In a duo-dominated NBA, LeBron and A.D. are currently the best
This is—or at least it could have been—the year of the duo in the NBA.
LeBron James and Anthony Davis. James Harden and Russell Westbrook. Kawhi Leonard and Paul George. Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum. Luka Doncic and Kristaps Porzingis. Stephen Curry and Draymond Green. Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons. Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant. John Wall and Bradley Beal. Pascal Siakam and Kyle Lowry. Giannis Antetokounpo and Khris Middleton. Zach LaVine and Lauri Markkanen. Devin Booker and DeAndre Ayton.
Okay, some of those may be stretches. George has not yet made his Clippers debut. Draymond is not a clear-cut second-best player on the Warriors and now Curry is out for the foreseeable future. Embiid and Simmons have tons of help in Philadelphia. Durant is missing his first season in Brooklyn. Wall has disappeared from the Wizards. Toronto will be without Lowry for a few weeks. Giannis is by far the best player on the Bucks, to the extent that Middleton is not really his sidekick. Ayton is serving a 25-game suspension to leave Phoenix in a bind.
Three of the league’s legitimate duos, however, are well-oiled machines right now. Let’s take a look.
LeBron James and Anthony Davis
What makes for a great duo? Both guys have to be playing well and their team has to be successful. Making their supporting cast pale in comparison to their standout performances also helps. LeBron and A.D. are accomplishing all of those feats. Heading into Sunday’s date with the Raptors, the Lakers are tied with Boston for the best record in the association at 7-1. LeBron is averaging 26.0 points, 10.5 assists, 7.8 rebounds, and 1.4 steals per game. Davis is going for 26.5 ppg, 10.5 rpg, 3.3 apg, and 3.0 bpg. Nobody else on the Lakers is contributing more than 10.4 ppg. Check out our free NBA picks for tonight’s game and throughout the season.
James Harden and Russell Westbrook
The jury is still out on the Harden-Westbrook combination because the Rockets have not yet defeated anyone good. They have lost to their three toughest opponents in Milwaukee, Miami, and Brooklyn on the way to an otherwise solid 6-3 record. Harden leads the NBA by a mile with 37.1 ppg in addition to 8.2 apg, 5.6 rpg, and 1.3 spg. Westbrook registers at 21.4 ppg, 9.3 rpg, 7.9 apg, and 1.8 spg. Clint Capela is third on Houston at 13.8 ppg.
Luka Doncic and Kristaps Porzingis
For the sixth game out of nine this season, Doncic led his team in points, assists, and rebounds during a 138-122 victory over Memphis on Saturday. The second-year star is delivering MVP-caliber performances on a nightly basis, averaging 27.7 ppg, 10.8 rpg, 9.1 apg, and 1.2 spg. Porzingis is getting the job done on both ends of the floor, contributing 20.1 ppg and 2.3 bpg. No other teammate is averaging better than 10.9 ppg.