Tag:Blake Griffin
Posted on: November 8, 2010 11:09 am

Turnovers a concern for John Wall and ROY chances

John Wall officially made his presence known after dropping 29 points, 13 assists and 9 steals during the Washington Wizards‘ season home opener.

The 20-year-old became the youngest player in 25 years to collect at least 25 points, 10 assists and 8 steals in the same game.

While credit is clearly due to the speedster that (according to ESPN’s SportsScience) can run faster while dribbling a basketball than Kevin Durant can run without a ball, turnovers have emerged as a point of concern.

In five games this season Wall has committed a total of 29 turnovers, averaging out to just under six turnovers per contest.

Amongst all starting PG’s who have averaged at least 30 MPG this season, Wall currently ranks second to worst in A/T ratio (Steve Nash being the worst thus far), dishing out just 1.65 assists per turnover.

Wall’s competition, Blake Griffin, has played nothing short of spectacular in seven games this year, posting 18.1 points per game and 11 boards on 50 percent shooting from the field.

Will turnovers put John Wall‘s chances of winning the Rookie of the Year award in jeopardy as the season drags on?

With Gilbert Arenas back in action Wall should see a steady decline in overall numbers, with the assumption that his turnovers will decrease as well.

But how low can they possibly go?

During Wall’s one season at Kentucky, he managed to dish out 6.5 assists per contest while turning the ball over four times per game (his assist-to-turnover ratio was 1.62 for the year).

Wall’s advantageous speed enables him to blow by his opponents for quick finishes at the rim, but it seems like it could also be playing a factor in his turnover rate issue.

The season is still very young and Wall could certainly learn to fix his biggest weakness. His chances of winning the ROY award will go to the wire with Blake Griffin this year.

How do you feel about this topic?

For more of Brandon's content be sure to check out NBAPrimetime.com and follow him on twitter @_nbaprimetime
Posted on: October 28, 2010 12:28 pm

NBA 2010-11 Season: What we've learned so far

Last night I experienced an overwhelming dose of NBA League Pass for the first time in months, and let me be honest, there were no complaints on my end.

After a mere 48 hours of professional basketball played, I’ve already began to notice fans overreacting, and making stupid predictions based on what they’ve seed thus far.

With the season officially underway, NBAPrimetime’sBrandon Ribak presents questions and gives his first impressions on them for the 2010 season.

Were the Miami Heat over hyped entering the season?

Over hyped isn’t even the word to explain for all the attention that the Heat received once LeBron made his way to South Beach.

During Miami’s first regular season game the team seemed discombobulated at best.

But can you blame them?

Dwyane Wade’s preseason injury put the big three’s “practice time” to build chemistry in limbo. Without a gist of chemistry the team was destined for a loss, especially to arguably the best defensive team in the entire NBA.

The Heat definitely have their work set out for them, but by mid-season we should be seeing a completely new Miami team.

People like NBA commentator Jeff Van Gundy are the ones who set the bar ridiculously high for the Heat. Not once did you see Wade, LeBron, or Bosh come out and state that Miami would break Chicago’s historic 72 win record or that they would end the year with the best record in the league.

The Heat were not over hyped entering the season. They were undoubtedly discussed about more than any other team this offseason, but why wouldn’t they be?

Expect a 60-65 win season out of the Miami Heat and a competitive battle (against Boston) in the Eastern Conference Finals.

Will Blake Griffin give John Wall serious competition for the Rookie of the Year Award?

If you happened to miss Blake Griffin’s debut on Wednesday night then that’s unfortunate.

The 6’10″ power-forward quickly made up for lost time within minutes of the first quarter, one handing an alley-oop, slamming down an offensive put-back, and ultimately ending the game with an obnoxious stat-line of 20 points, 14 rebounds (9 offensive), 4 assists, and one steal.

Many seem to forget just how good Griffin was in college and quite honestly, just how great he can become in the NBA.

With John Wall being the general consensus pick for the Rookie of the Year Award, I see Griffin giving him a major run for his money, just as long as he can remain healthy.

By seasons end, if all goes well, Blake Griffin will take him the trophy with averages of around 14-16PPG and 10-12 RPG, while providing fans with some of the craziest dunks ever seen in the NBA.

Is Kevin Durant on his way to his first Most Valuable Player trophy?

Kevin Durant was runner up to LeBron James for the MVP trophy last season when he dropped career-highs in points (30.1 per contest) and rebounds (7.6 per game).

