Statistical Analysis. Humor. Knicks.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

2010 Report Card: Tracy McGrady

When a change occurs it always takes the mainstream a bit of time to adjust to the new idea. I recall watching a Knick game near the end of the year with the announcers talking about whether or not McGrady would be coming back next year. One of them (not sure who it was) said that McGrady would have to accept being a second star on a team.

At this time, I’ll chose to reveal McGrady’s similarity scores before I continue.

Similarity Scores:

z-Sum FLName Year Tm PER TS eFG PTS ORB TRB AST STL BLK TOV
.000 Tracy McGrady 2010 TOT 12.2 46.6 42.1 13.1 1.2 5.0 5.3 0.8 0.7 2.4
.090 Travis Best 2003 MIA 11.2 47.3 42.7 12.0 0.5 2.9 5.1 0.9 0.1 2.1
.099 Henry Bibby 1980 PHI 11.1 49.1 41.0 13.1 1.1 3.7 5.4 1.1 0.1 2.6
.110 Troy Hudson 2007 MIN 10.8 48.3 45.1 13.1 0.5 3.1 4.7 0.9 0.1 2.6
.158 Bimbo Coles 1999 GSW 14.8 49.6 44.9 12.9 0.6 3.3 6.3 1.3 0.3 2.3
.162 Bob Sura 2004 TOT 16.2 51.0 43.8 12.9 2.2 7.1 5.0 1.3 0.3 2.3
.166 John Johnson 1978 TOT 11.9 45.3 41.5 16.1 2.0 6.1 4.2 0.8 0.4 3.3
.171 Damon Stoudamire 2004 POR 14.8 50.8 47.7 12.7 0.6 3.6 5.8 1.1 0.1 2.1
.174 Brad Miller 2007 SAC 13.5 50.8 45.9 11.5 1.6 8.1 4.5 0.8 0.8 2.2
.174 Doug Overton 2000 BOS 10.5 46.6 42.9 12.7 1.2 2.7 4.4 0.8 0.0 1.7
.176 Jim McMillian 1979 POR 11.9 49.9 44.6 10.7 2.1 5.1 4.3 1.3 0.4 2.1

I know it takes a little time for perception to catch up with reality, but does that look like a list of players that should be questioning whether or not they are the second star of a team? To me that group should be worrying if they can keep their job as second string point guards. It’s been a long time since McGrady has been a top tier player, but there’s no doubt that he fell off Sandy Alomar Cliff years ago. Below is a list of his comparables by age, which reminds me of one those don’t use drugs posters.

Age z-Sum FLName Year Tm PER TS eFG PTS ORB TRB AST STL BLK TOV
19 .244 Kevin Garnett 1996 MIN 15.8 52.2 49.7 13.1 2.7 7.9 2.3 1.4 2.1 1.7
20 .121 Kevin Garnett 1997 MIN 18.2 53.7 50.2 15.7 2.3 7.4 2.8 1.3 2.0 2.1
21 .098 Kobe Bryant 2000 LAL 21.7 54.6 48.8 21.2 1.5 5.9 4.6 1.5 0.9 2.6
22 .072 LeBron James 2007 CLE 24.5 55.2 50.7 24.1 0.9 5.9 5.3 1.4 0.6 2.8
23 .145 LeBron James 2008 CLE 29.1 56.8 51.8 26.8 1.6 7.0 6.4 1.6 1.0 3.0
24 .121 Kobe Bryant 2003 LAL 26.2 55.0 48.3 26.0 1.1 6.0 5.1 1.9 0.7 3.0
25 .053 Kobe Bryant 2004 LAL 23.7 55.1 46.8 22.9 1.5 5.3 4.9 1.6 0.4 2.5
26 .114 Paul Pierce 2004 BOS 19.4 51.7 44.1 21.3 0.8 6.1 4.8 1.5 0.6 3.5
27 .175 Grant Hill 2000 DET 24.5 56.5 50.1 24.7 1.3 6.4 5.0 1.3 0.6 3.1
28 .083 Jamal Mashburn 2001 CHH 17.5 49.3 45.0 18.4 1.1 6.9 5.0 1.0 0.2 2.5
29 .088 Derek Anderson 2004 POR 15.1 49.9 44.0 13.8 0.5 3.6 4.5 1.3 0.1 1.8
30 .090 Travis Best 2003 MIA 11.2 47.3 42.7 12.0 0.5 2.9 5.1 0.9 0.1 2.1

You might note that at age 27 his most similar player is Grant Hill, but a score of .175 means they’re not very close. Actually McGrady rates close to these players because of his high usage. From ages 21-28 he averaged more than 21.1 pts/36, however his efficiency has been dropping since age 23. Usually guys with TS% south of 52% don’t get to take enough shots to average 20pts/36, but McGrady has managed that feat 3 times in his career (2006-2008). Speaking of his shooting efficiency…

McGrady-TS%

I added the red line, since the league average for TS% is around 54%. T-Mac had a very promising career, capping with a TS% of 56.4% as a 23 year old. A player’s career usually arcs up, levels off, then descends. But McGrady’s drops sharply and early at the peak, giving it the appearance of a mountain not the typical bell curve. If you looked at his career graph at age 23 and applied the normal career path, you’d think he’d be a perennial All Star. But as you can see that’s season was the exception, not the norm. It’s a shame, because McGrady is an exceptional passer and a capable rebounder. And he’s always been able to get to the line. Poor shot selection and an inconsistent three point shot (he’s been over 34% only once in the last 7 seasons) has kept him from achieving true greatness.

I had hoped that McGrady would benefit from a reduction in shot attempts upon arriving in New York. But even when he cut his FGA/36 to 12.6, T-Mac put up the lowest TS% of his career (46.6%). You know your career is over when you’re a former All Star trying to beat out Chris Duhon for a starting job, and you fail. Probably some team will sign him to a minor contract this year, I just hope it isn’t New York.

Report Card (5 point scale):
Offense: 1
Defense: 2
Teamwork: 3
Rootability: 2
Performance/Expectations: 1

Final Grade: F

52 comments on “2010 Report Card: Tracy McGrady

  1. stratomatic

    I never understood the optimism that D’Antoni and Walsh expressed about McGrady.

    He was already on a clear decline before surgery.

    How could you expect him to be anywhere close to what he once was after surgery and further into the age where players naturally start declining anyway?

    It’s not impossible that he’s a little better next year than he was with the Knicks if he get into better shape, but at best he’s going to be a filler.

  2. mase

    the optimism was about clearing cap space.

