↓ Login/Logout ↓
Schedule/Results
↓ Roster ↓
Salaries
↓ Archives ↓
↓ About ↓

Joe Dumars hasn’t made a bad move in more than two years

The Pistons have one of the worst rosters in the NBA. They’re capped out because of under-producing veterans and lack elite young talent. The picture looks bleak.

But flash back to July 13, 2009. The situation was even more dire then, even if we all didn’t know it yet.

That day, Joe Dumars traded Arron Afflalo to the Nuggets for a second-round pick. Dumars preceded the move by hiring John Kuester, signing Ben Gordon and Charlie Villanueva and trading Chauncey Billups for Allen Iverson.

Here’s the bright side, though: that was rock bottom. As poorly put together as the Pistons were at that moment, they haven’t take a step back since. That doesn’t change the fact that Dumars got the Pistons into this mess, and it doesn’t change the fact that Dumars hasn’t made the Pistons relevant again yet. But it should count for something – because I wasn’t exaggerating.

Since Dumars essentially gave Arron Afflalo to the Nuggets, the Pistons general manger hasn’t slipped once. Let’s look at all his moves between then and now:

Signed Chris Wilcox to a two-year, $6 million contract

Good move

Wilcox played well late in the season, and $3 million per year with just a two-year commitment is a bargain for a rotation-caliber big man.

Signed Ben Wallace to a one-year, veteran’s-minimum contact

Good move

Wallace was the Pistons’ best defender in 2009-10 and arguably the team’s best player that year. He was definitely one of the best bargains in the NBA.

Invited Maceo Baston to training camp

Neutral move

He had no real effect on the franchise.

Signed Chucky Atkins

Neutral move

Atkins surprised everyone by making the team, and he even had his moments during the regular-season. But overall, a team’s 13th man just doesn’t matter much.

Waived Maceo Baston from training camp roster

Neutral move

Expected since the moment he signed.

Waived Deron Washington

Neutral move

“Former 59th pick fails to make NBA roster” isn’t really a front-page headline.

Drafted Greg Monroe with the No. 8 pick in 2010 NBA draft

Good move

Based on draft-night logic, Monroe was an excellent pick, and his great rookie year only reinforced that.*

*I’m tired of people claiming Dumars doesn’t deserve credit for picking Monroe.

Imagine this alternate universe where the Pistons had the sixth, not the seventh pick, in the draft and the first five picks were John Wall, Evan Turner, Derrick Favors, Wesley Johnson and DeMarcus Cousins. The Pistons drafted Monroe, and today, people argue Dumars deserves no credit for the pick because Monroe was the only logical choice.

If that had happened, few people would question the Dumars detractors. None of the other available prospects held candle to Monroe. Why should Dumars get credit for doing what every other general manager would have done in that scenario?

But that scenario did happen, except the Warriors, not the Pistons had the sixth pick. And, of course, you know what they did. The drafted Ekpe Udoh, not Monroe. So, maybe Dumars’ options in reality at No. 7 weren’t as foolproof as they seem now. There are no certainties in the draft, and it’s not uncommon for general mangers to buck conventional wisdom.

Dumars got it right. He could’ve gotten it wrong, but he didn’t. He deserves credit for that.

Drafted Terrico White with the No. 36 pick in 2010 NBA draft

Neutral move

White’s jumper looked smooth during the summer league, and his athleticism stood out even during a photo shoot. But a broken foot sidelined him for the season, so it’s essentially impossible to grade that pick.

Re-signed Ben Wallace to two-year, $3.8 million contract

Good move

Wallace wasn’t as effective last season as he was in 2010, but he was still capable of starting on a bad team or playing backup on a good team. If his abilities erode further, I suspect he’ll retire rather than come back. For the money, he’s still a bargain – just less of one than on his previous contract.*

*As crazy as it is, Wallace is probably less valuable (production divided by salary) than he’s ever been to the Pistons. And he’s paid barely more than the minimum salary! That just shows how big a bargain he was before.

Signed Tracy McGrady to one-year, veteran’s-minimum contract

Good move

McGrady had a bounce-back season playing point guard for Detroit and definitely outplayed his contract.

Signed Vernon Hamilton to training camp roster

Neutral move

Hamilton was excited, but the move was a yawner.

Signed Ike Diogu to training camp roster

Neutral move

Maceo Baston 2.0

Waived Vernon Hamilton from training camp roster

Neutral move

Even more yawn inducing.

Waived Ike Diogu from training camp roster

Neutral move

Maceo Baston 2.0

Fired John Kuester

Good move

Duh

Drafted Brandon Knight with the No. 8 pick in 2011 NBA draft

Good move

Even if he’s not a lock to become an NBA success, Knight was the best player available at No. 8.

Drafted Kyle Singler with the No. 33 pick in 2011 NBA draft

Neutral move

I don’t think Singler has the talent and athleticism to stick in the NBA, but at least he’ll probably play hard and act professionally. Let’s call it a wash. Besides, I’m not sure a second-round pick can ever be a bad move. Too few of them ever impact the NBA.

Drafted Vernon Macklin with the No. 52 pick in 2011 NBA draft

Neutral move

By this point, the draft had basically run out of NBA players. You have to take someone.

Hired Lawrence Frank as head coach

Good move

He’s hard-working, bright and gives the Pistons a better chance of succeeding than any other coach available when Detroit hired him.

So, that’s the list. By my count, Dumars went 8-0-11.

None of these moves have gotten the Pistons out of the cellar, and there’s still plenty of work ahead. Maybe the rise hasn’t  been as quick as anyone had hoped, and maybe Detroit won’t turn the corner anytime soon.

But, slowly, the Pistons have been headed straight in the right direction, or at least avoiding their journey in the wrong direction, for a long time – 758 days and counting.* I doubt any other general managers have served that long without making a bad move. The feat won’t cause anyone to throw Dumars a parade, but it’s at least something.

*717 days if you want to pause the clock during the lockout.

The next time someone asks when Dumars made his last good move, here’s my response:

When’s the last time he made a bad move?

378 Comments

  • Aug 10, 20119:14 am
    by tarsier

    Reply

    Interesting point. But I don’t think you can call Knight a good move yet. Based on most rankings, he was the best player at that point. But you can’t evaluate a draft pick very effectively before the next season even begins.
    Also, I would consider turning down Prince for Butler + pick a bad move even if it was more of a non-move than a move.

    • Aug 10, 20119:34 am
      by tarsier

      Reply

      Interesting side note: if the Prince trade had happened and Dallas still wins it all, what percentage of fans would have said that there is no way they would have one it without Tay?

    • Aug 10, 201110:02 am
      by Patrick Hayes

      Reply

      See, in this particular year, I don’t consider turning that deal down a bad thing, it was probably neutral. The draft was weak, so taking that deal could’ve just meant you’d get stuck paying guaranteed first round money to someone who would be a second round talent in any normal year. I guess they could’ve picked JaJuan Johnson there, who I like, but I just don’t think a late first round pick in this draft was all that valuable.

