13) Marquette guard Markus Howard will play his senior year at Marquette instead of testing the waters in the NBA, which is surprising.
Howard is from Arizona, but transferred to Findlay Prep in Las Vegas after his sophomore season in HS, then skipped his senior year altogether to go to Marquette, at age 17. When you do that, you’re pretty much accelerating the clock for when you can play in the NBA.
For a player like this to stay four years in college is very unusual.
12) Then there is Kevin Porter Jr, who declared for the draft after scoring 9.5 ppg in 21 games (4 starts) as a freshman at USC. He played 22.1 mpg, missed 11 of the Trojans’ 33 games, shot 41.2% on the arc, 52.2% on foul line. This is a player who is listed as a top 15 talent in the draft, but what about this past season indicates that? He started four games for a 16-17 USC team.
11) Louisville poached St. Joseph’s G Lamarr Kimble as a grad transfer, a big pickup.
10) Lakers fired Luke Walton Friday; can’t be lot of fun hanging around there these days. Walton is expected to land in Sacramento as the Kings’ new coach.
Tyronn Lue is expected to get the Lakers’ job; no shock considering he coached Lebron James in Cleveland.
9) Toronto Raptors’ forward OG Anunoby had an emergency appendectomy, is expected to miss at least two weeks.
8) Random stat: Raptors have played in 15 NBA playoff series; they lost the first game of those series 13 times, going 3-12 vs spread overall.
7) July 31, 2018, the Pirates traded Tyler Glasnow, Austin Meadows and a minor leaguer to Tampa Bay, for Chris Archer.
Archer is a good pitcher, but Glasnow allowed one run in 17 IP in his first three starts, and now Meadows has knocked in 15 runs in Tampa Bay’s first 13 games.
Rays have played seven games on this road trip; they’ve scored in top of the first inning in every game.
6) Interesting fact from Anthony Castrovince: 154 position players retired with only one career plate appearance in the major leagues; 16 of them got a hit. Only five of them are still alive.
5) Baseball season is 16 days old; Bronx Bombers already have 12 players on the IL.
4) Cardinals’ OF Harrison Bader was hit by a pitch with bases loaded twice Wednesday, first time that happened since 2005 (Reed Johnson, Toronto).
3) NFL Draft is two weeks away; some notes:
— Most picks: Giants, Patriots, 12 each
— Fewest picks; Seattle (4).
— Multiple 1st round picks: Oakland 3, Packers/Giants (2).
— No 1st round pick: Dallas-Browns-Saints-Bears.
2) Kid who scored 15.8 ppg LY for Bucknell will go to Kentucky next year as a grad transfer. Stuff like this is why there were fewer first round upsets in NCAA’s this year. The better players in the low major conference have big eyes, hoping to play a season getting on national TV a lot.
1) Not that the NBA playoffs are boring, but since 1988, there have been 136 playoff series where the underdog was +$500 or higher; of those 136 series, the favorite won 129 of them.
Does anyone think there is a team that can beat the Warriors best-of-7, unless Golden State gets at least two starters hurt? Nah, me either.