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March 6, 12:00 PM ET
Chat with David Thorpe

David Thorpe
  (12:02 PM)

Hey everyone, thanks for stopping by for a friendly chat. "Aim for the flat top!!"

kevin (chicago)

David, I respect you basetball mind but what gives with you not giving D.Rose the credit he deserves. I believe you stated he wasn't in your top 3 pg in the NBA. I wasn't sold on D.Rose when he first came into the league but I am now.

David Thorpe
  (12:03 PM)

Not thinking he's better than just a few people on earth is not equal to not giving him credit.

Dan (CA)

Haslem is only shooting 20% on jumpers 5 to 15 ft. out. What's going on with him, and do you think Lebron made the right play against Utah factoring in UD's troubles?

David Thorpe
  (12:04 PM)

Injuries have kept him from working on his game each summer the past 4 seasons or so. I see a few faults on his jumper.

Marc (Philly)

Coach - the 76ers NEED a closer at end of games. Lou Williams is not the answer. Iguodala is an excellent "Robin" but needs a "Batman"

David Thorpe
  (12:05 PM)

I hate the "closer" argument, and Lou almost saved Philly last night by himself. There is a need for better shooter and better actions more than just a "closer". This is not baseball.

JJ (SJ,CA)

safe to go ahead and say Irving is better than Wall?

David Thorpe
  (12:06 PM)

Better today? Maybe. Better tomorrow? Only a possibility. Nature gave Wall a slight advantage, Irving has been nurtured better by a hair. The future is not scripted.

Damon (Santa Cruz)

With the trade deadline looming, what moves can the Jazz do to hopefully save the season?

David Thorpe
  (12:06 PM)

I think it's a mistake to try to get to the 8th spot. I think by adding a few more picks they can really build a special team.

Devlin (Bemidji, MN)

David, thanks for being my facebook friend and for being such a positive role model to all males. My question relates to the Wolves, now that they are relevant again, (we have 3 wins over LAC, 2 apiece vs SA and DAL) is Rubio that much of a difference maker, or is it more Rick Adelman's system? Also, watching Blake Griffin shoot FT's is terrible, is it because his elbow is in bad position causing him to "push" free throws? Thanks.

David Thorpe
  (12:08 PM)

My pleasure Devlin. Rubio has been helpful, Adeleman even more so. Love and Pek dynamite inside probably has helped the most. Griffin has a hitch in his shot that makes it the opposite of what it should be; smooth and easy. It's jerky and tight and unnatural.

Jo Jo (The City)

What do you think is wrong with Ben Gordon's game? Can it be fixed? He seems to have no confidence and has lost the ability to dribble the ball without turning it over.

David Thorpe
  (12:10 PM)

It's literally one of the saddest stories in the NBA. If I could pick one player and say "you get to live the last 5 years over again-but you get to remember everything that has happened", he'd be the one. He was literally the best one on one scorer under 6'4 in the league.

Matt (San Diego)

Ghostbusters... Well played sir!!

David Thorpe
  (12:11 PM)

I remember seeing it in the summer of 1984 as a rising soph in college. Many of you were not yet born. We walked out of the theater knowing we had just seen an epic movie.

meech (akron ohio)

is anthony davis the best college player this year an your choice to be the number 1 selection

David Thorpe
  (12:11 PM)

Yes. Yes.

Mo (Chicago)

David, how do you feel about Chicago potentially pursuing Steven Jackson? His game seems like a good fit to bolster their squad, but what about his head? Thanks!

David Thorpe
  (12:11 PM)

His head is fine when in a good situation. Chicago is that.

Dan (Vancouver BC)

Happy "Wrecking Ball" Day to you sir! Is there any team "alive out there" with a realistic chance to beat the Heat 4 tiimes in a 7 game post-season series?series?

David Thorpe
  (12:12 PM)

Thanks for reminding me to buy Boss tix for his Tampa concert! Sure there are. But let's wait until the 16th to clear the air.

Marc (Phillly)

Coach, Respectfully, you may not like "closer" but as in baseball, if the team doesn't have a quality one, they won't go very far. 76ers are 0-7 in games decided by 4 points or less.

David Thorpe
  (12:14 PM)

Every math guy would say that close games are won randomly. I tend to give them more impact than that. But without Lou that game was not going to be close. He scored 8 straight to tighten it up in the last 2 mins. Philly's offense is primitive late in games.

