoenix Suns team so far. After 5 games, the Suns sit at 3-2 but they have played substantially better than their record shows. Phoenix opened everyone's eyes with a massive home win over Sacramento to start the year off but gained everyone's undivided attention with a shocking win over the Los Angeles Clippers in Phoenix as well. The Suns also lost a heartbreaker to Utah 96-95 but one thing is for sure...everyone is on the lookout for this Phoenix team. So what's different?
(image via ValleyOfTheSuns)
- Phoenix added an arsenal of misfit toys this offseason but there was some serious intrigue to a couple of additions on this roster. Aaron Baynes has been fantastic, especially with the suspension to former number one overall pick Deandre Ayton. Ricky Rubio has been exactly what this Suns team has needed...a veteran point guard that will do everything he can to put his teammates in position to succeed. Kelly Oubre has picked up right where he left off in the second half of last year's NBA season and has created a very impressive scoring punch next to Devin Booker. There's also some intriguing bench contribution from players such as Jevon Carter, who I still am furious at Memphis for giving up on so soon...and Frank Kaminsky who has given this team good minutes.
CLIPPER NATION SHOULD BE EXCITED
(image via clipsnation)
- It's still early, but the early performances from the Los Angeles Clippers have been very impressive. As many have stated on social media, the Clippers look exactly like what we thought they would. Overall great defense and ball movement have stood out early and often, as well as the play of last year's Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard. Key Veterans Patrick Beverley and Montrezl Harrell have continued their stellar play from last year's playoff run, and this team is firing on all cylinders. Despite a shocking loss in Phoenix on the road and a loss last night in Utah (with Kawhi resting), the Clippers have looked the part. An important note to remember...they still are waiting to get Paul George back. Prayers for the rest of the NBA.
TYLER HERRO LOOKS FANTASTIC
(image via hothothoops)
- Ever since Tyler Hero has entered the draft process he has impressed. He impressed teams in workouts. Then he impressed all of us with his play in Summer League. Then he impressed in Preseason and YOU GUESSED IT FOLKS...he's turning heads around the league with his play during the NBA season. Herro the other night even went on to score 19 points in the second quarter alone and has Miami Heat fans excited for the future development of their talented rookie. Herro was known to be an electric scorer from deep in college, but some were worried about his overall offensive versatility as an NBA prospect. Herro shut up a lot of critics this summer in Las Vegas, scoring in a variety of ways and that has carried over to the regular season with the lottery pick's confidence soaring. In 4 games so far, Herro is averaging 16.2 PTS, 6.2 REB, and 1.8 AST in 32.5 MPG while shooting 45.8% from the field.
RUSSELL LOOKS JUST FINE IN HOUSTON
(image via CBSSports)
- Personally, this was one of my favorite moves in last year's offseason and you can see it paying off immediately for the Houston Rockets. Russell Westbrook has flourished so far with this Rockets team and has reaped the benefits of playing with additional spacing and surrounded by shooters (finally). Westbrook has continued to attack the lanes with bad intentions, but now he's allowing his playmaking ability to truly take off, which was on display after Westbrook got downhill before kicking out to PJ Tucker in the corner for a massive three-pointer. In 4 games with the Rockets, Westbrook is averaging 22.5 PTS, 12.0 REB, 10.2 AST, and is shooting 48.5% from the field.
UTAH OFFENSE IS STILL DEVELOPING
- It had been reported on the world wide web that the Utah Jazz had one of the lowest ranking offenses in the NBA after the opening week of the NBA season. We are not worried at all. This is a common side effect with teams that have so many new pieces to the puzzle. What's more impressive about the fact stated previously...Utah is now 4-1 after an impressive home win against the Los Angeles Clippers last night (without Kawhi). So...Utah's offense is struggling but they are still 4-1? Ruh-roh NBA.
GOLDEN STATE IS IN TROUBLE
- Well, Golden State Warriors fans...welcome back to the dark ages. It's been a nightmare-ish start for Dub Nation...and last night, things got worse in a hurry. It's been reported that Warriors superstar Stephen Curry has suffered a broken hand and will be out for the foreseeable future.
(image via Kron4)
- It puts the Warriors organization in a tough situation. After a team that has experienced so much success in the last 5 seasons, the Warriors are about to take a DEEP dive. This team will now be without Curry and fellow splash brother Klay Thompson for the majority of the NBA season, and that engine you can hear starting up sounds very much like the engine of a tank. Welcome back to Lottery Watch Warriors fans...it's good to see you again.