Player(s) of the Night: DeAndre Jordan and Kevin Durant

February here in New York is brutally cold but Kevin Durant and DeAndre Jordan were the polar opposite of cold tonight. Both had jaw-dropping evenings.

NBA: Orlando Magic at Los Angeles Clippers

Let’s start with DeAndre. The struggling Clippers went into a pivotal conference match-up against the Mavericks and came out with a dominating victory. Mainly because of DeAndre Jordan’s insane 22 point, 27 rebound night. He also chipped in 3 blocks, continuing to help his Defensive Player of the Year case. Out of the 27 rebounds, a crazy 11 were on the offensive end, which was only 1 less rebound than Dallas’ leader Chandler Parsons who had 12 total. DeAndre hasn’t missed a game in 3 seasons and continues to play great for the Clips. He even hit 6 of 9 free throws, which is amazing for the big fella who shoots 39.6%

1 KD

Kevin Durant is not human and he reminded us just that versus the Nuggets. He got scorching hot during the second quarter hitting four 3’s and continued to dominate in the second half. He ended with 40 points on 13-19 shooting, including seven 3’s which is a new career high for the Slim Reaper. KD’s been in and out of the lineup all year with injuries, but not many players in the league can be rusty and still score 40 points on 19 shots only. The Thunder are now 16-9 with KD in the lineup, 11-16 without. Kevin Durant is back and ready to get the Thunder into the playoffs. Would OKC not be the scariest 8 seed ever?

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Facets Player(s) of the Night: Houston Cougars / Rajon Rondo

1HOUSTON

Down 31-6 with 13:58 left? Nothing the Houston Cougars couldn’t handle against the University of Pittsburgh Friday during the Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl. 

Houston recovered two onside kicks, scored three touchdowns and a two-point conversion all under two minutes too win the game in incredible fashion. They did all this with an interim head coach, might I add.

Greg Ward Jr. owned the fourth throwing three touchdowns and the game winning two point conversion. He lead one of the more improbable comebacks in bowl history and it was enough to land them a spot as co-player of the night.

1RONDOMAVS

Our second player of the night was Rajon Rondo. His return to Boston was, well, great. He scored Dallas’ first ten points, a career-high 15 first quarter points and ended with a season high 29.

In an emotional return, Rajon stole the show. Hitting a career best five three pointers and not only did he score a season best he also chipped in five assists and six rebounds.

Dallas is now 5-2 with Rajon in the lineup. They’re quickly trending towards one of, if not THE favorites in the Western conference and nights like these make that believable.

Cuban Does it Again: Nets Rajon Rondo

RONDO MAVS

Rajon Rondo and Josh Powell are the newest members of the Dallas Mavericks as they were traded for Jameer Nelson, Brandon Wright, Jae Crowder and two draft picks; a first rounder in 2015 and a second in 2016.

A lot of skepticism around the NBA if Dallas was truly a championship contender was answered when owner Mark Cuban made a splash and got an elite point guard. An elite starting five now including Rajon is exactly what Dallas needed. A pass happy ball handler on a team full of players who can put the ball in the basket.

In 2010, when Dallas won the championship, Dallas greatly benefited from he play of their point guard. Specifically Dirk who had one of his best offensive shooting seasons of his career. Rondo at this point of his career is a far superior than Kidd was. He’s younger and more athletic and he’s a better passer than Kidd ever was in Dallas.

I fully expect Dallas to be a contender in daunting Western Conference. I’m slightly worried about depth of their bigs losing Wright, but there starting five will compensate for a lot once Rajon learns the offense.

Dallas Mavericks starting five

PG – Rajon Rondo

SG – Monta Ellis

SF– Chandler Parsons

PF – Dirk Nowitzki

C – Tyson Chandler

NBA 2014-2015 Predictions

We will give our predictions for both divisions, conferences, playoffs and personal awards.

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Eastern Conference

Atlantic                                                                                    

  1. Toronto Raptors                                                                
  2. New York Knicks                                                                 
  3. Brooklyn Nets                                                                    
  4. Boston Celtics                                                                    
  5. Philadelphia 76ers

Central                                                                                     

  1. Chicago Bulls                                                                     
  2. Cleveland Cavaliers                                                           
  3. Indiana Pacers
  4. Detroit Pistons
  5. Milwaukee Bucks

Southeast

  1. Washington Wizards
  2. Charlotte Hornets
  3. Miami Heat
  4. Atlanta Hawks
  5. Orlando Magic
Conference Standings
  1. Chicago Bulls
  2. Cleveland Cavaliers
  3. Toronto Raptors
  4. Washington Wizards
  5. Charlotte Hornets
  6. Miami Heat
  7. Atlanta Hawks
  8. New York Knicks

Western Conference

Northeast

  1. Portland Trailblazers
  2. Oklahoma City Thunder
  3. Denver Nuggets
  4. Utah Jazz
  5. Minnesota Timberwolves

Pacific

  1. Los Angeles Clippers
  2. Golden State Warriors
  3. Phoenix Suns
  4. Sacramento Kings
  5. Los Angeles Lakers

Southwest

  1. San Antonio Spurs
  2. Houston Rockets 
  3. Dallas Mavericks
  4. New Orleans Pelicans
  5. Memphis Grizzlies 
Conference Standings
  1. Los Angeles Clippers
  2. San Antonio Spurs
  3. Golden State Warriors
  4. Portland Trailblazers
  5. Oklahoma City Thunder
  6. Houston Rockets
  7. Phoenix Suns
  8. Dallas Mavericks

We both agreed that the Pelicans have a chance to overtake Dallas in their division and in the conference standings.

Player Awards

  • MVP

@The_Real_Grande1) Steph Curry 2) LeBron James 3) Derrick Rose

@jessedoyle7: 1) LeBron James 2) Derrick Rose 3) Anthony Davis

  • Rookie of the Year

@The_Real_Grande: 1) Jabari Parker 2) Nerlens Noel 3) Andrew Wiggins

@jessedoyle7: 1) Jabari Parker 2) Nerlens Noel 3) Andrew Wiggins

  • 6th Man of the Year

@The_Real_Grande: 1) Isaiah Thomas 2) Jamal Crawford 3) Ryan Anderson

@jessedoyle7: 1) Jamal Crawford 2) Ryan Anderson 3) Doug McDermott

  • Comeback Player of the Year

@The_Real_Grande: 1) Derrick Rose 2) Al Horford 3) Kobe Bryant

@jessedoyle7: 1) Derrick Rose 2) Kobe Bryant 3) Al Horford

  • Defensive Player of the Year

@The_Real_Grande: 1) Anthony Davis 2) Joakim Noah 3) LeBron James

@jessedoyle7: 1) Anthony Davis 2) Joakim Noah 3) DeAndre Jordan

  • Coach of the Year

@The_Real_Grande: 1) Tom Thibodeau 2) Doc Rivers 3) Gregg Popovich

@jessedoyle7: 1) Steve Kerr 2) Tom Thibodeau 3) David Blatt