Saturday, July 07, 2007

Summer League Shockers

I'm taking a little break from studying for the California bar exam, and here is what I discovered from the first two days of the Vegas summer league:

1. Marco Belinelli is sick! The Warriors new first round pick went for 37 bones on 14-of-20 shooting in his debut. I know that summer league is a bad proxy (Skita, anyone?) for NBA success and that Belinelli joins the ranks of Keith Bogans and Ike Diogu as the all-time top single game scorers in Vegas league history, but still, 37 is 37. Plus, he looks like a perfect fit in that offense and if I remember correctly, this is how he played against Team USA in that exhibition. (Wasn't that in Vegas as well? Maybe if the Sonics move there, they should trade for this dude.) I think he's for real and will pour in about 150 threes next year. I can't wait to take him in the 11th round of my fantasy draft.

2. Memphis is going to be pretty solid. Gasol and Mike Miller are legit, Rudy Gay is showing his promise (at the expense of Yi's face), and Mike Conley appears to be the real deal. He looks a lot like Chris Paul in the way he controls tempo and plays with both hands. The Grizzlies still need help on the frontline - which is probably why they are about to slap an offer sheet in Anderson Varejao's mailbox - but I really think they can get back to .500 next year and build for the future.

3. The Blazers are stoked. This might seem like an odd opinion considering Oden's rough first game and the fact that Rudy Fernandez is considering accepting an offer in Barcelona that will keep him abroad for years, but I think yesterday was a positive day for Rip City. That is because LaMarcus Aldridge was treating the Celtics summer league team like a bunch of kids. He went for 26 and 11 on a dizzying array of post moves, turnarounds (Hakeem would be proud), and 20-foot jumpers. He also showed no signs of that Wolf-Pakistan disease or whatever it was called. Portland knows Oden will be a beast and anchor the D for years and they know they will have the perimeter talent eventually, but I think they were really crossing their fingers with Aldridge. If he's healthy and continues to develop, he could be a dominant power forward in the NBA. And that could be the difference between contender and dynasty. And yes, I'm one step closer to being named the president of the LaMarcus Aldridge Fan Club. So be it.

4. Nice, job, Billy King! King's latest first round picks - Thaddeus Young and Jason Smith - were abysmal in their summer league debuts. And it wasn't Greg Oden "a bit out of sorts, needs to find the range" abysmal, it was "wow, that guy looks like he's never played basketball" abysmal. King is the absolute, well, king of GM ineptitude.

5. A Spurs and Cavs game is still boring. 67 to 53. In a 40-minute game. Are you serious?


jsuns1 said...

On Suns, could the suns be selling the first round pick for money for hill, or another trade to come? I agree though, it's tough seeing the Suns pass on the chance to select a player from a great draft on their first pick. I sure was hoping they'd get Belinelli, knew if we couldn't get a pick sooner than 24 though, we wouldn't. Should be a fun year to watch some other teams play! Do you think the Suns are done with trades before the season starts?

Anonymous said...

no comments on the ref scandal?