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The Drive with Josh Graham / Josh Graham
The Truth Network Radio
April 15, 2024 6:37 pm

Taste Test

The Drive with Josh Graham / Josh Graham

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April 15, 2024 6:37 pm

On a Monday Drive, Josh explains why Scottie Scheffler reminds him of Kawhi Leonard, breaks down what the focus should be, now, for the Charlotte Hornets moving into the offseason, attaches letter grades to a busy sports weekend in Graham's Grades, Josh and WD try Pimento Cheese Sandwiches from The Master's and aren't sure how many days old they are, writer for the Winston Salem Journal, John Dell, tells stories from his time at The Masters, and head coach of the Greensboro Swarm, Jordan Surenkamp, joins the show to put a bow on the Charlotte Hornets season and what comes next as Charlotte looks for a new coach and prepares for the future.


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This is The Drive with Josh Graham Podcast.

We're internet sensations, guys! Tune into The Drive weekday afternoons, 3 to 7 on WSJS. You are on a Monday drive at his WSJS news talk sports for the Triad where Scotty Scheffler has now won the Masters twice in the span of three years and he did so with very little drama on the back nine at Augusta. Which feels fitting because there might not be a star with less drama or baggage attached to him than Scotty. You know who Scotty Scheffler is? If you're gonna comp him to other sports, he's Kawhi Leonard. He's Tim Duncan. All three dominant at their best but a different breed of star athlete.

Just look at what Scotty did yesterday. Completely unfazed by the pressure. Meanwhile, everybody around him melted like they were in lava. Ludwig Oberg. He was right there throughout that final round and then he hit the water. Colin Morikawa had a really bad day. And that's a guy who's won a major. Max Homa, who had not won a major but is in the world top ten, he couldn't hold up to the pressure. Meanwhile, it didn't look like Scotty Scheffler was mustering up a sweat, winning the green jacket once again. Now, we really shouldn't be that surprised by this. This is the first time, maybe since Tiger, that you had a heavy favorite going into the Masters.

Just taking care of their business. And doing so by multiple shots on the back nine and it just feeling like a foregone conclusion. Really, we should have saw this coming the entire weekend. He was right there near the top of the leaderboard after day one, right behind Bryson DeChambeau.

And then day two the same way, day three. He never really relented. It was steady on all fronts in a way that is uncommon in that sport. But it's clear that he's wired differently. The reason he reminds me of Kawhi.

Kawhi, we learned how different he could be with some of his stuff off the court. He was bored man, bored man, you might remember that. Or he was obsessed with Wingstop coupons.

Even though he had just signed a 100 million dollar contract. He still wanted to make sure he had his Wingstop coupons and that they didn't expire. He drove like the same car he had since high school. Scotty Scheffler, you might remember, when he won at Augusta two years ago. He still drove his same Chevy Suburban that he had when he was in college.

And it had 280,000 miles on it. That's who he is. He's the Tim Duncan piece Tim Duncan always had at Wake Forest. But even when he went into the pros, this really small inner circle. Not a guy who is seeking out fame and being a bigger figure than he already was.

Small inner circle. Scotty told Scott Van Pelt after one of the rounds that he maybe has two or three text messages on his phone after he finishes up rounds. And it's from his buddies that he's known since he was a kid.

Like that's the dynamic that we're talking about. He was sincere when he said, if my wife goes into labor before 2.30 Sunday. He said this after his round on Saturday afternoon.

If my wife goes into labor with our first child, I'll bow out of the Masters with a one shot lead going into the final round. Seems sincere with that. His faith grounds him. Listen to him.

What is... How about this type of perspective? If anything will tell you more about Scotty Scheffler and how different he is. And his inner circle. And how that inner circle influences him. It's this answer here when talking about the pressure that was mounting for so many.

And how it seemed to not affect him down the stretch at Augusta. I love winning. I hate losing. I really do. And when you're hearing the biggest moments when I'm sitting there with the lead on Sunday.

I really, really want to win badly. And my buddies told me this morning, you know, my victory was secure on the cross. And that's a pretty special feeling. To know that I'm secure for forever. And it doesn't matter, you know, whether or not I win this tournament or if I lose this tournament.

You know, my identity is secure for forever. You might not be religious. Doesn't really matter in this context. Because Scotty Scheffler, that clip right there just told you everything you needed to know about who he is. And why he doesn't feel any pressure.

Like, that, his convictions, and the way that he and his inner circle and where he gets encouragement. That, he's just wired differently. And now he stands alone in golf. It was a couple years ago, Rory, Rom, Scheffler, that seemed to be the top tier in golf. Then we felt last year it was Scheffler and Rom.

It's just Scotty Scheffler now. That's where he stands at the top of the golf world. And at the start of this year, that being the first major that we saw. We'll see how big of a favorite he is at Valhalla, the PGA Championship.

And here in the state of North Carolina at the U.S. Open at Pinehurst. But he's a different breed of star. That was the takeaway from the way he dominated yesterday, where he solidified himself. And I think the call was perfect on Jim Nantz's part on 18.

Saying that it was a confirmation of stardom for Scotty Scheffler. On X at WSJS radio. That's where we're streaming video in addition to YouTube and Twitch. 336 777-1600. You can give us a call.

Will Dalton, the executive producer of this show. John Dell. We'll circle back to golf in less than 10 minutes. He was in Augusta covering his 27th Masters.

You'll join us in studio shortly. WD, as a Hornets fan, though. What is your feeling today now that the season is officially over at 20 and 60? I mean, the season was over months ago.

