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Saturday, January 04, 2014

OT: NBA Monthly Thread - January 2014

I estimate only 10-12 Primates care about the NBA, but with our own thread, we won’t detract from what this site is really about:

the Beatles…

... and video games.

The District Attorney Posted: January 04, 2014 at 01:45 PM | 673 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: basketball, nba, off-topic

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   1. GGC don't think it can get longer than a novella Posted: January 04, 2014 at 01:52 PM (#4629937)
So, are the leadins to the NBA threads a good barometer of what offtopic digressions have occeured here?
   2. The District Attorney Posted: January 04, 2014 at 02:04 PM (#4629951)
Re: Tony Parker: I obviously don't approve of secret anti-Semitic gestures, but I do think that the existence of such in France shows the futility of attempting to ban people from saying dumb #### out loud, and the wisdom of the First Amendment.

Jason Collins to Miami makes decent sense, but how about Andrew Bynum to Miami? I'm almost positive that's a risk that the Heat don't feel like they need to take, but boy, would I love to see it.
   3. robinred Posted: January 04, 2014 at 02:19 PM (#4629969)
So, are the leadins to the NBA threads a good barometer of what offtopic digressions have occeured here?

People do indeed try. The first one, the original one that I put up, used "Pavement's discography and the Duke LaCrosse case."

The DA has upgraded our game, however, since he is using pix on his lead-ins as well.

--

Bynum to Miami certainly makes some sense if Bynum is dealt and then waived, as some observers think he will be. Miami would then be hoping that either Bynum or Oden would be around to help them out with Hibbert in May, which would seem to be a reasonable strategy.
   4. Bitter Mouse Posted: January 04, 2014 at 02:30 PM (#4629981)
I love the NBA lead ins. I always look forward to the 10-12 and finding out what the site is REALLY about. I think this is an indication of the lack of a life or something.
   5. tshipman Posted: January 04, 2014 at 02:46 PM (#4629993)
Bynum to Miami certainly makes some sense if Bynum is dealt and then waived, as some observers think he will be. Miami would then be hoping that either Bynum or Oden would be around to help them out with Hibbert in May, which would seem to be a reasonable strategy.


I don't know that Bynum to anywhere in the NBA makes sense.

He's not healthy, he has a horrible attitude, and his only remaining plus skill appears to be rebounding. He went from a .560 shooting percentage his last healthy year to a .420 one now.
   6. GGC don't think it can get longer than a novella Posted: January 04, 2014 at 03:21 PM (#4630018)
I always look forward to the 10-12 and finding out what the site is REALLY about.


FWIW, I'm not really one of the 10-12. I used to follow it more, but my wife turned me on to hockey and it sort of gets in the way basketball. Anyways, TDA is one of our better leadin guys here. More Bill James Mailbags, please.
   7. robinred Posted: January 04, 2014 at 05:19 PM (#4630100)
These alleged Anthony-for-Griffin discussions would be really short conversations if I ran the Clippers (And I am actually something of an Anthony apologist--Kobe has given me plenty of practice time).
   8. robinred Posted: January 04, 2014 at 05:23 PM (#4630103)
From old thread:

Rob Mahoney of SI.Com seems to think that Marshall's big game was a little more than just a blip:

http://nba.si.com/2014/01/04/kendall-marshall-career-bests-first-start-los-angeles-lakers-utah-jazz/

I don't know enough about Marshall to really have an opinion, but the game was against a weak team, and while Trey Burke is going to be a nice player, right now he is a very young rookie without amazing athletic ability who is still learning NBA D. So we will see. With the Lakers having no other PGs who are suiting up and being out of the race even for 8th, Marshall will, and should, certainly get a chance to prove Mahoney right.link
   9. PJ Martinez Posted: January 04, 2014 at 05:40 PM (#4630110)
From what I understand, a reporter got sources from each team (Knicks and Clippers) to acknowledge that they had each discussed *internally* the idea of trading for the other player -- no reported discussions *between* the teams that I've read about. And, as you would guess, the Clippers' internal discussions apparently led them to the (correct) conclusion that they weren't interested in such a deal.
   10. GregD Posted: January 04, 2014 at 05:47 PM (#4630115)
These alleged Anthony-for-Griffin discussions would be really short conversations if I ran the Clippers (And I am actually something of an Anthony apologist--Kobe has given me plenty of practice time).
Even more insane are the NY writers saying how bad this deal would be for the Knicks!
   11. NJ in DC (Now unemployed!) Posted: January 04, 2014 at 06:09 PM (#4630123)
One of the great lead-ins ever, bravo.
   12. NJ in DC (Now unemployed!) Posted: January 04, 2014 at 06:10 PM (#4630125)
Re: Marshall

I hope he does well. I thought he was overrated in college, but then I started following him on Twitter and ended up finding him to be one of the most enjoyable NBA personalities around so now I'm a fan.
   13. NJ in DC (Now unemployed!) Posted: January 04, 2014 at 06:13 PM (#4630126)
I hate Melo and can't see the sense in trading him for Griffin. Griffin is another guy who isn't good enough to be THE guy without getting lots of other things right. You have to either let Melo walk or find a way to get some picks for him IMO.
   14. dejarouehg Posted: January 04, 2014 at 06:41 PM (#4630148)
I hate Melo and can't see the sense in trading him for Griffin. Griffin is another guy who isn't good enough to be THE guy without getting lots of other things right. You have to either let Melo walk or find a way to get some picks for him IMO.


Neither player makes his teammates better.

Griffin would be fun to watch for a bit and then the novelty would wear off. He'd eventually get booed for his over-flopping, missed free throws and clearly limited offensive game.

Carmelo is everything I don't like about basketball (though there is no denying his innate talent to score) and seeing him and JR Smith together just reminds me of how much more enjoyable watching a team like the Spurs is. (Even if the Knicks pull off an upset win.)

Trading for draft picks is so risky. IT depends on the year and where the picks are. Some years, the #4 pick is gold. Some years, it's teflon. And anything after 6 or 7 is so often a bit of a crapshoot that it more closely resembles baseball.
   15. NJ in DC (Now unemployed!) Posted: January 04, 2014 at 06:47 PM (#4630154)
missed free throws

Not so much anymore!

Trading for draft picks is so risky. IT depends on the year and where the picks are. Some years, the #4 pick is gold. Some years, it's teflon. And anything after 6 or 7 is so often a bit of a crapshoot that it more closely resembles baseball.