      • Aug 10, 201110:28 am
        by brgulker

        Reply

        Considering that Dallas turned that pick into Fernandez, I’ve gotta disagree. 

        Yeah, that’s hindsight, but I was for that move from the second I heard it.

        • Aug 10, 201110:34 am
          by Patrick Hayes

          Reply

          I’m not saying it’s impossible to get value for that pick. I’m just saying that in this particular draft, if you’re using that pick to draft a player as the Pistons most likely would’ve been since they haven’t made a trade in forever, there’s a good chance you’re going to take a guy who doesn’t develop, only you’re stuck paying him for three years.

          • Aug 10, 201110:48 am
            by Birdman84

            Sure, you’re stuck paying him, but you’re not paying him very much. It would hardly hurt payroll flexibility. And taking the chance that a late first rounder might develop would be worth the cost. Dumars had had some success drafting in that range, after all. I know Dumars justified not trading Prince by advocating a sign-and-trade, but those are difficult to work out and would be tough to finangle financially.

          • Aug 10, 201110:53 am
            by Patrick Hayes

            Well, the sale of the team wasn’t finalized and, even if it’s a minimal amount, a first round pick is still taking on future salary obligations.

            I agree with you on a sign and trade. I don’t really think it’s going to be possible.

          • Aug 10, 201111:04 am
            by tarsier

            I can see where you are coming from but most GMs pretty much fill out their rosters anyway. So a cheap late first-rounder seems worth having. Or else Dumars could have pushed for getting a firsty next year instead if he really didnt like this draft. What are the odds Dallas turns down that very slightly modified trade? Anyway, I agree that the loss isn’t much. But draft picks have at least some value and I don’t expect Prince to net Detroit any now. But I will happily hold back judgment until I see what does happen with Prince.

      • Aug 11, 20111:42 pm
        by Dan Feldman

        Reply

        Patrick, I disagree with you from a roster-building standpoint. Name one player on a rookie contract who his team couldn’t give away. It’s just a two-year commitment and the rookie scale keeps wages so far down, it’s definitely worth the risk.

        That said, you make a good point about adding long-term salary. Not sure exactly what Dumars’ rules were with that.

        • Aug 11, 20111:48 pm
          by Patrick Hayes

          Reply

          The point isn’t that you can’t easily get rid of a rookie contract player. My point was just that, in this draft, it wasn’t like that Dallas pick was a phenomenal asset to have. Maybe he thinks he can sign and trade Prince for a late first next year or something.

          • Aug 11, 20112:47 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            But that Dallas pick is better than nothing, right? That’s my point.

            The idea of getting a 2012 first-round pick is interesting. I don’t think the Pistons can get that, but if they can, that’s certainly better than the Dallas pick. The draft will be much better then.

          • Aug 11, 20116:42 pm
            by tarsier

            But don’t you think that if Dumars had asked the Mavs for their 2012 pick in exchange for Prince, that likely would have been accepted?

          • Aug 11, 20116:48 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            Not really sure. Obviously, the 2012 is more valuable. Plus, that would’ve meant Dallas couldn’t trade its 2011 pick, because of the Stepien rule.

    • Aug 11, 20111:40 pm
      by Dan Feldman

      Reply

      Tarsier, moves should be evaluated both based on how they appeared at the time and how they turned out. We can judge half of the Knight pick now, and it’s definitely on the plus side.

      As far as counting the Prince-to-Dallas trade, there’s no fair way to count that. If you can’t that as a bad move, you must count all the other trades Dumars turned down, and there’s no way to do that.

  • Aug 10, 20119:21 am
    by neutes

    Reply

    I agree that Knight can’t be called a good move yet. Even if draft ‘experts’ had him as best available that doesn’t mean individuals teams shouldn’t be accountable for evaluating him. At the moment that move has to be considered neutral.
     
    Dumars really killed it all in less than one season. If you could just strip one season from his whole tenure it looks good, but that one season will be felt for a long time.

  • Aug 10, 20119:53 am
    by Birdman84

    Reply

    This makes an interesting point. Of course, it is cherry-picking of the highest order. Most of these moves were either obvious or provided minor benefits.
    A lack of any egregiously bad moves does not make Dumars a good GM. Dumars during this time failed to dump any of the bad contracts on the team. Perhaps his hands were tied to some extent by the ownership situation (although that doesn’t explain why the rumored Butler-Prince trade was declined). But those bad contracts were given out by Dumars. As long as they are dragging down this team, they must be factored into any analysis of Dumars’ success.

    • Aug 11, 20111:44 pm
      by Dan Feldman

      Reply

      “As long as they are dragging down this team, they must be factored into any analysis of Dumars’ success.”

      If you’re talking about the overall picture, yes. But I’m writing just about the last two years.

      • Aug 11, 20114:52 pm
        by Birdman84

        Reply

        Pretty much all of the moves in the past two years have been quite minor. Dumars likely had his hands tied somewhat with the sale of the team, but his hands were also tied due to the messed up salary structure he created. You looked only at the results but not the (in my opinion, more important) causes, which gives a biased view of what Dumars has done.

        • Aug 11, 20115:21 pm
          by Dan Feldman

          Reply

          Nazr Mohammed was a bad signing. Dumars still found a way to trade him. Mateen Cleaves, Rodney White and Darko Milicic were all bad draft picks. Dumars still found ways to trade them for value.

          If his hands weren’t tied with the sale, I don’t think the current Pistons were untradable.

          • Aug 11, 20118:59 pm
            by Laser

            bah. we’ll see how untradable these clowns are, with the added benefit of subtracted years from their bloated contracts. the fact of the matter is, you gotta have some pretty damn rose-colored glasses to ignore this: at his most restricted, joe was allowed to trade for expiring contracts and draft picks (heck, he was even allowed to attach a huge pick to rip just to be rid of him). he couldn’t give these guys away, making it a pretty safe conclusion that nobody in the league values these guys at all on their contracts.
             
            joe could probably trade one or two of them, but he’s going to take a major loss. this isn’t mazr mohammed territory. mohammed’s “atrocious” contract was the same size as maxiell’s and dude was our starting center. at the moment, we have three (3) contracts that are all MUCH worse than max’s. much, much, much worse. it’s a wonder you even believe this garbage that joe dumars has been the victim of bad luck in any way.

  • Aug 10, 201110:15 am
    by brgulker

    Reply

    Dumars hasn’t made a bad move, or Dumars hasn’t made any moves important enough to put the franchise back on the track to success?

    The latter, IMO.

    Also, Knight was not the best player available. He is the player who probably had the most upside and potential, but he was absolutely not the best player. The pundits all had him rated highly, but again, his performance doesn’t warrant the praise. Not yet.