20 and 62, my apologies. Nothing has really changed on that. But now it's over. I am excited for the coaching search to see what they do. I'm excited to see maybe if LaMelo is going to be healthy for a full year next year. And how he and Brandon Miller can mesh a little bit. So we'll see.

You're kind of hitting on it. This season, the Hornets season ending. 20 and 62 wrapping up in Cleveland yesterday means it is time to look ahead. This season's a wrap. Let's look ahead to the offseason because it should be a busy one.

And there are three big questions looming over this charwood organization. Number one being, who is their next head coach going to be? Jerry Stackhouse is apparently a candidate.

Please don't let it be him. That guy was not a good college coach at Vanderbilt. Now, a couple years later, he's going to be the head coach of an NBA team.

It does seem like Charlotte has a type. Woj put out the list. We won't go through the entire list because you don't know the names of these coaches. I don't know the names of these coaches other than Jerry Stackhouse. Really, you might just it's important to know that they are interested in an assistant from Denver and assistant from Boston. There seems to be a theme that Charlotte wants a younger assistant coach going against what they hired last. It's one of the oldest adages I have when it comes to replacing a coach and the Hornets are moving off of Steve Clifford.

It's not like this was mutual as much as they'll present it that way. They wanted to go in a different direction. You're usually going to hire the inverse of what you're letting go of.

And what did you have? You had an older retread coach. So now they want to hire a younger assistant coach. And you want to hire probably away from successful teams like Denver, like OKC, who clinched the number one spot in the West this off-season or this regular season. We'll see what they do in the playoffs.

The Boston Celtics have been really good. Maybe even like a Jason, uh, a, uh, Boston, yeah. A Jordan Suringkamp type maybe. I don't know.

Hit, hit. Jordan Suringkamp's going to join the show at 5.30. Swarm head coach, Hornets assistant since the swarm season ended.

So that's the number one question. Who's your coach going to be? Second question, what will Charlotte get in the NBA draft lottery? Where are they going to be picking? They finish tied for the third worst record in the league with the Portland Trailblazers. Here's how that gets decided.

A good old fashioned coin flip. If Charlotte gets the favorable coin flip, they will have the same odds as Detroit and Washington, the best odds at getting the number one pick. If they don't get it, they will have a one and a half percent chance less than the bottom three, 12 and a half percent chance of getting the first overall pick. As long as they get one of the top three or four picks, they should be in good shape in this draft. There's no real prize.

It's going to be based on your needs. It's going to be based on your organization's individual evaluations of who you think the top guy is. So if you don't have the first pick, that's still okay, but you can find a really good player in your rotation, even though it's, air quote, a down draft to fit alongside Brandon Miller, LaMelo Ball. And there's reason for optimism surrounding that young core Charlotte has. But where you pick in the NBA draft, that's going to be important.

And then the last question is this. Will Charlotte sign Miles Bridges long term? Miles chose not to waive his no trade clause at the deadline. So Charlotte, while they had a successful trade deadline, were not able to move off him because Miles didn't want to be moved. It will be an incredibly bad look if Miles didn't allow for Charlotte to get something in return for him. And he still left to go somewhere else, especially considering Charlotte stood behind him at every single turn of his off-the-court problems, and off-the-court problems is putting it mildly. And the fact Charlotte has top three cap space, top five cap space in the NBA and a new ownership group that seems determined to want to win and wanting to keep Miles Bridges around.

So working out that is a big question too. And if they do, Miles Bridges, LaMelo Ball, Brandon Miller, Mark Williams, a top, maybe the number one pick in the draft, a lot of optimism surrounding this organization, more than I can remember going into an off-season for this franchise since I've been the host of this show and we're talking about six years, that being the case. So that's no small thing and something we'll certainly follow over the next few months, over the next few months getting some of those questions answered. But fresh off a trip to Augusta for his 27th tournament covering the Masters, John Dell from the Winston-Salem Journal joins us in studio next. John Dell, Winston-Salem Journal joining us in studio.

We'll get to the actual Scottie Scheffler final round recap of the Masters that you covered yesterday in just a little bit, but you came in here bearing gifts for those watching on YouTube or on Twitch. See, I might need to take this is a new Orioles cap that I have here because Willow the dog wrecked my last O's cap. That better not be an omen for the Orioles.

No, I hope it's not. They won yesterday. Got some Masters gear in here. Look at that. So better keep that away from her too.

Yeah, got to keep the Masters hat away and W.D. I got a shirt. So I got a shirt here.

He came with a lot. There's a pimento cheese sandwich in there. Is that right? Yes. We got a pimento cheese sandwich in here? Yes. Enjoy because they're nasty, but you guys might like them. Masters tea. Pretty good. Masters tea, pretty good stuff from John Dell. You want to give the pimento cheese?

Maybe later in the show. We can give the refrigerator probably we can maybe give the pimento cheese sandwich a try a little bit later on. But you were at Augusta yesterday and one of the things I love about your notebooks that you write for the journal day to day. It's a lot of stuff that's related locally, but there's some stuff that's not so local as well. Let's just hit on some stories. You told us last week that an interest for you was going to be Tiger Woods's future. You heard from Tiger talking about what's next for him.

What did you learn? Well, it's interesting. The USGA still needs to extend an invitation to Tiger for Pinehurst. He's not exempt for Pinehurst. So that is just a formality. The USGA would be crazy not to invite Tiger Woods to the US Open.

So that's coming down the pike. He's going to he hasn't qualified field. He's not going to go try and qualify. He can't play that much. So he'll get an exemption in the open, but he's gearing up. He's gearing up for the majors. And you know, so the only problem with that is I think he's got to play more if he really wants to contend because he didn't he didn't contend obviously this week.