    I read Lebronx doesnt need a PG to play alongside(ie. derrick rose) since he is such a good passer. not sure I agree but its a nice thought

  3. Ted Nelson

    Nice analysis. Very thorough.

    Definitely worrying if Walshtoni thought T-Mac could become an All-NBA player again, and just as worrying if they ever thought he deserved all the All-NBA teams he made (7). I say “if” because while they sold the trade that way, maybe it was just a pill they wanted to swallow to unload the Jeffries contract.

    I would ammend the announcer’s comment and say that if T-Mac is willing to bust his ass this offseason and be a team’s 8th or 9th man maybe 7th (not second star), T-Mac can be valuable again. Big if, but things were so chaotic after the trade deadline that I felt it was hard to get a real read on what Sergio or T-Mac could bring next season. I mean who would have thought that Sergio’s ast% would be a career low playing for D’Antoni, I expected the opposite. D’Antoni was running the offense through his Center, putting his SG on the other team’s PF defensively… if we didn’t have the offseason to look forward to it would have felt a lot like Larry Brown.
    With his passing, possible veteran leadership, and a return to his career scoring efficiency (still a weak 52%, but passable) maybe T-Mac can be valuable for 25 mpg. In fairness to him he is a career .337 3p shooter and the one time in the last 7 seasons he broke 34% was in 08-09 when he shot .376 from 3 in 117 attempts. If he can hit 38% 3s, pass well, and not get totally embarrassed on D then you have to think D’Antoni can use him. The biggest question is whether he can actually stay healthy for a whole season. The other question is whether he’s a team player. I sort of assume he’ll get the vet’s min–which I believe costs nothing to the team but a roster spot since it’s actually paid by the league or player’s association or something–but maybe some team throws part of its MLE at him. I doubt that. Since the Knicks are going to have like 11 open roster spots to fill with that cap space and 2 2nd rounders… I might take the risk T-Mac gets it together if it’s at the vet’s min. If the Knicks don’t do some big things in the offseason he might prefer the vet’s min elsewhere, though. Maybe take Marquis Daniels’ spot in Boston.

  4. iserp

    “I never understood the optimism that D’Antoni and Walsh expressed about McGrady.”

    Well, they weren’t going to say “we did for the cap space”. Saying nice things is the way to sell T-shirts, keep the MSG entertained with the new addition, and put the team in a position to resign T-Mac in the case he came back healthy.

    T-Mac is a really good player and age shouldn’t be a factor yet (he shouldn’t have ‘lost a step’ due to age). The problem is that his injuries are a big concern, and you don’t know if he ever will be healthy again. He was really good, and although he relied on athleticism, he has a lot of talent and a wide range of offensive movements (+ his passing).

    You can take the risk of signing him to a 1 year contract. The problem is not the cap space he takes, but the time on the court. He is still a star and will demand time. Even if he is not 100% (or 50%), he will be given playing time to regain his former shape. That can hurt the development and chemistry of the team.

    On the other hand, if he is healthy next season, he could be worth much more than the Joe Johnsons/Childress/Salmons/…. of the world, at a bargain price; and i think he is really worth the gamble if we miss on 2 maxes (but then, he might go somewhere where he has a greater chance to succeed). Let’s say the best we can do in FA is to sign Bosh (or Boozer/Amare) and resign Lee. There are not that many (good) teams that will offer a roster spot to T-Mac. Maybe he will sign for a year with us, specially if offer him something better than the vet’s minimum. What are we going to do with the rest of the cap anyway? if we sign somebody, we would be out of the Carmelo Anthony sweepstakes next year. This way, we would have near the max on 2011 (or perhaps the max if the salary cap raises).

    T-Mac has said he doesn’t care about money, but he might want the MLE just for ‘respect’; he might distrust a team that only offers the minimum to him, he’d rather go to any other team that appears more interested in him. And he will take into account what Walsh has done for him this year.

    All in all, he is still a gamble that we should only take if we miss on 2 legit max or near max players.

  5. Z

    Good analysis Mike. Only thing I’d change in the grade is “rootablity”. I was definitely rooting for McGrady to succeed when he got here. He came in and said all the right things (“I’ve made enough money for me and my kids to be set for life so I’ll play for free next year” (paraphrase)), and then had a great first game. It’s too bad he really didn’t have the physical ability to really contribute much after that. It especially too bad if Walsh was expecting that he would.

    “they weren’t going to say “we did for the cap space”. Saying nice things is the way to sell T-shirts, keep the MSG entertained with the new addition, and put the team in a position to resign T-Mac in the case he came back healthy.”

    It would have been funny if they started selling Cap Space’s jersey instead of McGrady’s.

  6. stratomatic

    The reason I quoted the “optimism” is that initially some people weren’t very enthusiastic about giving up Hill AND picks just for “extra” cap space (we already had a good deal of space). Part of the way Walsh sold it was that he thought there was a chance McGrady could become a very useful piece next year. In fact, he said he never would have given up that much EXCEPT that he though there was a good chance TMAC could contribute next year. Maybe it was just a sales job, but it sounded more like an honest evalution and hope that TMAC was a kicker in the deal that could turn into a positive surprise.

  7. iserp

    “It would have been funny if they started selling Cap Space’s jersey instead of McGrady’s.”

    xDDDDDD

    It would be the best selling jersey of the NBA: Cap Space with the number $34.000.000

  8. KnickfaninNJ

    I don’t know about those of you who are saying next year he could be better when his knees improve. That could be true, but the data at the top of this page suggest he still won’t be a very good shooter. Basically, it seems likely to me that better knees would give somewhat better rebounding, but I don’t see them helping his shooting much. I say this just by thinking about what’s involved in each of those activities and noting that his rebounding seems to have taken a noticeable dive when he was injured. I watched a lot of Knick games this season and basically I saw maybe two or three plays total that I thought made him look actually talented (by starting NBA player standards, that is). Otherwise he was boring to watch and mostly average, worse or uninvolved. Honestly, he actually made Shaq look very, very good this year by comparison; and look where Shaq got the Cavaliers.

