Ryan Anderson is the New Orleans stretch four that they wanted to come in off the bench, knock down shots, pull a defending big out of the paint and give guys like Anthony Davis and Greg Stiemsma room to operate.
Except he will not do that for the next few weeks — Anderson is out 1-3 weeks with a chip fracture in the second toe on his right foot, the team announced. He had been feeling “discomfort” in practice so team doctors took a look and found this.
In the short term this likely means even more Davis and some Jason Smith, or Monty Williams could try some small ball lineups.
Anderson is one of the best stretch fours in the league and he averaged 16.2 points a game and shot 38.2 percent from three last season. However his efficiency suffered some because New Orleans lacked shot creators, so Ryan had to do more of it for himself and that’s not his strength.
Which is why I expect a strong year for Anderson once he gets healthy — Davis, Jrue Holiday, Tyreke Evans and others on this team will create the shots, and if they kick out he will make the defense pay.
Or at least he will in 1-3 weeks.
Utah’s Gordon Hayward abused the Lakers’ Jordan Clarkson on this play.
First, Hayward reads and steals Clarkson’s poor feed into the post intended for Kobe Bryant, then going up the sideline he takes his dribble behind Clarkson’s back to keep going. It all ends in a Rudy Gobert dunk.
Three quick takeaways here:
1) Gordon Hayward is a lot better than many fans realize. He can lead this team.
2) It’s still all about the development with Clarkson, and that’s going to mean some hard lessons.
3) Hayward may have the best hair in the NBA, even if it’s going a bit Macklemore.
(Hat tip reddit)
VIZZINI: “So, it is down to you. And it is down to me.”
MAN IN BLACK nods and comes nearer…
MAN IN BLACK: “Perhaps an arrangement can be reached.”
VIZZINI: “There will be no arrangement…”
MAN IN BLACK: “But if there can be no arrangement, then we are at an impasse.”
That farcical scene from The Princess Bride pretty much sums up where we are with the Tristan Thompson holdout with the Cleveland Cavaliers, minus the Iocane powder. (Although that scene was a battle of wits in the movie and this process seems to lack much wit.) The Cavaliers have put a five-year, $80 million offer on the table. Thompson wants a max deal (or at least a more than has been offered), but he also doesn’t want to play for the qualifying offer and didn’t sign it. LeBron James just wants the two sides just to get it done.
Brian Windhorst of ESPN thinks LeBron could be very disappointed.
Windhorst was on the Zach Lowe podcast at Grantland (which you should be listening to anyway) and had this to say about the Thompson holdout:
“I actually believe it will probably go months. This will go well into the regular season.”
Windhorst compared it to a similar situation back in 2007 with Anderson Varejao, which eventually only broke because the then Charlotte Bobcats signed Varejao to an offer sheet. Thompson is a restricted free agent, meaning the Cavaliers can match any offer, but only Portland and Philadelphia have the cap space right now to offer him a max contract. Neither team has shown any interest in doing so.
And so we wait. And we may be waiting a while.