RIDICULOUSLY EARLY NBA AWARDS
We’re about a quarter through the NBA season and it’s time to give out some ridiculously early NBA awards.
BEST TEAM: NEW YORK KNICKS
The Knicks are on fire! At 18-5 this season it’s clear the Knickerbockers are NBA elite. Averaging 103.2 PPG and shooting lights out from 3 point range, they have looked unstoppable at times. Whether or not that “Live and Die by the 3” formula works all season is yet to be seen. But this team has finally gelled together with most of their pieces – excluding one Amare Stoudemire – and the ageless wonder Jason Kidd has easily elevated this team to another level. Throw in a determined and near possessed Carmelo Anthony and the Knicks have a chance to grab the one-seed in the East. While all of this seems nice, we all know it doesn’t mean a damn thing if the Knicks don’t make it out the first round of the playoffs.
RUNNER UP: MEMPHIS GRIZZLIES
I could have gone with somebody else in the West, but I really like the Grizzlies. They may not have any “Superstars” but collectively they have a very balanced team. Led by their fantastic front-court duo of Zach Randolph and Marc Gasol, the Grizzlies easily have the best inside game in the league. Along with Rudy Gay and Mike Conley – who’s arguably having his best season – the Grizz have a good shot in what I think is a wide open Western Conference. They also have victories against the Knicks, Thunder, and Heat this season.
MOST DISAPPOINTING TEAM: LAKERS, LAKERS, LAKERS!
I always laugh when overconfident blind Lakers fans prematurely crown them champs. Let’s be honest here: most Lakers fans are Kobe Bryant worshipers who completely disregard every other facet of basketball. The Lakers have been an absolute disaster this season. Mike Brown fired after 5 games – which was a bad hire in the first place – and now Mike “No D” Antoni has taken over the reins. Yes, Steve Nash isn’t there and Gasol still needs to find his role in the offense, so the Lakers aren’t necessarily finished. But did anyone expect the Golden State Warriors to look better than the Lakers this season?
Oh, and one more thing: how confident can we be that Dwight Howard will resign next year?
MVP: CARMELO ANTHONY
I’m guessing LeBron James winning his first championship shifted the pressure to Carmelo Anthony, who is currently the only guy in the top 5 of that ’03 draft class without a ring. Yup, even Darko has some hardware to show off. Anthony has been nothing short of amazing this season. He’s stepping up as the leader of his team and is shockingly devoted to playing defense. If Melo can continue to elevate the Knicks to the top of the East there is no doubt he will get his first MVP award.
Runners Up: Kevin Durant, LeBron James
ROOKIE OF THE YEAR: DAMIAN LILLARD
With Anthony Davis missing some games in his rookie campaign, Damian Lillard is running away with this thing. He’s already become the Blazers feature player and has had some great games. It’s also pretty remarkable that some people were skeptical of how high he was drafted and he’s been the best player in the draft this season.
COACH OF THE YEAR: MIKE WOODSON
Mike Woodson has done a superb job since taking over the Knicks. He has this team playing confident basketball and they’re only getting better. The Knicks are finally unlocking their true potential.
LVP “LEAST VALUABLE PLAYER”: CARLOS BOOZER, JOE JOHNSON
Here are two guys that make a sh*t ton of money to play above average at times. Carlos Boozer has been a complete catastrophe in Chicago. He definitely hasn’t been what the Bulls expected when he came over from Utah. And with an ailing Derrick Rose this season, you would think Boozer would step up… nope. Then there’s Joe Johnson. Johnson has fallen from an All-Star caliber player to just average. Atlanta paid him a boatload worth of money where he never really showed up when it mattered. He has a fresh start with the Brooklyn Nets where’s he’s showed some flashes. Unfortunately, the money just doesn’t add up here.
WORST TEAM: TORONTO RAPTORS
The Raptors are still in the NBA? No, seriously.