Chat with Chad Ford
Welcome to SportsNation! On Wednesday, ESPN NBA Insider Chad Ford will drop by to talk some hoops.
Ford covers the NBA and NBA Draft for ESPN Insider and also makes appearances on ESPN Radio and ESPNEWS.
Send your questions now and join Ford Wednesday at 1 p.m. ET!
Chad Ford (1:11 PM)
Aloha everyone. Thanks for coming to the chat today. We seem to be having some issues on our end. But going to try to get through it. Will talk NBA first half and NBA Draft second half. Let's roll
With assets such as Hawes, Thad Young + Evan Turner to trade, PLUS room under the cap to deal FOR teams shedding contracts, please tell me the 76ers will come out of the trade deadline with young talent and/or draft picks
Chad Ford (1:15 PM)
Yes. The Sixers are expected to be prime players in the next few weeks. But I think they'll avoid trading Young unless they get a huge offer. Hawes and Turner, however, can be had for much less. Sixers goal is not only to pick up assets, but make sure they stay competitive with the Bucks and Magic for the No. 1 pick.
Where do you see Andrew Bynum fitting in with the Pacers and what sort of contribution do you foresee?
Chad Ford (1:20 PM)
The move came with little risk. The Pacers lack depth at the five. Mahinmi is an incredibly poor offensive player. He's solid defensively but that the worst +/- on the team. Bynum is clearly a major upgrade on the offensive end over Mahinmi and defensively it's probably a wash. Chemistry is the only risk here. The Pacers, as a team, have great chemistry. If Bynum disrupts that, then it was a mistake. But given the strong culture in Indy, I think they believe they can handle him. Overall, I don't think it will hurt them and may actually help them. Right now I think they are the best team in the NBA and if I were picking a team to win the Finals this year, my pick would be Indy.
Chad Ford (1:22 PM)
Chat answers and my answers back are loading extremely slow today. Sorry everyone. Will try to get as many questions in as I can this hour. Not sure what's going on ...
When do we get a mea culpa over your Suns' prognostications? No, they haven't struggled to win a single game(!) against the west. No, they didn't trade Dragic to the Kings to tank. Give me something
Chad Ford (1:26 PM)
Was totally wrong. Thought they'd be the worst team in the West. Instead, they are a likely playoff team. Thought they'd try to reverse course and continue with the tanking strategy by trading Dragic. Instead they're now pursuing Pau Gasol. Complete whiff by me. However, I must add -- the Suns front office themselves thought they were tanking this year and did contemplate trading Dragic early on. Now they are going the opposite direction. I still think, long term, that they would've been much better off tanking, but if they do something crazy and make it into the Finals, I'll be wrong once again.
what is Orlando's asking price for arron afflalo? is it just a 10-20 1st round pick? and if so isn't that a relatively low asking price for a near all-star caliber player? why not more interest?
Chad Ford (1:31 PM)
Teams are trying to figure that out. He's available, but the Magic have turned down a number of scenarios. It sounds like they want more than that for Afflalo. It might be that since they balked at Eric Bledsoe, they feel like they have to get equal value to that. Good luck.
Do you really think this year's trade deadline will be "epic" (as suggested by Henry Abbott)? I just can't see teams in a position to draft well wanting to give up those picks and I'm not sure what potential contenders could give back in exchange.
Chad Ford (1:33 PM)
I do. I think you have the perfect storm of a handful of teams trying to make a run at the title and a handful of bad teams that might be willing to give up a valuable veteran or two because they don't fit their long term strategy and help in the race for the No. 1 pick. That doesn't happen very often where both teams at the top and the bottom are incentivized to make deals.
The Shlaef (Lawrence)
Not that I would mind but why would Embiid come back for another year potentially like Jeff Goodman is reporting? It's just more time for him to be over-analyzed and critiqued. Get to the association young blood!
Chad Ford (1:39 PM)
Some context. I've covered the draft for a decade. Most prospects, in February and March, essentially say that they aren't thinking about the draft, would like to return or have no plans to leave for the draft. Most of the guys that have declared the past few years said similar things. So no need to overreact. In Embiid's case, he has had concerns that he's not ready for the NBA. The truth is, he's not. But neither is Andrew Wiggins or Julius Randle or Dante Exum or Jabari Parker. The question is whether he's good enough to get minutes. If he gets minutes his game will improve. If he sits on the bench and can't play, it won't. I think Embiid will likely declare at the end of the day. He's the favorite to be the No. 1 pick and there are just too many potential problems if he stays in school (injuries, fault finding from scouts, etc.).
Tyler ennis (Syracuse )
Hey chad, I'm thinking about staying for my sophomore year here in Syracuse, if I stay another year will I be a top 5 pick next year?
Chad Ford (1:42 PM)
Probably not. Scouts love Ennis, but his lack of explosive athletic ability limit his ceiling somewhat. I think he'd be a Top 10 pick this year -- somewhere in the 6 to 10 range. Doubt he climbs above that. He's the steadiest freshman of the group. Has a special maturity to his game. He' s more ready for the NBA, mentally, than most of the other freshman thinking about declaring.
Nick (New York)
What did you think of Florida's Chris Walker last night?
Chad Ford (1:49 PM)
He played 7 minutes, so I can't say a lot other than he looked really athletic (which we already knew). Two lob dunks, a couple of rebounds and two blocks. He's VERY raw. But he has that combination of upside, elite athletic ability and size that scouts drool over. He's so far from being ready for the NBA, but if he declares, he might be drafted in the late lottery just on upside.
Why is Clint Capela outside of the 1st round? His physical tools seem to be the best of any big man after Embiid, Randle, and Vonleh.
Chad Ford (1:56 PM)
He's very talented. He was in the late first round of our latest Mock Draft 2.0 several weeks ago. He's playing great and when more GMs get overseas in the next few weeks (as soon as the trade deadline is over) he's likely to keep moving up the draft boards if he plays well. Ditto for Bosnian big man Jusuf Nurkic and Serbian guards Bogan Bogdanovic and Vasilije Micic. There's actually quite a bit of international talent this year. We base our Mocks and Big Boards off what NBA decision makers are telling us. Sometimes it takes them a while to catch up on the international guys. Still a long way to go until June.
Chad Ford (1:59 PM)
Sorry for the long delays today. The chat tool was struggling. Will try to make it up next week.