In-season NBA news thread

HurstSoGood

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The Grizz are just playing PR games, there are no events in May, but it let's them look like they are doing something. There isn't anything else they could do anyway, while stupid Ja isn't doing anything that breaks the law, team or league rules
This. It appears he is operating well within the TN law regarding handguns. Permit, no permit. Concealed, open carry. Whatever you want, as long as you are 21 and otherwise legally eligible.
Ja will get a max contract from NY, Brooklyn, Chicago or any of the Cali teams, where management can let the tighter state (whichever one, respectively) handgun restrictions do the heavy lifting.
 

lovegtm

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This. It appears he is operating well within the TN law regarding handguns. Permit, no permit. Concealed, open carry. Whatever you want, as long as you are 21 and otherwise legally eligible.
Ja will get a max contract from NY, Brooklyn, Chicago or any of the Cali teams, where management can let the tighter state (whichever one, respectively) handgun restrictions do the heavy lifting.
Is the (presumably upcoming suspension) based on good-of-the-league stuff, along with Morant's past track record of brandishing? Otherwise, I don't quite see the issue with a guy in TN waving a gun, besides his incredibly reckless and unsafe handling of it in that video.
 

HomeRunBaker

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This. It appears he is operating well within the TN law regarding handguns. Permit, no permit. Concealed, open carry. Whatever you want, as long as you are 21 and otherwise legally eligible.
Ja will get a max contract from NY, Brooklyn, Chicago or any of the Cali teams, where management can let the tighter state (whichever one, respectively) handgun restrictions do the heavy lifting.
It's not about the law it is about the NBA being able to implement its "Conduct detrimental to the league" policy to cover these actions which they will surely do for a second time. Arenas got what, 50 games? Morant's first suspension was for 8 so I'd have to guess a second offense is going to be in the Arenas vacinity if not for the entire season.
 

lovegtm

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It's not about the law it is about the NBA being able to implement its "Conduct detrimental to the league" policy to cover these actions which they will surely do for a second time. Arenas got what, 50 games? Morant's first suspension was for 8 so I'd have to guess a second offense is going to be in the Arenas vacinity if not for the entire season.
Good context. Crazy to think that Ja could get 50, but sounds about right, given that you are correct and he got 8.
 

HurstSoGood

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It's not about the law it is about the NBA being able to implement its "Conduct detrimental to the league" policy to cover these actions which they will surely do for a second time. Arenas got what, 50 games? Morant's first suspension was for 8 so I'd have to guess a second offense is going to be in the Arenas vacinity if not for the entire season.
You may be right on what the NBA may look to do here, but iirc, the Arenas situation was far worse. Gilbert got into an argument with a teammate, threatened the use of guns and showed up to practice a couple days later with multiple loaded guns. There was a clear and present danger to everyone in the locker room. Unless I missed something (which is totally possible), Ja was only caught on video playing karaoke, brandishing a handgun in a car and not actually threatening anyone. (Arenas disputed details of his situation, fwiw) Obviously still a dumb look for Morant.
Edit: Found this. View: https://bleacherreport.com/articles/2576918-caron-butler-details-gilbert-arenas-gun-incident-in-new-book
 

moondog80

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You may be right on what the NBA may look to do here, but iirc, the Arenas situation was far worse.
What Arenas did was worse, but one key difference is that Morant's is a second offense, and the first received a sizable suspension, just 10 weeks prior.

I also think that times change and leagues shouldn't necessarily be beholden to precedents set 15 years ago.
 

HurstSoGood

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Agreed, moondog. Morant is not covering himself in glory. I'm having deja vu of Allen Iverson all over again.
 

InstaFace

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Everyone seemed to like him, but I don't think any coach in the league (who hasn't won an NBA title with their current franchise) would've survived back to back embarrassing playoff losses in series that began with them as the favorite. Monty, Nurse, Budenholzer, that's a decent crop of HCs looking for jobs. Hopefully Doc joins that list tomorrow.
I don't know how anyone could watch the PHI-BOS series and come to the conclusion that it was a failure of coaching. There is nothing Doc, Erik Spoelstra or Zombie Red Auerbach could have done to make Joel Embiid and James Harden suddenly care and believe in themselves and focus on execution. If being in a playoff Game 7 with their legacy partly on the line wasn't going to do it for them, I'm not sure what difference a change in coach would make.
 

