Chat with Chris Sheridan
Sheridan's chat tips off at 5 p.m. ET on Thursday so send in your questions now and join him right here for the answers.
Chris Sheridan (5:01 PM)
Good afternoon from Philadelphia, where I am covering Game 6 of Pistons-76ers tonight. What a week it's been in the NBA coaching ranks, and the Cavs-Wizards series has been a treat. Also, Team USA now knows its draw for the Olympics. So we'll chat about all the above, and more. Let's roll ...
I've never had a question answered on one of these chats before, so here's to hoping this is the one! This is pretty random, but I want to change things up considering all that's been talking about lately is coaching changes, playoffs, etc. My question is: Would you consider Nick Van Exel one of the better clutch players the NBA has ever seen? Everyone remembers the Lakers last game at Boston Garden in 1995. Good times. Answer this, and I'll give you a high five and a chocolate chip cookie!
Chris Sheridan (5:06 PM)
wow, Basel. That is out of left field. But your timing was perfect, cuz your question popped up at the top of the queue after I sweated Jersey Turnpike traffic to make it here at the nick of 5 to start the chat on time. To answer your question, No. Robert Horry is a clutch shooter, Sam Cassell is a clutch player. Nick could play and Nick could shoot (especially the long ones at the end of quarters), but I don;t have him in my top 15 clutch players. One of the first basketball games I ever covered was a Cincinnati-UNC game in the NCAA tournament at the Meadowlands, and Nick was lights out in the first half like you wouldn;t believe and MIA in the second half.
Mike ( sydney,australia)
HI Chris. I am felling these playoffs are very much going against the grain of what we saw last year. Last year Amare puts his foot on the court in a non agressive way, and he's tossed. This year I am seeing players slap other players ( songala /bron ) and watching players shove refs ( KG ) and a whole lot more and its just so obvious that the NBA has a double standard. Its like Stern is very much in control of who he wants to see win. I dont think its fair .Thoughts?
Chris Sheridan (5:09 PM)
I like it better this way. I enjoy the physicality, bjut I'm old school like that. The Songaila play was plausibly an accident, and LeBron is a tough enough guy to shake off a little poke lik that was. garnett was borderline, but that whole Atlanta-Boston fracas was about a 2 on a scale of 1 to 10. I thought the NBA handled both cases correctly.
Sam (Los Angeles, CA)
Hey Chris. With how the Lakers were able to steal Gasol from the Grizz, it got me thinking: What do you think is the best midseason trade ever or what are your top 5 midseasdon trades?
Chris Sheridan (5:11 PM)
wow, good question, Sam. GThe gasol deal makes the top five,the istons getting Sheed, the Sixers getting Mutombo in '01 was big, though I don;t know about top five. Little help folks, I'll post a few submissions.
RJ (Los Angeles, CA)
What does the Wizards have to do to beat James and the Cavs and advance to the next round? If they do advance do they have a shot against the C's?
Chris Sheridan (5:15 PM)
I think they need to get a little more offensively out of Mason and Songaila tomorrow at home, and they need Caron Butler to be aggressive and get to the line and get the Cavs' big men in foul trouble. Cleveland got a ton of second shots last night. Winning a Game 7 in cleveland won't be easy, but I picked Washington in 7 before the series started becausr I think they have it in them to get over the hump againt their nemesis_ and to do it on the road. If they get the Celtics, one interesting note: Washington was the only NBA team to have a winning record against Boston, going 3-1 during the regular season.
Hornacek to the Jazz, Barkley to the Suns.
Raymond (Rancho Cucamonga, CA)
Midseason trade -- what about the Hawks trading Wilkins for D. Manning. This cost the Hawks their best chance at a title because they were in 1st place in the East when they made this trade, and became nothing shortly thereafter. Wait -- this kind of reminds of the 2008 Phoenix Suns?
Mychal Thompson to Lakers in 87.
Korver to Utah. Not an all timer but up there for this season. Definitely more helpful than Kidd or Shaq.
Sam (Los Angeles, CA)
Lakers in 1999-2000 getting Glen Rice and a PF (forgot the name) for Eddie Jones and Elden Campbell. That produced a championship....
Chris Sheridan (5:19 PM)
OK, there's a few. Anybody else?
You are actually wrong about the Wizards being the only team to have a winning record against Boston in the regular season. Orlando was 2-1 against them, though KG didn't play in one of the games.
Chris Sheridan (5:23 PM)
My bad, Basel. I should have said they were the only team to go 3-1 against them. And to broadly answer a bunch of other questions regarding the Magic, yes, I think they have a legitimate shot of defeating the Pistons in the next round. Let's make sure Detroit gets there first, although I expect them to take cre of business tonight here at the Wachovia Center.
Spurs or Hornets?
Chris Sheridan (5:23 PM)
Spurs in 7.
Chris, you are the BEST chat guru in the history of ESPN! Quick question: with D'Antoni and Avery now available, do you see the Knicks pursuing either one as head coach for next season? If not, who do you foresee coaching my beloved Knickerbockers next year?
Chris Sheridan (5:27 PM)
I think they'll both be on the Knicks' list, but I don; think either of them are the right fit. The Knicks have basically told eveyone they're going to tank the next two seasons because priority No. 1 is getting under the cap in the summer of 2010. Do you think that appeals to either of those men? I don;t. I still think Mark Jackson is the frontrunner, but I think Donnie walsh is going to take his good, sweet time just like he did when he held for so long after announcing he was going to trade Artest.
