1 Episode results for "Gerry Jackson"

11 in 90 (Western Conference 11.26.18)

Dunc'd On Basketball Podcast

1:27:18 hr | 2 years ago

11 in 90 (Western Conference 11.26.18)

"Just like we have a mission to follow every team and give you the best national NBA coverage that covers every team navy federal has a to put members I by making their financial goals. The priority receive a lifetime membership benefits to help you and your family accomplished your life missions, like a full suite of financial products designed to figure needs twenty four seven live support and access to over three hundred branches on or near military bases. Visit navyfederal dot org. For more information. Call one eight eight eight four to sixty three twenty eight or download the navy Federal Credit Union app. Message and data rates may apply. Are we got an another mailbag addition first time to get to the west those seem to be a little more interested in the west. We got a ton of questions. Thank you so much for everyone who's submitted. And if we can't get to yours, we apologize. We are going to try and stick it to a solid eight minutes of recording time per team. So we could actually get through all of these in one episode, and let's start with LIAM's team this week. Really eager to hear what he has the say about the nine eleven Minnesota Timberwolves. They are foreign to in their last six five and two since the trade still a negative two point nine net rating, which is twenty fourth in the NBA their offense is eighteenth defense is on the come twenty first and they project actually for forty two wins. Although fivethirtyeight projections are probably all screwed up because of the fact that they don't have Butler anymore and how they've played better without Butler and a bunch of other stuff. So Liam wanted just ask you real quickly before we get into some of these questions. Here's how they looked since the trade how they got into this five and two record. Yeah. So they've been really impressive over their last seven games. There is the second best defensive team since the Jimmy the second best defensive team since the Jimmy Butler trade and they've been really good just defensively. Over on the first thing, I did has looked at the schedule and they've actually played some pretty good offenses Brooklyn. They played twice as tenth Norrland's is fourth Portland. Seven Denver's eighth. So it's not like they've been doing it against the bad. Schedule. And I think I mean, the biggest thing that's changed is, you know, Covington and sorry, I've really helped them out covington's been incredible defensively since he's gotten there. He's always been a great off ball defender. But he's been as aggressive as I've ever seen. He's he's totally taking chances, and you know, playing really aggressive with this help off ball. He's he's get a guy like three point two steals per game and four point five deflections per game in the six games that he's played with the wolves. And the ease normally near the leaderboard in both those categories, but those just are huge jump in his usual production, any eases blown up everything he's plugging holes, and he's really shrinking the floor for the offense. So he's been huge in the defensive upgrade from such Taliban been big as well. Sorry, which I think is kind of an underrated defender. I think he rotates really, well, he always knows where to be he's going to execute me. He tools think that tall ver is a worst defensive player this point in charge. I'd say so I think Tyler is a little bit slow. I think the defensive numbers with Talavera before the trade even kind of bear that out a little bit. So I I don't know why you a little bit higher on his defense. You said it the other way Ron so I just wanted to be clear what you're saying. Oh, yeah. What is and what one quick one quick thing? I wanted to add in Covington did a lot of aggressive digging down in that Brooklyn game and totally short-circuited Brooklyn's offense. They weren't really used to that of just having guys get into their driving lanes, and they couldn't make the passes because Covington can get back to his guy so quickly and he didn't get as many steals in that specific area, but it just completely screwed up Brooklyn's offense. And that really yet. I gotta help a lot too. When you have some limited pick and roll defence combos to have a guy who can help make a guy pickup is dribble early. Get a deflection. Still get back to his man. Now, you could say, hey, maybe Jimmy Butler was the guy who is supposed to be doing that. Maybe not. It in his disengage form this season. But they did actually defend reasonably well when Butler was on the floor last year, also. Yeah. And I think another part of what they've done is. They've switched up some of their defensive tendencies, I think Jim Peterson in the Chicago game said statistically, they switched more against the Brooklyn than they had against any team all season. And I think the tests confirm that they've switched up the defense of the more against the bulls. They were you know, blitzing pick and rolls a hedging some they were dropping some they really switching up to keep Levin off balance. And I think you can do that. When you have a guy like Covington that can cover a lot of ground and wreak havoc. And sorry. That's I think a little bit more mobile than tolerance. So they definitely have a lot more defensive versatility. And then I think you gotta attribute I think I mean, it's tough to this kind of abstract, but I think having the Jimmy Butler out of the locker room, and, you know, more of a positive vibe with the team has also been a huge factor. So let's take a few questions here. Let's start. Why is Titus Jones getting time over Josh a Kogi and the idea there, I think is well you've got Dirk rose playing some basically his best ball. Since the first ACL tear or you only at one but the first knee injury should say. So why don't you just play him a point guard? You could play a Kogi on the second unit. What do you guys think I think it's tough to take rose out of the? I mean, I'm not the biggest area rose guy. But I mean, he's I think he's got like sixty percent shooting percentage on the season on a huge usage. So it's pretty hard to take him out of the game right now. So I think it's a really tough call 'cause I really like Thai Jones and Josh Kogi neither of them are shooting. Well at all Joshua Kobi's forty six percent shooting percentage. Thais Jones's forty one percent. And both are really good defensively. Actually, Josh co he's been the most impressive rookie to me defensively really fights over screens. Well, and he's just a he's a beast on ball as far as sliding laterally in ties Jones as passing lanes about as well as any player out there. So I don't know. I I guess it's a tough call. I I'd probably go ties Jones just because I expect these shooting to get way better whereas Okogie rookie, that's probably gonna struggle with that throughout the and he's still gets guarded a out. There is one I think also they've had a lot of success playing rose. Off the ball. I noticed dichotomy in rose where he would say, you know, he kinda came up. And there was this idea that use this pure point guard right at that sexually if you read some of the scouting reports on him. That's what he was lauded as back in high school. But when he would go into that modo. Som. Sometimes when you play for team USA, for example, his pure point guard was just stand up top than just three passes to guys not really attack at all. And so I think saying, hey, you know, we're going to your job is to go out there and score. We'll have ties Jones run things every once in a while let rose attack from the wing get downhill little bit more. Maybe the reads aren't as complex there as well. So he's never been an amazing passer and just let him be focused on getting buckets, and they seem to have had some success there. I mean, obviously a lot of this is prone for Russian Dirk roses, not going to be shooting. Forty seven percent on threes. The wolves will not be the number two defense for the rest of the year. But certainly some signs a on a team that is talented. I mean, they really kind of been doing this without getting much from Wiggins. Right. I mean, I I don't think he's had any real big games other than just in terms of volume since the trade that I recall, can I give you a stat on that. Actually, I looked up players that had shot at least forty shots from mid range on the season. And Andrew Wiggins is dead last that of sixty nine players that have shot at least forty mid-range shots in the season. He shouldn't like twenty percent. So no, not not exactly lighting enough this year. Well, an and so on top of that Wiggins does have to twenty point game since they traded Butler. But both of them were on games where he shot below fifty percent from the field and had not a ton of free. Throws one game. He had five free throw attempts in the other game he had to so it's more of a volume game for him. When he's any end. There was one of those games thing was the Pels game where he hit a bunch of threes in the early going, and then tapered off after that he notably had zero points in their win over the Chicago Bulls on Saturday in a game where I think he in Covington combined to go to for thirty. I believe it. Like that one for thirty. Yeah. And they and they still had it like a one eleven offense rating 'cause Karl Anthony towns is a monster. Dirk rose had a really nice game as well. A quick point on the Kobe thing I really like gosh Kogi big fan. But I like the approach that a lot of teams have gone to give Carlisle credit for this of having multiple ball handlers out there in the second unit. Just because it gives you options in case something stagnates if everything was on Derrick rose offensively when those lineups their nights when his game isn't going mall. As Nate said he can sometimes benefit from being off ball little bit more. And so Ty Jones gives them that option while a Cokie. I think is made better decisions with bombs ends. You're not going to run stuff with a coke as the primary Balkan were that often Jones gives them a more of a comfortable comfortably factor. And I think team should generally go in that direction less. They faced an opponent that can attack it especially in the regular season. I would be playing two possibly three guys who are comfortable with the ball in their hands. If the other team has their starters off for quick last one here, we got thirty seconds left. What are the chances the wolves can salvage a playoff spot the season? S a DJ writer. I don't think it's great. I mean, I think if they are in the east and they had to get to forty one wins. I think that actually be boss willing to get back to nine eleven where they were is impressive. But I mean, really there aren't any teams in the west that were looking going to be in contention for the playoffs that have totally fallen out. And then you've got other teams really, you know, maybe you could say the Spurs, but they're still nine and ten you got the Grizz at twelve and seven after a weird lost the Knicks clippers or playing well, the Jesuit falter. But you expect them to turn around me. So there's just so many teams involved that if you could say, hey, if they get forty one Windsor to make the playoffs I might be optimistic. But I still don't think they have much shot because there's just so much competition there. But obviously if they continue to defend like this. It's a possibility. All right. We'll be back to talk about LIAM's Utah Jazz after this from Robin Hood, which is an investing app that lets you buy and sell socks ET apps options cryptos all commission free. So if you're a stock market newcomer you can invest for the first time with. Confidence. You don't have to feel limited in what you can do by having to make a payment for commission on each trade. Other brokerages charge up to ten bucks for every trade, and Robert doesn't charge commission. So that means you can keep all your profits from trading sides, and their interface is really good clear design easy to understand charts and market data to let you place a trade on your smartphone in just four taps, or if you're on desktop, you can view some of their stock collections. 