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HomeRunBaker

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I don't know how anyone could watch the PHI-BOS series and come to the conclusion that it was a failure of coaching. There is nothing Doc, Erik Spoelstra or Zombie Red Auerbach could have done to make Joel Embiid and James Harden suddenly care and believe in themselves and focus on execution. If being in a playoff Game 7 with their legacy partly on the line wasn't going to do it for them, I'm not sure what difference a change in coach would make.
The worst part of reading/commenting on NBA playoff basketball is the amount of praise/blame that is given to a Head Coach over parts of the game that they have absolutely no control over. Doc in G7 when they couldn't knock down open threes, Mazzulla in G5 when Horford was 0-7 on wide open threes. It's incomprehensible sometimes. Make open threes, Coach good. Miss open threes Coach bad.
 

BigJimEd

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Is the (presumably upcoming suspension) based on good-of-the-league stuff, along with Morant's past track record of brandishing? Otherwise, I don't quite see the issue with a guy in TN waving a gun, besides his incredibly reckless and unsafe handling of it in that video.
Do we know he was in TN? Initially, thought I read that the Grizzlies were looking into where it was filmed but haven't seen anything since.


The 50 game suspension is automatic for having a firearm on team premises. Obviously doesn't apply here.
 

slamminsammya

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The worst part of reading/commenting on NBA playoff basketball is the amount of praise/blame that is given to a Head Coach over parts of the game that they have absolutely no control over. Doc in G7 when they couldn't knock down open threes, Mazzulla in G5 when Horford was 0-7 on wide open threes. It's incomprehensible sometimes. Make open threes, Coach good. Miss open threes Coach bad.
Amen brother. And you can apply this also to the armchair psychologizing about star players.
 

Kliq

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People are conflating the issue too much. It's very different from the Arenas situation, which involved having a firearm and, presumably, threatening people with the firearm. It's also not just as a case of Morant violating local gun laws.

This is a player who already got jammed up once for this exact same action, and having a history of morally questionable acts, getting suspended and trying to sell an image of "I'm a changed man" then doing the exact same thing that got him jammed up in the first place. I think he will get hit hard with a suspension by the league; the NBA can't play around at all when it comes to their stars and firearms--the image of the league is always one step away from being decried by people as a bunch of young gang bangers with too much money and not enough brains. The NBA as a whole has done a really good job over the last 15 years of cleaning that image up, but it will always be out there, unfortunately as a consequence of being an entertainment product helmed by young Black men.
 

Justthetippett

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Amen brother. And you can apply this also to the armchair psychologizing about star players.
Absolutely. Embiid is the same player whether his guys make (or Tatum misses) a few more shots in Game 6. And yet he's defined one way or the other based off of it. The snap analysis is always kind of dumb. Over a career, these kinds of things even out, but it's no wonder Giannis went off in response to that question after the Bucks' loss. All these guys can do is put themselves in position to win. Then it really does come down to a very fine margin, and some luck.
 

Kliq

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Absolutely. Embiid is the same player whether his guys make (or Tatum misses) a few more shots in Game 6. And yet he's defined one way or the other based off of it. The snap analysis is always kind of dumb. Over a career, these kinds of things even out, but it's no wonder Giannis went off in response to that question after the Bucks' loss. All these guys can do is put themselves in position to win. Then it really does come down to a very fine margin, and some luck.
There is a narrative out there that whenever a team "fails" in the postseason, they just cannot come back the same. They need to change something, either firing a coach, or trading a key player for something else, but they need to look like they are being proactive in solving some sort of issue. The truth is playoff series are very small sample sizes and unless a team just has a super glaring weakness that got exploited, chances are teams can run it back the following year and achieve a different result.
 

InstaFace

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I mean, the Celtics basically ran it back the next season. Yeah, we added Brogdon, we may have had a falloff in performance from Smart and/or Timelord, but our roster really really resembles last year's. It can absolutely be done. Nobody, like, said "we have to blow it up if we ever want to win a title" after Golden State taught us a lesson last year.

So, sometimes even devoted fans can be reasonable, and teams can make responsible choices about "no, actually, we DO have enough to compete here, let's not go crazy". There's no preordained need to do change for change's sake. Just depends how neurotic the GM is, or how much pressure he's getting from ownership to Do Something.
 

