Welcome back to NBA Star Power Index: A weekly gauge of the players who are most controlling the buzz around the league. Inclusion on this list isn’t necessarily a good thing. It simply means you’re capturing the NBA world’s attention. This is also not a ranking. The players listed are in no particular order as it pertains to the buzz they’re generating. This column will run every week throughout the regular season.
The Lakers have gotten out to a sluggish 2-2 start (they survived in OT at San Antonio on Tuesday without LeBron James, who was out with a sore leg), but the good news is LeBron James continues to look like a player capable of carrying a team. James’ 3-point shot is particularly splashy (as is his fadeaway).
Through three games, James is taking just under 10 3-pointers per game and hitting 48 percent of them. If you’re interested in how the Lakers have played with using Russell Westbrook as a pick-and-roll partner with LeBron, our Sam Quinn provided a good breakdown here.
Do yourself a favor and clear your schedule for as many Hornets games as you can. They are an Indy car, and LaMelo Ball is in the driver’s seat with the throttle pegged. Charlotte has jumped out to a 3-1 start with Ball shooting 50 percent from 3 on eight attempts a night; he’s already made seven 3s in two separate games.
That kind of shooting was simply not expected from Ball, and certainly not this early. His comfort and confidence bely his experience. When he’s making 3s off the dribble and the catch on top of making passes like this one below, he’s an All-Star level player already.
People are going to play the premature card, but the Golden State Warriors, though they’re obviously going