Posted on: August 15, 2010 3:42 pm
Edited on: August 15, 2010 3:44 pm
Posted by Royce Young
Indiana already filled its major roster hole in a deal that brought point guard in. But by the sound of it, the Pacers are looking to make at least one more splash in the trading market before the season starts.
Larry Bird was a bit more vague than Danny Granger in talking to NBA Fanhouse, but Bird said , "We're not good enough right now... So we have to take a hard look and see where we're at. If there's some opportunity, we're going to be involved in it.'" Granger on the other hand pointed out the Pacers need to look for a big to replace Troy Murphy who was moved to New Jersey in the four-team deal.
"We're not done yet," Granger told Fanhouse Saturday after the scrimmage against China . "I talked to management, and we're not done yet. What will happen, I don't know yet. We're still mulling over it. But we got a few things still up our sleeve."
"We're going to have to go after another big, I'm sure," he continued. "Losing Troy, he was great. I can play the (power forward) but I'm not a true (power forward). So we're definitely going to have to add another big, and I think that will be our main focus."
Currently, the Pacers have center Roy Hibbert, Tyler Hansbrough who missed most of last season because of injury, Soloman Jones, Jeff Foster and Josh McRoberts. Second-round pick Magnum Rolle also has a legitimate shot at the roster as well.
Indiana definitely has some intriguing assets to make such a move. The Pacers have the expiring contracts of Mike Dunleavy ($10.5 million), T.J. Ford ($8.8 million) and Jeff Foster ($6.6 million) as trade bait. Some thought James Posey would be a candidate to be bought out, but that appears very unlikely. However, Posey is an excellent trade piece as a contender would definitely love to grab his ability and contract.
Indiana has been a team that's finished in the bottom third of the league the past few seasons, but showed some serious signs of improvement late last year. Darren Collison is certainly an important addition to the Pacer roster, but another quality piece might be something that could put this young squad into the discussion to make a run at eighth in the East.
Posted on: August 12, 2010 9:05 am
Edited on: August 12, 2010 9:30 am
Posted by Matt Moore
Did we overreact to the Malice in the Palace? Was it really that big of a deal when Ron Artest went into the stands and decked a fan who he thought hit him with a cup of soda (he didn't, some other dude did)? After all, Kevin McHale did pretty much the same thing in 1987. The answer of course, is no. Even if no one was significantly injured in either incident doesn't mean that the odds are good these types of things won't lead to it. There are kids in that lower bowl. Let's all agree near-riots are bad, m'kay?
While we're at it, let's keep "don't slap assistant coaches in Pro-Am leagues (or ever)" on the list as well.
Daryl Morey on the trade for Courtney Lee yesterday: "This is a guy who we were focused on acquiring in the (’08) draft. I think, overall, the deal is similar to the Kyle Lowry deal. We’ve been trying to acquire Courtney when he went to Orlando and then he went to New Jersey and as you can tell, myself being on vacation, you can just never tell when an opportunity is going to strike. We really target players who we think will fit in well here over time and when we got our first chance to acquire him we really were obviously fairly aggressive to get this done."
Lorenzo Wright's ex-wife (who has been investigated in connection to his murder) claims he left the house the night of his murder with drugs and money . This story gets progressively somehow more depressing.
Carlos Arroyo raps ! (Not well.)
Breathe a sigh of relief for the already depleted Team USA team. Danny Granger's finger is A-OK . You can pat your Pacer friends on the back as well.
Don't sleep on Shaun Livingston. I can never decide if Shaun Livingston is over-covered due to his hardships, or not covered enough. Either way, the idea of him with the Bobcats is a pretty solid concept. Larry Brown is the type of coach that appreciates the effort that Livingston has made to recover from injury.
Chris Bosh continues to drive the dagger into Toronto . It's kind of suprising. Some people you expect to behave cruelly to their former small-market comrades. But Bosh never struck me as that type. I was wrong in that assessment.
Shocking news, Rudy Fernandez wants out of Portland . No, really. No kidding. Like, seriously this time. No joshing.
Brian Scalabrine may be a coach . No, not a dancing coach. Quit laughing. It's not funny. Not that funny, at least.
Posted on: August 4, 2010 6:14 pm
Edited on: August 4, 2010 6:17 pm
Posted by Royce Young
About 30 feet. (Or rather, 9.14 meters since the games are in Europe.) That's about how much size has either gotten hurt or has been forced to drop out of the World Championships for Team USA. The latest? Seven-footer Brook Lopez will not participate because he hasn't fully recovered from mono.
After Jerry Colangelo announced the 15-man roster that would go to training camp Aug. 10-16, everyone noticed one thing: There are only two centers on this squad. Well, make that one now.
However, shortly after Lopez officially bowed out, promising youngster JaVale McGee was added to the roster. Now McGee is raw and there's no guarantee he'll be on the final 12-man that heads to Turkey. But chances are looking pretty good for the Wizard big man. That's mainly due to process of elimination or just survival of the fittest, but regardless, it's McGee's time to step up.
