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Mr. Verlander
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« Reply #450 on: April 19, 2016, 12:37:59 PM »

I'm quite pleased by the events in the Dallas/OKC game last night. Durant was terrible. I don't think for a second that Dallas is going to win the series, it's just nice to watch those guys lose once in awhile.

And Houston can't beat GS, even without Curry. That is a bad, dysfunctional team.
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the captain
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« Reply #451 on: April 19, 2016, 03:21:19 PM »

I have a hard time imagining Jackson hired over JVG, Thibs, Brooks, Blatt, Messina, Del Negro, McHale, to name just a few. Give me two minutes and I'd probably find another 5-10 available candidates I prefer.

Hopefully it's just a courtesy to an agent or something.

Honestly, his coaching was OK with me (not great, not awful), but by all accounts, he was a bizarre, neurotic leader for the G.S. organization. And I couldn't tolerate the incessant preaching. It was bad enough around here during the Cris Carter / Randall Cunningham Vikings era.
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« Reply #452 on: April 19, 2016, 03:22:42 PM »

And look at the team now! Though Steve Kerr and Luke Walton are a great team as coaches.
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And production aside, Iíd so much rather hear a 14 year old David Marks shred some guitar on Chug-a-lug than hear a 51 year old Mike Love sing about bangin some chick in a swimming pool.-rab2591
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« Reply #453 on: April 19, 2016, 03:32:01 PM »

I want to be careful not to be unfair here, but the way I see it, Kerr has been the opposite of Jackson in managing the staff and team. As a non-Golden Stater (reading a lot, watching a lot, but as an outsider, not a hometown guy ... so not more than any other team), it seemed to me that Jackson tried to rule by intimidation and fear. He reportedly hired weak assistants and staff (and/or undermined the good ones) because he didn't want anyone showing him up. He tried to circle the wagons with the team constantly, not in an inspirational way but in an almost cultish way. And he pushed his religion, his pastorship, onto the team. I know specifically A. Bogut spoke out about that, saying that for those less religious (or otherly religious) people, it was at best awkward.

Kerr, conversely, assembled an amazing staff right out of the gate, including former (and now current) head coach Alvin Gentry. He trusted in his assistants last year in the Finals, and again of course in Walton this year. He lets his players have a certain amount of autonomy. He just seems secure enough in himself to not project authority. Instead, he is given authority, which is the only way to do it. Leadership doesn't come from pushing the weak from behind, but from literally being in the front.
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Mr. Verlander
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« Reply #454 on: April 19, 2016, 04:11:07 PM »

Something I heard this evening is that Thibs wants complete control. Now, I understand that he had a lot of success in Chicago; however, not enough to warrant full control. In reality, I don't agree with anyone having GM and coaching duties in any sport. It may work for awhile, although eventually it (usually) doesn't work out. What's your take, Cap? Would you be willing to hand over the reigns to Thibs?
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the captain
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« Reply #455 on: April 19, 2016, 04:36:45 PM »

The Wolves' plan--regardless of my preferences--is being universally reported as based on the success SVG is having in Detroit. Same search firm that led to that pairing, same salary range in mind, same basic model: a coach with personnel control, and a day-to-day GM who does the legwork required.

As for my take on it? Well ... mixed feelings. Flip had it, so it's not that shocking to my system. Looking around the league, there are mixed results. I think SVG has been great. I think Doc Rivers has been pretty weak on the GM side. Pop has a kind of mixed model, where he has input but I don't know whether he has ultimate control, but obviously that's going well. The optimist in me says it can be really beneficial because it keeps a coach's eyes on the longer-term as well as "the win tonight." Thibs in particular has always been a win-right-the-hell-now head coach, and some argue it cost Derrick Rose, Luol Deng and Joakim Noah parts of their careers. I can't say whether they'd have gotten hurt either way, but the Bulls did seem to get hurt a lot under him. Maybe if he has responsibility for long-term personnel and outcomes, he takes a more balanced approach. I don't know.

But in the end, I'm willing to go this route with both JVG and Thibs. They're both really great basketball minds and I trust their judgment. And again, this assumes there is a full-time GM carrying out their vision (so that job doesn't go undone).
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the captain
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« Reply #456 on: April 20, 2016, 10:46:45 AM »

The almighty Woj says the Wolves are deep in negotiations to hire Thibs! YES!!
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« Reply #457 on: April 20, 2016, 12:24:37 PM »

And it looks like San Antonio's GM is going to Minnesota, too.

