As I alluded to in the last post, four games is a tiny sampling of the NBA season. But we have to be thrilled with Okafor thus far.
A quick glance at his statistics indicates he's been playing at a high level. Duh. More interestingly, he hasn't done anything totally exceptional or unsustainable in four games.
For example, he's shot well from the floor. 54.5% from the field is pretty good, but it's less than his career high of 56.1% last year. It's also right on line with 53.5% the year before and 53.2% the year before that. Basically, 54.5% is where Emeka should be around for the year.
He's converting on 83% of free throw attempts... about 23% higher than his career rate. So that won't stand up. However, his true shooting has remained similar to last year's since he's going to the line less. So the unsustainable free throw percentage is basically a wash, not affecting his overall performance.
His offensive rebound rate- 11.2%- is .7% below his career. His defensive rebound rate is 29%, 4% higher than his career rate. But with David West's pathetic attempt at "rebounding," Okafor figures to have plenty of defensive rebounding chances.
Basically, the jump in Okafor's overall numbers (PER, etc.) may or may not be sustained through the season. It's four games. But breaking down his performance into component pieces suggests that there's nothing flukey about Okafor so far. Knock on wood that he stays healthy. But he's only going to get better with Chris Paul- I feel he's been mostly doing his own thing offensively... as he starts to play off Paul, he should only improve.
Emeka Okafor has been excellent, and we have no indications that that's going to change.