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Wednesday, July 30, 2014

NBA 3 Way Deal Good For Most

Cleveland
Receives: Ben Wallace, Wally Szczerbiak, Delonte West, Joe Smith
Loses: Drew Gooden, Larry Hughes, Cedric Simmons, Shannon Brown, Ira Newble, Donyell Marshall

Sure it’s a sore point that the Cavs aren’t getting the point guard that they’ve been looking for, especially considering Jason Kidd, Mike Bibby, Devin Harris, and even Mike James have all changed teams this year. But looking at who they gave up, it’s addition by subtraction. Consider the league average for TS% is typically around 54% (53.7% at this moment), and look at who’s heading out of Cleveland: Drew Gooden (48.7%), Larry Hughes (46.7%), Donyell Marshall (42.7%), Shannon Brown (43.3%), and Cedric Simmons (21.0%). Only Ira Newble (52.2%) has a TS% anywhere near the median. [On a side note, one has to wonder the merits of conventional wisdom when looking at these numbers. Isn't playing with a great passer/great scorer (LeBron James) suppose to make the rest of the team better on offense? Where are all the open looks in Cleveland?]

Enter Wally Szczerbiak (TS% 57.3%) and Joe Smith (TS% 51.5%), both of who should provide an offensive boost to Cleveland. Szczerbiak has never had a problem scoring efficiently, and at 30 years of age is still near the top of his game. Suddenly the Cavs look to have the makings of a strong offense: LeBron, Szczerbiak, Gibson, Ilgauskas, Varejao, Smith, Damon Jones, all have TS% above 50%. And although Ben Wallace is shooting poorly (TS% 39.1%) he’ll help the defense as well. With Ilgauskas, Wallace, Varejao, and James the Cavs have enough defense to make up for the guards.

In the end it’s hard not to like this trade for Cleveland. It’s not like the big named deals Los Angeles, Phoenix, and Dallas made, but it should make them a considerably better team in the playoffs.

Seattle
Receives: Adrian Griffin, Donyell Marshall, Ira Newble
Loses: Delonte West, Wally Szczerbiak

For Seattle this trade boils down to one thing: getting rid of Szczerbiak’s contract. Wally was Seattle’s highest paid player at $12M/year, nearly twice as much as their second highest paid player (Wilcox $6.5M). As for whom they’ll receive: Marshall has two years left at about $6M per, Adrian Griffin has two years left at $1.7M and Newble’s $3.4M expires this year. It’s not a great deal for Seattle, but it just doesn’t make sense to keep a Wally around on a rebuilding team that’s going to win 20-25 games. The one downside to this deal for Seattle residents is that cutting salaries is usually a necessary step prior to a team’s changing addresses.

Chicago
Receives: Drew Gooden, Larry Hughes, Cedric Simmons, Shannon Brown
Loses: Ben Wallace, Joe Smith, Adrian Griffin

And so ends the Ben Wallace era in Chicago. Big Ben never paid dividends in the Windy City for a number of reasons. Age caught up with Wallace, but he wasn’t the right fit for the Bulls in the first place. Chicago would have been better off keeping Tyson Chandler and grabbing a power forward that can score from the post. Instead they ended up with four defensive minded big men who had trouble scoring: Ben, Andres, Tyrus, and Joakim. Sometimes grabbing the best player in the draft isn’t the best option for teams that are looking to compete now.

However it’s really hard to like who the Bulls received. It’ll be a miracle if Larry Hughes can revert to his best days in Washington. As the years go on it looks as if Hughes’ 2004 & 2005 are the exceptions not the rule. Additionally Hughes contract is nearly as bad as Big Ben’s. Meanwhile Wallace and Joe Smith’s departure is addition by subtraction, because it will force Tyrus Thomas and Joakim Noah into more minutes. Drew Gooden might be helpful in this area as he should be compliment these players better than they would each other.

In the end it seems as if this was about getting rid of Ben Wallace more than anything else. But the price was to take on Cleveland’s equally bad free agent mistake of Larry Hughes. Chicago can benefit from this trade if one (or both) of Tyrus Thomas and Joakim Noah become successful with the absence of Wallace.

101 comments on “NBA 3 Way Deal Good For Most

  1. Brian Cronin

    I am really astonished that this was the best Chicago could get for Wallace. I really thought they’d be able to dump his salary for contracts better than Hughes (a la Q Rich).

  2. Brian Cronin

    Yeah, exactly.

    In the league, there are only two really, truly awful contracts, contracts so bad that I’d be hard pressed to even trade Zach Randolph for them, and I’d be glad to trade Randolph for basically anybody, and they belong to Larry Hughes and Kenyon Martin.

    And the Bulls couldn’t get rid of Wallace without avoiding either of those two?

    That sounds hard to believe.

  3. Mike K. (KnickerBlogger) Post author

    Brian – you might throw Nene in that list as well. His contract goes to 2012 and is a risk to miss a ton of games over that time. Ask yourself this, if you had to take an over/under for Nene averaging 41 games/year until 2012, which would you take?

  4. Brian Cronin

    Fair enough, Mike, I guess you could put Nene on to the list, too. I have him as just outside of the other two, so sure. Either way, it’s pretty amazing that Denver has two of the three worst contracts in the league.

  5. Ray

    Do you guys think Dolan shut Zeke down as far as trades go? We still have the same bums on our team so I guess they decided to mail it in in a way. I hope we are able to get another pick in this draft though. If Hansborough is still available id take Psycho T and put him behind “Now Were Workin’” Lee. Wow, what a bum Nene turned out to be. I wish him well and a speedy recovery. Draft here we come.

  6. dave crockett

    My only regret about the deadline from a NYK’s perspective is not picking up a Lowry/Ridnour/Watson/West-type point guard in a minor deal. Otherwise, no since dealing the kids, and the bad contracts simply have no value. The best shot at dealing Randolph and/or Curry will be this summer.

    Brian, I see your point about Chi in the abstract but I can’t imagine there was much of a market for Wallace and that contract. What non-contender could use him and take on his deal? Virtually no Western contender could use him. Chi might have been able to wait for the off-season, but by then perhaps his decline would be even more obvious. Chi’s haul is not impressive, but if forced to talk myself into it I’d say Drew Gooden is a bit better than what we’ve seen this year (career 51.5% TS), and potentially provides the flexibility to move one of those kids or Nocioni in the off-season.

    Off-topic a bit on Chi: if the rumors are true, and Paxson didn’t pull the trigger on Gasol because he wouldn’t give up Nocioni, do you think he’ll kick himself forever and ever?

  7. Caleb

    I dissent – this is a decent trade for Chicago, too. Consider Wallace for Hughes a wash. Ben still has a bit more, which is fine for Cleveland… but he’s on a fast downhill slide. His numbers and impact are way off. Hughes, on the other hand, is only 29 so shouldn’t get much worse the next two years. In two years I don’t know that he’s any less tradeable than Wallace.

