The Downbeat #1k43 - The Idle Hands Edition

USA TODAY Sports

Some things to keep you busy until the next flurry of Jazz news.

While things are slow for the Jazz, I like to catch up on other basketball related media; after all, I’m a general hoops enthusiast. As I mentioned last week, I’ve been listening to the audio version of Jack McCallum’s Dream Team, and I absolutely love it. I will probably listen to it again in a month. If you’re also experiencing a lull, here are some recommendations (I think I did this last year, too. I’m reiterating. Indulge me.):

Books

"FreeDarko’s Undisputed Guide to Pro Basketball History", Various.

“Dream Team: How Michael, Magic, Larry, Charles, and the Greatest Team of All Time Conquered the World and Changed the Game of Basketball Forever”, by Jack McCallum

“The Book of Basketball: The NBA According to The Sports Guy”, by Bill Simmons (I haven’t read this. Heard its good. Its next in my queue)

“When the Game Was Ours”, by Larry Bird, Earvin “Magic” Johnson, with Jackie MacMullan

Movies

I love hoops movies. Here is a list:

Magic & Bird: A Courtship of Rivals (Based on the book above)

Hoop Dreams

NBA TV Presents: The Dream Team

On the Shoulders of Giants

ESPN 30 for 30:

Without Bias

Winning Time: Reggie Miller vs. The New York Knicks (relevant)

No Crossover: The Trial of Allen Iverson

Guru of Go

Once Brothers

Broke (also covers other sports)

Benji

The Fab Five

Runnin’ Rebels of UNLV

On June 10th NBA TV will air “The Doctor”. Can’t wait.

Unfortunately for Amar and Mychal, players are already experiencing injuries preventing them from participatingin the combine. It happens, but it gives a chance for other players to get noticed. In the past, it has been aired on NBA TV. I watched hours of it to get a glimpse of Kanter. It helped sell me on him so when the Jazz drafted him, I was happy.

If you're interested, here's the story stream of the Bucks' pursuit of Coach Sloan from the Bucks' SBN blog site, Brew Hoop. Also, our favorite Jody Genessy went on a Milwaukee radio station to discuss. The radio station is Sports Radio 1250. Check back, I'm sure they'll have audio up of the interview.

But seriously, check out Brew Hoop's stream. They do great work over there.

Zach Lowe wrote (as usual) a great article last week. The topic of this one was the debate between small ball and a traditional lineup. In it he looks at the lineups and matchups amongst the remaining playoff teams. The conclusion is that the traditional big-man still matters. There is still a large proportion of scoring going on by the big men of the various teams, and the the interior defense that players like Tim Duncan, Marc Gasol, Tyson Chandler, Andrew Bogut, and Roy Hibbert bring are undervalued and under-appreciated by most fans. Certainly Favors and Kanter should be looking at these guys and taking notes on how to best make a mark in the NBA. I'll take a 17 and 10 guy that defends well any day.

Yesterday Amar put up a good article highlighting how some of the Jazz's young players have compared to the average minutes of players across their draft position. The results were unsurprising, but what was surprising to me is through those 40 years, how many players at their draft number turned out to actually be good players, or even memorable ones. Here is the link to Amar's post. Take a look at the players listed and see how many of them you recognize. I think it goes to show how much of a crapshoot the lottery can be. The best metaphor is that of raising a child. You can put all the effort in you want, but in the end its not nature or nurture, its some crazy combination of both that yields a good player. Even if you completely duplicate the process that yielded Michael Jordan, you still may end up with JR Rider.

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