2023-2024 General NBA Season Thread

tims4wins

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I love tracking the Knicks minutes.

Hart averaged 41.6 MPG in March, up from 39.9 in February. He was under 30 MPG season to date through January.

McBride is Thibs' new pet project. His first 54 games, he averaged 15.1 MPG. His last 7 he is averaging 44.7 MPG. (!!)

Long live Thibs.
 

PedroKsBambino

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Fascinating to see Embiid on return. He was playing at a spectacular level when he went out - how close can he come, and when, to that?

Also, while I know there's some level of disagreement here, I'm of the view he has had pretty regularly conditioning issues and so for me, how quickly he is back in cardio shape for the heavy load he carries is another layer of uncertainty on top of the knee. We have almost no idea what he has and hasn't been doing - he certainly won't be 100% in game shape initially (no one could be) but how close or far from that conditioning wise is huge factor we know almost nothing about right now. It wouldn't shock me if he's visibily heavier and can only manage 5 minute bursts...it also wouldn't shock me if he's been doing swim and other cardio and is as far along as you reasonably can be coming off a knee injury. Just no idea.
 

tims4wins

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Now 100% rooting for the Heat to finish 6th, the Sixers to win the first play-in and finish 7th, and whatever happens with 8. Mainly because I want the Heat on the other side of the bracket, and I want to see Embiid vs. Giannis in round 1. Also the Heat and Knicks are made for each other.
 

InstaFace

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Dude is probably going to be lumbering quite a bit and can’t imagine his conditioning is anywhere close to where it needs to be but we’ll see.
i imagine he should, medically, be taking even more time off. But now that we're in April, it's fish-or-cut-bait time for the season - he either needs to work himself into playoff shape in the remaining fortnight, or he's definitely out for the season and there's no point to him coming back at all because he'd hurt more than help. The remaining regular-season games do matter for Philly, but not so much that he can't treat them as an opportunity to work himself back into game shape.

Was it @radsoxfan who was posting about his options and likely timeframes depending on the route he chose? I imagine he'll have more specific thoughts.

Either that or we need to look at the calendar and have a laugh today - this one's plausible but maybe just unlikely enough to be an AFD candidate.
 

slamminsammya

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It's pretty wild that the Celtics have a bigger gap to the peak Warriors than the peak Warriors had to the 2004 (!) Mavs.
i’ve also been losing my mind at the fact their offensive rating since the asb when the league decided to revert to 90s officiating is like 129. which is like giving up a wide open 3 by a sniper every single possession
 

wade boggs chicken dinner

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ESPN Sources: Philadelphia 76ers star Joel Embiid is nearing a return and expected to play this week. The reigning MVP has been out since January 30 with a left meniscus injury. His status for Tuesday vs. OKC is expected later today.
It would be the most 76er thing ever for Embiid to come back and then hurt his knee more seriously. Gun to his head, Morey can't think that this is a good idea.

Still, Embiid looks pretty good in the short video from yesterday - although I don't believe he's had any contact up to that point.

View: https://twitter.com/ub790uy2l/status/1774443289539989768
 

benhogan

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Out of all the amazing things the C's do on offense, it's Jrue step back & Corner3s that have been the biggest surprise for me.

Less ball-handling duties has led to better shot attempts (more C&S3s)
 

Murderer's Crow

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Knicks injuries that scare me is really Anunoby more than anything. Randle nothing has changed, he dislocated his shoulder and should be back for the playoffs. I don’t care about Mitch because Hartenstein is awesome. Anunoby seems like anyone’s guess.
 

radsoxfan

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i imagine he should, medically, be taking even more time off. But now that we're in April, it's fish-or-cut-bait time for the season - he either needs to work himself into playoff shape in the remaining fortnight, or he's definitely out for the season and there's no point to him coming back at all because he'd hurt more than help. The remaining regular-season games do matter for Philly, but not so much that he can't treat them as an opportunity to work himself back into game shape.

Was it @radsoxfan who was posting about his options and likely timeframes depending on the route he chose? I imagine he'll have more specific thoughts.