    Knight wasn’t very good as a freshman. He might develop. He might not. The guys who were better than him in the NCAA last year don’t have the upside (god, I hate using that phrase), but they were better, and they fit our needs better – either Morris brother and Faried were clearly better and a great examples.

    If Dumars can’t trade Rip or Gordon, or if he re-signs Stuckey, it’s an even worse pick. 

    • Aug 10, 201110:18 am
      by brgulker

      Reply

      Also on Knight, there are players like him in literally every draft. They are a dime a dozen. Sometimes, they improve their shooting and handling skills and carve out roles in the NBA. But most of the time (just look through the past five years DraftExpress projections compared to who’s still in the league), these kinds of players don’t pan out.

      The only reason any Piston fans thinks he will is because we’re Pistons fans, and we all sip the Kool Aid.

      At his best, he might become Stuckey with a jumpshot. Don’t get me wrong, I’ll take that. But that’s absolute best-case scenario.

      How often to lottery picks become their best case scenario?

      • Aug 10, 201110:23 am
        by Patrick Hayes

        Reply

        I mostly agree with your take on Knight, and I also hate when people talk about ‘upside.’ But two things get me more excited about Knight than I would typically about a 19-year-old upside pick: first, the Calipari factor – say what you want about the dude, but I trust his ability to find elite talent; and secondly, I love Knight’s intelligence and work ethic. I think he has a better chance than most to reach that potential because he seems to have a good head on his shoulders and understands the work that he needs to do.

        You’re right, he still might not live up to his best case scenario, but I’d bet on him over some other players who were comparable skill-wise in recent drafts.

        • Aug 10, 201111:45 am
          by brgulker

          Reply

          I totally agree with this. There are also recent examples of Calipari coached PGs who turned it over more in college than the pros.

          Dude could be a solid player in a few years. Stuckey with a three point shot would be a nice pick up in a weak draft. I’m hoping, like everyone else, that he gets there.

      • Aug 10, 201111:08 am
        by tarsier

        Reply

        Utah and Toronto were rumored to like Knight. I still hold out hope that he can be flipped (perhaps with Daye and a couple others to make contracts work) for Millsap or Toronto’s first rounder next year.

        • Aug 10, 20113:47 pm
          by detroitpcb

          Reply

          anybody that wants to flip Daye and Knight is crazy. Daye still could be Kevin Durant lite with proper coaching and a clearly defined role and Knight is going to be better than most people think. At the end of his career i bet most people will take his stats and acomplishments over Irving.

          Joe’s hands were tied. He could not rectify the mistakes he made in extending Rip and signing Gordon and CV. If we ever see a new CBA this year, you can bet Joe will be active in fixing this roster.

          • Aug 10, 20116:12 pm
            by tarsier

            Kevin Durant lite? Hah! More like Wesley Johnson lite.

          • Aug 11, 20112:39 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            If the Thunder decide that they’d rather have a younger cheaper version of Durant and offer him for Daye, should the Pistons make the trade? You shouldn’t make a blanket statement that Detroit should refuse any Daye trade without knowing what he could fetch in return.

          • Aug 11, 20117:03 pm
            by tarsier

            I think he was referring to if the Pistons got back what I proposed, namely Millsap or Toronto’s next first rounder.

          • Aug 11, 20117:09 pm
            by Patrick Hayes

            Man, I’ve seen it dozens of times now, but I still crack up every time he breaks out that Austin Daye-Kevin Durant comparison. Daye-Stuckey are a regular Durant-Westbrook.

      • Aug 10, 20111:17 pm
        by khandor

        Reply

        @ Ben,
        re: “Also on Knight, there are players like him in literally every draft. They are a dime a dozen.”
        ————————————————-
        Are you being serious, when you make this comment? Because, if you are, then, IMO, time will eventually prove that YOUR opinion on this specific topic is/was wholly WRONG.
        PGs with the specific package of skills that Brandon Knight brings to the table are NOT a dime a dozen in the NBA. In fact, they are quite rare breed that come along infrequently.

        • Aug 10, 20111:27 pm
          by Patrick Hayes

          Reply

          Ben’s comment is 100 percent accurate. I mean, you are arguing with him because you feel the need to argue everything he says. But there’s nothing wrong with the statement he made. He did not say Knight was a bad player. He didn’t even say Knight was a bad pick. But the truth about the kid is he’s not a point guard yet. He has a skillset that suggests he might be able to become a pretty good one. Right now, he’s an athletic, big guard who is still young and developing. If he can develop into a decent PG, he represents incredible value. If he can’t, he’ll be another undersized combo guard with minimal value.

          I mean, there are dozens of names of guys every year who fit that description — Rashad McCants, DaJuan Wagner, Randy Foye, Jerryd Bayless, Jonny Flynn, and that’s just off the top of my head. Those guys were all actually better college players than Knight.

          Knight has nice tools. He has a good head on his shoulders. He has raw talent. Those things will hopefully conspire together to make him a really decent player in the league. But to act like he’s some sort of can’t-miss PG prospect right now is ridiculous. There is zero wrong with Ben’s statement.

          • Aug 10, 20112:25 pm
            by khandor

            @ Patrick,
            1. “Arguing with Ben” is not related to my comment in the least.
            2. Which of McCants, Wagner, Foye, Bayless and Flynn was a “starting PG”, as a true freshmen, led his team to the NCAA D1 semi-finals, made a difficult driving/falling-to-the-ground-semi-scoop-layup-vs-Princeton in the 1st Rd of March Madness after being 0-11 to that point in the contest, made the winning perimeter jump-shot in the closing seconds of the 2010 McDonalds’ All-American High School Game, shoots the ball with an almost ideal “release angle” on his jump-shot, is a +90% student-athlete, is also known for his outstanding work ethic, and is someone who has succeeded in a major way at every stage of his life to this point?
            3. Just because YOU find little-to-nothing WRONG with Ben’s assessment of Brandon Knight’s ability to succeed in the NBA, as a legitimate starting PG, at the present time … and based on his basketball career to-date, does NOT mean that your perception is actually accurate.

          • Aug 10, 20112:40 pm
            by Patrick Hayes

            That post is gibberish. Seriously, anecdotal junk like the things you just rattled off are the reasons players get taken way too high. I mean, that would be like me (or David Kahn) saying that Jonny Flynn is totally a can’t miss prospect because of that time he played all those minutes in a six overtime game for Syracuse. Relying solely on highlights to evaluate players is a stupid, failed, simplistic way to do it.

            Knight is a talented prospect. No one has disputed that. He’s also a guy who spent a good portion of his freshman season struggling because he was learning to play PG after being mainly a scorer as a HS player.

            There are phenomenally talented athletes in every single draft. Invariably, a significant percentage of those phenomenally talented athletes fail to meet the lofty expectations people such as yourself set for them. To predict that a 19-year-old who is still learning his position is destined for greatness because you totally loved a scoop shot he made against a crappy Ivy League team that shouldn’t have even been close to his team in the first place is a little premature, I think.

