Breakfast Special: Russell Westbrook’s Triple-Digit Triple-Doubles

Russell Westbrook and the Oklahoma City Thunder are well on their way to topping last year’s 47-35 record, sitting fourth in the West at 41-29, three back in the loss column from Portland with 12 games to go. Westbrook just notched his 100th triple-double of his career, scoring 32 points on 12-of-20 shooting, dishing 12 assists, and hauling in 12 boards in the Thunder’s 119-107 win over the Atlanta Hawks Tuesday night. Oklahoma City hit 16-of-35 from three-point land, 45.7 percent, turning the ball over just seven times. But a win over a tanking team doesn’t make much entertainment. Triple …

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The Pacers’ Tough Schedule Is Their Best Hope

Tuesday night, the Indiana Pacers beat the Philadelphia 76ers on the road 101-98, doing this despite the referee crew being composed of Rocky Balboa, Benjamin Franklin, and the Phillie Phanatic. This follows a win Sunday night in Boston that brings the Pacers’ record against current would-be Eastern Conference playoff teams to 13-9. They are 17-7 against non-playoff teams in the East; those splits in the West are 2-9 for playoff teams and 8-3 for non-playoff teams. The Pacers also have a brutal schedule remaining; they play nine of their remaining 14 games against current playoff teams, including two against the …

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Breakfast Special: Panic Time in San Antonio

It wasn’t long ago that the San Antonio Spurs were the solid third seed in the Western Conference, a team that even without Kawhi Leonard looked like they were well on their way to a 19th straight 50-win season. As of this writing, the Spurs are no longer a playoff team. The Rockets, behind 28 points on 6-of-17 shooting from James Harden (yes, really; he was 14-of-14 from the line), beat San Antonio 109-93 to take their 19th win in their last 20 games. Houston has a reputation, and a deserved one, for living and dying by the three-pointer, and …

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Breakfast Special: A Worthy, Deserving 3 Seed in the Eastern Conference

Say hello to your new second-round opponent for the Boston Celtics in the playoffs. It’s the same foe the Celtics lost to on Sunday: The Indiana Pacers. Behind 27 points on 10-of-20 shooting from Victor Oladipo and 19 points on 8-of-13 to go with 10 rebounds for Myles Turner, the Pacers, who nearly watched Bojan Bogdanovic choke away the game by reaching for a loose ball that, had he simply let it go out of bounds, would’ve secured an Indiana victory, nonetheless triumphed 99-97 to split the season series at two games apiece. Kyrie Irving missed the second half with …

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Breakfast Special: LeBron 1, Denver 1

LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers faced the Denver Nuggets last week, falling 126-117 at home and jeopardizing their hold on third place in the East. Wednesday, the Cavs went to Denver and got even, consolidating their hold on third and sinking the Nuggets out of the West top eight entirely. Cleveland won 113-108 behind 39 points, 10 rebounds, and eight assists from the King, who shot 15-of-25 from the field in the process. Denver turned the ball over 21 times to Cleveland’s 10, and it was a terrible waste of a great game from Nikola Jokic, who had 36 …

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Indiana Pacers By the Numbers

The Indiana Pacers are 37-27, seeded fourth in the Eastern Conference, just half a game behind a Cleveland Cavaliers team over which they hold the tiebreaker should the teams finish with identical records. For a team that projected for 30 wins, it’s a revelation. And there are some fun numbers out there worth highlighting, so just for fun this week, we’ll pull a few fun facts about your on-pace-for-47-win Pacers: Victor Oladipo Vs. Paul George Oladipo, counting stats, 2018: 24.0 points, 5.4 rebounds, 4.2 assists, 2.2 steals (leads the league), 47.7 FG%, 37.1 3PT%. George, counting stats, 2017: 23.7 points, …

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Breakfast Special: Never the Clippers’ Day

The Los Angeles Clippers have been the whipping boy of the 8 seed in the Western Conference. Fighting for their playoff lives, just when they get a chance to consolidate a position and move forward, they run face-first into Anthony Davis and his 41 points in the Pelicans’ 121-116 win at Staples Center. The Pelicans, left for dead after DeMarcus Cousins got hurt, have now won nine in a row to go to 37-26, just one game back of Portland (!) for the 3 seed out west. Davis went 17-of-31 from the field in this one, while Jrue Holiday scored …

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The Brooklyn Nets are screwed for a long time.

The Brooklyn Nets famously got fleeced by the Boston Celtics in 2013 in one of the most lopsided trades in NBA history. In exchange for a way-past-his-prime Kevin Garnett and the short-term rental of Paul Pierce, Brooklyn gave up three prime first-round draft picks, the last of which just got sent during last year’s offseason to the Cleveland Cavaliers for Kyrie Irving. The Celtics are a powerhouse, fresh off an Eastern Conference Finals appearance and well-positioned to make another one as the No. 2 team in the East, and they’ve done this even as the biggest free-agent acquisition the franchise …

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Breakfast Special: LeBron With A Little Help From His Friends

This season, LeBron James has been out on an island in Cleveland, putting up one of the better statistical seasons of his career, especially his post-Miami career, while getting nothing from his teammates and having to win games by himself. Monday night against Detroit, LeBron had his usual mind-blowing game, with 31 points on 11-of-17 shooting and seven each of rebounds and assists, but this time he got some help. Larry Nance Jr. had 22 points on 9-of-15 to go with 15 rebounds and two steals, while Detroit happily obliged the Cavs by shooting 39.1 percent from the field despite …

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Breakfast Special: March Forth, Eastern Conference Confusion

Sunday’s NBA games were a smorgasbord of tanking teams, pretenders losing gimme games to contenders, and two shocking Eastern Conference results that shook up the playoff picture in one heck of a way… Your New Home-Court Heroes The Pacers went into Washington, where as the fourth of March opened, Indiana would, if the playoffs started on Sunday, have been playing a Game 7. The Pacers left Washington in a position where, if the playoffs started on Monday, they would have played a Game 6. Myles Turner scored 12 points and grabbed 13 rebounds, Victor Oladipo scored 33 points on 11-of-20 …

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