I guess. I'd much rather that risk than the certainty of mediocrity that the team currently has. Giving ~$30 million a year to Melo locks up about half your cap. I'm not sure it's possible to build a good team with what's leftover.
   16. thok Posted: January 04, 2014 at 07:10 PM (#4630172)
Speaking of trading for draft picks, how will the Hawks look next year if Brooklyn continues to implode? I assume the Hawks would take one one and done small forwards (Parker or Wiggins) if they got to the top of the draft, but I'm not sure what Atlanta would do if Brooklyn only ends up with the 5th pick or so and I don't have a feel if any draft pick would be enough to close the gap between Atlanta and Indiana/Miami.
   17. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: January 04, 2014 at 08:18 PM (#4630217)
I guess. I'd much rather that risk than the certainty of mediocrity that the team currently has. Giving ~$30 million a year to Melo locks up about half your cap. I'm not sure it's possible to build a good team with what's leftover.
My brother and I have been having this argument ever since the Memphis/Gasol/Lakers and KG/Minny/Boston trades. Minnesota did it the "right way", trading for ten tons of picks, and then averaged less than 25 wins for the next five seasons. Evaluating tanking for picks as a strategy is completely results-driven, and when it fails it can do serious damage to a team's fan base. Don't knock mediocre; for teams like Charlotte, Detroit, Toronto, Boston, Philly, and Cleveland are all legit playoff contenders and that's a huge boost for their fan bases. Years of losing can be suffocating.
   18. jmurph Posted: January 04, 2014 at 08:35 PM (#4630229)
Re: Griffin-Carmelo

I agree that it won't happen, but disagree that it's lose-lose, as others seem to be suggesting. That's a no-brainer for the Knicks, I think. There is basically no scenario in which they attract a player as good or better than Griffin in the next several years.
   19. Steve Balboni's Personal Trainer Posted: January 04, 2014 at 09:30 PM (#4630262)
Re: Griffin-Carmelo

Griffin would be locked in for another five years or so to NY. Carmelo is walking as soon as he can. The Clippers won't do this. If they could also acquire the Knicks' pick in 2014, it might get interesting...but the Knicks don't even have their own pick this year. Man, they be messin' up!
   20. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: January 04, 2014 at 10:25 PM (#4630279)
The new Chris Paul-less Clippers are getting taken to the woodshed tonight. Wow. 58-25 before halftime.
   21. PJ Martinez Posted: January 04, 2014 at 11:37 PM (#4630303)
Kevin Love misses 4 free throws in a row (the last one on purpose, because it was Minnesota's only chance at that point), letting a potential win against OKC slip away.
   22. Russlan is fond of Dillon Gee Posted: January 04, 2014 at 11:48 PM (#4630306)
How good of a player is Kevin Love? He's putting up some crazy numbers but Minnesota is still less than .500. Can you really be one of the best players in the league when your team can't make the playoffs? I know that he doesn't have a great supporting cast but neither does Dirk in Dallas and they are few games up Minnesota for the last playoff spot.

Where do you guys think he ranks among the best players in the league?
   23. T.J. Posted: January 05, 2014 at 12:10 AM (#4630313)
Re: Marshall

I hope he does well. I thought he was overrated in college...

Full disclosure: I'm a UNC grad and fan, so I'm pretty familiar with his college game. I didn't watch the game last night. However, reading that article and looking at the accompanying video, he mostly looks like he did at UNC. At UNC, he had the most amazing vision and ability to pass ahead of any PG I've ever seen (I'm not a huge NBA fan, so I'm not intimately familiar with Jason Kidd's prime). On the other hand, he was slower than Christmas: useless defensively and only rarely able to break his man down with the ball. When he turned pro, I had my doubts at his ability to compete in the NBA; however, given where he expected to be drafted (and ultimately was), I didn't blame him for going for the money. I didn't think his game could improve much. Maybe he's adjusted to the speed and athleticism of the NBA, but as everyone has pointed out, Utah is a bad defensive team. I also don't see how he can play defense effectively in the NBA long-term.

EDIT: He was also relatively lightly regarded as a high school prospect: http://sports.yahoo.com/footballrecruiting/basketball/recruiting/player-Kendall-Marshall-59605
   24. If on a winter's night a baserunner Posted: January 05, 2014 at 01:18 AM (#4630344)
Don't knock mediocre; for teams like Charlotte, Detroit, Toronto, Boston, Philly, and Cleveland are all legit playoff contenders and that's a huge boost for their fan bases. Years of losing can be suffocating.


With the caveat that this is coming from the very homer depths of my homer heart, one of these things is not like the others. Two years ago, Boston was one win away from making the finals. This is the first year without their old core; the calls to get a good draft pick are much, much louder than those to make the playoffs for this fan base.
   25. theboyqueen Posted: January 05, 2014 at 01:54 AM (#4630358)
Kevin Love just does not have the kind of game that is going to create wins by itself. Rubio's horrific shooting really ruins their offense.

Give Kevin Love David Lee's minutes in Golden State and holy hell would that be a team for the ages.
   26. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: January 05, 2014 at 02:02 AM (#4630360)
Simmons suggested that the best trade destination for Melo is Phoenix, a hypothetical I find horrifying.
   27. starksy Posted: January 05, 2014 at 02:05 AM (#4630362)
Full disclosure: I'm a UNC grad and fan, so I'm pretty familiar with his college game. I didn't watch the game last night. However, reading that article and looking at the accompanying video, he mostly looks like he did at UNC. At UNC, he had the most amazing vision and ability to pass ahead of any PG I've ever seen (I'm not a huge NBA fan, so I'm not intimately familiar with Jason Kidd's prime). On the other hand, he was slower than Christmas: useless defensively and only rarely able to break his man down with the ball. When he turned pro, I had my doubts at his ability to compete in the NBA; however, given where he expected to be drafted (and ultimately was), I didn't blame him for going for the money. I didn't think his game could improve much. Maybe he's adjusted to the speed and athleticism of the NBA, but as everyone has pointed out, Utah is a bad defensive team. I also don't see how he can play defense effectively in the NBA long-term.


My sister is a huge UNC fan and I watched many of their games with her. +1 on everything listed above and adding that he also can't/couldn't be expected to hit any shot consistently; great vision/passing, average to sub-par in about everything else (mostly sub-par).
   28. Manny Coon Posted: January 05, 2014 at 02:38 AM (#4630373)
Griffin would be fun to watch for a bit and then the novelty would wear off. He'd eventually get booed for his over-flopping, missed free throws and clearly limited offensive game.