There's hope in the frost-bitten air!
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« Reply #458 on: April 20, 2016, 02:59:07 PM »

Their ASSISTANT GM, that is. Scott Layden, who grew up under his dad, the legendary Frank Layden, with the Jazz. He was an assistant coach, a scout, and eventually rose to the top of their front office throughout the great era of the 80s and 90s. Then he went to New York and ran their front office before going to San Antonio in a lesser role. GREAT choice. He has the respect and connections you want in someone working the phones, working relationships, finding deals. Thibs will be leading the way, setting the agenda, and of course making final calls, but Layden will be doing the legwork.

A lot of people seem to think this role, whether for him here or for people like Bower in Detroit, etc., is a useless underling's job. But that's silly. Does anyone really think that an NBA head coach has time to work the phones? To evaluate every little possible deal? Of course not! The GM under a president-coach still has a TON of responsibility and can make or break the arrangement. I think Layden is a great choice.

I'm very excited. I would have been excited with JVG as well. But this is great. Plus, as I've said Thibs was a part of the inaugural Wolves staff under the late, great Coach Musselman. And he coached KG in Boston. There is a certain poetry to it all.
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« Reply #459 on: April 20, 2016, 03:51:58 PM »

All of this is fine, but how long would you give it to see if it works? If they aren't a 2nd round playoff team in 3 years, he has to go? Or if guys start getting hurt (because of Thibs' reputation) frequently over the span of a couple of years?
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the captain
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« Reply #460 on: April 20, 2016, 04:10:56 PM »

The injuries are what I worry about. But our history in that department has been AWFUL the past five or six years, up until this past season. The difference? We hired Arnie Kander from Detroit, who did a great job by all accounts keeping people healthy. Pekovic, yeah, but you can't blame Kanter for a 6-11 musclebound 300-plus pounder who has bad feet. KG, yeah, but I think that was strategic to let the young guys play (again).

So, as far as how long to run with it? I'd say we need to be in the playoff hunt next year (and preferably in the playoffs--I personally think making the playoffs is a very achievable goal), 100% in the playoffs in year 2, and a top 4 seed by year 3. I don't want to put advancement into the picture yet, you need to see who you're up against and such. But we should be a top-4 seed in year 3. (And we easily could be in year 2. I feel really strongly about KAT and Rubio, and pretty strongly about Wig and LaVine.)
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SMiLE Brian
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« Reply #461 on: April 20, 2016, 04:52:13 PM »

Cap's celebrating tonight!
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And production aside, Iíd so much rather hear a 14 year old David Marks shred some guitar on Chug-a-lug than hear a 51 year old Mike Love sing about bangin some chick in a swimming pool.-rab2591
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« Reply #462 on: April 21, 2016, 12:26:28 PM »

Pistons lost, yet looks like some good stuff brewing; Stanley Johnson calling out the Cavs bench and saying that a small bump from Lebron was a 'cheap-ass shot'. He also said that he knows that he's in Lebron's head. Now, I don't believe that for a second, although to be honest, I like this kind of tough nosed stuff. It's better than kissing Lebron's ass and acting like you think he's the greatest thing since sliced bread. I'm going out on a limb and saying that I think Detroit gets a win in the next game.
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the captain
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« Reply #463 on: April 22, 2016, 05:41:01 AM »

Stanley Johnson is really stepping up and showing why he has had such a sterling reputation the past couple years, dating back to his high school career. He was always praised as a winner, and I have to admit, when I saw him at Arizona I wasn't particularly impressed. He reminded me of Shabazz Muhammad (who reminded me of my mental prototype for this kind of player Schea Cotton, from back in the '90s): a power wing, a big, bulky guy who just overpowered his competition, but as that competition got better, showed flaws. Lack of elite athleticism. Lack of height. Lack of shooting. Really just had to refine his game. Players like that need to change their bodies and skills to make it.

But watching Johnson in these playoffs, I get what the "it" is about him. It's his attitude. He's a competitor and he's a winner. So even just based on that, I think he's going to be a really good player.
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B.E.
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« Reply #464 on: May 24, 2016, 05:56:57 PM »

So, will the Thunder do the unthinkable tonight in OKC and take a commanding 3-1 series lead over the Warriors?

Between this development and the Raptors winning both games in Toronto to even up the series 2-2, my interest has been somewhat restored in this year’s playoffs. I haven’t watched any games, coverage of games, or kept up with the news/rumors of the NBA since the Spurs were eliminated. I have been checking the box scores though. I’m not surprised OKC has had success against the Warriors after watching every minute of the OKC/SA series. Adams, in particular, impressed me. He’s only 22 years old? Remarkable, he’s built for the modern NBA. I’d love to see him in a Knicks uniform alongside KP. Not surprising Bogut has hardly played in this series, he is no match for Adams.

Certainly gonna tune in tonight and Game 5 of the TOR/CLE series, interesting to see what happens.

