- Gery Woelfel has a wide-ranging interview with John Hammond that's well worth a read. Hammond still seems higher on Andrew Bogut and Yi Jianlian than anyone else, but given his diplomatic style he's not exactly throwing anyone under the bus either.
"I don’t think it would be fair to say that, that there are untouchables on this team. You look at the obvious: we have two, very good young pieces in Bogut and Yi that you can build around. Bigs are so hard to find. The Boguts and the Yis ... it would be awfully hard to move guys like that.Hammond emphasized the need to make the most of opportunities, suggesting he's heading into the summer with an open mind. To that end, he stopped short of backing himself into a corner when Woelfel asked about the competition between Yi and Charlie Villanueva at the PF spot and Mo Williams and Ramon Sessions at the point:
"Does that mean Michael Redd can be moved? Or anybody else on this roster? No. But I don’t think it’s fair to use the term untouchables when you are a team that won 26 games this year."
"In my mind, yes, they can co-exist on this team. But you know what? All of those guys you mentioned are assets, even Sessions. The way he finished the season ... as we continue to work the phones (in trade talks) I guarantee you his name will come up. "So those guys are all assets. Anytime you have assets, you look at that as positives."
- Complementing Woelfel's basketball discussion, Charles Gardner provides an interesting profile of Hammond the traveling man. Win or lose, you get the feeling that when all is said and done no one will have anything bad to say about Hammond the person. Hopefully for Bucks fans, the success he enjoyed with Joe Dumars in Detroit will carry over and we'll be admire his work as much as his character.
"Joe always said we complement each other well, because 'you coach-think and I player-think,'" Hammond said of his former boss. "But the great thing is over the years, he learned to think more like a coach and I learned to think more like a player.
"When you become a hall of fame player, it tells how hard you've worked to become that. If you can carry that over to your next opportunity, that's what Joe did."
- The Bratwurst ponders what might have happened had the Bucks picked Chris Paul in 2005. Brett also names Alabama's Richard Hendrix his supersleeper pick in this year's draft.
If I was running the Bucks’ draft room – and did not move into the top three in the lottery – I would try to trade Villanueva and move down in the draft to get Hendrix. At the very least he should be a bruising, quality player who could come in the game and offer a nice change-of-pace to the finesse skills of Yi. In the best case scenario, he could become a dominant power player who scores at a high rate, pairs with Bogut to become one of the best rebounding frontcourts in the league, and also has the athleticism to do a little of everything else. Either way, it’s highly likely that he will a least be a good player.
- Ersan Ilyasova had 16 points (6/8 fg) in 16 minutes in Barcelona's final regular season game of the year, a 90-84 loss to Iurbentia Bilbao. Barcelona finished the season in third place behind Real Madrid and DKV Joventut, and now faces sixth place Bilbao in the first round of the ACB playoffs starting this Friday. Read more about Ersan's Spanish exploits right here .