Join Joel Brigham this Thursday at 3pm ET to chat about all things NBA, from trade rumors to injury issues and fantasy rosters. We’ll cover it all, so get your questions in early, and be back here Thursday afternoon to take part in all the fun.
Joel, my man, what we all love is a fresh trade scenario … Lakers send Gasol to the Raptors for Calderone and Bargnani. Lakers get a stretch 4 at $10M per season and an expiring contract and off-load Gasol’s big contract. Both teams win in the deal as the Raps get an all-star veteran to add to the young core and he’s from europe bro!
Good afternoon HOOPSWORLD Citizens, and welcome to another edition of my weekly chat. Basketball has been surprising in so many ways these first few weeks of the season, but I’ll be honest, I’ve spent the majority of my free time the last few nights tinkering my fantasy football team ahead of the trade deadline and reading “The Walking Dead” comic books. I’m only three or four issues away from being caught up, and I’ve got to tell you guys, I’m a big fan. Comic and the show. Amazing entertainment all the way around, and yes, I consider Robert Kirkman a genius. Can’t get enough right now.
But you guys probably can because this is a basketball chat, not a zombie lovefest. So I’ll shut up and get to the questions…
Since it’s a Raptors fan, I’ll assume that you’re throwing this out there because you like the deal, and really I don’t see much of a reason why Raps fans wouldn’t. The idea of dangling Calderon for a star at a different position has to be really enticing right now since A.) Kyle Lowry looked like the best point guard in the league before he got hurt, and should continue to be great when he gets back, and B.) Calderon has been great in Lowry’s absence and would be a perfect candidate to sell high right now. I have no qualms including Bargnani in that, too, but I have no idea how the contracts match up without looking. On paper, seems fair.
That said, the Lakers aren’t giving up on their season or their gifted seven-footer just yet, especially not know that they’ve got the most gifted offensive NBA coach of the last two decades at the helm. They’re going to want to see what they’ve got and how they’ll do in the postseason, so while Pau has admittedly been a bit of a disappointment so far, I don’t get the impression that the Lakers are looking to offload him. Fun idea for T-Dot, not so much in Lalawood.
Is Frank Vogel’s seat starting to get a little hot in Indiana?
I hope not, because I really do think Frank is a solid young coach. Believe it or not, losing Danny Granger was a massive stomach punch to those guys. I talked to both Paul George and Roy Hibbert last weekend about how everyone took the news and they were devastated just talking about it. George even went on to admit that they’re having a hard time adjusting offensively when that big an offensive presence just no longer is part of the team. I think that injury shell-shocked them a bit, and I think they’re a young team feeling the pressure of high expectations. It’s a long season, and they’re going to get better. There are some very good players here, after all. But I’m not selling Vogel yet. He’s a smart guy, and I’m anxious to see how he gets his boys out of their funk.
Is it me or doesn’t this Knicks squad feel like there is maybe one missing piece to the puzzle aside from amare and iman?
It almost seems like Amar’e is a piece to a different puzzle that someone dumped in this box, and we’re doing a really good job putting the puzzle together, but we keep looking over that Amar’e-shaped piece that we have this sick feeling doesn’t belong. By the time he’s healthy, we’ll be staring at this odd-shaped piece and trying to jam into a spot where it just doesn’t fit, and that’s where I see the wheels coming off this thing. Carmelo’s better at the four, which means the Knicks are better without Stoudemire. Sad. True.
But are they missing a piece? Of course they are. Any team who doesn’t have LeBron James is missing the LeBron James piece. He’s going to make it impossible to see anybody but the HEAT as a favorite to win the East, which is going to always make the Knicks look second-best, like they’re missing something. It’d be like putting the prettiest girl you knew in high school up against Brooklyn Decker. She’d still be hot, but not Brooklyn Decker hot. You know?
Joel my man what’s up where do the bulls go its very obvious that a real go to guy is needed what do you think they should I hate that their organization is afraid to take a risk also when will mirotic be coming over and how different do you think the team will look then
They do need a go-to scorer. Someone who can take over in the fourth quarter and not let comebacks happen like the one that occurred in Phoenix last night. Maybe that could fill that role with something that rhymes with Schmerrick Nose? They’ve honestly got nothing to do but wait. If they can win 5 out of every 8 games until Rose gets back, though, they’ll make the playoffs soundly and be a major headache with a healthy Rose back in the fold.
Mirotic probably isn’t coming to Chicago until 2014-2015, which will be just in time for the team to amnesty the last year of Carlos Boozer’s contract. That timing will work out perfectly for them, and even if they wanted Mirotic sooner, his contract buyout is just too massive. This season and next, he’s probably going to stay in Europe.
