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BklynKnicks3
11-12-2012, 12:46 PM
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Baseline Awards 11.12.12: Out of the D'Antoni Blue

By Matt Moore | Senior Blogger
November 12, 2012 4:54 am ET

1 | Comment

Guess who's back? (Getty Images)

The Baseline Awards hand out rewards for exceptional and not so exceptional events and players of the past week. Award rankings are at the end and please watch your step as you exit the ride.

Narratives of the Week

"Phil Jackson will save the Lakers." Well, that one's a bit outdated, huh? Jackson apparently asked for too much to return and take the reins. What's funny is it was never a perfect fit. The reinstallation of the Triangle would have given Steve Nash some room for pick and rolls, would have found a way to integrate him, but in large part still wouldn't have featured him the way Mike D'Antoni's will. And for a Lakers team whose biggest problem has been age and focus, a coach who doesn't motivate particularly strongly and whose last year in L.A. was marked by a defensive downturn may not have saved the day. We'll never know.

"Mike D'Antoni doesn't coach defense." We'll get into this a lot more this week but the Knick under D'Antoni last season were a top-10 defense. He needs a defensive assistant to provide the emphasis, but it's not a given that a D'Antoni team will not defend. Not anymore. (Also having Dwight Howard helps.)

"DeMarcus Cousins is a troublemaker." This one is true and not true. His incident with Sean Elliot, or as I like to call him "The Scourge of NBA League Pass" is an embarrassment for Cousins and the Kings. But it's honestly not a tremendous deal. Cousins overreacted to Elliot's prototypical hyperbole, and there were words exchanged. Big whoop.

Cousins' problems have more to do with how his attitude affects his coaches and teammates than it does rival announcers. He's still brash, still emotional, and still prone to immaturity. But this incident shouldn't be what he's judged for. It's nothing.

Eastern Conference Player of the Week: LeBron James

Only thing holding Carmelo Anthony back here is a 44 percent field goal mark over the past four games. And that's still really good, and exceptional when you consider his scoring load, the Knicks' success and his individual and team defense.

But LeBron. Again.

James averaged 21 points, 11 rebounds, 6 assists this week and that was only a fraction of the way he controlled games. It was another prototypical week for James, who also shot 57 percent from the field. He made plays at both ends and had those long stretches where it seemed like he was the only player on the floor who mattered, especially against Brooklyn and Atlanta.

Honorable Mention: Kyrie Irving

Eastern Conference Team of the Week: New York Knicks

Yup. Still them. The Knicks have only played 4 games, but they couldn't have loooked any more impressive to start the season. Even in a game where their offense wasn't prolific against the Mavericks, their defense showed up. Even without Dirk Nowitzki and Shawn Marion, that's impressive given how the Mavs have been playing. These are great times to be a Knicks fan.

Western Conference Player of the Week: O.J. Mayo

Kobe Bryant's a pretty strong candidate here, at 23-7-6 at 47-39-90. But I have a feeling he wouldn't want it given the team's performances and we'll be talking plenty about Kobe and his old friend from Italy this week, I'm pretty sure.

Meanwhile.. OJAM!

(I call him OJAM because his name is actually Ovinton J'Anthony Mayo. And when I informed my wife of this, she said, "Wait, so his name isn't actually O.J., it's O.J'A.M.... OJAM!" It's stupid, I like it.)

O.J. Mayo averaged 25 points per game this week on 52 percnt from the field and 59 percent from three. This is wholly unsustainable but Mayo has been electric with the newfound freedom of Rick Carlisle's system. He's playing in rhythm and has gotten back to what he showed his rookie season.

Lionel Hollins has been a fantastic coach for Memphis and made nearly every player there much better. Mayo was an exception. It was never a good fit. The early returns in Dallas are striking.

Western Conference Team of the Week: Oklahoma City Thunder

Well, it turns out they're not actually terrible. How about that. The Thunder have outscored their opponents this week by 16 points per 100 possessions and played crushing defense. The competition has been softer but they're still playing at a very high level. After faceplanting coming out of the gate, the Thunder are starting to round back into shape.

Oh, and Kevin Martin is averaging 50-40-90. That helps.

The Mayan Apocalypse Award for WHAT?!

Los Angeles Lakers

The Lakers had the opportunity to bring back the winningest coach in the NBA since Red Auerbach, the legend who brought them five titles, whose system is tried and true and who instantly commands the respect of every player he comes across.

And they didn't get it done.

Whether it was Jim Buss' arrogance over not wanting to give up control or some other power play, it's a shocker that the Lakers, who so often have always managed to find their way to whatever was the best possible outcome now go with plan B.