And I think it was his lack of reps and lack of tournament preparation. But he just can't play that much anymore. If he plays Pinehurst. If you were a betting man now that betting is legal in the state of North Carolina.

Send me that cash out, fam. Would you bet that this is the last time he ever plays in North Carolina? The PGA Championship is next year, 25 in Charlotte. So it's going to be at Wells Fargo next year. So I think he might play in that one, too. But it may be close.

He may decide to shut it down. It was funny. I walked out there Sunday morning. I do my normal three hour walk before I could get out on the course. And there was Tiger and Charlie was with him, his son practicing putting. And then he went from the putting green back to the clubhouse. And there was a line, people chasing him.

They're all saying, Tiger, Tiger, Tiger. And Charlie's right next to him. And I said, well, Charlie, how are you doing?

He kind of smirked because everyone's yelling for Tiger. And I asked him how I asked Charlie how he was doing, because, you know, he's just the kid. But yeah, you know, he still moves the needle.

He is the needle. And it was interesting. He played great on Thursday and Friday when the conditions were horrible. And then the conditions were easier on Saturday and Sunday. He didn't play so great. So for him to make the cut was amazing to me, 24 straight. And he played just as well as everybody else on Thursday and Friday.

And then he hit the wall, obviously. John Dell in studio with us here. Did you catch anything from Wills Alatorreis or Cam Young, who both finish tied for ninth? They really like the course. They just need to cut the mistakes, you know, hurt them like everybody else. You just got to be so precise around Augusta National. But, you know, Wills Alatorreis, three masters, three top tens. So he's figured it out a little bit. They just both need to get Cam Young, I think, his three masters. He missed the cut.

The first one tied for sixth last year and tied for ninth this year. So I think they've got the game. It's just a matter of getting that timing right for for Sunday afternoon. Was there there was something I remember you were writing a quote from Will talking about Amen Corner. Yeah, I did a story. I went down Saturday and talked to people just at Amen Corner and had them describe it to me.

And I wrote a story about Amen Corner, about what it means to them. I talked to a guy who did a speed walk from the gate and got in the front row at 12 right there behind the par three. He's a former runner at Indiana, 30 years old, and he speed walked by like 200 people to get that seat. So I wrote a story about Amen Corner and, you know, Will let his dad tell them every time you go across Hogan Bridge, you make sure and look back and see the, you know, see the fans and see what you're because there's no better view than when you turn back and you see, you know, from the other side of it. You know, we've already seen from the front, but so he does that every time he goes. He stops on the bridge and looks over, looks around and just takes it all in. So that's one of his traditions that he does at Amen Corner. I wonder if there's ever a way for John Dale to get to that bridge and see what that view looks like.

I've been there twice when I played, but there were no fans. You turn around and you take pictures and all that stuff and then you keep, you know, I made my triple bogeys both times I played that hole. So it's a hard hole, trust me.

Yeah, I do watch some of these holes. And I think is it the par three fifth that's so brutal that guys generally slip on? The sixth is the hard one. It's high up and you got to hit down to a green that, you know, I think Jimmy Hoff is buried in. But it's very a difficult hole.

They're all tough for me, though. It was the highlight yesterday watching before the round even began was Tiger playing so early in the day that CBS wasn't on the air and Vern Lundquist is sitting in just one of those lawn chairs watching Tiger and then Tiger recognizing it after he finished putting out that hole and shaking his hand. How big of a topic was that on the golf course that this was Vern's last go? Well, I went over looking for him just to say, hey, I mean, I've seen him before. He actually lives in Steamboat Springs, him and Colorado. Yeah, and him and we have friends that live in Steamboat and they actually he actually knows our friends live in Steamboat.

So we always catch up and we talk about Steamboat a little bit. I didn't catch up with him this week, but that was kind of cool that Tiger stopped. I don't know if any other players acknowledged him after they finished the 16th. I was kind of hoping Scottie Scheffler would maybe tip it to him.

And Scottie Scheffler would maybe tip his hat to the booth because he was the last player. That booth is right. It's not near the tee box. It's right beyond the green. Right beyond the green.

It's right there. And so I just think that Vern is such a good guy and he has such one of the greatest calls. Nicholas on 17 and 86, Tiger at 05 on 16, and the Duke game with Christian Leitner and Grant Hill and people forget that, that's one of the greatest college basketball games, if not the greatest of all time.

College football too, voice of the SEC. Did he do the Auburn? He did. He did the kick six game. He's done a little bit of everything and he always made time for people like Josh Graham and John Dell too, which is what makes you an all around good guy.

Well, I hope he has a plan B. I mean, you know, he's only 83. Come on. Yeah, Vince Scully back in the day called games till he was 89, 90 years old. Let's head on some Wake Forest stories here.

We'll get back to golf in a bit. John Dell hanging out with us. So there's a report out that Andrew Carr could be entering the portal. We're going to wait and see if that is the case, but it would fall in line with some of the other transfer portal exits we've seen with Wake, except this would be probably the biggest unexpected blow that Wake Forest had. I don't think they were that heartbroken to lose Boopy Miller.

Hunter Salas declared for the draft, but still opened the door that he could come back. I think they're expecting he's probably going to go. If they lose Andrew Carr, that's the first player that I look at and say Wake really wanted him back and he's going elsewhere if in fact he is leaving.

Well, my only take on that is I know the relationship that Andrew and Steve Forbes have. Would Carr be a case of where he goes in the portal, doesn't like what he sees, and maybe Wake would welcome back? I mean, that can happen. That's not a given. This could be an NIL negotiation. And all of a sudden he says, you know, I might want to come back. And there's always that door that's open, but I know these coaches have to fill these scholarships, so maybe that's not an option on the table.

