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HOOPSWORLD Week In Review
Posted By Kyle Cape-Lindelin On September 1, 2013 @ 5:00 am In Main Page,NBA | No Comments
The Evolution of the NBA Three-Point Shot
By Tommy Beer
The historic 1979-80 NBA season is considered legendary, primarily because it is remembered as the year both Magic Johnson and Larry Bird entered the league as rookies. However, the three-point shot was also introduced into the NBA that same season, and while it didn’t have nearly the same impact as Magic or Larry initially, it has slowly but surely increased in importance ever since.
The rival ABA (American Basketball Association), in an attempt to create buzz and distinguish itself from the NBA, first instituted the three-point shot back in 1967. 12 years later, the NBA followed suit. The hope was that the rule change would increase excitement by preventing clogged lanes and slow, methodical play dominated by big men in the post. During that first season, the NBA implemented three’s on a “trial basis.” It wasn’t instituted as an official, permanent rule until October of 1980. Initially, it was considered an afterthought by most NBA teams. Many assumed it was more or less a gimmick that would soon be eliminated from the game.
Signing Dante Exum?
By Steve Kyler
Dante Exum isn’t just a star college recruit, there are pro teams in his native Australia that are trying to lure the 18 year old guard to the pros this season too.
The Perth Wildcats of Australia’s National Basketball League have kicked the tires on signing Exum, as most of the teams in the NBL have, but according to Wildcat’s managing director Nick Marvin, the odds don’t look good.
“We have been doing all that any smart club in the league would do to try and entice arguably the best point guard to come out of Australia since Patty Mills,” Marvin said to Shane Hope of The West Australian.
“If he plays in the NBL, we’re a 12.5 percent chance like any other team, (but) we think our chances are a bit better than that.
“It’s really up to him. We’ve made it perfectly clear that we would love to have him, but Perth’s a long way from Melbourne, so that’s probably something that will work against us.
“I don’t think he’ll make a decision for another four weeks.”
Exum is still debating on where or not he’ll play college basketball in the United States next season. He took a recruiting trip to Indiana but word is he soured pretty quickly on the college recruiting process and is leaning strongly towards coming to the NBA in July.
How Good Will Andre Drummond Be in 2013-14?
By Joel Brigham
Whether you’re a Detroit Pistons fan or just somebody getting a huge head start on game-planning for your fantasy basketball draft, the question about how big a leap Andre Drummond will make in his sophomore NBA campaign is a pretty exciting one to ask.
As a rookie, Drummond was enough of a monster at age 19 for people to start comparing him to Shaquille O’Neal and Dwight Howard, though a stress fracture in his back forced him to miss the last 22 games of the 2012-13 season. Despite sitting out for a quarter of the year, Drummond finished fourth in Rookie of the Year voting and projects to be one of the best centers in the league next season, as long as he gets the minutes increase he probably deserves.
Projections and real-life are two totally different things, however, and opinions about Drummond as a superstar are pretty split. Everyone tends to agree he’ll be good, but in SB Nation’s Top 100 Players of 2017 article this summer, they placed Drummond at No. 3, right behind LeBron James and Kevin Durant, and just ahead of Russell Westbrook, Derrick Rose, Kyrie Irving and Anthony Davis.
The Remaining Free Agents
By Alex Kennedy
The calendar is about to turn to September, which means the NBA’s free agency period has been underway for nearly two months.
While just about all of the starting-caliber players have been signed, there are still a number of notable players who are available and attainable for the veteran’s minimum.
Veterans like Richard Hamilton, Jamaal Tinsley, Stephen Jackson, Ivan Johnson, Jason Collins, DeShawn Stevenson, Sebastian Telfair, A.J. Price, Linas Kleiza and Mike James are among the free agents who remain unsigned, despite the fact that they were rotation players last season.
Players like Ronnie Brewer and Al Harrington have inked contracts in the last few weeks, but, for the most part, things have been pretty quiet on the free agency front.
At this point, only the Philadelphia 76ers and Milwaukee Bucks have significant cap room. Philadelphia has between $14.2 million and $15.4 million to spend while Milwaukee has $7.4 million in space.
