Welcome to NBA Chat with HOOPSWORLD Senior Writer Eric Pincus. I have all the questions I can handle. Thanks for participating!
Eric covers the L.A. Lakers, Clippers and NBA at large.
Hey Eric, did you expect a WAR between OKC and Lakers, if the Lakers won the series over Nuggets? Do you think the Lakers will not win versus Thunder without Metta World Peace?
Playoffs round one is almost complete – today we chat:
I don’t know if war is the right term but I hear you. It should be a tremendous series if it comes to pass. I actually have the Lakers winning it in my end-of-regular-season prediction. At this point LA would be missing Peace for one game unless the Denver series extends beyond tonight.
Its been 10 years after the “Practice” Iverson Press Conference.What a fun thing to celebrate,huh? We’re talking about Practice!
One of the all-time great NBA moments.
Your team is down 2 with 5 seconds left. You have Kemba Walker, Austin Rivers, Brandon Knight, and Bradley Beal. Who do you go to for the last shot? I’d go with Kemba because he has proven that he’s clutch and to me, he can be a great player.
Well we need to see what Rivers and Beal can do in the NBA. I have to wait to see the prospects in actual situations to judge them, but between Walker Knight is more ready today to take that shot – but Walker has it in him.
How well do you think the Spanish Assassin will come back in his second year with Minnesota after tearing his ACL? Knee injuries are big, but Rubio’s game does not seem dependent on explosiveness so it may not hurt him as much as others. Your thoughts.
I really hope he comes back fully without a loss of quickness or athleticism. I might worry more defensively where you’re in a more reactive position. Rubio can play – better than I expected him to in the NBA. Time will tell on that one.
The Dallas Mavericks allowed Tyson Chandler to walk in the offseason to free cap space for Deron Williams. Chandler then goes on to win Defensive Player of the Year. My question, do you even make that trade? It would essentially be PG – Deron Williams and C – Brandon Haywood or PG – Jason Kidd and PG – Tyson Chandler. Which pair would you rather have starting?
If they get Deron Williams AND they weren’t going to win a title this year had they kept Chandler/Barea/etc.? Then they made the right choice. I’m not sure they would have repeated and do think they have a very real chance at Deron.
Paul George is truly overrated. Everyone has this guy on the list of the NBA’s next generation of elite scorers. Fact – buddy averaged only 12 points a game this year and has done even worse in the playoffs at less than 10 a game. Yet the same old Granger card is played when this is pointed out arguing George is only 22 years old. No problem, let’s give him time to develop. But then why is everyone crowning this man king with so little statistical merit to support?
Stats don’t tell the entire story. If he’s going to emerge, than the numbers before he emerges aren’t going to reflect what’s to come. I can’t say you’re right or wrong on George but looking forward, looking back at numbers isn’t the gauge.
When will the Lakers vs. OKC series begin if the Lakers finish off Denver Tuesday night?
Best guess would be Saturday in OK City. Second-best guess would be Sunday.
Emplay, member of the Laker Band here. Fascinated by Cuban’s decision to break up a championship team for the opportunity to pair D12 and Deron. What happened to the adage “defend the title at all costs.” Is there precedent for breaking up a title team prematurely that has proven to be the right decision?
I’d have to look at some history to know if a team has done that before but Chandler got $55.4 million over four and if that was the investment – do the Mavericks win the title or do they tie money into Chandler that might limit their future? I mean, Jason Kidd, Jason Terry, Shaun Marion and even Dirk Nowitzki . . . we’re not talking about a lot of time left on those careers.
Howard got even more complicated but Deron could be the next All-Star the team builds around – and that could be a very good thing.
“the lakers are doing well so far in the playoffs but they struggle against quick paced teams. If not title this year what changes do you hear or see in the organization for 2013′…”
I would say the Nuggets are a quick-paced team – possibly quickest in the league at least if you look at points per game. The Lakers have a shot this year to win a title although I didn’t pick them to do so. Beyond this year we have a lot of questions to ask and answer. I would think the plan would be to retain Ramon Sessions and Jordan Hill. From there it’s a question of Pau Gasol – and if he’s someone they can afford to keep one more year or is it time to cash out?
These are decisions that haven’t and can’t be made yet by the Lakers.
What are the chances that the Knicks keep Mike Woodson as there head coach for next year???
Woody has a real chance but I believe the Knicks will look at some options first – including a sniff at Phil Jackson.
