When news came out that Jeff Van Gundy would only consider coming back to coach only if he is given the role of President AND the Head Coach, it got me thinking. Entering the season, the Clippers (Doc Rivers), Pistons (Stan Van Gundy), Timberwolves (RIP Flip), and Hawks (Mike Budenholzer) had that situation with some like Jason Kidd angling for that role. It is no coincidence that many of these are recent hires, often as a final bargaining chip to entice a coach to take the opportunity.
Hi! I’ve been pleasantly surprised by the overall lack of complaints about Kobe being a starter in this year’s All Star Game. There will always be some writers/tweeters that speak out when the voters simply vote based on who they want to see rather than voting for the best players, which is ultimately the right of the fans (and of people to complain about, for that matter).
Power Rankings for the Week of January 18th
DISCLAIMER: This is one day late. I had a much more elaborate, but in hindsight completely impractical idea for this. I have kept the records as of Sunday night to maintain uniformity. I apologize, and will try to do better – this is not my best but I’ve committed to doing this weekly and will honor my commitment. Thank you, as always.
One of my favorite things about sports is pondering the what-if’s or other hypotheticals in sports because often little things can end up having ramifications for years to come involving many teams at the same time.
“I’m not sure it’s just the NBA,” Sarver said, when reached by The Republic via phone, regarding personality clashing and dysfunction within locker rooms. “My whole view of the millennial culture is that they have a tough time dealing with some eat backs, and Markieff Morris is the perfect example. He had a setback with his brother in the offseason, and he can’t seem to recover from it.”
No, Robert Sarver, it’s not the millennial culture, it’s the fact that players are holding their management accountable for their words just as management holds players accountable for theirs. Markieff didn’t have a “setback”, he was betrayed by his own organization that he trusted with a below-market deal with the implicit agreement that the Morris brothers would stay together. Here’s Markieff to the USA Today:
I don’t trust them anymore,” he said following Wednesday’s practice session. “It happens too many times. Two, three times.
“They give promises, OK. It’s hard. But at the same time, I wish them all the best. They were great to me the past five years. I’m always going to have a good memory about Phoenix fans and the city. I just hit that point of my career that it’s better for me and my family to move on.”
That was a lie, that was Goran Dragic.
Nobody is questioning the Suns approach to try to get LaMarcus Aldridge, if somebody like him becomes available you do what you can to try to get him to join your organization. To the Suns credit, LaMarcus Aldridge was impressed enough to seriously consider them – considering the Suns weren’t even a distant rumor for him, that’s an achievement. But, to discredit the human element entirely is a mistake that some GM’s are just to slow to react to. The right time to trade Markieff was right after it was clear that LaMarcus wasn’t coming, and if the Suns had considered Markieff as a person, they would’ve known that. How cool was Goran Dragic going to be with losing playmaking to Eric Bledsoe? Then after that, you bring in Isaiah Thomas, jeopardizing not only Goran Dragic but Eric Bledsoe. All of these moves that were made were good moves in a vacuum, but the post-move ramifications don’t occur in that same vacuum and should be dealt with accordingly.
Moving forward, the Suns shouldn’t panic – I don’t think Hornacek is the problem. What they need to do is trade Markieff, and do it now. I don’t blame Markieff for being upset, but at this point he is a complete distraction and should be away from the team. Secondly, don’t say dumb things about Millennials and have a “all hands on deck” type meeting to clear the air in the locker room and other layers of the organization and move forward. This team still has talent, they have drafted decently well, and have a good coach. While it will take time to regain the trust they had with free agents (like LMA), all they can do now is stabilize the organization and try to regain the trust of their players.
Here are this week’s rankings, where I decided to be a sarcastic dick to every team.
I love podcasts, they are what occupy me during my commutes, on my elliptical, while I’m playing video games (I put 2k on mute), and generally I am listening to podcasts during any “dead” period in my day. I am subscribed to 77(!!!) of them, and I specifically wanted to thank those that help me understand the NBA and entertain me along the way – in no particular order, with the exception of the first:
[Apologies if I mistakingly left any podcast that I listen to out]