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.
Lang is Anthony Davis a center or power forward? If he can play either position, which is he better at?
What’s the word Hoop Freaks? It’s time for my weekly chat, coming to you live from Philips Arena. Another week in the books and the playoffs loom on the horizon. The blood, sweat, tears, redemption quests, the heroes, the scapegoats, there’s no time for excuses, is your squad ready for battle, tell your significant other quiet down because the game is on, this is where reputations are solidified; other reputations are diminished, legends are born and older vets make one last stand … who will emerge down the stretch? Go hard or … you know the deal … Let’s get it, let’s go …
Anthony Davis’ frame is most suited to be a power forward at the next level. I don’t think he’s physically strong enough to bang with the Bynum’s, Howard’s and Bogut’s of the world.
The kid undoubtedly has the game to make an immediate impact from day one.
LG love your work, This Boston team is reminding me of 2010 when they werent considered a title threat and then peaked at the exact right time and made a run that ended in game 7 of the finals. I know this squad isnt as good, but what chance do you give them?
I was talking with Al Jefferson on the Utah Jazz’s up and down season the other week and he said it’s better to peak late than to peak too early as a unit.
Looking at the Celtics this season it’s hard to disagree with the assessment.
But I can’t co-sign the 2010 comparison. This year’s Celtics squad is thinner than toilet tissue on the interior in terms of depth. The 2010 squad had Kendrick Perkins and Rasheed Wallace … this year’s team may see Ryan Hollins sneaking into Doc Rivers’ postseason rotation.
I can see this squad getting to the second round … but beating Chicago or Miami in a seven game series might be asking for too much. Great story though.
There has been a lot talk that the hawks are interested in taking Tony Wroten Jr in this years draft, what have you heard about this and how would he fit wtih this team?
What would this mean for Jeff teague, cause i could actually see Wroten taking Teauge spot as the starting point guard.
I saw the mock draft you’re referring to, but that is based on opinion … not inside information from the Hawks.
I like Wroten’s size … my preference slants toward bigger point guards. But he’s a young kid still learning so it’s hard for me to see the Hawks handing him the keys to their playoff offense over Jeff Teague who has been in the trenches with the club’s veterans.
From a talent standpoint it wouldn’t be a bad pickup, though I think the Hawks need to look for a small forward or backup power forward as top priority in the first round. Jeff Taylor … Royce White come to mind off the top of my head.
Which Point Guards out of John Wall, Kyrie Irving, or Brandon Jennings do you see making the All Star team first? If D-WIll goes to the mavs that would free up a spot for one of them.
Rank them right now and what do you see them doing in a few years and WHY?
Let me say this … I think John Wall has the most physical gifts out of all three … my goodness, that guy, if he ever puts it all together, is a top tier talent.
But Kyrie Irving is my pick to make an All-Star team first. The kid is so polished right out of the cereal box … and he is benefitting from having Byron Scott (good former player who has coached Chris Paul and Jason Kidd) as a coach.
BJ is tough as well, but I always say the 50+ point game as a rookie was one of the worst things to happen to the young man from an expectation standpoint.
What do you think is the weapon of the Boston Celtics in this coming playoffs despite the tons of injuries that they had this season?? Thanks, Lang.. I hope that you have an article about this coming NBA Playoffs..
Thanks for the question family. I covered the Eastern Conference playoff scene last week … here’s the link http://www.hoopsworld.com/making-the-playoffs-eastern-conference</strong
Bang it …
Hey Lang, are still standing by your opinion that Tim Duncan is no longer an All Star? My Spurs are looking great now but i know the injury bug will hit right before playoffs. Speaking of injuries, with most of the nba banged up, does this take anything away from the eventual champs( prob the Heat)?
Yes. I stick by my opinion. I think things like that through. Tim Duncan is no longer an All-Star player. He’s another casualty to the undefeated force called Father Time. But don’t confuse “no longer being an All-Star” with not being a winner. Tim Duncan is a winner and always will be. That’s why his teams are always near the top of Western Conference. I respect that guy so much. Love Tim Duncan and what he’s meant to the game.
I won’t take a solitary thing away from whoever wins the title. Injuries are part of the game. Excuses are for children. These guys are professionals and have to find a way to overcome adversity … that in and of itself shows the heart of a champion.
Hey Lang, love the chats big dawg and I definitely make it a point to check out yours when you do them.
I know they say that defense wins championships and I fully agree with that statement. You see and hear about “on the ball defense”, “perimeter defense” and “weak side defense” but people rarely talk about “transition defense”. My 90′s Bulls played superb transition defense and although they had multiple ways of killing you (especially the 94-95 and the 95-96 teams) their transition defense was superb. Teams like the Heat and Thunder (2 teams that run and score on the break superbly) thrive on their transition offense. Is it safe to think that a team with a really good transition defense could stifle the attack of these 2 teams? The Wade/James and Durant/Westbrook combos are deadly on the break and a lot of times, it seems that these 2 teams can get you for 14-22 points on on the break per game. I know that teams practice on it but do you think that transition defense gets overlooked a lot of time or doesnt get enough mention?