Either that or we need to look at the calendar and have a laugh today - this one's plausible but maybe just unlikely enough to be an AFD candidate.
Embiid has been out a reasonable amount of time for a generic partial meniscectomy if they just shaved out some meniscus (rather than any sort of repair). Maybe even a bit conservative. But so many variations of meniscus tears and surgeries it's really hard to generalize.

Would wonder what type of playing she he is in for sure, thats always been a challenge for him.
 

jon abbey

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Knicks injuries that scare me is really Anunoby more than anything. Randle nothing has changed, he dislocated his shoulder and should be back for the playoffs. I don’t care about Mitch because Hartenstein is awesome. Anunoby seems like anyone’s guess.
Randle still hasn't faced contact in practice and so much of his game is bully ball leading with his shoulder, I doubt he's coming back this year and if he does, I doubt he'll be effective.

And they need Mitch to take at least 15-20 minutes at the 5 from Hartenstein, Achiuwa can do it in some matchups but some he gets destroyed.
 

DeJesus Built My Hotrod

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lars10

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It would be the most 76er thing ever for Embiid to come back and then hurt his knee more seriously. Gun to his head, Morey can't think that this is a good idea.

Still, Embiid looks pretty good in the short video from yesterday - although I don't believe he's had any contact up to that point.

View: https://twitter.com/ub790uy2l/status/1774443289539989768
Almost all of his shots are outside and the video doesn’t seem to show any contact with his body.. also..did Embiid call an and 1 on his layup? He’s the guy you hate playing in a pickup game.. the type where you have to eventually argue with to say that “it’s not a foul every time you miss a shot.”
 

DeadlySplitter

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Pacers up 105-70 in the front of a home & home with Brooklyn. I doubt they fall into the play-in, but there is a head to head with Miami left.
 

BigMike

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In the last month, Giddey has been on a tear. Anyone still arguing that he's a bad fit for the Thunder?


That's me

Presti should build around SGA + J-Will + Chet.
The idea is to package Giddey + picks to a rebuilder for a more experienced All-Star level player who can help now.

Markkanen was suggested (if he wants to win now). OKC could use size upfront
I do think he is a bad, or at lest less than ideal fit for the Thunder. This doesn't mean he can't be a good player there, but he'll never be the player he can be there. he is player who is best with the ball in his hands, and the Thunder have 2 other guys (at least) in the starting lineup who want the ball in their hands all the time. His best play this year comes when Shai is injured out/limited.

I said it before if you try to turn josh Giddy into Isiah Joe and have him run around just hoping to get an open jumpshot all game, then that is a complete waste of his ability, Joe does that well, he does almost nothing else Giddy can do, but he is much better at being Isiah Joe

That said not sure you trade him this summer, because you'd be selling very low on his value, but I guess it all depends on what happens in the postseason

I do think they need another big, just not sure they need another superstar
 

slamminsammya

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I do think he is a bad, or at lest less than ideal fit for the Thunder. This doesn't mean he can't be a good player there, but he'll never be the player he can be there. he is player who is best with the ball in his hands, and the Thunder have 2 other guys (at least) in the starting lineup who want the ball in their hands all the time. His best play this year comes when Shai is injured out/limited.

I said it before if you try to turn josh Giddy into Isiah Joe and have him run around just hoping to get an open jumpshot all game, then that is a complete waste of his ability, Joe does that well, he does almost nothing else Giddy can do, but he is much better at being Isiah Joe

That said not sure you trade him this summer, because you'd be selling very low on his value, but I guess it all depends on what happens in the postseason

I do think they need another big, just not sure they need another superstar
does his value go up more though by keeping him? they’ll still have the same problem finding him opportunities to showcase his skills.
 

benhogan

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I do think he is a bad, or at lest less than ideal fit for the Thunder. This doesn't mean he can't be a good player there, but he'll never be the player he can be there. he is player who is best with the ball in his hands, and the Thunder have 2 other guys (at least) in the starting lineup who want the ball in their hands all the time. His best play this year comes when Shai is injured out/limited.

