In this edition of the podcast, Kurt Helin and I sit down to discuss last night’s games, which included the Bulls snapping the Knicks’ 13-game winning streak.
We discuss the Bulls’ playoff chances, and wonder whether or not they can win a series against a first round opponent that will be either Brooklyn or Indiana.
Speaking of the Bulls, we touch on the recent report that Derrick Rose won’t be making it back at all this season, and discuss whether the team might have been able to handle things differently to alleviate some of the stress surrounding the situation.
We discuss the Warriors’ loss to the Thunder, and how Golden State may fare themselves once the playoffs get started.
It’s not a podcast without a weekly Lakers update, so we break down the rest of the schedule that both L.A. and Utah face over each team’s final three games. The Jazz have an easier go of it on paper, but the way Kobe Bryant is playing, it’s tough to envision the Lakers not securing that final playoff spot in the West.
All that, plus a discussion on the trend of teams resting their star players down the stretch. There probably isn’t anything the league can do about it realistically, and we think that’s just fine.
We now have an embedded player where you can listen blow, but we still have the old school link to the file which you can click on to listen to in a browser window, or right-click to download and save for later consumption.
Lakers management continues to project support for Walton publicly and privately — at least through this season, multiple sources told ESPN.
Walton might not be coaching to keep his job the rest of the season. But he’s almost certainly coaching to retain it for next season.
Johnson inherited, rather than hired, Walton. The new boss apparently hasn’t been impressed with his coach. As long as Johnson’s support seems so tepid and the Lakers keep losing, it will be worth continuing to evaluate Walton’s status.
LeBron getting healthy will go a long way. He can cover for this otherwise-deficient roster and make Walton look better.
But, in the meantime, Walton must avoid catastrophe to keep his job. So far, so good.
Report: Warriors project at least $100 million revenue increase with new arena next season
The Warriors’ player costs this season are in line to be about $195 million (about $145 million in salary, about $50 million in luxury tax).
If they re-sign Kevin Durant and Klay Thompson to max salaries, keep everyone under contract, sign their own draft picks and fill the rest of their roster with minimum-salary free agents, the Warriors’ spending on players next season would project to hit about $355 million (about $173 million in salary, about $182 million in luxury tax).
Internally, the Warriors project a nine-figure increase in revenue when they move into the Chase Center next season, sources said.
The Warriors already make so much money on their home games. That’s a whopping increase – one that could alone increase the league-wide salary cap a couple million dollars.
But this figure doesn’t say how much more money will reach Golden State ownership. Revenue differs from profit. The Warriors could have greater expenses, including revenue-sharing obligations, in their new arena.
Still, it’s hard to imagine this won’t be a windfall for the Golden State, one that could go a long way not just in affording stars but also keeping complementary players like Andre Iguodala and Shaun Livingston.
The salary cap promotes competitive balance. But big-spending teams still have an advantage.
“I wanted to be in a winning mentality organization,” Schroder said bluntly, not the first time he’s brought up the different direction he had from the new Hawks, who are 13-30 entering Tuesday’s game. “You just can’t go out there and try to lose.
“I’m a competitor and I try to give everything out there. I want the organization to feel the same way. Right now with our organization, all the players in the locker room, all of the coaches, they’ve got a winning mentality. That’s what makes it fun, when you go out there and go to war with your brothers. There’s nothing better than that.”
Atlanta beat Oklahoma City by 16 last night, turning Schroder’s comments on their head. But that was only one game. Obviously, the Thunder are far better than the Hawks.
Though Hawks players aren’t trying to lose when on the court, management built a team less-equipped to win now with the clear intent of landing a higher draft pick. It’s a miserable situations for veterans who are capable of contributing to a winner – which tends to make those veterans lose interest, which makes the team lose even more, which furthers management’s goals.
Schroder escaped that in Atlanta, maybe in part by complaining about his situation. I don’t blame him for continuing to call attention to the stark differences in philosophy between the Hawks and Thunder right now.