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PBT Extra: Defense, Westbrook have Thunder turning season around

The numbers have long been there — their record says the Thunder are 11-12, but they have the point differential of a 14-9 team.

While much of the sports world kept asking “What is wrong with Oklahoma City?” turning their season around was simply a matter of winning some close games. 44 more words

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PBT Extra Player of the Week: James Harden

The Houston Rockets have won seven games in a row, and much of the focus nationally has been on an improved defense or Chris Paul’s return. 71 more words

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PBT Podcast: 2018 NBA Draft talk, end of one-and-done rule with Rob Dauster

Nobody likes the NBA’s one-and-done rule — not NBA teams, not college coaches, not university presidents, and especially not fans.

Momentum is finally building towards changing the rule… 147 more words

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PBT Extra Player of the Week: Damian Lillard

Quietly, the Portland Trail Blazers have put together the third best defense in the NBA so far this season. That’s the reason they are 13-8 and fourth in the Western Conference, and it’s the reason they went 3-1 last week all on the road (they were 4-1 on the road trip total). 93 more words

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PBT Extra: Injuries already shaping playoff race in West

The bottom half of the West playoff chase was always going to be a dogfight, with five or so teams packed in between 42-47 and a couple on the bottom of that missing the playoffs. 83 more words

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PBT Extra Player of the Week: James Harden

With Chris Paul sidelined, the Houston Rockets have gone back to a familiar playbook — all James Harden all the time.

It’s worked. The Rockets are 8-3, they are playing up-tempo again after a slow start, and last week at that pace Harden dominated — he dropped 31 on the Knicks in a win, 29 points and 11 assists on the Hawks, and then exploded against an elite Utah defense for 56 points on just 25 shots, plus 13 assists. 68 more words

James Harden