"I'm ready to play, I'm excited to play," he says. "Last year I got down a little, I think. My outlook this year is this is my job, I'm going to have fun doing it. We've got good guys on our team. Just try to have fun playing again - I think last year it wasn't fun for me a lot. It was my own fault, whether putting pressure on myself or what. For me to play well, I think for any player to play well, you have to have fun playing. I think my mindset's a lot better this year."
Last year was certainly a step back for Nick, but I for one hope that he can get his game together. I don't know if he'll ever be an All-Star player but the best parts of his game combine the blue collar toughness of Dan Issel with the all around savvy of Brad Miller, and that's something every team can use.
My sympathies to Ralph Lewis. I did not know the circumstances of the tragedy but that is simply horrible.
From the same story kudos to Bob Hill for trying to clamp down on the bitching to referees. This IMO is something the Sonics have had a problem with going back to the Karl days, partially because Karl himself was a little bit of a bitch, and partially because the vet players the Supes had like Detlef and Gary couldn't keep their frigging mouths shut and the rest of the roster took their cues from those guys. Watch an old clip of Det sometimes. The dude seriously thinks he never fouled anyone in his career. Anyways, I think it is something that the officials know about the team ... Nate tried to cut down on it, but nobody was going to tell GP what to do ... the time for griping is past.
Chiesa, who was Jerry Sloanâ€™s assistant in Utah for 16 years, said his first decision toward improvement was to make one fundamental change.
But wait, there's more!
â€œIf the world is perfect, we only want to switch if it is a short clock (the shot clock is under five seconds),â€ Chiesa said. â€œJust to switch for the sake of switching, that is a level of being passive. It gives players a chance to say, â€˜I wasnâ€™t guarding him on that play,â€™ rather than taking the mentality of, â€˜I can guard him myself.â€™ You want to help out of strength, not out of weakness.â€
This is a Sonics coach saying this? No seriously, a Sonics coach said that?? Somebody pinch me!
Just think if Chisea was around a few years ago he might even have been able to cure Peja Drobnjak's crazy BO.
Chiesaâ€™s other impressions?
â€œI am impressed by Chris Wilcox,â€ he said. â€œThat guy has got talent. That guy is only touching 1/100th of what he can do. He has got some toughness. He has a good low-post game. And I like his attitude. So, when we get on him, that is a positive.
â€œAnd (Luke) Ridnour, he has got game. He can get in that lane and play. A lot of guys canâ€™t get into that lane. He has a great dribble game. He can make something out of nothing. He is playing well. His defense has been excellent.â€
That quote ought to get y'all talking...
Nice training camp piece by Percy. Not a lot new in here though, I have to say.
"This has been one of the hardest training camps I've ever been through because guys are just going at it," Watson said. "We go hard in the morning for three hours. It's getting to that point where you need to play somebody else."
Hey, did you guys see this yesterday? Andrew Bogut's out 6-8 weeks with a sprained leg.
Bummer for the Bucks.
In other NBA news, check out this site for your NBA preview fix, it's tight. I think we have one on the Supes coming out soon, I'm not writing it but I can't remember who. Short term memory loss at it again ...
Thanks to Frank Hughes' blog for the following tidbits, one funny as hell, one not.
Pistons fans with good memories might need convincing, because their most recent vision of Ronald Murray â€“ nicknamed Flip because of his childhood affinity for gymnastics â€“ was of a player who missed 43 of the 55 shots he took against them in Clevelandâ€™s seven-game playoff series loss to Detroit in the Eastern Conference semifinals last May.
I'm just so glad I don't have to read this guy's name in conjunction with the Sonics any more or have to read posts saying why he should be starting.
The sale of a large, freeway-friendly chunk of land in the heart of Bellevue by grocery giant Safeway appears imminent, sources say, but it won't be the SuperSonics basketball team that buys it.
In recent months, the Sonics have explored the possibility of relocating the team from Seattle when its lease at KeyArena expires in 2010. The Safeway site has been mentioned prominently as a possible site for a new arena.
And a big shout out to Eric Gimmestad!
"I am a lifelong Sonics fan and Bellevue resident. I ... would like to give my support for a new arena," e-mailed Eric Gimmestad. "Hopefully Bellevue can be home to the Sonics and the glory of the City That Saved The Supes!"
Just want to finish up with an exhortation to get your booty to Goofy's on Thursday and represent! We need your presence please!!!