But I just think that maybe he was going to explore it if he is in the portal and maybe come back if he doesn't like what he sees. But that remains to be seen, I guess. Yeah. They want, we put together the list a few weeks ago. The guys that you really want to have back if you're Wake. It's not a long list, but it's Hunter Salas, if you can get him, Aethon Reed, Andrew Carr, Cam Hildreth, Parker Fredrickson, and that's the list.

It's not a long list. Those are the guys you hope to keep with the NIL investment that you get from folks like Mitch Shaw and company. And Marcus Marion's coming back, I think. I haven't heard anything from him. I think Marion is coming back.

I haven't heard anything on that front either. While we're talking about Wake, the D1 baseball poll came out today. Wake is up two more spots to number 12 after taking two out of three. Wear WD at Boston College. Number five. Boston College.

Number five. My buttons are a little close together over here. Sorry about that.

New mouse. Well, they got Florida State coming, right? Oh, yeah.

Okay. So this is a good time to make an announcement. So Friday, Wake plays Florida State, number eight team in the country, going to be in Winston-Salem, close to a top 10 clash.

We will be doing our show from the couch on Friday. So we're very excited about that. Since being swept by Carolina, how long ago is that now?

That's 15 days ago. Wake Forest is seven and one. One loss over the weekend to BC. Wake now 12th in the country.

Nick Kurtz. He's got 100 home runs in the last four games. Is that what it is? I think that is. Stupid number. Exactly. Stupid number.

Exactly what he's done so far. He has 12 home runs in his last nine games. Wow. Wow. Is there fantasy baseball for college?

I mean, geez, he'd be leading the league. Do you guys play fantasy baseball? I don't. It's been several years since we used to play. I used to, yeah. A little bit.

I played back in the Ken Griffey Jr. days, and he would get hurt every time I had him. Oh, devastating. Busy weekend. A lot to get to.

A lot to recap. And the most efficient way we know how to do that is with a segment we call Graham's Grades. Every week is a test for your favorite sports teams. Is this a test? Who passed the test? I don't know.

Who dropped the ball? I don't know. Josh Graham has the answers.

What? Time for Graham's Grades. A, B, C, D, F. Pretty easy to understand this.

We grade things that we saw over the weekend by attaching a letter grade to it. Let's get to it. A, Wake Forest baseball's big two. Nick Kurtz, Chase Burns.

This is nuts, W.D. All the attention Nick Kurtz is getting is warranted. 12 home runs in nine games. Wake Forest winning seven of its last games.

Winning seven of its last eight since being swept by Carolina on its home diamond at the couch. By the way, we're going to be doing our show when Florida State, the eighth ranked team in the country, visits the couch on Friday. So feel free if you're going to that game to come on by and say hello.

We'd love to see you. That's crazy enough. And I feel that's getting the appropriate amount of attention. Are you following what Chase Burns has done so far this year?

I have not. Chase Burns is around 110 strikeouts this year. Last year, Rhett Louder and Josh Hartle both broke the single season record for strikeouts while being teammates, like the program record. Chase Burns is on pace to break those records set before they even get to the ACC tournament.

Insane. Maybe the best pitching prospect in America, if not number one, certainly number two. Wake baseball's big two in A. B. Charlotte FC at home was going back and forth with our guy, Will Pelagic, over the weekend.

Willy P on the call along with Jess Charming on WSJS for Charlotte FC matches. They beat Toronto three to two in four home matches this year. Charlotte's record, 3-0-1. Undefeated, never lost. Charlotte FC, shout out to them for the win over the weekend. C. Kentucky's press conference yesterday. It's pretty cool that you sell out a press conference in a big building like Rupp Arena, and it's a Sunday afternoon during the final round of the Masters.

That's pretty darn cool. But the 1996 team on the tour bus coming out with the trophy. Who's that for?

I'll tell you who it isn't for. Recruits. 1996. Today's recruit was born 10 years after that championship. You think they care that you won a title mark, Pope?

Here's how I know they don't. A day after that big press conference where it's all sold out, the top recruit left on the board for Kentucky signing class said, I'm good. And he got out of his national letter of intent. So yeah, it's pretty cool. It's a cool spectacle. It's very cool to guys like Josh Graham and Will Dalton. But to the people that matter most, guys who are trying to transfer out of your program, right now, and players that you want to come in as highly touted recruits, probably didn't do as much for them as you might think. D. The Charlotte Hornets season.

21 and 61. The mellow ball couldn't stay healthy. But at least Brandon Miller hit. But even then, even with Brandon Miller hitting, even with Brandon Miller hitting, does it not sting when you see what Victor Webb and Yama does and wonder, oh man, we were one pick away from getting that. Like Wimby was, San Antonio's trying to tank. Look at the guys he's surrounding, or San Antonio surrounding Wim and Yama with in these games. He beat the Nuggets who were trying to win to get the number one spot by himself with a bunch of scrubs. Like Devante Graham was the one hitting the key shots for San Antonio alongside Victor Webb and Yama. In the last month, there have not been 10 players in the league better than Wimby has been. Not among rookies. In the league, he's getting all NBA consideration. Will he get it?

Probably not. But man, that's part of the reason why this is a D, because while Brandon Miller's good and you should celebrate that, you were so close to getting Wimby. But at least you do have that positive piece and what they did at the deadline was positive too. F. This one hurts to say, but I'll say it anyway. This year's Masters. Let's think about this. You're telling me that there's no drama on the back nine whatsoever. The guy who was heavily favored to win the tournament wins it by multiple shots. And there's only two of the World Golf Rankings, top 10 in contention on the final day. Tiger Woods is shooting the worst score of anybody that made it to the weekend. That's probably grounds for an F. You look at the final winning score like Scottie Scheffler is barely scraping double digits under par. Now, I don't love it when somebody's making a mockery of the course and you're shooting 22, 23 under par to win. But there is some middle ground there. I'd like to see multiple guys shooting 10 under for a tournament.