Assuming Team USA keeps McGee to go along with Tyson Chandler, how does this affect them? Well, a lot actually. No matter what, it's hard to see McGee being a key cog in the Team USA rotation. He's young, doesn't have any international experience and was really only brought into camp originally to serve as a training buddy for the other big men. We knew players like Kevin Durant and Rudy Gay were going to interchange between positions, but now it's a question of how much. Could Durant see 10 minutes a game at center? Fifteen? Twenty? If that happens, is does Danny Granger make the squad to fill in time at small forward? Lopez's situation has set off a bit of a chain reaction on the roster, and it won't be easy to solve.
So is McGee now a lock though? Hardly. Yes, it makes sense to bring him because having only one center would seem odd, especially when foul trouble is easy to get into going against the likes of Marc Gasol of Spain and Sofoklis Schortsanitis or Greece. But at the same time, if a tweener like Jeff Green impresses in New York, Colangelo and Coach K may prefer to just play small at times and have that versatility and flexibility.
More than likely if McGee makes the final roster, he'll be there as an insurance policy for Chandler. You don't want to waste a roster spot on a guy that's there just to wear warmups. Especially when that means a talented player will have to be left home. Then again, that extra player - if it's anyone other than Green - will likely be stuck behind multiple players anyway. So really, what are you losing by taking McGee over say, Eric Gordon, who might be behind five other guys anyway?
But let's not sell McGee short here. He looked fairly fantastic in Vegas during summer league and had moments during the scrimmage a few weeks ago. There's good reason to think he could serve a purpose and honestly, might even find a little floor time. This USA team is going to run. And McGee is ideal in transition.
Training camp in New York just got a little more interesting and the cuts for Coach K and Colangelo just got tougher. Do you completely buy into the small ball approach and take a better player? Or bring McGee and have two centers? Whatever the case, Team USA was dealt another blow Wednesday and its trip to Turkey just became a whole heck of a lot tougher.
Posted on: July 28, 2010 3:47 pm
Edited on: July 28, 2010 3:48 pm
Posted by Royce Young
The first cuts for Team USA have been made and the 15 players that will be moving on to training camp (August 10-16) in New York are:
Posted on: July 28, 2010 11:59 am
Edited on: July 28, 2010 12:00 pm
Posted by Royce Young
Cuts are coming for Team USA today and while some are beginning to think Jerry Colangelo may now take 16 players to training camp, it looks like it's about to wrap up for at least three players.
O.J. Mayo, Tyreke Evans and Gerald Wallace are expected to be among the players cut today when Team USA reveals its training camp roster, Chris Tomasson of FanHouse reports . As mentioned, a fourth is likely to be cut, but that's a question being debated by the coaching staff right now.
Eric Gordon was thought to be on the chopping block, but the Indianapolis Star reported Gordon will make the cut. The Star also confirmed Danny Granger will make the team. Warriors World reported guard Golden State guard Stephen Curry has gotten his confirmation call to go to New York.
Depending on what Colangelo wants to do inside, JaVale McGee is the likely candidate to be the fourth cut. But another unlikely player makes more sense, according to Rob Mahoney of Hardwood Paroxysm :
If there is a fourth cut — and it’s entirely possible that there won’t be, yet — it’s likely to be Rajon Rondo.
The lights of the FIBA World Championships were never going to be all that kind to Rondo, as the imperfections of his game would be in full view in international basketball’s unique hue. Defensively, he falls in line with everything Team USA wants to do, but on offense, it’s unlikely the Americans would be able to overcome having two quasi-liabilities (Rondo and say, Tyson Chandler) on the floor at the same time. Rajon may have forced his way into the top tier of point guards in the NBA, but properly executed zone defenses will smother him. Rondo could find ways to be effective, but if I’m betting on one of the team’s unimpressive shooters (Rondo, Derrick Rose, Russell Westbrook) to succeed in FIBA-style ball, it’s not Rondo.
Which makes sense for all the internal debating going on. Rondo would be a tough cut to make, but as Mahoney points out, a necessary one. This isn't about bringing the best players to Turkey. It's about bringing the best team . And with a stacked backcourt, Rondo's game doesn't figure to translate internationally as well as some others.
Posted on: July 26, 2010 12:28 pm
Edited on: July 26, 2010 9:33 pm
Posted by Royce Young
Cuts are expected today for Team USA and Jerry Colangelo says right now he plans on taking 15 players to training camp. Currently though, there are 19 guys on the roster, so four appear to be getting the rest of the summer off.
So, the obvious question i s: Who's likely to be in and out? And not only that, who's looking good for the final roster as well?
Kevin Durant - I'm going to write something here just because everybody else is. But we know this is KD's team and he did nothing Saturday night to make you think otherwise. Not only did he score at his typical high-efficiency clip (28 points on 10-17 shooting) but he also showed off some excellent passing skills. He's the only guy that's a confirmed lock at this point.