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Contusion negative zero point two net rating is seventeenth that cleaned the glass dubber is gonna look better than the raw numbers because they've had to really ugly blowout losses. The that. It kinda cuts off counting. Once it gets up to total blood status. Offense is twenty third in the NBA. Not great defense is ninth. And they still project to for forty nine wins by five thirty eight which would put them fifth in the conference. You buy forty nine wins limb. I don't know. I mean, I I have no clue how to figure out the west this season. So I think the last couple of games have been a little bit more positive. I think their defense is really gotten back on track. Even though. They lost allies. I was really good defensive performance in the game against the kings was encouraging. So and this has been a rough opening stretch of the schedule. So I think yeah, I'd I'd take the over on that. If you you may be cheese. So we've got a couple of questions here from Becca moros, flop dot gif. Yeah, I'm a gift man deal with it. And also from DJ Bracken told me about potential trades for favors his overall value alien, do you think that they would look to move him? And be you know, what could they get for him? If anything I think given this the way this franchises worked the last couple years. I'd be very surprised if they traded him, and I don't think he has much value out there. I think is contract something like sixteen million this year and he easy fairly. He's a really strange player to me where I think it's pretty clear he's a five at this point. And he's been actually really efficient offensively. He's stretched out to be at least, you know, semi capable three point shooter. You could you could see him like actually developing it developing it into more of a weapon in the future. It's not there yet he shooting well for mid range, she's east finishing at the rim. Well, but lineups with him at center just aren't defending it all and that that's been the case for like two years. It's a one thirteen point six defensive rating with him at center this year. So I I don't know how much of a market there is a center that can score pretty efficiently as a roll man hit mid-range jumpers, but can't really anchor a good defense. I wear you guys out with him. What got that nonguarantee for next year late guaranteed date as well? So that makes them a little bit more movable, but the jazz aren't going to be interested in making trade where they take on long-term salary either a music valuable player for them a backup center. I think you're going to run into the same issues with him as there's who needs a Senator who sees him as a starting center. You know, I think he's more of an offensive five on the second unit. And we'll see him in his stock. His stock will go up if the jazz played better, right? Like, it's one of those things, right? Think is stock is down a little bit now because the jazz aren't looking as good as people thought at the beginning of the year, but you know, the near also the worst play the board you want to make a trade. So your assets can. Become undervalued there. So I don't see him especially just because you know, what team is going to treat for him thinking like, oh, man. This guy is really an especially when he gets there all the teams that drafted young centers this year, and those guys are generally playing pretty well. Yeah. It's tough to find a landing spot of four where do you want to go next? Well, can I just touch on one more thing there? I think the favors go bare lineups again a little bit too much criticism this year at the numbers aren't good offensively. They got ninety nine offense rating. But I think that's mostly because like Ricky Rubio and down the Mitchell have been terrible the start the season, just efficiency wise. So I think you saw last season that lineup can be effective is now in the playoffs that might struggle more. But it's it's not a tire fire or anything. So I I wouldn't sell high on them. But as far as next question, I'm interested. What you guys think on this is from Steve song? He asked thoughts on down of Mitchell's offensive inefficiency this year. And I guess I just wanna know like how concerned you guys are with how his play this year the expectations were just a little bit out of line for. Him. I expected him to take an incremental step forward. And if you look at the Evelyn of his stats, I mean, they're not much different than they were last year. You know, he's struggling from three twenty nine percent. He also started slow the first month last year. So you know, he hasn't been he hasn't taken some amazing leap yet of. But you know, he's finishing around the rim about the same as he was taking fewer shots or me. I think the biggest thing you might point to as he's taking more floaters and hitting fewer than he did a year ago. And he's basically traded shots at the rim for floaters. But I mean this team is shooting thirty two percent from three and they're missing a ton of wide open threes. So I think if they just start hitting more shots, and we saw the that begin a against the kings last night, or at least if not begin a the trend averted for at least one game. So yeah, I think I think he's fine. It's just you know, if he's if check back in two months of he's still hasn't taken a step forward. Then maybe you can be a little more concerned. I was going to bring up. The trading shots at the rim for floaters, which is is a concern. Also, his free throw attempt rate hasn't gone down yet. But some so that's actually something that I think is a positive because sometimes when you see those go together, then that's a guy being less aggressive. When I've watched Mitchell haven't really seen too much of that. And the shots not going into that affects things like this trait effects offense rating, of course, whether they're his shots or other people the jazz aren't hitting as many threes as we would like as well. So, yeah, I'm not super concerned at this point, and this'll be a common refrain from me on the rest of this podcast is people over using comparisons of a small sample size to a full season and thinking something s to he he has been worse clearly than last year. But every guy goes the rough edges, so as you said check back in two months because if this is just this is more in line with who he is this year, then we have a different conversation. But maybe it just happens with him. Just like it's for some players. It is that there were structured the season as the being, and so I I like to wait on that before making big pronouncements because there's no rush to it. What do we what is the benefit in west? We see something structural. And if we do you, and I will always say, well, the last thing on said a lot of nagging injuries. He also missed time in the summer after that foot injury that he suffered in the playoffs. So you know, he missed tonight's game. He's has to make soreness so that I think that could be a nagging issue as well. And he's only got six dunk so far this year after forty two last year, and we're almost a quarter of the way through the season. And we got about two minutes left here. So you want to just take two more an answer them a go for sure. So beca awhile. You ask that already Darcy Corbett asked his Rubio positive asset for the jazz. And I think the more interesting interpretation of that is what is Rubio's free agency value because I'd be very surprised if the jazz trade him, I think they view him is very important of the team. But I mean, I don't know he's an interesting guy. I think before the year if if he was a free agent this past off season, I think the jazz are ready to pay him because they were convinced that with the continuity of the system, you know, Rubio could finally. Get his shooting a little bit better. It was really hot towards the last season. And I think it's really disappointing for them this year to see kind of shooting stretch that he had that he's had. I think a lot of the offensive struggles. When Rubio is not willing to take a shot. And he's he's not a threat. I think it's kind of like a, you know, a cascading effect for the rest of the team where Mitchell's taking more shots ease not as efficient. And then there's a lot of turnovers where Rubio will just pass the ball away. And that'll hurt the defense. So I don't know I'm interested to see what he gets in free agency as far as the deal. I I don't know if a team would exactly invest him is starting point guard at this point. But he again, he might get a halo effect from having a hot finish to the season. Like usually does. So I don't know. That's interesting. Do you guys want to share anything and just real quickly? You could see him getting kind of Garrett Darren collison sort of deal like bridge point guard, you know, a couple years or on ten million maybes a nine guarantee on the second year, but he favors. I mean, like this is such an interesting year for the judge if they have a really good year, you could see them bringing back this core. If they don't you could see everyone. Except for bitchy will go bear an Ingles. Not really being a part of this going forward, at least among a they're mean guys are I think we're actually out of time here. So let's move on here to do the rest in alphabetical. Order develops Mavericks, Danny what are their fundamentals? The Dallas Mavericks are now nine and nine because they are five and one since last fifteen in sixty dare negative zero point one net rating puts them sixteenth in the NBA. They are fourteenth and offense sixteenth and defense and five day projects them to have thirty three wins. Which would put them thirteenth in the Western Conference. Who why don't we start with this question since I knew he did some research on it house, the Dennis Smith, Luca Danni, pairing been so far as Sean Dooley. It's been very good for Dennis Smith. And that that's a place to start with this something that I actually talked about this before the season that was something I wanted to see with this pairing was last year. Dennis Smith was really awful on on pull up threes. And he took a lot of them. And now he's doing all us, and he's also almost. Not playing at all without Luga. It's like three minutes a game or something crazy like that. And so now his proportion is he's playing more kind of like not an off ball point guard. But like more in that range more catch and shoot than pull up. And now, you know, he's gone from being a thirty one percent for three point shooter to a thirty nine percent three point shooter. And a lot of that is shooting bedroom Phillips and all that we don't know if it's going to continue. It's been good for him. Something that's interesting. Is that Dallas is offense has been meaningfully better. When dodgers plays without Smith when it plays with him, and we're dealing with sample size issues. Here we're still, you know, eighteen games that season for Dallas, and they play a lot together. But I think part of the reason there is that JJ is a better offense a player than than Smith right now. So I generally liked the idea of pairing anybody if you can do it without sacrificing other things pairing to ball handlers together, especially one guy maybe who's a little bit better off ball on one guy who's a little bit better on ball. But I'm not one hundred percent sure that Dennis Smith is that guy partially because of his size makes certain defenses difficult, but the concept of it. I. That you that? I haven't seen anything this year. That makes me say you can't do this. I just think they should be looking at more options than Justice. Yeah. And Smith, obviously, I mean, we're seeing Kimball Walker. I don't think Smith is gonna be is good as Walker but come Walker having his best season at age twenty nine and point guards generally peak later than other positions, and especially if they're short also fall off earlier than other positions. So it's far too early to say what Smith is going to be. But JJ beret is having unbelievable season me just some stats on him into dish into being great in the Anoff stuff by actually his box sets are not that great just been really good lately. He actually struggled at first. But he's got a really interesting sets twenty seven percent usage. Forty nine percent true shooting a ton of assist. Forty eight percent assist percentage. And they just you know bench unit. Always does really well with him a on the floor. Would you feel comfortable? Letting deandre Jordan leave and free agency and start mexic- liba next season asked Mike Stewart while you're number one Cleber is a restricted free agent. Of course, they can retain them. I don't expect that he's going to get an offer. They just are not interested in any also has a very very low capital should end up about two hundred thousand dollars above the minimum salary. So they can do all