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December 7, 12:00 PM ET
Chat with David Thorpe

David Thorpe
  (12:01 PM)

Hey Sportsnation, it's cold in Clearwater! Well, relatively speaking it's cold. 50's and sunny. I love it. I have a nice warm mug of hot cocoa sitting next to me, so I'm ready to chat. Let's do this."Who's the nimble little dwarf you got throwing knives at me and my partner?!!!"

Tom (Coventry, United Kingdom)

A few summers ago Rondo worked with Mark Price at his shooting, and while his shot is much better, it is still not NBA- standard, and his FT shooting is horrific. Can he improve drastically a la Jason Kidd, or is he just someone who cannot shoot. Also where to you see Boston post big three. Are Rondo, Big Baby and Perk good enough to build around and attract FA. Thanks

David Thorpe
  (12:02 PM)

I do think he can get better. I don't know Price at all, but was Einstein a great teacher? Not every great shooter is a great teacher. Or perhaps Rondo has been a bad student. No, those guys are not good enough to build around, other than Rondo.

Paul (Portland, OR)

I'll keep my question as succinct as your answers: What can the Blazers do to right the ship?

David Thorpe
  (12:03 PM)

I'm honestly not sure.

Harry (Babylon)

Should we temper our glee about how well the Knicks are playing until they get through their tough holiday schedule?

David Thorpe
  (12:03 PM)

Ye3s, but be happy for the clear progress that they have made.

Wes (NC)

Is Serge Ibaka good enough to help the thunder compete for a championship in the future?

David Thorpe
  (12:04 PM)

I love him, and yes, he should be a good rotation player.

Chris (Burlington (B-Town))

Thorpedo! Love your info. In your opinion, what is a realistic move that the Magic can pull off in order to make themselves a legit title contender? Right now I can't say that they are.

David Thorpe
  (12:04 PM)

Something with Gortat is a must.

Noah (Los Angeles, CA)

Suns need to make a trade, right? A lot of good wings, very few quality bigs.

David Thorpe
  (12:05 PM)

They are in no man's land.

Johnson (Atlanta)

How good can Kevin Love be? Averaging 20-15 especially at age 22 is insane! Thanks Coach

David Thorpe
  (12:05 PM)

He's astounding. And still not in the kind of shape he can get to.

Noah (Champaign)

"Jane, since I've met you, I've noticed things that I never knew were there before... birds singing, dew glistening on a newly formed leaf, stoplights."what up coach! Look out for those bulls! Boozer makes life so much easier for the rest of the team, and Luol really made life hard for Durant and is shooting well from 3. How many teams are more complete than the bulls? I count 4 (lakers, celtics, spurs, magic)

David Thorpe
  (12:06 PM)

RIP Leslie. You will be sorely missed. The Bulls have a chance to be special, though probably still a 2 guard away.

Brodie (Macomb, IL)

Derrick Rose is a legitimate MVP candidate. Time for you to acknowledge this

David Thorpe
  (12:07 PM)

Done, though he is not top 4 on the list. Still, he's awesome enough.

Al (Hershey, PA)

Can Evan Turner be fixed?

David Thorpe
  (12:07 PM)

Probably, if he's willing.

Rashard Lewis (Missing in Action, FL)

Help, I cannot shoot or do anything this year. Can I get better? On the bright side I am have $65 million left on my contract......

David Thorpe
  (12:08 PM)

There is irony to his deal. It was thought to be the key to putting them over the top, and is probably what's keeping them from getting there.

Jim (Chicago )

Hi David, Love your chats. Would you consider luol Deng an under rated player? His defense is greatly under rated and when agressive can be an effective 3 rd option

David Thorpe
  (12:09 PM)

Underrated in the sense that people pan him for not being worth his contract, as if he's a scrub. He's no scrub.

Jess (NYC)

Thoughts on Melo's status? He doesn't have to sign an extension if they want to trade him... any chance he goes into the offseason a Nugget?

David Thorpe
  (12:09 PM)

None.

Michael C. (Westport, CT)

Shouldn't the Knicks' Anthony Randolph be sent to the Development League? What's the point of having him waste away on the bench at such a young age?

David Thorpe
  (12:09 PM)

It's a sad story. He'd crush the D-League.

Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)

Who do you think is the worst NBA team so far this season?

David Thorpe
  (12:10 PM)

There is only one choice. The Kings.

Dan (Miami Beach FL)

They say that the NBA is a playewr's league, but can you see anyone making the Lakers successful next year if Phil leaves? It would mean teaching a bunch of old dogs new tricks if they abandon the triangle, and Gasol, Odom and Kobe probably aren't up to the running game at this stage of their careers. Enjoying this year, but really worried about next.

David Thorpe
  (12:11 PM)

I don't know who "they" is, but I've been saying for decades that it's a coaches league.

Nate (Madison)

Have you gotten a chance to watch Larry Sanders now that he's getting a little more playing time with the Bucks.

David Thorpe
  (12:12 PM)

Yes, he's an interesting player. I'm doing a "redraft" for the top 10 picks and he makes the list. Coming out tomorrow. Any of you have a new top 10 picks if the draft were held today?

Disco (Chicago)

Please compare Batum's ceiling to another player

David Thorpe
  (12:12 PM)

Better than Deng?

Disco (Chicago)

What about Twill crushing the D-League, yet Avery hates him so he'd just ride the pine for the Nets right

David Thorpe
  (12:12 PM)

I think he'll play and play well.

Wes (NC)

How much is mike miller going to help the heat when he is able to return to action?

David Thorpe
  (12:13 PM)

He's going to be a huge impact guy.

Alex (Houston)

Do you see the Rockets trading Aaron Brooks or Kevin Martin sometime soon? They work offensivly but are brutal together on defense.

David Thorpe
  (12:13 PM)

They might be bad together on d. We won't know until they play together. Perhaps they'll bring Brooks off the bench. Until they get bigs inside who can protect the rim, no one will look good on d for them.

Chris (Long Island)

David, ESPN has such a lovefest with certain teams....the heat won a few games now there front and center with per game grades....what is going on here?? I personally dont care and hope they lose.

David Thorpe
  (12:15 PM)

I'll explain it like this. The nba section at espn.com reacts to what people want to see. If traffic would be horrible for a given article, it will not get as much "front and center" attention. The Heat, despite your thoughts, are overwhelmingly interesting to readers, and consequently, they get top billing. Do you really think the editors care about one team over another?

Erica (Miami)

What is the bigger problem for the Heat the point position or the center position? Will Dexter Pittman give the Heat an good minutes this season?

David Thorpe
  (12:16 PM)

Center is the worst spot, and no, I don't expect much from Dexter.

Jim (Red Wing, MN)

Don't want to sound crazy, but...might the ceiling be a bit higher now for the wolves season given Love's breaking out, Beasley's scoring, Darko's surprising play, and the pending return of Martell Webster? Not saying that they're playoff material, but just maybe not as bad as everyone thought?

David Thorpe
  (12:17 PM)

Let me say this-they can be very good many nights, at least for long spells. But only when Darko shows up. They are better than their record.

David Thorpe
  (12:17 PM)

Oops, I meant to say Leslie, please RIP.

Kevin (Danbury, CT)

Is Amare Stoudamire the early choice for MVP? He has led a complete 180 of a 10 year disfunction with the Knicks.

David Thorpe
  (12:18 PM)

He's in the running, I think. I was thinking exactly that last night.

Disco (Chicago)

Do you think Kyrie Irving would go #1 if the Kings have that pick?

David Thorpe
  (12:18 PM)

I would not begin to pretend to have any clue what those guys think out there. But yes, he'd fill a void.

John (Houston)

Lol @ Chris for saying "I personally don't care" and "I hope they lose" in the same breath. Contradictory, no?

David Thorpe
  (12:19 PM)

John, you are wise.

kshiz (Chicago)

Brandon Roy still seems to be ailing. Is Wesley Matthews/Nicolas Batum the future of that franchise?

David Thorpe
  (12:19 PM)

They are solid guys, but will not be enough.

kshiz (Chicago)

Do you see Rodrigue Beaubois carving out a role when he returns? Caron Butler has been playing better as of late ...

David Thorpe
  (12:20 PM)

I do, yes. Though JJ Barea helps them a lot. I love that guy.

Jason (Toronto)

Is Gasol the best big man in the nba? where do amare, dirk, howard and love rank in relation?

