Stephen Curry

Report: Horford one of last All-Stars picked in draft

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Report: Horford one of last All-Stars picked in draft

Celtics forward Al Horford and San Antonio Spurs forward LaMarcus Aldridge were the final two picks of the NBA All-Star draft, according to a report from's Chris Haynes.

In a change from the traditional East-vs.-West format, last month, the Cleveland Cavaliers' LeBron James and the Golden State Warriors' Stephen Curry, the top two All-Star vote-getters, each drafted a team from the 22 other players chosen to play in this year's game, which is Sunday in Los Angeles.

Aldridge was selected last to the team captained by James, while Curry took Horford with the final pick for his team. The order of selection was not officially made public by the NBA, but Haynes reported that Curry acknowledged Friday that he took the Milwaukee Bucks' Giannis Antetokounmpo with his first pick. 

Horford has averaged 13.3 points and 7.8 rebounds in the first 54 games of the season, Aldridge 22.8 points and 8.4 rebounds.


Jayson Tatum is having a better rookie season than Steph Curry


Jayson Tatum is having a better rookie season than Steph Curry

Jayson Tatum joined Kevin Garnett as the only rookie teenager to ever have six blocks and at least three steals in a game Saturday vs the Nets, but it would be irrational to compare him to the Big Ticket.

No, Tatum’s rookie season has actually been more comparable to two-time MVP Steph Curry.

In fact, Tatum is having a much more efficient rookie season than Curry, sporting a 57.1 eFG% compared to Curry’s 53.5 eFG%. The picture becomes a bit clearer when you look at the numbers through the first 43 games of their respective careers.

Stupid, right? Due to his size, position, and ability to take off for a layup from the 3-point line, most people compare Tatum to Curry’s teammate Kevin Durant. While there is some validity to that argument (If Tatum attempted the same amount of shots KD did his rookie year he’d be averaging 25 ppg (KD only scored 20 ppg his rookie year . . .  just saying), the shooting and scoring numbers look more like Curry.

At the end of the day these numbers don’t guarantee Tatum will be a future MVP and/or a four-time scoring champion. However, at this point he’s at least a lock for the Hall of Fame.


Blakely: An early look at some early exits

Blakely: An early look at some early exits

BOSTON – Missouri’s Michael Porter Jr. will undergo back surgery that’s expected to keep him out for the rest of this season, giving him a college career that will likely consist of two points in two minutes of action.
Projected as a potential No. 1 overall pick in next June’s NBA draft, his injury sent shock waves throughout the college basketball landscape as well as among NBA executives, who now must weigh the injury in their evaluation regardless of how well he recovers or even he aces the physical tests he’ll surely undergo leading up to the draft.


You can count the Celtics among those to pay close attention to what’s happening with Porter Jr., a player that may be available to them in June courtesy of the first-round pick from the Los Angeles Lakers (via Philadelphia) that Boston received as part of the Markelle Fultz-Jayson Tatum trade.
As talented as Porter Jr. is, he won’t be the only high draft pick counted on to make an impact at the next level.
In this week’s Starting Five, we’ll take a look at the top five college freshman (most of whom are expected to turn pro and be in the draft in June) as well as MVP candidates; the top backcourts; the top rookies and my top five teams on the rise.

1. Marvin Bagley III, Duke: Has a double-double in four of Duke’s six games this season, averaging 19.0 points and 10.0 rebounds per game.

2. DeAndre Ayton, Arizona: Has impressive numbers, but back-to-back losses by the Wildcats? Not a good look for this future lottery pick.

3. Michael Porter Jr., Missouri: Depending on how his recovery/workouts/physicals go, no shocker if he winds up as the No. 1 pick when all is said and done.

4. Collin Sexton, Alabama: Big-time scorer, Sexton is a tough, tough cover in the half court or in transition.

5. Mohamed Bamba, Texas: 7-footer with a 7-9 wingspan, think Rudy Gobert with better athleticism.

1. Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson, Golden State: NBA champions two of the last three seasons, Curry and Thompson are the gold standard all NBA backcourts are measured against.
2. Chris Paul and James Harden, Houston: The sample size is small, but the three games since Paul’s return have been by an average of 26 points per game which speaks to how well this all-star backcourt has come together.
3. John Wall and Bradley Beal, Washington: Wall’s end-to-end speed coupled with Beal’s elite shooting has made this one of the game’s most deadly backcourt duos.
4. Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan, Toronto: They’re the next best thing backcourt-wise to Wall/Beal in the East, but Boston’s Kyrie Irving and Jaylen Brown are right on their heels.
5. Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum, Portland: You don’t hear a ton about these two because Portland has been a good-but-not-great program that doesn’t garner a ton of attention. But don’t be fooled. Lillard and McCollum are two of the league’s most dynamic scorers.
1. James Harden, Houston: A prolific scorer, Harden leads the NBA in scoring (31.1 points) and assists (9.8) per game while boasting the best record in the West.

2. Kyrie Irving, Boston:  The best player on the team with the best record who has been at his best in the clutch – that’s Kyrie Irving this season.

3. LeBron James, Cleveland: The Cavs are starting to roll up the wins and it is once again due to LeBron James doing LeBron James things.

4. Giannis Antetokounmpo, Milwaukee: The MVP front-runner the first couple of weeks of the season, the Greek Freak is still a load for teams to deal with.

5. Kristaps Porzingis, New York:  Among the NBA’s top-5 in scoring and blocked shots, Porzingis’ biggest achievement has been leading a far more competitive Knicks team than what we’ve seen the past couple of years.

1. Ben Simmons, Philadelphia: A triple-double in the making, his statistics combined with Philly winning make him a no-brainer if he can stay healthy.

2. Jayson Tatum, Boston: His numbers are solid, but he moves to the forefront of those being considered because of his two-way play and his team’s success.

3. Donovan Mitchell, Utah: His 14.3 points leads all rookies who average less than 30 minutes played per game.

4. Kyle Kuzma, Los Angeles Lakers: Only Simmons is averaging more points among rookies than Kuzma (16.8 points per game).

5. Lauri Markkanen, Chicago: The Bulls are bad, but Markkanen’s inside-outside is impressive regardless of how his team has fared this season.

1. Cleveland: With Boston’s loss, the Cavs have the longest current winning streak which stands at six wins in a row.

2. New Orleans: Currently with the seventh-best record in the West, the Pelicans have won seven of their last 10 games.

3. Indiana: Only Cleveland has been hotter than the Pacers, winners of four in a row.

4. Philadelphia: Joel Embiid has the Sixers three games above-.500, trending towards entering league MVP conversation.

5. San Antonio: After 4-4 start, Spurs are 7-3 since and very much in the thick of things out West.