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Smack / Jul 13, 2009 / 12:02 am

Harden, Thabeet face off in Vegas; D-Wade gets max offer from Miami

James Harden (photo. Orlando Sentinel)

James Harden (photo. Orlando Sentinel)

Classic example of the difference between the NBA summer league and the real-life NBA: Yesterday’s matchup pitting #2 pick Hasheem Thabeet against #3 pick James Harden drew a good-sized crowd at the Thomas & Mack Center in Vegas, and later headlined NBA TV’s “Gametime” highlight show. But wait until the regular season, whenever the Grizzlies and Thunder play each other for the first time. Half-empty gym, and it probably won’t even make the nightly highlight shows unless it happens to be A.I.‘s first game with Memphis or Kevin Durant scores 50 … Thabeet (9 pts, 2 rebs) was rocking a mohawk and still doing the t-shirt under the jersey thing while he’s still got a few games left before having to dress like an NBA player. Harden (4 pts, 3 asts) only made one field goal, a driving dunk in traffic where he showed more ups than a lot of people thought he had … If they ever make The James Harden Story, are we absolutely sure Delroy Lindo is too old to play the lead character? … Marcus Williams (the UConn version) was back on the court, handing out 17 assists for Memphis with just one turnover. If he’s got his head on straight and he’s in shape, Williams could actually be a good pickup for the Grizzlies. Their PG situation is still shaky with Mike Conley and Mr. Adriana Lima … Classic example of summer league nepotism: OKC has Tony Durant on its roster. That would be Kevin’s brother, a 6-7 forward out of Towson University who otherwise wouldn’t be sniffing the NBA right now … Shaun Livingston has looked alright with the Thunder in the last week, although he’s being held out of back-to-back games. Supposedly he’s 90-95 percent healthy, but is still trying to get his quickness and explosiveness back, which honestly may never happen. It’s clear by now Livingston won’t become that superstar Magic Johnson-like PG scouts envisioned in high school, but how good do you think he can be? What is Shaun’s new ceiling: NBA starter, above-average backup, take-him-or-leave-him rotation guy, or will he forever be on the fringe of being in or out of the League? … Brandon Jennings had 23 points, eight dimes and five steals against Cleveland … George Hill scored 25 points (11-11 FT) to lead San Antonio over the Hornets, while DeJuan Blair added 13 points and 10 boards. Marcus Thornton had 22 points, six boards and two steals for the Hornets, and Darren Collison had 19 and six dimes … Remember during the ’06 Finals when the Heat used Earl Barron to simulate Dirk Nowitzki in practice, and D-Wade and Shaq and those guys swore up and down Barron was really lighting them up? Ever since then we’ve kept Barron on the radar, but he never panned out. Now he’s on the Hornets’ summer team; he could possibly make the roster, especially if they trade Tyson Chandler before the season … Speaking of next-big-thing types, Julian Wright is overdue for his breakout season. He was good yesterday — 15 points, seven boards, two steals and three blocks — but the fact that he’s even still playing summer league shows he’s not progressing enough … Joey Dorsey (the Dwight Howard of the Vegas Summer League) posted eight points, 16 boards and four blocks in Houston’s win over Minnesota. We don’t envy whoever is coaching the Wolves. (Come to think of it, who is coaching them? The franchise doesn’t have a head coach yet, and presumably dumped all of Kevin McHale‘s assistants.) Getting Jonny Flynn (11 pts, 7 asts, 7 turnovers) and Wayne Ellington (4 pts, 2-12 FG) on track is one thing, then they’ve also got to work Corey Brewer (14 pts) back into the fold, and since the Bobcats don’t have a summer team, Gerald Henderson is being loaned out to the Wolves. Of course Charlotte wants Henderson to get in as much work as possible, but why would Minnesota play Henderson at the expense of developing their own guys? … Chase Budinger looks like a 6-foot-7 Child of the Corn. How he remained so pale growing up in San Diego and playing beach volleyball every day, we don’t know … The Boston Globe says the Celtics will cut back Paul Pierce‘s minutes next season — along with Kevin Garnett, Ray Allen and Rasheed Wallace, we’d presume — to keep him fresh for the postseason. Pierce, 31, did appear exhausted at points during that grueling seven-game series with Chicago, and told the newspaper he was totally fine with not playing as much in the regular season. And that’s the kind of perspective a championship can buy. Let the C’s try to cut Pierce’s minutes three years ago and see what happens … Sunday at midnight was the first time teams could offer contract extensions, and Pat Riley reportedly texted D-Wade around 12:01 a.m with a max offer that would keep Wade in Miami through 2014. But, as he’s said all offseason, Wade is going to wait. “It’s no rush,” Wade told the Miami Herald. “We all know that.” … Wade and Alonzo Mourning put on the annual Zo’s Summer Groove event this past weekend, with yesterday’s charity game featuring Chris Paul, ‘Melo, Caron Butler, Roger Mason, Mike Beasley, Darius Miles, Udonis Haslem, Mario Chalmers, Rasual Butler, Daequan Cook, Dorell Wright and Tim Hardaway. LeBron was supposed to play, but he had other committments in, of all places, Idaho. Apparently he’s about to buy the entire state … We’re out like Earl Barron …