David Thorpe
  (12:21 PM)

I'd go with him and D12.

Rob (Chicago)

How about Kevin Martin to the Bulls?

David Thorpe
  (12:22 PM)

I don't think Chicago has the assets to get him. Be patient Chicago and see how things go for you now that Boozer has returned.

Az (Chicago)

If you re-did the top 10 picks for the 2009 draft, would taj gibson be top 10?

David Thorpe
  (12:22 PM)

At first thought, probably. I'm a fan.

jason (toronto)

If you were to have Demar DeRozan for the summer, what where would you start? handles? shot? How would you help him reach his potential?

David Thorpe
  (12:23 PM)

Probably focus on learning how to play the complete game, and working on his deep jumper.

CJ (Chilly Florida)

What team is your pick to come on strong - mid to late season - and surprise everyone?

David Thorpe
  (12:24 PM)

If I knew Yao would be 80-90%, I'd pick Houston. But I'll lean to Chicago, OKC, and maybe the Bucks.

Cullen (Redemption Town)

My friend Di still think that Kevin Love for OJ Mayo was a good trade for the grizzlies, would you agree?

David Thorpe
  (12:24 PM)

Um, no chance in hell.

Dennis (Toronto)

Amare doesn't seem to be missing Steve Nash as much as Nash seems to be missing Amare!

David Thorpe
  (12:24 PM)

That's more of a reflection of who their replacements are.

Wes (NC)

Who is more talented and who has a higher ceiling OJ Mayo or Xavier Henry?

David Thorpe
  (12:25 PM)

Lean to Henry, but they are similar.

Nate (Madison)

Hornets moving to Seattle, fan or no?

David Thorpe
  (12:26 PM)

I wish Bill Gates would buy the Hornets and spend like they were the Yankees, delivering a winner every year to that city.

Warren (TN)

Watching the Knicks afraid to drive at Darko last night was kind of a revelation - I think I underestimated the value of a rim-protecting big man on D. But every team has some big bodies. What makes one big guy have that kind of impact and not another?

David Thorpe
  (12:26 PM)

Length, willingness to spend time in the paint.

VW (NYC)

Is Tyson Chandler for real this year?

David Thorpe
  (12:26 PM)

Yes.

Disco (Chicago)

What do you think of Javalator's game? (JaVale McGee)

David Thorpe
  (12:27 PM)

Best athlete for his size in the NBA. Not much else going for him, except he's getting better hands.

matt (nyc)

Can Brandon Rush be a consistent NBA starter?

David Thorpe
  (12:27 PM)

Yes, but he'll be consistently average I'd fear.

James (NYC)

If you you re-did the 2009 draft, would Haseem Thabeet even get drafted?

David Thorpe
  (12:27 PM)

Not in the lottery.

kshiz (Chicago)

Thorpedo! Is "injury-proneness" correlated with laziness? Seems like Baron Davis, Tracy McGrady ... makes me wonder?

David Thorpe
  (12:28 PM)

It can be, but there are many more variables involved, including skeleton, body mass, etc.

Mark (NY)

Coach - you mention JaVale McGee is getting better hands. How does one work on that specifically? What sort of drills?

David Thorpe
  (12:29 PM)

I'm noticing a lot more above the rim boards with arms extended. That takes strong hands. And lots of practice doing that sort of thing.

kshiz (Chicago)

Shaun Livingston seems to be playing well again. Good for him. Will he ever be a starter in the league?

David Thorpe
  (12:30 PM)

Honestly, I thought he was mostly recovered two years ago. I liked him then when he was with OKC. I think he can be a starter, yes.

Brian (Providence)

Shannon Brown candidate for MIP?

David Thorpe
  (12:30 PM)

Yes.

David Thorpe
  (12:30 PM)

Yes.

Wes (NC)

What are your thoughts on Ed Davis? How good can he be?

David Thorpe
  (12:31 PM)

He's got considerable upside because he just might be able to score pretty well.

Dennis (Toronto)

Which eastern conference team matches up best with the Celtics?

