Lovers of basketball look forward to the seasons probably even more intensely than football enthusiasts. Not only are they entertained and thrilled by their favorite players’ moves and stunts, but they also look out for the biggest surprises and disappointments in each playoff.
A few of the teams and players pull major surprises while others perform dismally to the chagrin of their fans. Here are a few of the biggest surprises and disappointments as brought to you by Valkyrie online.
James Harden and Mike D’Antoni: The Dynamite Duo
After a rather disappointing previous season, fans were not very sure about James Harden being paired up with Mike D’Antoni. In theory, the pairing looked great and had the makings of a successful partnership. However, memories of the season before made fans a little doubtful.
Harden proved the skeptics wrong when he scored an average of 28.8 points and an enviable number of rebounds in 17 games. They may have forgotten that Harden has the skills. In addition, D’Antoni made the game very easy for him and Harden was therefore able to sustain his numbers through excellent performance.
The Unbelievable King James
Over the years, LeBron James has proven to be a basketball powerhouse. James will pull off mega surprises such as 23.6 points, 8.4 rebounds, 1.1 assists and 9.7 assists in his 14th season. He may not pull spectacular moves during the regular season, but that is no reason to dismiss him. He has the numbers to prove himself.
He was especially in tune with his Cavaliers teammates and was able to carry his team effortlessly to several amazing wins. The Cavaliers were able to earn themselves a 13-3 record which is the third-best point differential in the NBA league. Moreover, they broke the record with their 3-pointers. James’s game has been getting increasingly better with time.
The Spurs Cannot be Put Down
They may no longer have their star players such as Tim Duncan but the Spurs are a team to reckon with. Players such as Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili are said to not be the dynamos they used to be but the team is still up there with the best of them.
The Spurs hold a record of 14.4 points which is the third-best in the league. They have a valuable player in Kawhi Leonard who gets increasingly better wherever he is on the floor. He continues to ensure that the team remains relevant and ahead in the league scoring an average of 21.2 points per game.
His shooting may have gone down to 46-2% from 50.6 but he is still in the league of the best together with legends such as Harden, LeBron James as well as Kevin Durant. With such a player on the team, the Spurs will always be winners.
The Biggest Disappointments
Maverick fans have had little to be excited about where their team is concerned. Despite efforts from players such as Harrison Barnes and Wesley Matthews, the Mavericks simply could not seem to hack their playoffs.
Matthews was not in his best form after tearing his Achilles and other teammates such as Deron Williams, Barea and Nowitzki have had their fair share of injuries which was quite the disadvantage for Mavericks. They ended the season at the last place with a 3-13 record which was quite disappointing.
The Jazz Can’t Shake off Injuries
The Jazz has been plagued by injuries which seem to single out their key players. This has made a team that has the potential to top NBA rankings to fall far behind. Players such as Hill, Hayward and Favors could not play a number of games which really affected the team’s performance.
Despite dismal or extraordinary performances, it is not uncommon to find any team on the winning or losing end. Issues such as injuries are difficult to avoid. The NBA league can therefore pull surprises on any team.