Chris Sheridan Chat on Team USA...(Kobe # 1 option)

Chris Sheridan Chat on Team USA...(Kobe # 1 option)

Postby ADT on Fri Jul 27, 2007 10:47 am

Chat with Chris Sheridan

Welcome to The Show! On Friday,'s NBA reporter Chris Sheridan will stop by to chat about the latest happenings in the NBA.
Chris came to ESPN from the Associated Press where he spent the last 10 years as the lead NBA writer.

Sheridan's chat tips off at noon ET on Friday so send in your questions now and join him right here for the answers.

Chris Sheridan: Good afternoon from New York, a 4 1-2-hour flight from Las Vegas, which seems like my second home after being out there for All-Star, Summer League and Team USA mini-camp. (And I'll be back there Aug. 13 when Tean USA reassembles.) We're going to stick to Team USA and international basketball questions over the first 30-45 minutes of this chat, then we can turn to all things Donaghy. Off we go ...

Tee (Flint, MI): Do you think Durant will make the team. He looked liked he belonged out there in the televised game. I think his shooting ability and length makes him a good fit.

Chris Sheridan: What a difference it made to see him playing with pros rather than summer league guys. He threw himself into the mix for the 12-man T of A roster with that 22-point outing in the scrimmage, and there's one factor working to his advantage, the fact that USA Basketball often takes somewhat of a fringe guy to fill the 12th-man role to avoid bruising the ego of a more established player (see Brad Miller, 2006) who isn;t going to get to play much. But I think when it comes down to it, they'll decide it makes more sense to bring along an extra shooter (Mike Miller and Michael Redd instead of one or the other) to determine which would be a better fit for the Beijing roster. I've made my early picks in my blog today for who I think will be on the 12-man T of A roster, so plz give it a read.

Matt Seattle, Wa: What do you think the probable starting lineup for the team will be once all is said and done?

Chris Sheridan: For Beijing: Kidd, Bryant, James, Anthony, Brand/Howard.

Alex (Milwaukee, Wisconsin): What are the chances Carmelo Anthony does not make the 12-man team? I know he's talented, and played well last year. But I like LeBron/Kobe/Kidd to start, and he shouldn't be coming off the bench. Plus, looking ahead to 2008 with Wade and company back in the mix, he probably won't be a good fit.

Chris Sheridan: He was by far, and I mean BY FAR, the bestb player on the 2006 team. He's a lock for 2008.

Chris again (DC): Their exclusion of Agent Zero is ridiculous.

Chris Sheridan: Gilbert didn't come to mini-camp, which was Gilbert's decision. Same with Antawn Jamison, Luke Ridnour and Bruce Bowen, who are out of the mix in terms of making the 2008 roster, along with lamar Odom, paul Pierce and perhaps Shawn marion, who all will have missed the 2006 and 2007 tournaments.

Sourabh (Princeton, NJ): In a last second scenario, is Lebron or Kobe going to get the ball for Team USA?

Chris Sheridan: That would be Kobe.

Chad(Wisconsin): I see you left D-Wade off the starting lineup. Where does he fit?

Chris Sheridan: He came off the bench last year and was very effective as a sixth man. He'll play behind Kobe at the two, and maybe a little at the one depending on how the backup PG competition shakes out between Billups, Hinrich and Deron Williams.

Cory Matthews, Philadelphia: Is it safe to say this is Kobe's team and everyone else knows it?

Chris Sheridan: LeBron would beg to differ with you on that. In fact, I could see there's an interesting multi-generational dynamic going on with those guys, with Kidd representing an earlier generation, Kobe in the middle and LBJ/'Melo/Wade/Bosh et al on the young end. I think when it's all said and done, Kidd will be this team's leader.

Mike (St. Paul, MN): Do you think the lack of size on this roster will hurt them? (No Duncan, Garnett, Oden, etc.) You compared them in your blog to the 2003 team, which had a much bigger rotation of frint court players.

Chris Sheridan: Excellent point, Mike. Their size, and to a greater degree their heft, is still their weak point. They tried to outquick Greece last year by playing small against a much bigger team (DHoward and Brand both barely played), and they got run over. Tyson Chandler adds some interior defense, but there are only so many minutes he's going to get. It's definitely an issue to worry about for Beijing, but not for Vegas.

Ryan (Santa Monica, CA): Who is the biggest competition for USA in Beijing and why?

