I watched Spike Lee’s 1998 drama (??) He Got Game starring Denzel Washington and Miami Heat guard Ray Allen for the first time Tuesday night.  Seriously.  I was scanning through my guide and saw that it was scheduled to air on BET so I flipped accordingly.  To my dismay, while He Got Game was listed, some sort of comedy that I knew couldn’t be He Got Game was airing and I was left with disappointment.

I didn’t have anything better to do and decided it was a shame that I had never seen the movie in question so I took to Youtube to find a copy.  Luckily, someone had uploaded a full length version.  So I sat and watched the full two hours on my laptop.

[read more…]

in essays

Two days ago, fellow TrueHoop scribe Sean Highkin wrote a thought provoking piece on Hardwood Paroxysm about the rookie extension, and why small market organizations ducking for cover in the Super Team age can no longer take comfort in re-signing their homegrown prospects. The NBA is busy shifting to a place where teams like the Magic, Trail Blazers, Jazz, Pacers, and Timberwolves are forced to re-adjust their expectations in regards to how long they can realistically milk franchise players, resulting in a league where the rich get even richer, and the poor are continuously searching for a way to compete.

Had the Jazz waited until last offseason to trade [Deron] Williams, they would have likely run into many of the same complications the Hornets and Magic did when attempting to move Paul and Howard. A star’s openness to staying with his new team long term affects the offers his old team will receive. The longer a team with a star soon to hit the open market and no chance at a title waits to act, the smaller their leverage is. By trading Williams earlier than they had to, the Jazz were able to maximize their return. This is something the Portland Trail Blazers should take to heart before LaMarcus Aldridge’s contract is up in 2015.

With Houston currently deploying a “youth movement” that my gut tells me is only a facade to appease a fan base once promised a nightly Herculean effort from Dwight Howard, the last sentence in Highkin’s paragraph got me thinking. The Rockets are still in the hunt for a superstar, and will be until they get one. Please don’t let anything else fool you. Aldridge is about to enter the third year of a five-year extension with the Trail Blazers; while he isn’t Dwight Howard, there’s no denying his rightful placement under the shrinking “superstar” umbrella that hangs over the heads of a select few. [read more…]

in essays


This from SI.com:

The Philadelphia 76ers are targeting Houston Rockets executive vice president of basketball operations Sam Hinkie in their ongoing search for a new general manager, SI.com has learned.

A leader in the league’s analytics movement who has been the Rockets’ second-in-command behind general manager Daryl Morey for the past five years, Hinkie joins a field of candidates that includes Boston assistant general manager Mike Zarren, former New Orleans general manager Jeff Bower, and former Portland assistant general manager and ESPN analyst Tom Penn.

I know Hinkie well so believe me when I say that this would be a big loss for the Rockets’ front office.  You’re not as good in the draft and at managing your cap as the Rockets have been year in and year out (post-Dawson) without smart people at the top.  Hinkie has overseen those departments as second-in-command to Daryl Morey during the tenure of this regime.

Amick mentions though that while Hinkie seems to be the frontrunner, it is unclear whether he would be unwilling to leave the Rockets.  It’s an interesting question.

With the acquisition of center Andrew Bynum, and last year’s late emergence of guard Evan Turner, the 76ers have vaulted to the top of my list for “most interesting team in the league.”  Along with Jrue Holliday, the Sixers’ is one of the league’s most enviable collections of young talent.  Because of Bynum alone, that situation is more attractive than what is here in Houston, from the standpoint of current personnel.  As we have seen, getting that blue-chip is the hard part.  If hired, Hinkie could then build around the big man using the same methods he has used in Houston helping this front office acquire the cheap young talent it has enjoyed in recent years.  With the Rockets, its still unclear when that big fish will be reeled in.

Comment on the story.

in musings

The bold projection

A couple days ago, Daryl Morey used his Twitter account to fill in the general public about a few jobs that were opening up within the Rockets organization. He ended the string of notifications with an interesting tweet that I’m sure stirred the soul of every Rockets fan who read it.

Depending on who you ask, reactions to this tweet will range from delusional to comforting. Fans will absorb it as either a legitimate gut feeling by Morey, a facetious overreaction (not likely), or, given the fact that All-Star game starters are decided by an unscientific fan voting process, a wise prediction on what the future likely holds for Houston’s new point guard, Jeremy Lin.

(I believe there’s a good—albeit unlawful—chance Lin is voted in as a starter ahead of Chris Paul, Tony Parker, Steve Nash, Russell Westbrook, Ty Lawson, or even Steph Curry, if you’d like to throw his questionable ankles into this discussion. As was once said by the wise Agent K: “A person is smart. People are dumb, panicky dangerous animals and you know it.”)

If somehow, someway, Lin does not get voted in as an All-Star starter, do any of the other players on board stand a chance of entering the league’s most elite level by next year? No, of course not. That would be ridiculous. But looking ahead, two, three years down the road, does anybody jump out as having All-Star potential? To me, the majority of youngsters on Houston’s roster (Royce White, Terrence Jones, Jeremy Lamb, Patrick Patterson, Omer Asik, Jeremy Lin, and Chandler Parsons) have very real ceilings dangling over their heads, but if placed in the right system have the skill sets to act as perfect complimentary cogs in a championship team’s rotation.

The one guy who I think has legitimate All-Star potential is Donatas Motiejunas, but I’m admittedly basing that off a few Summer League games and Chris Webber’s tirade of flattering commentary. Motiejunas is really tall, really tough, and can shoot three-pointers. Not a bad place to start, but to call him an All-Star is obviously jumping the gun.

So after seeing Morey’s tweet, how do you feel? Is there a guy on the roster who could be an All-Star soon, if ever? Or is this just a public ploy to juice up his own commodities for a blockbuster trade right before the February deadline?

Twitter: @ShakyAnkles

Join the discussion here.

in essays


The Dream Team of 3-on-3

So this was interesting, from USA Today:

Could three-on-three basketball be coming to the Olympics?

It will if FIBA, the international governing body, has its way. Secretary-general Patrick Baumann said Saturday that his group planned to propose it to be played as early as the 2016 Rio Games.

[read more…]

in essays

Follow Red94 for all new post updates