It's also a shocker that Dwight Howard will go from being coached by one mustache in Stan Van Gundy to another in Mike D'Antoni. And that D'Antoni gets run out of New York by Carmelo Anthony and now lands in Los Angeles with Kobe Bryant and Dwight Howard.


The "Raiders of the Lost Ark" Award for Coaching Their Face Off

East: Doug Collins

A Sixers team still without Andrew Bynum and missing Jason Richardson goes 3-1 including a win over Boston (who is struggling right now but still). Collins' ability to cobble together pieces and make them work is incredibly impressive. His frontcourt rotation right now consists of Thaddeus Young, LaVoy Allen, and Spencer Hawes right now.

West: Vinny Del Negro

If I'm lyin', I'm dyin'. VDN has the Clippers averaging 106.5 points per 100 possessions and giving up just 93.4. That's good for fifth best in the league over the last week and after two random losses including a fluke loss to Cleveland behind Dion Waiters' offensive explosion, have responded with strong wins.

The Horde Award for Team You Should Fear: Memphis Grizzlies

Memphis took out the Warriors in a tough game they tend to lose on the West Coast. Then they dismantled the Heat at home on Sunday, blowing them out.

Memphis at the present time has mixed its tough, hard-nosed defense, (a stellar 92.8 defensive rating in the past four games) with a surprisingly electric offense sparked by their bench unit and new shooter reclamation project Wayne Ellington. They are a dangerous team right now, and you should hope your squad doesn't have them on the schedule in the near future.

Cub Scout Troope Award for Team You Should Not Fear: Orlando Magic

Well, that dream died about as quickly as it began. They are who we thought they were.

Awards Watch

MVP
1. LeBron James: Everything seems almost too easy for him right now.
2. Carmelo Anthony: Leaving no doubt that he's ready to make the leap finally in his career. Through four games.
3. Kobe Bryant: How many points can he score with Mike D'Antoni's offense?
4. Chris Paul: Paul's ability to come into the game late and just completely take it over is unrivaled outside of LeBron. He just dominates in the clutch.
5. Kevin Durant: Welcome back to the list, KD.

ROY
1. Damian Lillard: There's a lot of concern about what happens when teams start to scheme him, but he's been too electric to start to hold back any longer.
2. Anthony Davis: The missed games hurt, but I'd expect him back on top by next week, especially given how he crashed the glass on Friday in his return.
3. Dion Waiters: Made contested jumpers for everyone!
4. Michael Kidd Gilchrist: MKG got where he wanted against the Mavericks and had his breakout performance for his second career win. You can see the good places his career is headed.
5. Jae Crowder: There's just nothing to dislike about the kid's game. He has handle and can hit from range on top of being such a sparkplug.

COY:
1. Mike Woodson: Tough defense, crisp ball movement, Woodson has stunned everyone out of the gate.
2. Lionel Hollins: Gritt Grind now with a little bit of firepower, Hollins has gotten new players to buy in.
3. Gregg Popovich: Ho-hum, the usual.
4. Tom Thibodeau: There isn't a mentally tougher team in the league, and the Bulls are a reflection of Thibodeau.
5. Rick Carlisle: Can't wait to see what this guy can do with a full roster when Dirk gets back.

Honorable mention: Rick Adelman, Vinny Del Negro

6MOY
1. Kevin Martin: Martin has been quietly spectacular. That's how you get a 6MOY award.
2. Wayne Ellington: Shoot this well from the perimeter and score this much against the Heat and you're going to make a big jump. Has fit in beautifully on both ends.
3. Carl Landry: Landry is keeping the Warriors afloat with Bogut out.
4. J.J. Redick: Redick unleashed!
5. Jamal Crawford: Crawford has been splashtacular early on.

DPOY
1. Tony Allen: Junkyard dog gotta eat.
2. Omer Asik: Big man is big.
3. Dwight Howard: Starting to get it together and the results are showing it.
4. Carmelo Anthony: (/Jaw remains dropped.)
5. Andre Iguodala: The Nuggets are winning games where the offense doesn't show up. Iguodala's defense this week on James Harden, Gordon Hayward, and Golden State's guards was the textbook.

LAKobeBryant
11-12-2012, 12:48 PM
Those writers waste their time writing bullish*t trying to predict winners in less than 10 games played?

BklynKnicks3
11-12-2012, 12:49 PM
So early Melo's team is the last undefeated team 4-0. 2nd in mvp(should be first) Leading nba in scoring 4th in dpoy. According to most he doesnt play defense. I told u all he is a top 3 player in the NBA. Just wanted to see how stupid i look right now? Not bad for the 17th best player in the NBA. See what happens when u have a solid team around you

BklynKnicks3
11-12-2012, 12:51 PM
Not stupid at all everything can obv change but i enjoy forcasting what will happen. Only thing this season that has suprised me is what's going on with the lakers. I still think they will be there in the end.