    I think the reason Walsh pumped up McGrady’s potential was to sell tickets. The Knicks have been having trouble selling all their tickets and business did actually pick up after they traded for him

  9. taggart4800

    I would first like to say that i respect Mike for keeping things here at Knickerblogger very much stats orientated and avoiding the ‘LeBron – a – thon’ (love that tag line – espn i beleive).
    I too was unimpressed by McGrady this year and the irrational fan in me did hope that he was going to pull it out of the bag for us. My concern is that it isn’t jus tphysical deficiencies with McGrady, it is probably mental. You can’t come back the way he did for one game and then totally disappear again for the rest of your contract year. Somethings up.
    But to say that he isn’t good value at the V. Minimum… Really? I would be there in a heartbeat. Even with an aging body. But i do remember something of a rift developing between D’Antoni and McGrady. Plus around the same time he changed his tune and said LeBron wouldn’t come to NY. Maybe i have become consumed by the ‘Bron-a-thon…
    In an attempt not to be, what is the likelyhood of this, LeBron Free, free agency scenario :-

    Miss on Melo but get Granger… Tough sell i know but seriously the Knicks could be VERY D’Antoni if they got him. They would be long and offensively explosive. Douglas/Johnson/Gallo/Granger/Bosh. Not exactly stout defense but very explosive. I would love to watch that team. Best Knick team in a longtime. Plus your bench would include Walker 6-6, Chandler 6-8, Barron 6-11 and whoever else we draft and sign. If we miss on LeBron at least we would be somewhat entertaining. Plus i think players with a point to prove are dangerous which Johnson and Granger do. You haven’t said to the fans ‘All or nothing’ but you have made a statement. Only one of those players is going to make Max money (Bosh) whilst Granger makes only 10 and Johnson 14/15.

    The media paint an unsurprisingly anti knick out look. All is fair in Love and War i suppose, but if we are to go all in this summer we must turn Curry into Granger/Paul/Igoudala/Ellis/Harris/Roy to get the summer rolling. We are not going to get Melo next year and we would then have our own Big Three (ish). Of these options i believe Granger is the most likely and valuable but then i am English and look at things from a very distorted angle….

  10. Ted Nelson

    @ 6

    I think we have to assume they had at least some hope T-Mac would turn it around. Either way I can’t believe how much they gave up. T-Mac was overrated to begin with and who else was bidding for him? He was heading for free agency this offseason pretty much regardlessly of what happened, so the Knicks could have tried to pick him up then. Was getting a little sneak peak really worth 2 first round picks (which is how much more the Knicks paid then I wish they had).
    I will say that it was “extra” cap space, but it could be huge.

    @4

    “T-Mac is a really good player and age shouldn’t be a factor yet”

    Did you read Mike’s analysis? T-Mac hasn’t been a good player in years, let alone really good. And age already has been a factor, he lost a step a while ago. It’s not the actual numerical age of a player that matters, it’s the physical part of it. Their health.

    “He is still a star”

    Based on what?

    “On the other hand, if he is healthy next season, he could be worth much more than the Joe Johnsons/Childress/Salmons/…. of the world,”

    If you read Mike’s article you’ll see that McGrady has been in decline for years. It’s not like he can magically “get healthy” and return to his 23 year old season. He had one First Team All-NBA caliber season in his entire career. Out of 13 seasons. His best 3 year stretch was 21-23 years old. In the past 5 seasons his TS% has been above .500 ONCE. I think he might still have something left, but he hasn’t been a star in a long time.

    “but he might want the MLE just for ‘respect’;”

    If the Knicks sign Lee and a max FA they cannot give T-Mac the MLE. The Knicks do not have an MLE this offseason due to being so far under the cap, and I don’t think they will have $7 mill left once they’ve signed Lee and a max guy.

  11. Ted Nelson

    “what is the likelyhood of this, LeBron Free, free agency scenario :-Miss on Melo but get Granger…”

    In 2014?

    “we must turn Curry into Granger/Paul/Igoudala/Ellis/Harris/Roy”

    Roy as in Brandon Roy? The Pacers and Blazers are not in a position to give away their franchise players for nothing but cap space. Blazers are in it to win it now. Pacers only have $15 million committed in 2011-12, enough to get two max players next offseason or 3 or 4 good players. Why also give away Granger? Maybe the Knicks could give them Chandler/Douglas/Walker/2nd rounder… but I don’t know that they’d go for that either. Chandler’s wildest dream is to be as good as Granger and the rest have proved nothing or very little in the NBA.

    “Of these options i believe Granger is the most likely”

    I would say he’s the 2nd or 3rd LEAST likely (after Roy and maybe Paul), and at best the 3rd most valuable (beind Paul and Roy… though you could also put him behind Harris and Igoudala… Ellis I can’t even consider since he refused to pass the ball to a teammate for most of season…).

  12. iserp

    ““He is still a star”

    Based on what?”

    Perception. Come On! If Iverson returns, he is still a star… i mean, i am talking about demanding playing time. These are the kind of players that attract the media and are talked worldwide. They aren’t ‘nobodys’. I was discussing that if he asks for playing time, it could be conflictive with the development and the chemistry of the team; it would garner the media attention.

    “If you read Mike’s article you’ll see that McGrady has been in decline for years. It’s not like he can magically “get healthy” and return to his 23 year old season.”

    He didn’t became a bad player, he’s had injuries during that time. The question is if he can get healthy. If gets healthy, you could expect him to have 20+ PER. I am not sure if he needs magic for that, though. (He could go back to Orlando, yep)

    “If the Knicks sign Lee and a max FA they cannot give T-Mac the MLE.”

    I was saying it is not about money, but about respect. If we offer the rest of the money we have after signing a max and David Lee, he’ll feel we are making everything we possibly can so he stays.

  13. Ted Nelson

    “Perception. Come On! If Iverson returns, he is still a star… i mean, i am talking about demanding playing time. These are the kind of players that attract the media and are talked worldwide. They aren’t ‘nobodys’. I was discussing that if he asks for playing time, it could be conflictive with the development and the chemistry of the team; it would garner the media attention.”

    I agree to a large extent. I would have to feel confident he’d check his ego at the door and be a team player to sign him. Grant Hill was a 5 time All-NBA guy (T-Mac, 7 time)… he’s not distracting anyone in Phoenix, though. If McGrady wants to be more Iverson than Hill, forget it. Unfortunately McGrady has been a lot closer to Iverson than to Hill attitude wise over his career.

    “He didn’t became a bad player, he’s had injuries during that time.”

    He’s gotten significantly worse, I have no idea whether he’s lost some of his athleticism forever or is capable of coming 100% back full health. No one seems too confident that what he’s lost health wise can come back. He’s had a bum back since his mid-20s and now his knees are bad too…

    “If gets healthy, you could expect him to have 20+ PER.”

