Chat with John Hollinger
Welcome to SportsNation! On Thursday, NBA columnist John Hollinger will stop by to share his thoughts on all of the NBA news.
Send your questions now and join Hollinger Thursday at 3 p.m. ET!
John Hollinger (3:13 PM)
Greetings all. Sorry for the late start but we'll make it up on the back end ... now let's start talking hoops.
Hi John, has summer league stats ever translated into success in the NBA?
John Hollinger (3:15 PM)
As far as predictive power goes it's essentially worthless. I think it's much better for scouts to see little-used players and get a read on their skill sets and body types for down the road.
jared (livonia mi)
john, any chance that the pistons can trade their cap space, kwame, and maxiel for chandler
John Hollinger (3:16 PM)
I'm not sure how much that swap helps the Hornets. They want to get under this year's tax and they're still over after that trade, though it would help them deal with next year's tax hit. The OKC deal was really the perfect combo for them, not sure what they can do at this point.
John, is Jarrett Jack worth 20 mil over 4 years? Do you see him as a backup to Calderon or starter at the 2 ?
John Hollinger (3:17 PM)
Yes and no. I like him in that role in that system, and his strong finish last year certainly earned him some notice. On the other hand, he's still not a $20 million player -- Toronto intentionally overpaid so Indy wouldn't match, and I believe it will work.
Paul Millsap (Utah)
Are the Jazz going to match the offer or am I off to Blazer Land?
John Hollinger (3:19 PM)
I'd bet strongly on the Jazz matching and trading Boozer, though they probably need to involve the Blazers or Kings' cap space to get much of anything done that helps resolve their tax issue.
What do you think about the Afflalo pickup by Denver? It seems like his defense is on the same level and his offense is slightly better with the chance to improve.
John Hollinger (3:20 PM)
Afflalo isn't nearly as good an athlete as Jones but he's a very good defensive player and he can space the floor with his 3-point shooting. I don't think they're any worse off and he came much more cheaply.
Where do you rank Orlando in terms of a successful offseason? Do you know anything on the possible signing of Matt Barnes?
John Hollinger (3:21 PM)
Massively successful offseason for the Magic, between their moves and the return of Nelson I think they have a great chance at winning a championship. Haven't heard much on Barnes, Magic don't have much of their MLE left so I imagine he'll look other places first -- especially since Orlando already has Lewis, Bass and Anderson at PF.
Have you considered incorporating the results from the athetic testing done at the combine to your draft projections?
John Hollinger (3:23 PM)
I tried -- it tells you less than you might think. It appears some of the measuring is less than scientific by the disparities between standing reach and wingspan, and some of the stuff is of qustionable use for the NBA to begin with, most notably the bench press.
deviN (san fran)
i love your chats!!!! what do you think of my boy anthony randolph's dazzling summer league performance?
John Hollinger (3:26 PM)
Encouraging, but you need to understand what a lengthy list of players we've seen in recent years that dominated summer league and then did nothing in the NBA. Like I said before, it has virtually no predictive value.
Vince Carter and Brandon Bass for Turkoglu, Alston, Battie and Lee? How is this a massive success ? Turk is the best player of that group easily.
John Hollinger (3:28 PM)
I'm amazed at how many people think Turkoglu is better than Vince Carter. Sorry, but there's no way. Carter is a better shooter, better scorer, better rebounder, better defender and, believe it or not, had a better Pure Point Rating than Turk last season. Nobody saw him because the Nets were terrible, but he had an All-Star caliber season. This is a massive upgrade.
Are there any realistic trade scenarios involving Stoudamire that improve the Suns both now and later? And how big of a concern is his health--is it more worrisome for teams than his questionable defense and attitude?
John Hollinger (3:30 PM)
There are no realistic scenarios until he proves his eye is healed, which based on the recent unscheduled follow-up surgery he had is far from proven. So yes, the health is a far bigger issue than the D/attitude.
now that dallas lost gortat, what's their next move?
