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.
People seem to like comparing Damian Lillard to Rose and Westbrook and I do not see that at all. I see more of a Mike Conley in him. What’s your take?
Hoop Freaks! Where’s my theme music? Every super writer needs some theme music – haha … The King has been crowned in Miami. The OKC Thunder have arrived earlier than expected. The draft is upon us tomorrow night. And beginning July 1, free agency will begin. As my college roommate Tiant Nettles (RIP) used to say – “So Citing” … Let’s go …
I’ve watched plenty of footage of Damian Lillard, but I’m not going to anoint him the next Derrick Rose or Russell Westbrook. Those two guys are top five in the NBA at their position (PG). He could turn into a very good player down the line though, but the Rose/Westbrook comparison is probably taking the youngster into deep waters he’s not ready to swim in yet.
Here’s something else to consider …
This year’s point guard class is eerily weak. It reminds me of the point guard crop of the 1997 draft where Chauncey Billups, Antonio Daniels and Brevin Knight were all selected in the top 16.
Remember Daniels raced up draft boards after putting up 24 points and 7 assists per game in his last season at Bowling Green University? He never become a huge scorer and distributor at the pro level. And in Billups case, teams gave up on him early before he eventually found his niche.
My point is it is way too early for those types of comparisons.
Any idea w/c rookies interest the C’s for their 21st & 22nd pick? R. White, Sullinger (if he drops to them), Nicholson, J Taylor?
Something is telling me the Celtics look for size at those spots. So I’m guessing frontcourt. If Jared Sullinger falls to No. 21 … I think Boston grabs him. I think they also take a hard look at Royce White if he’s still on the board and Syracuse’s Fab Melo at center.
Lang my man! I have been following your chats in the far east (China). Gotta ask what you think if that the C’s will try to acquire JET if Ray-Ray doesn’t re-up with the Cs.
All due respect to the JET (Jason Terry), but if the Celtics are going to pony up the dough Terry wants, they might as well bring back Ray Allen for another go round. Even in his advanced age, Allen is still the much better player plus he already KNOWS Doc Rivers’ system and wouldn’t have to go through an adjustment period.
Why does Bill Simmons continue to “refer” to the Thunder as “Zombies”? It’s childish at best, or some sort of vendetta at worst?
“We” get it already, you don’t approve of way the team was moved.
KD, RW, JH, KP, NC, etc… centainly aren’t “Zombies”. By all reports this team is run as well as any in league. They didn’t choose this situation. Cuss Clay Bennett all you want..
It’s “below” a world class journalist as far as I’m concerned. If I were a Thunder player I would scoff at giving him an interview wouldn’t you?
I read Bill from time to time, but I’m unfamiliar with the context he uses the term “zombie sonics” to give you a detailed opinion on your question.
is there anybody intrested in blatche?Whole dc want him out and he wnt out too.Would phoenix accept childres for blatche swap?
Here’s the thing … if you want something out of your organization so bad, why should I be interested in taking on the burden? That’s the dilemma Washington faces trying to deal Blatche. The guy is undeniably talented but seems much more interested in the outside perks the game brings (like the fame and attention) and less interested in honing his skill set.
To answer your question, Phoenix stays away from this deal.
any possibility of hornets getting rid of lewis other than buyout? anyone wanting cap space that would offer something at least decent?
Lewis will be bought out. The Hornets made the deal for financial savings, not to swing him for more assets.
Do you think that NOLA would trade #10 for Milsap straight up? The Jazz could use the pick on Marshall, I think the Jazz need a pure point guard then a shooter.
New Orleans is about to select Anthony Davis with the No. 1 overall pick of the draft. Davis projects to be a power forward in the NBA. Paul Millsap is one of the game’s most underrated power forwards. Not sure why the Hornets would create a logjam for playing time with their star rookie by bringing in another power forward who wants minutes.
The Jazz may need the No. 10 pick, but don’t expect the Hornets to help them “just because” … definitely not how the game works.