ManRam
11-12-2012, 12:52 PM
I like all three of these writers, and I'm sure they get how stupid it is to be doing this, but it's so stupid to be doing this. Oh well.


So early Melo's team is the last undefeated team 4-0. 2nd in mvp(should be first) Leading nba in scoring 4th in dpoy. According to most he doesnt play defense. I told u all he is a top 3 player in the NBA. Just wanted to see how stupid i look right now? Not bad for the 17th best player in the NBA. See what happens when u have a solid team around you

Well, the FACT of the matter is that he hasn't been a top 3 player in the NBA in quite some time (if ever), and the FACT of the matter is that he hasn't been a great defender ever. Sure, he's doing both of those things now, but suddenly being those things doesn't mean he was those things before.

So no, no one looks stupid now :laugh:

LAKobeBryant
11-12-2012, 12:54 PM
So early Melo's team is the last undefeated team 4-0. 2nd in mvp(should be first) Leading nba in scoring 4th in dpoy. According to most he doesnt play defense. I told u all he is a top 3 player in the NBA. Just wanted to see how stupid i look right now? Not bad for the 17th best player in the NBA. See what happens when u have a solid team around you

Your saying last your knicks team wasn't "solid"? they have the same bench core as last year

Bravo95
11-12-2012, 12:59 PM
wut

29$JerZ
11-12-2012, 01:03 PM
Your saying last your knicks team wasn't "solid"? they have the same bench core as last year

No we don't.

Our bench last season was
Douglas/Bibby/Baron/Fields/Smith/Novak/Jeffries/Jorts/Jordan

This season we have
Prigioni/Smith/Novak/Camby/Sheed/Thomas/Copeland

Much better than last season. Our bench last year was literraly Novak/Smith with flopping from Jeffries and Baron barely being able to walk.

Il Mago50
11-12-2012, 01:20 PM
Complete joke...

How is Kobe even on the MVP list when his team started 1-4, is still 3-4 and those wins are all against the weakest teams in the NBA???

Melo I can understand to some degree but the Knicks will come back down to earth at some point. Chris Paul at this point should be #2 by a mile if not even #1. Lebron has Wade, Bosh, Allen, Battier, Chalmers and Rashard Lewis around him while Paul has carried and orchestrated a young LAC team to the near top of the West.

EnglishJet
11-12-2012, 01:20 PM
I'd definitely have J.R in the 6th man of the year list thus far!

JordansBulls
11-12-2012, 01:22 PM
Complete joke...

How is Kobe even on the MVP list when his team started 1-4, is still 3-4 and those wins are all against the weakest teams in the NBA???

Melo I can understand to some degree but the Knicks will come back down to earth at some point. Chris Paul at this point should be #2 by a mile if not even #1. Lebron has Wade, Bosh, Allen, Battier, Chalmers and Rashard Lewis around him while Paul has carried and orchestrated a young LAC team to the near top of the West.

It should be CP3, Melo, Durant, Lebron in some order as of now and probably will be the top 4

Baller1
11-12-2012, 01:31 PM
Kobe over KD in the MVP race is downright pathetic. Thank god this means nothing though, haha.

ManRam
11-12-2012, 01:39 PM
Meh, I don't mind Kobe being there. He's been tremendous this season, and the team's woes aren't his fault. He's been the best player in the league so far during this very young season.

But I'm always generally more inclined to not treat team success as the be-all end-all, so maybe I'm just off base.

The good thing is, it doesn't matter! Kobe isn't going to sniff 50% shooting this year, let alone 54%!

BklynKnicks3
11-12-2012, 01:43 PM
everything is pretty legit just crawford and jr smith should be 1 and 2 in 6thman so far

29$JerZ
11-12-2012, 01:44 PM
I assume JR Smith isn't on the list because he is logging 34 minutes a game despite coming off the bench.

BklynKnicks3
11-12-2012, 01:54 PM
http://www.sheridanhoops.com/2012/11/11/sheridan-hoops-mvp-rankings-after-week-two/2/

Melo 1 Crawford 8 !!!!!

coryd238
11-12-2012, 02:05 PM
Your saying last your knicks team wasn't "solid"? they have the same bench core as last year

Welcome to PSD, where users spout off inaccurate statements in 90% of their posts.

miller74
11-12-2012, 02:14 PM
They havent played 10 games yet, is this a joke?

meloman1592
11-12-2012, 02:19 PM
No jr smith on the 6th man list? Wtf

meloman1592
11-12-2012, 02:20 PM
Your saying last your knicks team wasn't "solid"? they have the same bench core as last year

Shows how much u know

mgsports
11-12-2012, 02:25 PM
I think Orlando will be 2 in the Southeast but won't make it past the Knicks or Heat to get to Finals.