To be clear, there is no actual prize. This contest is for bragging rights only and if you want, you can write a guest post on Bright Side of the Sun.
There's only....actually, I have no idea how many possible line up combinations there are given a 15-man roster with five of those 15 starting together. Paging, Jim. STAT!
Anyway, regardless of how many possible lineup combinations there are, there's only one answer that will be correct and it could be yours. Just make your guess on the Facebook page before the lineup is either announced or reported by a credible source.
Guesses in the comments here don't count. In fact, I'm closing the comments on this story to force you to go to Facebook (and while you are there, you should Like our page because we do so much for you and you don't have to pay us anything so just do it because we asked and karma).
Phoenix Suns center Marcin Gortat started the season playing great on both ends but has fallen off the table recently. As we well know, the Polish big man is never stingy with his opinions and shared some choice words with media from his home country.
Look, this situation isn't a surprise to me. The season ended last year with Gortat either in or very near Alvin Gentry's dog house. His propensity for shifting blame and inability to do certain things on the court (like box out his man) were frustrating to watch. Even before the season began he was calling for more pick and rolls so he could get his touches despite the fact that the Suns don't have the shooters to space the floor. And as much as we love Goran Dragic, Goran Dragic is no Steve Nash.
Despite those ominous signs, Marcin started things off with a bang. He was a shot blocking machine and was finding his points in a very efficient manner. But after recording five blocks, 12 points and 11 rebounds in the comeback win over the Cavs, he's been a virtual non-factor culminating in a season-low 23 minutes against the Heat on Saturday.
Well, here's some choice words from Marcin to make the situation
better so much worse.
Coach Alvin Gentry told me that the main post option was Luis Scola. You, on the other hand, are number one on defense.
MG: Unfortunately... I've been doing the dirty work all my life, and now I have to come back to that. I will fight for what's mine. I'll try to prove to the coach that I can play an important role in the offence. Unfortunately, I don't think I'm even an option for Gentry. He doesn't even take me into consideration. The situation is critical. We're playing the same thing we've been playing last year, but the truth is we have a completely different set of players. I don't think it really works. I can't get frustrated now though, I have to stay positive.
The quotes are coming from an interview that Gortat gave to the Polish web site Przeglad Sportowy which you can find here. There's plenty more there.
The translation above comes from NBA blogger Adam Koscielak at Gothic Ginobili. Adam says he's a native Polish speaker (which I can't verify since I am not a native Polish speaker). The quotes, however, appear to be accurately translated. I know we have enough Polish readers to confirm or refute the translations.
Przeglad Sportowy also reports that Gortat rejected an extension offer from the Suns and that the Orlando Magic, Dallas Mavericks, Boston Celtics and Chicago Bulls are interested in trading for him. Wonder where they got that information?
Regardless of how you evaluate Gortat's skills and potential as a basketball player (I've always considered him an average starter while others saw more), no one can be happy with his lack of discretion with his frustrations.
If you aren't happy with your role in the offense, take it up with the coach. If you still disagree with what you are being told, go out and prove yourself on the court. Marcin seems to understand this and yet can't help but also throw gas on the fire with his public comments.
Does he think that things reported in Poland won't make it back to Arizona? He's a smart guy and knows better than that.
Stay tuned for some interesting damage control in the next few days as Gortat and Gentry are asked about these comments.
For those rosterbators in the crowd, fire up the trade machine (The Polish Trade Machine!) and have some fun. 37 Internet Win Points if anyone correctly guesses a move in advance.
These quotes are direct from the recorder of our own Mr. David King. I had a some spare time available to transcribe them and so I'm going to present them without editorial comment (although a few things jumped out at me from Gentry's remarks). Dave will be back around tonight to give his thoughts on the matter.
The players left the practice court for a meeting and didn't take questions (although Mr. Paul Coro and Mr. Craig Grialou might have camped out in the hall and waited for them so we might see some quotes turn up later this afternoon. If that happens, we'll share them).
In the mean time, chew on these.
Dave asked Alvin for his comments on what Marcin said. Gentry knew exactly what he was being asked and responded:
"I'm glad he did. It's going to be what it is. Nothing's going to change. We'll try and throw him the ball and we'll try and get him the ball as much as we possibly can and do everything we can to get him the ball but you know, it is what it is."
"We'd love to be able to throw him the ball and have him post up and score for us (but) that hasn't been one of his strengths really."
Dave followed up by asking what Gentry felt Gortat's strengths are:
"Screening, rolling to the basket. Athletic enough that he can get offensive rebounds, running the open court like he did last year. Nothing's changed from last year."
Is his role in the offense impacting his defense and rebounding?
"You should be able to separate them. They're two difference facets of the game. Playing defense and rebounding and blocking shots has nothing to do with what you do on the other end. See Kenneth Faried."
Gentry also discussed the line up change and repeated what he'd said after the game on Saturday, "We will make a change."
He wouldn't say what the change would be or even if he's decided on the specifics yet. He said he just doesn't like how the starting unit is playing together and left the door open for some guys changing positions. Interesting.
"I don't, in general, like the way those guys are playing as a group. We'll look at positions we have guys in and combinations."
Asked specifically about a changed role for P.J. Tucker, Gentry said no. He called him a great defender who would be "in game when we need stops."
He wants to see the team pass more and swing the ball from strong side to weak side but when open, guys need to shoot.
Stay tuned for more on this later.