    Meanwhile, they swap Joe Smith for Gooden… who’s had sort of a rough year but is basically a better version of Smith AND several years younger.

    Bottom line — the Bulls got younger without taking longer contracts, or losing anything in the talent department. Even in the short run, they’ll barely notice Wallace being gone, since Noah is rebounding at a higher rate, blocking almost as many shots and of course playing a world better on offense.

    I know it doesn’t solve Chicago’s problems but it’s a solid move.

  8. Ted Nelson

    Have to agree with Caleb.

    Q and Malik Rose combined are due about 25 mill over the next two years, while Hughes is due 26.5.

    I agree that it was mostly about getting rid of Wallace, but my gut is that the Bulls think Hughes’ skill set will fit into their rotation as a more refined Sefalosha.

    Paxson seems to be convinced that the Bulls don’t need many “scorers” to win, and it was working up until this year.

    Also, I would take Nocioni off the list of bigs who can’t score: he’s scoring 21.7 pts/40 with a 54.4 TS% and 36.5 3P%…

  9. Mulligan

    Considering that many on this board have advocated trading Randolph for K-Mart and that apparently Denver wanted to include Nene in a deal for Randolph … I can only conclude that Zach might not have the worst contract, but he’s surely on the cusp of making this list, no?

  10. Alec

    Am I the only one happy the Knicks stood pat? We didn’t take on any worse contracts! This might be a step in the right direction for rebuilding for 2010. Plus, I am hoping, that we get Colenglo next year too. The future almost looks bright…almost

  11. Caleb

    I’m with you – there was no rush at this deadline. No deal better than bad deal. It will get more urgent next year, and Feb. 2010 will be time for full-blown panic

  12. Mulligan

    I too am hoping Colangelo takes over – but could he ever really work with Dolan? He’s actually older than Dolan, which just reminds me of Dolan’s contentious relationship with his own father. Now here comes Colangelo the elder (a former owner himself) trying to fix the franchise, but Dolan’s ego will surely get in the way. I don’t even know what he could do, but he’d do it… like suddenly channel Donald Sterling and become really cheap or something.
    More likely though, he just won’t hire him, right?

  13. Caleb

    “I too am hoping Colangelo takes over – but could he ever really work with Dolan?…. Dolan’s ego will surely get in the way.”

    Crappy band, sleazy company, contempt for fans… ok, I won’t rattle off every sin of Dolan. But in 5+ years, have we ever seen him stick his finger in the (basketball) pie? What infuriates us is his hands-OFF approach, fiddling (on the bass) while IT burns down the team.

  14. Jimmy P

    Decent trade for the Bulls. They got a lot younger and got rid of a locker room cancer. Have only seen them play once or twice this year and Big Ben looked just awful. But the Bulls are an afterthough and not a contender for years.

    OK trade for Cleveland. Hughes was a waste of space and for the same money they’re going to find out if Ben wants to win another championship.

    Great news that the Knicks stood pat. You don’t want this gm making any more deals under any circumstances.

  15. jon abbey

    Ben Wallace might suck on the court now, but I find it seriously hard to believe he’s a “locker room cancer”, assuming that’s who you meant. I’d bet that Hughes would pretty much instantly be a bigger problem in that department after the first time he gets less than 30 minutes.

  16. Mulligan

    I don’t think he’d stick his finger in the pie per se, but he certainly meddles through his media policy, doesn’t he?

  17. Caleb

    Sure, he manages the thing like a big baby – the media policy is irritating, to mention self-defeating. But I don’t see why that would bother Colangelo much. It won’t stop him from talking to Peter Vecsey.

  18. Ted Nelson

    “But the Bulls are an afterthough and not a contender for years.”

    I realize how they’ve faired this season, but this is team that won 49 games last season, and made the second round in their 3rd straight trip to their playoffs. Their young core is only going to get better. I don’t understand how suddenly they’re one of the worst teams in the east and not a contender for years…

    re: Wallace as a locker room cancer: I know it doesn’t fit with his reputation, but something’s going on in Chicago and every time you here about a problem it involves Wallace’s attitude. The headband thing, him and Noah, etc.

  19. Mulligan

    Yeah now that I think about it, Dolan has meddled in the basketball department a few times. Houston’s extension? Vin Baker?

  20. jon abbey

    yeah, if the Bulls had beaten NJ in game 82 of the regular season last year, they would have flipped places with Cleveland, they would have gotten the ridiculously easy draw that Cleveland had, and they very well may have been the ones who got abused by San Antonio in the Finals.

  21. jon abbey

    well, duh, but my point is they were one regular season game away from possibly making the Finals, hardly “not a contender for years” as posited above.

  22. cwod

    yeah, i agree. they’ve had a rough year, but they still have the same players, basically, as past seasons. as noah and thomas get some more minutes, they might have something to build on.

    they just need a low-post presence, right?

  23. Mike K. (KnickerBlogger) Post author

    “they just need a low-post presence, right?”

    Larry’s Hughes’ would look good in a Knick uniform. But he’ll look even better when the Knicks send him home after 40 games with a mysterious illness only to buy his contract out a short month later. And his contract comes off the books a year shorter than Zach.

  24. Mike K. (KnickerBlogger) Post author

    Yeah I just don’t see what the Bulls really get out of this. Surely Wallace doesn’t fit in, but they’re giving themselves the same problem with Larry Hughes. Where does Hughes fit with Deng/Sefolosha? I guess he teams up well with Gordon and maybe Hinrich, but he’s certainly grossly overpaid for what he gives to a team.

    I do see Gooden being a good fit for them, but as I said before the best thing Chicago gets is room for their two young forwards.

    And yes you’re right about Nocioni – he’s a better offensive player than I gave him credit for. Funny in my mind when I think of him all I can imagine are his flops & defensive play.

  25. Brendan

    In re: the Bulls, and to pick up from yesterday, Ted Nelson-

    I don’t like Hughes as much as you do I think, and I regard him as fairly close to Gordon- offensively oriented and shoot first guards with little to no defensive presence; partly, I think I buy Hughes as a point much, much less than you do. I tend to think it’s an artifact of the years when 6’5 was smallish for a 2 guard, so people kept trying to move him over. Moreover, based on some of the early talk out of Chicago (realgm had something on this today), Gordon and maybe the Bulls see Hughes and Gordon as fairly close to each other as well. Last offseason they played contract hardball with Gordon, and early reports say he may take the tender and walk after next year. If that happens (I realize it’s an if) or if he gets a big free agent offer (Memphis?), all of a sudden the knock on effects of that trade get kinda gruesome. Even if it’s only Sefolosha who disappears in favor of Hughes, it’s still benching a solid young guy who can improve for a veteran who’s no better and perhaps worse.

