Lang Greene is a NBA Writer for HOOPSWORLD covering the Atlanta Hawks and Eastern Conference. Lang’s chat gets started at 8pm EST on Wednesday every week.
Hi, thanks for doing chat
Can the hawks keep up their current pace and make a deep postseason run?
What inspired you to be a writer?
What is your favorite memory of basketball?
What’s up Hoop Freaks? Can you believe we’re already at the quarter mark of the season? Let’s do something epic tonight.
I had my doubts entering the season (about a top 5 finish), but I think the Hawks can finish in that 5-6 range. They have played well to start the season but every team will have to endure a bump in the road. Some club’s bumps are longer than others, so it depends on how they respond when the adversity hits. You have to imagine Boston and Brooklyn putting it together and making a strong run in the standings at some point.
Don’t know if any one particular instance drove me to writing.
I have so many memories of the game, man. Here are a few.
During my playing days, I have to go back to high school. I used to see guys get “in the zone” on TV watching pro ball, but man, watching my teammate Ronald Blanford drop 35 points on the road versus a strong Don Bosco Tech team was my first introduction first hand. He went crazy that night, with a lot of those points in the clutch.
Other memories … the Fab five, 90s rivalries such as Pacers-Knicks, Bulls-Knicks, Knicks-HEAT … MJ dropping 60 on the Celtics. Bo Kimble’s free throw (shout to Hank). So many memories. I’m leaving out plenty.
Lang do you think a Danny Granger deal is coming? George needs to play SF to reach his full potential and a team like the Toronto Raptors have the flexibility and pieces to make a deal work. The Raps could send Jose Calderon and Terrence Ross to Indy in return for Granger. That would allow the Pacers to move George to SF, give them depth at PG and their bench with Calderon and a solid young 2-guard in Ross. Granger would fill a major need for the Raps at SF and his leadership would rub off on the younger Raps’ players. What do you think?
No, I don’t think a Danny Granger deal is coming. The Pacers continue to maintain he’s their guy. I’ve always believed he would eventually be shipped so Paul George can flourish, much like Metta World Peace was dealt so Granger could develop. But the deal you outlined is heavily slanted toward the Raptors. DG is a very good player and is much more valuable than this deal.
Do you think Rich Cho will make a deal involving either Gerald Henderson or Ben Gordon? With Jeff Taylor playing so well, one of those guys have become expendable. Both of these guys would provide a spark off the bench for a contending team. I could definitely see a lot of interest in Gordon. He is playing well and may choose to decline his player option if he thinks he could earn a long term deal in the offseason. What could the Cats receive for one of these two players?
Jeff Taylor has played very well for a second round pick. A very good draft choice by Charlotte here. But, let’s be realistic, the Bobcats are not trading Gerald Henderson (who they covet) or Ben Gordon (Bobcats late game scorer) for Taylor with only 20 games under his belt. That’s not the way it works. If the Bobcats could move anyone it would be Tyrus Thomas … who has zero market value at the moment.
Any moves at all you see the Rockets making at the deadline? I know there will probably be a big splash in free agency (at least an attempt at one) with The Beard here and enough cap for almost 2 max contract players. So got a clue for that too?
In my opinion, power forward is the position the Rockets will look to strengthen via trade or free agency. They have a lot of money invested at point guard (Lin), shooting guard (Beard) and center (Asik) at the moment. Chandler Parsons is developing nicely at small forward, so for my money Daryl Morey will be looking to bring in a strong guy at the four spot.
Hi Lang, love your chats. How good do you believe Gordon Hayward and Derrick Favors will be in two to three years? All stars?
Thanks for rolling with me week-to-week. Appreciate you.
Let’s see at PF the Western Conference has Blake Griffin, LaMarcus Aldridge, Kevin Love and Zach Randolph who are all All-Star level performers. I didn’t include Dirk or Tim D since you specified two or three years into the future. Also have some strong mid-level guys like David Lee and Serge Ibaka to throw in the mix. It will be tough sledding for Favors.
At SG in Western Conference you have James Harden, Eric Gordon, OJ Mayo, Andre Iguodala and Klay Thompson rising through the ranks.
So I say the path would be easier for Hayward to eventually make the jump, but not sure if he’s an All-Star caliber talent.
If Josh Smith isn’t offered a contract extension or choosing to sign elsewhere during free agency, where do you suspect he will go? (Please don’t say the Celtics!) Thanks.
Let me say that Josh and the Hawks appear to be headed toward a re-signing at the end of the season. Also, Josh would be walking away from close to $20 million by signing with another team. Much more lucrative to re-up with the Hawks, this is important to note.
I could see a team like Houston making a run at Josh … but is that situation better than the one in Atlanta? I’m not so sure.
Watsup Lang? I love ur chats man, but I gta call u out on this one. Before the season started u had the Knicks in last place in the atlantic. Now were first in the east! Wat do u have to say for urself??
I’m paid to give my opinion and not sit on the fence.
