The Wizards made a move that in and of itself would barely ripple the NBA waters — on Sunday they waived guard Shaun Livingston and center Earl Barron. Both were on non-guaranteed contracts.
Yawn. Both guys saw very limited minutes and there contributions were minimal. (For the Lakers fans and others that will inevitably tweet “we should pick them up,” note that these guys couldn’t get off the bench and were just cut by the 3-22 Wizards. They are not helping any good team. Or the Lakers.)
But as Ben Standig notes at CSNWashington.com, this is one shoe with another likely to drop soon.
The intrigue lies in what comes next. Two players waived, but none signed, leaving the roster at 13. Don’t forget of that 13, John Wall, Trevor Ariza, Trevor Booker and A.J. Price are injured with only Ariza potentially back in the coming days. That leaves nine active bodies, an unsustainable number….
Let us start with the basics. The roster as it stands has two actual guards in Jordan Crawford and Bradley Beal. That’s it, that’s the list – and neither of those two are natural floor leaders. Cartier Martin and Martell Webster can swing down into the backcourt as needed. Nene, Chris Singleton, Jan Vesely are the remaining forwards with Emeka Okafor and Kevin Seraphin at center.
Even before this moment, the team needed another point guard, especially when Price fractured his right hand two weeks ago and even more so now that the roster doesn’t actually have a healthy one.
Looks like you may see a D-League call up or something, but that the Wizards have their eyes set on trying to make bigger moves that could change their future. Of course, the biggest question remains what to do with John Wall, who is eligible for a contract extension next summer.
So much attention is paid to Lonzo Ball‘s father, jumper and passes. Those are the major storylines for the Lakers rookie.
But he has such a diverse skill set, and this is absolutely part of it. Ball is a savvy off-ball cutter in the halfcourt with the athleticism to get above the rim and finish alley-oops.
But finish them over 7-footer Willie Cauley-Stein, who was tracking the play (though slightly late)? That’s an eye-opener, even in the Kings’ 113-102 win.
When Marc Gasol‘s 3/4-court attempt went through the net, it seemed to barely matter the ball left his hands just after the first-quarter buzzer. After all, the Grizzlies led the Mavericks by 15, anyway.
Turns out, Memphis really needed that basket.
Toronto has been the second best team in the East this young season. Not that anyone is really convinced they will be called that by the time we get to the playoffs (or even the All-Star break, or even Christmas), but for the first 16-18 games of the season their new move-the-ball offense had them at 11-5 and looking solid.
Wednesday night the Knicks dismantled the Raptors.
Especially in the third quarter when the Knicks went on a 28-0 run to blow the doors off the Raptors (video above). The Knicks dominated the third 41-10, when Toronto shot just 1-of-16 from the floor.
New York is gaining confidence with each win this season, they are a fun team to watch that is starting to find an identity (now that a certain three-sided shaped one is not being forced upon them). Kristaps Porzingis is a monster, and while the Knicks overpaid the market for Tim Hardaway Jr. he has lived up to his contract this season. With rookie point guard Frank Ntilikina showing some nice defense and playmaking skills as a rookie (although he is undoubtedly still a work in progress), you can see a path to a strong future unfolding. There are real reasons for hope in New York. Someone just keep James Dolan distracted and away from the basketball operations side of the building.
I’m not sure who benefited from Devin Booker‘s buzzer-beating, overtime-forcing 3-pointer. The Suns still lost to the Bucks, 113-107. The extra five minutes featured more of the same relatively bad basketball we’d seen between Phoenix (bad) and Milwaukee (shorthanded) through 48 minutes.
But darn if this shot wasn’t really cool and clutch.