5 min read

Fast Break Rumblings: Reader Edition

Some thoughts with a little help from my friends. There were a couple interesting comments recently that I wanted to make sure didn’t get missed. Oh, and a TV show you should be watching.

  • Reader Ransom had an outstanding observation about the combine numbers: “So while its not really Thunder related, does anyone else find it odd/funny/disturbing that Dwight Howard dunked a basketball easily on a 12-foot rim, yet no one in this years draft combine could even touch a 12 foot rim if they tried?” I never even considered that. I have an all new appreciation for Howard’s dunk now. He made it look so easy that no one was really all that impressed at the time. But if you look at Blake Griffin, a guy that is an incredible athlete, only got to 11-feet, 8.5-inches. And Howard dunked two-handed, EASILY on a 12-foot rim. Unreal. This truly blows my mind.
  • I hate to be “that guy” but with the Finals starting tonight, I’m really just hoping for a good series. I didn’t even really care all that much about the Kobe-LeBron thing. As long as the games are good, it could be Pietrus-Fisher and I wouldn’t care. Plus, we do get to maybe settle the Morrison-Redick debate once and for all.
  • I’m really going to have a close eye on Trevor Ariza this series. He’s had a really nice postseason and you have to be careful of rewarding a player with a big contract just based on that, but it’s hard to ignore him. He’s an unrestricted free agent this summer and though he would probably be another more expensive Thabo Sefolosha, you always better with two good players instead of one. I have a feeling Ariza is going to want big time money and OKC isn’t going to offer that, but still, the Thunder is going to be a major player in this market and Ariza is going to be a pretty good prize.
  • Speaking of, this series has got a couple of potential targets. Of course Ariza, but then there’s also everybody’s favorite Polishman, Marcin Gortat. Hedo Turkoglu has an ETO, Lamar Odom is unrestricted and even Shannon Brown, who has played well in spurts, is open. Not everyone fits OKC, but there’s definitely reason to watch. While you want to see a guy like Gortat play well in his minutes, you don’t want him to play too well if Presti is really targeting him because every extra rebound, every extra block, every extra point is a couple more thousand tacked onto that salary.
  • Reader Jax has come up with some interesting in-house trades: “Here’s a trade that I’d love to see; swap jumpshots between Damien and Thabo. To even things up, we’ll also trade hairstyles, and extend Damien’s contract for another 3 years … The next in-team trade I make is between Swift and Green. Jeff keeps all his normal talent, but get’s Robert’s height. He’s no longer playing out of position, and his matchups with other teams is a nightmare. To even things out, Jeff also has to take on the red afro hairdoo and the tattos and the emo fingernails, making him the weirdest looking African American ever. Robert gets to shed his freak show routine, and return to normal life as an average citizen, except with a very cool 3-year NBA salary in his backpocket. To sweeten the deal, we give him an assistant coaching position with the Drillers.” I must say, I love both deals. I bet Big Robert wouldn’t veto that deal either.
  • In discussing whether it’s about a good rotation or solid lineups, reader Crow had some good information: “Of the 6 playoff teams without a top 50 most used in the league regular season lineup that was +5 or better per 48 minutes, four teams lost in the first round and the two that won beat teams also without such a lineup. Six of the top seven most used lineups that were +9 or better per 48 minutes made it to the second round or better with one having to be eliminated as being the only such team (Portland) to face a first round opponent with the same attribute. Lineups play basketball. Rotations and teams don’t, directly. Only three 5-man lineups that work or don’t.” I don’t have my brain completely wrapped around that type of stuff, but that stat made sense and was pretty revealing.
  • So here’s the running list of who Oklahoma City is supposedly “high on” or “interested in” right now: Ricky Rubio, Blake Griffin, DeMar DeRozen, Stephen Curry, Jrue Holliday, James Harden, Hasheem Thabeet, Jordan Hill and B.J. Mullens. And that’s just who various media outlets have said. Can we just say that Presti and Co. are high on players projected to go in the first round? Wouldn’t that be a safe assumption? “The Thunder are interested in players that are in this draft that are projected to be taken in the first 25 picks.” I don’t think it would really make sense for OKC to not be at least interested in first round players. They aren’t the Oakland Raiders you know.
  • You know one major thing you have to consider when talking about potential draft picks or potential free agents is, “Can I picture them in a Thunder uniform?” At least that’s something I consider. They need to pass that test. James Harden and Steph Curry I absolutely can. Ricky Rubio I’m kind of lukewarm on. I see it, but don’t see it at the same time. Jordan Hill and Hasheem Thabeet, I don’t see. I have trouble picturing Carlos Boozer or Chris Bosh in one too. They just don’t seem to look right. I’m sure Sam Presti takes these things into account when making a decision. He’s very thorough you know.
  • Nobody was more sad about the Cavs getting eliminated than my wife. For some unknown reason she has developed a complete fascination with Mo Williams. She loves the idea that he was a relative unknown but then went to Cleveland to play with LeBron and now is a semi-household name. I guess that is pretty cool. To which she asked me the other day while we were talking about her weird fandom of Mo – could Kevin Durant be that kind of guy to turn things around for a guy? And I guess so. KD really isn’t the distributor like LeBron, but Durant could absolutely inflate a point guards stats. That’s not a free pass to keep Earl Watson around or anything though. I’m talking about other point guards. Like Russell Westbrook or someone else.
  • Just letting you know, maybe my favorite show on TV right now is Pitchmen. I can’t get enough of it. I even caught myself at Target the other day looking at this shelf that had “As Seen on TV” products trying to find things Billy Mays had pitched. And I must admit, if I would have seen something that was on the show, I would have bought it. But wait, there’s more! Well, not really. Watch Pitchmen. It’s good.