    Also, here’s my other objection, which is a lot more general but I’ll throw it out there for your consideration. I think there’s a class of players in every league in every sport in the world who are best described as “just good enough to lose with.” These are the guys with potential (or “veteran presence”), usually great athleticism, and a modicum of production sufficient to make sure that year after year, teams stick with them and year after year they don’t develop or produce enough to justify their roles. The classic recent example I can think of is Tim Thomas; Eddy Curry is a fine example as well.

    Part of why I dislike this deal for Chicago is that I think both Gooden and Hughes are that kind of player, and only riding LeBron has partially disguised that. I remember reading on Bullsblog and elsewhere how much a lot of Bulls fans haaaaaated Joe Smith (quite possibly another of this kind of player) due to his presence keeping Thomas benched and Noah’s minutes somewhat limited. Now the Bulls have themselves a younger version of the same guy in Gooden, who has already clearly hit his peak (and fallen hard off of it) and who they’re more likely to resign. It may be that he’s a good backup plan if the team finally pulls off a big superstar deal this summer of which Thomas is a part; but the Bulls have talked about that for a while with no action, and I don’t even know who in the “real superstar” class would be available. Maybe Elton Brand? Would they even go for that considering the history? I think it’s more likely, given how gunshy they are, that they’ll use Gooden as an excuse to spend another year not playing Thomas, especially if they think they’re closer to a 49 win team on the cusp of things than they are to the rebuilding team they look like this year. Veteran presence and all that.

    Overall, I think the Bulls did ok on talent from this; but in the context of their team and they way they’re managed and coached, the potential knock-on effects of alienating Gordon and burying Thomas and Sefolosha are big hidden risks. Removing Wallace’s minutes and grumpiness are decent benefits, but not at the cost of them recommitting to their current non-plan of stocking up on so many pretty-good players that they can’t find minutes or money for all of them or space to let younger guys develop in. If they’ve got the guts to let Gooden and Hughes be the ones buried and make a giant Brand (or someone) offer this all changes, but that’s very much not their modus operandi of late. I think right now this trade locks them into essentially having the season they’re having this year for next year as well.

    Fun Drew Gooden fact: his PER has declined each of the last 3 seasons, falling 7 points in that time.

  26. Alec

    I think the Bulls made the Hughes deal, because Gordon is gone this summer. Sign and trade with someone…Clips for Brand?…Wiz for Jamison or Gil?…I don’t know, but he is gone like the Knicks chances of making the playoffs

  27. Indian guy

    Assuming all these guys r available which would u rather have and why
    derrick rose, oj mayo, jerryd bayless or eric Gordon

  28. TDM

    Because of injuries, the Cavs had to sign two NBADL just to compete tonight with the Wizards. They only had 6 healthy players. Their starting point guard is out for at least 6 weeks. And even if healthy, Detroit, Boston and arguably Orlando look better on paper than the Cavs. I still don’t see why they would make this move now. I guess I should be happy because I can’t see LBJ wanting to stick around in Cleveland in 2010 when Wallace is 36, and Z is 35 and account for $25 mil in cap space.

  29. jon abbey

    “better on paper than the Cavs. I still don’t see why they would make this move now. I guess I should be happy because I can’t see LBJ wanting to stick around in Cleveland in 2010 when Wallace is 36, and Z is 35 and account for $25 mil in cap space.”

    their deals both expire when his would, so moot point.

    I’ve read a ton of analysis of this deal, I just think the bottom line is whether LeBron likes it or not. whether it actually helps them doesn’t matter, the point is to keep him happy going forward, and Ferry put himself in a position where he had almost no flexibility except for a sideways shuffle like this.

  30. TDM

    “their deals both expire when his would”

    You’re correct – I missed that. However, that only deals with the issue of being strapped by their cap situation. My point that LBJ won’t want to re-up with the Cavs in 2010 is still valid. As you pointed out, Ben and Z come off the books in 2010 as well, but the Cavs will have to retool at the PF and C positions right when LBJ’s K expires and he’s looking for a new deal.

  31. Spider Cider

    Cleveland may not look much better on paper, but surely they are a very well constructed team now. They’ve got 4 viable PF/C guys who can all rebound and play defense, 2 of whom can also shoot out to about 18-20 feet. In the back court they’ve got a bevy of outside shooters to open the floor for LeBron, and both Pavlovic and West are solid, if unspectacular, defenders, and Wally isn’t really a liability on D (except against really fast guys). Devin Brown is a sort of do-it-all-but-not-too-well guy who can play 1-3. All of this centered around arguably the most all-round dominant player in the game today. I think they’re an incredibly well constructed team now, and should be able to challenge Detroit or Boston if they’re healthy and all their players manage to gel in time. Chicago was just desperate, and Seattle was just trying to dump salary. Makes sense for all parties, but I think Cleveland got the best of this deal, by far. A lot of people seem to be making a fuss about how they got so much older, but it’s not like any of the guys they got rid of had any upside. Wally and Joe Smith expire next year I believe, West is young, and obviously Wallace is on the downswing, but they don’t need as much out of Big Ben as Chicago did. If he can give them 8 rebounds, 2 blocks, solid defensive play, and no illusions about his offensive prowess, he’s a valuable commodity. Above all it gives them major depth in the front court, which is incredibly valuable, especially in the playoffs. Their bigs won’t need to worry so much about fouling now, which means they can be really aggressive on defense. And Drew Gooden, though serviceable, is possibly the most inconsistent player in the league, and he’s kind of stupid in game. He dribbles too much, takes to many long J’s (due to no post game whatsoever), and generally forces the action instead of letting the game come to him.

  32. Duff Soviet Union

    “I think there’s a class of players in every league in every sport in the world who are best described as “just good enough to lose with.” These are the guys with potential (or “veteran presence”), usually great athleticism, and a modicum of production sufficient to make sure that year after year, teams stick with them and year after year they don’t develop or produce enough to justify their roles. The classic recent example I can think of is Tim Thomas; Eddy Curry is a fine example as well.” This description also seems to fit Jamal Crawford pretty well.

  33. caleb

    Larry hughes and gordon aren’t remotely similar. Ben is a slightly better version of nate robinson – pure scorer, but even better shooter. Can play the point in a pinch. No d at either guard spot.

    Hughes, on the other hand, is an older, richer version of sefalossha. He’s a defender. He led the league in steals a few years ago in dc, or close to it. He’s not a lockdown defender bc he gambles too much and he’s not strong enough, but :e’s pretty good. On the other end of the court, however, he’s pretty bad. He is a pure slasher but teams have figured out that he is one of the worst shooters in the league, so they lay off him which hurts the slashing game. Plus, he’s a little older now.

