Breakfast Special: Paul George is Kevin Durant 2.0

How is it possible for a guy to average a triple-double for the third straight season—as Russell Westbrook has been doing—and somehow be thought of by near-universal consensus as the second-best player on his own team? The answer, as even a cursory glance at an Oklahoma City Thunder game will tell you, is “because Paul George is making a heck of an MVP case.” PG13 had 47 points, 12 rebounds, and 10 assists, upstaging Westbrook’s record-setting 10th consecutive triple-double (21 points, 14 rebounds, 11 assists) in the Thunder’s 120-111 win over the Portland Trail Blazers Monday night. Westbrook shot 5-of-19 …

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Breakfast Special: LA Finally Beats Boston at Something

The city of Boston has, in recent months, gone to town on the sports teams from the city of Los Angeles. Thursday night on TNT, LA got one back: A regular-season basketball game between a team whose star player tried and failed to trade away all of his teammates and another team that sometimes looks like a Finals contender and sometimes looks like the Knicks. Come to think of it, the Celtics lost to the Knicks at home earlier this season. And this time, Boston lost to LA 129-128 on a buzzer-beater from former Celtic Rajon Rondo: RONDO. GAME. pic.twitter.com/AjG34xhn2u …

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Breakfast Special: Lakers Softer Than Chris Denari’s Water

Pacers fans have for the past 13 years been blessed with the best play-by-play man you’ve probably never heard of, and Chris Denari did his 1,000th broadcast for Fox Sports Indiana (and for those of you in the national audience who don’t get the joke in the headline, Denari is spokesman for a water-softener company in the Hoosier State, a source of affectionate catchphrases from the Pacers faithful.) The team rose to the occasion, giving Denari and his partner Quinn Buckner plenty to talk about as they turned a Kinetico riot hose on the Lakers and sprayed them down to …

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Breakfast Special: Is Basketball OK?

Before we get to the NBA highlights this morning, a moment to call out the single worst Super Bowl ad from a branding perspective in the history of spending millions of dollars on 30 seconds of air time. Pepsi ran an ad in which a customer at a diner orders a Coke, the waitress says “is Pepsi OK?”, and then Steve Carell, Cardi B, and Lil Jon spend 30 seconds ranting about how Pepsi is “better than OK.” Which…you just showed a customer in a restaurant ordering a Coke. You just showed a restaurant practically apologizing for serving your product. …

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Breakfast Special: Thunder Up!

Jeff Van Gundy once went after the obsession basketball fans have with triple-doubles, saying that just because you get 10 of three different categories doesn’t mean you had a better game than the guy who scored 30 but only got five rebounds and five assists. Case in point, the Oklahoma City Thunder, who got a triple-double out of Russell Westbrook (13 points, 13 rebounds, 11 assists) but in a cause where Westbrook had a terrible night shooting (5-of-20) and overall did not play particularly well. No, the reason Oklahoma City pulled off the 118-112 win at home over the Milwaukee …

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Breakfast Special: A Super-Size Russell Westbrook Stat Line

Two conflicting thoughts strike the NBA observer when looking over the box score from the Oklahoma City Thunder’s 122-116 win over the New Orleans Pelicans Thursday night. The first is “wow, Russell Westbrook had 23 points, 17 rebounds, and 16 assists, the guy’s amazing.” The second is “True, but is it even news anymore when Westbrook gets a triple-double?” In 2016-17, Westbrook averaged a triple-double, won MVP, and drew comparisons to Oscar Robertson. In 2017-18, Westbrook averaged a triple-double, and everyone wondered out loud if OKC was Paul George‘s team now and if being a volume counting-stat chaser wasn’t a …

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Breakfast Special: 16 Threes Does Not a Barrage Make, Toronto

The Toronto Raptors beat the Sacramento Kings 120-105 in a dollar-store game where the Raps didn’t have Kawhi Leonard and the Kings didn’t have De’Aaron Fox. Toronto also crowed that they had a “3-point barrage tonight.” They hit 16-of-40. 3-pt barrage tonight @TangerineHoops Game Highlights 📹: https://t.co/gT67vmyo9e pic.twitter.com/UpChVnzNUZ — Toronto Raptors (@Raptors) January 23, 2019 Now, is it really a “barrage” if you hit two more triples as a team than Klay Thompson hit in a game by himself earlier this year? Come back when you make 20 in a game and we’ll talk about a barrage. This was a …

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Breakfast Special: Russell Westbrook, Guitar Hero

Since their improbable win over the Warriors on Christmas Day, the Los Angeles Lakers have looked like the G-League team they are without LeBron James and Rajon Rondo, both of whom are out with injury. The Oklahoma City Thunder beat them 107-100 at Staples Center Wednesday night on national television, powered by Paul George‘s 37 points on 15-of-29 shooting and Russell Westbrook‘s 14-point, 16-rebound, 10-assist triple-double. Plus, there was this brilliant razz of Lance Stephenson after PG13 drew an and-one: Westbrook so petty 😂🤣 pic.twitter.com/E9MhNJ8jd8 — Sports ReUp (@SportsReUp) January 3, 2019 Never mind that Russ shot 3-of-20 from the …

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Breakfast Special: Melo, Thunder Beat Rockets

Carmelo Anthony had a great game for the Oklahoma City Thunder Thursday night. His 1-of-11, two-point, minus-22 performance was the next best thing to the Thunder planting a mole on the Houston Rockets to throw the game so he could give his real team the big win. Accordingly, the Thunder, who don’t have Russell Westbrook until he recovers from his ankle sprain, won 98-80 in an ugly game on national television. Houston shot just ten free throws, making seven of them, and even though they made 50 percent of their two point shots (20-of-40), they were a wretched 26.2 percent …

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Breakfast Special: Golden State Has a Three-Point Problem

The Warriors have a legitimate issue out beyond the three-point arc. Namely, nobody on the team besides Stephen Curry is hitting them with any regularity anymore. Steph is 46-of-89 (51.7 percent!) beyond the arc, draining threes with beautiful and reckless abandon, playing like he wants to hit 500 of them just to future-proof the single-season record (he’s on pace to hit 539, but that would be if he played all 82 games, which we all know he won’t.) The rest of the team? 34-of-121 (28.1 percent.) But on the other hand, the Warriors continue to chug along close to the …

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