Monday Morning Coffee

May 13, 2024

The Lakers coaching search is expected to ramp up this week. The hot rumor is that JJ Redick is the front runner for the job, and that the Lakers are intrigued with the idea of making him their next coach. I normally would not have a problem with this type of out-the-box thinking when hiring a coach who doesn’t have experience. The problem is the Lakers are intrigued for all the wrong reasons. Those reasons include the fact that Redick is cheap, and Lebron James likes him. That’s about it. The coaches with real experience like Mike Budenholzer, Ty Lue, and Jason Kidd are all locked up now, or are about to be locked up by their respective teams. The Lakers don’t really value that experience anyway, and probably don’t mind the fact they are off the market since coaching means little to this front office. Then there’s the issue of what the Lakers will do with the 17th pick in the draft. I know the Lakers want to package that pick in a trade for a star player, but that pick is worth a stick of gum and a pair of used Converse sneakers.

As for the Clippers, the Paul George extension talks have reportedly not been going well. The Clips have reportedly made George multiple offers at less than the max, but PG-13 has declined them. It makes perfect sense why the Clips would do this. They want to stay below the extremely punitive 2nd luxury tax apron. They were able to get Kawhi to extend for less than the max, so why shouldn’t George? Well that’s probably because George feels like he has been more reliable than Leonard from a health standpoint. If he decides to go to free agency, the Clips risk losing him for nothing to the Sixers or Magic. I still think when push comes to shove George doesn’t want to leave SoCal, he wants to make a lot of money, and he doesn’t want to deal with enormous pressure and accountability. He gets most of those things with the Clips, even if he takes a little bit less.

Elsewhere around the NBA Playoffs, Obi Toppin and TJ McConnell really turn into Shaq and Kobe against the Knicks. The Pacers went on a 34-9 run, and even Darvin Ham thought it was ridiculous the Knicks didn’t call a timeout. Karl Anthony Towns knows how to disappear like Hodini in every single playoff series he’s every played in, and it could cost the T-Wolves against the Nuggets. The Celtics have got to be the deepest and most talented team in the league and will probably take out the Cavs, but they may also be the dumbest team in the league given that they live and die by the 3. The Mavs and Thunder was looking like a really good series, but suddenly the Thunder look like SGA and a bunch of college kids from the West Coast Conference.

To baseball, where the Dodgers lost 2 out of 3 to the Padres over the weekend. The Boys in Blue gave up 6 runs in the entire series, yet they lost 2 out of 3. That’s insane, but it also goes to show you just how fired up the Padres have been getting when they play the Dodgers this year. I’m sure they will turn back into the Bad News Bears in their next game. It’s nice to see Walker Buehler back but you have to wonder what you’re watching with him so far. Is he just rusty? Or is he no longer as effective? It’s probably too early too tell, but it’s hard to ignore the fact that pitchers that have multiple Tommy John surgeries just aren’t as successful as pre-surgery. Smart move by Dave Roberts though to keep Shohei Ohtani from further injuring his back and pulling him out of the lineup. Speaking of Ohtani, when I watch how dominant of a hitter he is, I immediately think that I have no interest in seeing him as a pitcher. Especially if it prolongs his career and since the Dodgers are historically a pitching rich organization. I also think $700 million might not have been enough for him.

Then there’s the Angels, who lost 3 of 4 to the Royals. They are now in last place in the AL West, and have the 4th worst record in the Major Leagues. The most discouraging aspect of all this isn’t their record or the injury to Mike Trout. It’s the lack of player development. Reid Detmers was so promising the first month of the season. After looking like Randy Johnson, in his last 4 starts, his ERA ballooned to 8.74, with 9 walks, 27 hits, and 7 home runs. Griffin Canning and Patrick Sandoval have continued to be mediocre pitchers, and the young position players are no better. Nolan Schanuel is only hitting .221, Mickey Moniak can’t crack the Mendoza Line, and Zach Neto is only hitting .236 with a terrible OBP. If the Halos don’t move Brandon Drury, Carlos Estevez, Matt Moore, and anybody else at the trade deadline they can get value for, they simply aren’t serious about building a legitimate baseball team. I’m not sure I would think they are with Arte owning the team anyway, but without that it would certainly solidify that theory.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *