Nikola Vucevic: Learn The Name

ImageWhile the Orlando Magic have been mearly mediocre this season, they do seem to have a glimmer of hope for the future in 23-year old center Nikola Vucevic. While you’ve probably never heard of him, Vucevic, standing at 7ft – 250lbs, is really showing an array of pure center skills that are very rare in todays NBA world and worthy of national notice. Combining a skill-set of solid post moves and rebounding, along with a decent mid-range game and some defense, Vucevic is really looking like the future centerpiece for this Orlando Magic squad. Check out his noteworthy stat breakdown through ten games this season.

The Numbers:

Per Game Averages: 15.8 ppg, 11.4 rpg (5th), 2.9 apg, 1.4 stl, 1.0 blk

Per Game Shooting Numbers: 55% field goals, 74.3% free throws

Efficiency: 23.6 (7th)

More Interesting Numbers:

Against .500+ teams:

Game Averages: 16.6 ppg, 12.2 rpg, 3.4 ast, 1.8 stl, 1.2 blk

Shooting: 52% FG, 81% FT

Efficiency: 25.4

The Most Interesting Numbers:

Win Shares (number of wins a player has contributed): 1.4 – 2nd on team (Afflalo)

Matchup Record (number of match-ups won vs opponent based on efficiency): 5-2

Per 48 minutes: 21.8 ppg, 15.7 rpg, 4 apg, 32.6 efficiency rating

As you can see, this dude can ball. While maybe not as glamours of a player as Dwight Howard, or as flashy and striking as DeAndre Jordan, Vucevic sure deserves the praise so far this season. If he can keep these numbers up, and the Magic can stay around that .500 mark come All-Star weekend, look for this guys’ name amongst those 13 players invited to the celebratory showdown.

Check out these highlights from his performance earlier this year against the Clippers (30 pts, 20 reb)

Pretty impressive, if you ask me.

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Who’s Been Good Early: Players To Watch

It is still very early in the NBA season but that doesn’t mean we can’t point out who’s playing well so far. Here at Sportsnonsense, we decided to do a rundown of one player on each team who’s impressed so far (we tried to avoid obvious choices such as Lebron). Who knows, by the end of the year everyone on this list might be terrible, so lets give them their due now. We have broken it down into two parts, so we’ll start with the Eastern Conference and the Western Conference will come out later this week.

Atlanta Hawks: Paul Millsap has been great so far for Atlanta, shooting a ridiculous 57% from the field. He and Al Horford have teamed up to make Atlanta a better team than many thought coming into the season. Image

Boston Celtics: Jared Sullinger is quietly having a nice stretch to start the year, giving the Celtics 10.8ppg and 5.2rbg in just 18 minutes per game. Hopefully he can stay healthy.

Brooklyn Nets: Even with all the huge names on this team, Brook Lopez has been their best player. He’s averaging 20ppg to go with 2.3 blocks per game.

Charlotte Bobcats: Bismack Biyombo is playing a lot of minutes for the Bobcats, 27 per game, and he’s being productive. He rarely shoots but he’s hauling in 8rpg and blocking shots. Remember, this guy is still just 21 years old.

Chicago Bulls: It’s been rough so far in Chicago, but Carlos Boozer (yes, Carlos Boozer) has been a stabilizing force, shooting close to 60%.

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