            “Just because YOU find little-to-nothing WRONG with Ben’s assessment of Brandon Knight’s ability to succeed in the NBA, as a legitimate starting PG, at the present time … and based on his basketball career to-date, does NOT mean that your perception is actually accurate.”

            Ben’s initial comment didn’t say a damn thing about whether or not Knight has the ability to succeed in the NBA. He simply said that there are players like Knight in every draft — guys with amazing athletic tools who have that ‘upside’ label — who fail to pan out. There is zero that is inaccurate with that statement.

          • Aug 10, 20112:44 pm
            by tarsier

            Really, you consider Knight going 0-11 and then luckily making a terrible shot to put him at 1-12 a point in his favor? If it weren’t pretty meaningless (because it’s only one game), it would be a pretty strong argument against him.

            His combination of basketball skill and academic ability most certainly makes him not “a dime a dozen” as a person. But from an NBA perspective, his academic track record is pretty meaningless.

          • Aug 10, 20112:56 pm
            by khandor

            @ Patrick,
            Specificity is important.
            To a certain extent, THIS [i.e. what I wrote before] is a highly accurate, albeit only partial, description of who exactly Brandon Knight has, in fact, been, as an elite level basketball player, to this point in his young career:
            “A ‘starting PG’, as a true freshmen, who led his team to the NCAA D1 semi-finals, made a difficult driving/falling-to-the-ground-semi-scoop-layup-vs-Princeton in the 1st Rd of March Madness after being 0-11 to that point in the contest, made the winning perimeter jump-shot in the closing seconds of the 2010 McDonalds’ All-American High School Game, shoots the ball with an almost ideal “release angle” on his jump-shot, is a +90% student-athlete, is also known for his outstanding work ethic, and is someone who has succeeded in a major way at every stage of his life to this point.”
            It is factually incorrect to suggest that someone with THIS specific skill-set actually fits into the same generic category as untold numbers of, “guys with amazing athletic tools who have that ‘upside’ label — who fail to pan out.”

          • Aug 10, 20113:10 pm
            by khandor

            @ tarsier,
            In your opinion:
            Q1. What percentage of players would have passed on the opportunity to shoot the ball at all, in that situation, after being 0-11, as a true freshman PG?
            Q2. What percentage of players would have missed that same shot, in that situation, after being 0-11, as a true freshman PG?
            In my professional opinion, as someone who evaluates the performance of athletes and coaches, on an on-going basis, when you look at the 2:15 mark of the following video clip:
            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kLg7AV4Dg9c
            what you should be able to see is a remarkable accomplishment for a fairly rare breed on athlete, if you have a keen eye for top flight NBA talent performing in specific situations.

          • Aug 10, 20113:30 pm
            by khandor

            @ tarsier,
            re: “But from an NBA perspective, his academic track record is pretty meaningless.”
            Have you taken the time to look into the academic track record of certain high achieving basketball players like Bill Russell, and Steve Nash, etc.?

          • Aug 10, 20113:42 pm
            by brgulker

            There are phenomenally talented athletes in every single draft. Invariably, a significant percentage of those phenomenally talented athletes fail to meet the lofty expectations people such as yourself set for them.

            This. 

            khandor the quote above is simply a fact. The fact you continue to dispute fact after fact after fact means that you lose credibility everywhere you post.

            Knight might become a good player. He’s certainly got talent. But so far, he hasn’t been great. He’s 19, so there’s plenty of time for him to figure it out.

            If he doesn’t, you’ll blame it on bad coaching (even though you’re touting Frank now, I guarantee this will happen). If he  does become a good player, you’ll never let anyone on the internet hear the end of it, even though everyone has already acknowledged that he could become a good player.

          • Aug 10, 20113:48 pm
            by khandor

            @ Patrick,
            re: “That post is gibberish. Seriously, anecdotal junk like the things you just rattled off are the reasons players get taken way too high. I mean, that would be like me (or David Kahn) saying that Jonny Flynn is totally a can’t miss prospect because of that time he played all those minutes in a six overtime game for Syracuse. Relying solely on highlights to evaluate players is a stupid, failed, simplistic way to do it.”
            Anecdotal junk?
            Hmmm …
            I would never say that someone like Jonny Flynn is the type of prospect I would ever recommend for a NBA team, as a future starting PG, based on how he played in a 6 OT game for Syracuse.
            There is a HUGE qualitative and substantive difference between the array of attributes which I outlined above, re: Brandon Knight’s performance to this point … on and off the court … and the way that Mr. Flynn performed in the single 6 OT game for ‘the Cuse’.

          • Aug 10, 20114:01 pm
            by khandor

            @ Ben,
            re: “khandor the quote above is simply a fact. The fact you continue to dispute fact after fact after fact means that you lose credibility everywhere you post.”
            ————————–
            Please read carefully what I write next.
            At no point would I ever try to dispute THE FACT that a certain percentage of perceived to be good athletes with thought to be good upside selected in the NBA Lottery fail to succeed every year. THIS is, in fact, a certifiable fact.
            What is NOT a certifiable FACT, however, is the PERCEPTION that Brandon Knight actually fits into this actual category, based on his list of achievements to-date.
            To put him into a “generic” category like THAT, at this point, is to fail to apply the principle of specificity and instead operate based on little more than simple conjecture.
            What I disagreed with initially was your categorization of Brandon Knight, as being of the “dime a dozen” variety. The fact is … he is not, based on his accomplishments to-date.
            If you would like to dispute my observation/claim, then, please go right ahead. I am more than willing to listen to any REAL evidence that you are willing to provide going forward.

          • Aug 10, 20114:12 pm
            by brgulker

            The fact is … he is not, based on his accomplishments to-date.

            Provide one such fact. Any time. We’re all waiting.

            I am more than willing to listen to any REAL evidence that you are willing to provide going forward.

            Brandon Knight missed lots of shots (as is evidenced by his poor FG%), took lots of bad shots (as is evidenced by any game film you’d like to select), and he turned the ball over a lot (as is evidenced by the stats and film).  

            Athletic guards who do those things are not hard to find in the NBA draft. In fact, they are filled with them year after year.