I said it before if you try to turn josh Giddy into Isiah Joe and have him run around just hoping to get an open jumpshot all game, then that is a complete waste of his ability, Joe does that well, he does almost nothing else Giddy can do, but he is much better at being Isiah Joe

That said not sure you trade him this summer, because you'd be selling very low on his value, but I guess it all depends on what happens in the postseason

I do think they need another big, just not sure they need another superstar
Agreed. Isiah Joe works better as a complimentary player (and Giddey has more trade value).

OKC/Presti should do exactly what Boston/Brad have done, consolidate/build around your core 2 or 3 players.

Every rebuilder will be ringing Presti this summer asking for Giddey. The bid will be healthy.
I like Markkanen, but if Danny wants to hang on to him, then Presti should add a defense-first BIG (to protect Chet).
Surprised OKC didn't chase Tillman.
 

HomeRunBaker

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does his value go up more though by keeping him? they’ll still have the same problem finding him opportunities to showcase his skills.
I think his value is fine and I’d imagine pretty high. Teams know his skillset and what he’s capable of by his time on the floor when he does have the freedom to play his game. He’s still ridiculously young too.
 

PedroKsBambino

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Yeah, I don't think they HAVE to move him - he is an ok fit there, and he can be the second-unit creator. If a deal appears that lets them get either another quality stretch big or another two-way wing with range, they should take it but giving up talent just to enhance fit a bit probably isn't necessary.

OKC is just fascinating to project - so many picks, near-term cap room, and a great young core. How do you get one more upgraded piece? And realistically plan to keep it all together.
 

m0ckduck

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I'm not a big believer in the Mavericks, and yet I find myself wondering if they have the best chance of any team in the West to upset Denver. The recipe is pretty straightforward: Luka and Kyrie outproduce Jokic and Murray (entirely possible) and the disparity between the rest of the rosters isn't enough to be meaningful. They also at least have two large live bodies to throw at Jokic in Lively and Gafford.

Granted, I also wouldn't be surprised to see them fail to get out of the first round.
 

PedroKsBambino

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I'm surprised DARKO is so bearish on Banchero. I would expect him to grade out closer to Ant than to Cade Cunningham and yet DARKO has him basically level with the latter.
The problem for Banchero is that he's been really inefficient offensively - 44% shooting overall, 32% from three. Nets out to a 55% TS and that's 333rd in NBA (give or take). For a guy who also isn't a plus defender, and is a good but not exceptional passer, that is a "good stats, bad team" profile.

I'm not saying that is all Banchero is or will be, but I think that's what DARKO is seeing to date. The big question, team-building wise, is what Banchero would look like offensively with another year or two of seasoning AND some actual spacing around him...that's the reason for hope/upside.
 

RorschachsMask

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I’m not as high on the Wolves as some, Ant isn’t ready yet.

That said, I think that they’re probably the best bet to knock Denver out. Minny is a really tough matchup for them, IMO.
 

PedroKsBambino

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I'll add Clippers to the "Could beat Denver" list. They play again Thursday which will be fun to see.

On paper (which, with the Clippers, is always an important distinction to note) they have a credible big vs Jokic, the same ability Celtics to do really cause problems for Denver on the wings, a sticky defense, and an alpha who might be able to come close to matching Jokic late. You'd like another quality big to bang with Jokic (maybe Tucker can be useful here---because Theis got called for two fouls on Jokic while I wrote this sentence) No one on this board is ever going to bet on Clips health or Harden showing up when it matters, but the profile is there to hurt Denver.
 

m0ckduck

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I like Markkanen, but if Danny wants to hang on to him, then Presti should add a defense-first BIG (to protect Chet).
Surprised OKC didn't chase Tillman.
OKC is just fascinating to project - so many picks, near-term cap room, and a great young core. How do you get one more upgraded piece? And realistically plan to keep it all together.
It's a tricky situation because the pieces complement each other right now, and are young enough that one can project improvement. And yet, it's not clear that there's enough size and rebounding for it to work. So, where do you upgrade? It's easy to say "just add another big" but it's not clear that adding, say, Nic Claxton next summer actually makes them a better team while he's on the floor. Seems like going all-in on a truly elite PF is the move, but not clear who the target will be if Markkanen isn't available.

