The NBA returns: 10 things to know entering the second half

The All-Star break, this sort of as it was, is in excess of.

The NBA returns Wednesday with a pair of online games: Washington at Memphis and San Antonio at Dallas. One more 21 groups start out their second-50 percent slates on Thursday, and the 5 remaining groups get back on the court Friday.

Here’s 10 things to know about what’s taking place, what may possibly take place and what to view the rest of the way:

NO A lot more Benefit

Household groups have gone 285-248 this year, a .535 winning percentage. It is on speed to be the cheapest in NBA history.

The history in that section is .551, established very last year — and it was trending that way even in advance of the pandemic. The bubble and participating in the closing 88 standard-year online games without having supporters had almost nothing to do with that adjust in point, “home” groups in the bubble gained 56% of their online games at Walt Disney Entire world.

But this year, groups feel the absence of supporters variables into residence-court edge not meaning a lot. Additionally, street groups are finding extra rest than usual — they are often in just one town for numerous times to perform a pair of online games and usually can’t leave their inns for something other than basketball.


Utah has the ideal history at the All-Star break, which obviously suggests the Jazz are a title contender.

The latest history says or else.

In the preceding eleven seasons, nine groups that had the ideal history at the break didn’t gain the championship. The only exceptions: Miami in 2012 (the Heat ended up tied with NBA Finals runner-up Oklahoma City that year at 27-7 throughout the break), and Golden Point out in the two 2015 and 2017.

3’S Nonetheless WILD

Even with shortened schedules — groups participating in seventy two online games alternatively of the usual eighty two — there is a possibility the history for three-tips built league-wide in a year receives broken.

NBA groups are on speed to make 27,731 three-tips this year. That would be just 224 shy of the history, which is 27,955 established in 2018-19.

Groups are averaging twelve.8 built 3’s per game, so the league is on speed to break that history for the ninth consecutive year. They’re also averaging 34.nine attempts from three-position vary per game, which will be a history for a 10th consecutive year — and almost double the level from a ten years ago.


Washington’s Bradley Beal sales opportunities the NBA in scoring at 32.7 factors per game, and Philadelphia’s Joel Embiid is second at 30.2 per contest.

The Eastern Conference having the leaders in this class is a new twist.

No participant from an East team has gained a scoring title since Carmelo Anthony did for New York in 2012-13. And the very last time the East had the league’s two foremost scorers for a complete year was 2008-09 — when Miami’s Dwyane Wade gained the title, and Cleveland’s LeBron James was second.

2nd-50 percent SPURS

There are four groups with lively streaks of at the very least 5 consecutive seasons with winning information right after the All-Star break.

Toronto has 5, Portland 7 and Houston eight. And they are all mild years absent from San Antonio.

The Spurs have a winning post-All-Star history in 22 consecutive seasons — a streak so extensive that it predates the very last time the league didn’t have an All-Star Recreation. The Spurs went 22-twelve right after the break in 1997-98, there was no game since of the shortened year in 1998-99, and the San Antonio streak has saved going each and every year since.

The Spurs are 449-192 in the very last 22 post-All-Star stretches, a 70% winning clip.


The 1st 50 percent was hectic. There ended up 533 online games in the season’s 1st seventy two times (excluding Xmas Eve, normally an off working day for the NBA), for an ordinary of 7.four online games per working day.

The second 50 percent could be busier.

If each and every remaining game receives played — in fairness, that is a pretty significant ‘if’ — the league would have 547 online games in excess of sixty eight times in the second 50 percent, or an ordinary of just in excess of eight online games per working day.

Mounting SUNS

Phoenix strike the All-Star break with the league’s second-ideal history at 24-eleven.

It is a important turnaround.

The Suns’ information at the very last 5 All-Star breaks ended up awful: 22-33 very last year, preceded by a league-worst eleven-48 in 2018-19, eighteen-41 (tied for worst in the league) in 2017-eighteen, eighteen-39 (twenty ninth out of 30 groups) in 2016-17 and fourteen-40 (tied for third-worst) in 2015-16.

The very last time the Suns ended up in excess of .500 at the break had been 2014-fifteen, when they ended up 29-twenty five. And the very last time they ended up this fantastic by the break was 2007-08, when they ended up 37-16 — with latest Brooklyn assistant Mike D’Antoni coaching, latest Golden Point out coach Steve Kerr jogging the entrance workplace and latest Nets head coach Steve Nash participating in position guard.

CP3 NEARS 10,000

One more be aware on Phoenix: Chris Paul remains elite.

He’s 47 helps absent from 10,000 in his job, a milestone only 5 other gamers — John Stockton, Jason Kidd, Steve Nash, Mark Jackson and Magic Johnson — have attained.

This is Paul’s sixteenth year. The New Orleans/Oklahoma City Hornets had a shedding history in the online games that he played in excess of his 1st two seasons, a tough time for that franchise adhering to the relocation prompted by Hurricane Katrina.

His groups have finished almost nothing but gain significant since.

This will be the 14th consecutive year in which Paul’s team has a winning history when he plays the Suns are 23-eleven with him in the lineup this year.

All 5 of Paul’s groups in excess of those people past fourteen seasons — the Hornets, the Los Angeles Clippers, Houston, Oklahoma City and now Phoenix — have at the very least a .600 winning percentage in his standard-year appearances. Combined, his groups in excess of those people fourteen years have gained 66.four% of their online games when he plays.


It is not an quick year for any team, with the online games coming pretty quickly, not a good deal of apply time and rosters tending to be in flux since of virus-connected issues.

Most likely that is why no team has some type of super-gaudy history at the break.

Utah’s 27-nine mark right after the 1st 50 percent is the league’s “worst best” mark since Sacramento was 37-13 to lead the league going into the 2004 All-Star Recreation.

JIMMY’S Artwork

Miami’s Jimmy Butler is just one of the league’s couple gamers who prosper in the mid-vary game.

That features the unguarded fifteen-footer.

Butler may possibly do a thing the league hasn’t found in twelve years. The very last time someone averaged at the very least 20 factors per game and acquired at the very least 35% of those people factors at the foul line was 2008-09 when Sacramento’s Kevin Martin did it — averaging 24.6 factors, finding 36.four% of them at the stripe.

Butler is averaging 20.5 factors this year, 35% of that from free throws.

Past year, Butler arrived near, with 37.nine% of his factors from the foul line. But he averaged 19.nine factors, only 3 factors shy of averaging accurately 20..


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