Yeah look, I noticed that the Magic have basically kept the same team this season - is that right? I must say that I personally approve of keeping things exactly the same and never changing a damn thing out of sheer bloody mindedness.
Quite a few people have noticed that the Magic are quite big. And long. In fact they're HUGE.
In my experience being a little bigger never hurts your performance - what do you say?
P. North, California
Uh, once I had this big juicy delicious pig. Then it went of kind of a trip. At first I thought it was just a little dirty, a little slimy, a little airborne - he could still be salvaged. Then I finally realised he was gone forever.
What's the point of this story? I like stories.
Homer S, Springfield
Someone told me that the Magic still haven't signed the guy they drafted this year... something about a red shirt. Is this true?
Also, is this a legal way to save on salary? Asking for a friend.
R. Sarver, Phoenix
Lots of analysts are bullish about the direction of this Hawks team. They say that ATL has nice young pieces, and the potential to put up a lot of points. You've got to love a team that's not afraid to shoot on sight.
I also noted that former Hawk Joe Johnson has recently been plucked from the 3-on-3 comp. Reckon Atlanta might take a chance on another 3-on-3 member who is also not afraid to let it fly?
Smoove J, formerly a resident of Atlanta
Do you remember the days when self-absorbed show ponies would retire without dignity? A simpler time, when Allen Iverson would be shunted off to the Grizzlies, or Gilbert Arenas spent more time dueling with guns in the locker room than with guys on the court. A time when Black Mambas could spend an entire season chucking up bricks and still be applauded for it?
A time when one-time athletic freaks didn't undergo a strange metamorphosis and somehow become respected locker room veterans? We remember.
Pepperidge Farm Enterprises
Hello, who wants to sex Mutombo?
I don't like these Hawks uniforms - the fluro lettering, the 3D pattern that makes players look fat. Sh1t like this does not fly in the house of Mutombo.
We change these uniforms after we sex Mutmobo, OK?
Dikembe M, Democratic Republic of Congo
Oh hey, love your work
I remember when the Bucks won the #2 pick in 2014, people got all excited on the internet. We even drafted Jabari Parker.
Why aren't people as excited now that the Hawks have won the chance to sign Jabari this off-season?
Love and kisses,
Mallory E, Milwaukee
Have the Bulls found their frontcourt of the future? Our feeling is that you can never have too many big young men.
The Kardashian Family, Los Angeles
Being born in Illinois, and having some personal experience in coaching, I was disturbed to hear reports of a player mutiny coming from within the Chicago organisation. What was going on in their collective minds?
Is now the time for Jim Boylen to get tough and show the players who's boss? Perhaps start with a nice boot camp... I hear good things.
D. Pyke, Adelaide
Since the Bulls signed Thad Young and Tomas Satoransky in free agency, does that mean their rebuild is already over? Because there was a lot of dead wood on that roster last year!
If so, that whole rebuild thing finished quicker than @stewie griffen after a visit to my website.
Ms M. Malkova, California
There are whispers on the grapevine that Gar Forman has actually made several competent moves of late - do you agree with this summation?
It's a pity, as he seemed poised to take the mantle as the most despised Bulls GM in history.
J. Krause, c/o The Afterlife
While browsing the names of the Chicago Bulls
cheerleaderplayer squad, I noticed that they drafted Coby White and re-signed Shaquille Harrison.
Does this remind you of anything?
Peter N, Bigfooty Mod HQ
Hi, do you even mailbag?
Someone told me that the Clippers are going to have a lot of 'point forward' play this season. Of course being absolute imbeciles they don't realise that there's no such thing as a point forward - it's made up, just like Christmas. I'm pretty sure pro wrestling isn't made up though.
Don't tag me.
S. Mead, via Twitter
Hi, now I'm writing in to the Clippers' mailbag.
The Los Angles Clippers have signed Kawhi Leonard and Paul George. Kawhi Leonard and Paul George are good players, so it is a good thing that the Clippers signed them. The Clippers should be quite good now.
Anyway, the Clippers should not have signed Ivica Zubac for four years. Ivica Zubac only averaged 9 points per game last season - that's less than 10 points per game, and if you average less than 10 points per game then you can't be a good player. Another great move by Laker Nation to dump Zubac.
