NBA Stock Watch: Rudy Gobert, Spiral Wolves; Luka Dončić is in the hunt for MVP

It’s officially a new year, so what better time for our weekly Stock Watch, where we check in with the NBA and see who’s moving up and down.

rising: By Luka Doncic MVP work

The Dallas Mavericks roster is, well…not great. The team’s second best player is Christian Wood. His third best … Spencer Dinwiddie? It’s embarrassing, and the Mavericks will lead Bricks for Vic Even without Luka Dončić, he draws, not only playing great, but playing one of the best basketball players in the history of the league.

Luke has three (!) 50-point games in the last 10 days. He’s the only reason they’ve won seven in a row to climb into the top five in the Western Conference standings.

For the season, Dončić is scoring 34.2 points per game on 51.1% shooting! – To go with 8.9 assists and 8.7 rebounds. It became (further) impossible to defend. He might be the league’s best finisher in the paint (he shoots a ridiculous 75 percent at the rim and 55 percent in the paint just three feet out). He is too big for the guards and likes to intimidate them with his sturdy build. Big men can’t hang and bust with her bobs and weaves. He’s a brilliant passer, which means double-teams don’t work and the assist is often penalized.

When he was on the court, the Mavs outscored opponents by 5.1 points per 100 possessions; They were when he sat down improved With 4.4.

Someone give this man a beer!

I don’t know if Luke can go on like this. He plays about 37 minutes per game, and about 10 minutes with the ball in his hands is not only the best in the league, but would be good. Highest ranking in 10 yearsgoes all the way back to publicly available information.

It would be nice if the Mavericks could help him. In the meantime, let’s sit back and enjoy a maestro at the top of his game.

Autumn: Everything and everyone is connected Minnesota Wolves

Even if you think, as most outside of Timberwolves HQ do, that the team’s new president of basketball operations Tim Connelly overpaid Rudy Gobert, I don’t think anyone would hurt Minnesota by adding Gobert. this year The issues surrounding the deal were more about the amount the Wolves parted ways with. If only the three-time Defensive Player of the Year made a 46-win team worse.

Still, it’s the first week of January and the Wolves sit in 12th place in the Western Conference after going six straight without a win against the Denver Nuggets on Monday night.

In other words, if the playoffs started today, it would be in the lottery.

The Gobert deal was a disaster. He’s averaging just 1.9 blocks per 100 possessions, a career low. It does not deter enemy pilots as before. Opponents hit 60% of their shots from the hoop with Gobert nearby. NBA Advanced Stats. In the previous three seasons, this indicator was 50%. Minnesota coach Chris Finch even benched Gobert in the fourth quarter of last week’s game against Miami — after watching Heat guard Gabe Vincent (yes, Gabe Vincent) play a pick-and-roll with Gobert — in favor of fourth-year forward Naz Reid.

And speaking of Naz Reid, here’s what he had to say about his team’s struggles recently.

During his time in Utah, Gobert had a knack for hating his teammates. Apparently, he brought that skill with him to Minnesota. I don’t know for sure, but asking for a lob for every possession and then swallowing half the passes thrown at you probably isn’t a great way to endear yourself to your new teammates.

To make matters worse, the Wolves don’t have their pick this year thanks to the Gobert trade.

We can call this trade one of the worst trades in NBA history.

Ascent: The Warriors‘ already ridiculous roadblocks

So you know how the Warriors win almost every game at home and lose almost every game on the road? Turns out, it doesn’t depend on Steph Curry being there.

Golden State has won four straight at the Chase Center despite Curry being sidelined. This improved their home record to 16-2 this season. On the way they (*banknote checks*) 3-16.

There is no explanation for any of this. Jordan Poole finding his footing helped, but there’s no reason why this shouldn’t translate into an away win as well.

Meanwhile, the rest of the West better hope the Warriors don’t climb into the top half of the West’s playoff standings and gain home-court advantage after Curry’s return.

Fall: The Houston Rockets

Forget “The Process” or even what the Oklahoma City Thunder have done in recent years. No team has been more terrible with their tank than this current iteration of the Rockets.

It’s not just that they stink — although they do (10-27, NBA-worst; 29th offense, 28th defense) — or that they’ve been stinking for the third straight year. This is how they smell.

A good example: They’re giving up a league-worst 26.1 passer rating, which, if sustained, would surpass last year’s record.

What’s interesting is that the Rockets aren’t even playing fast — they’re last in offensive possession percentage in transition — meaning it’s simply the result of poor, lazy play.

Or, to sum it up better, here’s Rockets veteran Eric Gordon after a recent loss:

rising: Domantas Sabonis‘All-Star feud

I still don’t agree with the Kings decision to release Tyrese Haliburton, but Domantas Sabonis has been spectacular this season. He averages 18.6 points, 12.4 rebounds and 6.6 assists, leading the league. He and De’Aaron Fox were a dynamic duo that owned the longest playoff drought in the American majors – 19-16 – and had Sacramento looking like a playoff team and wowing opponents.

Also worth noting: Sabonis is playing with a broken thumb, which he decided to do instead of having surgery in the middle of the season. That should be worth a few votes too!

fall: Trae Young’s star credentials

How’s it going in Atlanta, you ask?

Remember, McMillan is the guy who replaced the other guy (Lloyd Pierce) that Young was tired of. Oh, and speaking of Young, guess what he’s hitting from the field this season? The answer is 41.5%. Deep down? A whopping 31%.

He’s obviously an incredibly talented and powerful offensive weapon (27.4 points and 9.9 assists per game are no joke), but he’s also one of the league’s worst defensive players, an ineffective shooter, and a ‘clear problem’ . coaches.

At some point, it’s fair to wonder if the value on the ground is commensurate with its stature.

Yaron Weitzman is an NBA writer and contributor for FOX Sports Rising to the top: The Philadelphia 76ers and the most daring feat in professional sports history. Follow him on Twitter @YaronWeitzman.

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