Random NBA rant:

-It seems rule changes are coming to curb the Hack-A-Player strategy. I am completely against an outright ban of Hack-A-Player. Honestly, I enjoy it and find it intriguing. Granted, I haven’t had to suffer through it night after night and I feel bad for fans who pay outrageous sums of money to see a game in person and be subjected to Hack-A-Player if they don’t also find it intriguing like I do. As far as it not being a natural part of the game…fouling is part of the game. Strategy is part of the game. I do think minor changes can and have been made to eliminate some of the more creative usages of the strategy, such as, intentionally fouling an inbounder (was that even officiated correctly? Idk), fouling players on the block during a free throw, etc…at the end of the day the NBA can do whatever it wants, the rules have never been set in stone. With that said, is it even plausible to ban it? The refs miss enough calls as it is (thanks “2 minute officiating report” for reminding us) how are they going to judge when it is or isn’t being used. Sure it’s obvious when you foul a player before he passes midcourt, but what happens when the offensive team starts running a play? Furthermore, I’ve read a bunch of potential solutions for the Hack-A-Player strategy and none of them have appealed to me. Perhaps if a player isn’t a well-rounded player you shouldn’t pay him the max! And if you’re desperate enough to do so, don’t count on him being on the court when you need him.
(if any developments on this issue have occurred in the past 2 weeks, my apologies, I am unaware)
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SurferDownUnder
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« Reply #465 on: May 25, 2016, 12:06:01 AM »

So, will the Thunder do the unthinkable tonight in OKC and take a commanding 3-1 series lead over the Warriors?

Between this development and the Raptors winning both games in Toronto to even up the series 2-2, my interest has been somewhat restored in this yearís playoffs. I havenít watched any games, coverage of games, or kept up with the news/rumors of the NBA since the Spurs were eliminated. I have been checking the box scores though. Iím not surprised OKC has had success against the Warriors after watching every minute of the OKC/SA series. Adams, in particular, impressed me. Heís only 22 years old? Remarkable, heís built for the modern NBA. Iíd love to see him in a Knicks uniform alongside KP. Not surprising Bogut has hardly played in this series, he is no match for Adams.

Certainly gonna tune in tonight and Game 5 of the TOR/CLE series, interesting to see what happens.

Random NBA rant:

-It seems rule changes are coming to curb the Hack-A-Player strategy. I am completely against an outright ban of Hack-A-Player. Honestly, I enjoy it and find it intriguing. Granted, I havenít had to suffer through it night after night and I feel bad for fans who pay outrageous sums of money to see a game in person and be subjected to Hack-A-Player if they donít also find it intriguing like I do. As far as it not being a natural part of the gameÖfouling is part of the game. Strategy is part of the game. I do think minor changes can and have been made to eliminate some of the more creative usages of the strategy, such as, intentionally fouling an inbounder (was that even officiated correctly? Idk), fouling players on the block during a free throw, etcÖat the end of the day the NBA can do whatever it wants, the rules have never been set in stone. With that said, is it even plausible to ban it? The refs miss enough calls as it is (thanks ď2 minute officiating reportĒ for reminding us) how are they going to judge when it is or isnít being used. Sure itís obvious when you foul a player before he passes midcourt, but what happens when the offensive team starts running a play? Furthermore, Iíve read a bunch of potential solutions for the Hack-A-Player strategy and none of them have appealed to me. Perhaps if a player isnít a well-rounded player you shouldnít pay him the max! And if youíre desperate enough to do so, donít count on him being on the court when you need him.
(if any developments on this issue have occurred in the past 2 weeks, my apologies, I am unaware)


I think we saw "glorified role player" Draymond Green tonight instead of "borderline star" Draymond Green...and I don't mind one bit Wink
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the captain
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« Reply #466 on: June 12, 2016, 03:37:04 PM »

Been away from this thread (and mostly the board) a while, but in belated response to that last post, it'll be interesting tomorrow night to see exactly where Green lies on that spectrum between "glorified role player" and "borderline star." By the way, a lot of people don't think he's a borderline star, but a full fledged one. Some people think he's a top-10 kind of player.

Personally I think he's somewhat unique, in that he's hugely important without being exactly a star. He's not someone who can be a focal point of a team offensively, at least in terms of scoring the ball. But he is so important to the way the Golden State offense works, he is really the fulcrum on which the levers function. The screen and pop/rolls with him and Curry or Thompson are just deadly, and they are deadly because he can take smalls on switches either by shooting over them or backing them down, or he can blow past bigs who stay with him, or he can take handoffs and pass to (often wide open) corner shooters. He's phenomenal reversing the ball. And he's a really good defender.

So yeah, with him suspended tomorrow night, we'll see how important he is. Will they go small and play Iguodala/Livingston and Barnes as the forwards? Or go with youngster J.M. McAdoo, who got some minutes the other night? It'll be fun to watch.

