Posted on: June 16, 2008 11:42 am
Edited on: June 16, 2008 11:44 am
Here's Monday's Dear Gary ...
Dear Gary: You really don't get it, bud. (Alabama coach Mark) Gottfried is most vulnerable when expectations are high. (With Ron) Steele and (Richard) Hendrix back, even you said it, hey should contend for the SEC West. (But) check the record; that's when (Gottfried) flops. The best thing that can happen to him is for Hendrix to go pro; then he's got an excuse. As far as the fans are concerned, trust me on this, the powers that be in Tuscaloosa could care less about our wishes or about what's right. On the day Steele's double knee surgery was announced, Gottfried should have been fired. He ran an NBA lottery pick into the ground.
I understand Alabama fans have grown impatient with Gottfried after two straight NCAA tournament misses. That's why I wrote the column. But, in his defense (and I made this point in the column), he spent the 2006-07 season playing with an injured Steele and the 2007-08 season playing without Steele completely. That made his job tough, and while I know it comes off as an excuse I'm willing to accept it as a reasonable excuse, at this point.
As for the running-an-NBA-lottery-pick into the ground comment, I can see both sides of it.
Did Steele play hurt?
But I don't remember him ever telling Gottfried he couldn't go and Gottfried making him play. Guys play hurt all the time; we tend to praise them and call them tough. And though in hindsight it seems crazy that Steele kept playing despite the nature of his injuries, I don't recall it being considered ridiculous at the time despite him clearly not being the same player.
Either way, Ron's little brother, Andrew, is set to play for the Crimson Tide next season, and that's worth noting because if the Steele's really thought Gottfried ran their son into the ground do you think they'd willingly send another son his way? I don't. So let's agree to see how this season goes, see whether Gottfried can take a roster that should be talented and make it a winner.
If so, he'll get a raise and contract extension.
If not, well, then his detractors might be too much to overcome.
Posted on: June 11, 2008 3:28 pm
MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- Richard Hendrix still doesn't have a first-round guarantee.
He still doesn't know if he'll get one.
He still doesn't know if he's going to return to Alabama.
And that should pretty much cover the important details surrounding the All-SEC forward, who worked out for the Grizzlies on Wednesday morning alongside Jiri Hubalek and David Padgett. Between you and me, Hendrix was only moderately impressive in the 75-minute workout, just OK in most parts, so it remains unclear (if not doubtful) whether he can really be a first-round pick. Still, the 6-foot-9 forward has four additional workouts scheduled before Monday's deadline, and he said he's likely to delay his decision on whether to remain in the NBA Draft until the last possible moment.
"You just have to give it your best effort in these workouts and hope to impress someone," Hendrix said. "Then what happens happens."
Want an interesting sidenote on Hendrix?
Rivals.com rated him the ninth-best prospect in the country coming out of high school in 2005. The top eight (in order) were Gerald Green, Josh McRoberts, Monta Ellis, Andray Blatche, Martell Webster, Andrew Bynum, Louis Williams and Julian Wright, all of whom are already in the NBA. Just behind Hendrix at No. 10 was Tyler Hansbrough, who will be everybody's preseason National Player of the Year. No. 11 was Greg Paulus, No. 12 was Mario Chalmers, No. 13 was Brandon Rush, No. 14 was Keith Brumbaugh and No. 15 was Shawne Williams.
Posted on: May 28, 2008 11:09 pm
Edited on: May 29, 2008 12:20 am
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- Joey Dorsey was the star of Wednesday's NBA Pre-Draft Camp.
He performed well in the morning game.
But his greatest moments actually came in the postgame interviews.
By now you've probably heard how Dorsey explained to a group of reporters that he knows the Bulls are taking Michael Beasley with the No. 1 pick, and there is nothing funnier to me than the Associated Press moving a story on Dorsey's breaking news. Imagine your John Paxson and somebody approaches you as you're walking around the Disney Wide World of Sports Complex asking for your reaction to Dorsey's unveiling of your draft plans. Honestly, is there anything better than that?
Anyway, in the process of creating news, Dorsey also made a good point.
This NBA Pre-Draft Camp is more like the NBDL Pre-Draft Camp.
Consider that just two players here -- Ty Lawson and DeVon Hardin -- are projected first round picks in the Sports Xchange's mock NBA Draft, and only three other guys -- Wayne Ellington, Davon Jefferson and Dorsey -- figure to be reasonable possibilities. That means 59 of the 64 prospects competing this week basically have little chance to emerge as a first-round pick, and that statistic had Dorsey, well, I'll just let him tell you.
"It pisses me off," Dorsey said. "I wanted to go up against the best."
Alas, the best are only doing interviews on Thursday.
Because that's the way the agents want it, and it's probably not changing in the near future. If anything, it'll likely get worse because agents prevent their borderline first-round clients from competing against everybody projected below them, which is why the hope of prospects going to the Pre-Draft Camp and launching into the lottery is more outdated than New Kids on the Block.
"You want to see how you'd do against everybody," Richard Hendrix said. "But it is what it is."