Whats good Lang? Hope all is well. Here my weekly three (Lol)
1. Josh Smith wants to be traded because management to him wasn’t committed to winning, With the hire of Ferry (Total control) does this change his perception
2. What in your opinion will be Ferry statement move concerning the roster
3. What do you think about Tony Wroten Jr as a combo gaurd off the bench (Kid is nice, just need that seasoning like MaMa’s fried chicken)
The Q-Man in the building …
1. The arrival of Ferry alone won’t change Josh’s mind. Also not sure how Josh was concerned the team isn’t focused on winning. Atlanta could have blown up the core in 2010 and started fresh but opted to give everyone big deals (Marvin, Bibby, Johnson, Horford, etc.) There’s a difference from being committed to winning and making the “right” moves to win MORE.
2. Two things I see Ferry doing … trading Josh Smith and ultimately replacing Larry Drew and bringing in a “name” coach.
3. I like Tony Wroten’s size and athleticism at point guard, but my goodness his jumper needs big time work before he’s ready for prime minutes at the NBA level.
Hey Mate, do you see why their is so much hype over Beal in the draft? Sure his talented but i think he is overrated, if he gets picked before Robinson i am going to be p!$$ed. Also what do you think about Charlotte trying to trade their pic/thinking about drafting Barnes with 2 pick?
It depends on the slot. The Bobcats at No. 2 make sense for Thomas Robinson. With Ben Gordon, Kemba Walker, Gerald Henderson under contract it wouldn’t make sense to bring on Beal.
But with Washington and Cleveland at No. 3 and 4, choosing Beal over Robinson would make good sense. The Wizards just acquired Emeka Okafor and have Nene already. Plus the underperforming Andray Blatche. They don’t need a PF. And Cleveland invested a lottery pick in Tristan Thompson (PF) last year, so the need for Robinson there is also low.
For the record, I’m huge on Beal right now. He had a great stroke and the way he hits the board could translate to the pro level.
1. Will Pop break up Duncan, Ginobili and Parker? I personally would LOVE to see them acquire Kaman. He is the final piece of the puzzle.
2. Which team will win Euro2012?
What’s the deal P?
1. No. San Antonio isn’t going to break up their core. Can’t see it.
2. I’m going with Germany.
ur thoughts on the ben gordon-magette swap?who won that trade?
My initial impression was Detroit because they were able to get out of the extra year of Gordon’s hefty contract. But as I think about it more, the Bobcats add another first rounder and bring in a guy who can score. I watched a lot of Charlotte basketball last season (I know my life must be boring) and one thing they needed was a guy who could put the ball in the basket.
Well, Gordon fits that role big time. He can just go out and score buckets for a team who NEEDS him to … I think he does well there.
Toss up … both teams are trying to do completely different things with their moves here.
Langyy!! what’s happening mate? My question for you is would you think that Gay or Iguadola would be an upgrade in Indiana if you sent Granger out to either of their teams? And where would you seed Toronto if they were able to add someone like Nash and Gay on their roster?
Overall I think Rudy Gay is a better player than Danny Granger, but Granger fits better in Indiana’s system and what they’re trying to do offensively. Take away Granger and their outside shooting takes a tremendous hit, especially from deep. Gay and Iguodala are not prolific from downtown.
When a team works out a potential draft pick, how do they measure a cant miss prospect? Is it just based off of drills, one on one?
I think “can’t miss” prospects are already identified before the pre-draft workouts take place.
The pre-draft workouts are used by teams to put players through their team specific drills and allow coaches to get comfortable with them. Teams also look to see how players tend to perform when tired / at the point of exhaustion during these one-on-one workouts because there is no hiding. Basically allows team to also dictate PACE of workout as well. Word out of Charlotte was the Bobcats were really pushing the tempo making things a track meet. You can learn a lot about guys in these uncontrolled situations.
What are your thoughts on the recent Bobcats/Pistons trade that sent Ben Gordon and a 1st rounder to Charlotte in return for Corey Maggette? I know the 1st rounder is lottery protected in 2013, but do you know what the implications could be for 2014? No way the Pistons make the playoffs next season. Thanks!
As I stated earlier it is a toss up. Charlotte gets a first rounder and a guy in Ben Gordon who will score buckets for them at a high clip.
The Pistons get off of Ben Gordon’s large contract and create salary cap room for next season to potentially attract some free agents to join their crew.
What’s the better move for the rockets? Going after Dwight and hoping he stays? Or getting a couple top 10 picks and using them for ourselves and try to trade for someone like josh smith or tyreke Evans
Can’t blame the Rockets for trying. In life the more positive assets you acquire … eventually you’ll make a positive ROI (return on investment). That’s what the Rockets are trying to do .. whether it’s Dwight Howard right now or a star at the trade deadline, they’re assembling the parts to be players in something huge.
What moves do you see the hawks doing in trades and the draft?
Hawks are definitely looking to draft a rotation guy. At No. 23 that’s going to be very difficult, but after speaking with Larry Drew this week it appears they have a couple guys in mind who would fit their system.
A guy like Fab Melo would add size behind Horford and Pachulia. So would Festus Ezeli. Jeff Taylor and Will Barton on the wing also could add depth behind Marvin Williams.
Hey Lang. When was the last time anybody talked to Kevin Garnett? The last time I saw him was when he walked out during the final seconds of Game 7 against the Heat. When will his decision be made? And moreover, why does he want to retire after having a successful postseason?
Garnett isn’t gonig to play for a rebuilding team. He’s going to wait and see what Boston does and then make a decision about his future. The Brooklyn Nets are rumored to have interest as well, but I’m not sure if they can lure him from a contending standpoint.
Lang: Give us your predictions please.
1. Will Josh be traded?
2. Who will the Hawks draft?
3. One free agent that they sign.
1. If the trade demand doesn’t move, then yes at the trade deadline possibly. Would be shocked by anything this summer
2. Best available talent still on the board according to my talk with Larry Drew
3. Not sure, but they need to bring in Brandon Roy for a workout if he’s serious about making a comeback.
do you think the Pacers will trade into the #10 spot with Hornets, while dangling DC and the 26th pick?
Man, Collison and the No. 26 is nowhere enough to get the tenth pick. Remember the Hornets had Collison already and decided to deal him to Indiana.
Yo bro what happened to alex ‘s chat this morning? Anyways whats on the rumor mill for atl ?im feeling it bro. I think we will have some good stuff next year with free agency, please tell me my optimism is right?
Kennedy is on deck for June 29 … his normal day is Friday, I believe.
I’m hearing Houston is interested in Josh Smith … not sure Atlanta is ready to deal him just yet though.
The hiring of Danny Ferry signifies a change of pace for Atlanta and the organization deserves credit for the hire. Will be interesting to see how things play out.
What trade value does Wilson Chandler really have, seems #7 is a bit high IMO …
Love Wilson Chandler’s game, but yes the No. 7 overall pick seems a little high to me as well.
What do you think about Will Barton? Almost every mock has him selected to the Bulls. Do you think that Chicago’s a good fit for him or do you believe he’s a better fit elsewhere?
I think the young man is very confident. If his game ever develops at the same rate of his self-belief we’re looking at a future All-Star. I can see Golden State, Atlanta and OKC taking a look at him if he’s still sitting around late first round.
Who do you think the blazers drafat at 6 or 11?? Thanks love your chat!
At No. 6 I think they go Damian Lillard to address their point guard concerns. At No. 11 they can go a variety of ways … guys like Terrence Ross and Myers Leonard may be available. Leonard would address a center need.
So now that the lakers are stuck on a middle of the pack type of roster do u see SA okc again in wes finals next year?
Lakers aren’t as far away as everyone is making them out to be. Maybe year two in Mike Brown’s system will see Pau Gasol become more comfortable and raise his game. Maybe Andrew Bynum will continue to grow as a basketball player and become more of a leader. The Lakers played OKC very tough, let’s not get it twisted. Last season the Lakers were dominated by Dallas. OKC worked LA, but the Lakers were in basically every game until late.
Hey Lang, how high are you on Drummond? Do you think he could be a star is this league?
Not too high on Drummond, but it’s not necessarily all his fault. UCONN’s latest crop of big men (Thabeet, Boone, HIlton Armstrong, etc.) haven’t evolved into good pros. Throw in the fact Drummond didn’t exactly dominate the collegiate landscape with his superior talent has my eyebrows arched a little higher.
He’s one of those boom-or-bust guys. He’s going to make a GM look a smart man or an idiot before it’s all said and done.
Lang ive noticed jjhonson kinda like out of shape with his motor this season. He didnt play much but he looks out of breathe at times and his jumpers lack leg power which some are short. Im worried. Is this bec of lack of training camp or age????
No, I didn’t see it. Joe is in shape. Actually looked better to me this season than in 2011 even though the numbers don’t really show it. Joe’s game is isolation ball. Coach Larry Drew’s philosophy at its core is against isolation ball … not surprised his numbers are down.
Is it time to let the world know that okc.is trading harden for beal with the cats and confirm it aint a rumor?
I think that rumor is just speculation.
Where do you think maurice williams, jamal crawford and ray felton land?
Mo Williams has mantained that he will opt in for the 2013 season with the Clippers. Hearing Jamal Crawford is intrigued by the Minnesota Timberwolves situation. Ray Felton wants to get paid and start. If Phoenix loses Steve Nash, wouldn’t be surprised at all if the Suns took a hard look at him … given how he performed in Mike D’Antoni’s system in New York and Phoenix pretty similar …
Is horford franchise max material??
He’s a definite All-Star talent, but he’s in a tier below guys like Durant, LeBron, Wade, Kobe, D-Rose, Westbrook, Chris Paul, Dwight Howard, etc.
Hey lang, do you think amare has any trade value at all? I just dont feel like the knicks can contend with him and melo together. I am not sure about the sign and trade rules but do you think that suns can sign and trade nash, along with childress/warrick and frye for stoudemire?
We’ve seen Rashard Lewis’ deal get moved twice recently. Gilbert Arenas get traded in late 2010. Ben Gordon swapped, etc. So guys with bad deals are getting moved, but I just can’t see a team taking a chance on Amar’e after the type of season he is coming off … it was a bad year for Stoudemire. With his injury problems and then recent off the court choices … I think teams will continue to shy away.
Besides Ray Allen who is rumored to sign with the HEAT, who else can Miami realistically sign this offseason…Any legit big men???
Heard Greg Oden was interested in joining the HEAT. Very risky, but hey the team just got finished paying Eddy Curry this past season so anything is possible.
Why do writers on your site still not give LBJ and the heat credit? The last 4 years I’ve been on this site Ingram & pincus have always picked the reigning champion to repeat but both dance around to the thunder or lakers (no surprise) winning this year. I think some ppl are rubbed the wrong way by LBJ so badly that it affects their ability to critique with objectivity. You, my friend MUST have heat repeating with the addition of a Allen or Camby (one of) + #27 pick, correct?
Way too early for me to be talking who repeats in 2013. We have the draft, summer free agency and trades yet to take place. As it strands right now, sure, give me the HEAT since they just proved they’re the best team in the league.
LeBron gets full credit from me. He earned this title and should be given the respect he deserves. EP and BI hold chats every week, hit them up and voice your beef on their LeBron stance. They don’t hide from their readers.
Why is lebron not graded on same scale as kobe. If lebron wins 5 rings they will say he is the greatest to play game, kobe got 5 and they saying he need 6 maybe 7. I think people for get what kobe was like when he was brons age, you couldnt stop him he was mr. 81. they say he couldnt win without shaq he wins 2, when are they going to ask if lebron can win one without wade. cause wade got one without him.