of their other cats base of and bring him back at a pretty good number. I think de'andre is a very good offense of center just due to his gravity. The fact that he can shoot free throws now helps tweet to shut a technical free. Throw the other day, but missed it up, but he's really bad defensively. At this point. There's been some reporting about how he's gonna viewed as selfish the the rebound stealing being a small indication of that he's quite statuesque defensively. At this point in time just could not get out on the floor or won't get on the floor any longer you certainly want to have other options. I mean, cleaver and Powell or both pre undersized. They might want to at least have one more guy who can bang a little bit. But yeah, I think I would feel pretty good about that. Especially considering Cleveland locale pulled assuming that they could find somewhere some other way to really load up on the wing if there's just value at the center position. Then maybe they do wanna go there. But no, I think Cleveland totally adequate and paying much for deandre Jordan going forward, especially if you're going to try and build around Smith and dungeon neither of whom project to be great defensive players at a minimum. I think you need it more of a stalwart defensive center out there. Right. And that's why I'm more confident the first part of that leading de'andre leader, then Cleveland, not the clue about player, but de'andre also doesn't fit in from age perspective this age thirty season. And while he has been durable insurability is an important thing. Because you want guys to be on the floor. I could see defense aging as he gets loses some of his physical advantages over time he's already lost a lot of that. And they can go in a lot of different directions defensively. And so one of the things I would look for in centers is just kind of going for different defensive archetypes. Like, do you want somebody who's a little bit? Switch ear. Do you want? Somebody who can be more of that just stand at the rim. And block block shots guy. They can go in different directions with that. But broadly speaking, I think money is better spent at positions other than center, so because there's so much value there and Dallas isn't a center away. And those are the teams that should suspend on it. But there aren't that many teams that are there now at or will be really at any point over the next couple of years. And this is what I thought was interesting from any mature should the Mavericks get in on the porter or Bill sweepstakes. And the reason I think this is fascinating. From Dallas perspective is this idea of how valuable is their cap space said Dallas could clear money in twenty nineteen twenty twenty or both depending on what happens with Harrison Barnes and a few other factors. Beal is a really compelling fit for me with Luca because he can play on and off and Bill. I think the Moore's a tube. You can kind of bounce around with some of the positional stuff there, and he can shoot. Obviously, that's a strength of is. But also, I think he showed when wall was out that Bill can be a better playmaker than maybe the wizards of asked him to be for the most part that also might be causing fear. I'm theorizing this might be causing some friction in India. Right now. So I would consider that porter is more of a fallback type of option because he already makes a ton of money, and he can't I don't think scaling up his role. We'll do him favors that it might do for Bentley deal. So I would consider it with the. But the big difference. Also is yeah, you're getting a player who might be better than what they could what they will do with their cap space in two thousand nineteen but you also presumably have to give a bass. Now, if they could get Bradley Beal for a limited return. Yeah. Absolutely. I mean, I think you'd be a good fit for them. And better than the guys they could get. But if they have to give up, you know, significant assets to make that happen because that's where the market is. I wouldn't do that with where they are. Right. The fire part again there. They don't have their own first-round pick this year, pro- probably. So I'm not really sure what they could give up though, it'd be appealing to Washington they realistically one. I don't think this Smith would be enough to get it done. You know, maybe if they moved wall as well that could be more instruments on that. But I don't know Smith has that type of value yet aren't that'll do? For the Mavs. Let's move on to the nuggets actually saw them in person on Monday in Milwaukee. Thank you seek. I was very impressed with their defense in that game. A thought that Yokich. Although again, you know, he remains limited at the highest levels. He has had a lot more in terms of multiple efforts this year. I think that's been the biggest difference with him. He's always had pretty good intelligence, but he's actually getting out on the floor. You know, making plays around the room. There's a one those highlighted by Harrison wind on Twitter, which was very impressive in person where he got out to assure us guarding Lopez a lot of the time, and then was able to get back and make a stop at the rim. Their net rating is third in the NBA plus seven point two got up to Ethan offense after a slow start and the defenses fourth. I mean that is a very strong combination. They project four fifty two wins with Trevi third in the Western Conference. Where do you wanna start here? In terms of question only, have one from Zora, Neale, Thurston, solid. The solid author reference. Do you think Jamal Murray has stalled this year this is going to sound similar to Donovan Mitchell? But my answer is not yet because the biggest difference between joe-marie offensively. I think he's been better defensively as well. Not not as pronounced the differences Yokich. But I do think he's competing more on nine end that he was before is that history is not going in. I mean thirty one percent this year thirty eight percent last year and his proportion has actually dropped pretty significantly which is notable for now. We'll see if that continues. He's also getting to the line a little bit less than not making as many shots at the rim. But when I watched Murray, I don't see a player who is fundamentally different in a negative way. From last year. It's just that the shot is been falling. And so if he's a thirty four thirty five percent shooter and last year was an aberration. Then. Yeah. That might be I wouldn't even say that stalled it's just it's just a different calibration of what he has. But I still think there's there's a lot there. And that he hasn't performed up to what I expect him to do the rest of the season. So I wouldn't call that stalling especially when he's been better defensive. -vely in the team is still kind of figuring out how they want to max Mayes the combination of of marine Yokich, and there's an adjustment period for both those guys, and I think you could just done well as a facilitator, but it can be hard. And I mean Murray has the highest assist rate of his grip. Yeah. I mean, he did up the forty eight point game as well. I mean just watching him you not looking at the stats. It seems that he's actually made progress to me I think he's showed more of an ability to get his own shot in isolation. He's flashed more moves. And obviously you mentioned the defense as well finishing at the rim is down a little bit. But I think that a lot of that has to do with the fact that they just don't have as much spacing this year. You know, they've been playing guys like Craig and Millsap a fair amount of time it pull bills ups gotten to the point where he's not really a positive offense a player except in certain situations with his hands when he has a mismatch. But he's not helping them space the floor. You know in Rover. He missed so much time last year and didn't play a ton when he was back. But so you have the three point shooting improve. You don't make much of the finishing at the rim. I don't you know, he doesn't look worse on those plays to me. So no, I think he's doing just fine. He looks like just watching him a better player, and you know, same as Mitchell if two months from now, he's still not shooting it. Well, that's a concern in there was hope that you also remember too that he starts every year shooting terrible for the first month of the season. So I don't know if there's any tend to be made of that or not I'll take this one real quickly. Eric are fa asked what should the nuggets lati- rotation? Look like when his house will Barton return Torrey Craig out of there. I'd like to still see Juancho play. I think though, maybe he could take trae Lyle's spot in the rotation. I liked him better as a shooter and a defender than Lyles that probably brings you back to having will Barton in a again, I think will be interesting to see whether he comes back in your Murray. Now is playing kind of the primary creator on the second unit alongside Morris that that used to. Barton's job so abusing the see what they wanna do there. As far as playing those two guys together. A or not on the second unit, which has been very effective this year. I think you probably stick with that unit since it's been good and just have Barton tried to juice, the offense of the starters a little bit he'll burden could also be an interesting trae candidate potentially as well to a team that just needs miscast as three so to just to maybe see if there's another team that would be interested in him and to see if they could get back more of a wing guy, but that's always difficult Detroit. Small for big when it comes to wings, and then Isaiah I don't I frankly, don't expect to be a contributor for the Monday Morris has been so good. They've gotten good production on the second unit already with Murray Murray is better than Thomas maybe by like Isaiah is going to have to get back to being offensive -ly what he was two years ago, or at least someone close to that like the player that he was last season. Which is what I'm expecting after missing another nine months with hip surgery, which. Like what it's going to be a player really helps them much to be honest. He can function. Really? I mean, obviously if he plays well enough to to jump somebody in the rotation, then then you'd have that conversation, but he also works as a nice injury or a foul. Trouble replacement for Morris for Murray, you know, you can do a lot with having another person for when things go wrong because things always do at various points during the season. And so having is as out there. I've I'm not going to answer this as a question, but I've been when I'm watching the nuggets this year, especially with with the role that Millsap is played in their defense. I've wondered a little bit about if Michael porter can be healthy for them not this year. But you know, moving forward what Israel is going to be and it's probably going to be in the abstract for this year. But just the idea of having another super talented guy, especially with his offensive gifts on this team, which is fascinating couple quick questions. Here a month Morris, Ben Jenkins and Jan or Yang. I'm not sure a Studebaker asking about Morris's play 'em. You know, I think he's he's been a revelation for them. He's not gonna. Continue to shoot forty three percent from downtown. He's not really a guy was a ton of pressure on the rim. But he's a great decision maker never turns the ballroom. That's amazing that he's averaging zero point eight turnovers for thirty six minutes and six point one assists. A, but you know, he's actually address many more assist than Murray. Ios. I was critical of bologna when I thought I didn't realize that it was disciplinary at the time of thankfully, my tweet. I put that caveat in. But I was like why are you starting Morris over Murray they'd lost a few rows? Like, oh is this like is? He actually doing this because he thinks it gives them the best chance to win never want. I don't think it gives them the best chance to win. But number two, you know, Monday more is a nice backup point guard. He's not going to move beyond that, maybe he could be, you know, the twenty fifth best point guard in the NBA like as a franchise it's important or ever your three key guys here. Yokich Harrison at brewery in those guys are, you know, twenty three or under basically so Harrison twenty four this season. So you're not getting to where you want to be as a franchise unless you're gonna actualize. Is Jamal Murray. And so, you know, if there if there are people who think that Moore should start over