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Everything posted by Mike1989

  1. 2018 Official Offseason Thread

    True but there are some that could require a starting PG... - Knicks are a possibility unless Ntilikina breaks out as a passer. - Bulls are another if Dunn doesn't improve, he's alright not great. - Heat could be in the market for someone if Dragic leaves or they decide not to pay him. We have a chance at attracting someone but we'd need to show significant progression this season. AG would need to have a borderline to all star caliber season, Isaac would need to stay healthy and prove he's a potential high end two way player, and Bamba would need to translate his game to the pros and prove he can be that dominant center and potential unicorn if his outside shot develops. If that young front court plays high level defense and shows a lot of promise, we'll have that to sell FAs on, but another so-so kinda season and they'll likely shun us.
  2. How Can The NBA Become Balanced Again?

    1990s was dominated by the east: 7-3 1980s was a tie: 5-5 1970s was a tie: 5-5 Now granted since 2000 the west have won 13 to the east's 6 titles, but prior to then the east had 17 titles to the west' s 13. So swings happen in the NBA much like they do in the NHL, NFL (etc) when one conference dominates then things change. All it takes is for Boston and Philly to become legitimate title contenders for the next decade, or the Knicks prying away a max level free agent to put alongside KP, Knox, Ntilikina (etc), or ourselves attracting a max level player to put alongside our young front court trio. There's no reason why a few eastern teams can't develop into title contenders and win titles in the near future if the ascending young teams put it all together.
  3. 2018 Official Offseason Thread

    It's possible we could be in a similar position if things go our way. Jonathan Isaac is a high upside player. He is already a very good defense player, if his offense ever improves to the same level he can be an all star. Aaron Gordon had his best year so far in his career last season. If he continues to work hard and get better he has all star potential. Mo Bamba is another high upside player. Defensively he could be a stud. If he develops offensively and adds that beyond the arc shot he's a potential unicorn and all star talent. So that's potentially a trio to build around. If we land another top pick this year that could see us add Barrett or Reddish to slot in at SG. If we don't struggle we'll eventually free up cap space when Vuc and co' s contracts come off the books, and if our young front court become show signs of potential dominance guards might consider coming here via free agency. Alternatively trade players for picks and young talent, hope to get lucky and those picks turn out to be very valuable or some team trades away the next Donovan Mitchell and Rudy Gobert (Denver drafted and traded them to Utah!). Granted all of this comes down to whether our front young court puts it all together and become borderline all star to all star talent, and then us either hitting on future draft picks or moves made in free agents or through trades. But it possible if all goes well for us to be a play off team ascending towards contender status within the next five years if things go our way. Conversely if things don't go our way we'll be drafting top five pretty much every year between now and then, but let's think positive and believe in our talent, our coaching staff and front office. Maybe our time is coming...
  4. 2018 Official Offseason Thread

    Another PF/C. Decent stats in a limited role so might be a useful addition.
  5. 2018 Official Offseason Thread

    Well Vuc did average 4 assists per game on his per36. So maybe the answer to our point guard problems was already on our roster and we've been looking in the wrong place!
  6. 2018 Official Offseason Thread

    So our roster consists of... PG: Augustin, Grant SG/SF: Fournier, Ross, Simmons SF: Isaac, Iwundu, Frazier PF: Gordon, Jackson? C: Vucevic, Bamba, Mozgov, Birch, Johnson A third of our team are centers!
  7. 2018 Official Offseason Thread

    I wouldn't want to be tanking for top odds next year. There's a 48% chance that the teams with 1st-4th worst records can end up picking outside the top four. So teams trying to do their version of the 76ers' process could end up risking it all and ending up with a pick in the 5-8th range, that might still be a franchise changing talent, but looking at next year's class I wouldn't be tanking hard and risking the coin toss going against us.
  8. 2018 Official Offseason Thread

    True there's a risk Butler leaves, but there are risks that come with acquiring Lonzo Ball (How much of a negative factor will his dad be? Will his shooting improve? Can he boost his scoring? How good will his defense be? Is he a star?). Both paths come with the risks but I'd rather take a gamble on Butler since he's a proven all star. We'd also own his bird rights so we could go over the cap to extend him if I'm not mistaken? So that could help us when going for another max level talent next year if we've already got an agreement on board with Butler. With that said if we did acquire Lonzo I wouldn't complain about it. It would be another young piece to add to our front court trio.
  9. 2018 Official Offseason Thread

    Butler is a proven all star and high level defensive player. Add him via trade then try to persuade one of the free agent point guards to come here. Ideally it would be Kyrie or Kemba, but Teague or Dragic would be decent additions on short term deals to help us move up the eastern conference. Add in development from our front court trio and we'd have upside as well. I'd love Butler to come here but I suspect he'll end up in New York with Kyrie as his running mate.
  10. 2018 Official Offseason Thread

