Unlocked … 2012 NBA Season Report #6

With football gone, now we are getting the important stuff.  How have the rankings changed since we last did this?

  1. (2) Heat (25-7)
  2. (4) Thunder (25-7)
  3. (1) Bulls (26-8)
  4. (3) Sixers (20-12)
  5. (5) Spurs (23-9)
  6. (9) Mavericks (20-12)
  7. (6) Hawks (19-13)
  8. (8) Nuggets (18-15)
  9. (7) Blazers (17-16)
  10. (10) Lakers (19-13)
  11. (15) Magic (21-12)
  12. (11) Clippers (19-11)
  13. (13) Rockets (19-14)
  14. (16) Grizzlies (18-15)
  15. (14) Pacers (19-12)
  16. (12) Celtics (15-16)
  17. (17) Timberwolves (16-17)
  18. (19) Warriors (12-17)
  19. (18) Jazz (15-16)
  20. (20) Bucks (13-20)
  21. (22) Suns (14-19)
  22. (21) Knicks (16-17)
  23. (24) Hornets (7-24)
  24. (23) Cavaliers (12-17)
  25. (25) Raptors (9-23)
  26. (26) Kings (10-21)
  27. (28) Nets (10-24)
  28. (29) Pistons (11-22)
  29. (27) Wizards (7-25)
  30. (30) Bobcats (4-27)

Some notes:

  1. Who is that masked man at #4.  As Jim Ross might say, MY GAWD!!!  IT’S THE SAN ANTONIO SPURS!!  Somehow or another, they are a factor again – rising all the way up to the lofty #5 position.  Of course this should not be surprising us anymore – the Spurs decade long run of contendorhood is pretty amazing.  What is more interesting though is how stereotypes tend to work.  If you dismiss the Spurs – or just don’t think of them – you might lean on what you remember from 2003 and 2007 as to who they are – withering defense and Tim Duncan.  However, this team – assembling so many wins against a good schedule – is actually not a good defensive team.  It is weird to say that the Spurs are an offensive team – and certainly their below average pace hides the explosiveness – but this is a team that wins by scoring (6th on offense).  In particular, they win because they can shoot – 4th in total FG%, 3rd best three point percentage while making the 5th most (per possession) – it carries them to the 5th best true shooting team in the league.  The shot generation is average – they don’t recover many of their few misses, but they hardly turn it over so they are getting a solid number of looks.  On defense, they actually resemble the 2007 Suns more than the 2007 Spurs, where their real strength is not fouling (tops in the league), allowing the 8th fewest makes from 3 and 2nd in the league in defensive rebounding.  They force a lot of 2 point shots and recover misses – which allows their defense to be meh (instead of bad).
  2. And while we get a view of the top with the Spurs, let’s go down low and appreciate the awesome level of badness that is the Charlotte Bobcats.  At 4-27, the record is pristine to be sure.  They are on pace to win more than the 9-73 rate the 1973 Sixers team did.  Indeed, I expect some winning to pick up as Gerald Henderson returns and the other teams start to care less and focus on playoff positioning.  This is all crap we know.  In the same vein, the Bobcats are currently rating a staggering -10.7 points.  Let’s put it this way, the Wizards – also terrible at 7-25, would be nearly 5 point favorites – it’s really that bad.  The Bobcats lack of talent is obvious – seriously if Kemba Walker is your beacon of hope (Walker is a nice prospect – but a Vinnie Johnson upside) what can you say?  Obviously the Bobcats are the worst offense in the league, alternating poor shooting with poor offensive rebounding.  They are the worst at making shots they get, and 23rd in getting shots of any kind.  What is a surprise to a degree though is defensively they are also pretty terrible, allowing the 28th best FG% overall and being 2nd from the bottom in forcing turnovers along with a desultory 24th in rebounding.  Really the team is just bad in an admirably consistent way.  Even the Timberwolves of last year for instance, estimably awful, but capable at recovering misses.  Charlotte can’t even do that right.

One thought on “Unlocked … 2012 NBA Season Report #6

  1. The spurs are winning because they have the best coach in the league right now… Gregg Popovich, unless Phil Jackson comes out of retirement!

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