David Thorpe
  (12:31 PM)

it does not matter now, ask again after the trade deadline has passed.

tim (dallas)

Terrence Williams really should be a starter...I just don't buy Outlaw or Morrow as NBA caliber starters, they have certain NBA skill-sets, but have no business playing more minutes than TWill (IMO)...Thoughts?

David Thorpe
  (12:32 PM)

Agreed, if he shows up to practice on time.

kshiz (Chicago)

Should OKC extend Jeff Green - or are they better off with a frontcourt of Serge Ibaka/Cole Aldrich or ______ long term?

David Thorpe
  (12:33 PM)

If they can get him to agree to a good number, yes. But I think that option is expired now. He'll be a RFA, right?

Chad Wilkerson (Greensboro)

On twitter last night ....you said that Love was most efficient shooter in the NBA....Better than Steve Nash?

David Thorpe
  (12:33 PM)

I meant his mechanics, and Nash is very similar in his delivery.

Harry (Babylon, NY)

Is this Raymond Felton's breakout year similar to Chauncey Billups when he landed in Detroit?

David Thorpe
  (12:33 PM)

Great call!!

Jerry (Texas)

Would OJ Mayo be a good fit in Chicago next to Rose?

David Thorpe
  (12:34 PM)

Possibly. There are things I like about that combo.

tim (dallas)

Are we really supposed to believe D'Antoni when he tries to convince us that Anthony Randolph isn't ready to play, while at the same, he's giving minutes to guys like Shawne Williams, Tim Mozgov, Ronny Turiaf, Toney Douglas, and Landry Fields (who I rather like)?...if anyone's actually seen Randolph play, this should make ZERO sense to them...seems more like an inter-personal matter to me, would you agree?

David Thorpe
  (12:35 PM)

I agree Tim. With you.

Nick (Wisco)

Landry Fields, Eric Bledsoe and perhaps Armon Johnson should be drafted in the top 10 (along with perhaps Larry Saunders).

David Thorpe
  (12:36 PM)

I don't agree on Johnson, but yes to the other 3.

B ('lando)

Love more efficient than Ray ray?

David Thorpe
  (12:36 PM)

His shot is, yes. Ray moves the ball slightly backwards before he releases.

Jared (Philly)

Since it seems, although it is early, that Gordon Hayward will not be that good, who should the Jazz have taken in the draft?

David Thorpe
  (12:36 PM)

In my redraft, I have them taking Wes Johnson.

kshiz (Chicago)

Reports that the lockout would make this Kevin Garnett's last season is depressing. What do you predict - lockout or game on?!

David Thorpe
  (12:37 PM)

Game on.

Michael (Milwaukee)

Did Even Turner drop out of the top 10?

David Thorpe
  (12:37 PM)

Yes, and he should be thankful I didn't do a top 20. :)

Leland (Pittsburgh)

would steve nash be a good fit for the magic? would they even entertain trying to deal for him?

David Thorpe
  (12:37 PM)

Holy cow would he be amazing.

Matt (California)

Everyone falls in love with players putting up big numbers under D'antoni... When will people learn that its just more possesions which cause people to have inflated number?

David Thorpe
  (12:38 PM)

That's why we have PER, Matt.

Ben (Chicago)

Who are your favorite guys to watch work off the ball on offense?

David Thorpe
  (12:38 PM)

Are you ready for this??? Ronnie Brewer.

Leland (Pittsburgh)

follow up on nash to magic, how would that effect jameer nelson's minutes? Does nash start on the magic team?

David Thorpe
  (12:39 PM)

Yes of course he starts. Nelson can come off pine or go to Phoenix.

JP (Columbus, OH)

Chad Ford was asked in a chat if he could form his own "Big 3" using any NBA players, who would he choose? He said CP3, Dwight, and Durant. How would you answer the same question, David?

David Thorpe
  (12:40 PM)

CP3, LeBron, Dwight. Yep, that'll do it. And I'll buy the Hornets and move them to Clearwater.

Warren (TN)

Who goes #2 in the redraft? Favors shown enough upside?

David Thorpe
  (12:41 PM)

You'll soon see.

Chad Wilkerson (Greensboro)

Where does JJ Reddick rank for efficiency with his shot?

David Thorpe
  (12:41 PM)

Very high. Needs more legs than Love.

kshiz (Chicago)

What would you recommend to Joe Dumars right now - blow up that team or stay the course?

