Around the NBA in 24 Seconds
by Robert Ferringo and Nolan Sinclair - 12/01/2008
Right now the Utah Jazz are THE team that no one wants to see when they are fully healthy. But the question is, will this team ever get healthy?
Utah is 11-7 and at one point this season they have been without one or both of their All Stars, Deron Williams and Carlos Boozer. ON top of that, injuries to Andrei Kirilenko, Matt Harpring, Kyle Korver, and Mehmet Okur have rippled through the trainer's room. All told, the Jazz have had only Williams and Boozer together for one game, and have had no more than four of those six together at one point.
Oh yeah, did I mention they still average 100 points a game?
This Jazz team has been an inspiration for many as they have battled through tough times and they still manage to come out on top of .500. Well, kind of. I have to say that I'm actually more stunned that the rest of the NBA can't beat the Jazz bench.
With all of this said, we will see just how good this Utah team is as they embark on a difficult month of basketball games. Throughout December the Jazz will be on the road for nine of their 15 games including five in a row just before Christmas. Utah will go on the road to face Phoenix, Detroit, Boston and Houston all this month and it will be interesting to see how oddsmakers treat this team and their rotating roster of stars.
They are injured, but I am healthy. And now it's time for 24 Seconds Around the NBA.
24. Kobe Bryant scored 12 points in a win over the New Jersey Nets and the Lakers still won 120-93. Wow! This team is scary good. The only thing more impressive than that last week was Stephen Curry of Davidson being held to zero points and his team still winning by 30 in the college ranks.
23. As a favorite Cleveland has covered spreads of 12, 11.5, 15.5, eight, and seven in the last week to improve their NBA best 13-4 ATS mark. Right now the oddsmakers just can't inflate their lines high enough, but I still think the bubble will burst in the near future.
22. Keeping with the Cavs, I find it interesting that almost simultaneous with their winning streak was the day that LeBron found out he has a chance to go play in New York, and maybe with another Olympian.
21. Note to Terry Porter:
Dear Mr. Porter, I know that you enjoy watching defensive-minded teams play basketball, as do I, but your team is about to have a mutiny. Amare Stoudemire is leading the peanut gallery as he wants to be in a run-and-gun offense in order to showcase his talent. I am not saying which style is better, but if one considers that Phoenix was one of the best teams in basketball by pushing the tempo you might want to consider changing back to the fast pace. Oh yeah, Phoenix is 8-0 when scoring over 100 points this season, just something to think about.
20. An NBA source said the disappointing Heat have been heating up their efforts to move four-time All-Star forward Shawn Marion, who is making $17.8 million in the final year of his contract. This is according to the Boston Globe. Considering he was the centerpiece of the Shaq deal from Miami's perspective you have to wonder about who is going to be held accountable in the front office.
19. Zach Zarba and Mike Callahan have continued their "over" trend as they are now 18-6 combined versus the total. Courtney Kirkland must've felt left out as he is now 10-3 versus the total.
18. Larry Brown has done absolutely nothing to help the Charlotte Bobcats become a better basketball team. However, he has helped Hornets backers as they are 10-6 ATS thus far this season. This team has covered four straight heading into Monday's action and has been a very live dog.
17. The L.A. Lakers and the Cleveland Cavaliers are both outscoring their opponents by more than 10 points a game. It looks as though we might be on a crash course for Kobe versus LeBron in the NBA Finals. My apologies to the Boston Celtics.
16. Along the same lines as the Charlotte Bobcats is the Oklahoma City Thunder. Even though they are 2-16 SU, they are a respectable 9-9 ATS. Just goes to show you that even the awful teams have value somewhere and that we should look to get on this team if we see signs of improvement on the court.
15. Golden State and the N.Y. Knicks went over the set total of 226 by 37 points on Saturday night. It was a fun game to watch. At no point did either team play any defense. The only reason Golden St. lost is they missed seven dunks. Yes, SEVEN. Had they not shanked said dunks they would have won the game 139-138.
14. According to the Chicago Tribune, the Bulls are interested in Chris Kaman. As of now, it seems the Clippers want to see how it works with Kaman, Zach Randolph and Marcus Camby. Two things that could sour the deal are whether or not the Bulls have anything the Clippers want, and Kaman's overall health. I have a buddy that would love it if the Bulls got Kaman. He is screaming, literally screaming for Chicago to get some sort of post presence outside of that maniac Joakim Noah, and the human chin beard Drew Gooden.
13. The 'under' trend has almost come to a complete stop as the difference between 'over' and 'under' games are now 123-120 against the total. However, there have been 14 overtime games, without those games the record would be 111-118 against the total.
12. The L.A. Clippers have played 16 games up to this point in the season and they are already 11 games out of first place. Are you serious Clip-joint, let's get it together!
11. The New Jersey Nets and their band of misfits are a respectable 8-7 SU and tied for second in the Atlantic Division. Currently, that is good for the sixth spot in the Eastern Conference. Even more respectable is the fact that they are 9-6 ATS.
10. I know some of these are from last season, but enjoy the top 40 dunks of 2008.
9. Weekly Syracuse Orange Report: Now 6-0 with road wins over Kansas and Florida, both of whom were ranked.
8. There is not one team in the NBA Central Division with a losing ATS record. Surprisingly, the Detroit Pistons have the worst ATS record at 8-8. Cleveland and Milwaukee are a combined 25-10-1 ATS.
7. Tony Brown and James Capers are the exact opposite of Zarba, Callahan, and Kirkland. Brown and Capers are a combined 6-20 against the total thus far this season.
6. At the beginning of the year I told you how the Houston Rockets were like an ER waiting room, and now I have been proven right. Paging Dr. James Andrews, Dr. James Andrews, you are needed in surgery. It isn't definite yet, but it looks like El Busto - Tracy McGrady - will be headed under the knife.
5. The Atlanta Hawks were 6-1 S.U., and 6-1 ATS with Josh Smith and then he went down with an ankle injury. He should be back this Wednesday versus Memphis.
4. David Lee is my new hero. White Men Can Jump. This is one of the 97 dunks in the Knicks/Warriors game.
3. If you like to wager on the NBA money lines know that away favorites are hitting at a 70 percent clip.
2. Away underdogs are 95-73-2 ATS thus far this season, good for 57 percent winners. This compared to home teams being 108-136-3 ATS, which is only good for 44 percent winners.
1. Check back next week for more Around the NBA in 24 Seconds.