Clearly limited compared to who? Durant and Lebron? This sounds like criticism of Griffin from 3 years ago. Griffin can handle the ball, pass and face up in addition to dunking, transition and simple post stuff he's more known for. Hell he's even making over 70% at the line this year and rained down jumpers against the Horcats a few days ago. The novelty hasn't worn off for anyone who watches the Clippers, even if he's imperfect.

Maybe he's not good enough to be the best player on a championship team, but he's clearly better than Melo and the Knicks would be crazy to not make the trade if the Clippers lost their mind and offered it. Even if he didn't fit with Knicks, they would simply be trading for a much more valuable asset, they could certainly get a lot more in a trade for Griffin than they would for Melo, given his age, size, contract and Melo's reputation of being difficult.
   29. tshipman Posted: January 05, 2014 at 03:10 AM (#4630375)
Maybe he's not good enough to be the best player on a championship team, but he's clearly better than Melo and the Knicks would be crazy to not make the trade if the Clippers lost their mind and offered it. Even if he didn't fit with Knicks, they would simply be trading for a much more valuable asset, they could certainly get a lot more in a trade for Griffin than they would for Melo, given his age, size, contract and Melo's reputation of being difficult.


Yeah, this exactly. Griffin might be limited as a player, but he plays the same position as Melo. He is a better passer, better rebounder, and a higher percentage scorer. He's probably also a better defender.

Like, he's not LeBron, but I'm not exactly sure what would make this a decision that takes longer than 5 seconds.
   30. robinred Posted: January 05, 2014 at 04:21 AM (#4630385)
Ramona Shelburne
Follow
Lakers vehemently deny Pau trade is done. Vehemently deny. Aren't budging from stance that they want asset for Gasol


@stephenasmith Pau/Bynum done per league source. Will happen Sunday. Lakers not getting a first rounder. Likely getting a 2nd.


Marc Stein
Follow
Cavs would love to get deal done Sunday. But NOT there yet. Lakers still looking for extra asset + Pau-for-Bynum alone doesn't work cap-wise
   31. robinred Posted: January 05, 2014 at 04:47 AM (#4630386)
How good of a player is Kevin Love?


Love is one of the best 10 players in the league, and arguably one of the top 4. I see Minnesota play some on League Pass, and my thoughts on Love are:

1. PER and WS/WARP have him as being about as good as anyone, but I think those numbers overrate him a little. He is an awesome rebounder and offensive player, but is just OK on defense and is not a game-changing defender or rim protector.
2. But the biggest "problem" with Love is that Minnesota has missed on too many high lottery picks since they traded Mayo to get him. They took Derrick Williams at 2, Wesley Johnson at 4, and Jonny Flynn at 5. Rubio was not a miss, but he has not as yet developed into the real Second Gun Minnesota needs him to be. Plus, they drafted Trey Burke and Ty Lawson, but traded both of them. Burke went for Shabazz Mohammad, whom they just sent to the DLeague, and Gorgui Dieng, and Lawson was traded for a pick that became Luke Babbitt, who was then traded for Martell Webster. I am not saying this to bag on Minnesota; unless a guy is some otherworldly superspecimen like James or Robinson, drafting is hard, and all teams make mistakes. But it is tough when you miss at 2, 4, and 5 in a short period. Cleveland is having the same problem--that is why they had to gamble on Bynum and are now trying to get Pau.
3. As to the Dallas comparison, Minnesota has a higher ORTG, DRTG, and a slightly better PYTH than Dallas does, but the Wolves have had trouble in close games, as they did again tonight. That may not even out this year, but I don't really think that Dallas and Phoenix are better than Minnesota is.

   32. clowns to the left of me; STEAGLES to the right Posted: January 05, 2014 at 05:13 AM (#4630387)
Yeah, this exactly. Griffin might be limited as a player, but he plays the same position as Melo. He is a better passer, better rebounder, and a higher percentage scorer. He's probably also a better defender.

Like, he's not LeBron, but I'm not exactly sure what would make this a decision that takes longer than 5 seconds.
i strongly disagree with most of the characterization of melo in this thread.

maybe i just don't watch him enough, but this is a guy who is shooting 45/38/86 with a usage% of 31 on a team that is falling apart around him.


melo's a better 3P shooter that griffin (and iirc, he's actually a really, really good spot-up shooter when he gets the opportunity), he's a more capable ballhandler, he's better at creating his own shot, and if you put him alongside chris paul, i'm pretty certain he'd shoot for a higher percentage, too.

griffin is bigger, but he's not tougher, and he's not a good defender. he's also overrated as a rebounder (he had 12 per game as a rookie, but he's under 10 per game in the 3 years since), while melo seems to be somewhat underrated.

and if we're being honest, i call bullshit on melo being a worse passer than griffin, too. we are, what, a year removed from him having the highest eFG% on shots taken after he passes the ball (granted, most of those passes were to tyson chandler and steve novak during their career years, but still...).


griffin is younger, but it's not like melo is 39 years old; he hasn't even turned 30.
which isn't to say that melo makes the clippers any more of a contender than they are now, but i'm pretty certain they wouldn't be any less of one.
   33. NJ in DC (Now unemployed!) Posted: January 05, 2014 at 08:02 AM (#4630395)
As I've made clear many times on this thread over the years...I absolutely hate Carmelo Anthony the basketball player and I kind of hate Carmelo Anthony the human being. That said...the idea that Blake Griffin is better than him is laughable to me. Blake is more athletic and has a big advantage in dunking and a rebounding advantage. Other than that I think Melo is his superior in all facets of the game. The other thing to consider is context. There is, IMO, no way Blake would be as effective as Melo has been in the Knicks' current dumpster fire of a situation, which is what we have to remember Blake would be coming into. Even before Blake had CP3 he had good/not injured Eric Gordon. It's tough going from that to Ray Felton, Beno Udrih and Tour'e Murry.

Don't look now but Durant has passed LeBron in PER and WS/48 and Love isn't so far behind. With Paul out for the next month and a half, it looks like one of the Kevins is going to put an end to LeBron's PER, WS, and MVP streaks.
   34. RollingWave Posted: January 05, 2014 at 09:52 AM (#4630404)
RE: Kevin Love , I think he's basically similar to James Harden, really really good player with some obvious flaws, not that much unlike Melo, but it is relatively easier to put a winning team around those 2 guys than Melo so to speak, the difference is that Houston has been able to put together a pretty darn good cast of players while the Wolf's bench are a lot more of a disaster (granted, part of that is injury, but it's not like Houston hasn't had injury of their own . including a boatload of games where no one that played meaningful minutes was over 6'9.)

