Usually my gut reaction is to just shred the voters when the NBA’s annual awards are announced. Because there always are some loopy choices.
Except, with the All-Rookie teams announced Wednesday, I don’t hate it. First, so what we know we are talking about, here is your NBA All-Rookie first team:
Blake Griffin, L.A. Clippers
John Wall, Washington
Landry Fields, New York
DeMarcus Cousins, Sacramento
Gary Neal, San Antonio
While we’re at it, here’s the NBA All-Rookie second team:
Greg Monroe, Detroit
Wesley Johnson, Minnesota
Eric Bledsoe, L.A. Clippers
Derrick Favors, Utah
Paul George, Indiana
I don’t hate it, not even as we move down the list of guys who didn’t make the cut. I’d really like to know who voted Omer Asik of the Bulls on the All-Rookie first team, but that’s back to our always-bothersome transparency issue.
You can make an argument that Monroe deserved to be on the first team and would have been if voters could have actually stomached watching more Pistons games. But I’m good with Cousins being your center on that first lineup and saying he had a better year than Monroe. As with all things Detroit, blame coach John Kuester for this problem. If you ant to put Monroe on the first team for Neal (and forget positioning), that makes sense to me, but either way I’m not that troubled.
Kobe Bryant reflected, told stories and showed his emotions.
For nearly 25 minutes, the Lakers star talked about his pending retirement. It was pretty cool.
DeAndre Jordan‘s free-throw problems – 38.7% this season, 41.5% for his career – are mental.
You can’t watch this trip to the line and convince me otherwise.
Nene hurt his calf. Drew Gooden is banged up. Martell Webster is out for the season.
Those are three players the Wizards expected to play power forward this season.
So, Washington – which has lost four straight – will bring in another big man: Ryan Hollins.
Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports:
The Wizards have a full roster of 15 players. They don’t qualify for a hardship exemption, which a team gets if four players have missed three straight games and will continue to be out. Only Webster and Alan Anderson definitely fit that bill. Gooden, who has missed five straight, might. But it’s unclear both how many of those absences were due to injury and when he’ll return.
So, Washington will have to waive someone to sign Hollins now. It’ll probably be Webster, whose $5,845,250 2016-17 salary is just $2.5 million guaranteed. If he’s out for the year and the Wizards plan to drop him by the summer to clear cap space, why not just do it now?
Hollins is more center than power forward and doesn’t appear to fit well with Marcin Gortat. But at this point, Washington just needs big bodies. Hollins – a nine-year veteran who plays decent interior defense, lacks offensive skill and rebounds poorly for his 7-foot frame – is at least that.
Sometimes – as Kristaps Porzingis sees against Dwight Howard – it’s more flattering just to play James Harden-level defense.