John Hollinger (3:31 PM)
Not sure they'll splurge on another RFA; obviously getting Odom would be a coup but I think they're a long shot. Otherwise I see them using a chunk of their midelvel on a serviceable 5 (Rasho Nesterovic or one of his ilk) and staying patient with the rest in case a veteran big becomes available in Jan/Feb -- they always do.
John Hollinger (3:32 PM)
Dallas also has Greg Bucker's partially guaranted deal to play with, and could make a low-level deal that way to bring back a $5.1 million or less player from a team needing cap relief.
Any word on theo ratliff? As probably the best big man left out there, I am surprised there have been no reports on where he will end up
John Hollinger (3:34 PM)
Not even close to the best big man left out there, but he'll probably sign somewhere for the minimum in September to be a team's third center.
Would Kaman and the 7 mill TPE to the Hornets for Chandler and Antonio Daniels work for both sides? New Orleans gets salary relief without losing a center, the Clippers get a more athletic center to run with Griffin, Gordon, Baron and Thornton.
John Hollinger (3:37 PM)
that's an interesting trade -- knocks several mil off the Hornets salary for the year, though I think the improvement on the Clippers' side is marginal at best and would put them really close to the tax (don't have my #s to work on right here so I'm not sure if it puts them over).
Can the Phoenix Suns be competitive this year?
John Hollinger (3:38 PM)
If Amare's eye is OK they'll probably win in the mid-to-high 40s and get blown away in the first round of the playoffs. If he's not OK they're hosed.
Myke (Salt Lake City)
Can the Jazz get Beasley from Miami in a Boozer deal?
John Hollinger (3:38 PM)
I highly doubt it. Boozer is a one-year rental for Miami, they're going to have a ton of cap psace in the summer and there's no reason to extend Boozer at his ridiculous asking price when the pickings are so much better after the season.
Heat has almost 43 million in expiring contracts. When will they make a move?
John Hollinger (3:40 PM)
Look ahead on the chess board - all those expirings are going to reap massive cap space next summer, even after factoring in the declining cap. Also, $23M of those expirings belong to one player, and noboody else is swallowing that thing. Third factor to remember -- Heat are a tax team if they add any more $$ this year.
Why is no one talking about Ramon Sessions? The Bucks are signing Ilyasova, so it's not like they have massive amounts of room. Couldn't someone do a "toxic" offer, a la Portland with Millsap? He's a terrific young player that is getting no interest.
John Hollinger (3:41 PM)
Sessions is indeed underrated, but with so few teams having cap space there's only one team who can make an offer like that, and they targeted Millsap. Bucks will probably match something up to the MLE, which is all most of the other teams can offer, so that's why things haven't heated up with him.
Joe Dumars (Detroit)
Who are we going to get among the big men that might be available via free agency or trade? If I had simply kept Oberto to deal his expiring contract, I would have been better off than having $1.8 million in dead money sitting on our cap.
John Hollinger (3:43 PM)
Not so fast -- Pistons are sitting on roughly $4 mil in cap space because of cutting Oberto and trading Affalo/Sharpe, which is important since they have no MLE or biannual exception this year. They'll get something done.
are the blazers insane to put money on a bench PF and not odom, they would get their starter SF and kill the Lakers
John Hollinger (3:45 PM)
The two SFs who would have been real upgrades are both off the market, so that's no longer possible. Meanwhile, they have three established frontcourt players -- one of them was a Fluke Rule player last year and two have histories of knee problems. I think Millsap makes a lot of sense that way; then they can trade either Outlaw or Webster to clean up the SF rotation and get another guard.
rajib (fort worth)
who has the best team in the west? spurs?
John Hollinger (3:46 PM)
nice try. Lakers are still the team to beat out there, Spurs are a solid second. Nuggets and Blazers belong in the conversation; Mavs and Jazz can still wriggle in if they push the right buttons.
Phil B (Pdx)
who was the fluke rule front court player for the blazers last year? and who else beyond oden has a history of knee problems?