But, yes, I am eating plenty of crow this season on that pick and deservedly so, because the Knicks have been beasting. I just wasn’t sold the unit could put it all together and be a top team. I ranked them highly before the start of the 2012 season and was equally burned. I never doubted their collective talent, just the pieces of the puzzle together.
They’re doing a great job and its good to see New York back to being to the realm of relevancy.
Will Yao Ming effect happens to Lin too for All Star Votes??? Yao Always had people from China voting for him, since Lin is Chinese/Taiwanese American do you think he will get the same kind of Love from the fans over seas??? Yao actually had the All-Star talent unlike Lin but is there a possibility that Lin be ones All-Star by Votes??? What is your game on this?
Jeremy Lin is a great sports story, a story which will undoubtedly drive plenty of revenue in books and movie deals down the line. But in my opinion Lin doesn’t have the worldwide appeal Yao Ming had … and it’s not even close. I don’t see him getting more votes than Chris Paul or Russell Westbrook … especially with the numbers he’s putting up. Maybe I’d have a different topic if he was just killing it out, but he isn’t.
What’s up Lang? I’m not even a Knick’s fan and I’m scared for their fans that Amar’e Stoudemire will muck it all up for them. What u think?
I’m still not sold Amar’e and Carmelo can coexist and win consistently in the L. The key for the Knicks will be to integrate Amar’e back into the rotation slowly … possibly in a reserve role. The way the Knicks are playing though, I don’t think Amar’e will come back trying to put up 20/10. When things are going well, guys are more likely to adjust their games to keep the good times rolling.
Ok since K-Love seems to be getting frusterated with the T-wolves what do u think about this trade
K-Love JJ barea
Gasol Tyreke evans
Derrick Williams + Draft picks
I can’t buy these cupcakes.
Marcin Gortat to the Celtics for Lee, Melo, and a first round pick.
Suns get a needed shooting guard and good assets. The Celtics get a very good starting center. Both sides win right?
I can’t get with this one either. Celtics would be clear winners here.
Marcin Gortat is not an elite center, but he’s arguably top 10 in the league. You want to package him in a deal which nets you Courtney Lee, Fab Melo (has he even played yet) and a first round draft pick in the 20s? No way will Phoenix even listen to this one.
Do you think LaMarcus Aldridge will wait on Lillard to turn elite (he seems well on his way) and for Blazers to get him some help, or that he’ll leave or request a trade when his contract is in the last year…
The Blazers will be fine. Aldridge, Lillard, and Batum are a solid start to something good. Front office just needs to make some tweaks and they’ll be back to the postseason mix next season.
42pts on 16-28 FGs vs Cavs, Kobe put in work!
Over last 5 game he’s avg 35ppg, 4rpg, and 3.6apg while Howard is avg 17.4ppg, 14.8rpg, and 2.5bpg. As fan it hurts watching my team’s stars put up crazy numbers in embarrassing defeat game after game (minus Kobe’s defense). If you saw those numbers in a vacuum, you’d never guess they went 1-4. At some point Lakers actually need to WIN games…
First of all, Kobe is putting in that work.
Next, I have spoken to plenty of veterans around the league and they mostly all agree that it is better to peak late rather than peaking too early. Despite all of the struggles, the Lakers are still in the playoff hunt – just a couple games out at the moment.
Once Steve Nash and Pau Gasol return, the team will hit a decent stride. Not saying they’ll win 80 percent of their games, but they’ll be tough to beat.
People forget how bad the Lakers looked last year before they added Ramon Sessions. I totally expected them to struggle mightily without Nash running the point.
D’antoni has said something like getting Nash back is the Key to the Lakers success?
Kobe, Dwight, Pau, Metta World Chaos…. and the fulcrum of the team’s success is a banged up 38 year old PG that can’t play a lick of D with lots of miles on the NBA odometer… with no viable back up?
Who thought this up, Kupchak? The Buss’ should fire him for cause. Look at what a 100M dollar pay-roll get’s ya? What are they going to do in the PO’s when Nash has to “D” up Parker or Westbrook?
You may find it strange and I agree to a point, that on paper it doesn’t make much sense, but yes, a 38 year old aging point guard who isn’t the strongest defender IS INDEED the key in Los Angeles.
Nash is all of those things you mentioned but let me remind you he is a first ballot future Hall of Famer and an extremely smart basketball player … who is very adept at making his teammates better by getting them the ball where they can maximize their gifts.
Hello Lang. Which you think would be the best trade scenario for Lakers? What about firing ‘again’ the coach and bring back Phil?
I say enough with all of the changes. It is time to sit back and be patient. Let things work themselves out. While I no longer think this is a championship team, I still fully expect the Lakers to reach the playoffs and be a tough out for anyone – if completely healthy.
How bout them Dubs?! Do we finally see a Ws in the All Star Game? How high did u have them before the season? Also does Bogut fit in perfectly when he comes back from rehab
What’s good E? Call me Lang.
I thought highly of the Warriors if they could stay healthy. Turns out, Andrew Bogut hasn’t been able to stay on the floor but the squad is still winning. I think Bogut fits fine and adds a different element, more of a traditional element due to his size and defensive ability.
