Celtics point guard Rajon Rondo is the current league leader in assists, with a whopping 13.4 per game. He is likely to remain the league’s assist leader for the indefinite future. Two time MVP Steve Nash is second on this season’s list, yet he is a considerable distance behind Rondo, averaging 10.8 assists per game. This gap will not be overcome. To put it into some context, assume for a moment that Nash and Rondo both play every game remaining in their respective regular seasons, and that Nash assumes his 10.8apg pace throughout. If Nash passes for exactly 10.8 apg over Phoenix’s remaining 43 games, Rondo need average only 9.3 assists per game for the remainder of the season to stay ahead of him. That’s still a lot, but not for Rondo. (As an aside, when was the last time had 10 times more assists than fouls? Because that’s where Steve Nash is at right now.) Rondo’s 13.4 apg average, should it sustain, would be the 8th highest total of all time. Only 7 times has it been bettered – 5 of those times by all time assist leader John Stockton – and never by more than 1.1apg. It is perhaps therefore understandable that Rondo, notorious over-passer than he is, is unashamedly going for the record. On a team filled with scorers other than him, and in such proximity to the record, he might as well. He has both the talent and the mindset. However, he still needs huge assists from others. While it is not the intent of this author to debate Rondo’s playmaking nor shot selection skills, it is worth noting quite how much goes into obtaining even one assist. This is particularly the case when you are playing at home. In last night’s game against Orlando, Rondo […]
Per this story from George Brown of WREG.com, former NBA big man Lorenzen Wright has gone missing. The family of Lorenzen Wright says he’s been missing since Sunday. Wright’s sister, Savia Archie, says her family is very concerned. Archie said, Wright was last seen on sunday when he was expected to fly out of Memphis, but no one has heard from him since. The family has filed a missing persons with the Collierville police department.
It’s the first day of the 2010 free agent negotiation period, and already players are being overpaid. There follows news and opinions of all the signings so far. – The first signing of the season didn’t involve a free agent, but a draft pick. Minnesota signed their 2008 second-round draft pick Nikola Pekovic to a deal worth three years and $13 million, according to Chad Ford. This is a decent price for Pekovic, who may well start straight away if and when Al Jefferson is traded. Pekovic is one hell of a paint scorer, able to get position on anyone and with terrific touch around the basket. Per 36 minutes in the EuroLeague, Pekovic averaged 24 points; per 36 in the Greek league, that went up to 28.3. Pekovic shot a ridiculous 73% from the field in the A1 league, alongside 75% from the line, and while those numbers dip to 59% and 71% in the higher standard EuroLeague, they were still pretty beastly. Pekovic’s rebounding is a valid concern (grabbing a defensive rebound once every 11 minutes in EuroLeague play isn’t nearly good enough); to be sure, he’s a sub-par and disinterested defensive rebounder who does not cover ground well. Equally valid concerns are his average size and below-average speed for the centre spot at the NBA level – he won’t have the huge size advantages he often enjoyed against minnow opposition in Europe, and he’s a bit grounded regardless. But the offence, and that efficiency, is genuinely impressive. And that’s an interesting quality to have in any centre. If it sounds like I just described Eddy Curry, be comforted that the two aren’t comparable beyond that. Pekovic isn’t nearly the athlete Eddy is (was), but nor is he as bad of a defender. Or passer. Or economist. […]
How’s your Ukrainian? Mine’s terrible. In fact, if it wasn’t for knowing that “Oleh Luzhny” translated into English as “we need an upgrade at full back”, then I wouldn’t be able to speak a word of the language. Thankfully, Google Translate can. And unless Google Translate has hit the bottle or something, it brings us news of a former NBA centre leaving a Ukrainian team with time still left on his contract, in order to go to Africa and do a Madonna. So to speak. Ukrainian news website Niknews has the story: Центровой МБК «Николаев» Дэниел МакКлинток на днях обратился к президенту клуба Андрею Черепанову с просьбой разрешить ему покинуть команду по семейным обстоятельствам до истечения срока контракта. Учитывая вклад Д. МакКлинтока в выступление николаевской команды в чемпионате, а также серьезность причин, по которым Дэниелу надо выехать в другую страну, Андрей Владимирович согласился предоставить ему такую возможность. Стоит отметить, что это никак не связано с экономией средств. Николаевский клуб и американский баскетболист готовы были выполнять все условия контракта до конца сезона. Но дело в том, что супруги МакКлинтоки усыновляют двух детей-сирот из Эфиопии, а оформление документов потребовало их присутствия в этой африканской стране. Crudely translated, this come out as: Center-MBC “Nikolaev” Daniel McClintock recently turned to the club’s president Andrei Cherepanov to allow him to leave the team for family reasons before the expiry of the contract. Given the contribution of D. McClintock in the statement of Nicholas’s Team Championships, as well as the seriousness of the reasons why Daniel should go to another country, Andrey agreed to give him that opportunity. It is worth noting that this has nothing to do with savings. Nicholas Club and the American basketball player were ready to comply with all conditions of the contract before the end of the season. But the fact […]
Yesterday, the Detroit Pistons waived 2008 second-round draft pick and flopper extraordinaire, Deron Washington. They had initially signed him back in August to be their 14th and last man, giving him a two-year minimum salary deal with $250,000 guaranteed in the first season. Yet after bringing in Chucky Atkins on an unguaranteed one-year deal for training camp (a move that they won’t have foreseen prior to the Washington signing), the Pistons began to feel that Atkins was more deserving of the 14th man spot, and so they waived Washington to allow them to keep Chucky. That’s the official line, at least. It doesn’t really make a lot of sense though. Disregarding the respective talent levels and fits on the roster of the two players, the finances of the situation seemed to dictate that Deron stayed on. Washington’s large amount of guaranteed money (over 50% of his overall contract for this year) meant that the Pistons could have kept him on until the league-wide contract guarantee date of January 10th, without having to pay him a single extra penny outside of meal stipends. Waive him yesterday, and he’ll cost $250,000; waive him on January 6th, and he’ll still only cost $250,000. Therefore, why waive him? The Pistons aren’t pressed for cash – after a summer of cap room, they rock a payroll of only $58,597,137, 25th in the league. They’ve run out of cap room and exceptions, hence the need for all the minimum salary deals, but they’ll spend what they can anyway. They can afford to swallow Washington without any repercussions coming from it; they’ll lose very little from it. They’ve lost a player that wasn’t in the rotation, and no extra money than what they had already committed, but they’ll also gain absolutely nothing from it. Even if Washington […]