Dec 20, 2013; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Indiana Pacers forward Paul George (24) celebrates with center Roy Hibbert (55) after a reverse dunk against the Houston Rockets at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. Indiana defeats Houston 114-81. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

NBA All-Star Break: What we've learned in the first half of the season

Editor’s note: This is a guess post from Justin Becker of FantasyBasketballMoneyLeagues.com. You can follow him on twitter at @NBAFantasyInfo, and for more information on the NBA visit Fantasy Basketball Money Leagues – your online source for anything about fantasy basketball.

NBA All-Star weekend is upon us and we’re a little past the midpoint of the regular season in the NBA, and we’ve already seen a bunch of surprises. Teams that were expected to sink are over-performing  and new stars are rising while others continue to shine. Let’s break down what we’ve learned after the first half of the season.

Chemistry does count

Teams like the New York Knicks and the Brooklyn Nets struggled badly during the start of the season. Despite the great expectations and the potential championship runs, both New York teams failed to even sustain a playoff course earlier in the year. Thankfully for the fans of the two teams, both of them have now started to bounce back. On the other hand, teams like the Portland Trail Blazers and the Phoenix Suns have been performing way better than expected. This clearly gives us the lesson that chemistry is a big factor in a team’s success. No matter if a team has superstars onboard, if they don’t find the way to utilize all their pieces and make them work in sync, they will not be able to win games.

Paul George is a megastar; Indiana Pacers are title favorites

Lots of people around the league expected the Indiana Pacers to emerge as title contenders. In addition, lots of people around the league expected Paul George to improve his performance. Nonetheless, the entire NBA world now knows it well; Paul George is a superstar. He has reached the level of Kevin Durant and LeBron James, but of course he’ll need to continue to play like that in order to solidify his position amongst the elites of the league. The Pacers are one of the strongest favorites for the title. Together with the Miami Heat, they have the best odds to win the Larry O’Brien trophy.

It takes more than just fame to win

Those who, prior to the start of the season, saw the Los Angeles Lakers tanking raise your hands. Come on, don’t lie… We may have known that the Lakers wouldn’t be contending for the championship this season, but after all, they are the Lakers. Well, this season has clearly shown that being the Lakers says nothing when it comes to success in the NBA.

Rebuilding is a process every NBA team has to go through eventually

The Boston Celtics, Philadelphia 76ers, Orlando Magic and Milwaukee Bucks are some of the teams that currently are in a rebuilding process. No matter how good or bad a team has been during the last few seasons, this is a process that every team in the league has to experience. It’s just the way the NBA works. It’s in the hand of the management staff to make sure it lasts for a short period of time.

 Fans will always vote stars into the All-Star Game

Kobe Bryant was voted as a Western All-Star starter for the 2014 All-Star game, but he has barely played, and when he did, he performed way below his career-averages. Despite his suggestions towards the fans to vote for other, younger stars, people around the world continued to vote for him. No matter if superstar players are healthy or not, fans will always vote for superstars for the All-Star Game. That’s how our society is after all, star-driven.

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Tags: 2014 NBA All-Star Game Boston Celtics Brooklyn Nets Indiana Pacers Los Angeles Lakers Milwaukee Bucks NBA New York Knicks Orlando Magic Paul George Philadelphia 76ers Phoenix Suns Portland Trail Blazers

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