It’s Overreaction O’Clock: Very Early Takeaways on the N.B.A. Season


We are roughly 2 % of the approach via the N.B.A. season.

Which means it’s precisely the proper time to attract grand conclusions and assume that they are going to maintain till April. It’s the supreme second to get overly enthusiastic about anticipated lottery groups which might be weirdly undefeated and predict doom and gloom for championship contenders that appear like lottery groups.

This might be the final piece of the season through which I’ll write the phrases, “Hey, you know who looks like the best team in the league? The Minnesota Timberwolves.” But with that being stated: Hey, you realize who seems like the finest group in the league? The Minnesota Timberwolves.

Still, there are some developments growing which might be value retaining an eye fixed on now that we’re via the first two or three video games of the common season.

Goodness gracious. There seem like Pringles-size chips on Karl-Anthony Towns’s shoulders this season. On Friday night time in opposition to the Charlotte Hornets, he blew up for 37 factors, 15 rebounds and eight assists. In Wednesday’s season opener on the road against the Nets, Towns had a nearly identical 36 points and 14 rebounds. He almost matched the impact Kyrie Irving had on that game — I say almost because Irving had 50. Fifty!

The Nets have a lot of new faces and a whole new identity to work out. But Irving can’t shoulder this much of a load night in and night out. And just as with Boston, Irving is surrounded by a mixture of veterans and blue-chip prospects who are looking to grow their own roles. Are the Nets a finals team this year without the injured Kevin Durant? No. But the expectation is that they will progress from last year’s unexpected regular season success.

And if that identity doesn’t develop for the Nets, will Irving remain happy? Are we going to stop hearing how Brooklyn is home for him by February? We’ve seen this story unfold before. I’m just saying.

It’s bad television. They kill the momentum of games, and coaches don’t seem to understand best practices for using them.

But look, in the interest of entertainment, if you are going to keep the challenges, make the practice of calling for them more interesting. Have the coaches use an air horn or a trumpet. Give the coaches the option of shooting a free throw themselves in lieu of the challenge. If they hit the free throw, the call goes to the challenging team.

While we are at it, I will trade the coaches challenges for the return of the now-banned ninja-style headbands a bunch of players wore last season.

I am bullish on the Knicks. I remain so. They have the talent to get to 35 wins in a weak conference. I am also bullish on the young talent. R.J. Barrett has some serious poise on both ends of the floor. Allonzo Trier dropped 22 points off the bench against the Nets, helping spur a futile comeback effort. (Mitchell Robinson, on the other hand, made his season debut and only played 17 minutes because of foul trouble. What else is new?)



Source link Nytimes.com

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