NBA Picks December 6 + League-wide Thoughts
I started the week well, correctly picking two games to start the week 2–0. I correctly predicted the outcome of the game that saw Klay Thompson score 60 points, so I think it’s fair to say that I saw that one coming (this is a joke, by the way). In a year where nobody was surprised by a 17–3 record, the Warriors finally did something that got everyone excited.
Tonight, there is one game on NBA TV (although I’m adding a League Pass choice, as well):
San Antonio at Minnesota: San Antonio
In a vacuum, I’d pick the Spurs every time. While everyone is salivating about a Clippers/Warriors series, the Spurs are actually the team in second place right now. Tonight, San Antonio is finishing a back-to-back on the road. However, even that handicap isn’t enough for me to choose the inconsistent Wolves over Gregg Popovich’s well-oiled machine. The Spurs haven’t lost a road game yet this season, and while this game is a risky choice, I like San Antonio here.
Chicago at Detroit: Detroit
I picked Detroit to beat Orlando in the Reggie Jackson Return Game, and they laid an egg. Tonight, though, against a Chicago team that finishing a back-to-back, I still like Detroit. The Pistons were a decent team without their best player, and now he’s back and ready to roll. I’m fully ready to admit that the Bulls are much better than I thought they would be, and it wouldn’t shock me if Chicago finds a way to win here. However, there are more reason to feel good about a Detroit pick, which is the way I’m going with this one.
I’m fascinated by how much people just take some players’ greatness for granted. James Harden and Russell Westbrook are single-handedly propelling their teams into the playoff race, but many don’t seem surprised because this level of production is expected. This isn’t a shot at any NBA media or twitter personalities, just a note on how much expectations can blind us to greatness.
That’s a long segue into Klay’s 60-point game. The Warriors were already a very good team. They were 17–3 before last night. But because we’ve already seen this team start 24–0, we aren’t nearly as impressed. Thompson’s outburst was impressive, and I think it took every one of those points to remind everyone just how good of a player he is on a nightly basis. This is as much an observation of how I view basketball as anything else. Klay is great, but he gets drowned out by all the other talent on that team.