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  1. I agree, it's pointless near the bottom. There are tons of players with 3-4 trophies to their names. It's also missing people (KD at minimum). Here's the list without all star game MVPs: MJ 18 Russell 16 Kareem 15 LeBron 11 Magic 11 Duncan 11 Bird 10 Shaq 9 Kobe 8 Wilt 8 Cousy 7 Hakeem 7 Durant 7 Reed 6 Moses 5 DRob 5 Walton 5 Anyone not in that top ten who should be?
  2. List should include Kevin Durant, who would currently place at Olajuwon tier with seven trophies. Too lazy to figure out who else is missing.
  3. That's about as accurate a GOAT ranking as I've seen in a while, to be honest. Lol at Kobe and Shaq padding their numbers with All Star Game trophies.
  4. Yeah, this is the other part of the equation. Kawhi’s different, like you say. It’s possible he is fully onboard with this whole plan, and didn’t need anyone to come up with it for him at all. But if it’s hard to change his mind and he doesn’t communicate well it would be tough to undo the influence of anyone he does decide to let in. The dots just seem to connect that his uncle is a big part of things, in any case. I’ve only read the cliff notes from that interview; I really should check it out.
  5. Well, to be fair Danny wasn't criticizing the team or the medical staff when he said he should have had a second opinion. He was actually defending both Kawhi and the team docs in that interview, and said the Spurs medical staff is great and have always done a great job. His point was just that sometimes things get missed and it's important to be thorough with injuries, but of course the spin ignored the context. With regards to Aldridge, he was coming off a disappointing season where his touches dropped and he felt he wasn't fitting in the way he wanted. Pop talked to him about it, acknowledged it was his mistake and that he had tried to change LaMarcus' game too much, and from then on things were good and he had a fantastic season getting back to his old game as the offensive focus. I do think they maybe need to update "Spurs culture" a bit for this current generation of NBA players. They were unbelievably lucky with hard working, humble guys like David Robinson, Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili setting the tone there for 25 years. I think they thought they had a continuation of that legacy in Kawhi but one way or another they misjudged what it would take to keep him happy. But I doubt we see much real change until after Pop retires, and honestly it's a bit depressing to imagine what the Spurs will look like after that. Hopefully there is some continuation of the values that have made them such a great franchise up to this point.
  6. We've heard many reasons for Kawhi wanting out, all reported through the media. I am almost 100% sure we'll never hear Kawhi talk about it openly himself. Here's at least a partial list, off the top of my head; I'm sure I'm forgetting some. Spurs docs misdiagnosed his injury Feelings were hurt after he was confronted by his teammates who, with playoffs approaching, wanted to know if he would be returning or not Tony Parker saying his injury was worse than Kawhi's Pop's practices are too hard Wanted to go home and play in LA to be closer to family Wants to play for a team that has "fun" Felt as though he wasn't getting the star treatment the way some of his peers were at the all star game Endorsement opportunities as a Spur are too limited So, it's possible that all of these things are true. Some of them don't make much sense to me given what I thought I knew about Kawhi's personality, and others felt like post hoc sort of justification for the trade demand, especially the way they kept cropping up one after another as things developed. Even taken as a whole none of it seems like something that would completely burn the bridge to the point that he would be hiding away and avoiding contact with the team and publicly demanding a trade (to a specific team) without at least attempting to resolve things. Since it doesn't really add up when you take it all at face value, there are probably hidden reasons. The most popular working theory is that Kawhi's uncle and agent have been steering the ship and working to fracture the relationship between Kawhi and the Spurs ever since they took over his management from his previous agent in 2016. They're trying to create an agency from scratch and see Kawhi as their meal ticket, and need that major market endorsement money if they want to cash in. I've also heard from someone in the know that there may have been an incident back near the beginning of this saga where someone in Spurs management (not Pop) said something to or about Kawhi that offended him, and that his group used this incident to drive a wedge between him and the organization. Pop and RC Buford absolutely did not want to trade him, they were said to feel like they were trading away a son, and RC was reportedly so tormented by the direction things were going in last season that he wasn't able to sleep. I think they really care about him and only wanted the best for him, but whatever problems existed between them and his uncle made it impossible to heal the relationship. I still can't help but have some affection for Kawhi as a person; my personal feeling is that he has kind of been manipulated by his uncle and his agent. I can buy that he cares more about his family than his financial success and would trust his uncle to guide him, and that he would take a family member's side in any dispute with the team. But it's not fair to assume he isn't capable of making his own decisions. He's a grown man so he's got to own all of this. I will continue to laugh if his team's master plan continues to backfire, but I honestly hope he will excel on the court in Toronto and wherever he goes after that. He's an amazing player, way better than what the Spurs got in return; hopefully his head is on straight and he doesn't end up a cautionary tale.