him. I agree that he gives them the best chance to win them me. I think there's an argument that oh, you poor pure point guard can run pick and roll, blah, blah. But you still got Nicole Yokich there. They have a lot of other moving pieces like Morris for good. If real is going to have the ball in his hands or need to more than a lot of these guys. And again, you know, I don't his three point shooting volume. It's a nice step forward for him in theory. But I don't think he's going to continue to shoot as well as he has a and the volume there is not enormous either arts we get to Golden State here. Yeah. Let's do it. The warriors are fourteen in seven three and four since last fifteen sixty plus seven net rating has them fourth. Second offense. Twelfth defense five thirty projects them to win sixty games which would be number one in the west, and they have retaken number one in the overall MBA from Toronto who had it for two time when the warriors had that four game losing streak in a number. I want to start with before we get into the questions. So something you, and I've talked about I think you've mentioned this on Twitter that the warriors. Turn into the Golden State mid Rangers. When Steph curry. Mid range, mid range, yours sorry, and the stats totally bear that out. So this season when Steph curry is on the floor the warriors take about one fifth of their shots. Twenty one percent from mid range making forty five percent, which is very good. When Steph curry is off the floor that twenty one percent goes up to thirty two percent of their other touts outside the paint. Right. It's the long twos outside the range. Yeah. Yeah. So that's that's the paint. Yeah. That's I I use the the chart that I think it's the NBA dot com. Actually, I think it's just the way they define it because I was doing with without player in one of the filters. They have. And when that change that's ten percent of their shots that go into mid range when he's not playing half of those shots about come from the restricted area. Obviously less efficient, even though the words they're shooting. Fifty one percent on mid-rangers Dockery still less efficient there. And then the other have come from three. And that part makes a lot more sense because curry is one of about four guys on this team that can actually make three pointers. So when you pull the shots out. And that is a big part of why their offense has struggled beyond the fact that they don't really have. Steph curry replacement as a creator as well. And you know, it is a fundamentally different team. And there are a couple of different questions that get along to this point and j bankers if do the warriors need to make some changes or should they wait for Steph to come back and as long as Steph curry is going to be back for the playoffs. And obviously with this injury has but that was more of a case last year. Then you don't have to worry about this much Steph. Curry is the system, and maybe you have contingency plans. But every team is going to look different without their star is going to be less effective without their star. And it's a lot to basically say it is one of the things that's easier in a video game or easier in the abstract than in real life to say. Oh, yeah. When Steph curry is not available. We're going to completely change our offense. Like, that's not something that teams can do schematically very often because it requires so much players, maybe they can take different burdens. And that's kind of what the words of looked like the last couple of games then goal. So they've started playing more guys who can shoot now Geragos taking a larger role. I mean, they've even brought Steph Curry's brother brother-in-law, Damian Lee. I can remember the brother-in-law future. In law. But Lee, you know, his one real talented is shooting. He's not really at NBA quality athlete, but he'll at least bomb it when he's opened. So just getting a few more guys out there who will take threes. I think is opening up. They've actually had some nice offensive performances. Their last two games home wins against Portland and Sacramento. You can take this one really quickly if Katie or Klay leaves the summer does that expand the warriors options for keeping cousins as Bill Eisenstein. I have a piece in even more detail in this coming out at the the ethnic dot com slash cap space in the next few days dealer is broadly. No, technically speaking, if both of them left, they would have cap space to offer more than non bird, but really not not significantly. So DeMarcus cousins should be treated as a one year experiment. And if those guys left the where you should be using their cap space, this kind of one of the feces of the peace if the warriors did lose. But those guys they would be better spent there'd be wiser to use their cap face on primitive players than DeMarcus cousins because that's what they'd be replacing a curry. Dray pick and pop updated valuation of Golden State's non-stars, given their increased roles recently. I think you know, what you're getting with the most of these vets you just hope they hang onto it. So really at dick. We're talking about Quinn cook. Here you want to start with him just like twenty-six hook. Yeah. I be defensively when he put him against starters. He gets attacked a lot. I mean, he's just small and he's not he's not great. There buddy healed actually had some really nice possession on him. And then offense. He's aggressive with the shot. Not a great creator. Some more of a a second unit guy at you know, in making second unit money's fine. He's a limited passer Dicky's started to try to get a little more aggressive with three pointer, particularly in the Portland game, which he's a good three pointer over forty percent of the key. He needs to do that not going to get to the rim at all and against good defensively. Geese struggles doing so I'm get blocked a couple of times in the Documenta game on jumpers, which is never a great side for guy. But no, I think he's he's valuable in the sense that he can replace stuff gory. Don't think he has a huge role wants curry returns. Kevon looney. I I've been actually impressed with his progress as a finisher the season. He's also had a little bit more verve making decisions to attack the rim. So I think he's looked like more of a a quality player doesn't have a ton of upside. But at least, you know, he's not missing way ups the the way we saw from did of a big misset in that clippers game Affonso McKinney. We haven't seen it all he's been out about Damian Jones ferry offensively limited. I mean, he did have a couple of drives to the basket in the Sacramento game because the kings were largely doubling on pick and rolls. And so that was giving him that option? I didn't know he had any of that in his game. I'm not sure he does it gets better defenses and defensively. He is just not a good plan right now. He's recognition isn't great. He doesn't get the right spots. And so he is the third best healthy center true center on the warriors. I mean, he's obviously worse than Draymond as well. And for whatever reason the warriors choose to prioritize developing him over Jordan bell, even though those guys are six months apart in age and have similar contracts structures. Nobel is technically an risk. Free agent when you're actually asked Kerr about why it is a Jones is starting and he was what he had to say coach is your process of dividing up the Centerman it's been affected by the inevitability that DeMarcus cousins is going to come in at some point. But you don't know exactly when I don't really factor in in. We're we're what we're doing right now is going with certain matchups while we're trying to develop Damian I feel more comfortable with with loon and Jordan just because they've been here and they've got experience played in the finals they've played played enough in this league to really have a good feel and Damian you can tell us up and down. He's done some good things and he struggled, but we we're not gonna just take him out of the lineup. We want to continue to give him minutes into help him grow and help him learn, and so the process is really about you know, giving giving him an opportunity to grow and keeping the other guys invested in. And active and try to win games. So trying to do it all at once. Jordan bell looked tentative offensively at times. You know, the Yeltsin finished quite as well around the rim as he did last year. But I think overall he's by far the best offensive player of those three is he runs the floor more. You know, the that's one he makes better quicker decisions by far the best passer of those three as well. And then defensively a thought he's looked really good moving his feet. It's getting better at knowing player tendencies as well. I think he's looked like the best. Switch guy though. Surprisingly looney outplayed him in that regard in the Houston series last year. But he's looked really good. You know, again, those so much of this is what these guys all going to look like in the playoffs like Geragos another guy really wanna talk about it in that much because just like with the jazz. He's just so bad individual defensive. I think against the best teams that he's going to struggle. A and won't be playing by the end of the series. We got thirty seconds left to do one more. Sure. Do the last few weeks? Make you question. Whether Steve Kerr is the top tier coaching league from MC Lopez Caparo. No because he built an offense around Steph curry that the prior coach did not, and it would take a lot of coaches couldn't do that in the first place and because curse weaknesses is a coach are more obvious in certain ways to people in it becomes easier. To forget the positives that make those negatives more important, and you know, overplaying guys like Damian Jones and interest in version, those are much smaller problems than keeping stars happy building a culture where guys you know, guys like Klay Thompson Draymond green can be happy not taking as many shots. Those are bigger coaching things having the guys compete defensively when they have to being resting guys. Those things are more important for a good coach than knowing how to run the offense. When your best players are and stuff. We'll be back shortly. A ultimately what they go when with stuff and Draymond out three and four essentially. So, you know with four those rogue games, that's not bad or maybe it was three and five. So I think he's. Made some adjustments now to get some guys who maybe aren't as heralded but provide a little bit more shooting into the lineup. And no, I mean, the guys went through the last four championships and built this system. So no, I'm not going to question it based on the fact that they lost four games. All right. Let's move on to the Houston Rockets. A relative dearth of question here is for the now nine hundred nine Houston Rockets four to since last fifteen in sixty negative one point zero net rating still is the eighteenth. It seemed as if they had righted the ship in the lost a couple of games in Cleveland without Chris Paul and a close one in Detroit. So they are backed down at five hundred again up to eleventh and offense. They'd had a pretty good run offensively until these last couple of games. Twentieth. Defense they project for fifty wins, which would be fourth in the conference per find thirty eight where do you wanna start here on a start with a question from Renee Cantu is the and the quotes around this rocket struggled because they lost a reason and. Quotes narrative overblown. My answer is yes. And no, I think they miss having somebody like Trevor Aretha more than they miss Trevor reasons specifically, but I also think that his contributions for all of last season before the last two games of the conference finals are really underappreciated in certain corners. Just having a competent defender who can take and make threes. The teams have to defend out there really did help make the rockets off and saying it was kind of like how they've missed the natives year of just a baseline of competence that is sometimes hard to get you know, right now, they're using Hartenstein in that role and then various different amid the misadventures with Carmelo Anthony early in the season. Gary carp has been far better than I ever would have been disputed, but still he's not Trevor Ariza. So that is a challenge for them. I broadly been pretty happy with what James Ennis has done. I do want to watch more film on him defensively later on later on the year. I, you know, just because the sample I see of them you never you never