22nd June 10:57
Brent Barry on Ridnour
Quoth Brent Barry on Ridnour:
"He's already the best point guard on our team," Barry said. "Just wait,
Meanwhile, from ESPN Insider on Reece Gaines (#15 pick by Magic)
Have the Magic struck out on yet another first-round pick? Those are the
whispers in Orlando after a disappointing summer and preseason for Reece
Gaines. According to sources with the team, coach Doc Rivers has become
increasingly convinced that Gaines doesn't have the court vision or
leadership skills necessary to be the team's point guard -- at least not
this year anyway. Of course, Gaines has the size to play two guard, but
his value is diminished if that becomes his only position.
Rivers, like other coaches who are former point guards, always gives his
point guards a rough time. But this one will be tough to swallow. The team
needs some size at the point. Right now, its other two point guards are
Tyronn Lue (6-0) and Shammond Williams (6-1). Neither is starting quality.
If the early read on Gaines is correct (remember that it sometimes takes
point guards a little longer), it will be the fourth straight first-round
pick for the Magic to go belly up. The Magic have struggled with the draft
since taking Mike Miller No. 5 in 2000. Their 2001 selections -- Steven
Hunter and Jeryl Sasser -- have both been disappointing. In fact, Sasser
(who was taken ahead of Jamaal Tinsley and Tony Parker) is on the verge of
being cut by the team, despite a guaranteed contract this year. Last
year's first-rounder, Ryan Humphrey, has also been disappointing and was
traded to Memphis just before the trade deadline.
And on Marcus Banks (#13 pick Boston):
Speaking of regrets, are the Celtics having second thoughts about rookie
Marcus Banks after a pretty miserable preseason. No one gives up on
rookies that fast. But everyone, including Banks, appears to be a little
"I would say there's one thing that I would like Marcus to do and that's
relax," Danny Ainge, director of basketball operations, told the Boston
Globe. "I think Marcus is going to be fine and I am just as excited now
as I was when we drafted him. He does things you can't teach. He beats
his man off the dribble and gets into the paint. His penetration and
explosiveness are things you can't teach."
Added coach Jim O'Brien: "He is where he is. I didn't have a pace for
him . . . He'll get there. He's a smart kid. He's hungry. He's a good
listener. He wants to get better. The coaches spend extra time in the
video room with him, explaining his mistakes. If you try to force any
number of things down somebody's throat, it not a good learning
experience. It's just a gradual process."
I haven't seen anything on TJ Ford (#8 pick) or Kirk Hinrich (#7 pick)
yet. Maybe if I get bored, I'll do an ****ysis of the rookie PG's based
on the pre-season. Don't hold your breath.
27th June 07:58
Brent Barry on Ridnour
speaking of rookie PG preseasons.....
extracts from http://www.nba.com/preview2003/rookies_031016.html
Leandrinho Barbosa, G, Phoenix Suns (No. 28)
Stats: 4 GP, 7.3 ppg, 2.3 apg, 1.00 spg
Breakdown: Speedy Brazilian guard has shown that he can be a solid
second-string point for Phoenix.
Steve Blake, G, Washington Wizards (No. 38)
Stats: 4 GP, 5.3 ppg, 1.5 rpg, 5.0 apg, 1.5 spg
Breakdown: Defensive ball-hawk is showing early signs that he could be
a solid backup for Gilbert Arenas.
Boris Diaw, G-F, Atlanta Hawks (No. 21)
Stats: 3 GP, 8.3 ppg, 4.3 rpg, 3.3 apg, 1.00 spg
Breakdown: All-around athleticism should allow this do-everything
swingman to give the Hawks valuable minutes off the bench.
T.J. Ford, G, Milwaukee Bucks (No. 8)
Stats: 4 GP, 8.3 ppg, 5.0 rpg, 5.5 apg, 1.25 spg
Breakdown: As predicted, he's struggling with his shot (10-for-30
FGs). Also as predicted, he has speed and penetration skills to burn.
Willie Green, G, Philadelphia 76ers (No. 41)
Stats: 4 GP, 12.0 ppg, 1.8 rpg, 5-for-8 3P
Breakdown: This athletic second-rounder is looking like one of the
steals of the draft. 6-4 shooting guard will put pressure on the
Sixers in***bent reserves for minutes off the pine.
LeBron James, G, Cleveland Cavaliers (No. 1)
Stats: 3 GP, 8.0 ppg, 4.0 rpg, 4.3 apg, 1.33 spg, 1.33 bpg
Breakdown: Cavs are wisely not putting too much pressure on James to
play like a star, so his stats aren't through the roof. But there have
been times when his passing and court vision have left spectators
shaking their heads.
Zoran Planinic, G, New Jersey Nets (No. 22)
Stats: 3 GP, 8.3 ppg, 3.0 rpg, 2.3 apg, 2.33 spg
Breakdown: With Zoran's steady play at the point this preseason, the
Nets feel confident that they have their backup point guard of the
present and future.
Dwyane Wade, G, Miami Heat (No. 5)
Stats: 3 GP, 13.3 ppg, 4.3 rpg, 2.0 apg, 2.33 spg, 1.33 bpg
Breakdown: Despite struggling with a sprained ankle, Wade's skill, raw
talent and passion for the game has Heat coach Pat Riley ecstatic
about his prospects for the coming season.
*Hinrich, Banks, Ridnour, Gaines, & Bell not mentioned in the article