Ryan (Denver)

Nuggets question for you, David. When everyone gets healthy, they may be TOO deep. Do you see them making any moves at the deadline?

David Thorpe
  (12:15 PM)

Great point. And they want to add Chandler. Yes, a move is fair to expect.

Chris (Porterville, CA)

How much do you use statistics in relation to your coaching? Do you use them at all in working with players? Or do you rely more on what you see and instincts?

David Thorpe
  (12:15 PM)

It's a mix and has been for 20+ years. I love the new stats that are out there and use them frequently.

Doug (Ohio)

Can a player, HS, College, Pro, learn to handle pressure late in games?

David Thorpe
  (12:16 PM)

Yes of course.

Myke (Salt Lake City)

In general, which do you think is better for a young player's development: playing 30-35 minutes on a losing team, or playing 15-20 minutes on a team competing for a playoff spot?

David Thorpe
  (12:16 PM)

Who the coach is-that's what matters most.

Hank (Dallas, TX)

who would you rather have coach, Iggy or Gay? and why?

David Thorpe
  (12:16 PM)

Iggy. Defense and passing.

Ricardo (Brazil)

Hi, Coach. Have you as a facebook friend is simply amazing, always bringing good stuff. Can Chandler Parsons be a perenial contribuitor for the Rockets with his dreadful offensive game? The guy is a Biedrins-type from the FT line.

David Thorpe
  (12:18 PM)

Thanks. My facebook friends inspire me as much as I do for them. Parsons has to get better as a shooter, period. But his defense and feel for the game will always bring value. I'd like to see Marcus Morris get a chance.

Byron B (Colorado)

Thorpe, i thought you were a moron for suggesting that Ken Faried would be a top player in this class. Now that we've seen him play, I;'m the moron. Remind me to never bet against you again.

David Thorpe
  (12:19 PM)

Done. But honestly it was low hanging fruit. "Super athleticism + a red hot motor 6'8 and long strong = PLAYER". It's a tried and true formula.

John (Boston)

Hi David - You hear a lot of varying opinions about Rajon Rondo. Do you think he is elite? Is he someone to build around? Finally, do you see anything in him that makes you think he could someday be even an average shooter? Thanks

David Thorpe
  (12:20 PM)

He is elite. He can be built around-as he makes teammates better. And yes, he can learn to shoot better, without doubt.

Chad (Duluth)

Hi David. I really like what I am seeing from the Wolves. Even with Pek out last night, they took down a good Clipper's team. Love is playing MVP caliber basketball right now and with the team winning, he has to be in the MVP discussion, right?

Tom (MPLS)

KLove's gonna get some MVP love right?

David Thorpe
  (12:21 PM)

I tweeted as much last night. He's making an argument that he's the second best player in the league.

Marc (Phillly)

Offensive sets at end of games are horribly primitive across the league. Rather than running plays, one guy dribbles and takes on the entire defense. LeBron is the one guy willing to pass in this situation and he gets grilled for it.

David Thorpe
  (12:22 PM)

I'm honestly a little sad for how the media handles Bron's late game passing. And that's all I have to say about that.

Sam (Toronto)

Hi David, Love your stuff! News flash, D.H. will be traded by the deadline. Lakers or Jersey to be sure. Nothing else makes any sense. My question is, which team is the most intriuging as a surprise seller down the stretch?

David Thorpe
  (12:23 PM)

You are asking me to consider what makes "sense" for a team that willingly traded for Arenas before paying him to go away?

eric (el paso, tx)

in your opinion which is more vital to a teams defensive success, great wing defender or great clog in the middle?

David Thorpe
  (12:23 PM)

Protecting the paint is priority one because that's where the highest fg% shots come from. But it's far more complex than that.

Dale (Madison, WI)

Coach, I love your chats, but I never understand why you post questions that include mean things about you, your looks, or your "lack" of intelligence. Can you explain, and also, can we be friends on Facebook?

David Thorpe
  (12:26 PM)

Dale, I want my chats to be fun to read. I find myself boring to read, to be honest, so I'm always afraid all of you will to. Real chats include zings and slings and arrows, why shouldn't online versions? I like the texture they bring to our hourly "talks". Yes, we can be friends, but on Facebook I only respond to nice people. David B. Thorpe on Fbook for anyone interested.