    He’s in the trade as salary match for wallace, no other reason. Maybe 5 percent as insurance, an extra guard if gordon leaves.

    My guess is that gordon either signs the one year tender, or gets a mid-level and the bulls match. Or a sign and trade, around that size contract. There might be a gm or two willing to offer more, but it won’t be memphis or philly.

    Personally, I think the mid-level might be reasonable… Jason terry is a very similar player and he doesn’t seem outrageously overpaid at 5 yrs and 35m.

  34. Spider Cider

    On a side note, I hope you’re all looking forward to being throttled by my Raptors. Feel the wrath of Calderon! Mwahahaha!

  35. jon abbey

    “My point that LBJ won’t want to re-up with the Cavs in 2010 is still valid. ”

    quite possibly, but one school of thought says that nothing Cleveland could do before then would make him stay. the point is that he obviously wanted some kind of deal, he even asked for it publicly, and Cleveland is so hamstrung by their cap usage and lack of non-essential youth that this was the best they can do. that’s why I’m saying what matters is what LeBron thinks, not publicly, but privately.

  36. Spider Cider

    I can’t believe the shot Randolph just took. What a selfish ass. Regardless of the outcome, he easily could have passed the ball up court for a much better shot, instead of dribbling to half-court and heaving up a half-court prayer (which went in, but still).

  37. jimmy p

    “I find it seriously hard to believe he’s a “locker room cancer”, ”

    John Abbey you might be right. Suffice it to say he’s not a natural born leader who lifted a pinky in Detroit or Chicago to help the coaches. But cancer is underserved.

    “Their young core is only going to get better. I don’t understand how suddenly they’re one of the worst teams in the east and not a contender for years”

    Ted Nelson, you might be referring to someone else’s comments because I didn’t say that they were one of the worst in the east. I do think they are not a contender and won’t be for years. The Bulls look to me like a good midling team. A lot like the Milwaukee Bucks of the 80′s.

    Very curious to see how this plays out in Cleveland.

  38. jimmy p

    “I find it seriously hard to believe he’s a “locker room cancer”, ”

    John Abbey you might be right. Suffice it to say he’s not a natural born leader who lifted a pinky in Detroit or Chicago to help the coaches. But cancer is underserved.

    “Their young core is only going to get better. I don’t understand how suddenly they’re one of the worst teams in the east and not a contender for years”

    Ted Nelson, you might be referring to someone else’s comments because I didn’t say that they were one of the worst in the east. I do think they are not a contender and won’t be for years. The Bulls look to me like a good midling team. A lot like the Milwaukee Bucks of the 80′s.

    Very curious to see how this plays out in Cleveland.

  39. Spider Cider

    Well, I feel like an ass. I cannot believe Toronto lost that game. You may berate me for being an ass, I’ll understand.

  40. caleb

    what’s wrong with 6/16 3 pt?

    “We didn’t try to save the day with that one savior bad contract that goes on for a lifetime.”
    – Isiah Thomas, 2/22/08

    I think he’s reading KB.

  41. Brian Cronin

    did Isiah mention that that’s precisely what he tried just last summer? knucklehead.

    I dunno if we should knock the guy even when he says something smart.

  42. jon abbey

    so the level of tolerance is so low now that you think fans should be happy that he didn’t manage to pick up one of the very few worse contracts in the league than Randolph’s, and ignore the fact that he did pick up “that one savior bad contract that goes on for a lifetime” less than a year ago? we also have no idea what trades he wanted to make that the other team turned down, I’m not giving him any credit for inactivity.

    going forward, if this organization makes a move, any move, that brightens the future in any way, then I’ll give them credit. Colangelo and a stud PG in the draft would make me very happy, for instance. until then, color me permanently pissed off.

  43. Brian Cronin

    Odds are that he was talking about getting either Nene or Vince Carter, and I think the team is better off that he did neither of those, right?

  44. jon abbey

    yeah, but Brian, should I really be impressed that he didn’t trade for one of the two worst contracts in the league? I don’t walk around congratulating my friends every day they don’t murder someone either.

  45. dave crockett

    Not digging the hole any deeper by avoiding a monumentally stupid deal at the deadline is cause for relief (if not celebration). It’s one less mess to clean up after Thomas is gone.

  46. nj hoop

    If Thomas had traded for Carter, I think this site would have crashed from the number of angry posters. And I for one would have officially quit as a Knick fan. I agree with most posters, no deals was a good thing. But I get really worried when I hear the theory that Isiah’s going nowhere, because Dolan is the kind of stubborn a-hole who doesn’t want to admit he made a colossal mistake a) hiring the guy b)giving him 2 roles which he sucks at and c) giving him the extension last year. The idea that Thomas could be back next year in any capacity really bothers me, I’d like to think Dolan will show a little sense and bring in Colangelo to try and clean up this mess, and let him pick a coach as well.

  47. ess-dog

    I’m surprised that Zeke has completely abandoned going to Curry in the post. Even though Randolph look pretty good last night, he still is nowhere near the efficient post scorer that Curry is. Sure his defense is awful, but I think we should at least go to Curry until he’s forced to sit b/c of a defensive lapse. Also, if Curry could lose 20 lbs. he’d be so much more effective. Can’t anyone on the training staff work on that?
    That being said, it’s hard to chalk this win up to much more than Crawford just getting hot like he does once every ten games.

  48. Ted Nelson

    “Larry’s Hughes’ would look good in a Knick uniform.”

    Could be a good option for the summer: Randolph for Hughes and a future 1st and/or one of their young players… Depends if Zeke’s around. Randolph seems to have beaten out Curry as the “franchise bigman.”

    re: Nocioni He can shoot a bit and he’s very good at moving without the ball (Tiago Splitter reminds me of him in this second regard). He’s still no offensive force and not really that big of a man, for the NBA at least, the Bulls could still use another big who can score. Maybe their young guys…

    I agree that Hughes is grossly overpaid, but I guess no team was willing to give them a salary break on Wallace.
    In the end they get a chance to sort of start over and turn it around this season, what you could call a younger Joe Smith in Gooden, Hughes who I don’t know what they plan to do with but not a bad guy to have in your backcourt, and the shot to look at two failed 1st rounders. Cedric Simmons was someone I liked coming out of college and fits the Bulls’ mold of a young athletic big a raw offensive game (unfortunately he’s also failed to get off the bench in 2 different organizations). Shannon Brown I wasn’t a huge fan of, but he’s an alright player I guess.

    Would be interested to see what other offers were on the table. The only other one I can recall hearing about was Q and Malik Rose.

  49. Ted Nelson

    Brendan-

    I still don’t see Hughes and Gordon as similar in most respects. I agree with Caleb.
    Overall, Hughes isn’t a shooter, he’s adaquate but not great at the point, and if he’s disciplined he’s an above average defender at least. He can lock down some PGs with his combination of size and quickness, as he did for Cleveland on their way to the finals last year, during that stretch he also ran the point a lot of the time (granted running the point on a team with LeBron doesn’t seem like such a daunting task).

