Loud Links: May 30, 2009

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Pull out your measuring tape; it is time to talk about measurements.  Griffin’s wingspan has been a hot topic of discussion.  There are only 10 draftees with a better standing reach than DeJuan Blair despite the fact his only stands 6’6" in shoes. Thabeet only needs a 5" vertical to touch the rim. DraftExpress also posted several interviews from the Draft Combine. Can anyone understand Thabeet’s accent? Speaking of accents, Aussie accented Patrick Mills seems like a good kid (perhaps we should consider him with the 25th pick). Riverwind Casino is having a draft party! Is Clay Bennett having more legal issues? Other topics include Robert Swift, Ricky Rubio, and the bearded one himself James Harden.

Analyzing the NBA Combine Measurements

Pre Draft Measurements

NBA Combine Media Availability Interviews

DraftExpress | Jonathan Givony & Doug Thonus | May 29, 2009... Blake Griffin measured out well from a height perspective, but he doesn’t appear to have great length at all. His standing reach and wingspan are both far below average for a power forward, which likely helps explain why he is such an unimposing defender and shot-blocker. In fact, amongst the 42 power forwards in our database who were selected as top-15 picks, Griffin is just a quarter of an inch from ranking dead last in the wingspan category, and an inch from ranking dead last in standing reach. Yikes.

 

2009 NBA Combine Measurement Analysis

NBAdraft.net | Aran Smith | May 29, 2009... Tyler Hansbrough was a big surprise measuring almost identically with Blake Griffin. Many felt Hansbrough was closer to 6'8 but he's actually a big 6'9, measuring 6'8.25 without shoes and a huge wingspan at 6'11.5. His standing reach of 8'10 tops Griffin's by a full inch.

 

Pittsburgh PF DeJuan Blair's arms measure up

Daily Herald | Mike McGraw | May 29, 2009... Pittsburgh’s DeJaun Blair is one of the more intriguing athletes in the draft. He was one of the best low-post scorers in college basketball last year (15.7 ppg, 59.3 FG pct.), despite measuring just 6-foot-6 ½ in shoes. He has an eye-opening 7-2 wingspan, however, and a better standing reach than likely No. 1 pick Blake Griffin. Tough to tell where Blair will go in the draft. Some projections have him in the top 10, others have him still on the board for the Bulls at No. 16.

 

The Thunder just does things the right way

Daily Thunder | Royce | May 29, 2009... It may seem small and may seem like it’s no big deal, but it’s not like this is an isolated incident. This Thunder organization is just committed to doing things properly. OKC is rumored to be "very interested" in like six players in this draft, because they have scouted them so much. Again, that says something right there. When you stick to doing things right, it’s trickles down (or up, whichever way you want to look at it) and effects everything in a positive way.

 

Teams Starting to "Love" Guys

Hoopsworld | Joel Brigham | May 29, 2009... The most glaring tidbit of this sort comes from Jonathan Givony of DraftExpress.com, who cites a source as saying the Oklahoma City Thunder are leaning towards selecting James Harden with the #3 overall pick in June's draft. Even if Ricky Rubio is on the board, this is who they allegedly would like to take at the moment. Don't be surprised to see names like Tyreke Evans and DeMar DeRozan be mentioned in the same breath as OKC, too. We're a far way from the draft and a lot can still change.

 

Ricky Rubio, hype and the great unknown

Daily Thunder | Royce | May 29, 2009... Rubio dashes across halfcourt and busts out his signature play, the fake-behind-the-back-wrap-around.  It’s truly a fantastic play that not only brings you to your feet and makes you start clapping out of pure reaction, but also a slick play that helped score two points. But best of all, it’s sexy. It’s flashy. It just looks awesome. And because of plays like that, we’re lured into this young prospect and we don’t even really know why. We watch the mixtapes with the no-look lobs, the between-the-legs dishes and the behind-the-back-wrap-arounds. For the same reason people like And 1 Mixtapes, they like Ricky Rubio. He epitomizes the beauty of basketball. Nothing showcases how breathtaking the game can be like a perfectly executed pass. And because of this, we’ve fallen for this guy, yet we don’t really even know anything about him.

 

Thunder Want Rubio?

Hoopsworld | Bill Ingram | May 29, 2009... What, then, will the Oklahoma City Thunder do with the third overall pick? The buzz being sent out by the team is that they might go shooting guard, and names like James Harden and DeMar DeRozan have been thrown out there for the media to feast upon. Yet while we've been in Chicago catching up with anyone and everyone in the NBA, we've learned that the Thunder are actually very seriously considering taking Ricky Rubio with the #3 and moving  Russell Westbrook, who is a Brandon Roy type of point guard, over to his more natural position off the ball.

 

Someone is considering Swift?

kjzz.com... 7'1 270 huge body that is a legit big. He is only 23 years old.  Was a top 15 NBA draft pick out of high school so he has talent.  Great body, good  skills, can run for a big.  Wows people in the gym with the lights off if he clicks in could be quite a steal.   Is skilled and would be cheap.   Last time he played was 05-06 and he had a significant impact on the defense when he was on the floor.  He has offensive skills. Averaged 6 points 6 rebounds and blocked a shot in 21 mins a game in 05-06.  Had ACL in 2006 and it usually takes two years to rehab and then he had an injury last season so this would be the year he gets healthy.

 

Thabeet makes impression with skeptics

Journal Sentinel | Charles F. Gardner | May 29, 2009... Scouts have concerns about Thabeet's offensive skills, but his improvement in all facets has been noticeable. Charlotte Bobcats power forward Emeka Okafor recently praised the 22-year-old Thabeet for the development he has made in three years at Connecticut. "Once I got into basketball and started taking it seriously, I started liking the game more," Thabeet said.

 

Thunder to Host Draft Party at Riverwind Casino

Thunder.com | May 19, 2009... The Oklahoma City Thunder will be hosting an NBA Draft party at Riverwind Casino on Thursday, June 25 beginning at 6 p.m. The NBA Draft will be broadcast live on ESPN and large television viewing screens will be placed throughout the viewing area.


66ers' owners sue Bixby arena's owners

Tulsa World | Mike Strain | May 30, 2009... The 66ers claim that the SpiritBank center's ownership group, led by President Tim Remy, owes more than $100,000 and hasn't paid anything to the professional basketball franchise during its one year as a tenant in the arena. The 66ers seek more than $200,000 in compensatory damages.

 

A Time To Chill

The Washington Post | Michael Lee |  May 30, 2009... This draft is quite young and filled with underdeveloped talent, but it could sprout some good players in future years. I think I have a better feel for the personalities of this draft class after speaking with guys for two days. Jonny Flynn can spin yarn with the best of them. DeMar DeRozan is pretty confident. Hasheem Thabeet is charming and able to play Scrabble in four different languages. Blake Griffin is capable of speaking with a soft voice that doesn't qualify as a whisper. DeJaun Blair has lost 40 pounds (from 315 down to 275) since the season ended and has become a huge fan of Kentucky Grilled Chicken.

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