    If he takes 35% of the Knicks shots while he’s on the floor. PER gives a lot of points for taking a lot of shots, even if you miss most of them. Last time he had a decent season his PER was inflated because he led the entire league in usage: he used a higher % of his team’s possessions to try to score while on the floor than any other player in the league. I do think he can be above average should he be healthy next season. I think the chances of him actually being a 20 PER guy next season, however, is about 1%. If T-Mac is taking 30+% of their shots while he’s on the court the Knicks are in trouble.

  14. massive

    This has nothing to do with the above topic, and it may just be coincidence, but New York sports teams are getting talent all around now. Theirry Henry will be a New York Red Bulls after the World Cup, the Jets got a lot of big name players this off-season and have Revis Island, so they’re in win-now mode. The New York Liberty is thinking WNBA championship this year, and The Yankees are well, the Yankees. I know I neglected to mention the Giants and Mets, and my apologies if you are a fan. But it seems that we are ushering in a new, winning era for New York sports. I would hope the Knicks are going to keep up the standard in F.A. acquisitions. But back to the topic of discussion;

    I would hope that T-Mac isn’t back next season unless he’s coming off the bench a la Starks, but he probably doesn’t have that much left because of injury. He won’t be a bad guy to have around, but if Amar’e is even considering coming to New York, T-Mac won’t be welcome. I think he’s nothing to really consider for the franchise.

  15. BigBlueAL

    Chris Sheridan in his chat on ESPN.com today was asked what will the Knicks do if they miss out on the big FA’s and he said re-sign Lee and offer the max to Rudy Gay and hope Memphis doesnt match. I almost vomited.

    Also Hollinger today had an article about potential LeBron teammates and who would be the best fits with him. The perfect teammates for LeBron would be Chris Bosh. Ironically the next 4 are also all big men and Lee was 2nd in that group. The next 6 are all perimeter players are none were considered to be great fits with LeBron, but Joe Johnson was the best fit in that group with Rudy Gay, Derrick Rose and Wade next on the group. Devin Harris and Baron Davis were the last 2 and viewed as horrible fits. Wouldve loved to see where Gallo wouldve come out in this experiment.

    BTW Hollinger used this formula for his “LeBron Rating” for the above players: “So we have four key metrics we’re looking at for in an ideal James teammate — low usage rate, high TS%, high offensive rebound rate and strong outside shooting numbers. The “low usage” requirement is relative, as every star will be above the league average in that category; similarly, the bar for offensive rebound rate needs to be set low, since most stars are taking the shots, not collecting the misses. Nonetheless, this at least provides some guidelines for our star search. Using this data, I created a “LeBron Rating” for each player by taking three-fourths of the player’s true shooting percentage, subtracting half his usage rate, adding his offensive rebound rate and subtracting twice his turnover rate.”

  16. BigBlueAL

    Someone did the math and if done correctly Gallo doesnt rate that high on the LeBron teammates rating, only better than Harris and Baron and almost identical but just below Wade. Off reb rate and long 2pt % kills him apparently.

  17. supernova

    Great analysis. I knew that McGrady’s production had obviously dipped, but did not realize how dramatically.

    I agree with an earlier comment that I would probably have increased the rootability factor, since I believe a lot of people truly were hoping for him to turn things around once he joined the Knicks. Sadly though it was not meant to be. At this point I think he probably does not have too much left in his tank. Only way we should sign him is for the vet minimum, and then he must understand that he would be a bench guy with limited minutes.

    I do not know what kind of presence he would be in the lockerroom, but if he could accept a reserve role and be more of a leader and mentor to the younger guys, then signing him for the vet minimum seems like a good plan.

  18. d-mar

    Tonight’s draft lottery will be like watching a really bad movie that you want to walk away from, but you kind of want to see what happens. If the Jazz somehow pull a Chicago and vault to #1, I may put my fist through the TV set.

  19. tastycakes

    Actually, I hope we win the lottery for the Jazz. And they draft John Wall, trade Deron Williams to the Knicks, and then watch Wall become a giant bust.

    YOU NEVER KNOW

  20. Kikuchiyo

    I can’t go higher than 1 with T-Mac’s rootability. I know these games were meaningless, but I really couldn’t understand the games where he played, even started, but, for whatever reason, wasn’t playing in the fourth quarter.

    I know that this had something to do with “medical considerations.” But, honestly, this team needed late game offense, and T-Mac seemed to be yukking it up on the bench, wrapped and ready to leave. I’ve never seen another player with this odd arrangement. Did anyone else notice this?

    You’d think that Knick fans, of all fans, would have had enough of watching this. It’s something like a combination of watching very late Allan Houston with a little Curry-Jerome James indifference as a bonus.

  21. Ted Nelson

    “offer the max to Rudy Gay and hope Memphis doesnt match. I almost vomited.”

    I really hope that’s just Sheriden’s speculation and not related to any inside knowledge he has of the Knicks front office strategy.

    I’ll have to take a look at the Hollinger experiment. Sounds like total crap to me, though: it’s not a two-on-two game. I still maintain that Wade would be the best teammate for LeBron, outside of Dwight Howard and maybe some other guys who are not available. If nothing else it’s hard to be the perfect teammate for anyone when your defense has earned you the nickname “RuPaul.” Those two wouldn’t step on each other’s toes and their PERs might be highest together, but if you put LeBron and Wade both on the wing no team can stop both of those guys, if they can even stop either. Both All-Defense, and you could then put some big boys down low to defend and not have to worry about RuPaul. I think LeBron and Bosh would be a good core for a team, I’m just saying I think LeBron and Wade would be better. Both would see their assist rate cut in half and likely their usage suffer too, but they’d be the closest thing to MJ-Pippen ever. (Wade is coming off a down year and Bosh off a career year, but I’m going on long-term production and assuming that’s not a trend or long-term change.)

    “I know that this had something to do with “medical considerations.” But, honestly, this team needed late game offense, and T-Mac seemed to be yukking it up on the bench, wrapped and ready to leave. I’ve never seen another player with this odd arrangement.”

    It’s definitely odd. I don’t know much about it, so from my ignorant point of view it seems just as likely that the Knicks told T-Mac he wasn’t playing or there was a mutual agreement as that T-Mac told the Knicks he wasn’t playing. He might have even been “yukking it up” as a way of acting out because he wanted to be in the game and was frustrated… Even still it wouldn’t have been the most productive way to express himself, but just throwing the possibility out there. He might also be a total jerk-off, I have no idea.

  22. Ted Nelson

    “Actually, I hope we win the lottery for the Jazz. And they draft John Wall, trade Deron Williams to the Knicks, and then watch Wall become a giant bust.”

