Midway through this coming NBA season (Jan. 26, to be exact) Vince Carter will turn 37. That’s a grandpa in NBA years.
The guys once known for his explosiveness has found his groove as a veteran role player off the bench in Dallas. They needed a scorer, an instant-offense guy off the bench and that role worked for Carter — he averaged 13.4 points a game and shot 40 percent from three last season. You could mention him in a Sixth Man of the Year conversation and not get laughed out of the room (he wasn’t going to win it, but you could put him on the second tier for that award).
With all that, who has got time to think about retirement? Not Carter, as he told the Star-Telegram.
“I don’t want to do that to myself,” Carter said after Thursday morning’s practice. “I don’t want to limit myself. I think doing that you’ll start thinking about [retirement] as the season goes on. I’ll just let the body pretty much dictate how I’m feeling in the end.”
Carter is in the final year of his contract and is set to make $3.2 million. At that price, for the production he provides (so long as there is no significant drop off), there likely would be more than a couple teams willing to bring him in next season. Nobody is giving him a four year deal, but he still can beat guys one-on-one, create shots and his defense is better than you would expect based on his reputation.
If he wants to play next year he can, and it sounds like he wants to.
Khris Middleton has more expectations and more pressure on him after a breakout season in Milwaukee, followed by him getting him PAID this summer.
Well, he looked pretty good on this play against the Bulls, making the steal then throwing down despite Jimmy Butler‘s efforts to stop him.
Middleton finished with 10 points on 5-of-7 shooting for the Bucks. However, Butler had the last laugh as he went off for 23 points on 12 shots and led the Bulls to the (meaningless) preseason win.
Paul George‘s first experience starting as a power forward was going up against Anthony Davis — not just one of the best power forwards in the game, one of the handful of best players in the game period. That didn’t go well for George, and he wasn’t happy about it.
His second experience was in another preseason game Tuesday, going up against the Pistons and their four, Ersan İlyasova. He’s not quite as intimidating.
George scored 20 points on 7-of-8 shooting, 4-of-5 on threes — and that was just the first quarter (you can see it all in the video above).
As we have said before, George at the four is not a bad call by the Pacers, but some of that depends on the matchup. On the nights the Pacers face Davis or Blake Griffin or LaMarcus Aldridge or Zach Randolph (or a handful of others) the Pacers’ coaching staff is going to have to adjust. But there are a lot of nights where George at the four is going to force the other team to adjust, and that will play into the Pacers’ hands.