The Wolf's starting lineup has been really good actually and their luck is well short of expected (they're like 1-9 in 50/50 1 possession games ) . Love does have some issue but a significant part of it is that Kahn left enough of a mess that it's hard to clear all the way out that quickly.

As for Rubio, I actually think he's fine, it's Barea if anything that has been the bigger problem.
   35. King Mekong Posted: January 05, 2014 at 10:24 AM (#4630408)
Nobody bends it like Duncan. (Gif from last nights Spurs/Clips)
   36. EddieA Posted: January 05, 2014 at 12:48 PM (#4630469)
This Duncan pass from earlier this season was so accurate that it looked like the pass was a waste, he should shoot and get the extra point.
   37. NJ in DC (Now unemployed!) Posted: January 05, 2014 at 01:57 PM (#4630520)
Just because there's no end to the insanity coming out of the Garden:
RT @Al_Iannazzone On the end of the Houston game, Woodson said J.R. Smith "went blank," but unsolicited said "Did Beno have to throw him the ball?"

RT @FisolaNYDN Woodson said J.R. was "wide open. The bottom line is you look at his shot but did Beno have to throw him the ball? You gotta look at that"

   38. PJ Martinez Posted: January 05, 2014 at 02:15 PM (#4630533)
If you don't think Udrih should pass Smith the ball, maybe don't have Smith on the floor?

I really think they should fire Woodson. (Edit: Not just for this, obviously.)
   39. NJ in DC (Now unemployed!) Posted: January 05, 2014 at 02:16 PM (#4630535)
If you don't think Udrih should pass Smith the ball, maybe don't have Smith on the floor?

You would think. But...hey, I guess that's why Woodson gets paid the big bucks. Never experienced a worse coaching performance in any sport ever.
   40. If on a winter's night a baserunner Posted: January 05, 2014 at 02:22 PM (#4630543)
I'm very, very curious where Melo is going when he leaves the Knicks (assuming he is leaving the Knicks, which seems like a safe assumption at this point. I don't see how they're getting better.). He's both the best, highest-profile candidate to pull a Monta Ellis AND the best candidate to waste his whole career for non-basketball reasons.
   41. Russlan is fond of Dillon Gee Posted: January 05, 2014 at 02:44 PM (#4630556)
The Wolves are not bereft of talent and if Love were really one of the top-5 talents in the game, he'd be able to get them to the playoffs. The Wolves are only 7-12 in their conference and have played the fewest games intra-conference games.

I think Love is a very good player but I don't think you can put him in the truly elite if he can't get the Wolves to the playoffs.
   42. dejarouehg Posted: January 05, 2014 at 03:05 PM (#4630570)
I absolutely hate Carmelo Anthony the basketball player and I kind of hate Carmelo Anthony the human being. That said...the idea that Blake Griffin is better than him is laughable to me. Blake is more athletic and has a big advantage in dunking and a rebounding advantage. Other than that I think Melo is his superior in all facets of the game. The other thing to consider is context. There is, IMO, no way Blake would be as effective as Melo has been in the Knicks' current dumpster fire of a situation, which is what we have to remember Blake would be coming into. Even before Blake had CP3 he had good/not injured Eric Gordon. It's tough going from that to Ray Felton, Beno Udrih and Tour'e Murry.


Well said!!!! I'd still be in favor of the trade b/c if I'm going to watch Rome burn, at least let it be entertaining. On top of everything else, Anthony's brand of ball is just plain dull!

Don't look now but Durant has passed LeBron in PER and WS/48 and Love isn't so far behind. With Paul out for the next month and a half, it looks like one of the Kevins is going to put an end to LeBron's PER, WS, and MVP streaks.


I have no idea what the PER or any of the other acronyms mean but any suggestion that anyone is better than or equal to LeBron is just wrong.

LeBron is on his own level and it's a big step before you get to Durant, who has a little company. As good a player as Love is he does not belong in the conversation with LBJ, KD, CP3, PG or Westbrook.
   43. T.J. Posted: January 05, 2014 at 03:12 PM (#4630577)
he also can't/couldn't be expected to hit any shot consistently
Absolutely. Totally forgot to address his shot, but absolutely.
   44. theboyqueen Posted: January 05, 2014 at 03:40 PM (#4630611)
I can't see any way that a Carmelo for Griffin trade makes the Knicks better or the Clippers worse. With Chris Paul and Doc Rivers, that is literally a perfect situation for him. Blake going to the Knicks has Amare 2.0 written all over it. The Knicks current run of incompetent management, starting at the top, is almost mindblowing.

Carmelo has to be one of the most underrated players in the league, both by media types and by stats people oddly enough. His offensive skillset is well-nigh unstoppable but he has never been on a pro team that harnessed his strengths.

I also don't agree at all that Carmelo and Blake play the same position, other than what they both do falls under the vague heading of power forward. They are completely different players.
   45. robinred Posted: January 05, 2014 at 03:50 PM (#4630626)
(34)

Sure, Rubio is "fine", but he's not really that good, as it is hard to be really good with an EFG of .387, and I think Minnesota needs him to be good. As to Barea, his next BDay will be his 30th, in six months, and while that may not be the reason for his dropoff, that looked like one of those deals that might not go well the last year or two when they gave it to him.

As to the Harden/Love comp, the point is that Harden has Howard now, and vice versa. One of the traditional formulas for anchoring a team--pairing an elite big with an elite wing or point--still works, and will probably still work in 2044. Sure, if you get LeBron James or Michael Jordan, that changes things for you, but obviously most teams don't get those guys.

As to Anthony and Griffin, I think Griffin is a little better player, but that is not really why I wouldn't consider it if I were the Clippers. Griffin is 25; Anthony is almost 30. Paul and Griffin work very well together. The Clippers' problems, such as they are, are:

1. Their bench is not as good as last year.
2. They have not gotten what they need out of Dudley and Barnes. And they miss Redick.

Now of course, they just have to tread water without Paul, but I think they will.
   46. NJ in DC (Now unemployed!) Posted: January 05, 2014 at 04:14 PM (#4630650)
Carmelo has to be one of the most underrated players in the league, both by media types and by stats people oddly enough. His offensive skillset is well-nigh unstoppable but he has never been on a pro team that harnessed his strengths.

