Myles Ma is here every Thursday with the NBA Stock Report. Draw a circle around him on Google +, or follow Myles on Twitter, @LameMyles.
People are talking about tanking? About division records? Lottery picks? Is every game being scrutinized to death? It must be the final month of the NBA season, when the cream rises to the top and the rest of the milk turns rancid on purpose.
This week’s NBA Stock Report, in which I rate each team as a ‘buy’ ‘sell’ or ‘hold’ is based on play through Tuesday night.
Record: 29-24 (4-6 in last 10)
Philadelphia caught the inconsistency bug at a crucial point in the season, losing their hold on the Atlantic Division in the process. Thanks to the wonky NBA seeding system, they went from fourth to the seventh.
The Sixers suffer from a lack of inside scoring. They’re at the bottom of the league in free throws per field goal attempts.
Luckily, they have some soft matchups over the last month of the season, and Boston isn’t too far ahead. The division is far from lost.
Record: 17-34 (1-9 in last 10)
There’s been a lot of talk of tanking lately, thanks to the efforts of HoopIdea. But I don’t think that’s what is happening in Cleveland.
Bryon Scott seems genuinely concerned about his team’s psyche, and it seems like the Cavaliers have checked out. It’s probably for the better; the players who are quitting now aren’t part of the long-term picture in Cleveland, who could use another good draft pick to put some more talent around Kyrie Irving.
Tristan Thompson can start working early on constructing some semblance of an outside game. He’s shooting just 24% on jumpers.
Record: 7-44 (1-9 in last 10)
Like much of America over the past couple of days, Charlotte is putting its money on the lottery. The Bobcats’ odds of landing Anthony Davis are a bit better than winning the Mega Millions, but it’s still not a sure thing, despite the Bobcats’ best efforts to be a terrible, terrible basketball team.
I don’t watch a lot of college ball, but if Davis is as good as everyone says he is, he could be the best player in Charlotte, which is sort of like winning the Republican presidential nomination. Politics aside, Charlotte has a lot of money and they should throw it at some good players, or that famous unibrow will be locked into a ‘V’ for much of next season.
Anyway, there are still games to be played for Charlotte before Davis suits up for anyone, but if the Bobcats persevere, they should reach their goal of being the worst team in the league. Godspeed!
OKLAHOMA CITY THUNDER
Record: 40-13 (7-3 in last 10)
Aside from a hiccup against Memphis, the Thunder are surging into the final month of the season. The game has inspired a lot of agita from sportswriters and fans, but the reason it feels like a mirage to me is how well O.J. Mayo has played.
I don’t think the Grizzlies will get that from Mayo every night of a seven-game series—if it even gets to that point against the Thunder, who won the previous three games this season. So let’s cool out, Oklahoma City.
Kevin Durant and James Harden are still ruthlessly efficient scorers, Serge Ibaka is still one of the best rebounders and shot blockers in the game, and even with all that, Russell Westbrook can be the best player on the court, as long as the voices in his head don’t talk too loud.
GOLDEN STATE WARRIORS
Record: 20-32 (2-8 in last 10)
So yeah, Mark Jackson didn’t turn this into a defensive team.
I don’t get why Andris Biedrins doesn’t get more burn. He’s been hurt and he’s a liability on offense, but he’s one of the better shot blockers and rebounders on a team that badly needs contributions in those areas.
Here’s how I did last week:
Knicks – Last week’s rating: Sell (25-25), 2-2 since
Bulls – Last week’s rating: Buy (40-11), 2-2 since
Wizards – Last week’s rating: Sell (11-38), 1-3 since
Jazz – Last week’s rating: Hold (27-23), 1-3 since
Spurs – Last week’s rating: Buy (34-14), 3-0 since