You guys have to stop expecting people to anoint LeBron into the ranks of the all-time best. Time will tell. LeBron is only 9 years into his journey … Kobe has been in the league sixteen seasons. It is unfair to compare the totality of their careers right now because LeBron’s script is still being written.
Also remember, no one was calling MJ the greatest of all-time after his ninth season in the league. I believe he only had two titles then (three behind Magic Johnson). Fast forward six more years and his performance changed minds.
if you had to pick a star player (other than Howard) that could traded tomorrow, who would you pick?
He’s not on the same level as Dwight Howard, but a deal involving Pau Gasol wouldn’t surprise me at all.
What are your thoughts on the Suns direction? Most analysts have mocked guards such as Jeremy Lamb there, but as of recent they have apparently shown interest in Arnett Moultrie, a power forward/center.. What direction do you think they go?
No. 13 is to high for Moultrie. I say Phoenix goes guard … Waiters or Ross.
hello Lang from Greece..do you see harden being moved? i believe that OKC should keep their core and challenge the Heat next year..
No. I don’t see Harden being moved. OKC’s front office is a patient bunch, so coming off of a FInals appearance I can’t see them making knee-jerk moves. Everyone remembers how Orlando messed things up in 2009.
Lang Greene’s official educated guess:
Dwight Howard will start the season as a member of the Orlando Magic.
Dwight Howard will not start the season as a member of the Orlando Magic.
I don’t know what to believe anymore coming out of Orlando.
I say he starts the season with the Magic.
Ur the best looking on hoopsworld
Um, thanks … I guess … lol
If the Thunder want to extend Ibaka over Harden, would a Harden-Bledsoe, Young swap work?
I’m just a Clipper fan dreaming Lang
That sleep must be really good bro …
With K. Irving already on the rise in Cleveland who would be the better fit in the backcourt with Irving Beal or Barnes?
If I had a choice I’d take Beal to pair with Irving as my top option. But I think Barnes would really fit what Cleveland has going on right now as well.
Langy, what is good. Greetings from down under. Seems to be a bit of hype with Danny Ferry’s hiring in ATL. why? Sure he’s committed to winning, but just looking at the moves he made in CLeveland showed he was way off the mark most of the time, and that was building around the most gifted player in the League
Here’s why there is optimism … he MADE moves. He was very active during his stint with Cleveland. Good or bad, moves were made.
The Hawks haven’t really made any massive moves over the past four seasons. The fans here are getting restless and if the current core fails to get past the second round again, now you have a guy in place who has proven he has a trigger finger to execute deals.
I think that’s what’s driving the excitement.
If Drummond falls to, say #9, couldn’t the Celtics trade 21and 22 and send Drummond to KG basketball camp?
No way the Pistons at No. 9 accept a trade giving up the pick for the No. 21 and 22. Joe Dumars has made some strange moves as of late, but I don’t think he’d ever co-sign this …
What direction do the suns go? Pls answer my question big suns fan here..
1. Will they take Arnett Moultrie or a Wing Player?
2. Do they trade up or down?
3. Do they swap picks with another team and add a veteran to lure Nash?
Hey Daniel …
1. I think No. 13 is too high for Moultrie
2. I think they stand pat
3. I think they keep Nash anyway with the money they’re prepared to offer him. He won’t find that kind of dough anywhere else on the open market.
I wonder why the Hawks don’t try to get in on the bidding war for the no. 5 pick from Sacramento?
Don’t you think the Kings would give up the pick for Smith straight up? Or they could Thompson in a s/t along with the pick. Hawks could the draft a center to play next to Horford.
Last question of the night.
Hawks trading Josh Smith for Andre Drummond who will need time to develop is taking two steps back for the Hawks. If Smith is dealt, best believe multiple draft picks (or young talent) and a borderline All-Star is coming back in return.
Be safe Hoop Freaks
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The Cavaliers are set for a breakthrough in 2014. They own the No. 1 overall pick, have plenty of cap space and assets to trade.
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