BY: ALEX GOLDEN
Last season after 18-games, the Kings were 5-13. At this point in the season they’re 10-8. There offense was woeful (29th) and their defense (27th) wasn’t much better either. However, this season they’re 11th in Offensive Rating and 16th in Defensive Rating. The turnaround for the Kings has been the talk of the league, and the growth of De’Aaron Fox has been the lead story for the Kings this season.
Point Guard, and 5th overall pick of the 2017 NBA Draft, De’Aaron Fox is leading the Sacramento Kings to one of the best starts this franchise has had in years. Without an opportunity to tank, the Kings are looking to develop their young talent and strengthen they’re chemistry. This season has caught many people by surprise, because nobody expected the Kings to be this competitive. But with an improved De’Aaron Fox leading the way, the Kings are above .500 with a 10-8 record.
BY: TIFFANY TRIPP
Saturday night, my twitter timeline was set ablaze as the Utah Jazz played the Boston Celtics. Much of the fiery discourse centered around Gordon Hayward (or Haywood, depending on who you ask). Fans of both teams have every reason to be concerned with how the Celtics forward is performing, with one being his former team’s fan-base—a fan-base that feels slighted and betrayed by his departure—and the other a base whose team doled out a max contract to sign him. His decision to leave the Jazz to sign with the Celtics has created a bona fide rivalry, the likes of which we don’t see very often over just one player.
BY: MATTHEW EMERY
Carmelo Anthony’s time with the Rockets was brief. According to Adrian Wojnarowski, the Rockets and Anthony have agreed to part ways this season.
The Rockets are likely making calls around the league to ensure that a team wants to claim him off waivers before they submit the request to the league. If a team agrees to claim him off waivers, then the Rockets are no longer responsible for paying his salary and have no dead cap hit for this season. If no one claims him off waivers, then the team will be responsible for paying him his full amount this season and will also take the full cap hit.
However, if Anthony signs a new contract after clearing waivers, then the Rockets will have the right to set-off a portion of the salary they are paying him and the cap hit. The amount of the set-off is always one-half the difference between the player’s new salary and the minimum salary for a one year veteran during the season.
For example, if he signs the minimum with Golden State (which is $2,393,887), then the Rockets can decrease its salary obligation and cap hit by $499,752 each. This means that Rockets will only have to pay him $1,894,135 in salary and the cap hit would be $1,012,849. You may be asking why the cap hit is less than his salary even though his salary his fully guaranteed. The NBA lowers the cap hits for veteran free agents who sign minimum deals to the value of the two-year veteran minimum ($1,512,601). This
incentivizes teams to sign older players.
Of course, the team prefers to not pay him the rest of his salary and wants to avoid the dead cap hit, which is why they hope a they can arrange for a team to claim him off waivers.
bY: jAMES hOLAS
Last night, the Celtics throttled the Chicago Bulls. The Celtics’ collection of versatile wings did versatile wing things, with Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, and Gordon Hayward combining for 43 points, 16 rebounds, 7 assists, 5 steals, and 5 made threes. Kyrie Irving dashed and dazzled his way to 17 points (on just 8 shots), 7 dimes, and 2 steals. Big men Al Horford and Aron Baynes demolished their counterparts, racking up 19 points, 19 rebounds, 4 blocks, and 4 threes, and made life miserable for rookie Horford doppelganger Wendell Carter (and any Bulls guard brave enough to challenge the duo). The bench guards, Terry Rozier and Marcus Smart, chipped in 20 points and provided defense and energy, helping hold Zach lavine (3-11, 10 points) to 16 points below his average.
BY: mATTHEW eMERY
It’s no surprise that New York Knicks shooting guard Courtney Lee is available on the trade market. He has yet to make his debut this season, and it seems unlikely, as Coach Fizdale appears to be more focused on developing the team’s youth. Assuming he returns to full health, Lee is still a serviceable player that could contribute off the bench for a playoff team. He averaged 12 p.p.g. last season on 45.4% shooting. He also shot the three ball well at 40.6%. He would be a solid 3&D player for a playoff team that needs some scoring punch off the bench. However, he is overpaid at $12 million a year. Lee’s value at this point is probably something closer to the mid-level exception which varies between $4 million and $8 million, depending on the season and team’s cap position.
By: Colin Krauss
Zach LaVine has successfully justified his contract and it only took 11 games. It's hard to believe that LaVine has been in the NBA for five years already, but his story continues to tell itself. LaVine spent his first three years in Minnesota next to Andrew Wiggins and Karl Anthony-Towns, until he was traded to the Chicago Bulls in the 2017 off-season. He has had to face the injury bug, but he is looking 100% healthy so far in the 2018-2019 season. The high-flier that won the Dunk Contest in 2016 can do a whole lot more now than sky to the rim for posters.
By: COlin Krauss
The NBA should be on full alert. The Warriors look even better than at any point in the last two years.
The Golden State Warriors have started off the year scorching hot. They currently stand at 9-1 after a convincing win over the Minnesota Timberwolves. Their only loss came in the form of a 2-point nailbiter to the Denver Nuggets. A busy schedule to start has done nothing to slow them down. They are the only team to have played 10 games so far.
The Dubs have the best Net Rating in the NBA, coming at +13.3. They have the best offense, with a 119.7 Offensive Rating, which is over 4 points above the next best team. They even have the 9th best Defensive Rating at 106.3.