    As you said, both Hughes and Gooden have become increasingly less productive for the past few years, maybe a change of scenery will do them some good. Chicago seeme like they were really having fun on the court during the playoffs last season, they need to regain that.

    I mean was Gooden’s peak really at 23 years old? Also they moved two front court players for one, clearling minutes in the process.
    And Hughes has fallen off since arriving in Cleveland, he was an All-Star in Washington. Will be regain that form? I don’t know.

    “the potential knock-on effects of alienating Gordon and burying Thomas and Sefolosha are big hidden risks.”

    As far as I can tell they already alienated Gordon this summer. The guy’s got an amazing shooting touch, but I think he’s pretty replaceable. The only risk in losing him is that he’s one of their only “scorers”, but as us Knicks’ fans know “scorers” aren’t exactly at a premium in the NBA. I think the Bulls are smart not to give him too much money, the way they’ve handled him and Lu Deng might have had some negative consequences though.

    I think one of the reasons for this deal was to “uncover” Thomas, not bury him. Last night the guy played 34 minutes in a Bulls win over the Nuggets and his stat line read like this: 9-13, 18 pts, 11 reb, 4 asts, 2 stls, 3 blks, 1 TO. I think Gooden’s a solid player, but I don’t think he’s going to bury Thomas.

    In general, the Bulls don’t seem to be an organization that plays guys because of their reputations or salaries, at least Scott Skiles wasn’t that kind of a coach. This is a team that told Tim Thomas to stay home.

  50. jon abbey

    judging from last night, the Bulls might be best off just sending Hughes (and possibly Gooden also) home a la Tim Thomas, let them collect their salaries and let the kids play.

  51. Ted Nelson

    Indian guy-

    I really love Rose, I don’t think I’ve seen enough of the other guys though.
    A bigman who plays defense would also be nice, maybe a Brook Lopez? Thabeet seems like too much a risk/project for the Knicks right now and Hibbert’s a bit slow for the first half of the lottery.

    Jimmy P-

    I was, in fact, referring to a previous post… I would obviously agree with the “are not a contender” part of your statement, but Deng, Hinrich, Noah, Thomas, Gordon, Nocioni, Sefalosha, Duhon even Hughes, Gooden, and Gray… that’s 11 deep with 4 young guys rounding out the roster and another mid-first on the way this season. Even if that group can’t contend by itself, they’ve got the pieces to get any deal they want done. All that young talent and Hughes is their only bad contract. I mean I hate the Bulls as much as any Knicks’ fan should, but I respect the way Paxson’s run the team.

    Jon-

    See your point, but if you were friends with Hitler and Charles Manson you might…

    What’s general opinion out there on whether Zeke’s coming back next year??? I really have no idea at this point.
    What’s the best case scenario if Zeke sticks around? If someone competent’s brought in? I guess it seems like cap space, draft picks, and Lee, Balkman, Robinson, Chandler, and a few of the other guys is the only logical way to go, right? I mean no one’s giving much value for anyone on the roster outside of Lee and maybe Crawford unless we go back into the shorter contracts for mammouth contracts other teams don’t want mode…

  52. ess-dog

    oh yeah, and give it up for Nate playing great D on Calderon. Hey I’m trying to look on the brite side here.

  53. Funky

    How good of a defender is Lopez? I just don’t see him being able to erase the mistakes of the team to the extent that Thabeet would. The guy has been on a ridiculous tear in terms of blocking shots recently. He’s also a very good rebounder and not as useless on offense as a guy like Dennis Rodman. It seems that he could easily lead the NBA in that category (if given the minutes). The problem is that Isiah is on the record saying that blocked shots are not important (right before he traded Dikembe Mutumbo) so it’s very unlikely we draft him if Isiah is still in charge at the time of the draft. But I’m still pulling for him if Rose isn’t available.

  54. Owen

    I like Thabeet, and I would love to have someone like him playing for the Knicks, but his rebounding doesn’t look to be as strong as one would like, missed a big bound today too….

  55. Indian guy

    if rose, mayo, gordon or bayless is available than we take them because pg is r biggest need and curry and Randolph and lee would take alot if time away from thabeet but he’s a great defender at 4 blocks a game and a good rebounder in about 8 boards and not a bad scorer with 10 pts a game he’s option number 5 tho for me

  56. matty

    i think curry should ride the bench untill someone smacks his and tells him he make millions each year and all you have to do is attempt!! to block some shots, attempt to rebound and attempt to box somebody out! he is the center on the ny knicks he dosnt have any skills he cant even catch the ball come on now. if i was on his team i would probably fall asleep each night too. give lee center he will probably get beat every time but atleast he will learn from his mistakes unlike others how many times are you gonna get caught with your pants down before you get a grip!

  57. Indian guy

    while thabeet would be a nice pickup he seems to be more of a role player, a good one albeit but we need a franchise player( not eddy curry) someone like brook lopez or beasley or derrick rose

  58. Funky

    Agreed on rose and beasley. I wonder how good Lopez will really be at the next level, though. I should catch some Stanford games.

  59. jon abbey

    Thabeet and Lopez both average 7.9 boards a game this year, Thabeet plays about 2 more minutes per game.

    I really really really want a PG in the draft if at all possible, but could live with Thabeet (who is still developing), not with Lopez (who has mostly developed).

  60. Ben R

    I really think it is between three players for us this year; Rose, Bayless and Mayo. I would be shocked if all three are off the board by the time we pick.

    I would then sign JR Smith this off-season because his value is really low right now. I think we might be able to get him for 3-4 mil a year for 3 years. He is a bit of a headcase but an incredible offensive talent over 20 pts per 36 with a 58% TS% over the last two seasons. Plus he is from NY and is only 22.

    If we did that then we would have a pretty good start to building our team:

    Rookie PG – Nate
    Smith – Nate
    Balkman – Chandler
    Lee – Jeffries
    Curry – Servicable backup

    Curry and Jeffries are only until we can get better players in those spots.

    We then move Randolph and Crawford for whatever we can get (hopefully including a sevicable backup center) and buyout Richardson and James.

    Down the raod we move Curry and Jeffries.

  61. Ess-dog

    As bad as we need a point guard, if we get the first pick I would still take Beasley at the PF. He is a rare bird and a future all-star that you can’t pass up. Can he be moved to the 3 spot? Who knows. Rose would be my second choice. Thabeet probably won’t fall out of the top 8. I would take a chance on Mayo at the 4-6 spots… he could be a great fit in nyc. Augustine could be a nice pick later on (we could trade down to 12-13 and get a nice player AND maybe pick up another young player like Jarrett Jack.)

