The Future of Hair – Brad Doolittle continues his quest to rank the top 10 players at each position next season for ESPN Insider, and yesterday he came to the very tricky 3 spot. The Hair–that’s what I’m calling Chandler Parsons now just to see if it sticks–snuck in at number 10 with a WARP (wins above replacement player) of 4.8. Doolittle writes:
If there was a way to subjectively tweak WARP to give Parsons extra credit for his role in recruiting Dwight Howard to Houston, he’d rank higher. As it is, I think ATH is underrating Parsons, both for what he’s done and what he should be able to do playing off Howard and James Harden. The system sees a little regression in his 3-point percentage and, thus, his true shooting percentage, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see those figures continue on an upwards arc.
Some of the guys ranked ahead of Parsons include Paul Pierce, Kyle Korver and Danny Granger, all of whom are a decent bet to slide a bit. So that’s the good news. But there are a few flies in the ointment here for Chandler. First off, Doolittle is pushing LeBron and Carmelo to the PF rankings because that is the position at which they play the most minutes. Secondly, to put the Hair’s WARP into perspective, Durant came in first by a mile at 18.3. Third, he’s considerably behind fellow rising stars Kawhi Leonard (8.0) and Paul George (6.8).
Parsons might need a trampoline to make the leap from quality starter to star. More on The Hair after the break.
Draymond Green: Public Enemy – I hope you recognize the budding rivalry between Houston and Golden State. In an interview with the Detroit Free Press, Draymond Green sure does:
Rival? Houston, after Green was tossed from a February game with the Rockets. He put a hard foul on Patrick Beverley to prevent Houston from setting a single-game three-pointer record, and jawing and the ejection ensued.
“It is what it is now,” Green, a Saginaw native and former Michigan State All-America forward who is entering his second season with the Golden State Warriors, said Saturday after some pickup basketball at Lansing Everett High. “They hate me. I dislike them.”
That game spawned one of the most crass NBA tweets of the year from Andrew Bogust, and may have kicked off the defining Western Conference rivalry of the next decade. Here’s hoping, because for reasons that defy rational explanation, I really enjoy rooting against Stephen Curry.
The Royce Young Show – The editor of the Daily Thunder blog was all over ESPN.com yesterday talking about Houston Rockets. In the 5-on-5 about small forwards, he listed The Hair as Most Underrated:
He might be the best value in the league (making $926,500 this season), but with numbers of 15.5 points, 5.3 rebounds, 3.5 assists, a solid PER of 15.33 and shooting percentage splits of 49-39-73, Parsons is quietly a top-10 small forward. Maybe top five if you want to get bold about things.
And then on TrueHoop TV, Young and Henry Abbott continue the reflection on and dissection of the Harden Trade.
The most illuminating thing in this interview might be what Abbott says around the 1:30 mark:
I believe in my heart of hearts based on great sources that James Harden’s big goal wasn’t a little more money. I mean yeah, he wanted that, but he wanted to be a superstar, which he has proven that he is completely worthy of being. He wanted to be the man on a team, and the Thunder couldn’t offer that.
Throughout last season, at least until his 46 point explosion against OKC, it was hard not to wonder if Harden wasn’t secretly pining to be back with his bros in Oklahoma, dominating the West again on the way to the Finals. As many times as he said he was happy to be in Houston, the voice in the back of my head would always say, “He’s just saying the right things. He wishes he was on a contender with less pressure.
He doesn’t really love you.” Between Dwight’s arrival and the certainty in Abbott’s voice, I think that voice in my head is finally gone.
Of Arts and Sciences – Jason Gallagher at Ballerball.com as co-created a musical about the NBA lockout. It’s called, The Lockout: A Musical. Why should you care, Rockets fan? Because Jason tells me one of the characters is based on Daryl Morey, and this song is basically the Sabermetric Anthem. Dork Elvis even gave it his endorsement:
Also, as a fan of both the NBA & theatre — I am intrigued by Lockout: A Musical http://t.co/dIAIwOrkPa
— Daryl Morey (@dmorey) August 5, 2013
Could they play this in Toyota Center after Houston wins a championship? Take it away, KG.
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