Half of the questions were about Artest. funny line about mo pete. Here goes:
Chad Ford: Hey everyone. Thanks for coming. Lots to talk about today. Where's Ron going? What's going on in Miami? Who else is on the block? The hot seat? Let's roll.
Donnie, Indiana: Should the Pacers trade Artest? Everyone assumes that they should, but I think they should hold on unless the get an All-Star
Chad Ford: I don't think they're getting an All-Star. They love Ronnie, but there comes a point when enough is enough. Chemistry, as rookie Sarunas Jasikevicius pointed out yesterday, can sometimes mean more than talent. In this particular case, I think he's right. I think Indiana knows that they won't be an elite contender without Artest this year. The plan should be to get a few assets that put you in an elite position in the next two years. My guess is that they go for young players or high draft picks who could develop into a second star.
Vinnie Buttafuko, Jersey: I heard Artest and Croshere are going to LA for Odom and Kwame Brown. Any truth to that?
Chad Ford: It doesn't work under the cap and while that might be a great deal for Indiana, I think the salaries they'd have to swallow would be an issue. Also, what would LA do for rebounding?
Brian (Lawrence, KS): Does anyone trsut Artest? He ruined a title contending year last year, ruined Reggie Miller's last year, and now he wants to leave a team that A) has an allstar big man, B) has a great coach, and C) is a title contender. What teams would want this joker?
Chad Ford: About 20 from the sounds of things. You've got to love the NBA. Everyone's head says this guy is trouble. Everyone's ego says that they have the coach, system or front office, where Ronnie will shine. We'll see. The thing is, Ronnie's a Top 15 talent in the league. People are willing to take those risks for that type of talent. ... Most people that is. I don't think you'll see Utah or Detroit making an offer.
Mark, Dallas: Why aren't the Mavs making a run at Artest? I don't understand it.
Chad Ford: I don't either. I'm not sure there's a team in the league who has more motivation and the talent to get a deal done. A combo of Nowitzki and Artest would make the Mavs legit contenders against the Spurs. And what would it cost them? Probably an expiring contract (ie. Keith Van Horn) and one of their young players -- either Devin Harris, Josh Howard or Marquis Daniels. They'd have to take back the contracts of Austin Croshere and Anthony Johnson to make a deal like that work ... but it's not a bad deal for Dallas. As much potential as each of Dallas' young guys has, none of them touch the talent of Artest. Cuban has been a big risk taker in the past ... I can't believe he's passing on this. I think if there's a system out there that Artest might be comfortable in, it's Dallas. They coddle their players and Ronnie needs coddling. Lots of it.
Rob, Toronto: I heard that Artest may be heading to Toronto for Mo Peterson.
Chad Ford: Uhhh... I seriously doubt it. I think the Pacers want more and can get more than that.
Matthew (NYC): If you had to guess today where Artest is going, where would it be? (Please say NY.)
Chad Ford: I don't think the Knicks have the goods to trade for Artest (unless the agree to throw in Channing Frye). Plus, I think they prefer to send him West. My top 5 are Denver, Memphis, Seattle, New Orleans and Sacramento. I still believe that the Artest for Stojakovic deal probably makes the most sense for both teams ... especially if the Pacers could figure out a way to re-sign him. The Clippers are another darkhorse if they're willing to give up Corey Maggette.
Luke, Baghdad: Artest to Denver? What will denver do? I think they are on the cusp of contention,they just need one more thing to put them over the top, will they make a move? Shout out to all at home in Aurora, Colorado, miss you guys, be back soon!
Chad Ford: Baghdad posters go to the top of the list. I think Kiki would love to get his hands on Artest. The problem is that the Nuggets are limited in what they can offer. They could try to package Andre Miller and Nene, but I'm not sure Houston is interested. Artest would be a great fit, talent wise, in Denver. But I wonder how he and George Karl would get along. I don't think it would be pretty.
Jermaine, Richmond, VA: Doesn't Golden State stand as one of the teams that's on the outside looking in, and is one big move away from seriously competing? What's stopping Dunleavy and a rookie contract like Diogu from coming back east? Wouldn't that make sense for both teams?
Chad Ford: Golden State would be in a GREAT position to get Artest had they not extended Dunleavy this fall. Now his contract is almost impossible to trade. Artest would be a great fit in Golden State as well ... and the Warriors have the young talent to give back in return. This is TOTAL speculation, but Mickael Pietrus, Ike Diogu and Calbert Cheaney's expiring contract would probably be interesting to Indiana ... Artest would give them the defensive toughness they're looking for at the three and Dunleavy could come off the bench.
Donnie , New Jersey: I do not feel the Knicks will get Ron, but who do you think will be traded from the Knicks Roster and who will they bring in?
Chad Ford: The trading season does officially get underway today and you're right ... there are more assets out there than Ron Artest. The Knicks need a point guard and a small forward. Quetin Richardson, Jamal Crawford and the expiring contract of Penny Hardaway are the bait. I could see them making a run at Earl Watson or Andre Miller using Richardson or Crawford as bait. The Nuggets need a two guard who can shoot it and have a glut of point guards.