Well, that's partially his fault. He has all of these offensive tools but because he is lazy/dumb/selfish he chooses to play to his weaknesses. He's a really good passer who is often unwilling to move the ball. He's (IIRC) an elite spot up shooter he was so angry at D'antoni for trying to get him more spot up opportunities during Linsanity that he purposely broke plays to sabotage the offense. Then there are the fitness/conditioning/laziness issues that affect him on the defensive end and in terms of getting easy transition points. He's 11 years into his career, if through 11 years 2 teams 4(?) head coaches and countless systems implemented by those coaches you're pretty much the same guy you've always been...then that's probably who you are.
   47. Publius Publicola Posted: January 05, 2014 at 04:41 PM (#4630672)
His offensive skillset is well-nigh unstoppable but he has never been on a pro team that harnessed his strengths.


His offensive skillset is limited to scoring. He's a poor passer (which is unbelievable to me since he looked like a really good one in college), and is slow. And his scoring is limited to squaring up and taking long shots or posting. There is generally not much offensive movement when he is in the game because his teammates understand the limitations of his game. His sh%'s are OK but nothing to write home about, certainly not in "unstoppable" range.

If anything, 'Melo is perhaps one of the most overrated players in the league, and in general the teams he's played on haven't done much damage.
   48. Tom Cervo, backup catcher Posted: January 05, 2014 at 04:42 PM (#4630675)
The other thing to consider is context. There is, IMO, no way Blake would be as effective as Melo has been in the Knicks' current dumpster fire of a situation, which is what we have to remember Blake would be coming into. Even before Blake had CP3 he had good/not injured Eric Gordon. It's tough going from that to Ray Felton, Beno Udrih and Tour'e Murry.


But you're not just getting Griffin for the remainder of the season. You get at least four more years of his prime, which makes NY a legitimate destination for future star FAs. Plus, Woodson would be forced to give Bargani less PT since Griffin is a 4, which would likely make up for any decline going from Melo to Griffin (and which I'm still skeptical about).
   49. Publius Publicola Posted: January 05, 2014 at 04:46 PM (#4630683)
I have no idea what the PER or any of the other acronyms mean but any suggestion that anyone is better than or equal to LeBron is just wrong.


LeBron has been playing hurt and his performances have revealed that. When healthy, I agree he's better.
   50. Tom Cervo, backup catcher Posted: January 05, 2014 at 05:15 PM (#4630721)
LeBron has been playing hurt and his performances have revealed that. When healthy, I agree he's better.


Does anyone have the link from the NBA subreddit showing that Lebron hasn't been an elite defender this year? IIRC, Durant has been as good defensively, and Paul George much better than either. It would certainly support the idea that Lebron has been taking it easy on defense due to nagging injuries.

EDIT: Here it is.
   51. puck Posted: January 05, 2014 at 05:29 PM (#4630730)
I noticed LeBron was shooting .637 from 2pt range. That's...pretty amazing.
   52. NJ in DC (Now unemployed!) Posted: January 05, 2014 at 05:36 PM (#4630735)
[50] Interesting link. Not sure what to make of the LeBron-KD-George numbers without more context/better understanding of what it all means though (a) I do think Durant is an underrated defender as evidenced by the fact that his teams are good defensively, he's usually got good block and steal numbers, he looks like he's trying when I watch and he has a ridiculous wingspan (b) I do think LeBron coasts at times and any talk of him as DPOY (as a value award at least) doesn't make sense at this point (c) If I needed to get one stop I would probably go with LeBron. The Melo numbers are funny because they scream "this guy is lazy" IMO. He's fine in Isolation/Post Up situations where he doesn't have to move much, but get him in motion and disaster strikes.

EDIT: The other tough thing to cipher out with these guys is not just who they're guarding in terms of their pecking order for stopping opposing team #1 guys on their respective teams, but also what position are they guarding. I could be wrong, but it seems to me that different positions will have different average PPP,
   53. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: January 05, 2014 at 06:40 PM (#4630791)
Suns sign Leandro Barbosa to a 10-day contract. He'll join the team in time for Tuesday's game in Chicago. (Good memories for LB there.)
   54. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: January 05, 2014 at 07:25 PM (#4630839)
rumor! bayless to boston, c. lee to memphis.
boston gets an expiring and saves some money. memphis gets a needed upgrade on the wing.
   55. PJ Martinez Posted: January 05, 2014 at 07:26 PM (#4630844)
If Boston's not sending much else, seems like a great move for them, purely for financial reasons.

Celtics never seemed to get the most out of Lee, for whatever reason. He's shooting really well this year, in fairly limited minutes.
   56. Tom Cervo, backup catcher Posted: January 05, 2014 at 07:29 PM (#4630849)
[50] Interesting link. Not sure what to make of the LeBron-KD-George numbers without more context/better understanding of what it all means though (a) I do think Durant is an underrated defender as evidenced by the fact that his teams are good defensively, he's usually got good block and steal numbers, he looks like he's trying when I watch and he has a ridiculous wingspan (b) I do think LeBron coasts at times and any talk of him as DPOY (as a value award at least) doesn't make sense at this point (c) If I needed to get one stop I would probably go with LeBron. The Melo numbers are funny because they scream "this guy is lazy" IMO. He's fine in Isolation/Post Up situations where he doesn't have to move much, but get him in motion and disaster strikes.

EDIT: The other tough thing to cipher out with these guys is not just who they're guarding in terms of their pecking order for stopping opposing team #1 guys on their respective teams, but also what position are they guarding. I could be wrong, but it seems to me that different positions will have different average PPP,


Yeah, and maybe I'm just not reading it, but I don't hear anymore "Durant is soft" crap.

Another thing to consider is that George has Hibbert protecting the rim.
   57. Darkness and the howling fantods Posted: January 05, 2014 at 07:30 PM (#4630850)
Oops. Wrong thread.
   58. robinred Posted: January 05, 2014 at 07:45 PM (#4630872)
Splitter will be out a month or so with a shoulder injury; Irving and Bledsoe are out as well, although supposedly not for all that long.
   59. villainx Posted: January 06, 2014 at 01:53 AM (#4631129)
Giving ~$30 million a year to Melo locks up about half your cap. I'm not sure it's possible to build a good team with what's leftover.

The Knicks roster is awful. It's not that they can't build a good team around Melo, but there's unwillingness or lack of interest to do so. Signing JR Smith is the problem. Or as bad as Melo is, watching JR Smith is what makes the Knicks unbearable.
   60. theboyqueen Posted: January 06, 2014 at 02:20 AM (#4631134)
This is a bit off topic, but is there anything at all defensible about James Dolan, other than he keeps a few decent musicians employed (how these guys manage to stifle their laughter when he starts singing I will never understand).
   61. theboyqueen Posted: January 06, 2014 at 02:30 AM (#4631135)
One thing I learned from his Wikipedia page -- he was a communications major at SUNY-New Paltz. Almost everything in that page is a compelling argument against capitalism.
   62. RollingWave Posted: January 06, 2014 at 07:45 AM (#4631150)
Russlan : Rubio's defense is very very good, where as Barea is an attack guard that's shooting barely better than Rubio. that's a major problem.