    That would be nice… doubt they’d trade Williams right away, though.

    I have read speculation that the Jazz would use the Knicks’ pick to get rid of Kirilenko. That seems very unlikely because AK has only one year left on his contract, so a lottery pick would be a high price to pay. More likely the Jazz could use the pick to try and get over the top in the West.

  23. Ted Nelson

    “I have read speculation that the Jazz would use the Knicks’ pick to get rid of Kirilenko.”

    Not if it’s in the top 3, but if they don’t get lucky.

  24. Jafa

    Hi Knickerbloggers, got some questions:

    Draft lottery got me thinking about the draft. Wondering if Donnie Walsh is going to do the same thing he did last year and buy a low first round pick? If he does this, I think Memphis may be willing to sell one of their low pick (#25 and #28) or Orlando may be willing to sell us #29. Is this plausible?

    And if so, who do we hope drops into our lap at this stage that could be a rotation player for us?

  25. Frank

    I guess if we bought another draft pick it would end up eating into our cap space?

    also fyi – if anyone is as frustrated as me that Hahn’s great blog is now behind the pay wall, the mobile newsday site (reachable through any browser) is NOT behind a paywall (mobile.newsday.com). the knicks fix is actually under “blogs” not under knicks. Also the newsday iphone app is free and not behind a paywall also.

  26. TDM

    Jafa – it’s been rumored that Walsh is interested in buying his way into the lower first round. I think he would be targeting one of the big men in the draft (orton, alabi, …).

    Wouldn’t it be within the Knicks best interest if Minnesota won the lottery? They have indicated that they are not interested in Wall , which I don’t believe for a minute, but it could free up one of their many guards for a trade scenario.

  27. ess-dog

    I’m sorry, did anyone else see that LBJ “reached out” to Eddy Curry of all people about working out together this offseason? WTF? Can LBJ go 24 hours without a crazy new leak?
    Regardless, this does make sense if James plans on coming to the Knicks. He needs to start building up those assets for Donnie. And how great would it be if we could even get a solid 15 minutes a game from Eddy? Just someone to put a body on opposing bigs and get them to foul him. I know, I don’t dare to dream of Eddy ever being productive again… but it’s a smart move on LBJ’s part if he IS coming.
    TMac: don’t want him. Fact is, he’s not a starter, he clearly thinks he’s a starter, and if he’s not one, he’ll bitch and moan. I’d rather go with Chandler/Walker at that spot. We can get “veteran leadership” at another position.
    Re: Walsh buying a pick, I’m guessing one or both of the 2nd rounders would be thrown into a trade for any 1st rounder so that the $$ evens out a bit (we don’t want to eat into our cap too much.) I’m sure Walsh is already eyeing possible “undrafted” players to round out our team as well, not to mention euros, and d-leaguers. Considering Mike’s rotation, I’d rather get one quality player than 2 borderline players, but it’s a deep draft… who knows?
    As far as trades involving Curry, shouldn’t we target teams that have big names they need to make room for in 2011? i.e. do you think we could pry away a player like Nene so that Denver can make room to resign Melo? I’m not sure of their cap situation, but maybe? That could go for Tony Parker as well. Instead of the spurs trading Parker, maybe they want to clear space to keep Parker and Duncan? Maybe McDyess and Blair for Curry? Or the rights to Splitter. We fill out our bench, get a great young big and they get cap relief. This would probably come after the major free agent signings.

  28. Jafa

    If that happens TDM, what would it take for Minnesota to give us the rights to Ricky Rubio? Chandler? Chandler + future draft picks (do we even have any left)? Gallo (gulp!)?

  29. Ted Nelson

    @24 & 25

    A first rounder does count against the cap, but a late one doesn’t count that much: there’s already a roster hold for like 400 or 500k so a Toney Douglas contract would only eat something like 500 or 600k. Beaubois, picked 25, only cost 80k more than Douglas. Eric Maynor, picked #20, made 300k more than Douglas so that’s getting close to 1mm of cap space eaten range. Depends how much wiggle room the Knicks feel they have. A second rounder does not count against the cap until he’s signed.

    20-30 is a pretty big range, so it really depend what pick they can/want to buy.
    -Alabi and Orton, as TDM mentions, are bigs who could be there. Larry Sanders and Gani Lawal, too. Varnado and/or Brackins could be there when they pick in the second, but they might not so the Knicks could move up if they love one.
    -I’m a Damion James fan if he falls out of the lottery.
    -In the late 20s I would like Ebanks. It might take a couple years and he’s not a scorer, but if he fills out he could be a 4 for D’Antoni (or maybe even Diaw style 5… Diaw is a decent comp for Ebanks I think) and I feel like he’s a guy whose skills may translate well to the NBA game as a “role player.”
    -There are a bunch of combo-guards expected to go 20-40 who could be plus rotation players: Armon Johnson, Avery Bradley, Willie Warren, Terrico White, maybe Lance Stephenson.
    -I don’t know much about Dominique Jones, but he’s very intriguing.
    -The guy I would really like is Ekpe Udoh, but I think he’s gone in the top 20.

    @26

    I wouldn’t really be surprised either way with Minni. Evan Turner is not a bad option. Maybe they even go with size and take Cousins. Flynn was a bad pick, though, so maybe they could do what they were trying to do with Rubio/Flynn the right way with Rubio/Wall. The x-factor they do have to consider, though, is Rubio. If it makes it less likely he comes over, do they do it? Is Rubio AND Turner better than just Wall? What is Rubio’s trade value right now? (My guess is way lower than his actual value due to the uncertainty of whether he’ll come over and how he might do if he does…) If we know one thing about Kahn it’s that he’s not afraid to think outside the box.

  30. Ted Nelson

    “did anyone else see that LBJ “reached out” to Eddy Curry of all people about working out together this offseason?”

    I did not, but that’s pretty incredible if it’s true.

    The one thing that worries me is if he works out with Eddy BEFORE he signs and realizes Eddy is a lost cause.

    “it’s a smart move on LBJ’s part if he IS coming.”

    Definitely. If he ISN’T coming… it could either be: a. a really nice move to help out Curry and b. an a-hole move to get Knicks fans hopes up before crushing them. Any way you look at it, it’s wierd news right now if it’s true. If it is true, coming so soon into the offseason, seems like he might be taking Curry for a bit of a test drive… which doesn’t sound so great. I guess Eddy Curry is a lot better 1-on-0 in a gym than in a 5-on-5, though, so maybe he can actually impress LeBron.