13, 14 under par to win a tournament. Those are the types that you really like. And you like it to be close.

I don't know. Just wasn't the most compelling Masters. After Verne got done with his call in 16, I fell asleep.

I fell asleep for about 30 to 45 minutes and then woke up as they were going into Butler cabin and Jim Nance is trying to stall on television for five minutes. But that is Gramm's grades for this week. This is legitimately exciting. Nate Bargatze, one of the best comics going right now from Tennessee, the Tennessee kid. He is coming to the Greensboro Coliseum.

He's hailed as the quote, nicest guy in stand up. You could get your tickets. There are seats that just don't fit in. There are seats that just were made available this week that you can capitalize on.

Go to the Greensboro Coliseum website or Ticketmaster, Nate Bargatze. I love how I have bullet points. I love Nate Bargatze, so I don't need the bullet points. But one of the bullet points, I'm not kidding, says very funny guy.

I could confirm that. He is very funny. He is the son. This is actually the name, I think, of his first special that he is the son of a clown. His dad used to be a clown for kids' birthday parties and things of that nature.

And the cover of the album is him as a kid posing for a picture with his dad in the clown outfit. That's kind of cool. One of the great stand up bits is him talking about church league basketball. It's outstanding.

I will probably be at this show, I imagine, on Sunday, May the 12th, less than a month away from Nate Bargatze coming to the Triad. Speaking of funny, W.D. sent a text yesterday. Oh, God. We're doing this.

So funny that I have to share it with you. So my boss's boss, one of the guys who runs things here at WSJS is a man by the name of Mike Carbone. You might remember Mike Carbone from singing Rhinestone Cowboy with us sometimes, putting up Ohio State propaganda in the studio and mean things about Jim Harbaugh or whatnot. He is an Ohio sports fan. W.D. 's a Yankee fan.

Yes. The Yankees played the Guardians over the weekend. And I'm just watching the Masters hanging out yesterday.

And I get a text message and it's in a group text with me and Mike. And it's from W.D. and all it is, inexplicably, a member of a Cincinnati baseball team with a bird sweeping.

So I immediately look. Did the Yankees sweep the Guardians this weekend? If so, that's impressive. I think the Yankees are the only team with more wins than the Guardians in the American League.

And then I look it up and I see that the Guardians won in a walk off. Oh, great. He's in here.

Michael just walked in here and he's got Guardians gear and Ohio State gear. It's great. So thank you for that.

Yeah, thanks. So I look up the score. And the Guardians won in a walk off.

So I respond, number one, who is that? Did you just type sweep into the gift part of the text chain and click on the first thing you saw for the Cincinnati guy? Also, you guys just lost in the 10th inning.

And W.D. responds with four texts straight with one word, Yankees, sweat, Cleveland, ha ha ha. And we had to tell him, you might want to check the score again and then we get a text with W.D. Oh, no, that's funny on two accounts that you're the guy that's texting just first thing that pops up in the it wasn't the first thing that popped up. Oh, I'm going to click on this Cincinnati baseball player with a broom.

I did a little scrolling and then I got to them. You know what is baseball? I'm going to pick that.

And then you double down. I know. What do you think we were talking about? I didn't know.

You guys just lost Yankees, sweat Cleveland. See, I was in the middle of doing my taxes and I get that's the funny part of it. No, the funny part is that you, of course, procrastinate to the last day. Shut up.

I knew you. That's the most W.D. part about this entire thing. It's hilarious. That's almost as funny as the Craig Kimbrel texts.

The Kimbrel texts are the yeah, they're good. When the Orioles bring Craig Kimbrel into close games. I just I get whoever's with me. It was someone in our church group yesterday that was at our home and I got him to take a picture of me. He didn't know anything about baseball, so I didn't have I didn't explain it.

Nothing at all. Hey, can you just take this picture? And it's just me doing the Craig Kimbrel pose. Yep. And I text it to my Orioles group chat and to W.D. And I appreciate that.

That's what I do. Yeah. Not close to as funny as W.D.

's sweep meme and then double down when his team actually lost in a walk off. Fantastic. Let's get the show going.

It's The Drive with Josh Graham. Best bets on the way. Hornets assistant Greensboro Swarm head coach Jordan Surinkamp joins us 15 minutes from now, a day after the Hornets season ends, 21 and 61. Our thanks to friend of the show, John Dell, who just finished covering the Masters for his 27th straight year. He brought us some gear, got my Masters hat on, got W.D. a shirt, brought us some Masters trail mix into our studio, a Masters cup, Masters water. He really hooked us up. And we greatly appreciate that. He also brought us the Masters famous pimento cheese sandwiches that go for a buck fifty on the course. And we do not know if John Dell got this on Thursday or got this on Sunday, yesterday, final round. So here is the Masters famous pimento cheese sandwich that we're going to give a try right now.

W.D. and I, you still haven't opened your packaging. I wanted to give everybody the experience. OK, I don't know if this pimento cheese sandwich is from the first round, four days old, or if it's one day old. But I love pimento cheese. I'm going to give it a shot. Mm hmm, tastes good.

That's some good pimento cheese, I tell you. I thought this was going to be terrible. I was a little nervous, but like I would like to think he would he would know better than this is really good.