Fun hypothetical then, if you swap Harden and Love, which team gets better ? (assuming similar health.)
   63. NJ in DC (Now unemployed!) Posted: January 06, 2014 at 08:45 AM (#4631157)
[62] Rockets definitely get better. Love to space the floor for Howard and between the two no other team should get a rebound ever. Lin fills most of the Harden role.
   64. Fancy Pants Handles lap changes with class Posted: January 06, 2014 at 09:31 AM (#4631175)
This is a bit off topic, but is there anything at all defensible about James Dolan, other than he keeps a few decent musicians employed (how these guys manage to stifle their laughter when he starts singing I will never understand).

I don't know. He is a lot less awful than I would expect from something that could be described as "billionaire hires band so he can be lead singer". Not great or anything, and not something I would voluntarily listen to, But better than 90+% of karaoke singers, which is where I would expect him to land.
   65. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 06, 2014 at 12:23 PM (#4631299)
Don't knock mediocre; for teams like Charlotte, Detroit, Toronto, Boston, Philly, and Cleveland are all legit playoff contenders and that's a huge boost for their fan bases. Years of losing can be suffocating.


On the flip side: Milwaukee. Years of mediocrity can be pretty suffocating too.

The Wolves are not bereft of talent and if Love were really one of the top-5 talents in the game, he'd be able to get them to the playoffs. The Wolves are only 7-12 in their conference and have played the fewest games intra-conference games.

I think Love is a very good player but I don't think you can put him in the truly elite if he can't get the Wolves to the playoffs.


Bill Simmons had some discussion like this - who is the best player who didn't get his team in the playoffs? I think Nate Archibald was discussed a lot. He led the league in scoring in 72-73 and the Kings finished 36-46. He made the playoffs just once in KC, when he was in his prime.
   66. Davo Dozier Posted: January 06, 2014 at 12:31 PM (#4631306)
I'm not as big a basketball fan as you guys, but, generally speaking, you can be the best player in the league but with no supporting cast, your team will never be much over .500, right? I can remember watching those joke Laker teams when Kobe Bryant shot 40 times a game, or all those Garnett-led Timberwolf teams that missed the playoffs.
   67. I am going to be Frank Posted: January 06, 2014 at 12:36 PM (#4631314)
Lebron and prime Shaq could do it.
   68. dejarouehg Posted: January 06, 2014 at 01:01 PM (#4631336)
Lin fills most of the Harden role.


You're not really serious, are you? Harden is a monster.

Lin is a nice player and has dealt with a lot. He is certainly not as bad as all the Lin-haters but is far from an All-Star.

He is in the lower third of point guards and, athletically speaking, very exposed.
   69. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 06, 2014 at 01:03 PM (#4631338)
I'm not as big a basketball fan as you guys, but, generally speaking, you can be the best player in the league but with no supporting cast, your team will never be much over .500, right? I can remember watching those joke Laker teams when Kobe Bryant shot 40 times a game, or all those Garnett-led Timberwolf teams that missed the playoffs.


Jordan led the league in total points his rookie year and the Bulls finished 38-44. He won the scoring title his third sason and they were 40-42. They didn't have a winning record til his fourth season (he was hurt much of the second season).
   70. Manny Coon Posted: January 06, 2014 at 01:37 PM (#4631372)
David Robinson had a pretty impressive record as far as carrying weak teammates. Jumping from 21 to 56 wins his rookie year, then plunged from 59 to 20 the year he got hurt and back to 56 the year after that.
   71. GregD Posted: January 06, 2014 at 01:53 PM (#4631380)
   72. andrewberg Posted: January 06, 2014 at 02:07 PM (#4631394)
To chip in on the Love discussion...

2. But the biggest "problem" with Love is that Minnesota has missed on too many high lottery picks since they traded Mayo to get him. They took Derrick Williams at 2, Wesley Johnson at 4, and Jonny Flynn at 5. Rubio was not a miss, but he has not as yet developed into the real Second Gun Minnesota needs him to be. Plus, they drafted Trey Burke and Ty Lawson, but traded both of them. Burke went for Shabazz Mohammad, whom they just sent to the DLeague, and Gorgui Dieng, and Lawson was traded for a pick that became Luke Babbitt, who was then traded for Martell Webster.


This is well said. They have had to spend heavily to get even a decent supporting cast, and did a good job to acquire Martin and keep Pek. But the failure to draft well has left them with an exceeding weak bench (5 TOTAL points in 2 of the last 3 games). They have struggled late in games due to fatigue, Rubio's poor shooting (which allows defenses to cave in, a real issue), and some bad luck/tough scheduling. I still think they're a 45 win team. Whether or not that makes the playoffs, we will see. A lot goes into being a dominant team. The fact that the Wolves are merely good is not a knock on Love.
   73. My name is Votto, and I love to get blotto Posted: January 06, 2014 at 02:12 PM (#4631397)
Lebron and prime Shaq could do it.


Which Shaq was that? He had pretty good teammates his whole career. I think it is a (minor)ding on Love, although the Western Conference is a beast.
   74. dejarouehg Posted: January 06, 2014 at 02:19 PM (#4631403)
LeBron took a team with minimal talent to the Finals and he was probably 26 +/- at the time.

Remarkable!

(I have a recollection that the 74 Warriors were Rick Barry and not much else; although given Barry's limited game it's hard to imagine there wasn't some other talent on that team.)
   75. smileyy Posted: January 06, 2014 at 02:24 PM (#4631409)
We've talked about it a bit before here over the years, but even being conservative, you can argue that an All-Time Great player is able to make his team 30 or more wins better than they would be without him. Granted, those are probably wins 15->45 or so, which are some of the easier ones, but that still an amazing impact on a team.
   76. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 06, 2014 at 02:26 PM (#4631412)
Tracy McGrady was a fantastic player with an awful supporting cast that had trouble being much more than a .500 team. Same with Vince Carter in Toronto.

Dominique Wilkins's teams had a decent peak, but most of his prime they were a .500 team.
   77. Manny Coon Posted: January 06, 2014 at 02:31 PM (#4631417)
(I have a recollection that the 74 Warriors were Rick Barry and not much else; although given Barry's limited game it's hard to imagine there wasn't some other talent on that team.)