The C's have a similar issue building around Porzingis, but they've managed to put length and strength around him at every position to make it work. And, still, if they lose, it will likely be because they get trucked by Jokic or Giannis in the playoffs.
 

PedroKsBambino

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Markkanen is the oft-mentioned name (including in this thread) for them. I wonder a bit about whether (in terms of ball dominance and defense/rebounding) he truly is perfect fit. As Scal noted last night, Porzingis would potentially have fit - though he's fairly duplicative of Chet. The challenge is they need to add rebounding and bulk while still ideally preserving at least ability to sometimes go 5-out. And they can't have Al Horford! So there's likely not a perfect fit, but there's some interesting ones who I think help, even if not necessarily 30+ minute a game guys on that roster.

In terms of profiles I'd think about as OKC, beyond Markkenen.....Wendell Carter is interesting, as is Onyeka Okongwu. Brandon Clarke is that profile, though maybe not quite big enough. He probably isn't available even for a draft pick overplay, but wouldn't you think about JJJ? While he's not as bulky as you'd like, he can space floor and isn't hopeless against size.

Less likely, and also likely not worth the chemistry risk, Julius Randle and to a lesser degree Pascal Siakam are a little interesting (don't see either, to be clear, and Siakam only partially addresses the need for rebounding). An out-of-the-box option is KAT - and no, I don't think that'll ever happen.

Then there's guys who are more clearly role players, but would improve what they have now as a bench 5 - Gafford/Steven Adams types who give size but at cost of floor spacing. I'm not sure they would bother relative to just playing big Jaylin Williams more, but maybe. To me, Claxton and similar bigs don't really help - at least, relative to cost as they won't play that profile 25-30 minutes a game, imo.

I get those guys will cost things - but OKC can afford to overpay for what I agree is a specific fit. And that is why I'm curious how they play it...
 

m0ckduck

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If we're discussing long shots, Domantas Sabonis would be very interesting for OKC. His availability is probably nil, but if the Kings go nowhere in the postseason and OKC makes a godfather offer of picks + Giddey....... maybe?
 

PedroKsBambino

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Yeah, that's a really interesting one too. Like you said, unlikely available but spectacular rebounder and while not a 5-out guy, can score, pass, and rebound effectively and might also be a guy fairly willing to scale down to fewer minutes to win.
 

m0ckduck

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Yeah. Sabonis also seems potentially like KP: miscast as a 1 or even a 2 on a contending team— but an amazing complementary piece to have as the third-best guy on a stacked team.
 

PedroKsBambino

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Sacramento is pretty clearly a 'capped' team in the sense of ceiling given that a Sabonis/Fox core is almost surely not going to be able to win many playoff series and they also have no real path to a third star.

So if they hired Darryl Morey I would indeed guess Sabonis would be gone.

Not a lot from Vivek's tenure makes me think he really gets how you build a championship caliber team, and I imagine he both is deluded abotu this core's upside and in love with last year's energy. But it is an interesting one to ponder because logically, Kings would love to get Giddey/young players/picks to reload around Fox....
 

Kliq

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OKC was part of the trade and helped facilitate Gafford to Dallas, and it remains strange that they didn't just beat Dallas' pretty mediocre offer to Washington to get Gafford for themselves.
 

Euclis20

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The problem for Banchero is that he's been really inefficient offensively - 44% shooting overall, 32% from three. Nets out to a 55% TS and that's 333rd in NBA (give or take). For a guy who also isn't a plus defender, and is a good but not exceptional passer, that is a "good stats, bad team" profile.