(But I'll be honest, I'm almost more excited for the draft, free agency, and summer league.)
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« Reply #467 on: June 12, 2016, 04:17:33 PM »

I think that he'd be a good player wherever he would've been drafted; I think that he's great in GS because it was the perfect fit. Sometimes, it just turns out that way!

I'm looking forward to the draft, also. I'm looking forward to seeing where Denzel Valentine and Deyonta Davis end up. Last I heard, Denzel was slipping, which seems insane to me. The NBA just doesn't seem to like guys who played an entire college career. They want the 1 or 2 year guys with a lot of 'upside'.

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the captain
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« Reply #468 on: June 12, 2016, 04:25:52 PM »

It's the perennial--at least for the past 20 or 25 years--problem. Upside ... or rather, perceived upside. Swing for the fences, gamble on the athlete, that keeps the draft analysts and fans excited for a year or two--right up until your gamble flames out 9/10 times. Yes, you might miss out on Kevin Garnett (one of the original modern-era upside picks). But more likely you'll land on a Ndudi Ebi, a Stromile Swift, a Tyrus Thomas, a Mohammad Saer Sene, etc. along an endless list of "potential" guys whose drafters confused "physical attributes" with "basketball potential."

There is always a Denzel Valentine for teams willing to take him. I think back to the mid-late '90s with Anthony Parker, a swingman who played at Bradley. He was a sort of jack-of-all-trades, 6-5 guy who seemed a sure thing. He was a late 1st rounder who was mostly ignored and had to go overseas. Eventually he came back to the NBA to have a key role, especially in Toronto. He is the 11th leading scorer from that draft at 9.1 ppg, with 40 3pt% and 44 FG%, 3 rpg, 2 apg. He was a good--but obviously not great--player. And because of "upside," he ended up going later than his production would have dictated.

Not every experienced, proven college player translates to the NBA, obviously. But raw talent without production more often than not fails, in my opinion.
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« Reply #469 on: June 13, 2016, 05:32:23 AM »

Some people think he's a top-10 kind of player.

I would call him a solid 2-way player, in that he excels at nothing but is good at everything.  His defense is what sets him apart, and when him and Iguadala are on the floor it's a nightmare for the opposing team.  He owes much of his success though, to the Thompson/Curry long range threat.
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the captain
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« Reply #470 on: June 13, 2016, 05:48:40 AM »

Certainly playing with good players always makes all players look better. And people who (to use a cliche) "play the right way," even more so. I think of guys like Boris Diaw, Toni Kukoc, Derrick McKey: nothing special in box scores and not featured guys, but they help(ed) good teams more than bad ones. Even Danny Manning was a little like that in the NBA, though he was higher profile and scored more.
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« Reply #471 on: June 16, 2016, 03:54:20 PM »

Draymond Green needs to play his typical defense and be the leader on the floor tonight. Don't let the Cavs lure him into any stupid mistakes. Not having Bogut hurts, but the Warriors should be able to pull this off tonight. If both Thompson and Curry get going, it's all over. That's a big "If", though.

If the Cavs lose tonight, or if they actually win the series, these are probably the last games that Love wears a Cavs jersey.
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« Reply #472 on: June 17, 2016, 05:42:29 AM »

Quote

If the Cavs lose tonight, or if they actually win the series, these are probably the last games that Love wears a Cavs jersey.

I think you called this one right.  His decision to come to Cleveland has devalued him.  Not necessarily the wrong decision at the time, but that's they way it worked out.  Wherever he lands he'll be better off.
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the captain
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« Reply #473 on: June 17, 2016, 05:56:09 AM »

I think Love was done in Cleveland regardless of last night. But remember, bachelorofbullets, it wasn't his decision to go to Cleveland. He was traded there. Yes, he could have fought it to some extent, and as a then-impending free agent, that would have carried weight, but he was more in position to veto, as opposed to pick his spot. It was David Griffin's, Flip Saunders's, and probably Lebron James's decision.

The reality is, Golden State snuck up on the league in those two years Love has been in Cleveland, and they--particularly when they go to that Green-at-center lineup--are a huge problem for Love. The game in which Love excels isn't the game that beats the Warriors. And clearly there are chemistry issues, no matter what they all say.

There are still teams that would love to have him, and he's a really good player. It all comes down to who would trade for him, and what they could give Cleveland. The Cavs aren't looking for a bevy of picks so much as immediate contributors, ideally long, athletic wing players. Boston, Portland, one of the LA teams, Toronto...those are the teams that come to mind.
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« Reply #474 on: June 17, 2016, 03:50:04 PM »

The game last night is why I never bet on anything.
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