The Atlanta Hawks have played solid basketball early on this season. 2nd in the Eastern Conference with a 21-13 record, they are looking to have a better outing this year after their debacle in the Eastern Conference Finals. In 2016, I would like to see a new and improved Kyle Korver. He’s averaging 9.4 points per game and shooting .364 from three which is the lowest output in both categories throughout his tenure with the Atlanta Hawks. Shooting 36% from three is good for any other player but when you compare it to the rest of Korver’s career and how good he shoots, that’s a low number for him. He’s a huge factor in what they like to do offensively especially when it comes to knocking down the three ball, so his production will be necessary going forward.
The Orlando Magic have made quite the turnaround. After consecutive losing seasons since the departure of Dwight Howard, the Magic currently hold a 19-13 record sitting at 5th in the Eastern Conference. They’ve gotten great production from Nikola Vucevic and Evan Fournier has made a case to be named, Most Improved Player of the Year. I would like to see Victor Oladipo return to that player that we saw last season. He averaged 17.9 points per game but that has dropped to 12.3 points per game. Since coming off the bench, his production and efficiency has dropped. For some, accepting a role off the bench is tough to swallow but he must understand that this team needs his play just as much off the bench as they did when he started. He’s a great player with a lot of talent, and it’s time to step things up. The Magic can make some noise in the playoffs if they are all playing at their highest potential.
Like my man Martin said, “the Heat need the old Dragic.” He hasn’t been the player they thought they were getting that was lighting things up for the Phoenix Suns. He’s been struggling behind the three point line, only averaging about one three a game, shooting a percentage of .277 from behind the arc. Miami in totality haven struggled from behind the arc as well. Ranked amongst the bottom of the NBA in 3-pointers made, the Heat are a shooter away from being a major threat to the Cavaliers. Maybe they should try calling up an old friend (*cough Ray Allen cough) to see if he still has it.
There’s no question, the most important thing for the Charlotte Hornets to do in this New Year is to CUT JEREMY LIN’S HAIR. I don’t know what’s running through his head but the hair has to go. It has caused non stop distraction and taken the Hornets out of their game. (This is all sarcasm but I still believe he should cut it.) What Charlotte also needs is Al Jefferson to step up. He’s having one of the worst seasons of his career and if they want to have any shot of being successful going forward, Jefferson is going to have to be apart of it. Battling marijuana issues, Al must get his head right off the court first so that it can reflect on the court as well.
The Wizards have been a shell shock. Predicted prior to the season as one of the best teams in the East, the Wizards have been the complete opposite of that. What they must do is work on trying to keep Bradley Beal on the court. He’s only played 17 games this season due to a stress reaction in his fibula. He has proven to be injury prone throughout his career and it has taken a toll on his team’s success. Beal is a very talented player and the Wizards desperately need him. So to get back up in the win column, they must get Beal back on the court and keep him on the court.