What’s good my man …. Life is good over here. I typically don’t post questions this long, but I can tell you thought this one out thoroughly and it isn’t a rant.
I find it surprising how little people talk about the transition defense of team defense. It’s sort of like how people gloss over the fact good free throw shooting helps the offense.
But hey, it’s the world we live in.
If you look at what the Dallas Mavericks were able to do against the Miami HEAT in the finals you’ll see a classic example of solid transition defense. Dallas simply did not allow LeBron, Wade and company to shoeshine and make posters in the open court.
I think San Antonio could make some noise in the postseason given their play in all three areas of defense. They’re extremely disciplined.
Hey Lang for a guy like Paul George was it a benefit being so raw coming into NBA that the Pacers were able to mold him into a SG to play alongside Granger?
Not really. I think George’s benefit was being able to come in and learn behind a guy like Danny Granger without the pressure on his shoulders from day one.
Hey LG, the C’s are peaking again at the right time of year, just like they did in ’10 when they pushed it to game 7 when nobody thought they would even hit the ECF. Do you give these 3 desperate vets any chance whatsoever of making a run to the finals?
I think the Celtics are going to be an extremely tough out, but I can’t see a Finals trip.
They say the last thing a fighter loses is his punching power so even in advanced age those guys have a “punchers chance” … well in the case of the Celtics guys like KG, Ray Allen and Paul Pierce still have their “skills” in the halfcourt. In the playoffs the game becomes more about halfcourt execution and rotations shrink … that’s what makes a team like Boston dangerous.
hey lang, do you see my hometown memphis making some noise in the playoffs?! for some strange reason i think atlanta is going to upset an upper echelon team in the playoffs, because after all those years of 2nd and 1st round exits, i feel like josh smith, joe johnson, and al horford are going to play with a rough edge. appreciate the the read, and keep on doing you!
Thanks brother. If you call the Orlando Magic an upper echelon team, then I can totally see it. But without Al Horford it is going to be extremely hard and damn near impossible to envision the Hawks defeat the Bulls or HEAT in a best of seven series.
Lots of people still sleeping on Memphis … even after last year … they’ll get the message soon.
Do you think Jrue Holiday available in Philly? Lots of talk of him playing SG and Turner being a PG – plus don’t forget AI and Lou Williams.
No, Jrue Holiday isn’t available. Don’t expect him to be put on the trading block. Head coach Doug Collins loves the way he’s progressed and Jrue figures to be one of the team’s building blocks.
Hey Lang. Based on what you wrote in your column today about the Cs, is this definitely the end of the “Big Three” era in Beantown, regardless of how far they go into the playoffs this year?
The Celtics currently only have $35 million in salary committed for the 2013 season. With $20+ million in cap room the team can be major players in free agency and or trade.
If they score a couple solid pieces in free agency to build on for the future and KG and Ray want to come back on vet minimum deals … I could see one more year during the transitional period.
But if you envision KG or Ray re-upping for multi-year deals in Boston, I think you’d be way off track with the assumption.
If you were KOC, what do you look for in trades at the draft and this summer for the Jazz?
Excercise team option on Tinsley. Try to flip Devin Harris (expiring) for some young talent. Re-sign Josh Howard to a vet min deal to backup Gordon. Keep playing Millsap at SF in spots to create more playing time for Favors.
Look for a PG in the late first round of draft … Marshall (UNC) or Wroten Jr (WAS) may still be on the board.
Hi lang wassup… Just wonderin who would win a game of 3 on 3 prime lebron wade and bosh vs prime penny,grant hill and juwan howard. Thanks bro!
What’s up man?
I’d go with the Miami trio. I think they win the battle at every position.
Respect to Penny, Juwan and Grant though … those guys are throwbacks to my youth!
Lang: are the hawks gonna trade horford or smoove this offseason or make another run with them? i say make another run and bank on good health. thanks
I can see the Hawks moving Smoove at next year’s deadline if they think they won’t have a chance to re-sign him. You just can’t lose a guy like Josh in free agency for a bag of dust. You have to get some value.
I don’t see the Hawks trading Horford. He’s happy in Atlanta, an All-Star and a quality young big man.
I read Rod Thorn say that Evan Turner is a PG. Holiday has regressed this season with Turner ball handling.
Raptors 2012 pick (lets say 6-8 range) and Ed Davis for Jrue Holiday and 2012 pick (say 18-20): who says no?
Turner has been playing very well as of late, but I’m not buying the PG hype if Rod said that … In 52 games this season he’s posted more than five assists just six times.
Matter of fact, his assist to turnover ratio since entering the starting lineup is woeful to say the least. Not what you would expect from a PG of the future.
Who is a better fit for the raptors for the future and why? Mkg or Harrison Barnes?
MKG. Raptors already have finesse … a guy like MKG brings tenacity, toughness and an edge. Definitely what Toronto has been lacking.
do you think to be a great coach you need players to fit your system or you adjust your system to suit your roster? Do you think the later was DToni’s downfall?
Honestly, you need a little of both.
I think D’Antoni wasn’t used to having a dominant small forward (Carmelo Anthony) in his system.
