Thursday, 27 June 2013

The 10-man rotation, starring what Eddy Curry-to-the-Knicks hath wrought

A look around the league and the Web that covers it. It's also important to note that the rotation order and starting nods aren't always listed in order of importance. That's for you, dear reader, to figure out.

C: @sephgat. Nearly eight years after the Chicago Bulls traded Eddy Curry, Antonio Davis and and a 2007 first-round pick to the New York Knicks for Jermaine Jackson, Mike Sweetney, Tim Thomas, first-rounders in 2006 and 2007, and second-rounders in 2007 and 2009, @sephgat has traced the travels of those draft picks and subsequent dealings to create the handy flow chart you see before you. Every path you travel gets worse and worse for Knicks fans, which just feels so appropriate as we prepare for the annual NBA draft.

PF: HoopsAnalyst and DraftExpress. As we draw nearer to the kickoff of Thursday's 2013 NBA Draft, compare the top prospect lists of Ed Weiland and Jonathan Givony, two of the best of the best when it comes to projecting pro talent.

SF: Slate. Ten years after the Detroit Pistons' infamous selection of Darko Milicic before Carmelo Anthony, Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade, Jack Hamilton revisits the "magical thinking and racism" that led to one of the biggest draft errors in NBA history.

SG: Fear the Sword. Why should the Cleveland Cavaliers take Nerlens Noel with the No. 1 overall pick? Because three of the final four teams in this year's NBA Playoffs had shot-deterring, ground-covering, paint-patrolling, rim-protecting big men at the heart of their defenses, and in today's NBA, when you get a chance to take one of those guys, you grab it with both hands. (Dean Oliver and Peter Newmann of ESPN Stats and Information have more on Noel's defensive potential according to the advanced stats he piled up in his abbreviated freshman year at Kentucky.)

PG: Vantage Sports. A deep-dive on passing stats/film study that goes beyond mere assist numbers takes a look at a trio of point guards — likely lottery picks Michigan's Trey Burke and Syracuse's Michael Carter-Williams, plus possible second-round selection Phil Pressey of Missouri — to determine who is the best "true facilitator" in this year's draft.

6th: The Basketball Jones. Trey Kerby analyzes the top 60 NBA draft prospects based solely on whether or not their names sound NBA-y. Make sure to make this an integral part of your draft-grading process.

7th: GrizzGrind. Want to learn about the background of Dave Joerger, the longtime minor-league coach and lead assistant that the Memphis Grizzlies just promoted to fill their head coaching vacancy and replace Lionel Hollins? Matthew Prestons' got an extensive (and irreverent) recap of the path Joerger took to a top NBA job.

8th: Mark Monteith weighs in from the press conference reintroducing Larry Bird as the Indiana Pacers' president of basketball operations, which included a frank assessment of the Eastern Conference finalists' Achilles heel and primary priority this offseason: “The bench didn't step up and play the way we thought it would. Somehow we have to upgrade it. And we don't have a lot of money to spend.”

9th: 48 Minutes of Hell. Kelly's already offered an overview of the primary offseason questions and issues facing the San Antonio Spurs, but if you want a more in-depth dive into what's next for Pop and company, Matthew Tynan's got just what you're looking for.

10th: Salt City Hoops. Dan Clayton offers a similarly detailed primer on the free-agent questions, concerns and decisions ahead of the Utah Jazz, headlined by the futures of frontcourt stars Al Jefferson and Paul Millsap.

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