By: Adam Pasternak
NBA Chatter is SportsNak’s weekly NBA feature, discussing the past week’s hottest topics in the association. Look for new editions every Sunday/Monday to get your basketball fix!
This week has been an exciting one in the world of basketball, with lots to talk about. Today, we narrow it down to the three things that excited me most this week. We saw the Golden State Warriors beat a deep Clippers team to stay undefeated, Brandon Knight emerging for the Suns and getting his first triple-double, and Corey Joseph working wonders off the bench for the Raptors.
The Warriors Can’t Stop Winning:
It’s starting to get annoying how often the Warriors have been mentioned in essentially every sports media outlet since last season. It just seems like every time I write about the NBA, they are naturally being mentioned. They just can’t lose and it’s getting out of control! They are still undefeated, at 14-0, and they’ve made it look easy. This week they probably had their biggest test in the star-studded L.A Clippers, but made them look like any other team. Blake Griffin, as much as he hates them, admitted that the Warriors are a better team. Everything they do just looks so smooth and fluid, and fun! They are always laughing, smirking, handshaking or doing whatever Andre Iguodala did the other night after setting up Draymond Green for an easy layup. Even without their coach and leader, Steve Kerr, the Warriors are doing things that we haven’t seen since Jordan and his Bulls in the 1980’s. Steph is putting up numbers that are similar, and in some areas, better than Michael Jordan to start a season. He is making a case for the MVP award yet again, and if he keeps this up, there is no doubt he will win it again. I really do think the Warriors can break records this year. I honestly don’t see them losing a home game, and very few other games beyond that. They will continue to be an exciting team to watch, but also keep in mind that Harrison Barnes is without a contract extension for next season. It will be interesting to see what develops there.
Brandon Knight’s Emergence Has us Wondering if He and Bledsoe Can Co-Exist:
In the first half of last season with the Bucks, Brandon Knight was playing like a perennial all-star point guard. He was averaging over 20 points per game, was getting assists and steals and was shooting the three very well. He was one of the final cuts from the Eastern Conference’s All-Star team and very soon after was shockingly traded to the Suns in a strange three-team deal. The Bucks opted to go for Michael Carter-Williams over the impressive Knight, which really didn’t improve or worsen them in the end. Now, Knight is on a very exciting Suns team. He shares the backcourt with the athletic Eric Bledsoe and the two have combined to be a fun duo to watch. Recently, Knight has gotten back to playing how he did before the all-star break last year. This week, he recorded his first triple-double, notching 30 points, 15 assists, and 10 rebounds and then a few games later he dropped 38, 6, and 11. It has taken him a while but he’s finally improving and playing like everyone thought he would coming out of college and high school. The Suns have had a two point-guard backcourt the last few years and in my opinion, hasn’t really worked all that well. Just look at the results: Dragic left because he and Bledsoe could not play together and the team hasn’t really improved after things looked bright during Coach Hornacek’s first season. Now, I have to wonder if Bledose and Knight can co-exist together. They are both point guards and you have to think that they both want to run their own teams eventually. With Knight’s emergence so far this season, things could get interesting down the road in the desert.
“Win a Ring and Bring it Home Like I’m Cory Joe…”:
The Raptors might be going through a rough patch right now, but the hometown-kid, Cory Joseph, is showing Raps fans why Masai Ujiri was smart to go all out and sign him this past summer. Yeah, the money might be a little high for what he’s done so far in the NBA, but in five years people will see it was well worth it. In fact, we are already seeing it now. He’s averaging 9.8 points per game and 3.3 assists per game off the bench for the Raps, but this week he has taken his play up a notch. He looks more comfortable now and this week he had games with 17, 13 and 11 points off the bench. The latter being a much needed boost to help Toronto finish off the Los Angeles Lakers. His toughness on the defensive end of the court is what the Raptors didn’t get in Lou Williams last season. Joseph is also very smart and is great with the ball. He learned from the best in San Antonio and he’s bringing it with him north of the border. If he keeps this up, he could be the starting point-guard in Toronto in the near future (when Lowry’s deal runs out after next season). It’s great to see him playing well right off the bat and not needing too long of a transition period. Before the season started, I was honestly not sure what to expect. I thought the Raptors may have overpaid, but now I think the deal will look like a steal when it is all said and done. Expect big things for “Cory Joe” in the future for the Raptors and Canadian basketball.
That wraps things up for this weeks NBA Chatter. Thanks for reading and be sure to comment your thoughts below and follow us on Facebook and Twitter!