HomeRunBaker

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I mean, the Celtics basically ran it back the next season. Yeah, we added Brogdon, we may have had a falloff in performance from Smart and/or Timelord, but our roster really really resembles last year's. It can absolutely be done. Nobody, like, said "we have to blow it up if we ever want to win a title" after Golden State taught us a lesson last year.

So, sometimes even devoted fans can be reasonable, and teams can make responsible choices about "no, actually, we DO have enough to compete here, let's not go crazy". There's no preordained need to do change for change's sake. Just depends how neurotic the GM is, or how much pressure he's getting from ownership to Do Something.
The end of that final sentence is crucial. Think Utah with Malone/Stockton, or even with Gobert/Mitchell. If the ownership is happy where they are the GM isn't going to put himself and his job on the line by taking risks. Otoh, if the owner wants action taken (Minnesota? Nets?) then high risk moves will be coming as that is the directive from above.

Havinf said that, our Celtics of last year were in a far different position than the Sixers of this year. Adding a piece in Brogdon was really our only glaring hole while the Sixers have a ton of questions surrounding Harden and how to upgrade their role players.
 

tims4wins

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There is a narrative out there that whenever a team "fails" in the postseason, they just cannot come back the same. They need to change something, either firing a coach, or trading a key player for something else, but they need to look like they are being proactive in solving some sort of issue. The truth is playoff series are very small sample sizes and unless a team just has a super glaring weakness that got exploited, chances are teams can run it back the following year and achieve a different result.
Hell, on paper the 2018 Patriots looked worse than the 2017 Patriots.
 

Euclis20

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People are conflating the issue too much. It's very different from the Arenas situation, which involved having a firearm and, presumably, threatening people with the firearm. It's also not just as a case of Morant violating local gun laws.

This is a player who already got jammed up once for this exact same action, and having a history of morally questionable acts, getting suspended and trying to sell an image of "I'm a changed man" then doing the exact same thing that got him jammed up in the first place. I think he will get hit hard with a suspension by the league; the NBA can't play around at all when it comes to their stars and firearms--the image of the league is always one step away from being decried by people as a bunch of young gang bangers with too much money and not enough brains. The NBA as a whole has done a really good job over the last 15 years of cleaning that image up, but it will always be out there, unfortunately as a consequence of being an entertainment product helmed by young Black men.
Is it that different from Arenas? Maybe this time, but earlier this year:

https://theathletic.com/4157284/2023/02/05/pacers-grizzlies-laser-ja-morant-investigation/

Following a game between the Indiana Pacers and Memphis Grizzlies on Jan. 29 in Memphis, acquaintances of Grizzlies star Ja Morant aggressively confronted members of the Pacers traveling party near the team’s bus in the loading area of FedExForum, and later someone in a slow-moving SUV — which Morant was riding in — trained a red laser on them.

The two members of the traveling party who spoke to The Athletic said that they did not see who shined the laser from the SUV. They also don’t know if the laser was attached to a gun, but they believed it was. A Pacers security guard in the loading area at the time remarked: “That’s 100 percent a gun.”

“We felt we were in grave danger,” one person who was present said. The two sources who spoke to The Athletic requested anonymity because they fear retribution from those who confronted them. They said they considered filing a report with police but decided against it for the same reason.
We've had multiple incidents with him going back over the last 12 months (in addition to the above, he reportedly punched a teenager while carrying a gun in his waistband, and he and his friends reportedly threatened a security guard who got into an argument with his mother), most of which involved him definitely or possibly carrying a gun. He's already lost tens of millions of dollars due to his suspension and likely missing out on the super max extension. The league is lucky the Grizzlies aren't still playing so they can take their time figuring this out, but it wouldn't shock me to see them go up to a year. It's unbelievable to me that he's still doing this (on camera!) after what he's already lost. What would it take to get his attention?
 

Justthetippett

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I would say 10 game suspension at most, coupled with a sitdown at the League office where he's told in no uncertain terms to cut this out or else. What he needs is a good influence. I have no idea who that would be but there are plenty of NBA alumni mentors around.
 

HomeRunBaker

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I would say 10 game suspension at most, coupled with a sitdown at the League office where he's told in no uncertain terms to cut this out or else. What he needs is a good influence. I have no idea who that would be but there are plenty of NBA alumni mentors around.
This already happened. It was 8 games and a sit down. It didn't work. I expect 50-82 games pretty confidently.
 