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  • baron von faulk

    Good to see the young Spurs goin’ to work y’all. Thrill Hill, baby!

  • http://yahoo.com slygerogg

    good cuz if someone dunked on Lebron we would have to destroy the tapes of the charity game

  • sh!tfaced

    lebron does live in his own private idaho

  • chester

    me first!bwahaha

  • Martin McFly

    Earl Barron simulating Dirk!?!!!ROTFL!!!

  • doc

    Miami was popping this weekend.

  • frustrated LBJ fan

    seriously Lebron and whoever’s handling Lebron’s PR is just messing up big time.

    after the no-shaking hands in ECF, missing tape, and even the Ariza recruitment pitch are all epic failures. I mean he’s getting hate like he raped someone.

    That said the guy deserves the rough time now. He needs an ego check. Love his game but not the hype. He should be in Idaho practicing his free throws and developing a post up game.

  • ponky_alolor

    @5, I’m sure that Earl Barron simulating Dirk statement wasn’t that hard to understand for you to roll over laughing.

  • quest???

    marcus williams is an mvp candidate in the BSN (The professional basketball league of puerto rico) he led the league in assits.

  • http://dimemag.com Big Freeze

    The Shaun Livingston story is kinda sad. Dude looked like he was morphing into a sick PG, but that disgusting knee injury changed everything. I hope he can play in the NBA again and be productive on some level, but I don’t see him being a starter ever again.

  • Flying_Aussie_Dutchman

    So Thabeet definately can’t wear the shirt under the jersey? If not a shirt, how about one of those body suit warmer things?

    I think Marcus Williams could make it on a good team. I still remember when Chris Taft was meant to be a monster in the L

  • alf (from melmak)

    Shaun Livingston is another one of those “what if” players. The injury he sustained looked scary on television. But as Bill Simmons would say, that is par for the course for the Clippers. The other LA team is cursed.

    On another news, the Pistons has said to have rejected the Boozer for Prince trade. Argh!

    I am giving Dumars all my meal allowance for the remainder of the month if he would just cooperate and take Boozer and AK and give the Jazz Prince and Rip.

  • John

    When I look to Shaun Livingstone, the first thing that come to my mind is Danny Manning.

  • alf (from melmak)

    John, Danny Manning was also drafted by the Clippers. They are cursed! Blake Griffin be warned.

  • Josh Tha roc

    danny was a more than serviceable player after his injuries. First thought is that saving baseline alley oop to….surely not amare….in his latter yes at phx.

  • http://www.nba.com smoove chips

    Mr Adriana Lima..haha good one

    now if only the C’s can find some throat lozenges for pierce.dude’s been sounding like the cookie monster for the longest time.

  • haslem

    I remember that Earl Baron statement from 06 and figured he would get major minutes with the heat in 07. That didnt happen. How can he go from lighting up Wade and Shaq in practice in the finals to struggling to make a roster?
    Maybe they just said it to mess with Dirks head? Or maybe hes got Von Wafer syndrome (lights and crowds is his kryptonite)

  • haslem

    @ John
    Livingstons gonna have to earn the Danny Manning lable right now he is closer Len Bias.
    (not even trying to make a messed up joke here) in that hes got people wondering what if he hadn’t been injured what would have been. But Danny Manning acctually did something in the L, so if Livingston becomes a Danny Manning player while that wont be what everyone expected when he entered the L, given the recent turn of events that wont be a bad career.

  • http://uoregon.edu sans

    Shaun’s ceiling is as a starter, and he has a long time to go to get there.

    Did anyone see George Hill’s dunk? Incredible for the boringest name in the L.

  • Flying_Aussie_Dutchman

    boringest name? – Joe Smith?