With LeBron now paired up with Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh in Miami, it will obviously be more difficult for James to post his career averages on a nightly basis.

Having said that, the 22 year old phenom has yet to reach his peak (scary, I know). With the same team surrounding him as last season, KD will get the opportunity to capture his second straight scoring title, and his first ever MVP trophy.

So is Durant on his way to his first MVP trophy?

Without a doubt.

For more of Brandon's content be sure to check out NBAPrimetime.com and follow him on twitter @_nbaprimetime
Posted on: October 5, 2010 12:24 pm
Edited on: October 5, 2010 12:27 pm

NBA 2010 Western Conference Preseason Rankings

The Western Conference has been the most dominate conference in the NBA for years, but after an off-season filled with transactions, that power has now shifted to the East.

Will the West, and by West I mean the Los Angeles Lakers, be able to make a three-peat this season?

Let’s cut to the chase to find out.

NBA Primetime’s Western Conference Preseason Rankings

1. Los Angeles Lakers- Last season record (57-25)

The back-to-back defending champs just so happened to improve on its only weakness this off-season, the bench. Steve Blake and Matt Barnes should provide the Lakers with plenty of spark off of the bench, keeping LA on top of the West until proven otherwise.

2. Oklahoma City Thunder- Last season record (50-32)

Kevin Durant has officially entered super-stardom in the NBA, but the rest of Oklahoma City’s roster must step up if they want any chance at rising to the one seed in the West. Regardless, the Thunder have a young core with massive upside (which is why they rank where they currently do).

3. Dallas Mavericks- Last season record (55-27)

Dallas is stacked with seven-footers, high-profiled players, and a franchise player who signed a contract extension this offseason. The Mavericks always enter every season as one of the elite teams in the West, but a strong playoff run is never definite.

4. San Antonio Spurs- Last season record (50-32)

The championship core is still intact, although a serious decline is approaching for Tim Duncan. The Spurs have assembled a solid group of youngsters (Hill, Blair, Splitter) over the years and it seems like their opportunity to step up is looming.

5. Denver Nuggets- Last season record (53-29)

With Carmelo Anthony still apart of the Nuggets roster (at least until the trade deadline), Denver will remain as a top competitor in the West. George Karl is back, Al Harrington will fill in for Kenyon Martin, and if everything goes well, the Nuggets should clinch another 50-win season.

6. Portland Trail Blazers- Last season record (50-32)

Both Brandon Roy and LaMarcus Aldridge are tippy-toeing into their prime and if 22-year-oldGreg Oden can manage to stay healthy for an entire season (unlikely), the Blazers have the weapons (Wesley Matthews, Marcus Camby, Andre Miller) to make a run for the title.

7. Utah Jazz- Last season record (53-29)

Al Jefferson was a great addition to the team, especially after Carlos Boozer decided to sign with the Bulls. The Jazz have talent, but it seems like its never enough to pass the second-round hump with Los Angeles in the way.

8. Phoenix Suns- Last season record (54-28)

Phoenix will in no way shape or form repeat last seasons performance; but as long as Steve Nash is on the court dishing out the rock the Suns should be in contention for a playoff spot.

9. Houston Rockets- Last season record (42-40)

Yao will return to the court this season but plenty of questions surround the 7’6″ center. With Aaron Brooks leading the way for Houston and Kevin Martin easing into his role the Rockets will fight for a playoff seed, just like Phoenix.

10. New Orleans Hornets- Last season record (37-45)

Trevor Ariza is now apart of the team, Marcus Thornton should continue to improve, and Emeka Okafor could be in for a breakout season. Is a playoff seed a possibility for Chris Paul and the New Orleans Hornets?

11. Memphis Grizzlies- Last season record (40-42)

Memphis lacks depth since the majority of the team is built up of inexperienced young guns (only five players on the team are above the age of 28). Their starting five is solid with potential to get better, but a playoff appearance is against the odds.

12. Los Angeles Clippers- Last season record (29-53)

Good news is Blake Griffin will be on the court this season. Bad news is head-coach Vinny Del Negro criticized Baron Davis for reporting to training camp out of shape (and already has a few nagging injuries). The Clippers will need B-Diddy at his all-time best if they want to see even a small chance at reaching the postseason.