John Hollinger (3:47 PM)
The answer to both questions is Joel Przybilla.
Bobcats Fan (no one knows)
How much are we gonna over pay Felton this summer?
John Hollinger (3:48 PM)
Bobcats fans have many things to fear from their management, but overpaying is not among them. If anything they'll end up losing him by trying to lowball.
What do you think is next for Toronto? Do think they'll still be able to land Delfino and Rasho?
John Hollinger (3:50 PM)
Most likely, yes, and then they'll call it a day. I think Dallas should take a hard look at Rasho but I'm not hearing much on that front, plus he's familiar with Toronto and puts them closer to their roster goal of having 11 foreign guys and Chris Bosh.
John Hollinger (3:50 PM)
I heard they were crestfallen when they found out DeMar DeRozan wasn't French.
Anton (Czech Republic)
John, which conference will be the better one next year? Did Toronto, Orlando, Washington, Atlanta, and Cleveland do enough to tip the scales in their favor, or is the West still the best?
John Hollinger (3:51 PM)
Quick correction, since this is widely misundertood: the East was better than the West last year. They won more games head to head and had three of the four best records, and the West had six dregs at the bottom while the East only had one automatic win (Washington). Only place West was better was spots 4 thru 9, and that may not hold up this year.
Liévin (Bazeilles (France))
Who will be the perfect substitute if Odom leaves? David Lee?
John Hollinger (3:52 PM)
There isn't one. Lakers used their MLE on Artest and have no capacity to sign a free agent. I suppose they could try using Morrison's expiring deal to get a serviceable big, but it won't be anybody nearly as good as Odom.
john before you leave i ask nicely please adress the rumors swirling around the heat. what do you think the chances are for the heat to acquire both odom and boozer, and if they do would they be a top 3 team in the east?
John Hollinger (3:54 PM)
top 4, certainly -- breaking into that top 3 is a tall order though. I think they have a better shot at Boozer than at Odom, I suspect the Odom thing is more a leverage play by Lamar's agent but Utah's dead serious about moving Booz.
Whats going on with Marvin Williams? What kind of money do you think he is worth? Any sign and trades possibilities for him? Will the Hawks keep him?
John Hollinger (3:55 PM)
I'm pretty sure he'll end up playing for the qualifying offer, which in his case is a rather large $7 million because he was the second overall pick. Can't imagine the Hawks are in a big hurry to pay him that kind of money for more than a year, so I bet they'll try again next summer.
What's holding up Hinrich-Thomas-Boozer-Blazers? Seems like a win-win-win, and gives the Bulls even more cap space in 2010...
John Hollinger (3:57 PM)
Bulls want something extra from Portland if they're going to include Tyrus Thomas, but Blazers don't want to part with their prospects.
Turk easily better than V. Carter? Ratliff best big man left? I'm almost embarrassed to post on here today. Who's starting in Washington back court next to Arenas? Are they setting up to play small and fast next year with Butler and Jamison up front and a 3 guard rotation?
John Hollinger (3:59 PM)
Maybe they're crazy from the heat. Or the Heat. At any rate, I suspect the Wiz will start Mike Miller at the 2 and then bring Foye off the bench. I'm thinking DeShawn Stevenson is trade bait and McGuire will only see spot duty. No way they're going to put Jamison at 5 and Butler at 4 though -- they'll give up 143 points a game.
Any logic behind the Sixers going after David Lee?
John Hollinger (4:00 PM)
None. Sixers are already at NEXT year's tax line and have had horrific crowds (ie revenue), which is why they could only offer Andre Miller a one-year deal. They're not going to be players for any free agent except minimum-type guys.
Why are you always hating on Canada? Do you have smth against the raptors? Have you ever even been to Toronto?
John Hollinger (4:02 PM)
It's soooo easy to push the Raps' fans buttons ... been to Canada plenty, yes, and the Banff area in particular is on my all-time list of favorites.
Do you think the Bucks keeping Sessions would be in the way of developing Brandon Jennings into a star?