I've never been to Augusta. All right. Oh, good. But if I do, I'm going to give it a try. I'm going to give it a try. I'm going to give it a try. I'm going to give it a try. I'm going to give it a try. I'm going to give it a try. I'm going to give it a try. But if I do, wow, that is good.

I'm going to have about 12 of these. I kind of hate that I doubted John Dell. Very good. So thanks to John Dell. Long time reporter from the Winterson. Might need a drink.

Yeah, you do that. That's got some good bite to it, I tell you. While you finish up your sandwich, let's hand out some best bets. Not the greatest payout from the Masters over the weekend, but it did pay out. Scotty Sheffler, we handed out a sprinkle on Scotty Sheffler or Hideki Matsuyama plus 500. Obviously, Sheffler won the tournament. We had three top 20 finishes that we handed out. Corey Connors didn't get there, but Cam Young and Wills Alatoris, the weight guys, both finished tied for ninth. So that paid out as well. Overall, pretty successful Masters for us that we felt pretty good at.

Us that we felt pretty good about. Let's focus on tonight's slate, though, starting with the New York Rangers. The Canes need the Rangers to lose in regulation tonight. So am I betting on the Rangers to lose?

Absolutely not. The Rangers, you could take them on the puck line if you want, laying one and a half goals. You could take them on the money line if you will.

If you do that, you might want to parlay it with something to get better value. More on that in a second. The Rangers are at home. The Rangers have a lot at stake here. If they win, not only do you have the Metro Division title, but you clench home ice for the entire playoffs. You're not going to let that slip on your home ice against a team with the third worst record in the Eastern Conference. Give me the Rangers. You can lay them on the puck line, or you could just take them on the money line. That is the first bet for the night.

And if you want something to pair it with. May I interest you in a Baltimore Orioles bet for tonight? Baltimore lay the run and a half. They're facing the fourth place team in the AL Central right now. That being the Minnesota Twins.

The Twins, here's what I've come to learn about them, W.D. They're really bad against lefties. They are 28th in baseball right now in hitting lefties. Cole Irvin has struggled out of the gate for Baltimore on the mound, but he's doing a good start against the team last year that he only allowed one run against in I think seven or eight innings the last time he faced them. So he has a history of success against the Twins. The Twins struggle against lefties. The games in Baltimore tonight lay them. Orioles minus one and a half on the run line. We're pairing that with the New York Rangers to win on the money line tonight.

Get that cash out, fam. There you go. W.D., where are you at on your pimento cheese sandwich? Got a little bit more, like about a third of it left. I think it's pretty much done.

Yeah, it's really good. Probably gonna finish the rest of this during dinner so I don't spoil my dinner. That's the plan. You know what you don't want spoiled? The foundation of your home, W.D.

No, you do not. You don't because the cold days, they're behind us. Spring brings rain showers. Higher risk of water entering your basement. If your basement is showing any foundational signs of problems. Condensation, wet floors or walls, musty smells, things like that.

Things that I expected to see on this pimento cheese sandwich but I have not. Tariel Basement System can help before it's too late. They'll work with you to create a customized plan so your basement needs to stay dry this spring but also year round. Visit tarielbasementsystems.com now for a free inspection and no pressure quote. Tariel Basement Systems will inspect your whole home to find the cause of the problem and fix it once and for all. Tariel Basement Systems.

There's a reason why they are the trusted local experts. All done. Don't speak into the microphone with your mouth full. Rude. What would your mom think? I don't know what she thinks right now. She's probably upset that I ate that sandwich. You're doing it again. I'm sorry.

You asked the question. Duke's roster continues to take shape. Over the weekend, Jalen Blakes entered the portal. Caleb Foster, he's returning along with Tyrese Proctor. What's my source on that? Well, Tyrese Proctor and Caleb Foster were on Ryan Young's Duke Basketball Podcast and said so.

Here's Caleb starting that conversation. I chose the school. I chose Duke and I'm a thousand percent committed to Duke and I mean, yeah, I can't really speak for the others. So like, I can't really see myself playing anywhere else.

So I'm a loyal guy. Yeah, thanks. I feel like it'd be crazy to like go to a new school and like learn everyone like just relationships you have to build again. And then like, how was it for you? Like difficult. Yeah, basically that is really different.

It's like starting over. Yeah. Jayden Shoot. He could enter the portal too. We don't know about Jeremy Roach's status yet. So Duke's already in a position where it can go portal hunting. Ideally, they'd want to go and get a couple of guys. Right now they can only get one.

Blake's spot puts them at 12 scholarships. That's assuming Roach is back and Shoot are back, but it would stun me if both those guys return. Maybe both leave and you can find three portal guys if you want to. Roach, it's hard to say if he's gone for sure, because is Caleb Foster so in that he would settle for coming off the bench again?

I don't know. We shall see. Is a roster spot more valuable than Jeremy Roach coming back given how desirable of a destination Duke's going to be?

Only John Shire can answer that question, and there are difficult discussions that need to happen if the answer to that is Duke is better off if Jeremy Roach moves on. If you haven't already, make sure you're subscribed to our YouTube channel. Search The Drive with Josh Graham. iTunes, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and Anchor is where the podcast is.

You can find, if you missed John Dell in studio with us for a half hour earlier, you can find that on the pod. I also, WD, in addition to having a new Masters hat, got a new Orioles hat, too. Yeah, because Willow the dog chewed your other one. That's exactly right. So I'm going to make a quick uniform change when I welcome in Jordan Surinkamp, head coach of the Swarm. Thank you. Good color. New O's gear. If we're going to bet on the O's tonight, better be wearing O's gear.