know for sure if that's Representative but just having competent forwards. I mean, we talked about how whether it was due to ownership not wanting to pay a steep electric Bill. That's. Really what it was or jerem Maury believing in his ability to unearth diamonds in the rough at the wing position that they were making a pretty big bet and they've done better. I think on that bet then maybe I anticipated, but they still could use a reason Imbaba multi they're just baseline competence this year NS five point two three point attempts per thirty six minutes this year last year areso seven point three Anna, resulting more difficult as we've seen a couple of times NS Astrid to really bomb. Somebody's got a little hitch in his shot. It doesn't look comfortable there. Reza was just so comfortable in this Houston system having been there for four years and both offense. Really he probably provides a little bit more off the dribble as well. Maybe a little bit better one on one defender against bigger wings. So, you know, I think a reason just a slight upgrade what they got from him. Last year is a slight upgrade over innocent. Remember also that they're missing about mood say who who provided them with a lot of competence. I mean, and if you just look at some of the stats, I think. NS has the worst net rating of any of their rotation players right now, you know, he missed the time with that hamstring. He looked to still be struggling with it. Even a couple of games after he came back. But they've got Michael Carter Williams out of the lineup. Now, they got Carmelo of the lineup getting something. Good from Gary Clark. Joe Greene is back Hartenstein seventeen point eight that rating amazingly enough you I'm not sure how much he has to do with that other than getting a lot of offensive rebounds. So I think it's really more about just what you're saying is like just having enough quality players like that's one, you know, just having kind of these guys who are not quite they're not quite versed in the system. You don't have to quite respect them defensively as a switch guy or shooting the three. And then, you know, whether you want to say James harden, Chris Paul played worse. It's just so many factors. I think that Aretha is, you know, the loss of him with is, you know, maybe twenty percent of what's gonna next question wouldn't go. Chris Davis can the rockets climb back into the top three the west. I will go a step further and say, I expect I'm not saying it's a guarantee, but they're not far behind in the loss column. I mean, so they're three behind the clippers to behind the nuggets and under in the loss column. I think they are a better basketball team than those squads. They also have dealt with with injuries. All those teams have obviously I mean. Okay. So he's still missing Roberson. But I think they're better and we're only twenty games in season for most of these teams. So I will I will pick the team that I think will be better over the remaining sixty over a two game lead. And the rockets. I mean, I I still think a lot of is there. And while I did concerns I have about them in the playoffs are largely still there. And we'll have to see what happens in the biomarker actually relates to another question. We have on them. I think that in the regular season. They're they're fine. And they they have so much talent and their scheme. It will lead them to be a really good offense team. Even if they're not historic like last year. So yeah, I expected I agree with you. And you know, if there are another team on pace for over fifty five wins besides Golden State, which I expect to get back to that level once curry returns, then I might. Be a little more skeptical, but I actually would probably give Houston the best chance of getting the two seat of any team outside gold sate who's in that battle though. I don't feel confident about that. I think they're five teams that might end up with the two seat next question here. Best realistic trade target for the rockets. I don't have a specific person in mind, but I wanted to convey general idea here, and that is that it is very hard for Houston to make a big trade because of how their money is structured. I mean, there are three most expensive players are hardened pollen. Cappella those guys are going absolutely nowhere. Then you have air, Gordon, who I think they wanna keep PJ Tucker who I know they want to keep and Brandon Knight who nobody wants. So it gets hard to make a lot of these deals. That's why I think Houston is a much better buyout destination than trade team because. Yeah, maybe they could use guys like Markey's, Chris maybe mellow once we get to December fifteenth things like that. But even then you're looking more like a five to seven million dollar player. That's a lot harder to find. So my expectation would be that. Guys will leave money on the table and say, hey, I can go to Houston. I might be able to get reliable rotation minutes. That's better path for them than a trade because especially Brandon Knight just makes so much money. Yeah. And you can argue that perhaps. That's why Minnesota was not interested in the four first round picks offer. Because some of those first round picks are just the price of having to absorb night salary now night expires in the summer of twenty twenty. So maybe the path is you can't bays more someone who's been mentioned. He's actually out of the starting lineup now in Atlanta. He doesn't quite have the ideal size. You would want as a switch guy. Does have pretty good length? But maybe one of Houston's version of the fact that they're struggling might actually make those picks a little more attractive, and you might say, okay. We'll go up a first to get Kent bays more you take back Brandon Knight. And we're paying that. I for the difference in quality a player between bays more night. They make relatively similar money as more makes a little bit more. So maybe Chris with us to be included in that deal as well because they will not be interested in adding much salary in a deal like that. I would imagine. Okay. We're gonna get to the clippers the west leading Los Angeles Clippers after this from simple context. I am lucky. I've never needed contacts. But my wife definitely does. And they really have been a for her for a long time that quite dependent for existence, but definitely just a regular bane to have to go in renew. Your prescription at the doctor's office that cost a ton. Go to the store buy your contacts. 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Twenty DNC twenty or enter code dunk twenty at checkout to get twenty dollars off your contacts. I wanted the fundamentals on the clippers they are thirteen and six five and one since last time we did this include. A win on Sunday against the Portland trailblazers in Portland. They are seven to net rating sixth in offense thirteenth and defense and five thirty projects them to finish with forty three wins, which would be ninth in the Western Conference. Yeah. And their three point shooting against the has normalized quite a bit thirty four percent, which is a normal range now. So some of the reasons that we thought their defense would regress, you know. It's really it's been okay, it's gone down a little bit. But their offense, obviously has been outstanding big win on the road in Portland tonight. And this is one that we could start with here was the largest contract for Tobias Harris, the clippers should be comfortable with the summer. And I think question number one is do you wanna make him one of your two big pieces. Right. They should have double max room this summer. And if you bring him back, he's basically one of your two big pieces that you're bringing the way he's played this season. So far, you're you worry a little bit about paying for a at the top. But he's taken a step forward. Each Susani up to admire the way that is improved since coming into the league. And it's pretty remarkable really how he's essentially been traded for nothing twice in his career before the Griffin Trey got traded for JJ Rettig a half season JJ Radic third season JJ Radic when he was younger, and then just got essentially dumped from the magic to the pistons in two thousand fifteen sixteen but I think just didn't innovate ume. He strikes me as kind of you know, twenty five million dollar a year player. Does that seem right to buy son? How he's played this season, Danny? Yeah. That seems about right? I mean forwards are incredibly valuable around the league right now, while Tobias Harris, isn't, you know, a wing stopper. He can provide offense evalu- at the four. And then defensively I think the more as a secondary guy on the wing, and so you compare him with a lot of different ten players mesh pretty well with Denault again Nari who has been an important part of their success here. And while it has been a meandering journey for Harris. This is his age twenty six season. So we should still. Be seeing a little bit of growth from him. I'm interested in where where his game goes. This might be a pretty close to speak at me right now. You know, he's been in. You know, sixteen seventeen PR range the last couple of years he's above that right now. But against multiple sides of that so for the type of player he's been over the last couple of years twenty five million is about right his cap, hold which matters in certain circumstances for the clippers is about twenty two million. And so they could maybe they could make their third piece, you know, making run fifteen million if they wanted to then coal him, and then exceed the cap to sign him yet, or they could, you know, try to move on from gala Nari who will then be expiring contract clear little bit more. They could go on a lot of different directions clippers have so little locked in salary that they can go in those directions. And so two challenges. They're doing it all at the same time. You know, they'll be having all those negotiations in. So I think Harris meshes with a lot of what they do see that twenty five million range. I I would say that's more where I would have his average value than his starting salary that can change depending on how the deal is. Structure, but you know, if it's twenty five and then when you're talking in his early thirties, you're getting closer to thirty thirty one million that probably a little bit rich to me. But if you had it at a flat twenty five or however, you want to structure at that probably began with full bird writes, the using cats basis, your they could start at higher, and then decline it potentially as well making him a little bit better of a trade possibility mean a lot of it just comes down to what what are you doing? If you're going to sign him. Right. I mean, if you get quiet Leonard, and then he's kind of the best you can do after that yet. Dig you bring him back. I think you try to know twenty twenty doesn't have the star power that this free agent market. Does if he's the best guy can get any got Leonard. Yeah. You feel pretty good. If he Tobias Harris is the best guy. You can get then you wonder, okay? Where are we really going with this? You know with him as our highest played player as our best player. How do you get much better at this point and so much? Of course depends on how the end the season as well. You know, if they make the playoffs they get. Get to the second round Rodney that's impossible to know where these guys are gonna end up I expect they're going to come back to earth, but they're having a wonderful season so far. So next question here. Could you see mantras Herrell eventually starting the five? I can't just because for whatever reason he's undersized and duckers doesn't wanna do that. Also just a way to nominally keep more margin. Cortott engaged is. Oh, you're starting even though you're getting the Keith bogans. But I would love to see him start at the five. I think he would have a huge matchup advantage against the a lot of these senators right out of the gate, and then you also run into the problem with both he and Lou Williams of when you get him rest. If you want him to close the game, and they're just limited in the number of minutes that they can play. So I mean, I think you need to have him out there as much as possible. He's been also we got a couple of different questions about what the clippers could do. In terms of proactively trading for player. Now, Bradley Beal got mentioned a couple of times Kemba Walker got mentioned as well. And who is a very different just because one is under contract and one is not there's a big risk and trading for Kemba Walker