Just looking at bb-ref the team was deep. 7 players with PER over 15, 9 over 14, 12 over 12. There was pretty strong talent in the ABA by then, so you could probably be pretty deep in the 70's NBA without having particularly good players.
   78. dejarouehg Posted: January 06, 2014 at 02:40 PM (#4631426)
Dominique, whom I now appreciate much more than when he was active, had decent talent on his teams. They just weren't good enough. (The current Knicks would kill for that level of talent.)

There are several factors that go into elevating your team. The first is obviously the competition in your division. If you're in the East now, the likelihood you can have a greater overall impact on a team's W/L performance.

Another is what kind of point guard are you playing with. There is nothing that helps a team like an efficient, talented point guard.

Finally, there is the issue of how good the player we are talking about is. To truly carry a garbage team on your back to the point of having an extraordinary impact, you really need to be unique. Robinson at 7'2" was. LeBron may be the greatest (apologies to Wilt) athlete ever to play the game. Kareem in Milwaukee. (Oscar was winding down thought they still had some talent.) Jordan clearly elevated his team significantly, but Pippen emerging certainly was an enormous factor.

Bernard King had a(n) (lesser) effect on the early 80's Knicks.

Rck Barry on Golden State.


   79. dejarouehg Posted: January 06, 2014 at 02:45 PM (#4631431)
Just looking at bb-ref the team was deep. 7 players with PER over 15, 9 over 14, 12 over 12. There was pretty strong talent in the ABA by then, so you could probably be pretty deep in the 70's NBA without having particularly good players.


I have no idea what PER is and after looking at the roster, I could care less. Holy Sh** was that team bereft of talent!! Wilkes was just OK then; not close to the stud he became on the Lakers. Butch Beard on his best day was a just below average point guard. CLifford Ray was a decent center but not in the same hemisphere as the first tier. That's a team where the sum was exponentially greater than it's parts. OR, in other words, the polar opposite of the what the Brooklyn Nets were hoped to behave been this year, compared to some expectations.
   80. smileyy Posted: January 06, 2014 at 02:53 PM (#4631441)
I have no idea what PER is


Player Efficiency Rating, by John Hollinger

It has its flaws, but the notion is that a player around 15 PER is a league-average player.
   81. andrewberg Posted: January 06, 2014 at 02:56 PM (#4631447)
Holy Sh** was that team bereft of talent!!


That team won 48 games. The Wolves this year have the point differential of a 52 win team over a full season. You can't deify Barry for leading a 48 win team with a so-so supporting cast and crucify Love for the same thing if the team is arguably better.
   82. dejarouehg Posted: January 06, 2014 at 03:01 PM (#4631453)
I would never trash Love. After LBJ, PG, KD and RW, (and maybe CP3?) I think he is the best player in the league.

This guy is extraordinary; no qualifications whatsoever.
   83. My name is Votto, and I love to get blotto Posted: January 06, 2014 at 03:19 PM (#4631480)
Dominique Wilkins's teams had a decent peak, but most of his prime they were a .500 team.


A big 'what if' is if Atlanta had kept Dominique rather than trading him for Danny Manning in '94. That was probably their best shot at a Finals (#1 seed in the East). Checking the game logs, Manning played pretty well in Atlanta's series loss to the Pacers. But Dominique was such a dynamic player, I think they would have been a tougher out by keeping him.
   84. Jimmy P Posted: January 06, 2014 at 03:28 PM (#4631486)
I think Love is a very good player but I don't think you can put him in the truly elite if he can't get the Wolves to the playoffs.


I agree with this. Guy's putting up numbers, but he's gotta get some wins. Look at Durant, he's got a skeleton crew out there now. Yet, his team still wins. His coach even handicaps him by playing Perk and Thabo. Love needs to get his team into the playoffs. The no-talent excuse is just not a good one in Minnesota anymore. Pek, Rubio, Kevin Martin, Barea. This isn't a championship team, but it is a team that's playoff caliber. If he's this good, there's no reason they should be behind Phoenix or probably Dallas at this point.

Garnett had the Wolves in the playoffs his 2nd year.
   85. NJ in DC (Now unemployed!) Posted: January 06, 2014 at 03:28 PM (#4631487)
(and maybe CP3?)

Huh?
   86. NJ in DC (Now unemployed!) Posted: January 06, 2014 at 03:34 PM (#4631494)
You're not really serious, are you? Harden is a monster.

Lin is a nice player and has dealt with a lot. He is certainly not as bad as all the Lin-haters but is far from an All-Star.

He is in the lower third of point guards and, athletically speaking, very exposed.


I'm not saying he is as good as Harden, just that if there were no Harden it would better allow him to play to his strengths and that would help HOU somewhat in making up for the loss of Harden. Harden is a monster at getting to the FT line and arguably the best SG today, but (a) SG sucks right now and (b) there are a lot of questions about his defense and how that affects his value yet to be answered. I also have no idea what Lin's ranking at the deepest position in the league has to do with any of this. Same thing with his alleged athletic limitations. Lin has historically done well in the stat categories that are used as markers for athleticism, BLK STL REB, is subjectively one of the fastest guys end to end in the league, and objectively one of the best guys in the league driving to the basket and yet we always have to hear about his lack of athleticism. Weird.
   87. NJ in DC (Now unemployed!) Posted: January 06, 2014 at 03:36 PM (#4631496)
I agree with this. Guy's putting up numbers, but he's gotta get some wins. Look at Durant, he's got a skeleton crew out there now. Yet, his team still wins. His coach even handicaps him by playing Perk and Thabo. Love needs to get his team into the playoffs. The no-talent excuse is just not a good one in Minnesota anymore. Pek, Rubio, Kevin Martin, Barea. This isn't a championship team, but it is a team that's playoff caliber. If he's this good, there's no reason they should be behind Phoenix or probably Dallas at this point.

This argument is very strange to me in the context of this website. Look at MIN's differential. I think there are questions about Love, but at the same time people here keep talking about MIN as though they've been bad this year and I don't see the evidence for that.
   88. The Buddy Biancalana Hit Counter Posted: January 06, 2014 at 03:41 PM (#4631500)
A big 'what if' is if Atlanta had kept Dominique rather than trading him for Danny Manning in '94. That was probably their best shot at a Finals (#1 seed in the East). Checking the game logs, Manning played pretty well in Atlanta's series loss to the Pacers. But Dominique was such a dynamic player, I think they would have been a tougher out by keeping him.