Alex (New York)
where can the Knicks dump Curry and/or Randolph and get something of value in return?
Chris Sheridan (5:29 PM)
OK, one more Knicks question. With Randolph, I believe him to be borderline unmoveable. With Curry, they have to get him in shapoe over the summer and build up his trade value ewarly in the season. I thi9nk the guy they'll dump this summer, to borrow your word, is Jared Jeffries. He's one of the smaller contracts they have for beyond 2010, he's a hard worker, he's a decent defender, but he's overpaid at the full mid-level. He won't be easy to dump.
Chris, what is the REAL reason my Mavs have gotten so bad in 2 seasons? Cuban, lack of drafting well, lack of quality free agents, cause it's not Avery.
Chris Sheridan (5:35 PM)
Lost my internet connecttion there for a minute. Damn gremlins. On the Mavs, look, they play in a strong, strong conference. Last year was somewhat of a fluke, and Avery bears some of the blame for what happened in Game 1 of that series, but this year simply they went up against a very good team that matched up with them very well. I don't think they need to blow their team up. I do think they need to get another athletic big man or wing player who can compliment JKidd.
nash for carmelo and a pick, good trade for phx?
Chris Sheridan (5:36 PM)
Phx would do that in a heartbeat. But you forget that the Suns don't do good trades, only bad ones.
Danial (Boston, MA)
Drexler to Houston on Valentine's Day in '95. Wouldn't have won the title without him.
Chris Sheridan (5:36 PM)
Top 5 for certain.
Jared (Portland, OR)
Which team is most capable of stopping LeBron from single-handedly winning a playoff series?
Chris Sheridan (5:37 PM)
Not the Pistons, eh?
Mike (New Orleans)
How much better are the Wiz without Arenas? They look like they have more chemistry and trust the team concept instead of betting on Agent Zero. What do you think Arenas will do this off-season?
Chris Sheridan (5:39 PM)
They do look better without him. Let's face it, they got used to playing without him. I still think Gil will opt-out and re-sign with Washington long-trm, though not at max money. But he'll get taken care of for the next 5-6 years.
Steve, Los Angeles
A week off for the Lakers right now is good or bad?
Chris Sheridan (5:41 PM)
Good. Any rust they develop can be shook off in 12 minutes of Game 1.
Chris Sheridan (5:43 PM)
Henry Abbott just dropped off a cheesesteak. Whata guy! He'll be live blogging tonight from the arena, so give True Hoop a click during the game.
Chris (San Antonio)
Everyone is saying that the Spurs have to get it done this year because they are so old. Nobody knows about the young talent from Europe we have coming in and how much we have to spend in the offseason. How do you think the Spurs' future looks?
Chris Sheridan (5:45 PM)
Who are you talkin g about aside from Splitter? And by the way, that guy needs to hit the weight room or he"ll get killed in the NBA. Mahinmi played well for Austin in the D-League, but I haven;t seen enough of him to make a long-term judgement on him.
Alex (Huntsville, TX)
Can we get your position regarding "flopping" in the league?
Chris Sheridan (5:46 PM)
I hte it. I've always hated it. By dad was a huge Milwaukee Bucks fan when I was a kid, and he hated Jerry Sloan with a passion cuz he considered him a flopper.
how scary would the lakers be if they never made that caron butler trade? i bet they were kicking themselves after watching the game last night
Chris Sheridan (5:48 PM)
Few people ever mention that Larry, but it's an excellent point. Caron for Kwame goes down in this decade's Top 5 worst.
Chris Sheridan (5:50 PM)
The worst of the 90s, by the way, was the deal Stu Jackson made when he was running the Vancouver Grizzlies. He sent a future No. 1 to Detroit for Otis Thorpe, who was basically done at that point and wanted no part of being in Vancouver. That pick went to the Pistons in the 2003 draft, and Detroit got the No. 2 pick (but didn;t bother to use it on Wade, Carmelo or Bosh.)
Eddie (Davis, CA)
But then without the Butler trade, the Lakers don't get Pau
Chris Sheridan (5:52 PM)
Understood. Just saying it was a big ol' boo-bo when you look back at good and bad trades, which has sort of been the theme of this ol' chat.
Alix in Disrespected NBA Titletown
Chris, the smartest mid-season trade, other than the Gasol coup, was the Spurs trade of Barry and the pick for Thomas, then getting Barry back for the LM prorated and the LM next year too! Bolstered their bench and saved themselves from going over the cap? Your thoughts?
Chris Sheridan (5:55 PM)
You make a good point, Mr. Spurs fan.
Ok....so, instead of mid-season trades, how about your top 5 free agent signings. Lakers signing Shaq, Utah signing the wink wink with Boozer. Those are two recent ones that come to mind for me.
Chris Sheridan (5:58 PM)
I'd have to think awhile for an all-time Top 5, but a few good recent ones, off the top of my head: Turkoglu for the mid-level, Redd for $3 mill a year (when the Bucks matched the Cavs), Okur.
The Brooklyn Nets signing the wink wink with LeBron James in 2009
Chris Sheridan (5:59 PM)
This one made me laugh. Gotta wrap that chat, folks. We'll do it again soon.