that he just leaves unless you have some. Sort of understanding and Beal is fascinating to me for them specifically because you know, pay committing to sang right now. Okay. Well, you know, we have all this flexibility. But we're gonna pray paint, Bradley Beal twenty seven point one million next year. They would still have the ability to add Amax guy, you know, of kind of the Colli tier? I don't think they could get you. In that deal than it. Maybe it gets more palatable. But so again, like we talked about with the Mets is shading to be in that deal. I actually would consider doing that. But you know, they obviously are extremely high on him in Jerome Robinson hasn't played all he's probably suffering from driving the new car off the lot syndrome at this point. They've got that twenty nineteen pick that if they make the playoffs goes to Boston. So there who'll encumbered they're so hard to imagine that they could come up with the best offer for Bradley Beal, who is more trade value Avery, Bradley, or Courtney lead any I mean, it's pretty clearly Avery Bradley because his contract is so much more favorable. So for those who are unfamiliar with the difference Courtney lease twenty nineteen twenty contract is fully guaranteed while Avery Bradley's is only partially guaranteed for two million until the offseason. So just on those grounds. I mean, you'd rather have Avery you'd rather have Avery Bradley on his deal and Cornelis miss this whole season. Do that kind of neck ailment is how it's been described. Most recently. So I mean while I don't Bradley's kind of disappointed a little bit this year. I don't I'm just not exactly sure how his game is going to age over the next couple years that difference in contract for me is even if Lee was healthy. I think that would be more significant than the difference in player quality less one best record at the end of the season clippers grizzlies or blazers. I'll go blazers. I ain't they have the best player. I think they have the best track record of being good with this group. So I would go blazers they also track record or staying healthy with their key players, which is extremely important. I mean, that's something which talked about briefly with LA you, and I both really liked him at full strength. Do you like them more at less than full strength than I did? And that's why you were you went over there over and you're looking very good on. I mean, they harass or if I Gallo, right? And I just didn't wanna bet on Danilo Gallinari is health. And so we still don't know where you know, a a fourth of the way into the season. So where they go if Luke Kuhn still think has got a replacement for them. Yeah. I mean, their offense would take a hit. Then I mean, this to me still is more of an offensive team. But they bend. You know, they've been middle of the road in defense. Overall. Now in middle of the road is definitely good enough considering how strong their often spent the Lakers are eleven and eight four and two both losses to the Orlando Magic. They really struggled to deal with Nicola vuckovich. I I watched that game today and when vote-rich was on the floor. I think he was plus seventeen and every pick and roll the pick and pop was killing them if they switched it was getting into the post and obviously at a fabulous game. He's having a fabulous season. I think he's actually a most improved player candidate right now. Although most people won't see it that way because he was probably overrated before this year. But as long as they're not playing the magic they've looked pretty good plus one point four net reading thirteenth in the NBA the thirteenth ranked offense which is a little bit of a disappointment. But up to ten th now in defense. Interestingly enough, I question would you trade Kouzmin and Ingram for Beal? No for a couple of different reasons. The biggest one being. That if you take that money off the board because those trade players are straightening out cost a lot more than the player you're bringing in for next year not as much for this year. Then you're basically committing to Bill as the other guy next to LeBron. And while I like, Bradley Beal, they can aim their sights higher, even if they end up not getting those guys, I still think the Lakers in particular have the incentive to say, hey, we should try for Katie try for quiet, Leonard. And if we don't get them, we'll see where we go. And then you get into the realm of where Bradley Beal could be a pretty decent option there. But they have to swing high. And then also you're losing those guys in a deal for the addition as opposed to getting somebody else, and then trading those guys to get maybe somebody who's more in line with the LeBron James time on any signs at Josh heart will replace Kouzmin the starting lineup not really I mean heart. He's been on the shelf intermittently with his ankle issue. But he didn't play much tonight actually Casey p was the one who played a ton at a really nice defensive game with five steals. Although offensively it. Was a struggle for me missed a couple of wide open threes setup in the last couple of minutes when the Lakers roared back to tie it. So no, I don't see that happening anytime soon. How much credit does Tyson Chandler deserve for the leakers. A recent improve stretch. It deserves a decent amount of the credit. I mean, they've done so much better playing with true Biggs a lot of that is on the defensive end just because the idea of LeBron James being the quote unquote center. However, you wanted to find terms there, those lineups could defend it all and they they weren't as dominant offensively than hoped which again negate some of the benefits and the other big part of getting Tyson Chandler is that he replaced a lot of really negative minutes in their own tation. Like, they were trying all these other things and so- Chandler does deserve credit for being meaningfully better than those guys. I beat that that's important. And also getting Luke Walton into lineups that made more sense and camera. I think is played. Well, I have skepticism that this will carry over into the playoffs. Not that. I think that has to be the goal of signing Tyson. Channel or in the first place, but it is worth considering. And this is something Kevin pelton talked about in his piece is something. I think both of us discussed on the pod when he signed is whether the Lakers feel that having Tyson Chandler, especially since it's going so well is going to prevent them for making a different move with roster spots, depending on who's available now, I don't know who that's going to be. But if they go we're not going to sign player x not because of money, but because we don't want to cut somebody like Tyson Chandler that is an understated opportunity cost. Even if he's been a part of them doing so. Well, yeah. And chandler. I think his offense of limitations are undersold is great offensive rebounder. But he's not a good finisher anymore. He can't get up for those the way used to end while he McGee different players Chandler skews a little more towards deepens. I think he he's slowed down certainly defensively. Now at age thirty six I believe, and I agree with you. I think they need someone a little bit more versatile to man that spot right now. Maybe you could see LeBron at center and. Ingram at the foreign get coups moth the floor. You're that's the that coups massage so limited as a help defender any good on the perimeter either that maybe you can just get enough. Good defenders on the floor that that LeBrun. It's under could work a little bit more. And LeBron you know is just not there as a regular season Perry guarded Yokich. Okay. Failed trying to guard vuckovich they went to that. As a way to join guard, which Vichit and LeBron committed a foul and then got spun by for a dunk with a minimal effort. So yeah, I do think they need a more versatile options. Should they get into the playoffs? Here. This is the last year. Lebron makes the all NBA first team. He's playing very well again, especially offensively. I would have to say probably just because I mean, there's so many good forwards the I mean, you still got K D you've got Janas you've got quite a he might not even make it this year. Frankly mean we'll see where the Lakers end up. You know, the Lakers don't make the playoffs God forbid, or, you know, or the eighth seed or the seven seat or something, you know, maybe you just makes on reputation, but you know, there's a lot of competition for that. I seem Olympia and the next year. I think I don't know. If he's going to deserve it again, especially based on his regular season play. But if they get another star, and they rolled a fifty five sixty wins or something like that. You know, I think he's more likely to get it in that situation. N remember, of course, all NBA is a regular season award. It is an Thurs just as you said so much competition, even though Anthony Davis is probably going to be center at least this year, probably moving forward and that takes away one guy. I mean, I think Anthony Davis has a real good chance of having a better season. Lebron james. So if he's countered as a five then that goes there how about this one. Oh, yeah. Yeah. I know you talk. From that guy. Dave if only one of Lonzo or Ingram could get to ninety percent of their ceiling by next year, which I fall is not going to happen. But if it were which would be best for the Lakers. And I guess that depends on whether how much shooting is involved. I mean wanted is obviously his percentages are much better right now. I don't fully trust him there yet. But I'm actually going to Saint Brandon Ingram just because it's harder to find players like ninety percent of his ceiling. Brandon Ingram than it is to find a ninety percent Lonzo ball as much as with you have when you have LeBron James. And if they didn't have LeBron then having somebody who can handle the ball can find guys everything else would be more important, but Ingram long intriguing with the ball in his hands jump shot is still goes in even though he doesn't shoot enough. I think that would be one of the big parts that would improve. If he got to ninety percent of the ceiling. So I would say Ingram even though I still prefer ones. It was a basketball player. This question makes basically makes it an assumption. That makes Ingram more when you say jump shot. You mean three point jump shot? He he takes. Plenty of long twos yet this. Yeah. That's exactly what I mean. Like him being willing to stay in the corner. Staying in the corner and draining though shots, let's go to or even even above the break or or, but I mean to me really the biggest part in fulfilling his his potential is on the defense about especially as a help defender. I mean, he just his mccrindle blocking shots. He's gotta make more plays at the rim. You know, we haven't really seen that much from him. Especially in this game. You know, part of how you can deal with a guy like vuckovich is to have good help defenders crashing down from the wings. And he really was not able to make an impact in that role. Okay. Let's move to the grizzlies as Dan Patrick used to call him twelve and seven five and two despite a rough loss to the next. They've had a difficult schedule. Lately, though, I'm loath to blame that as we don't really know that that's what it is. When when teams lose it in the midst of a differ, difficult, schedule two point seven net rating is ninth in the NBA. The sport the twenty fifth ranked off. Offense and still the second ranked defense they project for forty wins. So that projection has improved significantly since the start of the season. We're going to start with some questions on these guys all we could start with one from one Kirk Goltz berry, which was who will have a better record, Memphis or Utah, and as a point of reference here Memphis is currently four games ahead of Utah in the wind. Call sorry in the loss. Call lost comes what you look at for for good teams, and that ITO Utah one on Sunday and Memphis loss, you think that it was five before today's events again, we're still so early in the season and Memphis is very health dependent on. I mean as Gerry Jackson has been awesome. So maybe they're a little bit less Kosovo health dependent than they were over the last couple of years. But as well as Sheldon McAfee laid the they're getting their ass Alcon without a soul on the floor. Still and when Jackson plays by himself, and it sure center. Yeah. And Conley fouling out of the clippers game was definitive kitted point. You know, they couldn't they had the lead. I think