    “Fact is, he’s not a starter, he clearly thinks he’s a starter, and if he’s not one, he’ll bitch and moan.”

    Seems that way, but without talking to T-Mac personally or seeing an interview at least I’ll reserve judgement.

    “We can get “veteran leadership” at another position.”

    It’s not just potential leadership, but also potential value. You can sign a guy to the veteran’s minimum even once you’re capped out. If he plays even like he’s worth 5-7 mill, that’s a good value for a team with a lot of roster spots to fill. I’m not saying “do it,” just “think about it.”

    “I’m guessing one or both of the 2nd rounders would be thrown into a trade for any 1st rounder so that the $$ evens out a bit ”

    2nd rounders don’t count against the cap till they’re signed as there is no contract slots like the 1st. A team would probably ask the Knicks for one of their picks along with cash… depends who has more leverage.

    “As far as trades involving Curry, shouldn’t we target teams that have big names they need to make room for in 2011?”

    Sounds good. Hard to speculate on who will be made available at what price and what other teams will be bidding.

  31. TDM

    @27: “I’m sorry, did anyone else see that LBJ “reached out” to Eddy Curry of all people about working out together this offseason?”

    LeBron is calling all the top tier talent in the league to assess his interest in playing with them. Derrick Rose, Eddy Curry, . . . I hear Mardy Collins is on speed dial.

    @29: “I wouldn’t really be surprised either way with Minni. Evan Turner is not a bad option. Maybe they even go with size and take Cousins.”

    I guess its possible that the Wolves really aren’t interested and are just trying to get someone to give up some assets to trade up to the first pick. The Wolves already said that pairing Al Jefferson with KLove isn’t working. Would Cousins be the answer? Not too sure about that. Evan Turner certainly fills a need for them.

  32. iserp

    … maybe it’s Lebron subtle way to tell the media “Don’t read too much in my calls to Derrick Rose”

  33. Ted Nelson

    @ 27 “what would it take for Minnesota to give us the rights to Ricky Rubio?”

    I don’t think Kahn’s in a rush to give away Rubio, and there will be other suitors besides the Knicks. It’s a weak PG class both in the draft (behind Wall) and in free agency, so any team looking for a PG might make an offer if Rubio’s available. Still, I don’t know that too many teams will be willing to risk Rubio coming over so the offers may be low-ball offer. I don’t think Kahn takes a low-ball offer based on everything I’ve seen and read, but who knows. (Wilson Chandler would be a low-ball offer to me… maybe a starting point if Kahn happens to be high on Chandler.)

    @31 “The Wolves already said that pairing Al Jefferson with KLove isn’t working.”

    Trading Al Jefferson probably would have been my first order of business if I were Kahn… I have no idea what his trade value is right now. You still have media types talking about him as a young star and he does pile up the PER stats (basically scoring volume and rebounds in his case), but he’s weak defensively and a low efficiency scorer. The guy has done nothing but lose–A LOT–which obviously isn’t his fault, but it’s not a good sign. And he’s injury prone. Maybe there’s no interest in his big contract. However I have to think if they’re smart about it they can get more in return than he’s worth, but who knows.
    Given that Kahn drafted Flynn #6 overall last season… (Not just because it was after drafting Rubio #5, but also because Flynn was terrible value in the lottery.) I have no idea what he’ll do. I honestly wouldn’t be too shocked if Cole Aldrich was picked #1 by Minni (which is who I figure McHale would have picked). I thought the Rubio pick and taking 2 PGs in the top 6 was outside the box thinking in a good way, but the 2nd PG being Flynn made me think Kahn is capable of as much stupidity as McHale if not more.
    Cousins is interesting… it only takes one GM with a high pick who believes in him… the chance to get a bigman with All-NBA level TALENT only comes around so often. But maybe he falls because he has work ethic concerns written all over him.

  34. Z

    “did anyone else see that LBJ “reached out” to Eddy Curry of all people about working out together this offseason?”

    They do share an agent (which is presumably why Walsh hasn’t given Curry the Marbury banishment)…

    “As far as trades involving Curry, shouldn’t we target teams that have big names they need to make room for in 2011? i.e. do you think we could pry away a player like Nene so that Denver can make room to resign Melo?”

    Denver doesn’t need to clear room to sign Melo. They have his Bird Rights.

  35. Ted Nelson

    “Denver doesn’t need to clear room to sign Melo. They have his Bird Rights.”

    Yeah, that example is not great because Denver has literally only about $6 million in salary that will definitely (barring a trade) be on the books in 2011-12: Balkman and Birdman. There are 2 player options, 2 team options, and a qualifying offer to Afflalo. Nene can be a FA at the same time as Curry if he opts out, so Denver has very little incentive to make that trade. The principle, though, stands: teams should be looking to shed salary even if it’s only to meet internal budgets and the Knicks are in a good position to take advantage if they don’t hit it big in free agency.

  36. Owen

    “Chris Sheridan in his chat on ESPN.com today was asked what will the Knicks do if they miss out on the big FA’s and he said re-sign Lee and offer the max to Rudy Gay and hope Memphis doesnt match. I almost vomited.”

    If that happens I am done. I am hanging by a thread as it is…

  37. ess-dog

    Can you guys really imagine Donnie Walsh offering Gay the max? Won’t happen. I also don’t see much of a shot at Rubio, unless he flat out says “I’m never ever playing for the T-Wolves no matter what.” Even then, Kahn can probably get a better offer since they have cap space and no big free agents will go there. Maybe Portland offers Rudy and a pick or Bayless and a few picks which is better than Chandler. Jersey could offer Harris, a draft pick and/or some of their other talent. Sacto could offer their pick if it’s high enough and Cassipi, etc, etc. It depends on if a team wants to pay his buyout as well.
    Rubio’s a top talent and would probably be a top 5 definitely top 10 pg in the nba. We would have to come to the table with Gallo to even be in the conversation. I don’t think teams can lowball b/c even the threat of him outlasting his contract and re-entering the draft is a gamble. Enough teams would want him to make a good enough offer before this – but it will probably come down to the wire, meaning I don’t think Kahn will move Rubio this year unless they are totally blown away by an offer. Kahn knows what he has.
    Also, I seem to remember the Wolves being more into moving Love than Jefferson, despite Love being a better player.

  38. jagermeister

    In addition to Minnesota, would it also make sense to root for New Orleans to pull out the upset and get the top overall pick? Wondering if it would make them more open to dealing either Paul or Collison if they could get Wall. Either of those guards would look pretty sweet running D’Antoni’s offense.