Steve Nash (PG), David Lee (PF), Amar’e Stoudemire (PF), Raymond Felton (PG) and Jeremy Lin (PG) are all guys who thrived under D’Antoni using trhe high screen / pick and roll game.
Shawn Marion (SF) did as well, but he’s a different player than Carmelo.
Melo typically creates his offense off the dribble … not off the dish.
Who has the better supporting cast? LBJ or KD?
I’d say Oklahoma City has the better supporting cast top to bottom. Yeah, without a doubt OKC gets the nod.
Who would you take in a game of two on two where you had to be siblings to compete? Reggie Miller and Cheryl Miller, Gasol Brothers, Morris Twins?
Gasol Brothers … too much size to overcome for the Millers
Joel Brigham supports players refusing to play for a certain rebuilding team as players at the end of their career should be only concerned with winning titles (as that’s what they will be remembered for). Questions: Do you agree with Brigham’s argument and refusing to report to a team (ex. Toronto) is justifiable in certain circumstances. Or do you believe NBA players are getting paid millions of dollars and should report to Siberia if needed to honor the contract signed. Your thoughts.
I’m with Joel on this one.
Critics will say that “a contract is a contract” and that means the terms and conditions should be honored for the duration. Right?
I see that line of thinking.
But let me ask you this …
How many of these guys criticizing NBA players for getting buyouts EVER paid the early termination fee to break their cell phone carrier contract to go to another service provider? How many of these critics never backed out of or tried to back out of a gym membership early after their respective situations changed? How many of these guys ever attempted to break a rental lease agreement early when they got a job in another state? How many of these critics ever called one of their financial lenders and asked to tweak their monthly payments after the originally agreed upon terms became too tough to manage?
See where I’m going with this? In business, sometimes its time to part ways or readjust on the fly … happens all day all throughout corporate america world I work in … why can’t ther players do it … I mean, after all the owners themselves AGREED to allow this stuff in the collective bargaining agreement right? Taking it back from the players would be hypocrisy … and guess what … that act would be breaking a contract (the CBA) itself. Right? LOL …
See you next week …
Speaking of overrated players, one player who truly deserves the title of most overhyped phenom is Paul George. Dude averages 12 points a game, yet EVERY media outlet heralds this guy as the next great superstar. How long can the Granger card be played to justify these stats? I’ll go against the grain and say he NEVER averages over 19 points in a single season during his career. Agree or Disagree?
What’s with the Paul George hate my man? I don’t think the guy is a phenom in the LeBron, Kevin Durant, Kober Bryant or Chris Paul sense but the kid has a strong upside.
I’m not a huge stats guy, but since you mentioned some …
Allow me to throw some stuff you way … he’s extremely efficient. He shoots 45 percent from the floor, 39 percent from three-point range and 80 percent from the free throw line.
Don’t be fooled by points scored per game … for instance Scottie Pippen is one of the greatest players ever and he only averaged over 20 points per game four times in a 17-year career.
I’m just sayin …
I understand the gamble the MAVS took by not re-sighning their FR’s but this team is headed nowhere fast. With Dwight staying in Orlando for one more year why do the MAVS think they can land D-Will when NJ can offer a better trade to aquire D-Howard?
Let’s see … playing with Dirk Nowitzki a guy who sigle handedly demolished the Miami HEAT in the finals last season winning a title (you think guys don’t notice this stuff), an owner willing to spend into the luxury and Dallas is basically his hometown.
Three compelling reasons Dallas are players here …
Of course he can go back to Brooklyn / New Jersey and play with the tandem of Gerald Wallace and Brook Lopez …
Now, I ask you what situation looks more attractive minus Dwight Howard.
Howard staying in Orlando basically delivered the Nets a major blow.
How have the Jazz conained two know knuckleheads (Howard and Tinsley) so well. They have actually turned into leaders and mentors.
Those guys totally understand as older players with diminishing skills that they’re on borrowed time … much easier for those guys to be humble now as they wind down their careers, are no longer starters and no longer making huge bucks.
Who are some young up and comming Big Time scorers in the NBA and just the NEXT BIG Thing after the Kobe, Wade, and Melo era?(instead of the obvious in Love, Durrant, Rose, and Griffin)
I see guys like Paul George, Marshon Brooks, Austin Rivers, Brandon Jennings, Demarcus Cousins, Tyreke Evans
I can see these guys putting up crazy stat lines
Monta Ellis, James Harden, Klay Thompson, DMC, Eric Gordon, Paul George, John Wall and Kemba Walker among others.
Select a Team
Golden State Warriors
Los Angeles Clippers
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New York Knicks
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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 Charlotte Bobcats have hit rock bottom and the franchise can't afford to whiff on draft day next month... Greg Oden's comeback attempt continues... Harrison Barnes strong rookie campaign complete.
11:00am - Bill Ingram
3:00pm - Stephen Brotherston
3:00pm - Alex Kennedy
8:00pm - Lang Greene
10:30am - Steve Kyler
1:30pm - Joel Brigham
11:00am - Yannis Koutroupis
3:00pm - Larry Coon
11:00am - Susan Bible
5:00pm - Derek Page