Anonymous GM: How do you pull it off? First, you talk i…

Anonymous GM: How do you pull it off? First, you talk it over with ownership. I analyzed the team and told them what I wanted to do, the guys I wanted to get rid of and the guys with future value whom we wanted to keep. We obviously traded away some of our veteran guys who gave us a better chance of winning right now for future draft picks and young players. The owners didn’t want to tread water any more than I did. They’d rather go down to the bottom with the hope of coming up, so they signed off on it. It wasn’t a fight at all. In a different season, it might not make sense, but this draft certainly makes it more appealing. Our coach understands that too. It’s no secret what we’re trying to do, and you can’t lie to him anyway or you’ll lose all trust. We never really had to tell him, because the handwriting is on the wall. He knows exactly what’s going on, and he’s good with it. What’s hard is keeping it from the players. If you took a poll in all 30 locker rooms, regardless of how the roster looks, I bet they’d all say they are a playoff team. That’s good, because you want them to play with effort and lose organically. You never tell the players not to try to win a game, but it’s obvious that you’re putting out a team that’s just not good enough to win.
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November 23, 2019 | 12:57 am UTC Update
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November 22, 2019 | 11:37 pm UTC Update
November 22, 2019 | 10:58 pm UTC Update
Mutumbo was the keynote speaker at the third annual Frank Callen Boys & Girls Club Hall of Fame Dinner on Thursday evening at the Savannah Civic Center. Arriving at the club in mid-afternoon, he took some time before the event to discuss his reasons for coming, the radically different NBA which has transformed in the 10 years since he retired and the importance of giving back to the game that changed his life over 30 years ago.
“The game has always changed from one time to the next. In the 1970s it started to become competitive I think and more physical,” he said. “Now — and I call (today’s players) Generation X — none of us who played when I played know. Nobody knows what’s going on in the NBA. I look at myself and wonder if this Dikembe Mutombo could’ve ever played in the NBA if it was like these guys play now. All the shots today just come from too far away. I don’t want to think about having to run to protect the rim and then to cover my man who might be all the way out past the 3-point line.”
November 22, 2019 | 10:50 pm UTC Update
During an appearance on the “Runnin’ Plays” podcast, Jim Barnett — who was drafted and played one season in Boston — shared a story about the time Bill Russell was given a key to the city just before a game the Celtics played in a Southern state. Following the game, the black players on the team were denied entry into a hotel because of the color of their skin. In response, Russell returned the key to the town’s mayor.
The climate of the time affected how Russell interacted with fans. “I remember one time, this businessman asked for an autograph,” Barnett said. “He said, ‘if I weren’t Bill Russell of the Boston Celtics, I’d be just another N-word to him.’ Barnett added that the NBA capped how many non-whites could be on an active roster. “There was a quota,” Barnett said. “You couldn’t have more than two or three blacks. I know that for a fact.”
November 22, 2019 | 10:17 pm UTC Update
Will an NBA team call Seattle home within the next five years? “I sure hope so. If there’s one thing that I could wish for our league structurally, I think it would be to get a team back to Seattle,” Warriors president Rick Welts told NBC Sports’ Tom Haberstroh on the “Habershow” podcast. “It’s obviously a really personal issue for me. I know what that team meant to that city — bringing the first professional championship to Seattle. It’s an amazing market. A lot of the future of the world is being envisioned there. It’s got a vibrant community that would really support an NBA team coming back.”
He, more than anybody, knows the NBA belongs in Seattle. “But the path is problematic,” he said. “The good news is the NBA’s business is really successful right now, and that means we have 30 teams operating without anyone feeling like they’re in a market where they can’t support NBA basketball. And the owners — I would say probably to their credit — have shown no interest. And the league hasn’t really promoted any expansion agenda. So how do you get a team there?”
Storyline: NBA Expansion
November 22, 2019 | 9:57 pm UTC Update
Former NBA star and Old Saybrook native Vin Baker has been sober for almost 9 years but his journey to recovery was not an easy one. Now at 47, Baker is sober and trying to help others get back on track. Here’s his story in his own words: “My journey to recovery started with me hitting rock bottom in all facets of my life. Spiritually, physically, financially and probably in that order. I got tired of being tired. I just woke up one morning after having this amazing career and life of being in the NBA, and being an All Star, and being an Olympian in my time to waking up and everything being gone.”
Vin Baker: “So because of being a public figure for me, I honestly think it took me longer, my very first time going to detox I used an alias. For five months straight, true story, I used a character from a TV show when I was in group settings to cover up who I was, which is kind of weird because I’m six foot eleven, and my first recovery, detox attempt, was in New England. And I was playing for the Boston Celtics so I know people were in the room like, “we know who you are!”, the funny part was, I didn’t know who I was.”
November 22, 2019 | 9:44 pm UTC Update