1) State Of The Pelicans’ Defense

Summary: Defense has been and will continue to be one of the key subplots of the New Orleans Pelicans' 2016-17 season. New Orleans has finished in the bottom third of the league in defensive efficiency in each of Anthony Davis' four NBA seasons, with last season's No. 28 ranking tying the low point set in Davis' rookie year.

The issues on that end come up often in the media, yet no one articulates the granular details of what's going on better than Solomon Hill, who joined the Pelicans this summer after three seasons with the Indiana Pacers and has already become the unofficial leader of New Orleans' defense.

With that in mind, we introduce a semi-regular series in which we offer up the unfiltered analysis that emerges from Hill's media scrums. (from Justin Verrier) http://www.espn.com/blog/new-orleans-pelicans/post...

2) Nuggets Hoping Bigger Can Be Better In Small Ball NBA

Summary: The combination of Jusuf Nurkic and Nikola Jokic would give the Nuggets two 7-footers in the starting lineup (from Christopher Dempsey) http://www.denverpost.com/2016/10/15/nuggets-small...

3) It's Time To Stop Denigrating James Harden

Summary: There are fair things to criticize Harden for. No player is without fault. But more than any player in the league, Harden has become defined by his flaws and in spite of his tremendously successful measurables. (from Kelly Scaletta) http://www.todaysfastbreak.com/nba-west/houston-ro...

4) How Steph Curry Is Training To Improve

Summary: Last year, in the wake of his inaugural Most Valuable Player season, Warriors guard Stephen Curry did something staggering: He became significantly, undeniably, startlingly better.

Not coincidentally, Curry won his second consecutive MVP award. No other player in the NBA — not LeBron James, not Kevin Durant, not anybody — earned even one first-place vote.

And now?

Curry faces a sizable challenge this season, trying to produce an encore to his back-to-back MVP seasons. He yearns to gain redemption for his Finals pratfall against Cleveland, naturally, but the more immediate question: How can he improve upon his past two regular seasons?

Warriors assistant coach Bruce Fraser, the unofficial Curry Whisperer, offered some ideas. Fraser, who works with Curry virtually every day during the season, brings uncommon insight into his game. (from Ron Kroichick) http://www.sfchronicle.com/warriors/article/How-St...

5) Hawks Need Dwight Howard To Be Versatile

Summary: The Atlanta Hawks and Dwight Howard will hunt for a happy ratio in training camp between brawn and finesse.

The Hawks, who were last in the NBA in offensive rebounding in 2015-16, want a bully in the paint. Howard, 30, wants some wings and a fast pace where he can be a kid again.

“I don’t know if you ever saw me play in high school, I grew up playing point guard,” Howard says with a smile.

What this will look like is anybody’s guess. (from Ron Glier) http://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/nba/hawks/201...

6) Video: Steph Curry's Shooting Mechanics

Summary: Coach Nick broke down exclusive video footage of Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry's shooting practice, explaining in detail everything from the feet to the eyes.
(from Coach Nick)

7) Five Plays That The NBA's Best Defenses Can't Stop

Summary: Every offense has that one go-to play they rely on when they need a bucket. Some of those plays are so good that it really doesn’t matter that the defense does. (from Scott Rafferty) http://fansided.com/2016/10/18/nba-season-preview-...

8) Strategies For Stopping The Warriors

Summary: An exclusive, behind-the-scenes look at how the rest of the NBA is coping with Golden State’s superteam reveals that—yeah, everyone else is pretty screwed. But across the star-studded basketball galaxy, rebel fleets are plotting the impossible. Herein, strategies to take down the Death Star… and fix an unfair league (from Howard Beck) http://thelab.bleacherreport.com/operation-stop-th...

9) Taj Gibson Continues To Shine

Summary: In his 8th season with the team, Gibson reflects Chicago as well as any athlete (from Sam Smith) http://www.nba.com/bulls/news/taj-gibson-continues...

10) Season Previews For All 30 Teams

Summary: Each team’s blog had a lot to say about this season. See them all here. (from Jeff Clark) http://www.celticsblog.com/2016/10/19/13328834/all...