A look around the league and the Web that covers it. It's also important to note that the rotation order and starting nods aren't always listed in order of importance. That's for you, dear reader, to figure out.
C: A Wolf Among Wolves. We know that the Minnesota Timberwolves would love to see Ricky Rubio improve his shooting in his third NBA season, but just how much — and in what areas — does the Spanish point guard's scoring need to advance for the Wolves to have a shot at producing an elite offense? Zach Harper runs the numbers in an interesting look at a huge issue for what figures to be one of the NBA's most interesting teams this season.
PF: Grantland. Zach Lowe considers the Hall of Fame case for Chris Webber, who becomes eligible for enshrinement next year. It is compelling.
SF: The Dream Shake. David Clark considers the Hall of Fame case for Robert Horry, who also becomes eligible for enshrinement next year. It is, in my view, less compelling, though passionately argued.
SG: Hickory High. Patrick Redford's here to defend tanking, because he wants to see Ben Uzoh mess around and get a triple-double (kind of).
PG: Pro Hoops History. Curtis Harris goes long on the state of New York professional basketball in 1976, with the NBA's New York Knicks sinking and the ABA's New York Nets soaring, and where the fates of the franchises and their preeminent players went from there.
6th: San Jose Mercury News. From the "Success breeds success" department: Fresh off a second-round berth and a strong offseason, the Golden State Warriors have already set a franchise record for season ticket sales for the season ahead.
7th: Fear the Sword. David Zavac takes a fun look at a question a lot of us (myself included) have batted around at least a little bit over the past couple of years: How do John Wall and Kyrie Irving compare at this stage in their careers, and how might that comparison evolve in the future?
8th: All Ball. Training camp's two weeks away, y'all, and as always, we're reading reports that NBA players have either added or dropped weight in the interest of being in the best shapes of their lives. Intrepid reporter Lang Whitaker chronicles the life-shaping in the legendary #MUSCLEWATCH.
9th: Blazer's Edge. Dave's parsing of the stats vs. eyeballs debate isn't revolutionary — in fact, I'd argue that it's the stance most reasonable people who use advanced stats in their analyses have been advocating for a while — but it's well-framed and worth reiterating: "... statistics, like every other analytic approach, make a great place to start conversation but a poor conversation ender."
10th: TrueHoop. Speaking of stats vs. eyes: Henry Abbott takes a closer look at Kevin Martin's scorching crunch-time shooting from last season and finds a pretty simple explanation for why he was basically unconscious close and late — he barely ever got to shoot, and when he did, he was basically wide open, thanks to Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook. Makes sense.
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