13. Golden State Warriors- Last season record (26-56)

New ownership + New head coach = better record this season? David Lee will quickly make his presence as one of the best big men in the Western Conference and the Stephen Curry and Monta Ellis duo should uplift Golden State to 30+ wins this season.

14. Sacramento Kings- Last season record (25-57)

Sacramento is another very young squad that has a chance to improve upon last seasons performance. They drafted a few solid big men and acquired seven-footer Samuel Dalembert this offseason. In addition, franchise player Tyreke Evans should be able to elevate his overall game to the next level.

15. Minnesota Timberwolves- Last season record (15-67)

Michael Beasley stated the the Timberwolves are the team to beat this season. After losing Al Jefferson (the teams best player) and failing to win more than 30 games in a season since the 06′-07′ season, it’s very tough for many to believe Beasley. Maybe next year (but probably not).

For more of Brandon’s content be sure to check out NBAPrimetime.com and follow him on twitter @_nbaprimetime

Posted on: September 23, 2010 12:33 pm

Eastern Conference Q & A's: J-Wall to Win ROY?

The 2010-11′ NBA season is just 33 days, 7 hours, and 57 minutes away, but who’s counting?

With the season approaching faster then it took LeBron to make his “decision” thisoffseason, NBA Primetime presents to you a two-part series of Q and A’s, starting with the Eastern Conference.

Will the New Jersey Nets make the playoffs this season?

After recording a league worst 12-70 (.146) record for the 09-10 season, the New Jersey Netshead into the upcoming year with Russian billionaire Mikhail Prokhorov as the new majority owner, Billy King as their General Manager, and Avery Johnson as their head-coach (with a revamped roster as well).

With Avery Johnson, the NBA’s fastest coach to win 150 wins, and a core composed of Devin HarrisTroy Murphy, and Brooke Lopez, the Nets have potential to completely turn things around this season.

Third overall pick in the 2010 NBA Draft –Derrick Favors– has impressed Johnson thisoff-season and could make a major impact in New Jersey’s success this season.

Although the Nets are certainly a much better overall team, chemistry could emerge as a serious issue as only four players remain on the roster from just one season ago.

Will New Jersey make the playoffs this season? -No.

Will the No.1 overall pick John Wall capture the Rookie of the Year Award this season?

John Wall has received plenty of hype prior to and after being selected as this years No.1 overall draft pick.

With former Washington Wizards franchise player Gilbert Arenas anticipated to be the starting shooting-guard for the club, the concern will be whether J-Wall can post solid statistics alongside of Agent Zero.

In 34.8 MPG as a freshman, Wall posted 16.6 PPG, 6.5 APG, 4.3 RPG, and 1.8 SPG on 46.1 percent shooting from the field.

Five of Wall’s fellow Wildcat teammates were drafted in the first round of the 2010 NBA draft, providing enough evidence that Kentucky had an extremely productive roster.

Wall will certainly get his own as the starting point-guard of Washington. He will see ample playing time and should post averages along the line of 15 PPG and 5-7 APGwith over one steal per contest.

But is that enough to be crowned as the Rookie of the Year?

I think not.

The Los Angeles Clippers forward Blake Griffin is projected to average 16.3 PPG, 8.2RPG, 2.2 APG, and 1.2 BPG during the upcoming season (according to CBS).

After suffering an injury during preseason which forced Griffin to miss his entire rookie season last year, the forward is expected to be 100 percent healthy by the start of this season.

If Griffin can stay healthy, he will undoubtedly be crowned as the Rookie of the Year.

Will the Miami Heat break the Chicago Bulls’ 72-win season?

Heat fans are loving the anticipation while others are flat out sick of the hype.

The Heat are a team that is composed of players that you’d most likely find on a 12-year old’s 2K10 fantasy draft team.

And even though it still sounds absurd to this day that LeBron James and Chris Bosh are now apart of Dwyane Wade’s Miami Heat, to win 72 games in a single season is pushing it.

Regardless if the big trio manage to stay healthy for an entire season, the likelihood of Miami winning more than 72 games is slim to none.

It’s more likely for Brian Scalabrine –the red-headed forward who just signed with the Chicago Bulls– to win Most Improved Player of the Year this season.

Will Miami break the Chicago Bulls’ epic record this season? -No.

Can they win 65 plus games? -Definitely.

For more of Brandon’s content check out www.NBAPrimetime.com and follow him on twitter@_nbaprimetime

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com