Darryl (Oakland, CA)

"best one on one scorer under 6'4 in the league..."That'd be Monta Ellis...and it's not that close...even with a good Ben Gordon. Only difference is East Coast Bias.

David Thorpe
  (12:26 PM)

That, and one of them could shoot from deep.

Matt (Philly)

A somewhat odd question: in the last few years people have come to talk about player's arm-span more. That makes sense. But every time I look at Chris Bosh, it seems to me that he has an unusually long neck. Might that not make him taller, but in a way that's of no or limited use to basketball? It won't help w/ rebounding or shooting, I think.

David Thorpe
  (12:28 PM)

I've been saying this for years. I've suggested to GM's that they measure height to the top of the shoulders plus the typical arm and wing span. Neck and head size have no bearing on the game.

Don (MN)

Ricky Rubio is exciting and elite in so many aspects, but he might have one of the worse shots i have seen in the NBA. who, how and when can he get it upgraded to passable?

David Thorpe
  (12:28 PM)

Agreed, and it's a problem going forward. I mention this in my upcoming rookie report.

Evan (Auburn, Ala.)

David, what have been your thoughts on Ty Lawson's play as of late?

David Thorpe
  (12:29 PM)

Amazing. I love him so much. Under control yet blindingly fast. Can make big shots but doe snot demand the ball at all times.

Matt (CA)

Is Wes Johnson a bust? Kid can't shoot. Wolves would be better starting M. Webster.

David Thorpe
  (12:30 PM)

He's a bust so far, but I wouldn't quit on him totally yet. Start him but feel free not to play him a lot.

Alec (Columbus)

Ric Bucher suggested this morning that the Lakers should consider trading Kobe. He's getting ripped for it, but I actually think this does make some sense. I'd be interested to hear your thoughts.

David Thorpe
  (12:31 PM)

I'd keep all options open. It's a business. But I wouldn't just get rid of him-it would have to make long term sense.

David (Toronto)

Can you say Jonas Valanciunas for Rookie of the Year 2012-2012?

David Thorpe
  (12:32 PM)

No, but he'll be in the running. Davis is going to be very good.

Rick (CA)

Were you ever any good at basketball?

David Thorpe
  (12:32 PM)

I'm told yes, but does it matter?

Stephan (MPLS)

Imagine if the Wolves had taken Cousins over Johnson in the draft! Pekovic, Love, and Cousins would have been dirty! Then they could have traded one of them for a wing (monta anyone?) Rubio, Monta, Beasley/DWill, Love, Cousins?

David Thorpe
  (12:33 PM)

We could play that game all day about Minny.

Warren (TN)

David, I like your videos with Henry Abbott. Only, SLOW DOWN! Holy cow man, are you trying to keep Starbucks in the fortune 500 single-handedly?

David Thorpe
  (12:34 PM)

Funny! You'd like to know that I've never had even a sip of coffee in my life. Henry likes those sessions to be fast-that's point. I think he's just trying to get me to say something stupid. Not that hard a trick to pull off.

Jeremy (NYC)

Is Tony Parker the most underappreciated player of the last 10 years - finals MVP, 3 rings, but never gets talked about in the top PG conversation.

David Thorpe
  (12:35 PM)

This is the question of the day. Well done. Parker is a surgeon with the ball.

DJ (Philly)

Is it time for the Sixers to give up and move on with Evan Turner? He's really struggling/failing to impress...

David Thorpe
  (12:36 PM)

No. But I would not hesitate to move him if it made sense.

Mike (Minny)

If you were T-wolves, would you keep Derrick Williams and let him develop, or would you dangle him as trade bait for a starting SG/SF?

David Thorpe
  (12:37 PM)

I think it's smart to always consider every option.

Matt (Cincinnati OH (formerly of Palm Harbor FL))

David - I respect your coaching and teaching acumen. I really like how you instruct coaches/parents on how to deal with young people. My question is regarding my 7 year old daughter. What games or drills would you recommend to develop athletic ability and a pure of love playing and competing?

David Thorpe
  (12:38 PM)

Thanks! I'd worry only about getting her to love to practice whatever sport you're aiming for. The other stuff can come later. Love has to come first before they start to really work.