Manning played well but his presence on the block really limited what Kevin Willis could contribute offensively. It was a bold and terrible trade.
   89. dejarouehg Posted: January 06, 2014 at 03:46 PM (#4631505)
The no-talent excuse is just not a good one in Minnesota anymore. Pek, Rubio, Kevin Martin, Barea. This isn't a championship team, but it is a team that's playoff caliber.


Hard to argue against this. They've had no real injuries to deal with, i.e., the starting line-up has been the same virtually every game, which is astonishing. Not sure what the problem is but they clearly should be better, although Rubio, Barea and Brewer are fairly average.
   90. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: January 06, 2014 at 03:49 PM (#4631508)
Barea is a bad basketball player (worse than Thabo, for example) and Minnesota has been a four man team this year (with apologies to Brewer). OKC, meanwhile, also has (besides Russ) Ibaka, Collison, Jackson and Lamb, Adams ...

Love, at this early juncture, has an argument for MVP.

---

Part of the disconnect is: should we treat the T-Wolves like a 16-17 team or a team with a relatively strong point differential (8th in the NBA in SRS)? The answer, here, I think, is both.
   91. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: January 06, 2014 at 03:59 PM (#4631520)
Win Shares: Kevin Durant-OKC (8.2), Chris Paul-LAC (7.0), LeBron James-MIA (6.9), Kevin Love-MIN (6.6), Paul George-IND (6.1)
   92. robinred Posted: January 06, 2014 at 05:14 PM (#4631631)
Part of the disconnect is: should we treat the T-Wolves like a 16-17 team or a team with a relatively strong point differential (8th in the NBA in SRS)? The answer, here, I think, is both.


--

More the latter than the former at this point, IMO. The season is less than half over. The obvious caveat is that if there are specific things that Love is doing, or not doing, or can't do, that are hurting Minnesota in close games. If this keeps up and the Wolves miss their PYTH by 8-9 games, go 38-44, and finish 11th, then, yeah, I think you take a look at it.

But even then, as I have said throughout this thread, I am older than most guys here (Simmons' age) and have been watching pro ball a long time. In 1988 I heard that Michael Jordan wouldn't win because scoring champs don't win titles. In 1999 I heard that Shaq wouldn't win because he wasn't serious enough. Since then I have heard that Kobe wouldn't win without Shaq because he shot too much and was a psychotic asshat, that Dirk wouldn't win because he was a soft Eurowuss, and that LeBron James didn't have the killer instinct that a champion needs to have.

When people use the term "It's a team game" they usually mean stuff about everybody working together, sacrificing stats, etc...you know, "The Secret." But to me, it ALSO means how much actual talent there is on the team, who is running it, and who is coaching it. Right now, the second-best guy on Minnesota is Nikola Pekovic. He is a good player, but not what we usually think of as #2 on a contender, and his skills overlap with Love's in ways that hurt the team a little IMO. I realize that people are not expecting Love to lead Minnesota to the title--just to the playoffs--but if you look at what is behind Love and Pekovic, well, it is a thin group. Adelman is a fine coach, but he is 67 and nearly retired due to his wife's health issues. That may or not be affecting him, but I think it is wiser to look at these issues rather than to assume that the Wolves' problems have something to do with Love.
   93. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: January 06, 2014 at 05:19 PM (#4631640)
I agree with all of that.
   94. clowns to the left of me; STEAGLES to the right Posted: January 06, 2014 at 05:35 PM (#4631661)
good news everyone:

thaddeus young has been named eastern conference player of the week. over the last 7 games, he's averaged 26 points, 8 rebounds and 3 steals per game while shooting 56/50/87.

and on a somewhat related note, over those same 7 games, michael carter williams has averaged 17 points, 5 rebounds, 7 assists and 2+ steals per game. on the season, the sixers are 11-11 when MCW is in the lineup and 1-10 when he's not.
   95. Manny Coon Posted: January 06, 2014 at 05:39 PM (#4631664)
When are teams allowed to sign players that played in China this year? I'm sure a lot of teams wouldn't mind picking someone like Ivan Johnson or Delonte West for the end of the season.
   96. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 06, 2014 at 05:47 PM (#4631672)
In fairness, if Minnesota is in the East, they're easily a playoff team.
   97. Davo Dozier Posted: January 06, 2014 at 05:56 PM (#4631691)
Lin's ranking at the deepest position in the league has to do with any of this. Same thing with his alleged athletic limitations. Lin has historically done well in the stat categories that are used as markers for athleticism, BLK STL REB, is subjectively one of the fastest guys end to end in the league, and objectively one of the best guys in the league driving to the basket and yet we always have to hear about his lack of athleticism. Weird.

Do the same articles that point out Lin's lack of athleticism also point out that he's the smartest guy on the floor, and the grittiest, and the best teammate, and the one with the most heart, and the grittiest?
   98. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: January 06, 2014 at 05:57 PM (#4631695)
on the season, the sixers are 11-11 when MCW is in the lineup and 1-10 when he's not.

Tony Wroten is such a quintessential "off the bench" guy that I was surprised he started at the point when MCW was out, despite him being the only player qualified to do so. 90% of their players are somewhere between 6'6" and 6'7" anyway, so they might as well start some random guy at point guard and bring in Wroten after five minutes.
   99. andrewberg Posted: January 06, 2014 at 06:07 PM (#4631711)
In fairness, if Minnesota is in the East, they're easily a playoff team.


I don't know the strikethrough script, but they'd be the #3 team in the east.
   100. dejarouehg Posted: January 06, 2014 at 08:16 PM (#4631846)
Do the same articles that point out Lin's lack of athleticism also point out that he's the smartest guy on the floor,
Most likely true, but not necessarily in terms of basketball IQ, which is all that counts. He might be, he might not. You sound sure, so how do you know he's smarter (basketball-wise) than Harden?

and the grittiest,
this is usually the adjective applied to the least athletic or the player with the roughest game. It's a b.s. compliment; akin to describing the black player as articulate.

the best teammate,
I have no doubt he's a great teammate but how is he a better teammate than Parsons? Just wondering.

and the one with the most heart,
Now I'm calling complete and utter bullsh*t on you. How do you know this? Please tell me why he has more heart than {pick a player}.

I like Lin. He's an OK player but you're drinking the KoolAid. They have tried to trade him for a year now and couldn't find a taker. Part of this is that there is a clear and inherent prejudice against him b/c of his background - both ethnically and educationally and when he does well it is dismissed as an anomaly.

What can't be dismissed is when the Heat players wanted to make a statement, they buried him. Like Pippen and Jordan once did to Kucoc.

He's a nice player. A smart player. An easy guy to root for. A player I'd love to see back in NY. He is still extremely limited.

FLIP
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