Rumor has it the Lakers will now try to sign Jordan Hill next season but not Ramon Sessions. Is this true? Do the Lakers have another PG in mind? Or are we going to go with blake and G-Lock?
That’s not a rumor – unless you want to claim that anything anyone writes and/or repeats is a rumor.
Here’s a Celtic questions for you. With 2 1st round pick I think we should take a big and a wing. Some of the names being mentioned are Fab Melo who I love, Arnette Moultrie who I haven’t seen but like his scouting report or another. For wing players Waiters, QMiller, Ross. The guy I really like is QMiller and it’s possible due to concern about his knee that he could slip to them. What do you think
I’m not well-versed yet in draft guys, especially those outside of the lottery. I do like the name Fab Melo and recommend him just based on that alone.
With the success that the Celts are having with this team do you think it likely that Ainge will bring back KG and Ray. I’d like to see them both signed for 2 years at less dollars to expire with Pierces contract in 2014. My reasoning is that they are still very competitve and this years FA crop is pretty poor. Also, with our 2 first round picks, we’d have the Big 3 to mentor and transition them to the NBA while still be competitve. What do you think?
The Celtics have some big decisions this summer. They may be able to get far under the cap but then there’s not a ton of free agent talent worth pursuing. If they do stick with the crew of older players, certainly they’d need to do so on a short-term basis. Perhaps save cap room for the summer of 2013?
What about a Chandler/Amare for Dwight/Baby trade this offseason?
I’m not sure I see why the Magic go there.
Do you think C Paul will commit to the Clippers after the season ends? Any indication if he’s inclined to do that? Thanks.
Not yet although from what I can tell Paul has been happy with his Clipper experience so far.
Thanks, Eric, again, for all your insight. With the Lakers exchanging its two least productive players-Kapono & walton, and a sentimental favorite whose oncourt contribution had declined and some draft poicks of uncertain vale, for Sessions, Hill & Eyenga-a solid starting point, a good, young and athletic reserve big, and a prospect, doesn’t the front office whether Kupchak or Jim Buss, or both, deserve more credit? Assuming we close out denver how do you see us faring against OKC? Would love to see a Lakers/Clippers WConference Finals!
For the most part I think the Lakers have made solid personnel decisions over recent years. Their free agents signings haven’t really panned out but in trade they always seem to find solid role players. Last year the team was burnt out. I’m not sure how far they get but certainly if they surpass last year’s exit, I’d certainly agree with you. Another second-round loss though? Is that progress?
As far as Lakers/Clippers – certainly but of course there’s selfishness there in that I’d have more personal opportunities covering both teams at STAPLES.
What is your prediction for clipps spurs series assuming they close out memphis?
My pre-playoffs prediction was Spurs in 6 over LAC. I don’t waver once I lock something in. The Clippers play the Spurs better than they ever have but I’m not sure it’s enough.
Without taking salary and c a p into consideration,pick between Reggie and kmart, foye or young to bring back next season and why?
The most expendable is Young. Does Mo Williams opt out? If so, Foye would be a solid guy to return. Reggie and Martin are both extremely valuable to what the Clippers are doing this year. In theory they’re the right enforcers to back up Griffin. It’s hard to pick apart who has meant more but technically I’d argue Martin’s defensive versatility slightly trumps Reggie’s rebounding and enthusiasm. I would say the Clipper fans at STAPLES would prefer Reggie – he’s a serious favorite there. It’d be a tough call and LAC has a lot to figure out.
Mo opting out makes things a lot easier economically.
Hi Eric thanks for the chat, Even though we got swept I still loved the fight the Jazz put up in games 3 and 4, and even though it cost us 1 draft pick and possibly another I think trhis experience will help the young guys quite a bit, I thnik it’s time for Favors to become a full time starter, if you’re the Jazz who do you move Milsap or Jefferson?
The Jazz were over-matched but they proved a lot getting to the playoffs. Favors is far-more ready than he was a year ago – which is big. It’s time for Utah to consider moving Millsap or Jefferson but it all depends on what’s offered in return. Utah needs a lot more help at guard.
4 games tonight, all series at 3-1. How many, if any, go to a game 6?
If I’m true to my word and I have Lakers in six, Celtics in seven and Bulls in six in my pre-series predictions . . . I’d have to say no close-outs. Naturally it’s hard to stick to my guns, especially in the Chicago series given I couldn’t have foreseen the Rose and Noah injuries.
I had Pacers in five so they’re on track and should wrap tonight.