they're up seven with a couple of minutes to go. And they. Couldn't get a bucket and not all of that is Mike Conley being out, but it certainly didn't help and I think Utah's a better team. This is a much cooler question than it would have been at basically any point in the year. Now that I'm a little bit less. Hold on Utah figuring this out. But at this point, I'm still going to go with the team that I think is better when the margin is four losses. I think that's enough for them to make it up, especially because as deep as Memphis. I think Utah has more functional depth. They can withstand injuries a little bit better. Yeah. Maybe that's so although, you know, Mitchell and Gobert of the greatest health record, obviously, they really struggle when he's out Mitchell has been nicked up a, but yeah, I'm inclined to agree with you. I still like Utah a little bit better. I believe in their coaching a little bit more. I believe in their health little bit more. So yeah, I would go with Utah. But you know, it's interesting that this is even a question here a related question. Memphis, ends the season as the blank seed as Sean results. Wow. I've did the west is so bunched up, right? Now. And I think I'm a little bit more Rosie on Memphis than five thirty as projection was, you know, personally season. But also now because that's a big factor in their calculus. I'm going to say they win I forty three games. And so if I'm going to guess where forty three puts any team in the west, I think the most likely outcome there as ninth. But I mean, it could be anywhere right in that range. I think it's more likely than not that they don't make the playoffs. But I still give him, you know, a decent chance of it at this point. But I mean, I I really just if we're saying the jazz level better record than them. Although again, not clear at all here. I just I wanna see a little bit more from these Grizz still. But you know, I mean, I just believe in the teams above them more, you know, the blazers the Lakers, the Pels rockets nuggets thunder, you I mean, really the only team you'll maybe you could say the jazz Evan started while the clippers they could regress grizzlies are are kind of in that group fighting for the eighth seed right now. But no, I just I don't quite like the grizzlies as much as those teams. Yet. And if their defense regresses at all they're in big trouble because they are not a good offense of all right? We got about three minutes left here. What should the grizzlies do Chandler Parsons contract Chandler Parsons has twenty five point one million for next season the most likely outcome? Here's they just eat it. You know, you take it and have it for another season. Don't stretch it or anything like that. Because that would add more money for future seasons. There are elements that could change that one of them being Markelle souls player option if he opts out in resigns, maybe the math gets a little bit different view upset and leaves than their calculus completely changes. But by and large they shouldn't give up an asset to move it. Because they're not going to be a cap space team anyway, and they don't know what their luxury tax obligations are going to be with the uncertainty with Casalan, Wayne Selden, and all these kind of just other guys that might be in the rotation next year. So I would say hold onto it unless some other team from whatever reason overvalues Chandler Parsons, which seems almost impossible at this point. And now fortunately to have enough depth where they can really treat him as value at. So they don't need him in the rotation. But when channel Parsons healthy plant. Emphasis hot cert- actually hurt their future as a frequent Twitter. Commenter a Turkey. No way. I mean this year is part of their future. You know? I mean that that shouldn't be forgotten. It probably is also good for them to get out from under that obligation that they owe to the Celtics that's top eight top six and then unprotected the next three years. So to convey that pick you could argue might be a good thing. You could say, well, yeah, we'll in another another part of that is would they have been able to tank hard enough to get into the bottom mate with how? Well, they're playing like, you know, if they're a middle of the road. It's more painful to give up a tenth pick in many ways than it is to give up the fourteenth where you were right on the cusp. Yeah. I think it's really if they make the playoffs this year versus not making the playoffs. Even if it's like a two game difference. I could see that really affecting their strategy a lot remember Marcus will actually can opt out as well. The way he's buying you might well see him do that, man. We'll see what direction the organization wants to go time. So you could see them giving him. A big albatross contract and that hurting them going forward for sure. But really what you're doing is. You're just postponing the rebuilt. I think know, the big issue would be if management decides, oh, we're so close. Let's just add some more long-term contracts here or make a traitor, we'd take longer salary obligations, or, you know, give Gonzala for your max deal or something like that. But that I think is more the fear than oh, you know, the draft pick issue because I think it's good to get that allegation out of the way to be good enough to to convey that because you know, by the time twenty twenty one rules around you have to imagine they're going to be quite bad. And if the allegation got pushed off all the way to their than they could be giving up a big pick here. Quick one here. Howard. Adding joking Noah affect the same reports from Mark sign indicating that they've been in some talks though, nothing has happened yet. You know, I mean we haven't seen him play at all in almost two years. Now, he remains a a solid rebounder. But, you know, look noticeably slowed as a a pick and roll defender, they do at least in as a switch guy. He is a passer out top you're going to kind of operate that with gestalt, but having a guy who passes and can't shoot is a much different animal than a guy who passes from the elbow and can shoot because you can just kinda lay off the guy and take away a lot of those cuts. So I I don't think he's gonna help much. You're gonna move on. Yeah. Having a warm buddy helps. Yeah. Having a warm buddy helps you just having somebody else in the rotation that they trust will our navy. Not even just as a fallback is useful. And and Jaren they're playing him starting at the four and something you, and I have acknowledged at various points in the past is that it's just hard to run rotation where you're starting power forward is your backup center to you can't do it Utah's has largely over the last couple of years, but maybe Jamie, vicar staffer doesn't want to Jerry Jackson's doing very well in his current role. So just having somebody else in that mix could be useful. But again, it's the balance of playing him the proper amount versus overplaying him is probably the bigger issue than underplaying. No, let's move on to New Orleans. Yeah. So the Pels are ten and ten three and four since the last fifteen sixty they are currently. Eleven to net rating, plus two point two four th and offense twenty four th and defense and fivethirtyeight projects them to forty five games which would tie them for six in the west along with the Los Angeles Lakers, which would be pretty interesting in terms of out that would shake out on budget different things. And first question is from Harris, if the pelicans cannot acquire a starting small forward, what are your thoughts on closing with MIR Titian Randall at the forward spots. This is something that Alvin gentry. We expected him to do at the beginning of the year. He didn't do it at all for like the first I think it was like three weeks of the year. And then they started going to it a little bit more often when they've had Davis which hasn't been consistently. He missed the game against Washington with hip strain. And they played sixty five possessions per cleaning the glass with that trio mostly in crunch time. They have a plus seventeen point to net rating against small sample size. Mostly because their defense has been insane. Ninety three five defensive rating. And the reason why I would support that not against every opponent like their issues against like a lead offensive wings in the playoffs and certain things like that is that it gets the best players on the floor and that the benefit. It of miratec as opposed to a lot of the fours playing the three is that he's a reliable shooter. So you're getting that benefit and he competes defensively, I think you can make a lot of it work. So it's definitely one of the options. I would try member. They've also been missing Alfred Payton for a lot of this time. He's another option that they'll try for this fifth starter r v clothes are actually more accurately along with their other for. Yeah. Mirrored switch to aren't that many threes that are just gonna blow by right like the guys because you can put if as a two or three years really quick you can put holiday on him. If it's more of a power three or or a guy likes shoot over the top like a K D like LeBron now Mirta JR. Is certainly could get blown by. But you've got pretty good help there with a DEA when he's healthy. But by the way, you mentioned they're bad defense, totally respect to a one seven seven defensive rating when Davis is on the floor, and that is really the best of their regulars. But so it really just collapses when he's not out there. And you know, I'm in the near playing a Mirta teach Randall front. Court and you don't have any size in the wing. That's to be expected. So maybe Mirta could get a shot there who you might even go with Randall on some of these guys as well Reynolds, not going to get through a screen, but he can be a switch guy. And you tell me to press up use your length to take away the jump shot. Don't let him shoot over the top. And we'll help you. If you blows by your maybe he could be a better option than someone like how they probably not. But you know, again, these are not a great group here. Next question, should the Pels keep miratec Orlando wrong term long-term says trade everything for a wing will their options for keeping MIR attach are much more varied because they have bird rights on him. Whereas they don't unravel if he opts out of that player option either gotta use cap space to resign them or they can offer valid eleven million next year by the bureau Tich is the better fit Randall is younger, obviously, however, it all really depends on a D. I mean, if he doesn't sign that doesn't impair veteran extension than, you know, do you wanna bring back MIR? Tichitt at big money. Maybe you do an and you try to make a trade in stay competitive. We've seen that's really been more of the ethos of these small market teams that have traded superstars. But also when you trade a d you know, you really you have to get like prime young assets. The the better the player is you really got to go for the juicy stuff that can potentially get you another superstar so the. Yeah. The that'll be interesting. But I think Mirta just just so much better of a fit with Davis. I like Randall, but starting Davison Randall in the front court is it can work, but it's still not the ideal fit him. They've just been so good with MIR to spotting up a run a a working the interior and eighty defensively with miratec totally works. I mean miratec guard four AD helps at the ram everything else. Like that. I also don't think is necessarily a choice just because of the different options. They have available. They might be able to retain both of those guys. But as you said, a dis decision is paramount here because the price that you're willing to pay those players changes in in those circumstances. And I don't know exactly how they do. But I know that they do. So that's interesting. I'm only gonna ask this just because for whatever reason in like six different teams who got asked about Otto porter simply said, what is an auto Puerto trade. Look like for the pelicans doesn't address them their problems matching up against elite wings unopposed or has not done well in his career from what I recall matching up against elite links to this. There's this idea of Otto porter that is that it's very separate from what he is auto porter is basically the distillation of what a guy who is forward sized and shoots threes. Well, but doesn't do a lot else? How much that guy's worth? I do not think that guy's worth Amax contract as he's game is an defensively. It's