    Would something like Paul/Okafor for Curry/S&T Lee/Chandler be palatable? With Peja, Curry, Mo Pete and Songaila coming off the books, it would make NO a major player in 2011 free agency to build around Wall. Don’t really like swallowing Okafor’s contract and having him be our undersized center for the next four years, nor do I like killing our own cap flexibility for 2011. But you gotta figure if we’re gonna trade Curry’s expiring contract for assets, we could do worse. And if it nets us CP3, wouldn’t that make things a bit more attractive for Free Agent X?

    If Mcgrady can still be somewhat servicable, and you convince him to take the veteran’s minimum, we could look like this:

    PG – Paul
    SG – McGrady
    SF – Gallo
    PF – Lebron or Bosh
    C – Okafor

  39. Ted Nelson

    ess-dog,

    The reason I’m not sure Minnesota will get a fair offer (or at least many fair offers) is because Rubio is very unlikely to come over this offseason. It’s more likely in 2011 when he has an opt-out built into his contract. NBA teams can only pay up to $500k of a buy-out, I believe, so he’s on the hook for the rest this offseason (not sure what it is, but last season I remember it being really high). He’s been quoted in the Spanish press saying how much he loves playing for Barcelona (who won both the Spanish and Euroleauge Championships this season and are effectively the Yankees of European basketball at this time… plus his hometown team) and doesn’t even want to come to the NBA next season. If he doesn’t even want to come next season, will he ever want to come? I think he will, but few teams will give up a strong building block for someone who MAY come over in one season. Maybe a team that wants to tank for the 2011 lottery, but the Knicks are obviously not in that position after the Hill trade.

    Even if Kahn wants or has to move Rubio (say he holds out unless they trade him), his value should be higher next offseason when he can guarantee a team he’ll come over right away. If he says “yeah I’ll come over in a year” I think teams will be pretty turned-off. But maybe some team loves Ricky and goes all in. In that case I agree that there are teams who can afford to give more than the Knicks. Maybe the Knicks can get creative and s&t Lee, take back Jefferso, or maybe they even trade Gallo if Rubio is their big play (would be nice to have Hill and those picks back in that case)…

    Can you re-enter the NBA draft? I don’t think I’ve heard of that.

    There were more rumors about Love, not sure if that’s because he has more trade value and Jefferson’s contract is hard to move or because they like Jefferson better…

    jagermeister,

    Don’t know what NO does if they win the lottery…

  40. Ted Nelson

    I should say Spanish regular season best record, the playoffs haven’t started… Barca went 31-3 in the regular season, though, and it would be a huge upset if they lost.

    Tiago Splitter’s team–Caja Laboral (formerly Tau)–is the #2 seed (27-7), and if Rubio and Splitter (both 1st Team All-ACB this season) meet up in the finals it could be good fun for NBA fans. Barca’s got a ton of other guys with some relationship to the NBA: Erazem Lorbek (Pacers 2nd rounder… also 1st team All-ACB), JC Navarro (former Grizzly… also 1st team All-ACB), Fran Vazquez (Magic lottery pick), Pete Mickeal (former Knicks 2nd rounder), and Terence Morris (former Rocket). Caja Laboral’s top guys outside Splitter don’t have much NBA history (Carl English is their 4th leading scorer), though they’ve cut some guys who do (Lior Eliyahu, Sean Singletary, and Chris Lofton was at least a prospect) and Walter Herrmann is their 9th man and Milt Palacio appeared in 2 games.

    Spanish playoffs will be interesting for a few other NBA prospects…
    -#3 seed Real Madrid: Sergio Llull (Rockets) and Ante Tomic (Jazz) are on #3 seed (27-7) Real Madrid along with NBA vets Jorge Garbajosa and Marko Jaric. Former Knicks wunderkind Morris Almond has played a 100 minutes for them this season…
    -#4 seed Valencia: Victor Claver (Blazers) and Nando de Colo (Spurs) are among their top players. Kosta Perovic and Pietrus’ brother also play for them.
    -#5 seed Unicaja: Joel Freeland (Blazers) had a second straight break-out season after moving from Gran Canaria.

  41. rrude

    Can anyone shed any light on why Calipari is considered a major player in the Lebron sweepstakes? I don’t recall him as a successful NBA coach and generally college coaches don’t seem to do that well moving to the NBA. (I might be wrong, just my impression). Calipari’s success at the college level seems to revolve around his ability to “recruit” (cough, cough) top players more so than any coaching ability he may have. So why would a smart player like Lebron think that this is the coach who is going to come in and lead a team to an NBA championship? Even if they have a personal relationship, I don’t quite get it.

  42. ess-dog

    Sorry, you’re right about the draft. He would then just become a free agent, correct? Such is the case with Splitter after this season, I believe… then he can sign for more than his 2nd round status.
    I still think because of demand, Kahn could get a good deal (not a great deal) for Rubio if he took calls for the highest bidder. He’s an upgrade at the point for well over half the league- even if one would have to wait an extra year for him. He could probably get a #5 pick and a complementary player. They’re such a weird team though, who knows what they do? Their best players are 2 pgs and 2 pfs. Turner would really help them.
    Do the Grizz still retain the rights to Navarro? He could be an option for Mike D…
    Can’t help but think there’s going to be a lot of trade movement (positioning) this year. Hard to say how much will happen at the draft, but it should be fun.

  43. Ted Nelson

    I’m not sure draft rights expire unless a team renounces the guy. RealGM.com still lists the Celtics as holding Albert Miralles’ rights, and he was picked in 2004. Splitter was a 1st rounder, and that’s why he’s stuck with a rookie scale contract. It’s not as big a deal for Rubio since he was picked #5, but for Splitter to come to the NBA and sign his 2007 #28 pick contract (probably starting at around $1 mill) he’s going to be leaving short-term money on the table he could make in Europe (if he gets a big 2nd NBA contract he could more than make up for it, probably, but that’s a risk). Was he a second rounder the Spurs would probably have a better shot at signing him since they could give him any contract they’re allowed to under the CBA (since they’re capped out, probably up to the MLE… not sure if you can use the MLE on a 2nd round draft pick…). That’s why Marc Gasol made as much money this season as Rudy Gay, depsite Gay being the #9 pick in 2006 and Gasol being the #48 pick in 2007.