If Stephen Curry keeps playing like he has been recently, the coaches might look his way for an All-Star berth.
Since Varejao’s trade value is at an all time high what would you think of trading him to the Celtics for a deal similar to this.
Celtics- Varejao, Miles
Cavaliers- Green, Bradley, Sullinger and 1st round pick.
This moves adds more youth with high potential around Irving while also adding a solid starting SF in Green who is a young veteran still with lots of potential. Doc said he could be a star. Bradley pushes Waiters to be better while Sullinger does the same for Thompson. This also will help them tank more this season developing their youth while almost guaranteeing a top 3 pick from their record and a top 20 pick from the Celtics. Plus they still would have a lot of cap space.
For the Celtics this allows KG to swtich to his more natural 4 with Varejao at the 5. It improves their terrible rebounding considerably and gives them a solid backup wing player in Miles. Their championship contender window stays open this year and the next 2 with this current 4 player core. Plus don’t you think Dan Gilbert would love to help stop Lebron from winning another championship with this trade? haha thoughts?
I don’t usually post questions this long, but I appreciate you sending one in. It takes two to tangle when it comes to trading. Both parties are looking to improve in deals. In your scenario above, the Cavs get worse and extend their rebuild by 2-3 seasons, while the Celtics extend their championship window.
Read that last sentence again. The Cavs trade an all-star center (possibly) for Jeff Green who hasn’t looked like Jeff Green since he got dealt from OKC, an injured Avery Bradley, Sullinger and a late 20s first round pick? Can’t see it. Makes sense for Boston … very little for Cleveland.
With the Spurs playing tonight, any chance that Pop rests his big 3 tomorrow to give my Blazers a fighting chance?
I totally think the Spurs will continue to rest guys when they see fit, but I fully expect the Blazers to get the full onslaught in their next meeting. Lol.
How come the hawks refuse to trade josh smith?I heard last year that smith hates to be on the hawks because the hawks use him as a scapegoat if something is wrong and smith was frustrated by it. Also smith is like jr smith, delonte west more or less. He takes too many threes even when coach advises him to shoot less, he cant make free throws, has a lot of games with under 30 percent shooting.good player but bad iq.
You’re missing the ball on where things are right now with Josh Smith. He is happy with the direction of the franchise and has gone public numerous times this season saying he wants to be in Atlanta long term. If the relationship sours before the deadline then I expect the Hawks will look to move him and bring in assets. But I highly doubt it at this point.
Also, Smith doesn’t have a bad basketball IQ. He has great basketball instincts overall but not the greatest shot selection. There’s a difference in the two. Smith is excellent at reading opposing offenses and providing help defense to his teammates. He’s a crafty scorer in the post and fills out the fast break lane very well.
This isn’t a JR Smith or Delonte West situation. Not even close.
Can the HEAT make any deals to help defensively
The HEAT are what you see right now. Don’t expect anything major from them.
Can the HEAT acquire Jose Calderon any way maybe trade Joel Anthony Mario chalmera and dexter pitman for him
I don’t believe the salaries match in what you’re proposing … but it won’t happen regardless because Toronto values Calderon much more than the package you outlined.
What’s your take on Joe Johnson’s subpar play so far? I know he’s playing a lot of minutes & he’s 31 now but is it Avery’s playbook or something else we’re not seeing?
This is who Joe Johnson is at this point. Aging, but still playing at a very high level. Just isn’t a dominant offensive juggernaut on a nightly basis anymore.
Whats good Lang, glad to see your back this week.
1. I wasn’t to sure about Kover at 1st but the guy does shoot the rock well
2. The Hawks need that killer wing player who do they go get
3. Josh and Al Plays pretty well togather in my opinion and there’s not that many true centers anymore maybe 5 or 6 at the most why does people keep trying to seperate the two
What’s up 3Q? Hope you’re doing well.
1. Total pro. Very vocal on the defensive side of the ball. Elite range on his jumper. Just a great pickup for the Hawks.
2. Not sure if they can get a dominant wing, but maybe someone in the Wilson Chandler talent range.
3. No one would bring anything up if Horford wasn’t so vocal about wanting to play power forward, a spot Josh Smith plays best. Those comments spark the discussion.
Brooklyn is losing games they aren’t so supposed to & i think it’s because they are playing with a small frontcourt. They’re carrying the max of 15 players right now but do you think they’ll sign or trade for another big?
A lot of Brooklyn’s struggles has to do with the lack of team chemistry. They’ll get better the more games they play together. Not sure if making a drastic move fixes what is ailing them right now.
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Golden State Warriors
Los Angeles Clippers
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Select a Team
Golden State Warriors
Los Angeles Clippers
Los Angeles Lakers
New Orleans Pelicans
New York Knicks
Portland Trail Blazers
San Antonio Spurs
Lang’s chat begins Wednesday night at 8:00pm EST. Get your questions in now, everything NBA related is up for discussion.
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