I'm not saying that is all Banchero is or will be, but I think that's what DARKO is seeing to date. The big question, team-building wise, is what Banchero would look like offensively with another year or two of seasoning AND some actual spacing around him...that's the reason for hope/upside.
I get the logic, but he's easily the best offensive player on a team 13 games over .500 (and every other offensive player of note is in their early 20s), it feels like in year two like he's already passed the good stats bad team profile. I'm extremely high on Banchero (I think he's the best player drafted between Luka and Wemby, meaning longterm I'd take him over both Edwards and SGA), if Wagner hadn't forgotten how to shoot from 3 I think Orlando would be a solid bet to upset a team like Cleveland or the Knicks in round 1.
 

the moops

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OKC was part of the trade and helped facilitate Gafford to Dallas, and it remains strange that they didn't just beat Dallas' pretty mediocre offer to Washington to get Gafford for themselves.
Maybe. But OKC got a swap from Dallas in 2028. Luka is a free agent in 2027, and Dallas has no picks going forward. That pick could be very very juicy
 

the moops

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I'm extremely high on Banchero (I think he's the best player drafted between Luka and Wemby, meaning longterm I'd take him over both Edwards and SGA)
I could maybe, maybe see taking him over Ant, but that is crazy talk that you would take him over 25 year old MVP, or almost MVP SGA
 

InstaFace

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I'm not a big believer in the Mavericks, and yet I find myself wondering if they have the best chance of any team in the West to upset Denver. The recipe is pretty straightforward: Luka and Kyrie outproduce Jokic and Murray (entirely possible) and the disparity between the rest of the rosters isn't enough to be meaningful. They also at least have two large live bodies to throw at Jokic in Lively and Gafford.

Granted, I also wouldn't be surprised to see them fail to get out of the first round.
I think this really understates how good an outside shooter MPJ is, or that Dallas has nobody like Aaron Gordon who has an Al Horford-like ability to defend centers but also defend at the perimeter (and is a lot younger / springy-er).

Could Kyrie and Luka catch fire and win a playoff game against Denver? Sure. But if they go on a tear, I think it looks more like a 6 or 7 game series than it does a series win.
 

Ed Hillel

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I'm not saying Denver isn't good, but it's strange to me the pedestal they've been put on based on a single championship that involved going through about the easiest path possible to win (and of course Miami's scrub players going unprecedented God mode for a month ended during said series). I think 4-5 teams could credibly beat Denver in the West, it's not like this is peak Warriors we are talking about here.
 

Euclis20

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I'm not saying Denver isn't good, but it's strange to me the pedestal they've been put on based on a single championship that involved going through about the easiest path possible to win (and of course Miami's scrub players going unprecedented God mode for a month ended during said series). I think 4-5 teams could credibly beat Denver in the West, it's not like this is peak Warriors we are talking about here.
I get this, and am somewhat on the same page. I don't think they're some dominating inevitability, but I think Jokic is the best player in the league by a good stretch, and when Murray plays they win at a 60-61 game pace. They're also in their prime at the exact right moment - OKC/MIN are just a bit too young and LAC/LAL/PHO/GS are all just a bit too old. The rest of the WC playoff field (DAL/NOP/SAC) have stars in their primes, but feel solidly a level below the top of the conference.

I could maybe, maybe see taking him over Ant, but that is crazy talk that you would take him over 25 year old MVP, or almost MVP SGA
That's fair. I like SGA a lot, I'm just extremely high on what Banchero can be (a 21 year old in year two leading an extremely inexperienced team to the 45+ wins is pretty great, and he's got a ton of room to grow). Listening to some of the recent conversation about who the best American player can be, it was baffling to not hear his name.
 

Ed Hillel

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I get this, and am somewhat on the same page. I don't think they're some dominating inevitability, but I think Jokic is the best player in the league by a good stretch, and when Murray plays they win at a 60-61 game pace. They're also in their prime at the exact right moment - OKC/MIN are just a bit too young and LAC/LAL/PHO/GS are all just a bit too old. The rest of the WC playoff field (DAL/NOP/SAC) have stars in their primes, but feel solidly a level below the top of the conference.
I can buy Denver as the favorites, but it's very slight and I would say, unlike Boston, Denver is not better than a coin flip to win their conference.