          • Aug 10, 20114:38 pm
            by khandor

            @ Ben,
            re: “If he doesn’t, you’ll blame it on bad coaching (even though you’re touting Frank now, I guarantee this will happen). If he  does become a good player, you’ll never let anyone on the internet hear the end of it, even though everyone has already acknowledged that he could become a good player.”
            ————————–
            Point 1. Lawrence Frank has already proven that he is a solid NBA head coach, during his stint with the New Jersey Nets. Nothing which he does with the Pistons will change THIS fact.
            If Lawrence Frank can go on to achieve  great things with the Pistons then he might be able to develop a reputation for himself as a legitimate elite level practicioner. Time will tell if this ever happens. IMO, however, I do NOT see the attributes which are consistent with this happening for Lawrence down-the-road. Instead, I’d suggest that Lawrence has a legitimate chance to become “The next Hubie Brown” [who was an outstanding coach in his own right and quite possibly the best TV 'basketball analyst', from an X's and O's perspective, in the history of the NBA game].
            Point 2. There’s a big qualitative difference between the following 2 statements:
            i. Everyone has already acknowledged that Brandon Knight COULD become a good player.
            ii. Everyone has said that Brandon Knight WILL become a very good player … if he is fortunate to eventually be well-coached, in the NBA.
            I see nothing wrong with the first statement, as long as someone doesn’t then say that Brandon Knight fits into the generic category of a “dime a dozen” player, since the fact is that “dime a dozen” players do not do what this young man has done to this point in his basketball career.
            I choose to make observations like the second statement, on occasion, when I see the early signs that a specific player is likely going to be much better than many other basketball observers might realize at that point. If I turn out to be wrong, then, I have no problem, whatsoever, with whatever criticism you [and others] might bring my way.
            e.g. Deron Washington is a good example of a player who I think has the ability to become a “Bruce Bowen-type” defensive player, if he’s ever given the opportunity to succeed in the NBA by a head coach who really knows he’s doing, ala Chuck Daly [Dennis Rodman], Pat Riley [Michael Cooper], Phil Jackson [Pete Myers], Gregg Popovich, etc. If, however, he is never fortunate enough to find himself in this type of situation then the chances of him ever cracking a regular rotation in the NBA are SLIM TO NONE. As such, my initial assessment of Deron Washington is still waiting to be proven, either, right or wrong. If, however, Deron Washington was to be signed by a team with a top notch head coach and then be cut without receiving any praise as a possible future player in the NBA, under slightly different roster circumstance, the FACTS would then be that my initial assessment of Deron Washington’s ability was wrong.

          • Aug 10, 20114:47 pm
            by Birdman84

            “Have you taken the time to look into the academic track record of certain high achieving basketball players like Bill Russell, and Steve Nash, etc.?”

            Have you, Khandor? Seriously, that would be really interesting to look at. Since you are, after all, someone who analyzes basketball for a living, that might be useful to post your findings. Most of us who just chime in occasionally don’t have the time.

          • Aug 10, 20114:56 pm
            by khandor

            @ Ben,
            re: players like Brandon Knight are a “dime a dozen”
            Please name the other 11 PGs taken in the history of the NBA Lottery, as true freshmen, that led their team to the NCAA Final 4 and also have an almost ideal release angle on their jump-shot?
            IIRC, Brandon Knight is the only one.
             

          • Aug 10, 20115:36 pm
            by khandor

            @ Ben,
            re: “Brandon Knight missed lots of shots (as is evidenced by his poor FG%), took lots of bad shots (as is evidenced by any game film you’d like to select), and he turned the ball over a lot (as is evidenced by the stats and film).”
            ————————–
            I am sorry to say this … most of all because Ben, you, of all people on the internet, know the actual high level of respect I have for your opinion and the way that you conduct yourself on-line [i.e. with class] … but, unfortunately, this is the type of non-supportable statistical data that gets published all too frequently, on different web sites, that then becomes “standard perception” about a specific player for those who do not take the time to look comparatively at the very statistical rankings which they are making reference to, in the first place … and, instead use a highly flawed metric [a short-hand formula which does not measure what it claims to measure] like “Pure Point Guard Rating”/http://www.hickory-high.com/?page_id=274.
            What was BK’s actual FG% last season, in comparison with other similar PGs in their first year playing in the NCAA?
            What was BK’s actual number of TOs last season, in comparison with other similar PGs in their first year playing in the NCAA?
            Where is the video evidence of the “bad” shot selection you are making reference to? [... and, please, do not cite Sebastian's Pruiti's video clips as being more than one off "anecdotals" which I have already refuted elsewhere, as not being an accurate appraisal of the actual shot quality, in the first place]
            If you examine what the individual number categories actually have to say then you should be able to see that BK is far from being properly characterized as little more than a poor shooter who turns the ball over a great deal and takes a high percentage of bad shots, relative to his peers.

          • Aug 10, 20116:17 pm
            by tarsier

            @khandor
            “re: “But from an NBA perspective, his academic track record is pretty meaningless.”Have you taken the time to look into the academic track record of certain high achieving basketball players like Bill Russell, and Steve Nash, etc.? ”
            Yeah sure there are high academic achievers and low academic achievers int he league. That was my point. How good you are at school has little to no bearing in either direction on how good you are at basketball. Pulling a few names out of your head doesn’t change that. But here’s an equal counter argument: Derrick Rose, Jeremy Lin.

          • Aug 11, 20112:45 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            “At no point would I ever try to dispute THE FACT that a certain percentage of perceived to be good athletes with thought to be good upside selected in the NBA Lottery fail to succeed every year. THIS is, in fact, a certifiable fact.

            What is NOT a certifiable FACT, however, is the PERCEPTION that Brandon Knight actually fits into this actual category, based on his list of achievements to-date.”

            It’s also a fact Knight doesn’t fit into the category of a success, either. Nearly everyone else is willing to acknowledge Knight’s NBA career could go either way.

          • Aug 11, 20112:49 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            I think Knight’s academic skills make him more likely to succeed in the NBA. They show intelligence and work ethic, two important traits in the NBA. But that doesn’t always translate from the classroom to the court. I think, and hope, it will for Knight, but that’s far from a certainty.

          • Aug 11, 20114:00 pm
            by khandor

            @ Dan,
            re: “It’s also a fact Knight doesn’t fit into the category of a success, either. Nearly everyone else is willing to acknowledge Knight’s NBA career could go either way.”
            ————————–
            Respectfully, I disagree that your claim is in fact a “fact” at all.
            If you consider the number of true freshmen PGs who have ever led their NCAA D1 team to the Final Four, and then been selected in the NBA Lottery the same season, while achieving considerable reknown, as a Top flight STUDENT-athlete with an outstanding work ethic and an almost ideal release angle on his jump-shot, etc., it might IN FACT be MOST APPROPRIATE to term what Brandon Knight has done, thus far, in his hoops career, as being a form of MAJOR SUCCESS, relative to his peers.

          • Aug 11, 20114:20 pm
            by khandor

            @ Dan,
            Secondly. IMO, it would also be completely fair, and accurate, to say with confidence that I am, in fact, very different from “almost everyone else”. If I turn out to be wrong, I will have no problem, whatsoever, either with you or anyone else for that matter subsequently holding me accountable for my perception of Brandon Knight’s ability to eventually succeed as a top flight PG in the NBA [i.e. if he is fortunate enough to receive top notch coaching].

    • Aug 11, 20111:47 pm
      by Dan Feldman

      Reply

      Gulker, by “best player available,” I did not mean the player who plays the best right now. I meant the best prospect (production times potential) available.

