There's so much interesting stuff out there today that I figured I'd consolidate it into a link dump. A few of these links have already been included in FanShots, but I figure there should be one place for all of them.
-Amare Stoudamire as a Wizard? It's probably a fantasy, but Amare himself is doing nothing to kill those hopes. He was on the Junkies today and said he'd love to play in D.C.
"Um, I love D.C., quote, end quote," he said, eliciting oohs and ahhs and a follow-up question about how he sounded interested by this prospect. His answer?
"I love D.C, quote, end quote," he repeated. (Listen here)
"I'm going into my eighth year in the NBA, and it's time for a championship," he said moments later. Joking aside, he was asked how far away the Wiz were from contending for one of them trophy things.
"You might just be a No. 1 jersey away," he said. Well, that ought to calm down those fans and their wacky dreams.
It all seems like a publicity stunt, but it's still fun to hear that someone wants to play for us. Of course, Mike Jones has to remind us all that this has "no legs." But let's say this does have legs. Dear community, what would you give up for Amare Stoudamire?
(My best offer is Jamison, Blatche, #5 and Etan for Amare and Leandro Barbosa. I have no idea why the Suns would want Jamison, though.)
-Pre-draft musings: Stephen Curry's stock is rising. We already mentioned Draft Express' report that Larry Brown of the Bobcats loves Curry and might want to trade up for him, but there's more. The New York Post reports that Donnie Walsh of the Knicks loves Curry (surprise, surprise), and according to Chad Ford, Curry really impressed teams with his ball-handling on the first day of the pre-draft combine in Chicago.
-Michael Lee has interviews with the major prospects in contention for the Wizards here and here. The quotes are pretty well-packaged by the players and it's tough for me to take too much out of them, but I did find it interesting that DeMar Derozan is supposidely a prankster along the lines of Nick Young. Probably a stay-away.
-One guy who is rising is Jonny Flynn, at least according to Ford.
Flynn continues to generate buzz with his combination of speed and power -- even if he was the shortest guy on the floor. Every GM I spoke with now sees him as a lottery pick, with many projecting him in the Top 10.
I never liked Flynn as a prospect, to be honest. Seems like he shoots a bit too much and not particularly efficiently. There's a team out there for Flynn, but I don't think it's the Wizards. Perhaps one that needs scoring from their point guard.
I did find this quote from Lee's interview with Flynn funny.
"I have some characteristics of Chris Paul. His tenacity. He's hard as nails. He's tough guy. He fires his teammates up. He's one of the best playmakers in basketball. Really knows how to get his teammates the ball in positions where they can score. That's a sign of a great point guard. Getting into the right position where they don't have to do too much to score the basketball."
Hey, at least he's got confidence.
-Ford also comments on the winners and losers from the pre-draft measurements.
-Switching gears, Charles Barkley has apparently endorsed Eddie Jordan for the 76ers job.
"I think Eddie Jordan would be a fine choice," he said. "They're going to have a good, solid team. They're pretty much stuck with the team they've got for the next few years, because they're paying [some] guys so much money. I think he's a helluva coach. He did a good job with Washington. That team probably overachieved. Him getting to the playoffs every year, people started thinking they deserved to go farther, but they weren't that good.
I obviously disagree with Barkley's assesment of the Wizards, but I do think he fits in pretty well with the 76ers, the more I think about it. He'd probably play Brand at center and go small, but that might be what they need, because Samuel Dalembert is underachieving and doesn't make enough impact on the game. Going big also did not work this year, so maybe a chance is necessary. Hmm...
-Canis Hoopus, our Minnesota Timberwolves blog, put together a spectacular post about the moves Minnesota should make. Stop-n-Pop believes the Timberwolves and the Wiz are great trade partners and proposes a couple deals.
Coordinate trade with Washington for the #5 pick. Package one: Mike Miller, Randy Foye, and the rights to Nikola Pekovic for Etan Thomas, JaVale McGee, O. Pecherov, and the 5th pick. Less complicated option is Miller for Thomas and the rights to the #5 pick (to be completed after draft day).
I also really like the idea of working out a deal with Washington involving Miller, Foye, and Pekovic. The Wolves could even throw in Gomes if it would allow them to walk away with the 5th pick and McGee. Foye is a problematic player. He's good but he's limited and limiting. He's a 6th man on a team that bought him as a 1b starter. It's time for a new start and a backup to Gilbert Arenas seems like a good place for that to happen.
I've already posted a ton in the comments about how McGee's way too valuable to move for that package. Randy Foye doesn't do anything for me and Nikola Pekovic is a complete unknown, whereas we at least know McGee has shown potential to be a difference maker in this league. However, we both seem to be pretty open to swapping the fifth pick for Mike Miller as part of a larger package. I'd probably do Miller for Etan and #5 if Minnesota gives us the 18th pick back as well, or take Ryan Gomes on instead.
-I have no idea how reliable this is, but according to a site called Chicago Bulls Confidential, Chicago is actively shopping Kirk Hinrich (via Blogabull).
Sources close to me have told me that Kirk Hinrich will be traded sometime before next season starts. His status seems to be independent on whether the Bulls are able to bring back [Ben] Gordon.
Minnesota apparently wants Kirk as well, so any offer we make has to trump their's. That might be tough, considering the cap relief the Wolves can offer.