    Perhaps they have a deal in place for Schroder? Not sure the Knicks would be interested. They've got Ntilikina, Burke and Mudiay at the PG spots. Hardaway Jr, Dotson and Baker at the SG spot. So guard wise they seem to be fine and without Porzingis they might be looking to tank for a top pick in next year's draft. It would be great if we could get something in return for Vucevic or Fournier, but knowing us we'll not get much in return for them...
  11. 2018 Official Offseason Thread

    It's a case of who needs a starting point guard and are willing to throw the dice on him. I honestly don't see a team in either conference with an open spot, so it was likely to be a backup role for IT. I am surprised he's signed for the deal he has, but at the same time it's a prove it deal and that might make him more appealing this time next year if he's stayed healthy and returned to form. However I suspect a sixth man like role is probably going to be his thing going forwards. Denver is ideal for him and adds a scoring punch to their bench unit. When you can take Jamal Murray off and put on IT that's a good rotation to have.
  12. 2018 Official Offseason Thread

    It does make me question what our intention is for next season. A healthy IT could have been an upgrade over what we've got here, but do we want to win games next season or is our intention to stick with our young talent and development them (ie a semi-final for another top ten pick)? If it's the former then signing IT makes sense because if he does get healthy and return to form then he would boost our win count. However if it's the latter then signing IT makes no sense because he could boost our win total too much. Part of this depends on what our intention and aims for the coming season are. Obviously we need to factor in injuries, do we believe he can overcome them and stay healthy? If not, passing on him makes sense. Then there's the culture side of things, if we want to build a team based around lengthy athletic players that play good defense, again passing on IT makes sense. After his injuries will he be better than DJ? Maybe, maybe not. So even if we push aside the win-loss side of things there are reasons, and perhaps more reasons on top of this, that made us pass on signing IT even at a cheap price. The shame here is that we didn't have the space to take on a salary dump like Faried for a first round pick next year. It would be nice if we could stockpile some picks for future drafts.
  13. 2018 Official Offseason Thread

    Kemba is a potential trade candidate for the deadline if the Hornets are out of play off contention. I see them trying to keep hold of him unless they are blown away by an offer or he gives them the impression he's off. Rozier would be a nice addition, however I see the Celtics keeping him as insurance for Kyrie. The rumors are already rife that he wants to go play in New York, with the risk of him leaving they should keep Rozier around because he's their replacement starting point guard if Kyrie leaves. It would be nice if we could trade for a good starting point guard, but I'm struggling to think of someone that does the bill that's realistically available without a high price tag...
  14. 2018 Official Offseason Thread

    What will probably hold this team back this coming season is the point guard situation. DJ is not really a starting point guard for a good team, and Grant is nothing more than a depth chart player. So unless we get some unexpected production from them I think that will be what will hold us back from becoming a 40 or win team. I still expect us to get into the 30 plus win range next season, but I'm not going wild with my predictions because Isaac and Bamba are having a good summer league. It's one thing to dominate players at the same or similar stage of their development, it's totally different when they come up against the Embiids and Jordan's of the center world, and the LeBrons and Goerges of the forward world. I'd say 35 wins is a realistic win count, with upside to add more if we have an all star breakout from AG and/or get unexpected point guard production.
  15. 2018 Official Offseason Thread

    I'd say more than that. He's got a few seasons guaranteed left on his existing deal. All star. Prolific last season. With what it could cost to acquire him it might not be worth it since his addition alone wouldn't make us a contender.
  16. 2018 Official Offseason Thread

    I still feel that letting go of Nelson was the wrong move to make. As far as I’m aware he was still happy to be here and he could have moved into an off the bench role for Payton, or Nelson could have started and we could have brought Payton off the bench initially and let him develop slowly. Nelson would have been an ideal veteran mentor for our guards and young players and it was a shame our front office decided to waive him. It would have been nice to see him remain a Magic player his entire career.
  17. 2018 Official Offseason Thread

    Unless we sign the guard in free agency. 2019 will feature all star point guards Kemba Walker and Kyrie Irving. If we want a serviceable veteran there's Jeff Teague and Goran Dragic. There's then the shooting guard class headed by Klay Thompson and Jimmy Butler. I doubt we get Kyrie, Thompson or Butler, but we should have a chance at one of the others. This is even pushing aside our 2019 draft pick which could be anything from another high pick to late lottery. The only time we need to trade Gordon is if his development stagnates or we end up drafting a better player, but if neither scenario occurs we should be fairly happy with our young front court. Let's focus on the draft and free agency to fill those guard spots.
  18. 2018 Official Offseason Thread