  • Aug 10, 201110:29 am
    by gmehl1977

    Reply

    i will go out on a limb here and say Karen Davidson should get some praise for Joe not making any bad moves the last 2 years seeming she had his hands tied. On a serious note though i think Joe will do better with less pressure and a more co-operative owner.

  • Aug 10, 201110:38 am
    by Wall-E

    Reply

    I remember a post you guys wrote about John Keuster explaining his (seemingly) un-explainable actions.  The synopsis of the post was that, while you may not have agreed with his actions, it was at least comforting that he had a plan and was sticking to it.  I look at Dumars through those same lenses.

    This is how I read the situation of the last 2-3 years:
    In the context of the ”championship” Pistons becoming old and creaky, Joe needed to begin to transition the team.  He had his roster money coming free a year before the great FA summer of 2010, so he could have been tempted to hold out for another year and then chase the “La-Dream” team.  But if YOU were a FA where would YOU go if the money was all the same:  NY, Chicago, Miami, …or Detroit?  I think it is safe to say the Pistons would probably lose that competition.  So, I beleive Joe spent that money on the most promising prospects of the FA class of ’09.  …When everyone else was selling, he was buying.  Did they make a cohesive team?  Absolutely not, and I would bet money that Dumars was aware of that fact even while he was writing the contracts.  I think Joe was betting that when the dust settles on Free Agency 2010, there would be winners and losers, …and the losers would panic.  When that happened, Joe D and the Pistons whould have some solid peices to trade.  It was a “buy low, sell high” plan that would transform the Pistons into a young, promising, cohesive team. 

    …Sadly, the plan did not turn out the way he thought.  His coaches were bad, the players he thought he could count on revolted, BG and CV both regressed, ..and, worst of all, Bill Davidson died.  Hind-sight being 20/20, it is easy to critique Joe D’s plan these days.  I may be wrong about all of this.  However, for what it is worth, I have been paying close attention during this time frame.  This is what I saw and how I interpretted it all.  And I can appreciate the thought and planning that went into his plan, …even if it didn’t work.

    • Aug 10, 201111:13 am
      by tarsier

      Reply

      The most promising player in 2009 was David Lee, hands down. The BG and CV contracts were bad but I understand that Dumars saw them as young guys just going into their primes. The Rip extension remains inexplicable, though. It was just a terrible contract given at a terrible time when Dumars had all the leverage and failed to use any of it. In the recent decline of the Pistons, that is the one move I consider absolutely inexcusable. The rest are just so bad because they all came hand in hand in such a short time span. Otherwise they could be remembered like the bad contract given to Nazr Mohammed way back when.

      • Aug 11, 20112:58 pm
        by Dan Feldman

        Reply

        Tarsier, was the Hamilton extension really seen as that bad at the time? In hindsight, I think Dumars had more leverage than he used, but I don’t remember anyone being up in arms about the extension. PistonPowered didn’t exist at the time, but not one comment on Detroit Bad Boys bashed the move, and some praised it:

        http://www.detroitbadboys.com/2008/11/3/1216351/rip-hamilton-signs-three-year

        • Aug 11, 20117:21 pm
          by tarsier

          Reply

          Im not sure about general perception but I thought it was terrible because Dumars didn’t use his leverage. Joe had a lot of time yet before he needed to extend Rip if he wanted to do so. And any reasonable person would expect that in that time, there was a chance that Rip’s ability would drop but virtually none that it would rise. Nevertheless, the extension was slightly on the rich side given Rip’s production at that point. By waiting, Joe could only have driven Rip’s price down, so if they were to come to terms then, it should have been on a contract a little below value. When those negotiations were finalized, I don’t know if the Iverson deal was on the table yet (but it had to be very close if not). But based on Dumars’ comments, he was intending to shake up the roster whether through the Iverson deal or some other route. That gave Dumars all the more reason to wait and see how the changes to the team affect the role of Hamilton.

          I term it terrible but not in the Joe Johnson deal sense of terrible. More in the Rudy Gay deal sense of terrible. I think that Gay’s signing was an awful move because Memphis could have simply waited and worst case scenario: someone else offers Gay a max deal. Then they still end up paying him a bit less because no other team can offer as much. If no one does offer Gay a really rich deal, that significantly drives down his value and maybe they can get him for more like $12M/yr. It’s was a really bad move not because at the time it seemed way too rich a contract but because by not giving that contract at that time, there was only potential for the deal to trend more in favor of the team and less in favor of the player.

          • Aug 12, 201111:50 am
            by brgulker

            Gay and Johnson at their best are so far ahead of Rip at his best that I’m not sure which contract is worse.

            Okay, the Johnson contract is worse… but he’s still more valuable than Rip.

          • Aug 12, 20111:07 pm
            by khandor

            Agree that J-Johnson’s contract is worse than R-Gay’s and of better value than Rip’s. Disagree with any contention, however, that any of the 3 extensions fit properly into the “immovable” category, since the “immovable” category is, in fact, a total misnomer in the NBA.

          • Aug 12, 20112:51 pm
            by neutes

            This article really still going on?
             
            Let’s look at some ugly contract trades:
             
            Orlando gets Arenas from Wash and Turkoglu from Pheonix and gives up Lewis, Gortat, Piertrus, and a 1st. Looking back I thought the Magic got hosed, hindsight I was wrong, they got absolutely murdered in this deal. They swapped one bad contract for two.
            Wizards trade Antawn Jamison to Cleveland for Big Z (expiring) and a 1st. Wiz blew this one out of the water. Still, the Cavs now have Jamison’s expiring deal to offer.
             
            Lesson – You need to find the most desperate team in the league with a superstar threatening to leave. New Jersey, Orlando, and New Orleans look like good targets.
             
            But man looking back at the trades the last 3 seasons – Camby trade from Denver to LAC for a 2nd rounder? What? Then the Clips sent him to Portland for scrubs. Talk about under-appreciated. Dave Berri must have blown a gasket.
             
            The Clips then traded Randolph to Memphis for Quinten Richardson. Seriously. The Clips gave away a front court of Randolph and Camby, with Kaman as a backup, for Quentin Richardson, Travis Outlaw, and Steve Blake. Where was I for that one?

          • Aug 11, 201110:35 pm
            by Patrick Hayes

            WOW! That is amazing. Seriously. You see that, commenting world? That’s how it’s done. Don’t just say, “I said this years ago and I was right!” You support it with data. Well done, sir. If the comments here allowed me to do those rec’d things or hand out Red Pandas (I think Red Pandas are a good thing, right?) that you guys give each other in the DBB comments, I’d give you all of them right now.

          • Aug 11, 201110:52 pm
            by Birdman84

            Red pandas seem to show up when someone makes a dumb argument, as far as I can tell. But thanks Patrick!

    • Aug 10, 201112:49 pm
      by khandor

      Reply

      @ Wall-E,
      Of all the comments I have yet to read on this blog, the one which you just contributed is THE single most insightful. Sincere kudos to you, sir.

