The Starting 5: A look at some of the best hoops content from around the Internet
Don’t let the incredibly boring headline fool you – Feinstein does a solid job breaking down the trade and what it means for the Nuggets’ future. He’s dead on that there aren’t any real game changers for Denver in that trade package, although Kostas Papanikolaou may be a little better than he’s getting credit for in this piece. Clearing a path for Mudiay to take control of the team, however – which Feinstein calls the “silver lining” of the trade – is a great deal. Nuggets fans will miss Ty Lawson, who was a great player, a surprisingly active member of the r/NBA subreddit, and by all accounts a friendly approachable dude, but there’s a lot to be excited about in their immediate future.
If you’re wondering what’s next in Denver now that Lawson is on the move, Michael Pina wants to tell you about Emmanuel Mudiay. You’ve probably heard the glowing reviews of him coming out of Summer League already, but now that we have the full picture of his performance, Pina ties the threads together quite nicely in summary. He probably goes in a little too hard on the deficiencies of Mudiay’s shot after only four games, especially considering he’s still 19, but then I’ve been rooting for the kid since he took the payday in China instead of playing for the corrupt and pointless organization that is the NCAA, so I may be biased. Regardless, a good read especially considering recent events.
Speaking of resisting corrupt and pointless organizations, it’s great to se K.J. McDaniels big bet on himself pay off – to the tune of $10 million over the next three years. It’s probably not the check he would’ve gotten if he hadn’t gotten traded to the Rockets and played out the season on the bench, but it’s a hell of a lot better than the two years + two non-guaranteed that Sam Hinkie offered him in the first place. It’s hard to say more players should do what he did – I’ve never had to look hundreds of thousands of dollars in the face and say no – but if we want to say he set an example, it was definitely a good one.
D’Angelo “Voodoo” Russell didn’t exactly impress a lot of folks at Summer League. He threw the ball away a whole bunch, missed a lot of shots and generally had Lakers fans tearing their hair out and screaming on talk radio that Mitch Kupchak should’ve taken Mudiay. Garrison, however, was actually in Vegas, pretty much just to watch LA, and he has a more measured take. The article is just a collection of his notes, so there’s no clear theme or real point being made. Instead, Garrison clearly takes you through the moments when he saw something, either positive or negative, in Russell, and breaks down what they mean. If you’re a Californian in need of hope, or just want to learn more about the #2 pick, it’s a great read.
Leaving aside that someone over at HP decided to ruin the rhythm of the song by adding in “the” before Caboclo, this is a great piece with a great headline. The basketball media 100 percent spends too much time talking about how Summer League is a meaningless joke, and not enough time appreciating the moments of brilliance you see out of players like Bruno Caboclo. Maloney does a good job reminding you how much these games can mean to the players in them, and how much pleasure you can take as a fan if you stop worrying about the bad passes and awkward turnovers, and just let yourself have fun.