2 Up 2 Down Report (NBA Season 2023 October/November)

By: Tyrone Montgomery Jr

Headline Photo Credit: Kristina Roulo-LMS Network


Orlando Magic

Photo Credit: Kristina Roulo-LMS Network

Don’t look now, but the Orlando Magic are one of the best teams in the NBA. By record, they are indeed one of the best teams in the league. They still are very inexperienced and some can even make the case that they are raw within their talent. They still have been faced with something they just can’t seem to get away from, the injury bug. Markelle Fultz have missed several games along with Jonathan Isaac as usual. The drafting of multiple guards every year has seemed to be of benefit to this team. Rookie guard Anthony Black has stepped up when they needed him too. Cole Anthony has been solid for them all season long aa well as Jalen Suggs who is finally healthy. All it took was a little bit of time. The cherry on top has been Paolo Banchero who should definitely be named an allstar this season. He has been phenomenal along with Franz Wagner who is one of the most underrated and under appreciated players in the entire league. This looks like the year the Orlando Magic finally make it into the playoffs.

Anthony Edwards

Dec 6, 2023; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Timberwolves guard Anthony Edwards (5) works past San Antonio Spurs forward Cedi Osman (16) in the fourth quarter at Target Center. Mandatory Credit: Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports

They have called him the new Kobe Bryant. Some have even mentioned his name along with the great Michael Jordan. No matter the case, Anthony Edwards have finally entered into the superstar conversation and he hasn’t even touched the tip of the iceberg yet. The Minnesota Timberwolves have the best record in the entire NBA. Yes, they are above the Boston Celtics and the Denver Nuggets who are clearly the most talented teams in the NBA. Their success is coming from Antman himself. We’re not hearing about Karl Anthony Towns anymore. Nor are we hearing about Rudy Gobert who they gave up the farm for. The reason for the success in Minnesota is simply because of Anthony Edwards. He is averaging 25+ points per game, 5+ rebounds per game, and 5+ assists per game as well. He is also shooting nearly 50% from the field. He’s figuring it out in his fourth year in the NBA. He is playing smart. He’s playing with his teammates getting them involved and not putting too much pressure on his shoulders despite him having a career season. Anthony Edwards is entering into the top ten of league conversation.


Washington Wizards

Jan 1, 2023; Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA; Washington Wizards forward Kyle Kuzma (33) i controls the the ball pressured by Milwaukee Bucks guard Pat Connaughton (24) the second half at Fiserv Forum. Mandatory Credit: Michael McLoone-USA TODAY Sports

Trading away two all star quality players is hard and sure to effect your team in a negative way. However, nobody expected it to be this bad this early. The Washington Wizards have made themselves out to be one of the worst teams in basketball. Now they’re not quite at the very bottom, but it’s pretty bad despite them not being hopeless. These guys are simply learning the game all over again and that’s the frustrating part. Both Kyle Kuzma and Jordan Poole have won NBA Championships. However, they won them playing next to some of the greatest players of all time. LeBron James is no doubt the second greatest player if not the greatest player of all time. That is a debate for another day. Steph Curry has to be a top ten player of all time as well. So it was easy to experience success playing next to them. Now, both Kuzma and Poole are asked to carry the team and be a go to option and it simply hasn’t worked. Now there are a lot of holes to fill there. The Wizards need some front court help as well as a more experienced coaching system. But the Wizards have had their fair share of struggles thus far this season.

Detroit Pistons

Dec 11, 2023; Detroit, Michigan, USA; Detroit Pistons guard Cade Cunningham (2) hangs onto the rim after dunking the ball against the Indiana Pacers in the third quarter at Little Caesars Arena. Mandatory Credit: Lon Horwedel-USA TODAY Sports

There’s a saying in life that goes “If you’re not first, you’re last.” Yes, the Detroit Pistons are no where near first in the NBA. As a matter of fact, they are at the very bottom of the league. They unfortunately have the worst record in basketball. That is due to them unfortunately having the longest losing streak at 19 and counting. This season feels worst than last season for them. The decision making in Detroit is questionable. Jaden Ivey had a really good rookie campaign and now he’s coming off the bench? Killian Hayes is starting for the Pistons and he has been a bust thus far in his NBA career. He is able to put up somewhat decent numbers now but that is only due to the fact that his usage is very high. Head Coach Monty Williams hasn’t made the best decisions with his roster rotation either. Now the only bright spots for the Pistons have been Cade Cunningham and Jalen Duren who is currently out due to injury yet again. The Pistons have been a disgrace and a hard team to watch thus far this season.