Re: Nuggets @ Suns (Dec 20)
As a Suns fan, what pleases me is that Amare has picked up his rebounding lately. He's lead the Suns in rebounding in 7 straight games.
He's always had the ability but not always the will. Porter called him out for it, as well as his need to improve his all-around game - about 2 games into this month - since then he's averaged 12 boards per game and 3 assists. D'Antoni never called Amare out on anything, Porter has taken a different approach and it's working.
He still needs to work on his defensive awareness a lot, but his man to man D has improved from last season. Saying Amare is "good offensively but terrible on D" seems to have become the cool thing to say, if you want to pretend you know a lot about him. Watch a few games - he's worked on his man to man D. Still needs better defensive awareness overall though, and his help D is still a little suss. Overall, he still needs to put more effort into it. But it's getting there, slowly.
If you want statistics, his opponent PER is 15, compared to Duncan's 14.6 and Garnett's 13.3. It was 23 last season.
He obviously wants to get to Duncan/KG's level. He's still got a long way to go - but it's good to see that he's taken a few steps forward.