  • http://www.saltytexan.com rangerjohn (cap and tax LMAO oops)

    nobody else had an issue with “Pat Riley reportedly texted D-Wade around 12:01 a.m with a max offer”? i mean wade is your cash cow, get off your ass and go see him or AT LEAST call him so he can hear your voice! hell as far as we know pat’s assistant sent that text to wade. sometimes technology gets in the way im telling you.

  • Ashlov

    Looks like Iverson is the Heat’s to lose:

    http://sports.espn.go.com/nba/news/story?id=4323159

  • dk

    Everyone keeps trying to turn the D Wade and Miami situation into a negative, ole fucking crab ass bitches. Get over it. Wade is going no where. He either signs now or signs next year. NO BIG DEAL.

  • dk

    @21 Yeah, its fucking reeeal horrible to get a text at midnight asking you to take a 100 mil…. I hate that shit… Fucking anoying bastards….

  • http://www.saltytexan.com rangerjohn (cap and tax LMAO oops)

    dk your an idiot! so how about if your boss (that is if you have a job, wait are you old enough to work?) was doing everything he could to keep you working for him and he sent you a text message offering you a raise. i know i would be pissed at the fact that my boss doesnt have the balls or the desire to talk face to face on something so important. 100 mil is not something you send a text about that is something a GOOD business man talks about in person or AT LEAST over the phone. i mean that is like your girlfriend sending you a text saying she is pregnant. wait im sorry, that would be like YOUR boyfriend sending you a text saying he has some sexually transmitted disease.

  • Kobeef

    Is anyone else surprised that Thabeet’s team destroyed a team with Westbrook, Harden and Weaver in his debut?

    Thabeet actually had 9 points, two board and a block at the half. It may not have been all thabeet’s fault but the Thunder could not get anything in the basket last night. I was convinced Thabeet was a project but he may be closer than I thought.

  • dk

    @25 No I dont have a boss. I am the boss. Get over it, obviously they have a good relationship to text information like that. In addition a call may have woke him, which is rude, idiot.

  • dk

    I learned at 13 that your an idiot if you work for someone in most circumstances. By 18 I had my own bussiness. Its been going strong for 14 years. I dont wait for Fridays, upgrade ur life homie..

  • http://www.saltytexan.com rangerjohn (cap and tax LMAO oops)

    dk, try again smart guy. so what your saying is that 99% of the entire population of this country are idiots because they are not self employed? including all of tehse NBA players? your the idiot. nobody cares that you say you have been working for yourself, dealing drugs doesnt count. go get a legit job that will actually pay you enough to move into a nice house and not just 24″ rims on your 1995 cutlas supreme.

    and now i am off to the office where i am the boss, where i cut the checks and where we have already sold about 2 million this year (slow year since new construction died off)

    oh and if you are asleep on the 1st moment your boss can contact you and offer you a contract then your relationship is not good enough to be getting texts

  • Kobeef

    Looking through the stats from summer league and noticed Joe Alexander is now 5-25 in two summer league games.

    It is becoming clear why we didn’t see much of him in the NBA last year.

  • dk

    Yes I am saying that. I also added under special circumstances. I havent had a 95 since 98. Have fun at work loser.

  • doc

    @kobeef-Thabeet is ALREADY a precense down low and it aint going nowhere.Im with dk crazy ass in that I wouldnt give a fuck either way if Im Wade.And Pat Riley wasnt for going to Wade house all late when he already know he aint signing shit until next year.It was just a text to show u know its here so dont tear your ACL or nothing like that kind of message.But I enjoy u 2 going at it so keep on.Ranger u know u wanna put some rims on something.We see u watching.

  • Kudabeen

    Wade is being real casual. Say if he re-injuries his shoulder or knee or anything more severe…wouldn’t that take away from your value as a guy that is already 26-27 years old?

    Why not play for Miami? Where will it be better? I guess these guys really think they have it all lined up for them. He goes to NYC or where ever, then what? They are going to have better chances to win a Chip? Take your Max deal dude…Don’t stroke the ego. I have to believe Pat Riley is trying to win down there.

  • Rangerjohn

    Lol doc, already got my 20″ rims on my 2008 f-250 king ranch 4×4 diesel.

  • http://www.f-the-refs.net Chicagorilla

    They should have asked Jordan Crawford to replace Lebron for the Zo’s summer groove game. And had him dunk over a Lerbon Cut out during half time. Then have the Phx Suns Gorilla beat up the camera man and destroy the tape.

  • QQ

    Here we go again, DK on the boards purposely trying to RAPE these boards. Dude, please STFU about your boring life. Seriously, no one cares about anything you do. Keep it about basketball you identity stealing maggot.