      • Aug 10, 20115:45 pm
        by Laser

        Reply

        bah. i said it at the time and i’ll say it again: a smart plan would have been to use that cap space to fleece the other teams who were dumping productive, reasonably-priced players in preparation for the Summer of LeBron. he could have tested New York by signing David Lee to an offer sheet to see if they’d match, and if they passed, go around the league and pick up some solid, undervalued players.
         
        this notion that joe’s options were limited to spending that cap space on free agents or saving it for next season’s free agents is foolish and uncreative. miami was the big winner last summer, but we could have been a solid runner-up if joe was smart and thought it through. once our most appealing option in free agency was a hundred million dollars worth of the smallest and largest shooting guards on the planet, it’s time to think outside the box.

        • Aug 11, 20113:01 pm
          by Dan Feldman

          Reply

          Laser, I’m with you and advocated at the time for those trades that took bad contracts plus sweeteners. But David Lee isn’t worth his contract, and Gordon and Villanueva — especially Gordon, whose downfall has been more perplexing — looked better at the time.

          • Aug 11, 20117:25 pm
            by tarsier

            Agreed but I was also an advocate for such deals as taking on Eddy Curry or other 2011+ contracts from teams like Chicago and Miami in order to also gain sweeteners.

          • Aug 11, 20119:10 pm
            by Laser

            1) not just “bad deals plus sweeteners,” though i would JUMP that over the “bad deals with no sweeteners” that we signed BG and CV to. there were quality players available for cap relief. if joe deserved his reputation for being shrewd and finding undervalued talent, this is what he would have done.
             
            2) david lee may not be worth his contract, but he’s worth a HELL of a lot more than gordon any day of the week, and he’d be huge on this team with such a dearth of rebounding and post scoring. my hypothetical has always had us offering lee a contract similar to gordon’s.
             
            3) at no point did gordon look good on this roster. not even for ten seconds. not even on paper. this team had JUST turned the page on the iverson era, where their third guard was a shooting guard in a point guard’s body who took difficult shots and couldn’t defend. if stuckey was a point guard and/or rip wasn’t rip, i might have felt differently. but those guys were entrenched. in a draft, you take a gordonesque player if he’s the best available; that’s not how free agency works.
             
            4) i swear, there’s got to come a point when you just gotta say, “you know what, laser? we don’t always see eye to eye, but you’re right on this one.” can’t wait for that day. i’ve given you no shortage of openings.

          • Aug 12, 201111:53 am
            by brgulker

            David Lee is worth his contract. When he’s healthy, he’ll prove it again in GS.

            I have no idea why anyone with basketball knowledge with argue that Villanueva and/or Gordon looked more appealing as a FA signing than David Lee did in 2009.

            15 / 10 guys who shoot over 50% from the field don’t grow on trees.

          • Aug 12, 20111:04 pm
            by khandor

            David Lee-type players do not help a team move closer to the winning of a league championship. Facts? IIRC … Did not happen at Florida. Did not happen with the Knicks. Has not happened, thus far, with the Warriors.

          • Aug 12, 20111:59 pm
            by brgulker

            So I suppose Charles Barkley was not the type of player that would help a team move closer to an NBA championship. Or Patrick Ewing. 

            What a ridiculous argument.

          • Aug 12, 20112:49 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            In 2008-09, David Lee averaged 16.5-12.1-2.2 per 36 minutes. Villanueva averaged 21.7-8.9-2.4 per 36 minutes. Lee also played in a faster-paced system that helped inflate his stats. 

            Yes, Lee’s true shooting percentage (.590) than Villanueva’s (.529), but Lee shot much less often. He took few shots besides putbacks and and layups and dunks that were set up by his teammates. Basically, if Lee played a bigger role, his shooting percentage would’ve fallen drastically, because with the Knicks, he took only shots that he was likely to make. On the other hand, Villanueva took shots on possessions when players like Lee wouldn’t shoot. If his role shrunk, it appeared his shooting percentage would increase. Unfortunately, as we know now, Villanueva doesn’t seem like the type of player who will shoot less often.

            Plus, Lee had an even more drastic case of playing with poor rebounders than Villanueva had. Among the Knicks who played more than 25 games that season, Lee’s best-rebounding teammate was Al Harrington. Al Harrington! Lee inflated his rebounding stats by “stealing” boards from his teammates. That’s not helpful for his team.

            Plus, Lee was a restricted free agent. If the Pistons made an offer to him and the Knicks waited their full seven days then matched, Detroit might have missed on Gordon and Villanueva. Obviously, in hindsight, that would that have been nice. But at the time, it would have been a disaster. That was a thin free agent class, and the NBA had just announced the salary cap would likely go down the following summer. I shudder to think about who the Pistons would’ve landed.

            Oh, and Lee’s next contract pays him about double what Villanueva makes. Obviously, he wouldn’t have made quite that much in 2009, but he would’ve cost way more than Villanueva. That would’ve meant Detroit couldn’t afford Gordon. (Again, ignore hindsight for a moment.)

            So, all in all, at the time, I don’t think pursuing Lee would’ve been vastly superior to pursing Gordon  and Villanueva.

          • Aug 12, 20113:03 pm
            by neutes

            I hate the system argument. Lee is a better player than CV everyday of the week, and was prior to 2009 as well. I feel like other GM’s fall for that as well. David Lee helps win games. Gordon and CV help lose games. Given they both have shortcomings on defense I’m quite sure I’ll take the one that is both more efficient and a better rebounder, traits that it was clear Lee had the advantage at regardless of the system he played in.
             
            I love Dan’s comment about the hindsight though. For one we didn’t need Gordon, never have never will, and for another Lee is better than both Gordon and CV combined. So we get more for less. All this is moot because with Lee we wouldn’t have had the chance to draft Monroe. Without Gordon and CV we probably miss out on that chance as well. So if in the end Monroe, Knight, and our 2012 lottery pick happen to turn out I suppose we can thank Dumars for idiotically and completely inadvertently turning this thing around. Hell, you could even call it luck.

          • Aug 12, 20113:26 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            Neutes, was Lee worth twice as much as Villanueva, knowing what you knew in 2009? How likely were the Knicks to match? What would’ve been plan B for Detroit if they did?

          • Aug 12, 20113:53 pm
            by neutes

            Well I’m probably the wrong person to ask seeing as how I think CV should be paying the Pistons just to wear their uniform he’s aided in disgracing. If you want to argue CV is paid properly then I would say since Lee is over twice as good as CV that Lee would deserve twice as much as CV is making. I’m not sure anyone in their right mind would make the argument CV is paid accordingly, but it wouldn’t have cost $14 million per season to pry Lee away. The Knicks had big plans for the big free agent season I highly doubt they would have been willing to lock up any cap space.
             
