Kurt Helin

Fred Hoiberg: Derrick Rose’s double vision could last months

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Derrick Rose is on the court for the Bulls and averaging 12.6 points per game. However, the lingering impact of the fractured orbital bone in his face that left him with double vision is evident — he is shooting 35.9 percent overall and 5.6 percent from three (you read that right, and he’s taking two threes a game). Rather than words, let’s use a picture to illustrate the problem, here Rose’s shot chart on the season.

Rose shotchart

All of why this news from Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg is bad news for Bulls fans (or Derrick Rose fantasy owners), via K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune.

This was news to Rose, but not shocking.

The Bulls’ offense is 25th in the NBA so far this season, and while their shooting as a team is average (16th in NBA in team eFG%) they are bottom five in getting to the free throw line and offensive rebounding percentage. Hoiberg has talked of tweaking the front line rotation, mostly to improve the defense by putting Joakim Noah in for Nikola Mirotic (although I think those two should be the starters). However, what the Bulls really need is better play from their guard spots, which frankly means a lot more Jimmy Butler.

It’s a long season, but the Bulls have a lot of work to do on offense to become a threat to the top teams in the East. Rose playing better will have to be a big part of that.

Report: Dion Waiters wants to play for Sixers next season

Dion Waiters, Will Barton
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And you said nobody wanted to play for Philadelphia…

Dion Waiters is a restricted free agent next summer and a Philadelphia native. While all the talk about Thunder players who may want to go home as a free agent has focused on Kevin Durant, Waiters may be the guy to do it according to a report by Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer.

“He wants to come home,” said the source, noting that Waiters is from South Philly. “Plus, he knows that he could be the missing shooting guard they need. And he could possibility get a [very lucrative] contract with the Sixers.”

The source said that Waiters won’t publically admit his desire to play for the Sixers because he’s still under contract with the Thunder….

“He really would like that to come home,” the source said. “He talked about getting a place downtown not too far from the arena so playing at home would be less of a distraction.”

Of course, it didn’t take long for Waiters to deny this.

If I were an agent/someone in Waiters camp and wanted to start early with the effort to jack up his value and get a bigger contract next summer, I would be leaking potential landing spots as well. Which is to say that maybe Waiters would like to play in Philly, but this is all about the money and getting as big a contract offer as he can get next summer.

The Thunder will have the right to match any offer.

Whether the Sixers would want Waiters is another question. Or to phrase it better, would the Sixers pay very much to get Waiters? Philly’s need for improvement in the backcourt is not in question, but is Waiters going to fit with what they are building? Waiters has come off the bench for the Thunder this season and averaged 11 points a game, and while his shot selection should still be in question he is hitting 50 percent from beyond the arc so far this young season, plus he seems more comfortable in the midrange.

The bigger question with Waiters has always been on defense — the Thunder defense is 4.6 points per 100 possessions better with him on the bench so far this young season. Thunder coach Billy Donovan has struggled to find the right fit in the two guard spot, Waiters gives them better offense than the other options, but the defensive lapses are an issue. Do the Sixers want to take that on?

 

Anthony Davis to return, start vs. Knicks Sunday

Anthony Davis
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Anthony Davis is going to get his turn in the Madison Square Garden spotlight.

After missing two games due to a bruised hip, the Pelicans’ star will return to the court Sunday against the Knicks, something coach Alvin Gentry confirmed to the media pregame.

It will be fun to see him go up against Kristaps Porzingis at points.

While he had a rough start to the season — lacking quality point guards to create shots or get him the ball in good spaces — he has played better of late, and he’s still averaging 24 points and nine rebounds a game. His shooting percentages have slipped — he’s still finishing very well at the rim and has a spot he likes near the top of the key, but he hasn’t hit consistently from other spots on the floor this season. Although that was starting to change.

Annual Spurs HEB commercials are fantastic as always

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Every year Texas-based grocery store chain HEB does a series of ads with the Spurs star players — and they are fantastic. Like the Spurs, they are not over the top, they are just the right amount of the guys playing off each other.

Plus, where else are you going to see Kawhi Leonard cracking jokes?

Here are a couple of this year’s lineup, if you want to see them all Hoopshype has them.

Tim Duncan passes former Spur David Robinson on all-time block list

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The Sixers seemed to be setting it up, testing the old man — and Tim Duncan responded with five blocked shots.

That was enough to move him into fifth on the all-time NBA block list, passing his former teammate David Robinson to get there.

Duncan reached this milestone how he reached so many others, with sound fundamentals and consistency over a nearly two-decade career. It doesn’t matter if it’s an athletic 19-year-old Jahlil Okafor on the other end (as it was a couple times in this game), if he makes a mistake he pays the price. The same one everyone has paid since 1997.