Tony C

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I'd be surprised by a year for Ja but not totally shocked. And, yes, the level of underplaying of Ja's offenses ("is it legal or not to open carry a gun in state x?") is really missing the gravity of his behavior and the arbitrary nature of NBA justice which is not dependent on state laws. In the least. I don't think he'll get a year but I suspect a half season is possible. Suspensions also need to have a playoff element -- like for every 10 game regular season suspension automatically 1 game off in the playoffs, too.

edit: per posts since I started...I'd bet my house it'll be well more than 10 games. 25 minimum but more likely a half season or more.
 

Euclis20

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I would say 10 game suspension at most, coupled with a sitdown at the League office where he's told in no uncertain terms to cut this out or else. What he needs is a good influence. I have no idea who that would be but there are plenty of NBA alumni mentors around.
He was just suspended for 8 games less than 2 months ago, for this very thing. I think 25 games is the absolute floor, I expect around half a season, and the full year wouldn't surprise me.
 

DeJesus Built My Hotrod

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The suspension is one thing. Do his sponsors stick with him? I am as cynical as the next person but the news has only been bad for him since his sneaker release. Nike has to be livid right now.

Setting aside the product name, does a secondary sports drink want to associate with Morant going forward?
 

djbayko

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I would say 10 game suspension at most, coupled with a sitdown at the League office where he's told in no uncertain terms to cut this out or else. What he needs is a good influence. I have no idea who that would be but there are plenty of NBA alumni mentors around.
And increasing the prior suspension by 2 games will tell him that they really mean it this time?
 

Auger34

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I'd be surprised by a year for Ja but not totally shocked. And, yes, the level of underplaying of Ja's offenses ("is it legal or not to open carry a gun in state x?") is really missing the gravity of his behavior and the arbitrary nature of NBA justice which is not dependent on state laws. In the least. I don't think he'll get a year but I suspect a half season is possible. Suspensions also need to have a playoff element -- like for every 10 game regular season suspension automatically 1 game off in the playoffs, too.

edit: per posts since I started...I'd bet my house it'll be well more than 10 games. 25 minimum but more likely a half season or more.
100% agree.

My first guess was 30 games. I think the max would be about 60. I can’t see them going a full year (although I could be wrong).

I think one thing we can all agree on is that it will definitely be more than 10

The funniest/worst part about all of this is that the guy filming is his best friend Devontae Pack. Pack’s one of the people that got into it with Andrew Nembhard and was banned from home games. He’s also one of the people that has been thrown under the bus, both subtly and not, for Ja’s behavior.
In that video, even he recognizes it’s fucking stupid to have the gun! As soon as he realizes Ja has the gun he tries his hardest to get the camera off of him but it was too late.…this is a long way of saying that it’s pretty clear now that it’s not the people around him or anything like that…it’s Ja himself and he’s a fucking dumbass
 

Justthetippett

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...this is a long way of saying that it’s pretty clear now that it’s not the people around him or anything like that…it’s Ja himself and he’s a fucking dumbass
It could be both...

What's the benefit of having this guy separated from the team structure for half a season? Idk. Maybe if paired with an actual wellness program or something. Since Hernandez (I realize, different facts, he didn't suffer consequences for his actions until too late, etc.) my mind goes to worst case scenarios and I think a 40, 50, 60 game suspension is unlikely to yield a positive result for him or the association.
 

HomeRunBaker

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It could be both...

What's the benefit of having this guy separated from the team structure for half a season? Idk. Maybe if paired with an actual wellness program or something. Since Hernandez (I realize, different facts, he didn't suffer consequences for his actions until too late, etc.) my mind goes to worst case scenarios and I think a 40, 50, 60 game suspension is unlikely to yield a positive result for him or the association.
The benefit is the message it sends to other NBA players that you better not do something this foolish or there will be consequences. The leagues priority isn't to yield a positive result for him...it is protect itself from the imagine Morant is flaunting. He is an employee.
 

InstaFace

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The suspension is one thing. Do his sponsors stick with him? I am as cynical as the next person but the news has only been bad for him since his sneaker release. Nike has to be livid right now.

Setting aside the product name, does a secondary sports drink want to associate with Morant going forward?
 