  62. Ray

    Every prospect in the draft may move up or down in rank depending on how things go during March madness. If UConn has a strong MM then Thabeets stock will rise. We will also see how some of the other prospects do under the MM pressure. Im not sold on Lopez….to me hes just a tall guy. I would definitely get a PG out of this draft. Id take Mayo. He give us versatility…shooting….high basketball IQ….hes supposed to be super coachable…hes big for a PG and can also play SG. Huge upside. The only reason why his stock is down is because USC is not ranked high. Knicks need to get a PG. This draft is full of them so I hope they do the right thing.

  63. Ken "The Animal" Bannister

    My dream/ideal situation for the offseason would be…

    David Stern fixes the lottery (again) and the Knicks get the #1 pick in return for the Dolan’s selling the team to a consortium headed by P.Diddy, Russell Simmons and Spike Lee. Isiah is fired, tarred and feathered, put in the stocks in front of the Garden, and allowed to be publicly mocked by Matthew Modine. Colangelo is named GM.

    The Knicks trade down with whoever gets the 2nd pick in return for taking either Fattie I or Fattie II two off our hands for expiring contracts. Knicks nab Derrick Rose. All NYers have a feast resplendent with the finest meats and cheeses in all the land.

    Oh, and I also think Eric Gordon would be nifty

  64. jon abbey

    “I would then sign JR Smith this off-season because his value is really low right now.”

    possibly true a week ago, but he scored a career-high 43 last night.

  65. Spider Cider

    JR Smith is still JR Smith. I don’t understand this idea that players will suddenly change behavior. With Smith, it’s never been a question of talent, it’s been a question of desire and intelligence. I highly doubt he’ll ever acquire those 2 traits if he hasn’t picked them up in 22 years of life.

  66. caleb

    Thabeet has had some good games in the last few weeks since I said he wasn’t a valid NBA prospect, but he still reminds me more of Shawn Bradley or Manute Bol or Mohammed Saer Sene, than he does Dikembe Mutombo. He still isn’t really a basketball player, just a shot-blocker. I guess the strongest point in his favor is that he is showing fast and steady improvement, at a big-time program. I don’t think I would pick him in the lottery or even top 20, but some GM might. It wouldn’t surprise me to see him go back to school, see if that improvement keeps up.

    On the other hand, he’s already 21… two years older than Lopez.

    Lopez is another guy who doesn’t meet the hype in my book, but he seems like a player who is pretty good at everything and, at 19, should have plenty of upside. I’d peg his true value at around #10, but if Spencer Hawes could get picked there, someone will grab Lopez earlier.

    I think Mike Beasley is easily the best player in the draft, so if we win the lottery, I’d grab him and worry about trading Lee and Randolph later. We’d be dealing from strength, at least. The only trade from #1 I’d consider is something like MIke Conley AND Rudy Gay, or Gay & the #2 or 3 pick.

    I’m with the overwhelming majority here, in saying that Derrick Rose would be great to have.

    Anything after #2, I’d try and trade down for multiple picks or very young, good players.

    I do like OJ Mayo, but not that high. I don’t think either he or Gordon can play the point in the NBA, but what I like about Mayo is that he looks like a really strong defender. He took apart Derrick Rose in that game and I heard one scout compare him to Bruce Bowen. If he were available at #4 or 5, and there wasn’t a good trade available, I’d be prefer him to Gordon or Bayless (another combo guard) — those guys seem more offense-focused, which isn’t the real need. I haven’t seen much of Bayless, though… we discussed him on the board a few days ago and he definitely is intriguing.

    I think there are several good point guards who will be available between #10-25… Ty Lawson and Darren Collison are my faves, but Augustin looks good, too. If we trade down for multiple picks, any of them would be great. They’d also be worth trading Nate or Wilson Chandler, just to get a real PG.

  67. jon abbey

    “JR Smith is still JR Smith. I don’t understand this idea that players will suddenly change behavior. With Smith, it’s never been a question of talent, it’s been a question of desire and intelligence. I highly doubt he’ll ever acquire those 2 traits if he hasn’t picked them up in 22 years of life.”

    huh? did you room with him or something? the guy should be a senior in college now, and he dropped 43, including 8 three pointers, just last night. he was on a pretty dysfunctional team in NO, and has done his best with inconsistent minutes and shots behind Carmelo and Iversion in Denver. he’s still got tons of upside if he gets more consistent, which is certainly possible (Turkoglu is a good example of someone who blossomed at a later age this year).

    anyway, as far as it relates to this conversation, Denver has an option on him for less than $3 million next year, he’s not going anywhere.

  68. Spider Cider

    Jon: Smith’s in his 3rd (4th?) year in the league, he’s consistently exhibited poor judgment on the court, has consistently been a sub-par defender, has not improved significantly in any season, and contributes nothing beyond inconsistent scoring. Can you give me an example of a player who followed a similar path and eventually blossomed into anything more than a marginal NBA player? Off the top of my head, Tracy McGrady is the closest thing I can think of, but he exhibited some defensive prowess early in his career, and more importantly, improved every year in his first few seasons. I’m really curious as to whether there has been a player (or players, preferably) with a similar career path who eventually blossomed into something close to a “star”. To my eyes, Smith just doesn’t have “it”.

  69. Ben R

    JR Smith is not an inconsistant scorer. Over both of the last two years he has averaged over 20 pts per 36 minutes with a TS% of over 58%. Only three other guards have done that; Ginobli, Martin, and Maggette.

    While I admit he is a bit of a malcontent and his defense is not great he is not an inconsistant scorer, he is an amazing scorer. As for his issues I think if a team gives him a legitimate shot to be a starter and a main part of the offense he would be happy. His minutes have been inconsistant and his role has been undefined since he entered the league.

    As for defense he is by no means great but he is better than Crawford, while being a much much better scorer, and with someone like Mayo or Rose at the point and Balkman at the 3 we can afford to have a mediocre defender at the 2.

    As for his contract, he is a free agent next year the offer Denver can make is a qualifing offer not a team option.

  70. Ben R

    JR Smith offensivly:

    Year 1 – 47.8% TS% – 28.8% 3pt% – 15.1 pts per 36
    Year 2 – 51.5% TS% – 37.1% 3pt% – 15.4 pts per 36
    Year 3 – 58.5% TS% – 39.0% 3pt% – 20.0 pts per 36
    Year 4 – 58.9% TS% – 40.3% 3pt% – 21.6 pts per 36

    He has improved at least a little every year he has been in the league taking a huge leap between year two and year three.

    While it seems his improvement is leveling off his offense is already at an elite level. All we would need him to do is maintain it.

