How the hell did Lance Stephenson, who can't seem to stay healthy and was just on a 10 day contract, get $12M from the Pacers? What a strange signing.
I was disappointed this didn't happen after Charlotte. He was really good in Indiana (aleshemsky will atest to that), it always made sense to give him another shot. Contract is funny though lol. Player option 3rd year too
I'd say that was impressive were it not for the fact that the Rockets had 39 free throw attempts last night to the Warriors 16. All in all the Rockets scored 23 more points at the free throw line than the Warriors. I'm sorry but that's just not an accurate representation of the gameflow. (Also the Warriors only shot 26% from 3 point range themselves so it wasn't a great night for them there either)
NBA officials need to start looking for the Harden 'headbob'. He gets more calls than I can count each game from that motion and more times than not it wasn't a foul to begin with. Much like NBA officials are told to watch guys like Varejao, Dellevedova, Draymond , Boogie, etc. the officials need to be on the look out for Harden when he drives. He's an exceptional driver to the bucket but he simply isn't fouled as many times as he receives calls. This isn't just a 'superstar' treatment call, it's officials simply being fooled almost everytime he throws his head back.
Harden averages 11 free throw attempts per game and 9.3 points per game from the line. If you took away points from the free throw line Steph is outscoring Harden this year, 20.8 points per game to 20.0. And look, of course Harden deserves credit for drawing contact exceptionally well, but he's being rewarded for essentially flopping much of the time. Do we really think this guy gets fouled more than twice as often when he drives to the hoop than Steph? Or John Wall? Or nearly twice as much as Kawhi? From what I've seen, it doesn't seem so.
Edit: for the record, I am still of the opinion Harden's the MVP frontrunner at the moment. I just don't think any player should be rewarded so heavily for being good at embellishing contact in the lane.
He gets fouled more than those guys cause he's a master at making sure he gets calls. He'll throw his head back sometimes, other times he'll purposely tie his arms up with the defender, go up for a shot right when the defender starts reaching or hand-checking, etc. I just don't think the other players put so much work in to attempting to draw fouls. And unless they're going to start officiating more loosely, there's no reason for Harden to stop trying to draw them. Last night's reffing was bad, but he's not often getting calls just cause he throws his head back - refs are way smarter than that.