Justthetippett

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The benefit is the message it sends to other NBA players that you better not do something this foolish or there will be consequences. The leagues priority isn't to yield a positive result for him...it is protect itself from the imagine Morant is flaunting. He is an employee.
All true, and he's a very prominent employee at that. But they have a chance to reach the same deterrent outcome without this guy combusting or doing something irredeemable, which only hurts the League more in the long run. I think that's through financial penalties and mentoring/counseling/whatever program they come up with, more than suspensions.
 

Jim Ed Rice in HOF

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All true, and he's a very prominent employee at that. But they have a chance to reach the same deterrent outcome without this guy combusting or doing something irredeemable, which only hurts the League more in the long run. I think that's through financial penalties and mentoring/counseling/whatever program they come up with, more than suspensions.
I don't know enough about the CBA language and maximum fines allowed but I have to imagine anything the league can fine him is dwarfed by the amount that a nice lengthy suspension would cost him. You suspend him half a year and take away ~$17M of his salary that might make him think a little. Of course, he's not exhibiting too many signs of understanding cause/effect so maybe people that depend on his income will do it for him.
 

HomeRunBaker

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All true, and he's a very prominent employee at that. But they have a chance to reach the same deterrent outcome without this guy combusting or doing something irredeemable, which only hurts the League more in the long run. I think that's through financial penalties and mentoring/counseling/whatever program they come up with, more than suspensions.
That's exactly what a suspension would allow them to do which is why they have that language in the CBA. Otherwise they are limited as to how much they can fine without the Players Union appealing. You have to make it all make sense and package the penalty together as one. As far as the mentoring/counseling that falls on the team to provide imo rather than the league. Obv there would be support, encouragement from the league but that's on the employer from my view. The league acts more as the governing body in a case such as this.
 

Euclis20

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I'm hoping Wembanyama goes west, but among the teams with a realistic shot, Orlando frightens me the most. Him and Paolo are just a terrifying combination to think about.
 

Cellar-Door

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i don't care where Wemby goes so long as it isn't DAL or HOU, both those shitstain franchises and owners deserve nothing good.
Ideal lottery is HOU falling to 6 and DAL having to send their pick to NYK.
 

Tony C

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I'm sort of rooting for San Antonio...let Pops have some fun during his last stretch of coaching. Also intrigued by his mesh with LaMelo in Charlotte.
 

HomeRunBaker

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I'm sort of rooting for San Antonio...let Pops have some fun during his last stretch of coaching. Also intrigued by his mesh with LaMelo in Charlotte.
Pop seems to have the most fun when he's miserable. Imagine being the wives on a cruise week with Pop and Belichick?
 

Euclis20

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I'd love nothing more than to the Spurs fall to the 6th or 7th pick (1/3 chance that happens), followed by Pop resigning 5 minutes later. Belichick can plug away for a few more years to get the wins record, I don't know what else Pop has to accomplish (unless he wants to die on the bench during a game in which his team is losing by 25).
 

GreenMonster49

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I want two things:
* Houston to finish with a better first round pick than San Antonio (so Houston gets the 33rd pick and it conveys to Boston), because I'm a selfish fan.
* At least one of Chicago, OKC, Toronto or New Orleans to get a top-3 pick and push Dallas outside the top 10 (so their protected pick conveys to New York), because I want to see Mark Cuban's face when he realizes all the tanking was for nought.
 

Ale Xander

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I’m hoping for Charlotte. They have had a lot injury bad luck with Ball and Hayward (who hasn’t with Gordon (too soon)) and we get a chance to see him more often

or Portland because of Walton and Alden and they are kind of hopeless

No Houston or San Antonio please (too many championships/luck)
 

tims4wins

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Does the Harden situation impact how we are rooting for Houston to do tonight? Like, do we want them to get #1 so he goes there? Doesn't go there?
 

PedroKsBambino

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I'd root for Portland, would be fun outcome for a likeable org and for Dame. Second for me would be OKC, and third is San Antonio.

Dallas would be fun as well, but don't like rewarding their tank (and the overall awful decision making the last couple years). Plus, Kyrie....
 

Justthetippett

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Portland would be fun. San Antonio has had enough luck, but Pop would also be great for Wemby's development. Can't wait to see this guy on an NBA court against the big boys.