Join HOOPSWORLD’s Alex Kennedy for his weekly NBA chat this Sunday at 3:30 p.m. ET. Submit your questions early because this chat fills up fast!
Hey there Alex. So how real is Orl’s interest in Bledsoe and is the #2 pick included in their proposal? Afflalo still has years left on his deal while Butler is expiring. Vet+prospect for Vet+pick sounds fair. If so what pick would make sense for the clippers? I like the idea of Oladipo, defensive-specialist-tony allen-type who should be fine not being 1st option and can shoot the 3 at a reasonably good rate. What do u think? McLemore? Porter? Is #2 too high considering the contracts they have on the books already?
Thanks for submitting your questions. I had to move my chat this week because my schedule has been crazy in Miami. Let’s get started.
Orlando has made it clear that no discussions have taken place so there aren’t many details at this point, but I do think it’s something that the Magic could be interested in as the draft gets closer. Bledsoe is a special player and he could be the team’s point guard of the future. If Orlando doesn’t fall in love with any of the point guard prospects in this draft class, they may consider that.
However, the Clippers won’t trade Bledsoe until they have a long-term deal inked with Chris Paul. They don’t want to go from having two starting-caliber point guards to zero. If the Clippers do acquire that pick, I think they’d have to take a long look at all of the prospects available. A wing would likely make the most sense, with Oladipo and McLemore likely being the favorites. But a lot of things have to happen first, obviously.
with nazr, marco, nate, vlad, cook, and hamilton all expected to not return to chicago, who do you see the Bulls targeting this offseason? Obviously they need shooters. Will matt barnes do the trick? how about mike dunleavy?
As you said, the Bulls need shooters. They could also use some frontcourt depth, but I think they can address that need in the draft because there are a ton of very talented big men in this class. I expect the Bulls to do the exact same thing they did last summer: sign veterans to one-year deals so that they still have the necessary cap flexibility to attempt to sign a star in the summer of 2014.
do a mock draft of picks 15-20
Here is my latest mock draft. We drop our mock drafts every Wednesday at noon.
Hi Alex. Heard your colleague, Stephen Brotherston, is leaving Hoopsworld? Why?
He made the decision to explore other opportunities. If you reach out to him on Twitter or by email, I’m sure he’ll give you a better answer.
How likely is it that Dwight Howard and Chris Paul play together next year?
It all depends. It depends if both players want out and if they can find a better situation than the ones they have in Los Angeles. It’s possible, but I wouldn’t say it’s likely. The Atlanta Hawks can sign them both, but every other team that wants to be active in free agency (Houston Rockets, Dallas Mavericks, etc.) would have to make a move or two in order to make it work.
What’s your take on the Grizzlies coaching situation, in which they’re referring to as “major philosophical differences?” Should the Grizzlies bring back Coach Hollins?
The fact that Lionel Hollins wasn’t returning to the Grizzlies next season was the worst kept secret in the NBA last year. I started hearing that Hollins would be out several months ago. It’s no surprise. The new regime wants to go in a different direction and bring in their own coach. Hollins should have seen this coming, especially after he was openly critical of some of their decisions to the media.
Who you got, if prime lebron meets prime grant hill with both same level of supporting cast. Who’s gonna win the if they are playing for a game 7 and would a prime grant hill be able to guard lebron?
Grant Hill was a fantastic player and an even better guy, but I have to go with LeBron James. He’s just a monster. LeBron is bigger so he could post up Grant and give him some problems. I think it would be close though. And I’m sitting here with Jarrod Rudolph and he said he would take Grant.
Do you Kawhi Leonard will have a difficult time guarding Lebron?
I think Kawhi Leonard has done a terrific job. Check out this article that I wrote for USA TODAY Sports.
Can anybody stop Tony Parker?
He has turned into an incredible player. Miami has had a tough time with him, and I that will only continue throughout this series. Their best option is to put LeBron James on Parker and hope that slows him down a little bit.
Hi Alex. Can we please stop calling Miami a Big 3? Lebron James is a 4-time league MVP and the best player in the world. Dwayne Wade led his team to a championship in 2006. Chris Bosh is a top 5 PF who put up big numbers on a bad team (that surrendered 80 points to Kobe) and never led a team past the 1st round.
Yeah, they haven’t been a Big Three lately. That’s for sure.
Hi Alex. Lot’s of fuzz about D12 and where he’ll wind up. 1 team that never get’s mentioned are Twolves ? With Rubio, Love and AK47 they have a good basis and Adelman can coach big guys
Dwight Howard has made it clear that he wants to play in a large market. Also, he wants to contend for championships. The Timberwolves aren’t there yet.
How good do you think Paul George will come back next season? Does he make another leap?
I think he’ll come back even better. He’s a player who works extremely hard during the offseason. The sky is the limit for George. I do think he’ll make another leap, which will make the Pacers an even scarier team.
