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Southeast Division Roundup: Week of 10/16-10/22

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Atlanta Hawks: 1-2

Games:

  • W: 117-111 @Dallas
  • L: 91-109 @Charlotte
  • L: 116-104 @Brooklyn

Injuries: None

The Hawks start their season on a 5 game road trip that has started fairly poorly aside from winning the season opener in Dallas. Atlanta was able to spoil Dennis Smith Jr.’s debut, but this success was short lived, as they were blown out in Charlotte and loss by a dozen to the Nets.

Peachtree Hoops

If any positives can be found in the dumpster fire of a roster, it is Shroeder’s 26.5 points and 6 assists per game, although he did go just 5-22 from the field against Brooklyn. With so many holes, Atlanta is looking to youngsters like Taurean Prince, Deandre Bembry, and John Collins to provide some punch in larger than expected roles. Buckle up Hawks fans, you are in for a long year.

 

Miami Heat: 1-1

Games:

  • L: 109-116 @Orlando
  • W: 112-108 vs. Indiana

Injuries:

  • AJ Hammons: Illness (day to day)
  • Hassan Whiteside: knee bruise (day to day)

 

Hassan Whiteside put up a gargantuan effort in Miami’s loss to Orlando in the season opener, finishing with 26 points and 22 boards, as well as a 33.5 PER. However, Whiteside missed the tight win over the Pacers with a minor knee injury, and is expected to return Monday against the Hawks.

SI.com

Not even a week into the season, and we already have a candidate for Dunk of the Year, as James Johnson claimed his latest victim in Victor Oladipo with an absolute obliteration that left Vic in another dimension. The bouncy Johnson is pretty used to annihilating defenders at this point, so expect more where this came from.

 

Charlotte Hornets: 1-1

Games:

  • L: 90-102 @Detroit
  • W: 109-91 @Atlanta

Injuries:

  • Nic Batum: torn ligament in elbow (4-6 weeks)

Kemba has picked up right where he left off last year, averaging 25 points, 6.5 assists, and 5 rebounds through two games. But in more surprising news, Dwight Howard rattled out a dominant performance in his return to Atlanta, going for 20 points and 15 boards against a Hawks team that he struggled for last year. Its too early to tell if Howard can keep this play up, but don’t be shocked if Dwight has a late career renaissance in Charlotte.

NBA.com

In other news, Jeremy Lamb (seen above) has seen a substantial increase in minutes through the first 2 games this season, seeing 33.5 mpg up from just 18.4 mpg last year. These minutes will decrease once Nic Batum returns to the court in late November or early December, but for now Lamb is making the most of this influx of playing time, averaging 15 points in the two games thus far.

Orlando Magic: 2-1

Games:

  • W: 116-109 vs. Miami
  • L: 121-126 @Brooklyn
  • W: 114-93 @Cleveland

Injuries:

  • Elfrid Payton: strained hamstring (day to day)
  • Aaron Gordon: sprained ankle (day to day)

Perhaps the biggest shocker of the opening week of action was the Magic’s 21 point victory in Cleveland without Elfrid Payton and Aaron Gordon.

But more surprising than the win itself is how the Magic won this ballgame: Three point shooting. The Magic hit 17 of 35 threes in this game after hitting 18 of 33 against the Nets. After three games, they rank 2nd in the NBA in 3 Pointers Made (14.3 per game) and 3 Point Percentage (48.3%). These ludcirous numbers cannot continue at this rate, but this kind of jump is unexpected to say the least from one of the worst three point shooting teams in the league last year.

Orlando Sentinel

Just as astonishing as the three point shooting is the dominance of Nikola Vucevic, who through three games is averaging 27.7 points and 10.7 rebounds for Orlando. Again, don’t expect these audacious stat trends to continue, but they are a good sign that this Magic team could be better than predicted.

 

Washington Wizards: 2-0

Games:

  • W: 120-115 vs. Philadelphia
  • W: 115-113 vs. Detroit

Injuries:

  • Jason Smith: sprained right shoulder (day to day)

After John Wall’s critical comments this summer about “not having a star at the SF spot” Otto Porter Jr. is showing promising signs of taking his game to the next level for the ‘Zards, posting 28/3/9 in a tight win over Detroit on Friday. Expect Porter to continue improving his shot creating ability and establish himself as a clear third option this year.

Sporting News

As far as the Wizard’s abysmal bench goes, Kelly Oubre (seen above) seems to be taking on a larger role this year, playing 32 and 35 minutes against the Sixers and Pistons. Although, it appears this role increase is mainly out of necessity rather than desire for the Wizards, whose bench may as well be replaced by a G-League team. Its a good thing the Wall-Beal-Porter machine looks like a three headed monster that is here to stay.

About Logan Collien

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