Chris Sheridan: Spain, the reigning world champs, will go in as the biggets favorite behind the U.S. Argentina, assuming they have all their pros back next summer, can play with anybody. Greece is very tough. Turkey is very talented, but must come out of a very tough qualifier this summer in Madrid, or the extra qualifier they'll have next July to give away the final three spots.

Anthony, Houston: What do you think makes Carmelo a much better basketball player than Lebron or Wade in the international level. Is it his versatility on the offensive end or is it due to the FIBA officials not bailing out Lebron or dwyane when they bowl toward the basket expecting calls that would normally be impulse whistles for NBA referees?

Chris Sheridan: Mostly it's because Carmelo is a far superior mid-range shooter.

JP (CHI): Saw your roster and I only have 2 objections: Prince over Chandler, and Williams over Billips/Hinrich. Chandler is offensively challenged even though he is 7-0. Prince can play similar D, plus he's another shooter. Williams is 2nd tier creator behind Kidd/Nash at PG. He needs to be included, plus he'd be the best shooting PG so teams don't cheat the pick and roll.

Chris Sheridan: I agree with your second point more than ypour first. They need Chandler's size more than they need Prince's defensive versatility, and chandler has a better shot at Beijing than Prince because of the Americans' need for height, shot blocking and rebounding. On Billups/Hinrich, I think they want to see how Chaucney looks in competition, and I think they'll keep Hinrich cuz he was their starter at the end last summer, and they'll want some continuity from the Japan team to the Vegas team to the Beijing team. Now, that being said, I still believe Deron can win the backup or third-string spot if he outplays Billups and Hinrich in camp next month.

PJB Hartford : Don't you think France has a good team? TP, Diaw, Michael Pietrus would be a good start.

Chris Sheridan: Even with Tony Parker, France does not shoot well enough to compete with the best teams in the planet, although they will should at least be a top four team at Euro '07 in Madrid in September.

KenDell Da Bronx, New York : Team USA should have at least invited David Lee from the Knicks ; the man is a rebounding machine and would have helped.

Chris Sheridan: David Lee is in the mix for the 2010 team, KanDell. He's coming to Vegas in august to play on a squad of young NBA players who will scrimmage against team USA, getting into the USA Basketball pipeline. Check by blog for the names of the four others who have committed along with Lee.

Jeff (Iowa): Chris, who among those who declined to accept an invitation to be on the team would help Team USA the most?

Chris Sheridan: Guys with experience who have performed well at FIBA events. So I'd say Ray Allen, Tracy McGrady and tim Duncan lead the list.

Doug (Provo, UT): LeBron and Kidd looked like a solid duo out there in Vegas... What are the chances that they will play together on the same NBA team? Or how long til the Cavs pick up a solid PG that will compliment LeBron like Kidd does?

Chris Sheridan: LeBron had Coach K shaking his head in bewilderwent over LBJ's lack of diplomacy when Bron went to the post-game interview podium and said playing with Kidd made him think about how difficult it was going to be to go back to Cleveland in the fall to play with the Cavs' point guards. Not supposed to be that blunt.

mike (ca): whats the reason Kobe lost all that weight?

Chris Sheridan: I could be trite and tell you it was because he feels it'll make him look better in his next team's uniform, but it's actually because _ according to Kobe _ he felt so bloated after a dinner of pepperoni pizza and grape soda that it made him go on a furious workout binge.

David (Phoenix, AZ): If Steve Nash were born 500 miles south, (i.e: Not Canadian) How much would he help Team USA? Would Kidd still be the starting PG?

Chris Sheridan: If Steve Nash had been born 500 miles south, he'd be playing for the Falkland Isnads (since he was born in South Africa). Canada coach Leo rautins, by the way, is trying to coax Nash and magloire into playing for Canada in Vegas this summer, and dalembert might be wearing the red and white, too, if he gets his passport in time.

Greg, Milwaukee, WI: What must Lebron do to eventually become the go to guy for team USA? Seeing how he is considered the future along with Melo and Wade, but what exactly is he laacking from being the number one guy over Kobe?

Chris Sheridan: Kobe is going to be the No. 1 guy if it ever comes down to a last-second "Who takes the shot?" situation simply because he's got the best chance of making it. His offensive skills are superior to LeBron's.