    That rumor also stated that the reason he prefers the Clippers is because Kawhi wants to be the man, not a sidekick like he would be on the Lakers with LeBron. It is worth noting that Woj disagrees with this and says that Kawhi's preference is to pair with LeBron on the Lakers. At the minute I don't think Kawhi has said publicly which teams he will and won't consider. It's just been hearsay and the leaks his team (mainly his uncle) are giving the media. So I wouldn't say nobody wants to go to the Lakers. PG wanted to stay in OKC and they didn't want Cousins. Not like anyone major has shunned them.
  19. 2018 Official Offseason Thread

    There is undoubted potential on the defensive end for that kind of line up, but the best teams in the league will always find ways to score. Now you might upset the Warriors or Rockets on one given night, but what are the chances of a team restricting them throughout a best of seven series and coming out on top? I'd say it's pretty unlikely. The Spurs managed it once in five games in their first round against the Warriors. As good as Utah's defense was last season they conceded over 100 points in all five games and three of them they conceded over a 110 points. That's the thing about players like Curry, Thompson, Durrant, Harden and co, they can score from pretty much anywhere on the court. If you defend the paint and force them outside, they'll hurt you. If you defend the perimeter to try and restrict their three point shooting and force them to attack the paint, they'll hurt you. When you face teams that feature players and offenses that can hurt you in a multitude of ways it is very difficult to stop them even if you feature a line up like you suggested. The only way you can compete with teams like that is for your defense to slow the opposition's offense sufficiently to keep your own offense in touch with them. Problem with that line up is Smart is not a consistent shooter or scorer, he's a defensive player; Ross is streaky; Isaac is another defensively orientated player that was projected to be more of a third option offensively (at best) rather than a go to option; Gordon is streaky and arguably better suited to being a number two option; and unless Bamba develops into a unicorn he's probably not going to be a go to option in today's NBA like Dwight was for us. Now that's not to say we shouldn't prioritize defense. Look at what the Celtics did to the Cavaliers in the conference finals. First two games they restricted them to 83 and 94 points and took the first two games, problem is that team conceded over 110 points and lost the next two games and in game three only scored 86 points. In game five they restricted the Cavaliers 83 points and won. Final two games they conceded 109 points and lost in game six, then despite conceding only 87 points they lost game seven because they scored only 79 points. When you consider they were missing Kyrie and Hayward, they deserve a ton of credit for what they achieved last season and for nearly getting past the Cavaliers. However, what conference finals series proved was that as important as defense is, you still need to be able to score and put a multi-faceted offense on the court otherwise when you do face the best teams you will struggle to keep up with them no matter how good your defense is. So while I would agree that defense can win championships, in today's NBA the greater priority is being able to score in a multitude of ways just like the Warriors do. Like I said, when teams try to stop them shooting outside they attack inside, when they try to stop them inside they attack outside. Good luck stopping that in a best of seven series. All you can do is try to restrict them but you need an offense to capitalize and that line up arguably would struggle offensively.
  20. 2018 Official Offseason Thread

    That was Jaren Jackson's college career in a nutshell. He'd have games that make your jaw drop, then he'd disappear for a game or two. He's still young so hopefully that goes away with age and experience, but that was a concern with him coming out of college.
  21. 2018 Official Offseason Thread

    We sold Oladipo because for whatever reason we didn't think he was going to be an all star (and neither did OKC otherwise they would have kept him and built around Westbrook, Oladipo, PG and Adams) and preferred Fournier and Hezonja. Hindsight says it was the wrong deal. However he was used in a package to land a potential stretch four and rim protector in Ibaka. At the time that filled a need and potentially was a move to gear us for a play off run. That didn't happen, so trading away Oladipo and Sabonis didn't work out for us. Should we have given Hezonja a fourth year? Yes, but he hadn't shown enough at that point to warrant it. So the gamble our front office took again didn't work. As for Payton that deal never made sense. Saric was a great value pick for us and a fit for our roster. So I do agree with you that our front office's have made some bad decisions, but at the time they made sense to them for them to make the deals that they did.
  22. 2018 Official Offseason Thread