Magic J, Los Angeles
How ya doin?
Many years ago now, the Lakers decided to throw their lot in with Phil Jackson and his beautiful then-fiancee over an aging GM and talent scout.
There's no way this could have possibly backfired, right?
Jeannie B, Staples Center
Some friends of mine in Toronto wanted to know how free agency negotiations between Los Angeles and Kawhi Leonard went down.
Was there much to-ing and fro-ing? Was there a qualified Doc in the house? Was Kawhi's house decor critiqued? Inquiring minds need to know.
D. Jordan, Brooklyn
I hear that good things are in store for the Clippers, that people are excited. I also hear that the owner Steve Ballmer likes developers. I mean he really, really, REALLY likes developers.
As luck has it, I have quite a history of developing real estate. Do you reckon I'm a chance of scoring an invite?
Donald S, c/o Sterling International Towers
View attachment 747282
2018/19 Record: 22-60 (13th in East)
2018/19 Stats: Off Rating 104.8 (29th), Def Rating 113.2 (25th)
Add-a-Bulls: Thad Young (3/41), Tomas Satoransky (3/30), Luke Kornet (2/5)
Deduct-a-Bulls: Robin Lopez (Bucks), Antonio Blakeney (FA)
Drafted: Coby White (#7), Daniel Gafford (#38)
Guards: Satoransky, LaVine, White, Arcidiacono, Dunn
Wings: Porter, Young, Valentine, Hutchinson
Bigs: Markkanen, Carter, Kornet, Felicio
Team Salary 2019/20: $114 million ($5 million over cap)
Est. Salary 2020/21: $106 million ($12 million cap space)
Nice to get a question from an entire family. Just goes to show what a good, wholesome game NBA hoops can be for everyone.
There's no doubt that the Bulls have a lot to work with up front in Lauri Markkanen and Wendell Carter. Injuries limited their time together last season to a minimum, but the theoretical fit is there - a sweet shooting unicorn paired with a traditional defensive fulcrum.
As with any case where you're starting two seven footers together, Chicago will have to work diligently on their spacing at the offensive end, as well as finding a way to mask Markkanen's deficiencies at the other end. Whether Jim Boylen is the man for the task very much remains to be seen.
After adding Otto Porter and Thad Young (hey, they're still biggish men), the Bulls will have the option to go smaller this season should circumstances dictate - although playing Markkanen at the five could leave Chicago exposed defensively, while a potential Young/Carter frontline would cramp spacing on offence. It's not a perfect mix, and there remains a lot to prove... but still, it's definitely up front where the Bulls look most potent in the short to medium term.
View attachment 747373
Jim Boylen and coaching staff (pictured left) receive some friendly feedback from players at a recent practice session.
Interesting question there, Pykie.
Jim Boylen certainly had a memorable introduction to NBA coaching last season. Replacing Fred Hoiberg in the Chicago hotseat, Boylen impressed even the most ardent naysayers by provoking a full blown player mutiny inside one week. And people say caretaker coaches are a waste of time, hey?
Boylen presents less as a player-driven, analytics-versed 21st century coach and more as a 9th grade PE teacher after half a dozen coffees and a Rocky marathon. His tactical innovations for this season appear to consist of "putting in a running game" and having players "play their balls off". Rick Pitino circa 1998 would like his playbook back, but we'll see how Boylen goes.
It's fair to say that Boylen and his enabler, John Paxson, are already on pretty thin ice with Bulls fans. In the interests of political correctness, we'll simply state that Boylen may be the man to make men of prodigious basketball boys... but it's hard to see him leading the team anywhere special in the long run.
View attachment 747352
Official 2018 Chicago Bulls team photo.
Thanks for your question, Ms. Malkova. You obviously have some professional experience in the disposal of wood.
To be honest I too was surprised that the Bulls got their chequebook out this off-season, especially to sign a veteran like Thad Young. While Young should prove to be a far better investment than the Wades and Rondos of this world, it definitely points to a desire to return to the playoffs ASAP.