Jeremy (Chicago, IL): Who do you feel will be the X-Factor for this team or 1 player that can be under the radar if possible?

Chris Sheridan: It'll be whoever their designated shooter is, whether it's Redd or Mike Miller or Joe Johnson or some combo thereof. The U.S> sees a ton of zone, and their inability to shoot from long-range was their a major part of their downfall in Athens and Japan.

Fatos Berisha, Europe: Why Howard/Brand over Amare? Cannot agree with you on that.

Chris Sheridan: In a word: Heft.

math ( brussels, belgium): you, guys often doubts about european players' capacity to defend, but dont you think at this moment that collective defense is their major concern ?? remind you their inability to defend against a simple pick and roll against greece...

Chris Sheridan: Collective defense is their biggest strategical concern next summer, but not this summer.

Dan (DC): If it is Brand over Amare, the word for that decision is Duke, not heft. How naive are you?

Chris Sheridan: Made me laugh, Dan.

Rick (Denver): You said Melo was BY FAR the best player on the team last year. Why wouldn't he be the go to guy?

Chris Sheridan: He'll be Option #2.

Stu (Philly): Any chance this team actually plays some zone in the tournament? Seems like a pretty good staple of international basketball yet the NBA teams have staunchly stayed in basic man to man sets. I don't see any other reason to have Boeheim as an assistant other than to teach the 2-3.

Chris Sheridan: They;'re going to play zone, coach K promised it in Vegas last weekend, and they played exclusively zone in the second quarter of their scrimmage. (Mike Miller was the best zone-buster). When they were playing almost nothing but man-to-man last siummer, they were highly vulnerable against the pick-and-roll when playing bigger teams. Greece killed 'em with it, scoring on the same play something like 10 or 11 consecutive times. So you'll see it a lot in Vegas and Beijing, especially when they're trying to go small and quick.

Soren (LA): How would you rate Colangelo's work for Team USA so far? What would you say his biggest mistake has been so far?

Chris Sheridan: I'll give him an A for effort, a B for execution and a C for overall body of work. He'g got 13 months to get that last grade up to an A. and he is doing a nice job overall rebuilding the prestige of the program. He's got something like 35-40 players in the program from scrimmage teams to the big senior roster, so he's gotten them far away from the faulty dynamic they had earlier this decade when they were choosing a new 12 guys, and 12 guys only, each year.

Chris Sheridan: Got 10 minutes left here, let's go to Donaghy. Please re-post any questions you have on the ref scandal.

ryan ( miami, fl): how many games do you think donaghy gambled on?

Chris Sheridan: I really have no idea, but if he really did gamble on games he officiated, those are the games I want to have a look at. That's why I feel it's so imperitive for the NBA or the FBI to eventually go public with the exact games Donaghy both bet on and officiated. Until we know exactly which games are in question, every game Donaghy worked is in question.

Marvin: If Donaghy's bosses knew he had a gambling problem, why was he allowed to referee all the way into the playoffs last season?

Chris Sheridan: I don't believe it's been positively established whether the NBA knew Donaghy had a gambling problem. The commish spoke the other day about their investigation into whether he had ever been to the Borgata or any othjer Atlantic city casinos, but Stern never spoke to the question of whether the NBA questioned Donaghy about sports gambling.

Adam (Philly): Could the ref scandal be good for the league in the long run? Maybe refs will stop giving superstars phantom calls, and call every game as fair as they can from now on?

Chris Sheridan: I have a very hard time seeing how this can be good for them in the long run. Yes, I believe good changes will be made to the system, but that will not negate the deep damage this does to the league's integrity.

Pete (Chi): I read that the FBI was saying that Donaghy didn't do anything to directly affect the spread or the over-under, but he did more than provide inside info. What could that mean?

Chris Sheridan: Could mean a lot of things, although I'm not so certain, Pete, based upon nothing more than my journalistic instincts, that those stories you reference are being leaked by the feds as much as I suspect they're being leaked by the defense. We'll all have to wait and see what is referenced in the criminal complaint that Donaghy will reportedly eventually plead guilty to. For more on this issue and for what's ahead in the Donaghy case, check out the What's Next piece I did on that very subject a couple days ago.

Chris Sheridan: That's a wrap for today, folks. We'll do this again from Vegas in three weeks or so. A good weekend to all.
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Postby KB24 on Fri Jul 27, 2007 11:04 am


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