Some picks vanish in their first year because they were never that talented to begin with. Others because their coaches are the basketball equivalent of Dr. Doom, burying them in pursuit of their master plan. Some just don’t “get it” yet.
And then there’s Tyler Hansbrough.
One of the most celebrated players in college history entered the league with the Indiana Pacers, a development most simply nodded at, as if to say “Tall white player with college assets? Of course Indiana drafted him.” Many expected him to fail at the pro level. But when he managed to get past injuries and get on the floor, he showed some promise. He really looked like the kind of guy you wanted on the floor.
But Hansbrough has been hit with an inner ear infection which has kept him out of all but 29 games. In some ways, it seem like bad luck. A freak ailment that has submarined his first pro season seems like bad luck. But when compared to any long-term knee injury, shoulder-injury or foot injury, it’s at least something that can be moved on from permanently, once healthy.
Still, via the Indy Star, we get more unfortunate news for Hansbrough. Coach Jim O’Brien told reporters he doesn’t expect Hansbrough back this season. Might be for the best. Get him healthy as possible, keep developing him in the locker room, and start over next season when the team might actually be able to be relevant again.
Is the Derrick Rose/Jimmy Butler relationship nothing but puppy dogs and rainbows? No. There will be sparks between two intense competitors.
Have those sparks started a fire Bulls fans should be concerned about? A report on Wednesday said the core problem was Butler doesn’t respect Rose’s work ethic, which provided some kindling for that spark to catch.
However, as you would expect, Butler said this was all much ado about nothing, that he and Rose are all good. Via K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune:
Spin this however you wish: Their relationship is fine and someone in the media is making this up; or their relationship has been rough, and this is all just leaking out now.
This is a Bulls team in a bit of a transition as Rose declines some and Butler has grown into a top-flight player. Clearly that dynamic has some people around the team — likely the people in one of one of the players’ camps doesn’t like the power struggle or where it leaves his buddy — talking out of school to the press.
But as Butler noted, winning cures all ills. If Chicago can get off to a fast start, nobody will be asking chemistry questions.
For now, however, tounges are wagging.
The NBA is still investigating and can take its own action. In theory people involved in the incident could decide to file a civil lawsuit (although Fisher said he would not).
However, Memphis’ Matt Barnes is not going to face any criminal charges for an altercation he instigated with Knicks’ head coach Derek Fisher at the home of Barnes’ estranged wife in Los Angeles, according to police, who talked to TMZ.
Matt Barnes will NOT be charged with a crime for allegedly attacking Derek Fisher over the weekend … the Redondo Beach Police Department tells TMZ Sports.
Cops tell us they did respond to an incident and a police report was filed regarding the altercation — but officers say the case “was reviewed and there is no basis for criminal charges.” As we previously reported, a witness at the home says Barnes struck Fisher in the face and a fight ensued. However, the NY Post is reporting that Fisher did not want to pursue charges against Barnes.
Fisher has been seeing Gloria Govan — Barnes’ estranged wife and star of the “Basketball Wives” reality series — for several months, and was over at her house in the South Bay of Los Angeles Saturday night, along with other friends. Barnes said he got a call from one of his two sons, who “looked distressed” that Fisher was over, and that caused Barnes to drive over to the house. Once he arrived an altercation broke out between the two men, with Barnes allegedly texting a friend that he beat up Fisher and spat in his wife’s face. That’s not going to scar the young boy any further, well done.
If Barnes did this as described (and we don’t know the details), the NBA has to look hard at this. Barnes does not get to decide for a woman he is no longer seeing who she can and cannot see, and who she has over to her home. She is not property. That is the level of control seen in domestic abuse situations, and the league can’t sit back and tolerate it.