Chicago didn't get a lot of luck with the lottery balls, but after three successive no. 7 picks perhaps GarPax feel they have all they need to return to contention. We can probably add Otto Porter (26) and Zach LaVine (24) to the Bulls' presumed core for the next few years, giving them at least five young pieces to build around... but still, when two of those pieces (Carter and Coby White) have next to no exposed form at pro level, this is a major vote of confidence from the Bulls' front office.
A tidy two-year rebuild, or a bad case of premature escalation? The proof will be in the puddings... the sweet, sweet, milky puddings. Ahem.
View attachment 747358
Gar Forman, pictured here after he managed to outsmart another GM. We're stunned too, Gar.
Nice to have your input, Mr. Krause.
After what might be charitably described as a shaky few years, Gar Forman has indeed made a few moves of late to help rectify what was largely a mess of his own making.
Markkanen and Carter look like solid enough hits from the last two drafts, but Forman's rebuilding piece de resistance came in stealing Otto Porter away from hapless Washington for a second round pick. This was essentially the GM form of a cripplefight in which Forman ended Ernie Grunfeld's career by TKO.
As for this off-season, Young, Satoransky and Kornet may not be the sexiest signings, but they all appeared to actually help their teams last season... which already represents an improvement for a team which started last season with Jabari Parker and Cameron Payne on their roster.
Saying the Bulls have improved from the days of signing Dwyane Wade and Rajon Rondo as their backcourt of the future is damning them with pretty faint praise, but we here at Bigfooty believe in giving credit where credit is due. We also believe in avoiding cheap shots aimed at low hanging fruit... *cough*.
Yes, it reminds me of terrible rap albums and the glorious 2004 NBA Finals. Thanks for writing in!
1,2,3... Bigfooty Rocks!
When I was hanging ten with my skateboard buddies the other day - I'm a little older than them, but I like to remind people that I'm still cool - one of them happened to mention that he thought that the Sacramento Kings change coaches more often than rich men change wives.
I have to say I disagree - Luke Walton is the perfect coach to bring a family friendly vibe back to Sactown - what do you say?
V. Ranadive, Sacramento
What's happening, playa?
Someone needs to tell them Kings to slow down with the spending, dawg. Tell them that if they ain't thinking straight then they may wake up one day and find that all their money is gone. After that comes the ultimate humiliation - selling yourself out to make ads for sh1tty betting companies. So what's the ANSWER?
Keep it real,
A. Iverson, Philadelphia
As a longtime fan of the Kings (hey, they sometimes dress in black), I liked that Big Willie's style - why did the Kings let him leave? I'm not sure that I have a lot of faith in his replacement, Dewayne Dedmon - wasn't he that dorky guy with bad teeth on Red Dwarf?
Get jiggy wit it,
Fresh Prince, Bel Air
Hey, these previews are the best thing I've ever read. You deserve a Walkley award, a Pulitzer Prize and a pay rise.
Anyway, Buddy Hield is coming off a career season and is due a big fat extension. Meanwhile Bogdan Bogdanovic has just finished tearing up the FIBA tournament and is also out of contract at the end of this season.
Can the Kings afford to pay them both, you handsome devil?
Nephew of Skeletor, Snake Mountain
Dear Heartless Bastards,
I was excited in anticipation of attending my very first Melbourne Cup this year. Then I find out that my Khaleesi, Taylor Swift, has PULLED OUT!
What is the point of attending these marquee events if the star attraction pulls out? What am I going to do, become a degenerate and bet on a horsey race? Let me say that if I had a date with Taylor, I would never pull out.
P North, Northy Residence
Did you know that Ramesses II died at the age of 90, after reigning as Pharaoh of Ancient Egypt for at least 66 years? Since almost all his subjects to a man had never known another king in their lifetimes, they feared that his death would bring about the end of the world and bedlam ensued.
H. Carter, London
Dear Mr. Kotter,
Oh my God, the Dallas Man-chicks are totally bringing back a bunch of guys I've never heard of to play off Doncic. It reminds me of me in the 1970s.
Up your nose with a rubber hose,
Vinnie Barbarino, Brooklyn
Hi, am I on camera?
As a die-hard fan of the Knicks whenever TV cameras are involved, I'd just like to know if Porzingis is coming back soon?
Name and Address Withheld by Parents