When the Lakers play the Heat, do you think playing zone defense against the Heat is a good idea? I was thinking a strategy the Heat might use is to camp Bosh out at the 3 point line to take Dwight out of the paint. Same with Shane B., he would pull Pau out too. Then the lane’s wide open for LeBron. Your thoughts?
You plan zone against the HEAT, you know what happens? Ray Allen in the corner.
The current Bulls team is mediocre at best… What do you see bulls management doing after the end of this season to improve the roster? I cant believe they let Asik go , they should have resigned him , now if Noah goes down with an injury they are in trouble.
They didn’t re-sign Asik because they couldn’t have afforded Taj Gibson AND him. They chose the guy they felt had the higher ceiling and who filled more a need for them in Gibson, and I think they made the right call. They could literally dump Boozer whenever they want now and know they had a starting-quality power forward to step right in. Should they amnesty him in the summer of 2014, Gibson’s the perfect stop-gap for Mirotic. They wanted him for the long-term rotation more than the one-dimensional Asik, and I get that.
As for what they’re going to do in order to make themselves better, the answer is not a whole lot. They’re waiting for Derrick. That’s what they’re doing. Can’t say that’s all that awful a plan, anyway. The team is like a million times better when he’s playing. Maybe even a contender. So they’ll wait, and that’s probably the right way to handle it for now.
With Landry Fields out indefinetly and Allen Anderson out for another while, why isn’t colangelo trying to snatch up Pietrus? I think he would be a great pickup for the raps and could even start at the SF. They need help there before it gets too late.
Can’t believe Pietrus is still out there. Doesn’t make any sense, especially if he’d be willing to sign a minimum deal. How is he not more valuable than like 75% of what teams already have outside of their top six? Raps would be a good fit, but I haven’t heard anything about any interest from them for Pietrus, unfortunately.
Even with the coaching change in LA, I don’t think Dantoni can help improve the Laker’s bench. A lot of people are talking about a championship for the Lakers but I don’t think they can match other contenders like the clippers, celtics and heat with their second unit. What about a trade where Lakers move Gasol for Wilson Chandler and Danilo Gallinari. They just move Antwan Jamison into the starting spot and have Chandler and Gallinari come of the bench. It gives LA some shooting and athleticism while Denver gets a player who can execute in the half court and is still capable of running with the rest of their starters (Faried, McGee, Lawson, Iguodala).
This one doesn’t work for me for either team, really. L.A. shouldn’t be looking to trade two fifty-cent pieces for a dollar bill for all the reasons I’ve already mentioned today. They just got a new coach and need to see what this core is capable of before they make any drastic moves.
I also don’t think Denver–who might be the deepest team in the league–is looking to sacrifice their own depth to satisfy a position they’ve pretty much got locked down with Faried and McGee. You don’t want to take minutes away from those guys and Gasol would take a TON of minutes away from those guys. The trade you’re proposing seems fair, but I don’t think either team would dig it.
What would you vision as the rotation for Toronto idealistically. Who is coming off the bench with a significant amount of minutes, and who remains seated?
Lots of Raptors questions today. Well, assuming everybody’s healthy, I think you want hefty doses of Lowry, DeRozan, Bargs, and Valanciunas. Fields is your best bet at small forward, but we obviously can’t help that he’s out for a while. Amir and Ed Davis need minutes off the bench. Aaron Gray is serviceable. Calderon is obviously starter quality. I’m not loving Terrence Ross (hated the pick in June, actually), and JLIII is fun in small doses. In short, the starters need to be on the floor as much as possible. Only depth I see is at power forward and point guard.
Hello Mr. Brigham,
Is it possible that my beloved Spurs have a shot to get at least one more ring with their big 3?
I’m pretty sure the Spurs have finished with the best record in the Western Conference for the last two years, so they obviously aren’t too old to beat the crud out of their conference. Tony Parker is fantastic, Duncan is playing with way more youthful energy than any of us thought possible, and of course they’re still super deep with plenty of Popovich guys that know how to thrive in his system. I see no reason why they shouldn’t be considered realistic contenders, but they’ve got the HEAT to get through, and the Lakers and Thunder won’t be easy to beat, either. A chance, yes. A good chance, I don’t know.
What do you think of the Wolves so far? To me they are the smartest and most cohesive team in the league.
And that’s without Love and Rubio! Healthy, this is one of my favorite teams in the league. I think Kirilenko was a great edition, and I’ve enjoyed watching Derrick Williams finally come to realize a little bit of the potential that got him drafted second overall a couple of years ago. Roy and AK47 are tremendously stabilizing presences in that locker room, and Rick Adelman is one of the best and smartest coaches in the entire league. It’s not a surprise that the Wolves are respectable even without their studs. Love Alexy Shved and Nik Pekovic, and I can’t wait for K-Love and Ricky to find their way back to the court. This is going to be a really fun team once they get their ducks all in a row. They’re actually kind of fun right now.