Speaking hypothetical if the Lakers and Heat get bounced out and you could trade Gasol for Bosh would you do it? Why or why not?
No because the reason the Lakers trade Gasol is to change their economic picture. Paying Gasol $19 million as a third options doesn’t really work long-term under the new CBA. Swapping that to Bosh at $17.5-$22 million doesn’t exactly fix that – in fact it does the opposite.
It really seems like teams have a lot of success with just collapsing on the Lakers bigs, and forcing outside shots, which we aren’t too great at.
Thunder will no doubt employ this strategy. Is there any way to beat this type of defense, or does it just depend on making three-pointers?
I mean, it’s the defense I run with my 9-10 year old girls team. You sag in the paint and prevent field goals closer to the hoop. The only way to get around that is to hit outside shots.
If the Lakers had a different team, perhaps some variation of dribble-penetration or even pick and roll could work around that – but LA is built with two low-post All-Stars (Bynum and Gasol, formerly at least) and Kobe who also likes to get his in the post.
I know Clipper Management loves the fact that they pay DeAndre Jordan a ton of money, and he gets no run past the 3rd quarter. Right? This is counting regular season also.
Actually the Clippers invested in their team this summer. The money that went to DeAndre was more about providing the team with a center using the means they had available.
Don’t pay DeAndre and then what? Sign who in free agency for the $2.5 million room exception? Samuel Dalembert for a year? He got $7 million in the first-year from Houston.
This is something Clipper fans should be celebrating, given the history of the team. LA made the right basketball move regardless of economics – because there was no better option than DeAndre in that moment.
Jordan has helped the Clippers this year too. Just because he’s not the answer at the end of games, doesn’t mean he doesn’t. There’s a bigger picture at play on many, many levels here.
What up, Eric! Here are some questions (on behave of the Northern Californians), and I just want to see you weigh in your opinion:
Will the Warriors keep their 2012 1st round pick? And will Warriors make the playoffs?
The Warriors will keep their pick if the lottery balls favor them! If anyone below the Warriors climbs, that pick isn’t even their own to negotiate with. I still don’t have the Warriors as a playoff team. We have to see both Andrew Bogut and Steph Curry healthy first.
That pick, assuming they still have it, may be put on the block but I’m not sold that’s the right play. Let’s wait for the lottery and we can attack this issue on steadier ground.
Demar and first or Ed Davis for James harden
“No thank you,” say the Thunder.
Clippers Game 4, the energy at Staples was awesome!
Clippers really do have a real Chemistry Brewing.
Now that the Clippers look like they will move on to the 2nd Round. What do you think of the Clippers VS Spurs matchup?
I gave my prediction but in defense of the Clippers, Tony Parker as the Spurs’ best player isn’t better than CP3. The athleticism and size of LA with Blake, DeAndre, Reggie and Kenyon is a factor.
I can argue LA will win that series but there’s something about San Antonio’s execution and coaching that makes me think they have the edge but it may not be a wide gap. San Antonio is going to have moments of weakness.
If LA leaves 17 free throws on the line or the like? That’s not going to fly vs. the Spurs.
Hi Eric. Thanks for the chats, I really enjoy them.
Any idea what it will take for the Clips to re-sign Chauncey in the offseason?
An old guard, returning from a near career-ending injury shouldn’t cost too much in this new-CBA free agent market…Right?
I can’t answer this one yet because of a rule dispute I’ve got going with Larry Coon, the NBA and the Clippers. I’m researching and will report back when I get some clarity.
Hi Eric. Some Clipper game last night! My question is, why can’t the Clippers hold on to a big lead late in the 4th Q. They’re up 10 with 4:30 remaining in the game and let the Griz force OT. What issues need to be fixed to prevent this from happening again?
They’re playing a team facing elimination – or the prospect of elimination. They’re going to come with everything they have and it can be nearly impossible to deny that force. LA is young and flawed and couldn’t squash it until overtime. Winning shows they’ve grown but still, clearly, they have room to grow. The hard part is doing that on the fly and not making mistakes that cost a series against even tougher opponents.
Do you think the Nuggets can overcome a 3-1 deficit to win the series over the Lakers?
While anything is possible, no I don’t.
Which Los Angeles player is more clutch this season: CP3 or Kobe?
The numbers this season bear out that it’s actually CP3 but historically Bryant has the rings and Paul has only gotten past the first round only once.
Who is the Clippers difference-maker, not named BG or CP3?
