Yet another Q&A with SprungOnSports NBA Analyst Aron Jacobowitz on the latest happenings in the NBA and the basketball world at large.
1) Memphis knocked off Oklahoma City last night without Mike Conley. Are they the biggest threats to the Thunder and Spurs out West?
Memphis has always been the dark horse in the West. They remained everyone of that when Zach Randolph went down in January, and now they have him back – playing his way into game shape. They knocked off OKC last night without Conley, and that is impressive because usually without him on the floor is when they begin to struggle and remain stagnant.
It’s an impressive win and they also beat the Lakers last week (a day after getting blown out by the Clippers). But the biggest threat to Thunder and Spurs? I dont think so. They are definitely a threat to take the West, but I believe anyone is. The Thunder are the best regular season team thus far, but that doesn’t necessarily translate into success in the postseason. They do not have the deepest roster. I’d say the Lakers and Clippers are definitely the biggest threats to steal the West this year – and the Grizzlies remain the dark horse – they are deep, but the Clippers are just as, if not more deep and the Lakers finally have a PG who can run, penetrate and dish in Ramon Sessions.
2) Bob Knight said it would be “idiotic” if the Knicks did not bring former Indiana star Mike Woodson as head coach. Do you agree?
Bob Knight says plenty of moronic things nowadays. But this probably isn’t one of them. Bringing Mike Woodson back is on par with the Clippers exercising their team option on Vinny Del Negro next season. The positives outweigh the negatives and it’s a low risk, high reward maneuver.
If the Knicks struggle to begin next season, then yes, you can definitely make a replacement, but with the recent success he has shown with the squad he’s coaching is remarkable. He has been a successful head coach in this league prior to taking the assistant coaching position with the Knicks. He brought the Hawks out of the gutter, increasing their level of play consistently for five straight seasons. He deserves the nod for Head Coach of 2012-’13. Now, if the Knicks crumble and don’t make the playoffs, that’ll be another story – and we all know James Dolan won’t stand for that. But assuming they make the postseason, he should be back.
3) Boston was able to blow Miami out over the weekend. Should Heat fans panic or brush off the result as just another regular season game?
Boston is one of the three hottest teams in the NBA right now behind the Spurs and the Clippers. They have won five straight and they continue to be one of the most impressive teams following the All-Star break. Rajon Rondo has put together an insane streak of games with at least 10 assists.
For the Heat, there’s no need to panic because every team needs to go through some adversity in the regular season in order to learn from their mistakes and miscues. You can’t just brush it off as another regular season game because they did get blown out. Dallas was blown out by the Clippers last night – you know they’re struggling for answers right now. However, Miami should come out of the East – if that doesn’t happen, THEN its time to panic.
Bonus) Kentucky just won the national championship and will likely have four players picked in the first round in June’s draft. Would the Wildcats be competitive in a game against a team like the Bobcats?
Plain and simple. N-O. There is no college team that can compete with the likes of an NBA team. It’s as simple as that. Yes, they have four first-rounders on that squad – but who says each of them are immediate impact players? And even if they are? Absolutely Not.
“Charles (Barkley) is an idiot,” Jim Boeheim said, and I tend to agree with him. Larry Brown loves to create controversy with his remarks – he says they can beat 15 NBA teams – that means he thinks they can beat a playoff team – the worst playoff team right now would be the Knicks – you think Kentucky can beat the Knicks? Or the Bucks? Or the Nets? Or Minnesota? I mean, come on now. There is just no chance. Look at Anthony Davis, the dude is a twig. He’s a beast and will be a HUGE difference maker in the NBA in a few years, but there is no way that team can beat ANY NBA team.