Basketball Insiders Week in Review 9/28

Basketball Insiders looks back at some of the articles from last week in case you missed any from the first time around.

Alan Draper profile picture
Sports Editor
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The Meaning Behind Phil Jackson’s Comments

By Jesse Blancarte

In June, the New York Knicks traded Tyson Chandler to the Dallas Mavericks, along with Raymond Felton, in exchange for Jose Calderon, Shane Larkin, Samuel Dalembert, Wayne Ellington and two second-round draft picks. Knicks team president Phil Jackson explained that the deal, in large part, was meant to address some chemistry issues on the team.

“To do that we felt (it was) important to bring in some new personnel and start with some character guys that we feel can carry this forward,” Jackson said. “Watching them play I saw guys that looked at each other like, ‘You didn’t back me up, you weren’t here when I needed help.’” “There just wasn’t the right combination or feel (where) it felt like everybody was in synch all the time.”

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NBA Training Camp Questions: Southwest Division

By Eric Pincus

Training camps open in less than a week as the NBA prepares for the 2014-15 season.

Each of the five teams in the Southwest Division have high expectations for the year ahead.

The San Antonio Spurs (62-20) are hoping to repeat as champions for the first time in franchise history.

The Spurs have 17 players under contract, but have yet to resolve the status of restricted free agent Aron Baynes.  If Baynes returns, San Antonio would have the maximum of 15 guaranteed players — but the team is reportedly looking for sign-and-trade options, while Baynes is considering playing overseas.

Rookies Bryce Cotton, JaMychal Green and Josh Davis are all hoping to get that final roster spot — each with minor guarantees.  Those cut could end up in the D-League on the Austin Toros as affiliate players of the Spurs.

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Giannis Embracing Move to Point Guard

By Alex Kennedy

Entering the 2014-15 NBA season, Milwaukee Bucks sophomore Giannis Antetokounmpo has a new head coach, a new star teammate, a new owner and even a new position. Jason Kidd was hired as the team’s coach over the summer and he wants to move Antetokounmpo from small forward to point guard.

Kidd believes the second-year player has the skill set to thrive as a floor general, and envisions him being a match-up nightmare with his 6’11 frame and 7’5 wingspan. The 19-year-old has been working out in Milwaukee with teammates and is prepared to make the transition to the one.

“I’m not going to say I was shocked by it,” Antetokounmpo told Basketball Insiders when asked about the move to point guard. “It’s something that I feel comfortable with and I’ll play wherever Coach wants me to play, especially when it’s Coach Kidd who thinks that I can play point guard. That makes me feel like, ‘I can play it. I can play point guard.’ I’m going to try my best and just listen to Coach. I’ll do whatever Coach says to do and I’ll get more comfortable.”


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NBA Training Camp Questions: Northwest Division

By Nate Duncan

With training camps just around the corner, NBA teams have key questions to answer as camp gets underway that could determine much of their outcome for this season. In a continuing series, we look at the training camp questions for the Northwest Division.


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Did Bledsoe Set The Market?

By Steve Kyler

As the players drafted in 2011 close in on their own deadlines to reach early contract extensions of their rookie scale deals, many around the league watched how the Eric Bledsoe restricted free agency drama played out in Phoenix closely. Bledsoe’s new five year, fully-guaranteed $70 million deal may set the bar for what some other players are looking for especially when you factor in Bledsoe’s injury history and production.

Here are the players eligible for extensions and where some of them may be headed:

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NBA Training Camp Questions: Central Division

By Joel Brigham

Training camps start within the week for all NBA teams, which means there will finally be real basketball to digest after a long summer of rumors, anonymous sources and soap opera drama. The following are some questions that each team in the Central Division may face over the course of the preseason. The answers to these, many of which will be provided during October’s slate of warm-up games, should tell us a lot about what sorts of teams these organizations will actually be by the time the regular season finally rolls around.


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Deeper Look at 2011 Draft Class

By Yannis Koutroupis

In the NBA AM today, Steve Kyler went over the extension possibilities for the members of the 2011 NBA Draft Class who are still on their rookie contracts. They have until October 31 to try to negotiate an extension with their respective teams, otherwise they will become restricted free agents, assuming a qualifying offer is made.

They say it takes three years to truly grade and evaluate a draft class, but there were a couple of first round picks in the 2011 draft that didn’t even get that long before they were let out of their rookie deals. In today’s NBA PM, we take a look at those who didn’t develop as expected, and as a result are either out of the NBA or have their NBA careers hanging by a thread.

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Setting Kemba Walker’s Market Value

By Lang Greene

The deadline to sign members of the 2011 draft class to early contract extensions is October 31. The top overall pick of the draft, All-Star guard Kyrie Irving, has already received a five-year $90 million extension from the Cleveland Cavaliers this past summer.

On Thursday, Basketball Insiders publisher Steve Kyler took an in-depth look at the members of the class eligible for an extension. Basketball Insiders managing editor Yannis Koutroupis followed up with a look at members of the class who are at a career crossroads.

One of the members of the class whose market value has likely increased is Charlotte Hornets point guard Kemba Walker who was selected with the ninth overall pick in 2011. Walker’s leverage will undoubtedly be helped by Charlotte’s recent ascent in the standings and the fact guard Eric Bledsoe was recently able to secure a five-year, $70 million deal from Phoenix.

But will the Charlotte Hornets decide to do with the emerging Walker?

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Preseason Top-100 Fantasy Basketball Rankings

By Tommy Beer

With NBA training camps set to open, it’s time to start our vigorous preparation for the 2014-15 fantasy hoops season.

Thus, listed below is a preliminary preview of the official Top-150 overall rankings we’ll release next month.

As always, it is important to issue this disclaimer: These rankings are based on nine-category fantasy scoring leagues that account for points, assists, rebounds, steals, blocks, three-pointers made, turnovers, field goal percentage and free throw percentage. The rankings for five-category leagues would look far different, especially for particular players with major flaws in categories such as free-throw shooting or turnovers.

Beneath the rankings, I have listed a handful of players that just missed the cut. I have also included a few random stats and other interesting tidbits to help explain the thinking behind a handful of these selections.

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Alan is an experienced writer of online betting and casino guides. He is one of the main editors of Basketballinsiders.

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