The NBA pond is large, but not that large, right? Every season a couple hundred players float in and out of team rosters. Behind them stand an army of coaches, support staff, executives, etc. Multiply that by the number of seasons played and the rarefied air of professional basketball actually encompasses a big group of individuals. In theory, the Milwaukee Bucks could pick any number of people from this group to fill out their coaching staff.
That makes the assembling of has-been Bucks coaches around Adrian Griffin all the more interesting. Terry Stotts coached what may as well have been an entirely different franchise, but he does indeed have ties to the org and an extended history as a moderately successful head coach elsewhere to boot. Joe Prunty is, I’m sure, a perfectly fine assistant, but his somehow ending up back here after standing by during Kidd’s flameout strikes me as a little safety blanket-y from the front office for lack of a better metaphor. Vin Baker and Josh Oppenheimer seem like Giannis guys and therefore made men — again, likely competent to very good at their particular jobs, but still here largely for continuity purposes and closeness to the superstar.
By my count, then, we’ve got three “Giannis guys” in Griffin (your mileage/perception may vary here), Baker, and Oppenheimer, one guy from the Kidd Dictatorship, one guy who has major backseat head coach potential, and three new guys (DJ Bakker, Patrick Mutombo, and Nate Mitchell).
Kind of a weird stew!
Can it work? Absolutely. Is it still a baffling mix of holdovers from years gone by? Absolutely. Here’s hoping Griffin has the authoritative moxie to get it all to gel once the new season gets underway.
“New Song about Adrian Griffin” by milwaukeecurt wins. Wow.
Giannis in Piraeus for Game 3 of the Greek finals with brother Alex and the Bucks’ head coach Alex Griffin (Eurohoops)
I’m not sure if it is a bad sign that people keep mistaking Adrian Griffin’s name. I’ve mixed him up with AJ Green (I blame Adrian’s son AJ Griffin), the usually punctilious folks at Eurohoops outright gave him Giannis’s brother’s name, and you just know the spelling on “Griffin” is going to be absolute hell in the comments all season long. In any event, I’m happy he’s getting to wine and dine in Greece on Giannis’s dime while they hash out a plan to make MarJon Beauchamp into an honest-to-God NBA player.
Nine names to consider for the Milwaukee Bucks with their pick in the upcoming NBA draft (Journal Sentinel via Yahoo)
The odds of the Bucks keeping the 58th overall pick and not casting that SOB into the ether for cash are somehow lower than the odds of our having the insight and foresight to pick someone useful there. Your expectations should have pick 58 going to, idk, the Pacers for $500K, we’ll nab two or three random guys you’ve never heard of as undrafted free agents, then promptly forget those people ever existed while they slog it in Ulaanbaatar for the next decade.
Looking at the names JR Radcliffe valiantly dug up for us, it’s all a crapshoot anyhow. Just don’t pick the guy touted as the next “Christian Wood or Thon Maker,” please.
He simply cannot help himself when it comes to investing in companies with the lowest Q ratings of all time. My only concern regarding his investing his public image with a candy company is that we’re leaning a little too heavily on the “he’s just a big kid” angle. The philosophical quotes in the playoffs helps offset this image, but I worry about his boxing himself into a corner as the zany dude. I mean, he is a zany dude, so at least it’s authentic.
PS, the “Giannis Box” looks like garbage:
Appreciate the thrust of the argument here, although I’d contend the reasons why MVPs rarely win titles in the same season these days are 1) Prevalence of threes results in larger swings in series’ outcomes, 2) Talent is better across the league than in previous eras, and 3) None of the guys winning the award right now wields the same relative dominance over the competition that the likes of MJ, Kareem, Russell, et al. held. I did like the flourish near the end about the MVP being more a recognition for the player who cared about the regular season marginally more than his contemporaries.
The one thing Miami has that few competitors do is long-term stability in decision-making. That’s primarily thanks to Pat Riley who has run the show there since 1995 both as head coach and as president of basketball ops. His eye for talent and deft identification, elevation, and continued support of Erik Spoelstra has seen the Heat trundle forward iteration after iteration after iteration.
I thought a lot of the quotes in here from and about Spoelstra were great, too. Obviously any high level success in the pro game involves fastidious planning, but it doesn’t hurt (in fact, it’s quite appealing) that a measure of belief in blood and guts has a place in your approach to team identity.
The Social Media Section
If he isn’t negotiating with himself, is that because he’s negotiating a contract extension with the Bucks?
I’m not negotiating with myself. The work will be done pic.twitter.com/O3cqvbCZ1Z— Giannis Antetokounmpo (@Giannis_An34) June 10, 2023
Serge understood the vision long ago
Instantly nervous about whatever someone who admits to having given a TED talk might say after making said admission
You have to check out Director X’s Guided Meditation Series and learn to relax your mind ♀️ ♂️ pic.twitter.com/uOw6pmnTo8— T. Antetokounmpo (@Thanasis_ante43) June 11, 2023
The “Guys you hope come to your team without having to give up too many assets” All-Stars
I love this. Everybody build different. https://t.co/Fs2Awo2r5K— Bobby BP Portis (@BPortistime) June 11, 2023
A tweet as ambiguous as Jae’s NBA future
MAN THIS IS GETTING OUT OF HAND.!! THIS INTERNET STUFF IS UNBELIEVABLE.! ♂️ https://t.co/UsnVg7Elsb— JAE CROWDER (@CJC9BOSS) June 3, 2023
The 2023 NBA Finals will have wrapped up by the time we’re back for the next MMMR. Miami looks to be on the ropes going back to Denver for tonight’s Game Five; the size differential between Denver’s core guys and their Miami counterparts seems to be too great for the Heat to overcome. With the Nuggets’ perimeter shooting also slightly outdoing the Heat’s, the routes to victory look far more favorable for Nikola Jokic & Co.
If Denver does get it done, be prepared for the onslaught of “Isn’t Jokic already far ahead of Giannis on the all-time list?” takes. Or maybe not — the whole world may collectively decide to go back to forgetting Jokic even exists until we’re back next spring anointing him with a third MVP trophy.