like, oh, well, he has the right size. He can find those guys he doesn't and he doesn't do it. Well, and so two slow would a trade Lewis, Mike low enough strong enough. Yeah. I and that combination is is really tough. Because you you obviously guys like LeBron are going to be tough. But then also obviously some of the faster guys to the hen federal look like presume hook like he's not. He's not good enough one on one. Yes. Right. And so if. You could get into a circumstance where those skills when revalue, but that's not what New Orleans needs New Orleans needs the other guy. They don't they need somebody who could pair without importer more than they need porter. And he's making just a boatload of money. So would involve filler salary, which the pelicans don't have a lot of probably would end up involving Solomon, Hiller, each one more. They were really miss each. One more exporter makes twenty seven three next year in twenty eight five with the player option, which I think is going to pick up the player option unless he has a much better season. Thanks, so I'm feeling a little under the weather. So thanks for taking the reins on that one. And. Yeah. So I just don't think that he's he's a wonderful fit. And then just a quick one from K J driven. How would buddy healed look alongside holiday Davis? Had he not been traded Sacramento. Having an absolute knockdown guy who hits open shots, and he'll showed more depth to his game. We talked about that a little bit in Sacramento section would be really nice for them to have. I'm not sure how a healed each one more combination would work, but having another guy who could shoot on this team. Even if he's more of a straight to which is be so helpful. All right. Let's move to. Okay. See twelve and seven five and two since the last fifteen sixty the did lose at home to the nuggets on Saturday night fifth in the NBA with a five point eight net rating fifteenth ranked offense and the number one defense in the association they project for fifty four wins per fivethirtyeight, which place them second in the conference. And here's one that you really wanted to talk about knowing everything that we know. Now, would you do last summer's big trade, which of course, was Paul George for victory depot and demont Savona bonus as the Oklahoma City thunder. So, of course, Georgia's resigned since then on a three plus one all depots of merged as an all saris making twenty million a year, flat and Savona sa- has been a very capable backup center in Indiana. And the reason I frame this in terms of as okay see is that I think Indiana debt ree does this trade because people pill has been I opener for them. Paul George probably wasn't going to resign with them said, then they get all this benefit. And this also why look at trade. For Meech team's perspective, separately, even if it's just a straight to team trade, no other elements in place, and so for okay, see, the financial difference between George and Oladipo matters a little bit. I mean, they're they're repeater team their luxury tax Bill is significant. But Paul George is a better fit to me a significantly better fit with Russell Westbrook than depot because of the kind of the way he can function on it off the ball and him being a bigger wing defender will be really useful when okay see gets into the playoffs. So I I'll say my opinion. I I would I would do this deal as okay see as well. So I've said I would do it as Indiana. I think it's clear from their perspective just because they're incentives in there. You know, they can use a bonus more than okay? Can because Stephen Adams is just a worse. But I think Paul George is a meaningfully better fit. And that's why I would do it is them as well knowing that he resigned on a three plus one. And you say knowing what we know. Now, we know what victory will depot became in Indiana, part of that was due to work that he did on his body which actually occurred before the trade a lot of it, really. A got into so much better shape from a body composition standpoint. But you know, it's certainly difficult to imagine that he would have emerged as the type of ball handler and shooter that he did in Indiana playing next to Russell Westbrook a year ago, especially with Billy Donovan's reluctance ever play him as the backup point guard. He finally did it when they were desperate in game five that Houston series, even knowing that. But you know, it was Somalia Kristen time before that to bring up a bad era in Oklahoma City backup point guards. I I mean, I think I probably would do it. And we'll see where they end up the the season to you know, what I mean, if it's just another first round exits that maybe I mean, also worth noting that soup onus would never been maximizing o'casey, they're just playing entirely at the four. I don't think that necessarily would have changed the you're outdoors shooting like more than half fish shots from three was really being wasted in. Okay. See would not have blossomed most likely. So. Yeah, I think clearly they're getting more production. Out of George than I think they would have had Ola depot and Savona stuck around and we'll see too. I mean, you know, how are they going to be this year in third value for Oklahoma City in having at least a playoff team through the Russell Russell Westbrook's prime here, which could be winning more quickly than someone talk about it another time. So yeah, I think I definitely would have done it. But you know, if the George contract becomes an albatross. And you know, they don't make the playoffs next year or something maybe you'd feel differently. But as of now, they look like a solid playoff team the next couple of years. So yeah, seems like a good idea. We'll yeah, we got a series of different star. We got a series of different questions about oh Casey's defense. We lead with the one from rob McIntyre will the thunder be the best defensive team in the league when Andre Roberson comes back while they already are. I think they're absolutely. Yeah. I mean there I mean as of now, and I would say there are teams that will be maybe better than they happened so far because remember we're saying at that point. So then teams like the jazz will have time to figure out as well. But okay, see has a ton of have a ton of defensive. On we saw how well the defendant last year in that period of time when they have everybody healthy. So yeah, I I would say their significant favorites to have that distinction. There would be just them. They're all other teams that would be in that mix them in Boston has had a lot of great defensive stretches. The jazz have that ceiling as well. But I mean nasty wing defenders help defense. I mean, Jeremy grant is just an another huge force for them that can be I think about how nasty their starting five is going to be in have solid defense depending on which is they're playing from their bench. And see I think there's a very good reason to believe that they can be the best defensive team in the regular season at the bare minimum without when they get their full complement of players evoke cases defense remains elite without Roberson. Do they really need him as a Tuckey Dookie? Well, a lead in the regular season in the playoffs. Obviously, you know, they still it was so it'd be nice to have that one guy who can match up. Now, I'm very skeptical of Robertson's health. That's on that. We didn't talk about necessarily is a is even going to be able to come back. This year. You know, that's not what the official timetable is says is going to be back. But nonetheless, you know, this is a couple of surgeries is already had some complications here, actually three surgeries. I believe now and patella tendons are very difficult to come back with. It's good to see actually the Jimmy Lin is playing as well as he is coming off that torn patella tendon. I mean, if they need him just because he's another live body. Maybe they could use it more at the four as well. But I still think he's their best option to guard say James harden in the playoffs, for example. So if they wanted to go small as well, you know, maybe play some of grant at center against say, Houston, if Adams's getting hurt on switches, then maybe that's something they could consider as well. So I don't know if they need him. I think you know, he can help. But yeah, the need for him when you consider everyone's like, oh, he's getting defensive player of the year buzz because they're so much better when he was on the floor last year part of those because they had mellow on the team. So no, I don't think they need him with to the extent that it was believed coming into the season. Even even if I believe he was over compared to what a lot of people think of need is a strong word, but another way that Roberson brings value you talked about the idea of having guy if they have to go to Jeremy granted center, but okay, sees primitive to have a lot of guys that they've tried. I've heartily enjoyed hominy Diallo's minutes. But again, there's a whole different crucible coming. Fro Casey later on in this year. And a lot of the guys they have I just don't think are good enough to play in that in while we have our issues with Robertson's shooting. And now the teams are getting more aggressive at handling those sorts of limitations that can be a challenging thing for them. But just having another option having an option that I like better than a lot of the guys they have would be really useful for them as as time goes on. That's another value that Roberson provides last one ear quickly. Do you think shooter has helped o'casey despite his inefficiency obviously had a big game against the warriors. In oakland. Eddie, I think he has just because with west forgotten how they didn't play much of a schedule will Westbrook was out. But I think that yeah. Just having some kind of confidence someone who can create jobs, even if they're inefficient someone to take the bad shots that your offense offenses naturally going to generate a, and at least you get those without turning it over at least get a decent look at the basket in the half court. Yes, we certainly has had value is helped the team the opposition. That trade was never that. He wasn't going to help the team. It was that is contracts to could look ugly. For a guy who didn't project to be a starter? They actually did start them now with all the twos that they have out the other night and that he had to give up a first round pick to get him as well. So that that's what was really the issue. And we'll see how he ends up looking down the end of the season. I mean, this is a team that is some of the SARS that they have you. I wanna see how they're gonna look in the play offs shooter. Helping keep them a float with all these Westberg injuries has been useful. But you know, to say that oh that traders work worth it. Because he's helped in the first month of the season. I think it's far too early to say that I don't really have any things significant to add to that. So yeah, I mean, he's he's definitely helped them because somebody has to take those shots, and he's been better defensively this year than I expect it that doesn't mean he's been awesome. But he has definitely been better. And that's provided values while. All right. Well, I fear to say that I'm a little out of gas. We got four teams left for have to do them tomorrow here after an hour and forty five minutes of recording time. I apologize. We couldn't get through all of it. But we'll get to the rest tomorrow. So. Touch L. Then anything you ought to talk about before we go day. I should have some pieces coming out for the athletes. Pretty soon have one on DeMarcus cousins type stuff, and then I have another one starting a big series for the thematic laying out the team side of the twenty nineteen off season. So I'm breaking it out in terms of teams that will have cap space something we talked about a lot on the program in two different varietals. And then teams that are going to be over the cap, but under the tax and then luxury tax teams. And so it's going to be, you know, not full on previews. Those are coming in the later part of the season. But more kind of away the land thing of how you wanna think about where this is going and I like doing that early in the season. So that it can be a resource because generally they're not gonna change that much between now and early February. And then at that point, we can reassess. Yeah, you can sign up for C all Danny's work at the flex dot com slash cap. Space taught you all tomorrow. So.

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