- We took part in Ridiculous Upside's mock draft and selected Anthony Randolph over Joe Alexander...completely ignoring the wishes of our readers. The first seven picks: Rose (Bulls), Beasley (Heat), Mayo (T'wolves), Gordon (Sonics), Love (Grizz), Westbrook (Knicks), and Bayless.(Clips). If you don't like Randolph, watch this. It will make you feel better. And if you wanted Alexander, then definitely don't watch this. Good thing our opinion doesn't matter, right?
- ESPN's Chris Sheridan lists Mike Redd as one of nine "locks" to make the 12-man US Olympic roster.
The designated zone buster -- something the Americans didn't have in Athens when they faced 40 minutes of zone defense in every game (with the exception of their semifinal loss to Argentina, when Manu Ginobili and Co. played them straight up).
It remains to be seen whether being the subject of trade rumors will be a distraction to Redd when he's half a world away from Milwaukee.
Jim Paschke's keeping a watchful eye on Yi Jianlian. Yi made it look easy in the third and final game of China's series against Croatia, scoring 26 points along with four boards and two blocks in just 23 minutes. I watched most of the game and he looked good, but as Arthur Volbert warns, don't mistake the opponent for the real Croatian national team:
The team that played China appears to be primarily composed of younger Croatian players, who may be stars one day but didn't make the cut this year. Several years ago beating any Croatian team would be a source of pride for China. But now China is truly competing for an Olympic medal and this team is no more the Croatian National team than the Conference USA team was the Memphis team that lost to Kansas in the NCAA Championship.
China keeps winning but obviously the competition is suspect. China does not provide box scores for the Croatian team. Perhaps they wish to hide their identities.
These are the Croatian players who are on the 'A' team and who were NOT here: Dalibor Bagaric, Marko Banic, Stanko Barac, Davor Kus, Kresimir Loncar, Branimir Longin, Damir Markota, Sandro Nicevic, Zoran Planinic, Marko Popovic, Nikola Prkacin, Marin Rozic, Damian Rude, Krunoslav Simon, Marko Tomas, Ante Tomic, Roko-Leni Ukic, Jacob Vladovic.
- Jonathan Givony at DX thinks the Bucks' pick could come down to Randolph and Alexander.
With Milwaukee surprisingly showing very little interest in Danilo Gallinari, it appears that it’s a two man race at this point for the 8th spot between Joe Alexander and Anthony Randolph.I don't think Givony is going on major inside information here, but the fact of the matter is that right now Alexander and Randolph are the only guys who the Bucks have both worked out and seem to make sense at their pick. Kevin Love and Brandon Rush are supposed to be in later this week, but the former is likely to be gone by the time the Bucks pick and the latter could be had later in the first round. Then again, maybe the Bucks should ignore the consensus and consider Rush at eight. I don't see Rush as having the ceiling that many of the other lotto picks have, but he's just a solid two-way player who will be a good NBA player for a long time.
- Steve Kyler at HoopsWorld thinks Mike Redd isn't going anywhere.
nformed sources near the Bucks insist that Michael Redd is not being traded. That has not stopped teams from calling trying to gauge how GM John Hammond will remake the Bucks into a playoff team. The word is while Michael Redd is the attractive piece many teams want to talk about; moving one of the high paid guards – Maurice Williams and or Charlie Bell – is the preferred method, although both have base-year contract issues that would make a straight up swap impossible. The Bucks are far more likely to trade Charlie Villanueva than anyone, but there is a feeling out process that's taking place as teams are trying to get Milwaukee to engage talks on Redd and Yi Jianlian. Don't expect the Bucks to get silly before July 1st; they get a bit more flexibility in terms of dealing their guards after salaries and base year status reset in July.I have no idea whether there's anything to these purported "sources," especially considering that most everyone else thinks Redd will be available for the right price. Moreover, since when is Charlie Bell "high paid"? There might not be a good reason to have a role player under contract for five seasons, but his salary is about 40% under the league average. Dollar-wise he's not a bad value.