It’s time to take a look at the best of the best from around the NBA. This is what Salute Magazine’s starting five looks like this week.
JOHN WALL- 21.0 PPG, 12.0 APG, 7.5 RPG, 1.8 SPG, .446% FGP
John Wall has been on a tear this past week, he posted triple-doubles in back to back days against the Bulls and 76ers. As a result, the Wizards went 4-0 this past week and are just 1.5 games behind the Bulls for 8th.
John Wall's back-to-back triple-doubles, a franchise first since Darrell Walker did it on Jan. 21 & 23, 1991https://t.co/7SikssxZIJ
— NBA History (@NBAHistory) March 18, 2016
The Wizards will need John Wall to continue to play like this if they have any chance of making the playoffs.
Bradley Beal has been injured for parts of the season but that is still no excuse for a team that was expected to finished in the top half of the Eastern Conference. John Wall is putting the team on his back and he should continue to do so.
VICTOR OLADIPO- 28.5 PPG, 5.0 RPG, 3.8 APG, 2.3 BPG, .587% FGP
It’s important that we give credit to some talent on some weaker teams. One of those guys is Victor Oladipo who was on fire for the Orlando Magic this week. Oladipo averaging more than two blocks per game and shooting close to 59 percent is outstanding to say the least. His best highlight was a 45 point game in a loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers.
— NBA (@NBA) March 19, 2016
The Magic may not be going anywhere this season but at least they have a quality guard in Victor Oladipo.
KEVIN DURANT- 26.8 PPG, 9.5 RPG, 7.5 APG, .529% FGP
Russell Westbrook has started to garner more and more attention with his performances but Kevin Durant continues to score on a nightly basis. Durant posted double-doubles in consecutive games against the 76ers and Pacers.
Kevin Durant tonight: 26 points, 13 rebounds, 6 assists. Take a look at his highlight reel. https://t.co/FxAk0NlmKJ
— OKC THUNDER (@okcthunder) March 19, 2016
When Durant can stay healthy, the Thunder are obviously one of the better teams in the NBA. If they can hold onto their leads that they have in the fourth quarter, they’ll be an even more dangerous team.
DIRK NOWITZKI- 26.8 PPG, 8.0 RPG, 2.0 BPG, .519% FGP
Dirk Nowitzki’s best days as an NBA player were supposed to be long gone, but he continues to produce at a high rate. Nowitzki has even been blocking shots after averaging two per game this week. Dirk’s best game came against the Blazers yesterday when he dropped 40 on them.
At the age of 37, Dirk Nowitzki became the oldest player to score 40 points since Karl Malone (39) in 2003.https://t.co/GKx3oGL8Xt
— NBA Canada (@NBACanada) March 21, 2016
Dirk Nowitzki has been called soft before but his consistency and longevity make him one of the best to ever play the game. The Mavericks are in control of the 8th playoff spot in the West but only hold a one game lead over the Utah Jazz.
DEMARCUS COUSINS- 24.3 PPG, 12.5 RPG, 2.3 BPG, 2.0 SPG, .453% FGP
DeMarcus Cousins is a double-double machine and that was on full display this past week. The Kings played four games and Cousins had at least 20 point and 10 rebounds in three of those games. Cousins destroyed the Knicks last night, putting up 24 points and 20 rebounds.
DeMarcus Cousins para Rudy Gay! https://t.co/bVH1nPo7mE
— NBA (@NBA_Fotos10) March 21, 2016
— Dime Magazine (@DimeMag) March 21, 2016
When he’s not busy being a coach killer or shoving security guards, he’s one of the best of the league. Unfortunately for him, the Kings still aren’t very good.