Cameron (Redding, CA)

Jason Thompson, JJ Hickson, 2nd RP for Evan Turner. Who hangs up First

David Thorpe
  (12:39 PM)

You really think the Kings need another non-shooter that dribbles a lot?

Michael (Ohio)

Can you speak to how a coach and organization can shape an entire career? Seems like Wilt could have won the same titles as Russell, LBJ as Kobe, on and on. Agree?

David Thorpe
  (12:40 PM)

I think it's possible. We'll never know for sure. Some guys refuse to be coached.

Mike (Cleveland)

Hey Thorpe, if you were the GM of a team, who would be #'s 1-5 if you could re-draft the past three rookie classes altogether?

David Thorpe
  (12:40 PM)

Now that sounds like an excellent future article. I've done that before. Maybe time to do again.

Dominick (Alabama)

Is it just me of is wade getting overshaddowed some?Normal years hed be in the thick of the MVP race but this year he is not getting any love

David Thorpe
  (12:41 PM)

It's hard to win MVP when you are the 2nd best player on your team.

Joey (Laguna Niguel)

Any specific drills/adjustments/tips on improving ball handling and shooting?

David Thorpe
  (12:42 PM)

Ball handling-hammer nails.Shooting-good base, stay balanced, follow through.

Tyler (Salt Lake City)

The Jazz have two lottery picks in the mock draft, what other pick do they have besides theirs?

David Thorpe
  (12:43 PM)

Minny's I think-lottery protected.

meech (akron ohio)

do you think jimmer was the best selection the kings could have picked and to have him on the bench. thats not they way you trade in the draft and select a player to bench him right

David Thorpe
  (12:44 PM)

Faried next to Cousins. Wow.

John T (Eagan, MN)

I know you said you weren't going to address the LeBron passing thing, but I'll ask this question: assuming both players are in spots on the floor where they feel comfortable, an uncontested shot from an NBA player is pretty much always a better option than a contested shot from another player, regardess of their identities. Agreed?

David Thorpe
  (12:45 PM)

I try to never make sweeping comments about a single game or two. Over time, does his team win the most, and do they win titles. I'll criticize LeBron for being such a poor player in the Finals, yes. But to bash him for making a smart play in a single game that did not lead to a win, no I won't go there.

Doug (Ohio)

Your choice for season mvp so far?

David Thorpe
  (12:46 PM)

LeBronLoveWadeRoseDurant

John T (Eagan, MN)

No, Minny's got Utah's lottery-protected pick from the Al Jefferson trade.

David Thorpe
  (12:47 PM)

Right of course. That's what I meant-just blogged about this recently.

Warren (TN)

Love for MVP would just be another Rose for MVP. Fun story, but you're stealing from LeBron.

David Thorpe
  (12:48 PM)

Agreed, but there is almost half a season left.

Eric (London)

Bucher argued that Chris Paul is the league's 5th best PG. What's your opinion?

David Thorpe
  (12:49 PM)

Really? Man this league must be amazing if Paul is 5th best pg. He's #1 in my book.

Matthew (NY)

Is it just me or does Russell Westbrook shoot his jump shots on the way down? Is that preventing him from hitting them more consistently?

David Thorpe
  (12:50 PM)

He does sometimes. Which is fine from closer in, but it's a problem farther out.

David (UT)

Jazz own Golden State's top 7-protected pick, as well as their own Lottery-protected pick...

David Thorpe
  (12:50 PM)

Thanks David.

Jon (Denver)

Better performance: D-Will's 57-7-6 or Rondo's 18-20-17?

David Thorpe
  (12:51 PM)

Both astounding. I can't choose one over the other.

meech (akron ohio)

do you the if haslam would have hit the shot lebron would still get downplayed because he made the pass and won the game but nobody said anything when jordan passed to kerr or paxson and he is the best finisher in the game

David Thorpe
  (12:52 PM)

Bron will be hammered until he wins at least one title, and then again every time he does not win. Comes with the territory when you name yourself "King".

Jefe (Vegas)

Could Minny be a legit force in the next couple years? Most of their games are really close and they have lost several by 5 points or less.

David Thorpe
  (12:53 PM)

I think so, yes.

David Thorpe
  (12:54 PM)

That's all I have for today. Thanks everyone. Be safe this week.