(Losing Budinger and his three-point shooting sucks, though… one more injury to a team that just can’t seem to get a break–no pun intended–this season).
hey joel how have u been q can clippers get past the rest of the west to reach the finals they look good so far and could melo get mvp this year
thanks again for all your great work
If Carmelo plays all year without Stoudemire, I think he’ll be in the conversation, but that probably isn’t going to be the case. He does have these great stretches, but he’s also prone to silliness at times, and that may ruin his chances. That and LeBron James and Kevin Durant.
As for the Clippers making the Finals, I wouldn’t put any money on it, but talent-wise they’re as good as anybody in the West. The Lakers have been underwhelming, the Thunder just don’t look the same without Harden, and the Spurs are steady but don’t have a knockout punch. Still, with Vinny Del Negro coaching the team, I don’t see them getting the better of some of the more weathered veteran playoff coaches. I say no to the Finals if only because of VDN.
So I’m guessing that the best sencerio is amare coming off the bench and iman shumpert he’ll need to up his avg ppg to maybe 12-15 to even consider going to the finals this year or we could try to trade amare and get a 1st round pick and some garbage players?
I’m for trading Amar’e, but no one is going to take on that contract with those knees. Bringing him off the bench would be ideal, but that’s only if you can convince a $100 million ego that you no longer want him in as a starter. Stoudemire isn’t going to be having that, so he’ll start, and it will be bad, and the Knicks will digress.
And of course, if Shumpert could get his scoring up when he returns, that would be great. But Shumpert is a long way from coming back. Best to forget all about him until the Spring. Then we comes back, it’ll just be a pleasant surprise.
Love the chats.
Is there any way the heat can trade/amnesty mike miller or Joel Anthony who make $10 mil total for each of the next free years? I kno Miami are still deep in the tax but paying that much to 2 guys who barely crack the rotation when they need a big seems silly to me!
Using amnesty on Miller makes the most sense, but they can’t do it right now. They’ll have to wait until next season, though, because the deadline for using it this season already passed. Even if they use it next summer, though, it’ll save them almost $13 million, though I doubt that gets them enough cash to reinvest in another point guard or big. They’ll still be paying tax even with the break. But as long as they have LeBron healthy, everything will be alright for the HEAT. I don’t think anybody is particularly worried about them right now.
The success of Adrian Peterson returning from an ACL and MCL injury this season has to give some hope to Bull’s fans. Rose seems to be the same type of driven individual as Peterson is. AP was hurt around Christmas (with a worse injury as well ACL and MCL) and played in Week 1, approximately 8 months later. Could you see Rose hitting that same mark and coming back in mid January? I can’t completely confirm this but it seems like they both opted for the patella graft over the hamstring graft in surgery.
I keep hearing March, March, March, so for now that’s what I’m rolling with. Apparently, though, Derrick himself doesn’t even know when it’ll be good to go. All he can do (which is probably pretty close to what AP did) is work as hard as possible and hope for the best. As a Bulls fan, though, I’d be lying if I said Peterson’s return didn’t impress me. Not only does he seem fine, but he’s the best RB in football. Very promising for D-Rose who uses his leg muscles in a very similar way to AP.
All this Paul George breakout seemed a little premature to me. Now with Granger out all those people begging to trade him to give George the SF spot must be kicking them selves. He looks awful in a feature role.
He hasn’t looked awful, but he hasn’t looked as immediately amazing as we all thought he’d be. I think he’s working at it, and I feel confident he’ll figure out how to explode onto the scene sometime in the not-too-distant future. We’ve seen a flashes of it this season, but it’d be nicer to see him be more officient offensively. Great kid, though, and really hoping he does well.
Hey Joel, Any thoughts about the Bucks fast start? What do you think the key has been, and can they keep it up?
The Bucks have been fantastic, but I kind of had a feeling that they would be.backcourt offense is excellent, and the frontcourt defensive is solid, too. Ilyasova has been a bit of a let-down, but for the most part I’ve really enjoyed watching the Bucks play, and I really hope they keep it up. Whether or not they do, though, is anybody’s guess. An 82-game season is a fickle thing, and it goes on for a while. A lot can happen, so hopefully it’s good things for the Bucks.
Well folks, that’s my hour for today! Thanks for all the great questions, and please come back for more of the same next Thursday afternoon. In the meantime, have a great afternoon, and go Bulls!
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Chicago doesn't looked primed to spend big money in free agency this summer, so how can they stay among the East's elite?
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10:30am - Steve Kyler
1:30pm - Joel Brigham
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3:00pm - Larry Coon
11:00am - Susan Bible
5:00pm - Derek Page