    ESPN doesn’t have JCN listed under Memphis’ 2010 restricted free agents, so they must have renounced him (if they hadn’t I believe his cap hold would stay on their books every offseason, as I guess Childress’ is in Atlanta… maybe they had to renounce him for the Randolph trade?). La Bomba signed a really fat contract when he returned to Barca, I think the fattest in Spanish basketball history… So, I don’t think he’s coming stateside again.

  44. massive

    I’ve been reading the comments, and I don’t understand why nobody likes Flynn. He’s a talented player, played in Minnesota and was hardly on the national stage. From what I saw at the Rookie-Sophomore Game, he knows how to pass and take it to the rim. Somebody enlighten me, what’s so bad about the kid that he’s rated under Toney Douglas by you guys. Is it his height? Or is it just that Minnesota could have gotten better value at the number 6 spot, and Flynn shouldn’t have been in the lottery?

    Something tells me we’re getting lucky tonight, and a team will get a pick that will make one of their best players expendable. I’m crossing my fingers for Indy to get the 4th/5th pick and takes Wesley Johnson, making Danny Granger expendable, at least in theory. But I’m almost certain San Antonio would be in on any Danny Granger action.

  45. Owen

    Massive – Because his college stats sucked and so have his NBA stats. He was almost the worst rookie drafted and that’s hardly surprising since statistically he was below average in college. Because he parlayed a great performance in a famous triple overtime game and a telegenic personality into a ridiculous overdraft. Because he is a one trick pony scorer and some of us stat types prefer players with well rounded skill sets. Because his best case on DraftExpress is Earl Watson.

    Man, I feel like Jon Abbey….

    I would add that I would put Danny Granger in the same category as Rudy Gay and Joe Johnson as overrated free agents who won’t lead the Knicks to greatness…

  46. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    Massive,

    Flynn posted a .511 TS% and a 13 PER. According to Dave Berri’s metric, he produced -0.68 wins this season in 2300 minutes. The odds are that he’s never going to be good (barring some kind of freak ascent a la Kevin Durant, made even less likely by his position and height). And with so many young players that are already good, why risk the future on another project?

  47. massive

    @45 & 46,

    The guy played in Minnesota, and they didn’t have much talent. At one point people were saying New Jersey, despite the record, was the better team between. Maybe this is Flynn’s fault, but he was playing under Kurt Rambis, who was in his 1st year being a head coach. Also, I’m not sure that the triangle offense is suited for Flynn, or a rookie for that matter. To me, a good amount of a rookie’s success is based on the system he comes into, and the coach. Look at the rookie guards who did well; Tyreke Evans, Brandon Jennings, Stephen Curry, and Ty Lawson to name a few. The guys coaching these teams are Paul Westphal, Scott Skiles, Don Nelson, and George Karl. I’m sure we’re unanimous here that the aforementioned are better than Rambis. Also, Earl Watson? I think that’s a little harsh, that’s a worst case scenario in my opinion. His best case scenario could be, I’m not sure, an explosive, score first PG with good court vision? Sounds contradictory, but he’s better than the opinion amongst my fellow KnickerBloggers. At least I hope so.

  48. Z

    “re-sign Lee and offer the max to Rudy Gay and hope Memphis doesnt match…If that happens I am done. I am hanging by a thread as it is…”

    Even the re-sign David Lee part? Man, it wasn’t long ago you didn’t want to trade him straight up for Kobe Bryant!

  49. massive

    Also, a lot more goes into a draft than how you perform in college, such as athleticism, and pre-draft workouts. There’s no way Flynn’s performance in the tourney could have boosted his stock that much. If that was so, Gordon Hayward and Kyle Singler should be lottery picks, and Zoubek should have been 1st round lock. Its not like the NBA where a good playoff performance can get you a large contract (see Jerome James). Other things are taken into consideration, its more of a science than a leap of faith.

  50. massive

    The Wizards get John Wall? Damn, I hope Donnie Walsh doesn’t try to get Gilbert Arenas because of this.

  51. Ted Nelson

    Massive,

    Being worse than Toney Douglas is not that bad a thing. Douglas is a good scorer, a good defender, and low turnover. That’s three more things than some NBA players are good at.

    Playing on a bad team might hurt your stats, but does not doom them. Flynn was only a rookie and his stats suggest he’ll be an NBA player for a while, but they don’t justify where he was picked. By analyzing his college stats you could have known this would likely be the case before he was even drafted.

    Flynn is not god-awful, he was a first rounder. I just thought he was a huge reach at #6 and his rookie year didn’t do anything to change my mind. I would have said that in any draft, but this was the deepest PG draft in NBA history. Flynn was picked ahead of Curry, Jennings, Holiday, Lawson…

    “There’s no way Flynn’s performance in the tourney could have boosted his stock that much. If that was so, Gordon Hayward and Kyle Singler should be lottery”

    He was in the 20s in mock drafts before the conference tourney. It was his performance late in the season along with his personality and workouts. He was drafted on intangibles and measurables, not production.

    There’s a good chance Hayward will be a lottery pick and Singler was in the top 20 of ever mock I saw before he pulled out.

    “Its not like the NBA where a good playoff performance can get you a large contract”

    Often it is. Of course other things are considered. Other things are considered in free agency too. Players who play in the Final Four are routinely reached on and drafted higher than they should be. Think of all the Duke and UNC guys who are drafted higher than they should be. There is some logic to seeing how well a guy does against tough competition, but the sample size has to be large enough… not a few games.

    “he’s better than the opinion amongst my fellow KnickerBloggers.”

    Here is how good he was his rookie season:
    http://www.basketball-reference.com/players/f/flynnjo01.html
    http://www.82games.com/0910/0910MIN.HTM
    How good do you think he is?

    “Kurt Rambis, who was in his 1st year being a head coach.”

    Minor point of contention, but Kurt Kambis also coached the Lakers into the playoffs for 1/2 a season in 98-99. Again, though, plenty of players have good seasons playing for bad or mediocre coaches. Plenty of players have bad seasons playing for great coaches.

    “Also, a lot more goes into a draft than how you perform in college, such as athleticism, and pre-draft workouts.”

    And still, every year there are busts taken. Every year there are steals who drop in the draft. Teams do their best in the draft, but they make plenty of mistakes.

    “Other things are taken into consideration, its more of a science than a leap of faith.”

    I would say the exact opposite. If it were anything resembling a science then the draft order every year would match up with the players’ careers.

  52. KnickFan4Life

    Tracy McGrady D. Bad attitude that just reeked. I think he can still be a pretty darn good six man if he cares to be. But his days as a starter are done.

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