Wednesday, June 27, 2007
- Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports says that Atlanta might be part of a big trade that would send Kevin Garnett to Phoenix, and Amare Stoudemire to Atlanta. That will get them out of a sticky situation with the third pick: "Yahoo! Sports has learned that the trade would also save the Hawks from an emerging showdown between the front office and coaching staff over whom to draft with the third pick. The front office and coaching staff had settled on Florida power forward Al Horford, but a faction of the Atlanta Spirit ownership group, with business interests in China, is pushing them to take Yi Jianlian."
- Some sources say Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor left town having directed his team to move Kevin Garnett.
- The Muckleshoot Tribe is coming out with a Seattle-area arena proposal.
- Kevin Durant and Nate McMillan both button their polo shirts all the way up the top. This needs to stop. The same link has insight into the Gilbert Arenas vs. Kevin Durant video game showdown.
- Kevin Pritchard talks to Chad Ford one last time about that top pick. He says the team will come to a final conclusion today. He also promises to try to make plenty of trades during the draft. Portland has four second-round picks, and there are only so many players you can stash in Europe.
- ProTrade's Jeff Ma (TrueHoop Stat Geek and consultant to the Portland Trail Blazers) is running a form of mock draft that pits the wisdom of crowds against the wisdom of GMs. Not too late for you to be a voter.
- ESPN's Chad Ford and Bill Simmons are running an entertaining mock draft of their own. Simmons took Durant with the first pick: "If I'm Portland's GM, I just spent the last five weeks wondering about Greg Oden. What's his ceiling? Can he be better than Patrick Ewing? Alonzo Mourning? Can he become as dominant as Tim Duncan? Should I be worried about his surgically repaired wrist, or the fact that he might suffer back problems some day because his legs are different sizes? What about the fact that he likes basketball, but doesn't love it? The thing is, all these franchise centers are basically the same -- it just comes down to their inherent will to dominate a game. Hakeem had that will, Duncan has it, Moses had it, Shaq had it in 2000 and 2001 ... for whatever reason, Ewing didn't have it, and neither did Mourning or Robinson. Can you see Oden stepping onto a basketball court and saying, 'There's no way we're losing this f-ing game. I'm destroying the other team tonight.' For some reason, I can't."
- Reportedly Pat Riley wanted to draft Chris Kaman with the pick that became Dwyane Wade.
- How you get to be Kevin Pritchard.
- You can buy Dwyane Wade's house. And Matt Geiger's house reportedly has 11 watussi. I have no idea what that means, but in a way, I think I already knew that about Matt Geiger. He would have 11 watussi. UPDATE: Wanna see some big watussi? (Don't worry, it's safe for work.)
- Talk of the Bucks trading up. If I were them, I would do no such thing, because whoever they'd like to get at three, four, or five might well be there at six. I think there's a good chance they have two of the Florida guys, and a bunch of other serious talent, at six.
- Don't forget Al Thornton. It says a lot about this year's draft that a player of his quality doesn't crack the top ten in most mock drafts.
- The Associated Press has a big Yi Jianlian writeup: "Bruce O'Neil, president of the U.S. Basketball Academy in Eugene, Ore., has watched Yi for several years. The USBA has a long-term consulting agreement with the CBA. 'I think he's the least-known player in the draft,' said O'Neil, who returned this week to the United States from China. 'Some teams in the NBA have done their homework on him, some haven't,' O'Neil said. 'For me he's a multidimensional talent - a top-five pick, for sure. Of course, they play different positions, but he's stronger than Yao was at this point in his career.'" Also, the NBA tells us that his name is pronounced EE TEE-an-LEE-an. Got it?
- Antonio McDyess is not a free agent. Yet.
- ClipperBlog digs in the archives to see how various draft experts fared in years past.
- Paul Shirley imagines Kobe Bryant and Kevin Garnett on the same team.