Granger stated he expects to start for Indiana, I just don’t see where he fits into starting squad do you? Will Indiana move him?
I think they should move him. He doesn’t fit in anymore and I have doubts that he can get back to the level that he was at prior to his injuries.
Hi Alex, hope all is great !
Please in few sentences tell me what do you think about Reggie Bullock ? I like his game and the easiness he plays with. Can you project him in the pros ? Also, can Otto Porter be close to Paul George-good ? Couple of bits worse offensively, but slightly better defensively ?
Reggie Bullock is an exceptional shooter and he has very deep range. He’s a good athlete, with solid defensive fundamentals. He also has the size and physical tools to match-up with other small forwards in the league. He needs to get stronger and work on his ballhandling, but I think he can be a very good three-point specialist in the NBA.
I don’t think Otto Porter has the same potential as Paul George. Most people around the NBA view Porter as more of a role player, a second option type player.
My two favorite duo’s in NBA are #1 Paul George + Roy HIbbert and #2 Damian Lillard + Lamarcus Aldridge. Who do you like better now and in 3 years?
I like Indiana’s duo better now and in three years, but I’m also a huge fan of Portland’s duo. Lillard is a good friend so I’m biased, but I think he’ll develop into one of the best point guards in the NBA. However, I just think George and Hibbert will be exceptional, mainly because they are capable of dominating on both ends of the floor.
Took a look at Mock 6.0 and I have the same exact 1-7 as you. I dont care who 8-12 pick because I just dont think either will take a PG(maybe DET but I seriously doubt it). With that said, I really think MCW will be there for the DAL pick. What would it take for the Magic to get that pick from DAL if MCW was there? I have read they are looking to move it for cap space. I cant see us drafting Burke with the #2, so getting MCW along with whoever we draft would be a nice complement to our sweet young crop of front court players. Any chance we do something like this?
Dallas is definitely shopping the 13th pick. That’s 100 percent true. They want to package No. 13 with Shawn Marion so that they have more cap space to be players in free agency this summer. A deal like that would make a lot of sense for Orlando, especially if Michael Carter-Williams is still on the board.
So where does Iggy now go? He said a big part of him wanting to stay in Denver was Ujiri, Karl, and a good young team… I don’t see him staying.
He may leave. We’ll see. If he does decide to leave, he would be an excellent Plan B for any of the teams that miss out on Dwight Howard and Chris Paul. That could be Atlanta, Houston, Dallas, Portland, etc. At this point in his career, I think Iguodala wants to compete for a champoionship so I could see him going to the team that can offer a lucrative deal and a chance to win.
I see that Marc Gasol and Kevin Love both come off contract in the same year unless Love picks up his option.
Could you see the Lakers chasing them down as the future?
Possible, but that’s awhile from now. Hard to predict what’s going to happen that far down the road.
Alex, would Phoenix have any interest in swapping #5 for #11 and Evan Turner if Oladipo and McLemore are both off the board? I think the Sixers woud love to somehow snag a guy like Alex Len or Anthony Bennett.
I’m not sure. It depends if Ryan McDonough falls in love with any of the players who will be there at No. 5. He’s an excellent talent evaluator, so he may want to use that pick rather than trade it.
Hi Alex. Love your chats man. Which team do you think is most likely to make a move during the draft? Seems like there are a lot teams willing to let go of their picks. Is it a buyer’s market?
As you said, there are a lot of teams that have multiple picks that are looking to move them. I think we could definitely see some moves on draft night. Teams like Memphis, Portland and Oklahoma City could let go of one of their picks.
Has there been any talk of who the 76ers may select as a head coach?
Kelvin Sampson makes a lot of sense, especially because Sam Hinkie saw the great job that he did in Houston last season, specifically when he stepped in for Kevin McHale.
Alex, do you really think the Spurs are going to win this series after stealing game 1? I mean, last year, the Heat were in the same position in terms of: Finishing off the Celtics in a grueling 7-game series, having only two days rest and then going to OKC for Game 1 and then losing that game. Then they bounce back in Game 2 and sweep OKC the rest of the way and go on to win the title. Any chance this could happen to Miami again, despite the fact Games 3-5 are in San Antonio? Here’s an interesting fact: Teams that lead 1-0 in NBA Finals before going on to lose the series by losing 4 straight games: OKC (2012), Sixers (2001), Lakers (1991)
I picked Miami in six games before the series started, and I’m sticking with that.
If the Heat fall to the Spurs in the finals, shouldn’t they amnesty Chris Bosh and sign Chris Paul or Dwight Howard?
First of all, amnestying Chris Bosh wouldn’t be the answer. If anything, they could trade him. It’s not like the guy doesn’t have any trade value. Teams only amnesty a player when they have no other options. No owner likes to sign that huge check, it’s really a last resort.
