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Barstool Basketball Mailbag: LeBron/Sixers, Point Guard Tiers, Fixing NBA Rosters & More

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Basketball is a year round sport, so due to that we’re going to do a year round mailbag. We’re still going to run this every Friday like we do during the season, but we’ll be talking about college hoops, transfers, NBA Draft, NBA and recruiting questions. That’s right you get an NBA and college hoops mailbag all rolled into one every Friday. Reminder you can always submit questions on Twitter @barstoolreags

Brad Underwood has been successful at both of his previous stops before Illinois. Trust history, Carl. Now, this year isn’t necessarily going to be great. It’s all part of the rebuild. You lose guys like Lucas/Alstork/Smith but gaining guys like Ayo Dosunmu and Tevian Jones. Those are really nice pieces to play alongside Frazier as Underwood is building this roster as he sees fit. I’d be surprised to see Illinois in the NCAA Tournament this year. This feels like the year where they take the development process to the NIT and then next year you’re discussing NCAA Tournament. He has the program going the right way, I trust that.

Tier 1: Collin Sexton, Trae Young, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander
Tier 2a: Aaron Holiday
Tier 2b: Jalen Brunson, De’Anthony Melton, Anfernee Simons
Tier 3: Jevon Carter, Devonte’ Graham,  Landry Shamet, Tony Carr
Tier 4: Trevon Duval, Elie Okobo, Shamorie Ponds

Those are all the point guards that I see being drafted. Note I’m considering guys like Jerome Robinson and Shake Milton more as off ball guys though they can handle the ball too. I think the bigger drop off is from tier 3 to 4 than any other spot. I actually like this class of point guards despite not really thinking any will be a huge star. There are a lot of guys here that I see having long careers and in the rotation, but not altering the franchise. I think there’s a slight jump from tier 1 to even tier 2b and then another slight jump from tier 2 to 3.

Start over new? I mean that’s really the only thing. In all honesty, you hope that Isaac can stay healthy because I think he can be a nice piece in the rebuild and you have to hit here at pick 6. You really can’t miss and need a guy that can be with the franchise for 8-10 years. Now there’s a couple different ways you can go here and I think taking Young or Sexton makes sense. Right now the Magic don’t really have anyone who can take you off the dribble to create for themselves. Both guys have the capability to do that. What it really comes down to though besides hitting that pick and keeping Isaac healthy is getting out of bad contracts. You need to either wait out the Fournier/Biyombo contracts or find a way to unload them. However, I do think this is sort of a dead team, but if they draft correctly the next 2-3 years you’re right back into it.

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The Pistons are in a weird spot too. Yes, they felt like a failure last year but they also dealt with a bunch of injuries. They actually were pretty good when Jackson and Blake were both healthy. That’s going to be the key. Keep Blake healthy and figure out what the hell you’re doing with Jackson. You either need to trade him or work with him in playing the pick and roll with Blake. I’d also try to figure out what you want to do in terms of Blake and Drummond on the court together. You don’t have a first round pick so at pick 42 you need to decide if you want a frontcourt help or someone who can shoot the ball. Personally, I’d lean with a guard like Graham if he’s available there more than someone like Metu.

Yes, I think the best player on the planet is the best free agent option for any team, especially the Sixers. The Sixers need someone who can be a playmaker and that’s exactly what LeBron is. It’s been reported he wants to play off the ball more, he has the ability to do that in Philly. He provides that versatility to where you can run him, Simmons, Covington, Embiid and Saric and really switch just about everything. He’s become a decent enough shooter to provide some help there as well. So, yes, sign LeBron if you can.

Yes. People have to remember that Nova still returns Eric Paschall, Phil Booth, Gillespie and Cosby-Roundtree from last year’s rotation. Throw in the fact they are bringing in Joe Cremo as a grad transfer and the best recruiting class possibly ever for Nova and this is a top-5 team. You have experience, you have talent, you’re going to have some NBA talent and you have depth and versatility. I’m not sure what 5 teams would be better than that. You can still run a bit of a death lineup due to Paschall and even if Donte and Spellman leave this is a team that can contend for a Final Four/national championship.

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I hate trying to guess what people will do mostly because I don’t want to tell them for something like this. Huerter is picking up a bunch of steam and I’ve been talking about how much I like his game since last year’s U-19s. He’s a bit of a playmaker while being a great shooter with good size. I think he’s a second round pick now and could be one of the few players that could actually go back to college and improve stock. I think he’s someone who can get feedback about what he needs to improve on that’s actually possible and not just stuck. I would guess he comes back to school as I think he ends up a mid-second round pick.

1. Find a way to play hoops in front of NBA scouts
2. Finally see what it’s like to reach the dumb cabinet above and behind my fridge
3. Dunk everything and anything

I don’t know if he finds a spot but I wouldn’t be shocked to see Pinson get a 2-way contract. The problem with Pinson is he does everything okay and nothing great. He doesn’t have that one thing he can just rely on to get him to the league. Now, on the flip side that’s what makes him an interesting 2-way contract guy. A team can take a chance there, see how he develops within their system, he gets to work with the NBA team during training camp and possibly his jumper improves. Combining that with his defense and perhaps he makes the NBA contract.