Ask Sam Mailbag: 11.23.18

Basketball is the toughest sport to referee.  In college intramurals, I was a ref for many sports and basketball was easily the toughest, can't even imagine how tough it is in the NBA. With that said, it seems to be getting a little crazy some of these fouls called on Wendell Carter Jr. This rookie doesn't get the call thing seems to go too far with this seemingly mild-mannered kid. Besides just him, can they fix something with this "jump into the defender" when he's in the air, Dwayne Wade mastered, type of play.  It is getting ridiculous!  A defender jumps, and the offense literally jumps five feet toward the defender in a terrible shooting attempt and is barely touched by him and it is a foul? Is there some way to limit this absurd play that can end up ruining a game?

Jon Kueper

I think the Bulls are a little behind schedule in wins because of injuries.  But, the talk about Jabari Parker being a failure seems pre-mature.  One thing I noticed though that bothers me is his attitude with the media.  He seems to be at war with the media with his short answers and blank stares.   I have been a Chicago Bulls fan for 30 years.  And he could be a valuable piece; however, he needs a real attitude adjustment. I wish Gar and Paxson could sit him down and tell him to relax and grow some thicker skin.  What’s your prognosis for Parker and utilizing his talents? He could breakout with Dunn, Markkenen and Portis comeback.
Ryan Carpel

The Bulls should go after Otto Porter. After all, he's a small forward (and the Bulls desperately need them in order to win). Parker's listed as a small forward, but we know he’s a power forward for now.
Kieron Smith

How long before LeBron forces Magic to trade for John Wall. Well, as long as they make the playoffs. I would hate to see them win the lottery and get Zion Williamson.
Tom Plonowski

My attitude towards tanking is I think the same as yours...but man, have you seen this Zion kid play?  With Valentine's injury it’s gotta be tempting to shut Lauri down till February and go for broke.
Guy Danilowitz

Rookie of the year is one of two people right now. Doncic as you said or jaren jackson jr who you didn’t even mention. Jackson is probably the third best player on a team with an 11-5 record in the west. He has been really really good but memphis so no one remebers anyone there. Conley and gasol both playing like allstars again and neither is likely to make it. Doncic the best player on a 5-8 or 6-8 team.
Jake Henry

This Bulls team reminds me of the 2008 Bulls team a little bit. Neither team is a world beater, but they have their similarities: a core of promising young players, underperforming roster, and a coach on the fritz. What if we land the #1 pick again? From which angle will you crush my dreams?
Yuriy Fomin

I noticed yahoo had a piece on teams with the most cap primed to be players in free agency. The list includes Lakers, Mavs, Brooklyn and a few others. My understanding was the Bulls had huge cap space post likely waving Jabari and getting rid of a few contracts.
Michael Burling

Too bad about Valentine, I’m not a big fan but I am a human being and that’s got to be tough.

Tom Offa

I’ve got a friend who passionately argues that Lebron James is the greatest of all time. I don’t actually have a strong opinion about who’s the greatest. But I’m a contrarian and I grew up watching Jordan so he’ll always be my favorite horse in this particular race.  Well my friend, the Lebron apologist, is always locked and loaded for the MJ vs LbJ debate. So I decided to throw him a curveball last time we had the discussion. I argued that it’s neither Lebron nor Mike, but Wilt, who was in fact the greatest.  His otherworldly stats speak for themselves but neither of us ever saw him play so it’s kind of hard for us to fully compare Wilt and Lebron.  As an observer who’s seen both play, could you craft a convincing argument for why Wilt is greater than Lebron?
Daniel Slesnick