Sounds about right, but I will be wearing my Masters stuff. All throughout the year. Thank you to John Dell for bringing all this stuff into us. But make sure, again, you're subscribed to the YouTube channel and to our podcast channel as well. Greensboro Swarm head coach and Hornets assistant, Jordan Surinkamp, helps us put a bow on this Hornet season that ended yesterday, next on the drive. The Charlotte Hornets season ended yesterday in Cleveland, so we thought it'd be a good time to catch up with Greensboro Swarm head coach, Jordan Surinkamp, who ever since the Swarm season ended has been working with the Hornets. Jordan now joins us.

All right, paint a picture for me, Jordan. What's been your role in Charlotte over the last month? The biggest thing is really just being available and helping. You know, when you get reinserted back into an NBA team after being gone for six months, besides my occasional visits to Charlotte for games, it's really just being available, being a fly on the wall, helping where you can, because everybody's in such a routine at that point. I do work with the young guys while I'm here, so that's kind of my main focus is helping my main focus is obviously they started to play a little bit more as the season kind of came to an end. But, you know, when I first got back, they were pretty consistently out of the rotation. So just getting them extra work, bringing them in on off days and just making sure that they're keeping up their development focus and, you know, the plan that the organization has for them is kind of the big piece.

And then just tying a bow on the Greensboro season and putting together some stuff that I'll present with the front office and organization at some point. Since you coached in the summer league last summer, I think you are the perfect person to answer this. What's the biggest difference in Brandon Miller's game last July versus the player you've watched close the season? Yeah, I think just his level of comfort in so many different positions on the floor.

And obviously he's been asked to do a lot just with the injuries and stuff that have happened here in Charlotte. So it was a benefit for him just because he had the ball in his hands more. He was being a primary scorer, a decision maker, you know, guarding the other team's best players. Like all of that stuff was put on his plate, which was obviously really good for his development. But I think just him becoming more comfortable in those roles, becoming more aggressive, finding his spots on the floor where he's, again, the most comfortable, all of that. And I think one thing that he came into summer league with that he never lost is his just willingness to make the right play.

And I think that's something that was really big early on. You know, he's not sitting there staring at the box scores, looking at stats or anything like that. He's just a basketball player. He wants to win. He wants to find ways to impact winning. And, you know, just him doing anything that he can to maximize our opportunities and chances to do that is what he's willing to do.

But definitely it's just his comfort level, how to be a pro, taking care of his body, playing in as many games and the durability that he was able to show in his rookie year, I think was great and a testament to him. You mentioned IQ. You mentioned decision making. If you were to limit yourself to just one or two traits with him and were being joined by Greensboro Swarm head coach Jordan Suringham, what separates Brandon Miller from most young players you see come into the league? The first thing is just his natural instincts.

So I think when you talk about the decision making piece, it's something that, you know, even in Greensboro, we focus on quite a bit. It's something that can be taught. But there are definitely just things that guys just have naturally. And he is a natural, instinctual player that is really good in a lot of different areas.

Give me an example. You say natural instinct. You're watching the tape. You're chopping it up and you watch something he does and you're like, well, I can't coach that. I'm a coach. I can coach a lot.

I can't coach that. Yeah. I mean, it's just little things. I mean, it's him as a scorer.

Right. Being able to maneuver and manipulate pick and rolls for him to get to spots that he wants to on the floor. It's him defensively being able to anticipate things that are coming and being able to execute coverages at a high level based on anticipation. It's the playmaking piece. It's the passing where you're coming off the pick and roll.

And based on film, you know that the weak side is going to rotate a certain way. But he's able to come off with one dribble and make the pass instead of two or three. Right.

Like those are the instinctual things that can be taught. But for him to be doing them as a rookie is really, really impressive. And I think that's, again, a testament to his IQ, you know, the work that the coaching staff has done with him in Charlotte and then obviously, yeah, his natural ability has just been really impressive. I don't know if you know this, but we are the longest running sports talk show in the history of the Triad. We've been going since the summer of 2018, July of 2018. I think we have talked about before that it was the same summer that you've started with the Hornets organization, I believe. To me, as somebody who's followed this team from the outside all that time, this is the most optimistic Hornets fans have been going into an offseason because of the young stars on this roster and the moves they made at the deadline, adding guys that aren't going to be leaving this offseason unless traded.

You have guys that, you know, have multi years left on the contract or younger players as well that have high upside. But you're on the inside. How would you describe the optimism in the building?

I think you hit it right on the nail. I think there's a lot of optimism and a lot of positivity, obviously, situations arise that are out of your control, the injury stuff. You know, those things are uncontrollable in a lot of senses. But you do have a very bright young core that is obviously talented on the floor. Obviously, we can get a ton of opportunity to see them all together at once, but it's definitely there. And I think the other thing from the inside that is really valuable that people may overlook or may not know about is they all really enjoy being around each other, whether it's LaMelo, Brandon Mark, Nick Richards, you know, Miles Bridges, obviously talking about him wanting to stay in Charlotte, like all of those guys get along off the floor as well. And they're super close and tight men. I think that's just really important as well as, you know, they're all selfless. They all want to win and do things that impact winning. Like we talked about with Brandon, all of those guys are that way.

They're competitors. And I think those are areas that lead to a lot of excitement for the future. You know, obviously, Brandon came into his own, you know, when Melo's healthy, putting him alongside of Melo is going to be really exciting. Your young, big, you know, Mark Williams and then obviously, you know, Miles with the durability that he was able to show this year and the way he came back and played a lot of reason to be excited.

