The Last Word With Lewis Woodard
Now, I don’t typically buy conspiracy theories. Trust me, I don’t. But the NBA Draft Lottery? Well, let’s just say some convenient things have happened throughout the years. Like last year, when the NBA-0wned New Orleans Hornets won the lucky ping pong ball and not our Charlotte Bobcats, who had the worst record. Saints owner Tom Benson had just agreed to purchase the team, which the league had been trying to sell for a year and a half. Add in the fact that Benson was in attendance and Michael Jordan wasn’t and you can see why people raised questions.
As you’ve now heard, the Charlotte Bobcats will become the Charlotte Hornets. Credit to CBSSports.com’s Will Brinson for breaking the story late last night. We don’t know exactly how long the process will take, but we do know NBA Deputy Commissioner Adam Silver said the process would take “at least 18 months.” So we know Charlotte’s basketball team in 2013-2014 will again be called the Bobcats. The 2014-2015 season will tip off in early November of 2014, a little over 17 months from now. I have no inside information, but I suspect that the organization will aim to take the floor in 2014-2015 wearing purple and teal.
James Dator, editor of SB Nation’s Cat Scratch Reader, joins Lewis to break down the Panthers’ draft picks and discuss what they learned about new GM Dave Gettleman. Was picking Star Lotulelei over Shariff Floyd the right call? Will the coaching staff be able to develop Edmund Kugbila into a productive offensive lineman? Should Jon Beason and DeAngelo Williams feel nervous about the A.J. Klein and Kenjon Barner selections?
UNC entered the 2012 football season with a postseason ban due to prior NCAA violations. Adding to the NCAA’s punishment, the ACC also ruled that the Tar Heels would be ineligible “for regular season or divisional recognition.” Well, UNC finished in a three-way tie atop the Coastal Division and has recognized itself as Coastal Division champions.
Leading up to the draft, the Panthers’ first year GM Dave Gettleman made it known that he would build the team from the inside out. He preferred big linemen, or “hog mollies” as he called them. But we didn’t know just how much he loved them. And we didn’t know where he stood on the classic “draft for need” versus “draft best player available” debate. His first round selection of Star Lotulelei told us next to nothing.
The Last Word 4-23-2013 – Ben Swanson, editor of SB Nation’s Rufus On Fire, joins Lewis to discuss the Bobcats’ 2012-2013 season and to look ahead to free agency. Was the season a success? Should the Bobcats retain Mike Dunlap? How much should they offer Gerald Henderson in free agency?
It’s understandable to see a few Sydney Lowe holdovers transfer or to lose stars to the draft, but Rodney Purivs doesn’t fit either category. He’s a Gottfried recruit and he’s choosing to leave the school. Convincing fans and recruits that the program’s future is still as bright as a it was a year ago – when they made a surprising Sweet 16 run – will be Mark Gottfried’s biggest challenge.
While the on-court pendulum has swung toward Duke recently, the battle for America’s collective heart is a little less clear. Both Harris Interactive and Facebook have released data over the past few days. Which do you trust more, a market research firm or the all-powerful social networking site?
The Last Word 3-27-2013 – James Dator, editor of SB Nation’s Cat Scratch Reader, joins Lewis to discuss the Panthers’ recent free agent signings and look ahead to the draft. How will D.J. Moore and Drayton Florence fit in the secondary? Will Ted Ginn improve the Panther’s underperforming special teams unit? Who would be an ideal fit in the draft?
The ACC Network’s Jeff Fischel joins Lewis to break down the four ACC teams who earned a bid to the NCAA Tournament. They discuss whether the ACC got the shaft on selection Sunday. They also look ahead to UNC, Duke, NC State and Miami’s match ups this weekend.