David Stern: A Look Back At A 30-Year Career
By Jabari Davis
After 30 years as the longest-acting NBA commissioner, David Stern has decided to step down as of February 1, 2014. With deputy commissioner Adam Silver, reportedly a hand-picked selection of Stern himself, set to replace him, Stern will ultimately turn over the reins as one of the most successful commissioners in sports history. Stern’s association with the NBA actually started in 1966, as he was utilized as outside counsel just after graduating from Columbia Law School and passing the New York State bar examination. While every commissioner has their fair share of justifiable criticisms, Stern being no exception, there is no denying the NBA’s unparalleled expansion, globalization and innovation during his tenure.
Consider this, when Stern took office, depending upon where you lived within the United States, the playoffs and Finals were not even guaranteed to be broadcasted live. The NBA, behind the strength of the made-for-TV rivalry of Magic Johnson’s Los Angeles Lakers and Larry Bird’s Boston Celtics was already booming, but the league simply exploded in worldwide popularity under the watchful eye of Stern.
Sleeping On Bulls Might Be A Mistake
By Lang Greene
With the start of training camp roughly six weeks away you will soon be inundated with a plethora of season previews, predictions and detailed analysis.
The two-time defending champion Miami HEAT, led by the best player in the league in LeBron James are sure to receive plenty of love in the Eastern Conference. The emerging Indiana Pacers and the high payroll Brooklyn Nets are two other teams who will get their fair share of mainstream press. Out in the Western Conference, the narrative will largely center around the Los Angeles Clippers, Oklahoma City Thunder, Memphis Grizzlies and the San Antonio Spurs as the top dogs of the class.
But a team who will likely be absent at the top of most lists is a squad who may just be as dangerous as ever come playoff time in 2014.
Can Jimmer Fredette Salvage His Career?
By Travis Heath
Remember when Jimmer Fredette was all the rage? I certainly do as a scout in 2011 in Ft. Collins, Colorado sitting next to 20 others who were trying to ascertain where he should be drafted. In talking to many other people at the time (and that’s all matters because people seem to have an uncanny ability to misremember based on how a player pans out) the reviews were as mixed on him as any player I could recall in recent memory.
I hark back to one scout saying that he would be a “scoring machine” at the next level and should be a lottery pick. When I brought up my concerns about his ability to defend, these concerns were brushed off by the veteran scout with the response: “Who defends in the NBA, anyway?” I thought quietly to myself, “Only the teams that want to win championships.”
Another scout said he should be an undrafted free agent and was vastly overrated. This also felt like an overreaction in the other direction.
For Rajon Rondo, The Time Is Now
By Moke Hamilton
His gargantuan hands cradled the basketball. And, like many times prior to this point, all eyes were on him.
With the score tied up, 101-all, like many times prior to this point, he found himself with the ball in his hands and the hopes of his team on his shoulders.
Unsurprisingly, Rajon Rondo finds himself in a very similar predicament in advance of the 2013-14 NBA season—his team and the weight of a basketball-loving city, all on him.
On this day, with the defender standing in front of him before being screened, the defense, just as it had done consistently throughout the night, switched. And when Rondo rose up and fired, he nailed the 23-foot jumper that broke the tie.
Though his Boston Celtics lost Game 2 of the 2012 Eastern Conference Finals to the Miami HEAT back on that May 30th day, it became known as the night when at least some of the reservations that the NBA public maintained about Rondo ceased. En route to scoring 44 points, grabbing eight rebounds and dishing out 10 assists, Rondo converted on 16 of his 24 shot attempts. More impressively, he scored on 11 of the 13 shots he took from outside of the paint.
It was not the only all-world performance he had in which he led the Celtics, but it was the most awe-inspiring.
First Year Head Coaches Have It Rough
By Yannis Koutroupis
Next season, almost a third of the head coaches in the NBA are making their debuts in the position. Typically we see a lot of familiar faces in the coaches circle as teams give veteran head coaches second (or in some cases third or fourth) chances, but this offseason that was not the case. There is going to be a lot of new faces calling the shots from the sidelines.
There’s a lot of respect and prestige that comes with being a head coach in the NBA, and a nice fat salary on top of that. However, it’s far from glamorous. It’s life consuming and security has never been more difficult to earn or easy to lose.
That goes for every head coach in the league, but especially those who are without experience. Until they prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that they are the best coach for the position, they’re met by questions, skepticism and criticism.
This year’s large group of first-year head coaches is going to get a crash course on just how difficult life as the head signal caller in the NBA can be because they’re all walking into extremely difficult situations. Below we take a deeper look into their task at hand and just what it’s going to take for them to get through that initial probationary-like stage and into a more secure spot like Mark Jackson of the Golden State Warriors has over the last two years.
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