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The Starting 5: Be Thankful

Photo via The WHY NOT? Foundation

The Starting 5: A look at some of the best hoops content from around the Internet

1. “NBA: What All Teams Should Be Thankful For in 2015-16” – Michael Saenz of Sir Charles in Charge

It’s Turkey Day, but more importantly, the day we all remember the things in our lives we are thankful for. Presumably, many NBA players and front-office members do the same as they sit around their dinner tables and living rooms.

Believe it or not, every NBA team does actually have something to be thankful for this Thanksgiving.

Saenz goes through all 30 squads and comes up with one main reason for thankfulness. As you can imagine, there are certain teams that have to think harder to come up with something (*cough* Brooklyn *cough*), but every squad has an item nonetheless.

2. “The Rooster Returns: Danilo Gallinari’s Shot at the Future” – Ben Detrick of VICE Sports

On the topic of thankfulness, don’t you think the Nuggets are happy Danilo Gallinari is his old self again? An ACL injury robbed nearly two seasons of effective play from the versatile Italian, but now he’s averaging a career-high 18.2 points per game on a young, scrappy 6-9 Nuggets squad that hang around in games they should lose by 20.

Although I didn’t agree with one statement in the piece (I believe Denver is fully rebuilding, not in between contending and rebuilding), it’s well-written by Detrick and he gets some good direct quotes from Gallinari.

3. “Visualizing Offensive Style: Year-to-Year Comparisons” – Ian Levy of Nylon Calculus

If you’re a visual learner and love advanced stats, read this piece. In fact, Nylon Calculus should probably just be your browser’s home page if both of those things are true.

Levy uses a four-factor system to identify each team’s overall offensive style, and superimposes every squad’s start the season against what it did last year. It’s interesting to see how so many squads have gone a different direction with their offenses in 2015-16.

4. “Even Ballet Dancers Are in Awe of Stephen Curry’s Moves” – Scott Cacciola of the New York Times

I told myself before gathering the content for this piece that there wouldn’t be anything about the Warriors. Thanks to their record-breaking 16 wins to start the season and the attention that deservedly gets, we all know pretty much everything that needs to be known about Golden State.

But this piece was just too cool and unique to withhold from you guys.

Cacciola gets with some ballet dancers to talk about Steph’s game. The dancers have a lot of respect for what he’s able to do and notice a lot of similarities in their preparation for competition and general movement patterns.

5. “Can the Bucks Solve Their Growing Defensive Problem?” – Jordan Treske of Behind the Buck Pass

One of the biggest trends of the young NBA season has been the balancing out of conferences. Eastern Conference teams like the Indiana Pacers, Charlotte Hornets and New York Knicks are playing better than expected while the Los Angeles Clippers, Houston Rockets and New Orleans Pelicans are struggling out West.

Milwaukee is bucking that trend, however.

After a 41-41 record last season, the Bucks are 6-9 and sport the fourth-worst point differential (minus-7.2) in the NBA. The chief culprit behind that has been the worst defense in the league, a huge surprise considering Milwaukee ranked second last season.

The piece is a few days old, but it rings just as true following a 129-118 home regulation loss to the Sacramento Kings on Wednesday. Treske diagnoses exactly what’s going wrong with the team.

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