Really in this series it’s been Reggie Evans. At times it’s been Randy Foye, Nick Young, Kenyon Martin and even Eric Bledsoe. The Clippers have gotten a great team effort but every time LA went on a run, it seemed like Reggie has something to do with it.
Does Caron Butler coming back make it more likely for the Clippers to win this series?
He’s done a solid job defending Rudy Gay, absolutely.
Will the Thunder be able to keep James Harden? He seems like he is in line for a max deal.
I’m not sure about max but he’ll get well-compensated. I see him sticking in OK City.
What do the Jazz need to do this offseason?
Guards, guards, guards . . .
If Clips win this series, is it a lock that Del Negro keeps his job next year?
I wouldn’t say a lock just yet, no.
Do we try to keep Devin Ebanks next season?
It depends on who is offering what. As a restricted free agent, Ebanks may be slightly more likely to return then leave. He’s grown on the Lakers after an underwhelming first couple of years. Circumstance has favored him with the suspension of Peace. I’m not sure Ebanks really helps the team win games with concrete action – but he hasn’t detracted from it either and sometimes that’s enough. Devin did have a great start to Game 1 which set a strong tone for the series.
How close to Dwight Howard do you think Bynum is right now? Do you think he has the potential to surpass him and be the best center in the league?
Bynum needs to keep it up. At the rate he’s going, it’s not longer a gulf between he and Dwight.
If the Lakers do not win the title, do you think it is possible that the Lakers will trade Bynum? I know Gasol will most likely be the guy moved but if Dwight recovers fully and agrees to sign long-term with LA do you think Lakers pull the trigger? While Bynum has better offensive moves than Dwight, I don’t think you can pass up D-12 (assuming he makes a full recovery of course)
I expect Bynum to get an extension in Los Angeles.
If I currently get an expanded version of cable to watch all the Lakers games, what will I have to do to watch once the Time Warner deal kicks in?
That’s not clear just yet . . .
Why is CP3 able to get almost any shot he wants against the Grizzlies defense? I would think that’s it’d be obvious for the Grizzlies to trap CP3 so someone else can score in OT especially when Griffin fouled out.
They did that to end regulation yesterday but Paul is so crafty with his dribble. He’s given the room by VDN to dominate the ball and the team throws so many screens over a 24 for CP3, it can be difficult.
Trap Paul, the team moves it around for an open look or gets it back to CP3 and he still has time to get something done. He’s a very difficult cover.
How far do you see the heat going and y is lebron hesitant to take over at times?
I had the HEAT losing to the Bulls in the ECF. Obviously that’s not going to happen. I would not be surprised if the Celtics give Miami a very hard time. I don’t have Miami winning the title but I don’t think they should be written off. They’re one of four or five teams that I believe can win this year – and maybe a favorite despite what I just said.
How do the heat shake up the roster this off season….do you see steve nash coming to miami?
I’m not sure if Nash comes for $3 million but it’s an interesting story if he does. Let’s tackle offseason for Miami after we see exactly what they have right now when it matters.
Rondo ($10 mil) for Gasol ($20 mil)
Now that LA has Sessions, it may make sense to bring back younger, cheaper size for Pau than Rondo.
ALWAYS appreciate your time. Before playoffs started, I had Memphis over LAC. After G3, I had LAC over Memphis. I hear people say Memphis KNOWS they’re the better team and just not playing their game. What do YOU think about this? I think LAC deserves much more credit – especially being able to BEAT Memphis with horrible FT%.
Thanks again for your time!
I had Clippers in six. While I like what the Grizzlies have to offer, they’re not at full strength, especially Zach. Bottom line – I have CP3 as the best player in the series and when you balance everything out, in the end he’s the one getting it done.
when ron comes back, do you still see ebanks as part of the rotation? kobe could use a breather in stretches and barnes hasn’t been the same since that ankle injury
Ebanks will probably get the backup shooting guard minutes.
What do you think the Hornets will do in the draft with there to picks and , is there a chance we will trade a player or 2 and try and get more picks?
Let’s wait for lottery, that will dictate a lot of what’s to come.
I heard from twitter Kenyon yelled “Damn it man!” at that 8.1 second time out from Vinny. Is this any indication of how poorly the players view Vinny? Or just heat of the moment kind of thing?
I have Vinny’s take on that final play here: http://www.hoopsworld.com/nba-2-clippers-look-to-advance-3 . It was one of those moments in time where the coach couldn’t know the ball was going to get into play and since LAC could advance the ball to halfcourt and have an easier go at it – the time out wasn’t that outlandish.