  71. Ben R

    Sorry to post again but here is McGrady over his first four seasons:

    Year 1 – 50.5% TS% – 34.1% 3pt% – 13.8 pts per 36
    Year 2 – 50.4% TS% – 22.9% 3pt% – 14.9 pts per 36
    Year 3 – 50.9% TS% – 27.7% 3pt% – 17.7 pts per 36
    Year 4 – 52.1% TS% – 35.5% 3pt% – 24.1 pts per 36

    Smith has been a better scorer than McGrady in each of his first four years. McGrady was a much better rebounder, a better passer and probably a better defender but as a scorer he was worse.

    Also as a reference point here are Kobe’s stats:

    Year 1 – 54.4% TS% – 37.5% 3pt% – 17.6 pts per 36
    Year 2 – 54.8% TS% – 34.1% 3pt% – 21.4 pts per 36
    Year 3 – 54.9% TS% – 26.7% 3pt% – 18.9 pts per 36
    Year 4 – 54.6% TS% – 31.9% 3pt% – 21.2 pts per 36

    I am not saying that JR Smith will ever be close to Kobe because Kobe is a better passer, better rebounder, and much better defender but as a scorer I actually think Smith has been better in at least year 3 and 4 than Kobe was in year 3 and 4.

    I realize that Smith is not the complete player that both McGrady and Kobe are but looking at those numbers don’t you think Smith is at least worth taking a flyer on since he compares favorably, at least on the offensive end, to both of them so far.

  72. Ted Nelson

    I don’t know how much of a PG Gordon or Mayo is. Bayless is also more of a combo-guard. Even Rose has a long way to go in that department, but I guess any freshman PG does. Rose is a special player (who I really like), but I think he has an equal chance of becoming the next Marbury/Francis as the next Kidd… it’s really up to him, if he puts in the work he could be a top PG in the NBA. The early indications seem pretty good.

    Ess-Dog: On paper I think you’re right that you can’t pass up Beasley, the guy’s amazing. For me it would really come down to attitude. Beasley’s got a chance to be a Big Dog Robinson type if the knocks against him are true, or he has a chance to be a Carmelo Anthony type (maybe even better because of his size and shot blocking). Rose, to me, could fall into a Marbury/Francis career path if he gets lazy, but he could also be more of a Deron Williams or Kidd with a jumper. I doubt anyone’s taking a PG #1 over a bigger guy, but at the same time not many contenders are built around scoring combo-forwards…

    J.R. Smith is an impressive scorer, but I think the Knicks need some hard working “character” guys right now a lot more than they need another scorer who doesn’t play D and has a bad attitude. For a lot of teams Smith would be a great pick up, but the Knicks are a mess right now they need to clean-up their house before inviting Artest or Smith to come in.
    Jon, Smith was on a bad team in NO, but he pissed off a really well respected guy with an amazing work ethic in Byron Scott to the point where the team was dying to give him away. The Bulls then turned around and literally gave him away before he ever played for them in a Tim Thomas type move. All the indications I’ve seen are that the guy needs to mature and has a questionable attitude. You put him on San Antonio and I don’t think it’ll be an issue, but in the circus act that is MSG, there’s a great chance that he’s gonna be a problem. Not to mention that to bring him here we’d probably have to overpay him…

    Caleb: I could definitely see Zeke taking Mayo, and I guess I could see Mayo in NY… he seems like an enigma at this point…so much hype, both positive and negative. I liked the idea for that article in ESPN: Will the real OJ Mayo please stand up? Not that it really answered the question.

    I haven’t seen enough of Lopez, but he seems like a solid if unspectacular, big. At this point I guess the Knicks need to take a shot at someone with more upside than taking a guy who might end up being a rich man’s Curtis Borchardt. But, like I said haven’t seen much of Lopez.

    One guy I’d love to see the Knicks pick up in the late 1st is Victor Claver. He’s really inconsistent and still lacks confidence at times, but he’s got a lot of ability and a good head for the game. He’s a really long defender and has good range on his shot. Half-way decent ballhandler with some explosiveness and a solid passer. Also a good rebounder at the 3. If he enters this year’s draft, he’ll probably end up being another European steal in the second for San Antonio.

  73. jon abbey

    “As for his contract, he is a free agent next year the offer Denver can make is a qualifing offer not a team option.”

    ok, so he’s a restricted free agent, big difference from being unrestricted. I still don’t think he’s going anywhere.

    Ted:

    “Smith was on a bad team in NO, but he pissed off a really well respected guy with an amazing work ethic in Byron Scott”

    let’s not get too revisionist here, Byron Scott was a laughing stock when he left NJ, where Eddie Jordan supposedly ran the team with Scott being a figurehead. he’s admittedly making those critics look silly this year, but he certainly wasn’t “well respected” by anyone except Laker fans who remembered his sweet J until pretty recently.

  74. Artie

    Ode to a Knicks Fan (aka Where Oh Where Has Larry Brown Gone?)

    Twas midpoint of the season, and all thru the house
    Not a fan was in sight ,they were out getting soused!

    No playoffs again, causing such stress
    The house that St. James built was surely a mess.

    ‘Fire Isaih ‘chants were sung in the Garden with care
    In hopes that our new coach , soon would be there!

    But as the vocal were snuggled deep in their seats
    Security was conniving, plotting their defeat.

    With Dolan in denial, IT. a dunce cap
    They’d just settled down for a mid-season chat.

    When out on 7th Avenue there arose such a clatter
    An army of fans, with ‘Fire Isiah’ placards!

    Away to the bathroom I flew like a flash
    Tore open the toilet, threw up my mashed!

    The moon on the breast of the newest-Knick Zach
    Gave luster to his stats, but I want Channing back!

    But what to my wondering eyes should appear
    But a shiny stretch limo , with Steph in the rear!
    Approaching an intern, such a fine shapely sort
    He was scoring again, but not on the court.

    “Are you getting in?” …he didn’t get out
    She obliged without thinking, her future now in doubt.

    More rapid than eagles, our losses they came
    My questions, unanswered, I’ll call them by name

    “Where’s Chandler”, “where’s Balkman”, “where’s Morris “ I wondered
    “Why Curry”, “why Randolph”….Isiah has blundered .

    To the top of the key, no defense to call
    Now dunk away, dunk away, dunk away all!

    As dry heaves that before the hangover stray
    The bad taste in my mouth just won’t go away.

    And then Anuka Browne, I heard on the news
    The prancing and pawing of Isiah made her sue
    As she put out her hand and paried IT’s peck
    Down the chimney came St. James, with an 11 Million dollar check.

    He was dressed all in leather, from his head to his toes
    But his ego wasn’t tarnished from losses(I’d lost count).
    A jumble of players they’d aquirred in fits
    A contact extension ,for IT, are you nuts?!

    His eyes…how he squinted, his dimples how empty
    His cheeks were like roses from embarrassment a plenty!