And it's just, you know, a bright future ahead for this organization and looking forward to seeing what that looks like. Greensboro Swarm head coach Jordan Sorenkamp's with us. I've got this wasn't reported by WOJ, but I've got the information, some inside intel that Jordan Sorenkamp during All-Star Weekend got engaged. What? See, I broke this story.

WOJ, he might get on it later. I don't know. But what was the story? How did we pop the question? What was what was the plan there? Yeah. So we wanted to go skiing.

I'd never been skiing in my life. And that's a conversation that we're going to have to have for another day because it did not go as I had envisioned it. However, the engagement part did. So we were just outside of Asheville, got an Airbnb, went to a really nice dinner in the city and was able to connect with a local winery and was able to kind of use the after hours of the winery as my opportunity.

And rose petals, candles everywhere, got some customized bottles of wine with our photos on it. So, yeah, it was good. Well, it was good. And then got to the moment, got on my knee, had everything I wanted to say in my mind, completely spaced all of it. And she still said yes.

So here we are. I can relate to that. See, I got married two years ago, got engaged at Myrtle Beach. I had like a family member who was in photography who was there for the weekend that my wife had never met before. And I completely bypassed her. I didn't see her. My wife saw her before I did. And that actually kind of helped me because she suspected something. And then once I blew past her, she's like, oh, I guess that wasn't it.

And then it turned, we eventually got in position and it all worked out just fine. I thought you were going to tell me you were at All-Star weekend considering your Indiana ties. I just assumed you were in. Yeah, actually, I stayed away. I have not been to an All-Star weekend since it was here in Charlotte. I try to enjoy, I spend enough time around basketball. So that was my time to get away. And yeah, as much coaching as I've done in my life, that moment was probably the most nervous I've ever been. I bet. My honeymoon was, part of my honeymoon was in Asheville. We stayed at the Grove Park Inn.

That was fantastic. Where are we at in the wedding planning process? Yeah, so she's a rock star. So she's given me a lot of time just to kind of figure out the work stuff, let the season come to an end. But the season ended yesterday. And she's already texting, calling, she's in Atlanta right now. Thursday morning becomes our first stop on the wedding venue trip.

So season ends. She's been patient with me up to this point, but it's time to put it in full gear. And we got to figure out a date. We have all that to still figure out.

But yeah, one step at a time. Let's actually close with basketball because I can't pass up the transition possibility here. Going from scouting wedding venues to now scouting prospects, who knows?

Maybe for the number one pick, you're going to have pretty good odds at getting that. Paint a picture for the audience, what the scouting process looks like behind the scenes, how many scouts the Hornets have, what your role in it is. Yeah, so I mean, we have full time scouts. That's their job. They're around the country. They're around the world, you know, and they're, you know, so I mean, there's tons of them, you know, guys work remotely, but this is their full time job. You know, so it's like you see this Hornet season going on and everything that's happening with us in Greensboro. And they're just at college games or at pro games overseas.

They're everywhere you can imagine. And you know, they're really just doing their best to evaluate. That's what it is, you know, evaluating them on the floor, calling every person you could imagine that has any connection with any of the prospects, the amount of Intel and hard work that they put in to just put together some type of draft profile that really allows you to get the best look at what an individual can possibly end up being, what kind of person they are off the floor, how they treat people.

I mean, you name it. That's what's being evaluated. And that's, you know, people say the cliches all the time about that stuff, but it's true. Everything that they do on and off the floor is evaluated from a prospect standpoint. We'll go through the pre draft process, usually near or around after the combined ending ending, and then it just becomes the process of evaluating, having those meetings upstairs.

That's much more front office and scouting centric than it is coaching. But you know, obviously being around the pre draft process, I ran the pre draft process a couple of years ago myself. It's really fun. You get a chance to bring guys into your building and get a chance to really get to know them and just watch them work out in person. And, you know, a lot of the individuals that don't end up getting drafted end up becoming exhibit tens or two ways or G League players. So that's been a good that's been a good thing for me is you get all these guys and you see and get to talk to them a little bit and then, you know, they end up playing in the G League or potentially with you in the G League. So it's an exciting time and just obviously building to the young future and bright future that Charlotte has is always a good time.

Last thing for you. Jordan Zernkant with us. Putting your analyst hat on to look at the playoffs. It sure feels like the East is Boston's to win, but that's not the way the West is being presented with the champs and Denver OKC getting the number one seed in the West after all. Do you see the West as being wide open or should more respect be given to the Nuggets?

I think it's still wide open. I mean, if you want a championship, then you have every right to defend it and you have all the respect in the world from all these other teams. You know, winning back to back is one of the toughest things to do, which is why even what UConn just did in the NCAA tournament is really, really impressive. You know, I think Denver still has the best starting five in basketball right now in a lot of senses. You know, have a lot of areas of weakness, which as you get into playoff prep and you start playing seven game series, those are the things that you really have to try to hunt out. So they're obviously up there, but it's going to be really exciting. I mean, even yesterday with all the games on the line and all the navigating of the seating and everything like I think that stuff's all going to carry over into the playoffs. And, you know, you may even get a first round Boston, Philly playoff series, which is wilder Boston, Miami. You know, something like that.

One of them have to lose the playing game and then they got another chance. So it's going to be interesting and it's hard to really count teams out. But yeah, this is the best time of the year when it comes to that stuff.

And it's fun to watch the adjustments that are made game to game. Good luck with wedding planning. Maybe we can catch you sometime during the playoffs to pick your brain on all things NBA. Thank you so much for your visit throughout the year as well. Jordan Sorenkamp, thanks for the time. Absolutely. We'll see you guys.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-04-15 21:29:17 / 2024-04-15 21:53:34 / 24

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