David Thorpe
  (12:42 PM)

To quote the Heat announcer (my favorite of all 30 teams), "Kaboom".

RoytheBoy (Cleveland)

Have you heard the Iggy to Cleveland rumor? Why would we wanna give up our young talent for him? I DONT WANNA WIN NOW!

David Thorpe
  (12:42 PM)

Agreed.

Rob (LA)

2010 Redraft: 1. Wall 2. favors 3. Cousins 4. Aminu 5. Bledsoe 6. Wes Johnson 7. James Anderson 8. L. Fields 9. Larry Sanders 10. Ed Davis ... still need to see Ekpe Udoh and Avery Bradley. Thoughts?

David Thorpe
  (12:42 PM)

Very very good.

John (NY)

PER does not account for real defensive performance however..

David Thorpe
  (12:43 PM)

Not remotely. It's just one tool to use.

Dennis (Toronto)

Which current NBA'er would make the best MMA fighter?

David Thorpe
  (12:44 PM)

Griffin would be great. But the toughest guy in this league is still Udonis Haslem. Did you read how he wanted to be in Cleveland with his team, despite being on one leg? If something "went down", he'd be the first guy LeBron ran behind.

Mindo (Houston)

anthony randolph to houston in a 3-team trade that lands carmelo in NY? houston has the picks and expiring contracts to help NY land him.

David Thorpe
  (12:44 PM)

I think it's a possibility.

tim (dallas)

I know NOTHING about MMA, but James Johnson and martial arts prowess has to be the answer to Dennis' question. (check out JJ's backstory...wow)

David Thorpe
  (12:45 PM)

Udonis would choke him out in 10 seconds.

Warren (TN)

Bigs still decide playoff games and there are so few quality ones. I'd go Dwight, Gasol, Durant. No one beats that frontcourt, ever. Just fill the roster with shooters and a PG that can start an offense.

David Thorpe
  (12:45 PM)

Excellent points.

Rob (Los Angeles)

What position should Ron Artest play in football?

David Thorpe
  (12:46 PM)

Now? Waterboy. In his prime, defensive tackle.

John (Houston)

Follow up to the Heat announcer being your favorite, which other local crews are in your top 5?

David Thorpe
  (12:47 PM)

I liked the guys from Memphis, folksy but fun and smart. Did they change color guys? Lakers crew always so professional. Utah's too. Magic guys are very good too.

David Thorpe
  (12:48 PM)

Oh, and the guys from Minny are improving and actually pretty good.

Chris (Los Angeles, CA)

David, what do the Kings need to kick it up a notch? Make a big free agent signing in the offseason, or just continue to develop and add minor pieces?

David Thorpe
  (12:49 PM)

They've been "developing" since 2006. Can you say "Kaboom", only direct it upwards?

Jo (Houston)

You're a mean man, Mr. Thorpe!

David Thorpe
  (12:50 PM)

Really? Sorry to offend.

kshiz (Chicago)

Please say Tommy Points!!!

David Thorpe
  (12:50 PM)

Ugh. Homer points is more like it. Celts and Spurs have terrific organizations, but their tv guys are not remotely objective or particularly informed.

Dennis (Toronto)

My 3 year old son plays basketball at home a good 2-3 hours a day. I can't get him to stop! Is it too early to enroll him in a program and get some coaching?

David Thorpe
  (12:51 PM)

Yes. He's doing fine now as is. Focus on getting him potty trained.

Jonathan (LA)

Kobe's shooting mechanics?

David Thorpe
  (12:52 PM)

Not great, most of the time. But his follow through is world class oftentimes.

Jon (MN)

When can we expect this mythical redraft you speak of?

David Thorpe
  (12:52 PM)

Tomorrow I'd guess.

Mark (New York (Miami fan))

since you are such a big Udonis fan, Eric Reid (heat announcers) best and only quote as Udonis shoots the ball: Udonis? U did it!

David Thorpe
  (12:53 PM)

I have not heard that-but it's good.

David Thorpe
  (12:54 PM)

Sorry everyone to cut it short today, but I have to get running. I hope you have a great week. Tbanks for all the great questions. I'm at David B. Thorpe on Facebook, or @coachthorpe on Twitter. Be safe!