1. The NBA trade deadline was defined by unintended consequences – Paul Flannery, SB Nation
The NBA trade deadline was active, with DeMarcus Cousins moving, Nerlens Noel traded for Justin Anderson, and a handful of smaller trades happening within minutes of the deadline. The most notable decisions were the moves that didn’t get made, as Jimmy Butler and Paul George drew interest from many teams around the league, the Celtics most notably.
2. Yogi Ferrell’s 10-day contract showing – Jake Rauchbach, Basketball Insiders
Yogi Ferrell is trying to join the short list of players to sign a 10-day contract and eventually stick in the league, and so far, he’s making a convincing argument. After scoring 32 points in his fourth game as a Maverick, Ferrell has continued to impress, averaging 12.8 points and 4.8 assists with a 56.0 true shooting percentage. More importantly, the Mavericks have won seven of 12 since Ferrell joined the team, making him and Seth Curry a backcourt that teams need to game plan for in the future.
3. After tumultuous trade deadline, the Paul George trade deadline is only the beginning – Matt Moore, CBS Sports
Paul George has been frustrated this year, and he hasn’t tried to hide it. He’s made several statements about the season, and the rumors at the trade deadline were either Indiana becomes a contender soon or he’s leaving for the Lakers. The recent collective bargaining agreement would allow the Pacers to pay George much more than any other team, but in order to receive the money George must make an All-NBA team this year, something that seems more and more unlikely with each passing day.
4. Defense wins championships, but it won’t win the MVP – Dar-Wei Chen, 16 Wins a Ring
The validity of the statement is questionable, but the old saying “defense wins championships” is one that almost every fan of a sport has heard. It doesn’t win MVP awards, however; the last MVP to have the majority of his Win Shares (WS) come from the defensive end was Hakeem Olajuwon. That hasn’t always been the case, as the leaders in Win Shares were more likely to win the MVP in previous eras (with Bill Russell having a big part in that), but all of the top-10 players in Basketball-Reference’s MVP probability have the majority of their Win Shares from the offensive end. While defense may be half the game (which is also questionable), it doesn’t usually lead to an MVP nod.
5. Rodeo road trip provides adversity to build on for the playoffs – Michael C. Wright, ESPN.com
The Spurs’ annual road trip came at a time that could have spelled trouble. Pau Gasol was hurt, the team wouldn’t play a home game for a significant amount of time due to the All-Star Break, and the Spurs are relying on young players more than in recent past. But the rise of Dewayne Dedmon made things easier for the Spurs, as he stepped in for Gasol and made their suffocating defense even more stingy. Gasol returned to the lineup against the Los Angeles Lakers, scoring 32 points and 18 rebounds combined in the last two games off the bench, including converting on all five attempts from three in that time.