John Hollinger (4:03 PM)
Not in the least. It's probably going to be at least two years before Jennings is ready to start anyway, and Sessions has shown he can be effective playing the 2.
Dr. Buss (Staples Ctr, LA)
Do you think I'm bluffing as well??? Note-I got the leverage not LO!
John Hollinger (4:05 PM)
That's what's so funny -- neither side has any cards, but they keep raising the pot anyway. L.A. has no alternative if Lamar leaves, and Lamar has nobody else who will pay him as much money (the tax difference with Fla/Texas is overrated by the way -- worth under $1 million a yr at most, and possibly less if he has a good accountant.)
Are the Kings planning on doing... well... anything? It's been crickets out of Sactown.
John Hollinger (4:06 PM)
They've sniffed at a couple things, but they're another team with an awful revenue situation and they're being verrrrry careful right now. Surprised nobody has approached them about renting their cap space, but I guess everybody's first call on those deals is to Memphis.
John Hollinger (4:08 PM)
Odd offseason in Houston -- they spent $8 million on obtaining the rights to four second-round picks (the three they used and David Andersen) ... Presuming Yao doesn't play, I think their best-case scenario is 45-37 and a six seed; more likely they win in the 30s. (LATE NTOTE: apparently the question didn't show up; a reader asked about the Rockets' prospects for this season).
Hi John. Are the Nuggets done in free agency? Will they keep Klezia? And can the Nuggets make it to at least the Western Conference Finals with there current roster? Thanks John
John Hollinger (4:10 PM)
I'd be shocked if they end up keeping Kleiza, but I suppose the arms race out West could lead them to reconsider. They'll bring back Anthony Carter on a minimum deal and that's probably it -- Carter takes the roster to 14, so they don't need to anything else and since they're over the tax they probably won't.
What's the latest on Andre Miller? Is his age that much of a concern that teams can't/won't offer him a long term deal, or is there just not enough money to go around?
John Hollinger (4:11 PM)
the latter. Portland's disinterest was an absolute killer for him, now he doesn't have any place to go to raise the bidding. He has to be bummed that Jason Kidd got 3-25 and he can't even get a multiyear deal, given that he outplayed Kidd last year and is younger.
Just admit it already.... the Raptors will finish between 4 and 7 in the East.
John Hollinger (4:13 PM)
Think that's a pretty good possibility, yes. Atlanta, Chicago, Washington, Miami in that conversation as well.
Mike (Gaithersburg, MD)
How is Portland really that much better than Utah? Utah was barely worse last year despite more injuries than almost anyone
John Hollinger (4:15 PM)
Portland had the best point differential in basketball after the All-Star break and most of their players are still improving. Jazz are definitely subtracting either Booz or Millsap and weren't as good as Blazers a year ago.
AI to the Clippers? Thoughts?
John Hollinger (4:17 PM)
Getting a lot of questions on this. I think he can help if he's willing to accept that he's a 25-minute guy who will be the third option most of the time, i just have no idea if he's willing to do so.
your lil buddy next to you needs to quit ignoring the Indiana Pacers Questions.
John Hollinger (4:19 PM)
Sorry, there's just not a lot to say about he Pacers right now. They overpaid for Dahntay Jones, they aren't signing anyone else given their tax situation and probably won't match the offer sheet for Jack, and they aren't any closer to moving Tinsley.
Please name one starting PG in the NBA worse than Derek Fisher.
John Hollinger (4:20 PM)
I take it you didn't see Sebastian Telfair or Beno Udrih last year.
Sammy (Los Angeles)
With Houston's playoff spot up for grabs, who do you think grabs it? What are the chances OKC sneaks in?
John Hollinger (4:23 PM)
Remember, Phoenix is in that picture too and still has a good team if Amare is ready to go. OKC has a shot, but the Clippers might have a better one; Golden State is a possibility too.
John Hollinger (4:24 PM)
Folks, that's all the time I have but thanks again for all the great questions. We'll do this again in two weeks.