The Almost Locks
Derrick Rose - The competition is pretty fierce between Rose, Russell Westbrook, Rajon Rondo and Chauncey Billups. Deciding not only who makes the final cut will be tough, but who plays? Right now Rose has the upper hand because of reputation and also he's played well thus far in Vegas. But a poor week and he could easily slip down into the maybe section.
Chauncey Billups - Billups will likely make the final roster by default. He's the elder statesman of the team and with so many guys around 21 or 22, having an "OG" (Old Guy) as they're calling him, isn't a bad thing.
Rudy Gay - Other than Durant, Gay was the most impressive player Saturday. He netted 23 on 7-11 from the floor and really showcased his athleticism. Gay has an extremely good chance to not just make the final roster, but to have a big impact in Turkey as well.
Tyson Chandler - Coming in, Chandler was a total bubble guy. Now he's not only almost a guarantee, but probably the US's starting center. He's been more aggressive in the paint than anyone else and with Team USA lacking size, Chandler is a perfect piece to set up in the middle to defend the rim. Plus, with FIBA rules allowing players to knock the ball off the rim, Chandler could be an absolute force.
Rajon Rondo - The problem with Rondo is that he's one dimensional. Westbrook, Rose and Billups can conceivably slide over to the 2, but Rondo is locked into the point guard position. If David Lee doesn't get hurt and Amar'e Stoudemire were available, Rondo might be on the block. But as of today, it's looking good for Rondo.
The Looking Goods
Kevin Love - Love has a lot of value to this team because he can rebound, set screens and pass. Plus with the shortened 3-point line, he could be an absolute deadly pick-and-pop candidate. He's not a lock yet because he's hasn't performed especially well so far, but he's likely to make the at least the first cut.
Brook Lopez - Lopez is currently suffering from mono, so not only does that explain his lackluster performances, but it puts him in jeopardy of missing the games. The US needs his size badly and that's why he still has a great shot at the team.
Russell Westbrook - In the scrimmage, Westbrook was a menace. He's like a ball-hawking safety that's always looking to jump a route. He's the Ed Reed of the NBA. And because of that, he has a nice shot at the roster as a stopper to come in and frustrate someone like Ricky Rubio. Westbrook is a physical guard that beats up a lot of opponents. With the hand-checking rules, Westbrook could get downright nasty.
Stephen Curry - Team USA needs a shooter and nobody's stroke has been better. Well, other than Durant's. But Curry can play both the point and shooting guard, but his job will be to step on the floor and knock down treys.
Lamar Odom - Odom is a versatile power forward that can do it all for Team USA. Which is something it needs with the injuries and issues the team has had up front. However, Odom isn't a guarantee at this point because he admittedly came in to Vegas in poor shape and hasn't looked wonderful. But everyone knows what he's capable of so he'll likely be there.
Andre Iguodala - Iguodala may not make the final cut because of a logjam at the 2 and 3, but he's played well enough to at least get to camp. He's an above average wing defender and fits in well with Team USA's up-tempo approach.
Danny Granger - Granger has the unfavorable position of being behind Kevin Durant and Rudy Gay. However, Durant and Gay might be spending a healthy amount of time at the 4, meaning Granger could slip in and play small forward. He's shot the ball well and scored at a high clip thus far. He's competing basically against Andre Iguodala and right now, Iguodala's defense gives him a slight edge.
Gerald Wallace - Thus far, Wallace hasn't impressed much offensively. But really, he rarely does. He makes his mark by playing harder than everyone else, playing defense and just scoring tough buckets. There's a plethora of small forwards on the roster, but having an extra ace defender is never bad. Wallace may make this cut, but he'll be in a battle with Granger and Iguodala for the final 12.
Jeff Green - Green has been pretty meh so far. His 3-point shot has been inconsistent, he hasn't hit many jumpers and he hasn't rebounded exceptionally well. Yet because of the team's situation, he fits in well. He's versatile, can play multiple positions and can be a very solid offensive player. He might not see quality time, but he's worth having.
The Four on the Block
Eric Gordon - The US was looking for a shooter to stretch the zone defense international teams love to play a la Michael Redd in 2008 and basically, it was a competition between Gordon and Curry. And so far, it looks like Curry has the upper hand. Gordon has shot the ball well, but Curry's stroke is so pure that it's hard to picture it going flat under the pressure in Turkey. Gordon's is a beautiful thing, but a little more inconsistent.
Tyreke Evans - A tweaked ankle is all that's keeping Evans out. He was likely a lock for this roster, but because of a sore ankle he's missed most the practices plus the scrimmage. For shame.
JaVale McGee - McGee is a darkhorse just because he's seven feet tall and is a center. Team USA needs that sort of thing badly. But right now, he's just too unpolished to go in front of someone like Kevin Love or Brook Lopez. McGee has shown some encouraging flashes of brilliance, but he's just not ready.
O.J. Mayo - A player like Mayo is going to undeservedly get left off this roster and it's just because of the supply of backcourt players. Team USA is ultra thin up front, so Coach K and company are more likely to take someone like Gerald Wallace or Jeff Green who can play on the front line than stack another guard onto the already full backcourt.