Ask Sam Mailbag: 06.09.17

There is no comparison between the 90s Bulls and the Warriors. The 90's Bulls went on a 3 championship run, while Warriors won a title, lost a title, and on the verge of winning yet another title with the help of somebody who they didn't need. You can't compare the two teams. Okay yes, back then we had a highly defensive squad/this season's Warriors are very similar, but overall considered we're the only team so far to do a 3peat in terms of winning a NBA title, there's no comparison. Had the Warriors won last season, and were on the verge of winning their 3rd title, then you could truly compare the two teams. All they are this season, is the Western version of the LeBron James' Miami Heat team. A whole bunch of 'stars', with people left wondering if the MVPS will be Curry/Durant in a tie (cause technically it's still Curry's team, despite how many points Durant has scored so far).
Kieron Smith

Bad coaching also costs you playoff games. How is it that Tyron Lue doesn't call a time out with over 30 seconds left down by one? He stood there and watched Irving play hero ball for 15 seconds, wasting any chance at getting a two for one. As Michael and Kobe found out, you need a coach at the end of close games, someone you can trust. Not LeBron's caddy.
Jim Harlan

I really don't understand Lebron James in this series. I get that the Cavs are overmatched, but Lebron has yet to score even 40 points in this series (just missed it by 1 point in game 3).

Why isn't he being more aggressive? He should really be aiming for 45-50. And where are the post-ups? JR Smith and Iman Shumpert clearly don't have it, so why does Lebron keep giving them opportunities to prove as much (I can almost see why Phil let them go for a bag of chips and a second rounder). It seems like he's forcing his game of unselfish play and "smart" basketball at the expense of playing a different type of basketball for the sake of winning. I thought he finally understood this in the 2015 Finals. Triple doubles are nice, but constantly looking for an open Smith, Shumpert, or Jefferson isn't ideal when you're the best player in the world -- not exactly Paxson, Hodges, and Armstrong on the perimeter. Take the shot when in the paint instead of passing to an open Smith/Shumpert/Jefferson, make the shot or get fouled and go to the line (has Lebron ever been one to not get calls?). There will be misses that don't result in free throws, but 5' from the basket is still closer than 20.
Terrell Bryant

If you look down the road Jimmy's next contract would be a bad one for the Bulls - a supermax which takes him well into his 30s - considering the minutes Butler has played already and that players at his position not aging well. So how about, after recent reports that 76ers are open about trading their No. 3 pick, trading Butler for No. 3 (Josh Jackson) + a player from the 76ers (Saric) + letting Mirotic walk in free agency.
Jerry Becker

What’s with the meeting with Butler & Bulls management? Is this management's way of saying, “We really want the build around you but if we are offered a deal we feel we can’t turn down, be open minded to a trade” According to the media, the meeting was to discuss the future direction for the team. Reports say both parties left very satisfied (whatever that means or amounts to).
Randall Sanders

Would you trade Jimmy to Minnesota for Z LaVine and a swap of draft picks?
Michael Freeman

As fans, we often forget that winning a title often involves luck, which means lucking into a Lebron or Duncan or Curry. Even Curry didn't manifest to how he is today without Kerr. Plus as GMs you have to appease your boss - as in the owner. Trading a high pick in a "surefire" draft, trading / letting a popular player go, etc. will not endear you to the owner - even if you're right in the long run. After all, acting against popular demands often result in mock and ridicule - and you may not get to keep your job because of it. Even if you're proven right down the road, you will not be able to enjoy the fruit of your labor - the new GM will. Also is it blasphemous to say that (unfortunately) the Bucks will be better than us in the near future based on their current core?
Abram Bachtiar

I checked back in with a dozen mock drafts today. The consensus picks for the Bulls are Jarrett Allen & Donovan Mitchell, with 3 each. Nobody was picked twice. Others mentioned were John Collins (Wake Forest), Justin Jackson (UNC), Terrance Ferguson (Aus.), Juwan Evans (OK. St.), OG Anunoby (Ind.) & Anzejs Pasecniks.

When you first mentioned Donovan Mitchell, I wrote, "Not sure how I feel about a 6’1” shooting guard (Donovan Mitchell). I think we already have one (Canaan). I have visions of guys 6’4” and up shooting many 3’s right over him.” I’ve learned since then that he is 6’3” and very athletic, also did very well filling in at the point for six games last season. Shooting stats are mediocre, but he is supposedly improving there. Sounds better than he did to me at first.

Jarrett Allen strikes me as a project and a gamble. He’s long & athletic with huge hands. But I’ve heard there are questions about his motor, his D & his IQ. Only 19, so there’s room for growth, but no guarantee he has the brains and the drive to improve. If he DOES though… well, that’s a helluva a body. Ferguson is another gamble. The one thing he can do right now is spot up (39% from the arc), and his motor looks fine. But he’s very young and needs to learn a lot. Both he and Allen need to add at least 20 lbs, of course.

Don’t know anything about the others. OG Anunoby? Anzejs Pasecniks?? (Gesundheit!)
Art Alenik

I know this won't happen, but here's a doozy of an 4-team NBA blockbuster trade I came up with...

Bulls get: No.2 pick (Ball), Ingram, Mozgov, Brewer and Black

Lakers get: Butler, George, Anthony, Lopez and Rondo

Knicks get: Russell and Deng

Pacers get: Clarkson and Randle, No. 28 pick
Mike Kay

Who is LBJ going to beg to come to the Cavs via free agency this summer at a vast discount? Does he beg Gordon Hayward? Chris Paul? Or will LBJ be the new 6th man for the Warriors?
Mike Sutera

Does the new CBA allow for amnesties as was the case with its predecessor?
David Thompson

Can you please explain the delay in announcing the Bulls picking up the Rondo option? By waiting until after the June 22nd draft they would be implying that they could draft a point guard that would make Rondo unnecessary. If they feel he has trade value don’t they need to exercise the option? Pax said it was almost certain they would pick up the option. It’s nice to retain your flexibility and options but Wade or not, why wait?
John Petersen

Portland is said to be shopping all 3 1st rounders; want to shed some bad salaries with them (Leonard/Harkless/Crabbe). So we take 15 and Harkless for a future pick and someone like Payne. We get a shooter athlete in Harkless and have 15 and 16 to get a PG and an athletic big.
Bob Ding

LeBron will be 33 years old next season as will Deron Williams. Richard Jefferson will be 37 as will Kyle Korver. Channing Frye will be 35. J.R. Smith will be 32. Kevin Love 29, Tristan Thompson 26, and Kyrie Irving 26. James Jones 36. Shumpert 27. Derrick Williams 27. Do you see these teams continue to add pieces like a Korver, R.J., Andrew Bogut, Deron Williams to their teams in order to deepen their roster? Also are you in favor of these superteams? I am not. Also, rumor has it Dwight Howard is looking to prolong his career by expanding his range to the three point line. Thoughts?
Tom Plonowski