The Student News Site of South Forsyth High School

The Bird Feed

The Student News Site of South Forsyth High School

The Bird Feed

The Student News Site of South Forsyth High School

The Bird Feed

Anthony Davis Goes Crazy to Beat the Pacers for the NBA Cup

LeBron James wins the In-Season Tournament Championship and MVP
Lebron James mural in downtown Los Angeles
“LeBron James mural” by lukeharold is marked with CC0 1.0.
Lebron James mural in downtown Los Angeles

As the NBA In-Season Tournament has recently come to an end, now is a great time to break down different aspects of the game along with how seasoned players along with rookies performed in this newly created league.

The tournament started on Nov. 3, with the new “Greek Freak” and “Dame Time” duo Giannis Antetokounmpo and Damian Lillard beating the New York Knicks to show the League that they are a contending team for the championship. 

It ended Dec. 9; a spectacular game between the Los Angeles Lakers and Indiana Pacers came to an end with the Lakers emerging victorious.

Young Stars Shine on the Court

Many people question whether exciting rookies will flourish in their new environment or succumb to the pressure. One player that many had their eyes on is Victor Wembanyama, the San Antonio Spurs’ #1 pick in the 2023 Draft. 

Although many thought he would fail to reach his expectations, Wembanyama is averaging 19.2 points and 9.5 rebounds per game. He has been compared to superstars like Kevin Durant and even managed to drop 38 points on Durant’s team, the Phoenix Suns. 

Many people who doubted Wembanyama had more faith in players like Brandon Miller and Scoot Henderson. Miller, who plays for the Charlotte Hornets, has managed to keep consistent stats and even dunked on the 7′ 4″ Wembanyama one time. Unfortunately, Henderson, was recently assigned to the G-League for “return to court conditioning,” leaving many fans wondering whether he will have a successful future in the NBA.

A lot of high school basketball players know the Thompson Twins. Amen and Ausar played in Overtime Elite, a popular high school basketball league based in Atlanta, GA. Because they were the fourth and fifth draft pick respectively, they also had high expectations for how they would perform.

Amen, who plays for the Houston Rockets, was out for over a month with a Grade 2 ankle sprain, and was unfortunately assigned to the NBA G League. Fortunately for Amen he recorded a magnificent 29 points, 16 rebounds, and 11 assists triple double in his debut. Ausar, getting consistent minutes with the Pistons, has played decently, but not as well as others in his draft class.

Overall, a lot of rookies have shined in their first few NBA professional games, and the rest of the league is eager to see what their potential will evolve into.

All-Stars Rise to the Occasion

Everyone was excited to see how the superstars would perform in the new tournament.

2-time MVP Steph Curry thrived, averaging 29.4 points while shooting 43.2% from three. Damian Lillard and Giannis Antetokounmpo also displayed their new contending duo, averaging 25.6 and 30.5 but still falling short and losing to the Pacers.

Tyrese Haliburton, who averaged 26.9 points and 12.1 assists, carried the Indiana Pacers to the finals. Haliburton is one of the rising stars that will definitely have a successful career in the future. 

Another duo having a lot of success is Luka Dončić and Kyrie Irving. Dončić averaged 31.9 points and 8.7 assists while Kyrie averaged 23 points and 5 assists. The Dallas Mavericks are a formidable team with some nights having dominant wins against teams like the Jazz. However, the Oklahoma City Thunder stars Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Chet Holmgren, and Josh Giddey routed the Mavericks in an essential game. With more losses to the Nuggets and Kings, the Mavericks were ultimately removed from contention. 

In the end, Lebron and the Lakers came out on top and won the NBA Cup, but rising stars and seasoned players did a great job of displaying their skills, scoring, and playmaking. 

The Final Four Showdowns

The tournament playoffs had 4 sections: The West consisted of the LA Lakers vs Phoenix Suns and the Sacramento Kings vs New Orleans Pelicans, and the East consisted of the Milwaukee Bucks vs New York Knicks and the Indiana Pacers vs Boston Celtics. 

The Bucks blew through the Knicks, winning by 23 points, as Antetokounmpo and Lillard showed off their dominance once again. 

Haliburton carried the Pacers in a 10-point win against the Celtics, and the Pelicans also beat the Kings by 10 points. 

Lebron James, Anthony Davis, and Austin Reaves led the Lakers to a win against the Suns’ superteam, and the Lakers were set to play against the Pelicans next.

Lebron went off against the Pelicans, scoring 30 points in 3 quarters on 100% shooting from three, displaying his longevity and continued dominance to the rest of the League. 

The Lakers would eventually advance to the Finals against the Pacers, who beat the Bucks in the Semifinals. 

In the In-Season Tournament Championship, Haliburton showed out again, ending the game with 20 points and 11 assists. Unfortunately for the Pacers, they could not stop Lebron, Davis, and Reaves. Lebron finished with 24 points and Reaves with 28. 

Anthony Davis was a force on both ends of the court, ending with 41 points, 20 rebounds, and 4 blocks. 

The game ended with the Lakers winning 123-109, and Lebron James was named the first NBA In-Season Tournament MVP.

 

“The glorious, almighty king has won the 1st annual In-Season Tournament, and I couldn’t be more proud of my pookie bear sugar honey bun.”

— South Forsyth Freshman Chan Nguyen

Overall, the tournament was a spectacular new addition from Adam Silver and was a great way to keep the fans entertained. The tournament is sure to host several exciting matchups in the future.

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About the Contributor
Aaden Li, Sports Editor
Aaden Li is looking forward to writing in his first year with The Bird Feed. He can barely wait to play basketball on the freshman team and write for the Sports section. This summer he got a picture with Duke commit Jared McCain and now treats it like his most prized possession. He loves basketball, drawing, and video games. He used to be an avid reader but has switched to watching more TV shows and anime such as Rick and Morty (his favorite), Naruto Shippuden, One Piece, Demon Slayer, Vinland Saga, Blue Lock, and Jujutsu Kaisen. His current obsessions include doodling in his notebook during classes, facetiming with his friends in his room with his LED lights barely turned on, and yelling at little kids while beating them in  Fortnite. He one day hopes to follow in the footsteps of his mom who works in the medical field and buy the most expensive PC that his stubborn parents don’t want to buy him.