  7. I think you have the wrong impression of where I’m coming from. I’m not criticizing Kawhi for not talking. He can do his thing; it’s cool. I can find DeRozan’s openness refreshing without it being a condemnation of Kawhi’s personality. They are different cats. Kawhi is definitely taking it on the chin right now in terms of public perception, but you’re right that to most it’s not a big deal and that it will be forgotten in time. But he handled his business extremely poorly and unprofessionally, regardless of whatever the whole story might be, and he is paying a price for that regardless of what I think. You won’t convince me otherwise. So forgive me for indulging in a little schadenfreude about it. Yeah, I thought Kawhi was a high character guy, so did a lot of people. It turns out he’s actually the kind of guy who will play hide and seek in a hotel to avoid having to talk to his coach, among a host of other bizarre behaviours. This glimpse of the real Kawhi caught a lot of people by surprise, particularly, from what I gather, his coach and teammates. I think it’s fair to call it out.
  8. I can tell I'm still not over this Kawhi betrayal, because it makes me laugh to hear that Jordan brand is planning not to renew his shoe contract when it expires next season. Also the fact that he's not going to show up for Team USA mini camp is kind of funny; I'm guessing he's scared to look Pop in the face these days. Sorry Kawhi, but you are destroying your reputation. Unless this guy plays MVP level ball next year, people aren't going to forget this stuff. Maybe even then -- even championships haven't redeemed KD in a lot of people's eyes, and what Kawhi did seems worse from where I'm standing. Meanwhile, DeMar DeRozan says more than ten words in an interview, which is refreshing. Guy clearly wears his heart on his sleeve, and it sounds like he's going to be motivated to show the Raptors they made a mistake. If Pop can get him focused on defense and keep him from disappearing in the playoffs, the Spurs will have made out okay in this deal and should have a very successful year.
  9. Honestly, I don't think it affects the perception of the team that much. Everyone knows Kawhi has forced his way out, and no one really knows why for sure. His group has leaked about a dozen different reasons, and none of them really make sense. Spurs have been class all the way (see Pop's press conference today) and are just playing the cards they've been dealt. If anything it looks to me like Toronto is taking the PR hit here, trading DeRozan after he has shown them more loyalty than any star player has ever offered that team, and apparently after they assured him he wouldn't be dealt.
  10. Yeah, it's disappointing to see Danny go. Raps are getting a great guy, even if his shooting has fallen off the last couple of years. Moreover the Spurs are losing a lot of "corporate knowledge" this season, with Green, Parker, probably Ginobili gone. It's a huge transition year for them.
  11. I'm excited for this trade, as a Spurs fan. Mostly it's just a sense of relief for the Spurs chapter of the Kawhi saga to be over. DeRozan is about as good as I think the Spurs could have hoped to do coming out of this mess, with a player who insisted on killing his trade value so much. The Spurs are not looking to rebuild and with LA, Boston and Philly being so cheap in trade talks I'm glad they found something of value somewhere. DeMar is no Kawhi Leonard but he is a proven scorer with tons of athletic ability and is known for being a hard worker who improves every year. With better coaching he may have a higher ceiling; hopefully he can step it up defensively and Chip can help him find a consistent three point shot. It's a weird roster for San Antonio; they are sorely lacking defense and three point shooting now. Hopefully they can make another move to round out the lineup and stay genuinely competitive in the west.
  12. If he refuses to play and claims an injury that is disputed by team doctors, the NBA assigns an independent medical evaluation of the situation. If their judgment is that he can play, but he continues to hold out, my understanding is that he won't be able to enter free agency next offseason as scheduled, and his contract rolls over for another year. I think he needs to appear in a minimum number of games to qualify. If the Spurs hold on to Leonard he really can't afford to sit out, or to slack off on the court. Teams are already very wary of his attitude and the baggage he brings. Holding out another year (note that his team has already stated he's 100% healthy) or not demonstrating that he can still play at an MVP level will both cost him enormously. I don't see how that will be acceptable to him, unless he really doesn't care about getting the kind of contract his talent warrants, and has no priority other than to play in Los Angeles (both of which may be true). It's just a bizarre situation, and it's hard to see it as anything other than his management completely tanking his value as an NBA player, intentionally or not.
  13. The offline downloading is optional. It's there for people who don't want to use data constantly for streaming, and it's only an option if you have a paid subscription. If you're less concerned about your data usage you can just stream whatever you want without downloading anything.
  14. My understanding is they said it was something he would need to play through and get used to managing the pain. Kawhi’s “second” opinion was that he could rehab it and be back to his old self.
  15. Bill Simmons is saying that Kawhi went through seven or eight “second opinion” doctors before he found one that would tell him what he wanted to hear. Only possibilities that I can see are that he was looking for an excuse to shut it down for the season and get traded, or he’s damaged goods and has a long-term or degenerative condition that will require him to deal with pain for the rest of his career. Either way, buyer beware... My guess is the Spurs know he’s in denial about his injury and are refusing to pay him the supermax, and here we are.
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