NBA News: Klay Thompson Explosion, Kobe injury, Cavs back?, etc.


NBA News — It’s been a while since we’ve done one of these posts, but we’re back to delivering weekly updates about different happenings around the NBA.

This past week? Well, it’s been a very interesting one, one that consisted of thing we didn’t want to ever happen and some we probably wouldn’t have predicted happening if asked a million times.

With that said, here’s a quick look around the NBA starting out with a record-breaking performance from the man that was most known for not being traded for Kevin Love in the summertime.

Klay Thompson es en Fuego

As a friend of mine said on Twitter, when you’re breaking scoring records set by Wilt Chamberlain, you’re doing something special.

To be specific, Klay had himself one hell of a game against the Sacramento Kings, scoring 37 of his 52 points (tied Mo Williams‘ season-high) in the third quarter to break the record for most points scored in a quarter, breaking the previous record held by George Gervin and Carmelo Anthony (33).


More than Wilt ever scored in a quarter. More than Jordan ever score. More than Kobe ever scored in a quarter.

I can’t find the proper words to describe what was seen, so I’ll let the tape do the talking.

While hindsight revision is the worst kind of revision, the Golden State Warriors look pretty smart by not wanting to include Klay in Kevin Love trade talks from this past summer. There’s no way to predict how Thompson would be playing as a Timberwolf or how Love be playing in Steve Kerr‘s system, but through the first 3 and a 1/2 months in the season, Klay is living up to that max contract and doing it the right way.

Mamba Out

Once again, Father Time is proving he’s the most untouchable entity in all of sports. And once again, Kobe Bryant has fallen victim to injury that could sideline him for the remainder of the season after tearing his rotator cuff against the New Orleans Pelicans.

Kobe fan or not, it sucks to see one of the league’s best players go out like this — it’d be his third consecutive season-ending injury (achilles in 2012-13, knee in 2013-14).

Bryant wasn’t having the best season — in fact, it was technically his worst ever, averaging 22.3 points on 37 percent shooting, 5.7 rebounds and 5.6 assists per game — but he was just figuring out how to venture into the post-prime part of his career, initiating the offense as point forward.

Hopefully Bryant recovers well enough to receive the storybook send-off he deserves in 2015-16 (he’s not turning down that $20+ million the Lakers owe him next summer unless his body completely falls apart).

Cavs streaking

It took a couple of trades, but the Cleveland Cavaliers are finally starting to look like the team we expected coming into the season.

Fresh off a 39-point beatdown on the Charlotte Hornets, the Cavaliers are now undefeated in their last five (5-1 since LeBron James returned from injury), posting a net rating of 16.2 and offensive/defensive ratings of 120.2/104.1 in that timeframe. On the defensive end of the floor, there’s room of improvement, especially with Iman Shumpert making his team debut against the Hornets (8 points, 2 rebounds, 2 assists in 9 minutes).

Most importantly, the teams Big 3 are starting to look as if they are blending with each other — James is playing his best basketball of arguably the last two seasons (29.0 points on 51-33-66 splits, 6.8 rebounds, 6.8 assists), Kyrie Irving is still playing well while kicking things up a notch on the defensive end and Kevin Love, the weakest link of the bunch so far, is starting to look more comfortable in the flow of the offense, a.k.a. David Blatt is using him better.

There’s still a long ways to go for this team, but it finally looks like the leagues biggest disappointment is catching up with the rest of the NBA.

February 6th!!!

What if I told you that February 6 would be a potential NBA Finals matchup between the Atlanta Hawks and Golden State Warriors before the season? Your probably wouldn’t believe and neither would I.

But it’s real and it seems like the entire NBA fanbase is patiently waiting for the leagues two best teams to face off.

The Golden State Warriors are on a four-game winning streak (fresh off the Klay-splosion) while the Atlanta HaWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW have won a franchise-best 15 games in a row, last defeating the Kevin Durant-led Oklahoma City Thunder. It’s unclear if both teams will be on their streaks when the 6th comes around, but it won’t matter.

It’s Al Horford vs. Andrew Bogut.

It’s Paul Millsap vs. Draymond Green.

It’s Kyle Korver vs. Klay Thompson.

It’s Jeff Teague vs. Stephen Curry.

If you’re a fan of the game, you’ll have your popcorn ready for this duel of NBA mammoths.

Quick Hits

  • Last night, the Detroit Pistons suffered a crucial loss as Brandon Jennings tweaked his achilles on a non-contact play while guarding Milwaukee Bucks guard Brandon Knight. The severity of the injury has yet to be revealed, but several reports believe Jennings could miss the remainder of the season — prior to injury, Jennings was playing the best basketball of his career, helping the Pistons creep back into the playoff race; without Jennings, they may be lottery-bound … again.
  • Speaking of injury, after being expected to miss 6-8 weeks with a thumb injury, Portland’s LaMarcus Aldridge surprisingly returned to the floor tonight against the Wizards, leading his Trail Blazers to a win. Without Aldridge, the likelihood of the Trail Blazers missing the playoffs would’ve increased ten-fold, but if Aldridge can sustain a high level of play while avoiding a more serious injury, the Blazers can remain a shoe-in for the playoffs a.k.a. avoiding the Oklahoma City Thunder.
  • With so many recent injuries, here’s a quick recap to keep up:
  • In case you missed it, the All-Star starters were named this past week:
  • Speaking of All-Stars, by not being voted a starter in the 2015 All-Star game, Cavs guard Kyrie Irving will have missed out on $7-10 million due to the Derrick Rose provision that states a player can qualify for the 30% max if he’s named a starter to the All-Star game twice, voted to All-NBA first, second, or third team twice, or named league MVP before his rookie extension kicks in.
  • James Harden is a bad, bad, BAD man (poor P.J. Tucker)

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