    The issue we've had as a rebuilding team is we haven't always had better options than the guys we picked. - 2013 we took Oladipo. Hindsight says Giannis would have gone first overall in a redraft but in all likelihood Oladipo would go second in a redraft. - 2014 we got Gordon and that pick probably doesn't change in a redraft. Our mistake in this draft was trading Saric for Payton, we should have kept Saric. - 2015 we took Hezonja. Hindsight says Devin Booker or even Myles Turner, but in a redraft they go top four with KP and Embiid. So we'd end up with Russell or Okafor. But at the time Hezonja was arguably the choice for us. - 2016 we picked Sabonis and traded him away, not our smartest move. - 2017 we picked Isaac, not my favored picked but arguably had the most upside. Sure a redraft might get us Fox or Fultz because Mitchell goes ahead of them but that's hindsight for you. - 2018 same as above we picked the players with the most upside in Bamba. To date we have probably picked the best available prospects that were tipped to go in our range. We can't sit back here and say we should have picked Giannis second overall and Mitchell sixth overall because no one knew those guys would turn out like they did. Our front office's took the players they thought were best and the rebuild has not worked. Fingers crossed this front office's picks Isaac and Bamba do work out otherwise we'll have many more years to come in the lottery.
  23. 2018 Official Offseason Thread

    If we could get Ball in a three team trade I'd be very happy, however I could see the Spurs wanting him since they need a better passing point guard than Murray.
  24. 2018 Official Offseason Thread

    I think the most they could have offered Rondo is the full MLE. Not sure what the difference is dollars wise between that and the Lakers deal but was Rondo vital to them? Or could the take a chance on someone cheaper like IT? The Randle move is smart. They can even bring back Cousins since they have his bird rights. Add Davis and Mirotic and they have a good four big rotation.
  25. 2018 Official Offseason Thread

    When compared to our position, he might be better off joining the Knicks. They have an all star caliber player to build around in Kristaps Porzingis. He was well on his way to star status with superstar potential before his injury. As long as he comes back strong from that injury there is no reason why he cannot continue to be the centerpiece for that franchise for a long time. We don't have such a player unless we see Gordon breaks out like Oladipo did with the Pacers, or Isaac or Bamba become that star caliber player. Outside of KP, they have a young high upside combo guard in Frank Ntilikina, they have just drafted a high upside but raw forward in Kevin Knox, Tim Hardaway Jr has just had a career year, and Enes Kanter has opted in and while he's not a dominate defensive player he's an excellent rebounder and leader. They some other talent as well on their roster like Emmanuel Mudiay, Trey Burke, Mitchell Robinson and Damyean Dotson. Add in their cap flexibility starting next year which coincides with KP's return and they might be able to attract big name free agents to a big market as long as they are trending in the right direction. Now we do have some good young upside talent on our roster, and one might argue we are better off because we have a completed front court in Isaac, Gordon and Bamba. So Hezonja would slot in at SG and all we need to do then is address the PG position, but is the SG spot Hezonja's best position? Will he even get an opportunity to start under a veteran orientated head coach? It's tough to say. From a coaching stand point they have hired David Fizdale. He is highly regarded and respected around the league. Player development and developing a strong culture are two things he should bring to that team, and with their young upside talent and existing veterans he has the players to work with to set the foundations for long term success. I personally would have liked to have seen us hire Fizdale rather than Clifford. The positive from Clifford's stand point is that he is a defensive coach that got the Hornets into the top ten in defensive rating in pretty much every season he coached them. So considering we are heading towards building a defensively orientated team around Gordon (if extended), Isaac and Bamba, then hiring Clifford does make sense but he was a fairly uninspiring hire. For me I think Fizdale is the better coach but time will tell. Front office wise the people in charge seem to have a more level headed approach than previous regimes. They have pretty much said they aren't looking to lock any players up into long term deals from this year's free agent pool in order to maximize cap space and flexibility for next year's free agent pool. They have decided to rebuild around their young upside talent, build a strong culture, and be patient. Again another tough one to pick a winner. The issue I have with our front office is they are consistently looking for certain measurements in every prospect, which is fine but measurements aren't everything. I would have liked to have seen us trade up, but there is no doubt that Bamba was a good value pick at six. Time will tell whether their approach in going for length is the right one or not, but front office wise both teams have their preferences and flexibility going forwards. So who holds the advantage? I'd say the Knicks because Hezonja would arguably join Frank Ntilikina, Tim Hardaway jr, Kevin Knox and Enes Kanter in the starting line up. So there should be no shortage of opportunity with them because he arguably wouldn't start for us next season under Clifford. So if Hezonja wants to join a team that will give him a greater opportunity to develop and get more minutes under his belt, then I'd say the Knicks are a better fit, and long term they might be better off because when KP comes back they'll have an all star caliber player to add to their starting line up - which is something we don't currently have. Plus when you combine Fizdale's appeal around the league, their market size, and storied franchise status, they might be better off attracting bigger name free agents in 2019 or 2020 than we might be. Now I hope we do get to bring back Hezonja, but the Knicks do offer a better opportunity, and perhaps the Kings as well because he could land the starting small forward role for them.