Monday Morning Point Guard
Based on the early returns of the Allen Iverson-Chauncey Billups trade, the Denver Nuggets made out like bandits and the Detroit Pistons are checking to see if there is a return policy on the deal.
The Nuggets are unbeaten with Denver native Billups in the lineup, while the Pistons are still waiting for their first victory with Iverson. Okay, you all know I'm kidding. it's only been two games for each player, so it is too soon to truly evaluate the trade.
But if last week's "blockbuster" deal did anything, it showed the rest of the league that it's never too early in the season to try something new. It might even be for the best by giving the teams a full season to develop chemistry before the playoffs. Dallas and Phoenix probably wish that they had Jason Kidd and Shaquille O'Neal, respectively, a little sooner last season.
Elsewhere in the league, the Los Angeles Lakers continue to vanquish everything in their path. They plowed through the Houston Rockets on Sunday, winning 111-82 and improving to 5-0 this season. They've won all of their games by an average of 22.4 points this season.
The Atlanta Hawks (5-0) remained unbeaten by defeating Oklahoma City on Sunday and are tied with the Lakers for the league's best record. Who would've guessed that after two weeks the Hawks would be unbeaten and the San Antonio Spurs would have just one victory?
Tony Parker dropped a double-nickle on Minnesota to keep the Spurs from being all-beaten, then he sprained his ankle during an embarrassing home loss against the Miami Heat. The Spurs are 0-3 at home to start a season for the first time in franchise history, NBA or ABA. And now they will be without Parker and Manu Ginobili for at least two weeks. Tim Duncan is probably the greatest power forward of all time, but this is a tough task even for Timmy.
The locals are still grappling with the Wizards being the only winless team in the NBA. The Los Angeles Clippers ended a six-game losing streak with an 11-point win over Dallas as Baron Davis recorded 22 points with 10 assists. It was the second season in a row that Davis's team lost its first six games before finally winning a game (Golden State did the same thing last season and finished with 48 wins).
Miami's Dwyane Wade expressed some frustration over his role then went out and averaged 30.7 points, 8.3 assists and 7.7 rebounds in three games, including wins over Philadelphia and San Antonio. Amare Stoudemire also had a monster performance, depositing 49 points on Indiana, but his Phoenix teammate, Shaquille O'Neal raised more eyebrows with a 29-point, 11-rebound game against Milwaukee on Saturday.
You also have to give it up for Utah Jazz Coach Jerry Sloan, who won his 1,000th game over the Oklahoma City Thunder on Friday. He is the first coach in NBA history to reach quadruple digits in wins with the same team. Incredible.
The weekly awards are coming . . .
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