Kenyon was frustrated in the moment. He’s not exactly one to bite his tongue regardless of coach or situation.
Do u think the knicks can win a title if we get steve nash…. Plus where is the best fit 4 t.evans
The Knicks aren’t there yet even with Nash. I don’t see Steve in NY. Instead they give their free agent money to Lin. I don’t know where Tyreke Evans lands long-term, that’s a really tough call as well.
You have LA beating okc? Please help me see how in the world they can do it. I just don’t see it. I really want to be wrong.
I expect Peace to give Durant a hard time – and for Bryant to slow Westbrook just a notch. Perkins isn’t 100% and the Thunder haven’t really been at the best the last month. They don’t rebound especially well. OK City creates a lot of problems for the Lakers but I don’t see it as one-sided.
What would it take for the jazz to get Derron Williams back in f/a?
I think dwill is goin to dallas… What about d howard… Where is tha best fit 4 howard… Lakers?
Dwight is on the Magic and they have to trade him for him to land anywhere so for now – Orlando.
I see Lakers road to a championship this year as very hard, but not impossible. Unless something crazy happens in the other brackets they are looking at OKC, Spurs, and Heat.
I think that the only way they have a chance is if Pau becomes more aggressive and scores more. What do you think? What is the most important thing that they should do?
The Lakers need to rebound, defend, share the ball, attack and the role players need to hit open shots. If they do that game in and game out, they have the potential to beat anyone. Can they commit and execute that every night? Probably not.
Do you think Dallas is going keep me or my season was just not good enough?
And Dallas don’t want me this year do u think Toronto would be good to finish my career?
Carter’s salary is partially guaranteed. Unless they have enough reason to get further under the cap that means Vince has to go – I think they keep him around.
Quick question – if you’re the Cavs GM – do you trade Andy Varejao and their Lakers pick to acquire the Raptors pick? Raps want to compete sooner than later and Andy allows them to do that – with the additional pick, cavs could grab Drummond and build around Kyrie, Tristan Thompson, Bradley Beal (3rd pick) and Drummond.
Actually if I’m the Cavs, I keep Varejao. And Andy isn’t going to bring back a lottery pick in trade anyway. Not a high one anyway.
If you’re the Phoenix Sun and by some miracle happen to get the number one pick in the draft. Do you trade it to Portland for the Sun’s number one pick, J.Childress, H.Warick, and C.Frye for L.Aldridge, Nolan Smith, and there first two draft picks. Suns win by unloading scrap players. Portland wins by not passing up on the next Durant. What do you think.
I think you’re dreaming here. Whoever gets the number one pick is going to keep it. Anthony Davis is head and shoulders the top guy. It’s not close.
In your answer of Paul George, you argued you cannot look at past statistical evidence to predict future breakouts. Accepting this claim, what are the non-statistical factors that have Paul George so highly rated by everyone and their brother (having accomplished so little at the NBA level)?
Let’s take out the “everyone.” Some people may think George has a bright future. You can even say many think that. If you’re talking organizationally, the Pacers may believe that because of their experience working with him behind the scenes. If the Pacers can see him grow, absorb and learn? But it isn’t in games yet?
I mean look at Andrew Bynum. The Lakers stuck with him despite the numbers and injuries because ownership believed in him. Now he’s arguably the best center in the league this postseason.
Great chats, RAPS. fan. TEAM has 12 ml. to spent and BC wants to make a splash. Which teams will need to move some contract that BC will be interested?
It’s really hard to guess where certain teams go and one of them is Toronto. It’s a poor free agent in market generally speaking and we don’t truly know who is on the block just yet. I’m especially curious to see what Jonas Valanciunas looks like in the NBA alongside a healthy Andrea Bargnani. Toronto needs some help on the perimeter.
Will Lakers road games be on public (free) tv anymore?
Looks like you’ll need cable.
Could you see the Lakers going after Goran Dragic in the off season to add depth to the back court?
All LA would have to offer Dragic is $3 million a season. That’s not going to fly. Meanwhile they can pay Ramon Sessions up to the max. What seems more likely? Sessions.
What do you think of a trade with Rondo and Pierce for Melo and maybe a pick + filler?
This will have to do for the week. Once again thanks for the questions. I enjoyed it!
I don’t do that if I’m the Celtics. Boston needs size, not a major financial commitment in Melo.
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
After a slow start to the season, the Memphis Grizzlies are remembering how to close out teams in the fourth quarter.
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