13 Rules: Random NBA Thoughts

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The game we love started with 13 rules. Incredibly, most of these rules that were published in 1892, are still applicable today! Read the original rules for Basket Ball (as it was called then) here.

  1. The whole discussion on minutes played per game is interesting. If you go all the way back to the 51-52 season when Paul Arizin averaged 44.53 mpg and look at today you realize the number of minutes played by the top minutes player in the league has reduced by about seven minutes per game. Last year Pascal Siakam led the league at 37.4 mpg. Keep in mind up until the mid 2010s team played three nights a row and four games in five nights. The NBA doesn’t schedule this practice anymore. Teams also used to fly commercial, now they fly charter. The schedule maker has also reduced the amount of back to backs teams play.
  2. As part of the minutes police, please check out the minutes LeBron James has played over the last four games. After starting the season playing twenty-eight minutes in game one, he has played one hundred fifty minutes. That’s over 37 minutes per game. I know there was talk about reducing his minutes this year but have the Lakers figured out winning means they need more LeBron. Injuries from overuse be damned.
  3. Check out Dallas’ start, they are 4 and 0. Is it a coincidence that Kyrie Irving has missed two of those games?
  4. If you haven’t heard of Jalen Duren, you are about to! Duren is only 19 years old and the 6’10” big on the Detroit Pistons who is off to a great start. Though he missed last nights game with an ankle problem, he is averaging 15.5 points per game and 13.3 rebounds. I know the sample size is small, four games, but it is something to watch. Btw, in his fourth game against Chicago he played only 23 minutes because he was injured. If you take that game away, he’s averaging over 15 rebounds a game. I’ll repeat he’s only 19.
  5. Donovan Mitchell is a fascinating player to watch. There are nights where he is virtually unstoppable. The question to ask though is why don’t any of his teams go far in the playoffs.
  6. One of the most difficult things in the NBA is to put two ball dominant players on the same team and make it work. It took time for Boston’s Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum to figure it out and neither is a point guard. The latest team trying to figure it out is the Atlanta Hawks with Trae Young and Dejounte Murray.
  7. Watching Houston play this year is so much different than last year. They seem to care about defense and move the ball offensively. The combination of players Fred VanVleet, Dillon Brooks and Jeff Green in the locker room and Ime Udoka‘s coaching has been big. I know people may say they are 1-3 but if you watch them you realize they are competing.

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