Second, even if they did get rid of Bosh, they wouldn’t have the cap space to sign a max player like Dwight Howard or Chris Bosh. Without Bosh’s contract on the books, Miami would still likely have over $60 million committed for next season. Only way Miami could land a big time free agent is if they can pull off a sign-and-trade, but I can’t see that happening. Every team would like land Howard or Paul, but it’s easier said than done.
Rumor has it that CP3 wasn’t to happy with Sterling’s comments, but I think it was most likely blown a little out of proportion. Do you think he was really upset and do you think there’s any chance he leaves the Clippers?
Even if he was upset about Sterling’s comments, it’s hard to imagine he would leave just because of that. I’ve talked to a number of players on the Clippers and they all believe that Paul will re-sign with the team. He loves Los Angeles and believes the team has the talent to contend. I can’t see him going anywhere else, especially considering he was recruiting free agents for the Clippers last summer. He wasn’t acting like a player who has one foot out the door.
Do you think there is a market out there for Jeremy Lin if the Rockets wanted to unload him to clear cap space. Perhaps a west coast team interested in benefitting from his Asian heritage.
I do think there would be a market for Jeremy Lin if, for some reason, the Rockets decided to part ways with him. Keep in mind, Lin is only 24 years old so he still has a lot of room to grow. He has been a productive player and still has some value, on and off the court.
Reports have the Magic looking to “trade down”. Do you think there is a chance they pick PG Michael Carter Williams? Do you know if MCW has/is doing a workout for the Magic? Thanks
Possible. A lot of executives are intrigued by Michael Carter-Williams. Some teams have him higher than Trey Burke on their big board. Carter-Williams is special because of his size and length. He could become a very good player in the NBA and be a match-up nightmare.
I think the Cavs fascination with McLemore is a smoke screen. He looked passive and lost during the NCAA tournament. McLemore may become a game changer in the future but he won’t be his rookie year. Now Noel, for a different reason, won’t be a game changer his rookie year either but he has the potential to be an impact player on defense in the future. It seems like the media did not watch Cleveland blow a record number of games when they had a 20 point lead. Noel would have stopped those last second uncontested drives to the hoop for the win. Drafting McLemore will not guarantee the Cavs make the playoffs next year. A healthy Varajao and another key veteran pickup is their best chance for that and I have to believe Dan Gilbert knows that. Stick to the plan and draft Noel. What’s your opinion on the best plan for the Cavs?
Couldn’t have said it better myself. I’d go with Nerlens Noel for all of the reasons that you mentioned. They need an interior presence and Noel can develop into one. I have the same concerns about McLemore and was disappointed with his play in the tournament. As I’ve said for awhile, Noel has the most potential of any player in this draft class.
Hi Alex. If Charlotte is interested in Bosh for the #4 pick, logic would dictate they would also be open to a trade for Carlos Boozer? Given Boozer is cheaper and he led his previous team beyond the 1st round (unlike Bosh), he would seem to be an attractive option.
I don’t know about that. Chris Bosh has been struggling lately, but I still think he could put up big numbers if he had his own team again. Bosh has had to make the most difficult transition and most sacrifices of the Big Three, which is part of the reason for his production dipping (not necessarily this postseason, but in general). Carlos Boozer has been on the decline and struggling for much longer. Also, you’re forgetting that Boozer is two years older than Bosh.
Thanks for all of the questions! I have to run because I have to head over to the arena for Game 2 between the Heat and Spurs. I’ll be back next week to answer more of your questions. Thanks again!
Hi Alex,where do you rank Tony Parker among the point guards of his generation? Do you think he will be in top 5 when all is said and done? Thanks
It’s always hard for me to rank guys, but I’ve been so impressed with the improvements that Tony Parker has made. He has become an exceptional player and his rings separate him from many of his peers at the point guard position. When he first entered the league, he didn’t play under control or run the offense very well. Now, he’s one of the best game managers in the NBA, still freakishly athletic and he has also improved his shot. He’s difficult to stop and, in my opinion, one of the best point guards in the league.
Select a Team
Golden State Warriors
Los Angeles Clippers
Los Angeles Lakers
New Orleans Pelicans
New York Knicks
Portland Trail Blazers
San Antonio Spurs
Select a Team
Golden State Warriors
Los Angeles Clippers
Los Angeles Lakers
New Orleans Pelicans
New York Knicks
Portland Trail Blazers
San Antonio Spurs
The New York Knicks and Brooklyn Nets sit at the bottom of the standings. Even worse? Both teams traded away their 2014 first-round pick.
10:30am - Steve Kyler
3:00pm - Yannis Koutroupis
8:00pm - Jessica Camerato
11:00am - Nate Duncan
8:00pm - Bill Ingram
12:00pm - Travis Heath***
8:00pm - Lang Greene
1:00pm - Joel Brigham
3:00pm - Jabari Davis
1:00pm - Moke Hamilton
3:00pm - Larry Coon
8:00pm - Alex Kennedy
11:00am - Susan Bible ***
*** denotes chats that are held bi-weekly