What I Saw, where Luol did his best ‘Melo impersonation

Just 3 games on the schedule today, and here’s what happened:

Portland 98, Chicago 110: Well, quite a performance from Luol Deng in this one, going for a career-high 40 points, while shooting just 14-19, 3-5 and 9-11. Derrick Rose added 16 points and 13 assists as the Bulls handed the Blazers their first loss of the season. According to JS over at NBA.com, the Blazers are 8th in the league defensively, allowing 96.7 points per 100 possessions, yet they allowed Chicago to torch them for 61% in this game, while only making 41% of their own attempts. LMA did have 33/9 for the Blazers, but he didn’t get much help, and Portland didn’t make a three in 14 attempts.

Toronto 108, Sacramento 111: The Raptors threw this game away, leading by 11 at half time and 8 going into the fourth, before the Kings outscored them 33-22 in the final frame. Tyreke did his thing, 23 points, 7 rebounds, 5 assists, while getting to the rim with ease. DMC chipped in with 16/4 on 6-10 from the floor and 4-4 from the line. Bargs was solid, jab-stepping his way to 28 on 10-17, 3-6 and 5-5 shooting, while DeRozan added 24. Fun fact: Reggie Evans, starting at power forward for the Raps this season, has attempted just 11 field goals but is averaging just 16.3 rebounds per game.

San Antonio 97, L.A. Clippers 88: The Clippers remain winless, dropping this one to the Spurs with the final probably flattering them somewhat. Blake Griffin’s ROY campaign motors on, 17 points and 8 boards on 7-13 shooting, 3-7 at the line, while Eric Gordon added 23 points and 11 assists. Baron Davis had to sit out with a sore knee, with the rookie Eric Bledsoe getting the start and having 9/5/3 in 39 minutes of burn. San Antonio, however, had 5 guys in double-figures and assisted on 28 of their 38 field goals.

A couple of news headlines:

In addition to Diddy, Antawn Jamison and Shaq are both dealing with knee injuries of their own;

Rondo and Gasol were named the Players of the Week, and I’ll admit I overlooked Rondo when having a look at some of the early season MVP candidates (my bad);

And finally, Al Horford became the third and final player from the ’07 draft class to ink an extension, receiving a 5-year, $60 million deal from the Hawks.

Before I go, I’ll link to this article from the boys at the Basketball Prospectus, which has a look at 5 early season surprises from the opening week. It’s a good read, go and have a look.

Until next time.

Edit: apparently four players will receive extensions, with news just out that Jared Dudley has agreed to remain with the Phoenix Suns. Terms of the deal are not available.

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