Al-Farouq Aminu is arguably my favorite Deacon, so if I fail to maintain objective, then I apologize. Aminu's per game numbers may be down from last year, but it's important to point out the caveat that Anthony Davis is emerging as an absolute stud at power forward and the Pelicans acquired Jrue Holiday and Tyreke Evans in the offseason. Rouq has still started every game this season, as he did in 71 of the 76 games he played in last season. The Pelicans are a young team who have a chance to make the playoffs this season, and Aminu is a reason they have a chance. I'm a believer in "The Chief."
Tim Duncan's numbers haven't been overwhelming on the surface(13.3 ppg, 6.8 rpg, 1.5 bpg), but considering he has been playing limited minutes and picking his spots, those numbers are still fairly efficient. Anyone who watched the Finals last season knows that Duncan can still play at a very high level. In the Finals, Duncan averaged 18.9 points, 12.1 rebounds and 1.4 blocks per game. Pretty good for a 37 year old. Look for the Spurs (6-1) to continue to limit Duncan's minutes and save him for the playoffs. Duncan has a great chance at earning his fifth ring this season.
Christopher Emmanuel Paul has been nothing short of exceptional so far this season. The unquestioned leader of "Lob City" has had a double-double in every game he's played this season and is averaging 21.3 points, 12.6 assists, 4.3 rebounds, and 2.7 steals per game. Yes, those are averages. If that wasn't enough, he is shooting 98% from the foul line. Call it small sample size all you want, but he he along with Kevin Love have been the MVP's of the league so far.
Please watch this alley-oop from CP3 to Blake Griffin. Your productivity will be completely done for the day, but you won't regret it. Such a sensational pass and such an unreal display of athleticism. Oh and by the way, CP3 had 42 points, 15 assists and 6 steals in that game.
Ish Smith went undrafted in 2010 and Kendall Marshall was drafted in the lottery in 2012, but that did not stop the Phoenix Suns from deciding to keep Smith over Marshall when the Suns dealt Kendall Marshall along with Marcin Gortat, Shannon Brown, and Malcom Lee to the Wizards for Emeka Okafor and 2014 1st round rick. Marshall was waived by the Wizards several days after the trade.
Smith does not have stellar per game numbers, but that's because he has only played about 12 minutes per game. His PER is 14.40, which is just slightly below league average. With his quickness, he'll find a way to stay in the league for a while.
Jeff Teague "to the League" is having an excellent season so far. Through six games he is averaging 17.7 points and 9.8 assists per game, both of which are career highs. His PER of 19.19 is also a career high. I realize it's a very small sample size, but so far Teague has absolutely earned his 4 year/$32 million extension that he signed this past summer. The Hawks lost Josh Smith to Detroit via free agency, but the trio of Teague, Al Horford and Paul Millsap could get this team back to the playoffs.
(h/t to Hoop Mix Tape)
This clip is from last season, but it's always fun to see a Deac dunk on Durant.