    His droll little mouth was drawn up in a pout
    He uttered nary a word as the losses, they did mount!

    The stump of a ticket he held in his paw
    Front row seats to witness, the Bricks in free-fall!

    He had a broad face and a round little tummy
    That shook when he roared at employees that were dummies.

    He was chubby and plump a right nasty old elf
    His father must be crying in spite of himself!

    A wink from ‘our leader’ and a nod of his head
    Soon gave me to know, this team is dead.

    He spoke not a word but gave us a smirk
    The seats are all filled, Knick fans must be jerks!

    Where’s our coaching we wonder
    Where’s our defense, not in sight
    A point guard we need
    Not Zach, he’s a blight!

    He’s supposed to be our coach
    Our leader, our saint
    But Ray Charles can see
    Red Holtzman he aint!

    As we gallantly fight back
    From early game blunders
    An up-chuck from Crawford
    Is all we can muster.

    With Isiah at the draft
    Like its his personal bingo
    We’re longing for Frazier, Monroe…even Wingo!

    But David Stern’s our savior
    Colangelo , we will adore
    Please, David, make him come here
    You’re ratings will soar!

    But I heard him explain as he drove out of sight
    “The Knicks are the Bricks, until Isiah takes flight”

  75. Ted Nelson

    I think it’s fair enough to say that Byron Scott was still well respected around the NBA. The guy is still the first one at the Hornets’ practice facility every morning working out. The perception among fans may be one things, but the only things I’ve heard and read from people who actually know Byron Scott are good things, particularly about his character which was moreso what I was referring to than his coaching.

    My point is just that I don’t see how you can argue that Smith has a good attitude given the evidence I’ve seen. Byron Scott wanted the guy off his team and basically publically denounced him as a brat (at whch point, as I remember, his father was the one who spoke up and said he’d grow up), the Bulls didn’t even want him on their roster, and his actions/mouth get him as much media coverage as his game. Not to mention that he has a reputation as a no show on D (can’t say I’ve seen Denver play much this season so maybe he’s developed).

  76. Frank

    “i think curry should ride the bench untill someone smacks his and tells him he make millions each year and all you have to do is attempt!! to block some shots, attempt to rebound and attempt to box somebody out! he is the center on the ny knicks he dosnt have any skills he cant even catch the ball come on now. if i was on his team i would probably fall asleep each night too. give lee center he will probably get beat every time but atleast he will learn from his mistakes unlike others how many times are you gonna get caught with your pants down before you get a grip!”

    I agree completely. I think what Curry needs to do is get away from all his off-season workouts and start from scratch. Don’t know what qualifies Mark Aguirre to be the guru for the New York bigs, but clearly he is not effective. Curry needs to go to Pete Newell’s big man camp, break down all his fundamentals again, and learn how to play basketball. Look at the amazing progress Bynum made — I think I read something about how he made a tremendous improvement just during that camp.

    Knowing Curry and his laziness though, he’ll probably refuse to go, thinking that he’s too big a star to go.

  77. Ray

    Artie that was a damn long ode you wrote there. I was looking at Rose yesterday and he did remind me a lot of Marbury. He can see the floor if he wants to but kids want to shine when thegy get to the NBA. I dont see him getting many assists at the next level. I just think Mayo has more upside b/c of size and defensive ability. If USC makes it to the madness and they have a good showing what everyone says about Mayo will be different. Its just a matter of time. One person who does not impress is Chase Budinger who looks like the next Mike Dunleavy. He can shoot but cant create his own shot. I think Curry will be gone before next season and I see us keeping Zach for some reason. Hey, he can score and rebound with the best of them. Without curry in the paint there is more of a flow to things because Zach does pass better than Curry. They have to cut his time down when he holds the ball in the blocks. Maybe make him go into his move faster. Id take Bayless over Augustin….DJ seems to short for the next level and unless he has crazy NAte athleticism it just wont translate. It all depends where we draft at and whose available. PG is a must.

  78. Spider Cider

    Ben R: Is it not possible to be very good, but also inconsistent? I haven’t looked at Smith’s standard deviation in terms of per game scoring, but going strictly from memory (which is admittedly spotty), I seem to recall Smith being the type of player who fluctuates rather wildly between incredible scoring outputs and below average scoring outputs. Maybe I’m wrong here, but this is the impression I have from watching him play and checking out box scores. Either way, I’m still far from convinced that Smith is a good player.

  79. Ben R

    Artie – I like the ode especially thesection:

    “Where’s Chandler”, “where’s Balkman”, “where’s Morris “ I wondered
    “Why Curry”, “why Randolph”….Isiah has blundered .

    Great stuff.

    As for the draft I think I like Bayless more than Mayo. Bayless is younger, scoring more (with more efficiency) and has more assists with less turnovers. His defense has looked good as well, not quite as much defensive upside as Mayo though.

    Overall for me it goes Rose, Bayless, Mayo, Augustin. I think at least one and maybe two of those players will be availiable in the 6-8 range which is probably as bad as our pick will end up.

    If we get lucky and win the lottery I would try and trade the #1 and get one of the young point guards and another asset instead of taking Beasley who does not fill a need and is a bad defender.

    Our two best players play the 3 and 4, the last thing we need is another 3/4 in Beasley.

    As for Smith I think Denver is going to let him walk, his minutes are down and they were shopping him as an expiring during the trade deadline.

    He is a low risk/high reward type signing. If he gets his attitude straightened out he is an all-star type SG if he does not then we simply get rid of him. I would do a three year contract which I think would be in both our and his best interests because if he plays well he will be due for a huge payout in three years and if he does not play well we can cut our losses, at the same time alot of our other big contracts expire.

    He is from NY and if we can guarantee the starting job I think he would be interested.

  80. Ben R

    Spider Cider – The fact that his TS% and points per 36 are so high makes alot of poor scoring games very unlikely. To maintain his very high TS% and output of over 20 points per 36 means he would have to greatly exceed that every time he has a bad game to maintain those averages.

    I think his scoring output is inconsistant because his minutes are inconsistant. His output per minute seems pretty solid. I could be wrong but it is very hard to be that efficient if you are routinely having bad games.

  81. jon abbey

    he’s actually from NJ, but I agree with the rest. a 3 guard rotation of Crawford, Smith and a PG from the draft would look a lot better than what we’ve had this year.

  82. Ben R

    jon – I did not know it was NJ but at least its still close to home.

    As for the rotation I was thinking PG from the draft, Smith, Nate and then trade Crawford because his value is at an all time high.

    But either way Smith would give us our first high scoring, high efficiency SG in years.

  83. Ken "The Animal" Bannister

    I think the Euraptors lead the league in white men with truly ugly balding hairdos (Brezec and Nesterovic)

  84. David Crockett

    I’ll put up a Raps thread for the second half. But I have some grading to do. See you guys later.

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