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Pacific Notes: Griffin, Tucker, Simmons

Clippers power forward Blake Griffin underwent a second surgical procedure this week on his broken right hand, Ramona Shelburne of ESPN.com relays. The latest procedure was related to his initial one and isn’t considered a setback, Shelburne notes. The original expectation that Griffin will miss approximately four to six weeks is still currently in place, according to the ESPN scribe. The Sixers and Nuggets have reportedly checked on Griffin’s availability, though the Clippers have no active interest in trading him in spite of offers that several teams have made. A report from Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical on Yahoo Sports noted that L.A. plans a concerted effort to look for Griffin trades in the offseason if they disappoint in the playoffs this spring. While Griffin waits to learn if he’ll be facing discipline from the NBA, here’s more of what’s happening in the Pacific Division…

  • P.J. Tucker, who is the subject of recent trade rumors involving the Raptors, says he wants to remain with the Suns, Paul Coro of The Arizona Republic relays. “I love being in Phoenix,” Tucker said. “It’s been my longest stop of my career and hopefully it continues.” This desire to remain in Phoenix is dampened by the team’s struggles this season, Coro adds. “It would suck,” Tucker said about a potential trade. “I’m not going to lie. I was here when it was down. We came up and now we’re having a tough year this year. Seeing it full circle and not obtaining the goal of making the playoffs since I’ve been here, that wouldn’t be the top of my list of things that I like.
  • The Lakers currently hold a 19.9% chance at landing the No. 1 overall pick this June and there are questions if Ben Simmons, the projected top pick in this year’s NBA draft, and power forward Julius Randle would fit well together, writes Mark Medina of The Los Angeles Daily News. “Julius Randle is that 4 guy who handles the basketball,” NBA TV analyst Steve Smith opined. “It would be interesting if they would play them together or not together.” If the Lakers did select Simmons in the draft it would raise questions regarding Randle’s future with the franchise considering the number of similarities between the players’ games, Medina notes. “He has to be the secondary ball-handler,” an NBA executive said of Simmons. “If you’re not going to use him as a point forward, you’re wasting your time.
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2 thoughts on “Pacific Notes: Griffin, Tucker, Simmons

  1. aarongill

    If Simmons comes Randle will be trade for a center is my guess.

  2. chicagobullies

    The Lakers almost have to draft Simmons, regardless whomever else is available or on the roster.

    Randle seems to be an unselfish player, and he is definitely not a selfish person. He has grown accustomed to winning throughout his years in basketball, and ultimately his goal is to win.

    The Lakers desperately need someone with star potential, and Simmons possesses all the physical attributes to become an NBA Star.

    If the Lakers were to pass up Simmons, I’m pretty sure fans would just about riot, that is assuming they get the chance at the number one pick.

    With all of this being said, I’m sure the Lakers could engineer an effective rotation, while maximizing both Simmons’ and Randle’s productivity.

    Initially, I would have to think, if they chose to play them together, that they could operate in a relative small-ball fashion with Simmons, Randle, and another forward taming up the 3 forward spots, and Russell playing alongside Clarkson, Nick Young, or Lou Williams. That is, assuming both Young and Williams are still on the team next season.

    Otherwise they could simply manipulate rotations having Randle and Simmons rotate on and off the court, based upon match-ups. Also, obviously there is speculation Randle could be traded to find a more suitable Center or Forward to play alongside Simmons…Regardless it would be a great problem to have, and it is not a “76ers” type of issue, because there are plenty of solutions available for the Lakers.

    The Lakers will be fortunate just to simply have this supposed “problem or concern,” because that would ultimately mean they just drafted one of the more special talents the NBA has seen since Anthony Davis!!

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