2019-20 Rookie Review: Is Brandon Clarke The Steal Of The Draft?

(image by Tomek Kordylewski) By Matt Esposito Nothing brings on self doubt more than seeing the player you have ranked 7th on your Big Board fall to the 21st pick in the draft. That is exactly what happened to Brandon Clarke; a 6-foot-8 trampoline with deceptively good touch. Earlier in the year, The Playgrounder doveContinue reading “2019-20 Rookie Review: Is Brandon Clarke The Steal Of The Draft?”

2019-20 Rookie Review: P.J. Washington Is More Skilled Than You Think

(Image by Tomek Kordylewski) By Matt Esposito Taken at the 12th spot in the his draft, P.J. Washington went right around where I had him pegged on my personal Big Board (16th.) Prior to the draft, Washington benefitted from receiving solid results on his physical measurables. He appeared bulky enough to hang with stronger playersContinue reading “2019-20 Rookie Review: P.J. Washington Is More Skilled Than You Think”

2019-20 Rookie Review: Remember Trashing The Cam Johnson Pick?

(Image by Tomek Kordylewski) By Matt Esposito I certainly do. But I mean, that’s life. We should have never unlearned the old grammar school adage, “always pick the older, bigger kid in dodgeball.” Am I going to fact check this next claim? No. But I’m pretty sure Cam Johnson was the oldest player drafted lastContinue reading “2019-20 Rookie Review: Remember Trashing The Cam Johnson Pick?”

2019-20 Rookie Review: Cam Reddish Surprised Us In The Pick & Roll

(Photo credit – Tomek Kordylewski) By Matt Esposito As the number five overall player on my 2019 Big Board, Cam Reddish seemed to be built in a basketball factory if that factory was ran by a hoops-crazed Willy Wonka. That positional size. That fluidity. That effortless stroke. Seeing Reddish slip to the 10th pick gaveContinue reading “2019-20 Rookie Review: Cam Reddish Surprised Us In The Pick & Roll”

Are These 4 Players Changing What We Think About Rim Protection?

By Matt Esposito What is more en vogue in today’s NBA than unearthing hidden gem prospects who take the form of athletic, omnipositional players with monstrous wingspans? Executives are longing to uncover the next OG Anunoby, Pascal Siakam or Jaylen Brown. Why? Defensive pliability is at a premium in today’s game. Teams are constantly searchingContinue reading “Are These 4 Players Changing What We Think About Rim Protection?”

2019-20 Rookie Review: Coby White Has One Glaring Weakness

(photo by Tomek Kordylewski) By Matt Esposito Last year, I had Coby White 10th on my big board. There were some aspects to love. White displayed the potential to become a legitimate three level scoring threat; a skill with a premium placed on it in today’s league. He also routinely showcased an advanced shot creationContinue reading “2019-20 Rookie Review: Coby White Has One Glaring Weakness”

Opinion: You Are Right To Be Skeptical Of Kyrie Irving, The Hypocrite

By Matt Esposito Within the past 24 hours, our favorite NBA reporters have revealed that Kyrie Irving is leading a charge for players to sit out the rest of the season. His concern centers on the NBA returning among one of the most inflamed periods of racial tension in recent American history. About a weekContinue reading “Opinion: You Are Right To Be Skeptical Of Kyrie Irving, The Hypocrite”

A 2019-2020 Chicago Bulls Autopsy

by Matt Esposito The season has ended early for some of our beloved NBA franchises. Here at The Playgrounder we decided to do a postmortem of sorts. Specifically, we wanted to focus on five categories: what the team did well, where they struggled, free agency needs, 2020-21 expectations and a final prediction. What Did TheContinue reading “A 2019-2020 Chicago Bulls Autopsy”

Jerami Grant Declining His Option? What Teams Should Pursue Him

By Matt Esposito Thanks to the Chris Haynes’ podcast and some subsequential, follow up reporting by Quenton Albertie, it appears as though Denver Nugget Jerami Grant will be declining his $9.3 million player option. This comes on the heels of Grant’s two best seasons as a pro. After averaging 1.7 3-point attempts per game andContinue reading “Jerami Grant Declining His Option? What Teams Should Pursue Him”

Which Of These Bigs Will Be First To Develop A 3-Point?

By Matt Esposito Whenever discussing promising, young bigs, my default answer is: Jaren Jackson Jr. Yet, JJJ is already challenging Karl-Anthony Towns as the best perimeter spacing center. Regardless, we’ve recently seen bigs develop 3-point shots in an attempt to extend both their careers and talent ceilings. Which center will be the next to doContinue reading “Which Of These Bigs Will Be First To Develop A 3-Point?”