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Aussies in the NBA: Baynes notches career night in Houston
Following Jingles' recent waiver and his subsequent signing to the Jazz, we're standing at 7 proud Aussies representing Down Under over in the NBA. How is everyone faring in the season so far?
Aron Baynes (San Antonio Spurs)
With the Spurs resting their core players Duncan, Splitter, Manu Baynes on a back-to-back game, Baynes played a solid 31 minutes and had a career game against the Houston Rockets on 6 Nov 2014. (He only logged 1 minute of court time against the Hawks the night before.)
Latest stat line (v HOU): 12 points (4/10 FG), 12 rebounds (7 offensive!), 4/5 FT and 1 steal in 31 min
He played with great energy: running the break for transition points, cleaning the glass and also displayed confidence in his efforts against Howard on the low block.
That being said, his +/- was rated at -13, and we have one very awkward moment to remember Baynes' night by, courtesy of James "The Beard" Harden.
Ouch. Moving on!
Patty Mills (San Antonio Spurs)
Our favourite towel maestro is still recovering from offseason shoulder surgery, and is not expected to be back on the hardwood until January at least.
Here's a Patty hustle play from the last season, let's look forward to more great moments like these!
Matthew Dellavedova (Cleveland Cavaliers)
Bad news! According to Chris Haynes, Delly might have been diagnosed with a grade II MCL sprain and could miss up to 6 weeks of action. This has not been officially announced by the Cavaliers yet. In his last appearance, Delly clocked 11 minutes on the court in the loss against Portland.
Latest stat line (v POR): 2 points (1/4 FG), 0/1 3P, 2 rebounds (1 offensive) in 11 min
Most of Delly's shots were not easy shots, he had to drive and finish with floaters. The only set shot he had in the game was a corner three from a LeBron drive and kick, and that unfortunately rimmed out. In saying that, part of the problem stems from the new Cleveland offense, which is still a very raw project right now.
Dante Exum (Utah Jazz)
"Crocodile Dante" has displayed well-rounded, if somewhat inconsistent performances so far.
Latest stat line (v CLE): 3 points (1/5 FG), 0/3 3P, 1/2 FT, 2 rebounds, 5 assists in 25 min
His most impressive game this week came against the Suns on 1 Nov 2014. where he had 10 points and displayed good shooting rhythm in hitting 3/4 in catch and shoot 3s.
He also had 2 rebounds, 3 assists and clocked 2 steals, no small thanks to his length there.
Early red flag: Free throw shooting - Dante has made 37.5% (3 of 8) of his freebies so far. Obviously, this still a very small sample size and it's the early season, and should be taken with a grain of salt.
Joe Ingles (Utah Jazz)
Boomers teammate Exum's presence has definitely made Ingles' transition into the team easier, as seen in the little pick and roll play the duo executed with ease against the Clippers.
Latest statline (v CLE): 0 points (0/1 FG), 0/1 3P, 1 assist in 13 min
Whilst not carrying the scoring load, Ingles has been a good facilitator for the team. He's constantly looking for the right pass and better shot, and averages 1.6 assists so far.
Jingles and Exum are also going through their rookie hazing phase with the Jazz, which included having to wear pink backpacks featuring Disney's Frozen characters to training.
Thanks @gdhayward for the pink Frozen bag... Off to LA! #jazznation #rookieduties A photo posted by Danté Exum (@daanteee) on Nov 11, 2014 at 12:48pm PST
Andrew Bogut (Golden State Warriors)
After an easy 18 minutes against the Kings on opening night, Bogut's been averaging 32 minutes in the last three games, moving well and having the numbers to show for it.
Latest stat line (v LAC): 6 points (3/5 FG), 14 rebounds (3 offensive), 5 assists 3 TOs in 34 min
Bogey's role on offense is pretty defined: set screens, sneak off and wait for the lob pass, and of course, clean up the boards. He's done all three very well, and on top of that he has had opportunities to use his hook shot in the post, when presented with a favourable matchup.
As always, Bogut's health is critical to this team's postseason, and it might even be worth thinking about reducing his minutes on occasion to rest and save his body for April.
Cameron Bairstow (Chicago Bulls)
Chicago's rookie big man has only played one regular season game so far on 29 Oct 2014 against New York.
Latest stat line (v NYK): 0 points (0/1 FG), 1 TO in 4 min
With veterans Pau Gasol and Joakim Noah soaking up playing time at the center spot, Bairstow's playing time looks to be limited as he learns the intricacies of Tom Thibs' system. It wouldn't be surprising though, if he ends up taking significant minutes in today's Philadelphia game.
In other news, Cameron was paying Chicago weather no heed. Melbournians would've known better, just sayin'.
The Bulls Cameron Bairstow leaving practice wearing shorts and a t-shirt. He's from Australia. He'll learn. pic.twitter.com/itSndZTZAW
— Chuck Garfien (@ChuckGarfien) October 31, 2014
Game schedule for the week potentially featuring Aussies in the NBA
Sat, 8 Nov
Sun 9 Nov
Mon 10 Nov
Tue 11 Nov
Wed 12 Nov
Thu 13 Nov
All times are indicated in AEST.
Schedule timings extracted from Sportal - NBA Australia