            If by some chance the Knicks matched – let’s be real here – nobody was going after Gordon or CV, at least not quickly. The Bucks didn’t even him want him wasting cap space with his cap hold as a restricted free agent. Or maybe Dumars called up Hammond before hand and asked if he could sign CV so Hammond lifted the tag. Who knows. The Bulls already offered Gordon more than he was worth and he turned it down. I think either would have been there, unfortunately.
             
            I just don’t think Dumars was all that creative with that cap space. You don’t have to spend it to improve. He could have looked for trades. He could have saved it and kept Afflalo and Amir, who are better than Gordon and CV. So there are plenty of hindsight moves that could have or could not have been made to put us in a better position than we are currently in.

          • Aug 12, 20114:00 pm
            by brgulker

            If you don’t believe David Lee is a better basketball player than Gordon + Villanueva already, Dan, I won’t be able to convince you. The only thing he doesn’t do well is defend. 

            I’m giving him a mulligan in GS because of his disgusting injury, but I’m fully confident that when he’s healthy, he’ll be a beast again. I also completely disagree with you about 1) his ability to create shots for himself, which he is able to do and 2) that he’s more efficient because he shoots less.

            He’s equally capable to Charlie in terms of shot creation, and he’s so, so, so much better about shot selection. You’re saying he doesn’t shoot a lot like it’s a bad thing. I don’t understand that. He takes good shots, and he passes on bad shots. Wouldn’t that be exactly what you’d want Villanueva to do? 

            If you’re going to argue that NY’s system inflated his stats, it’s easy to look beyond totals and per 36 and look at rates.

            http://www.basketball-reference.com/play-index/pcm_finder.cgi?request=1&sum=0&p1=leeda02&y1=2009&p2=villach01&y2=2009

            As far as rebounding and usage, give me Lee at PF 8 days a week.  

            And for their careers, it’s still not close. Lee is way, way better than Charlie.

            http://www.basketball-reference.com/play-index/pcm_finder.cgi?request=1&sum=1&p1=leeda02&y1=2011&p2=villach01&y2=2011

            Villanueva, knowing what you knew in 2009? How likely were the Knicks to match? What would’ve been plan B for Detroit if they did?

            I would have offered Ben Gordon’s contract to Lee, and I would have front-loaded it as much as possible under CBA regulations. No way NY matches that for Lee. Everyone in the world knew their plan was to go after LBJ. David Lee could and should have been a Piston.

            As for plan B, my argument would simply be this: at least we wouldn’t have Ben Gordon and Charlie Villanueva.

            I’ll say this after looking at Shamsports, David Lee’s contract is a little pricey in the last two years. But even at that price, he’s a rare commodity, and I’d much, much, much rather have him at $15 million than either Rip or Gordon at their respective price points.

          • Aug 12, 201111:18 pm
            by khandor

            @ Ben,
            1. Charlie Villanueva is a poor quality PF who I would never choose to have on my team. 2. David Lee, as a PF, is indeed a better basketball player, compared to Charlie Villanueva. 3. Neither Charlie Villanueva, nor David Lee, however, is the type of basketball player, at the PF position, who will bring a team in the NBA substantially closer to being able to win a League Championship. 4. In your eyes, David Lee’s only weakness is his inability to defend in an adequate way? Well, I respectfully disagree with that perception of his skill-set, relative to the best PFs in the league. Winning NBA Titles is NOT like playing Rotisserie/Fantasy League Baseball. 5. You cannot seriously be comparing a player of David Lee’s ability to HOF calibre players like Charles Barkley [over-rated by most observers] and Patrick Ewing [under-rated by most observers].

          • Aug 15, 20112:26 pm
            by brgulker

            5. You cannot seriously be comparing a player of David Lee’s ability to HOF calibre players like Charles Barkley 

            You’re right. I’m not doing this, nor have I ever done this anywhere, ever, at anytime, in the history of my basketball observancy. To do so, would be categorically nonsenicalness.

          • Aug 15, 20113:42 pm
            by khandor

            @ Ben,
            Here’s what I wrote:
            ————————–

            Aug 12, 20111:04 pm
            by khandor

            David Lee-type players do not help a team move closer to the winning of a league championship. Facts? IIRC … Did not happen at Florida. Did not happen with the Knicks. Has not happened, thus far, with the Warriors.

            ————————–
            Here’s what you wrote:
            ————————–

            Aug 12, 20111:59 pm
            by brgulker

            So I suppose Charles Barkley was not the type of player that would help a team move closer to an NBA championship. Or Patrick Ewing.
            What a ridiculous argument.

            ————————–
            Others can form their own opinions on whether, or not, you were forming a comparison between the ability of David Lee and Charles Barkley, or Pat Ewing.

          • Aug 15, 20115:03 pm
            by brgulker

            I literally cannot believe how you can misunderstand what I wrote. I was not comparing the skillsets of Ewing and Barkley with Lee. Obviously not.

            I was simply pointing out that you can be a championship-caliber player and not be fortunate enough to win a championship.

            The fact that you don’t play on a good enough team to win it all does not mean that you as a player don’t have the capacity to help a team win. I can’t imagine anything being more obvious to anyone who has watched or play basketball.

            Chris Paul is a brilliant PG. He hasn’t had a team (yet). Does that mean he couldn’t contribute toward the progress of a championship? If you say yes, you have lost your marbles.

          • Aug 15, 20115:43 pm
            by khandor

            @ Ben,
            I did not say that Barkley, or Ewing, or Chris Paul cannot contribute to a team that is capable of winning a league championship.
            What I said is that adding “a David Lee-type” player is not going to move a team closer towards winning a league championship.
            [Hint: I said nothing in my original comment about Barkley or Ewing. You're the one naming these two players, and now CP3, in response to what I wrote concerning David Lee. That's called shifting goalposts ... unless, of course, you really do want to associate the ability of these 3 other players with that of David Lee. Which is the reason I asked you my original question. Is this REALLY what you are trying to do, in this instance? ,,, because I don't it is.]

          • Aug 16, 20119:54 am
            by brgulker

            The point of the Ewing/Barkley analogy was simply to say that lots of really good players – even all-time greats at their position – don’t win NBA championships, and that failing to win an NBA championship doesn’t mean that said players are not / were not capable of propelling a team toward the goal of winning an NBA championship.

            Malone/Stockton are probably even a better example of this. They were brilliant players. But Jordan / Pippen were better.

            David Lee is not as valuable as those players, sure, but to cite his team’s inability to win a championship in college or thus far in the pros doesn’t say anything about his value toward propelling a team toward success (or failure).

            If you don’t believe that was my point, well, honestly, I don’t really care. That’s what I intended to do. I’m not going to keep debating with you what my intentions were. Take it or leave it.

          • Aug 16, 201112:35 pm
            by khandor

            @ Ben,
            re: “David Lee is not as valuable as those players, sure, but to cite his team’s inability to win a championship in college or thus far in the pros doesn’t say anything about his value toward propelling a team toward success (or failure).
            If you don’t believe that was my point, well, honestly, I don’t really care. That’s what I intended to do. I’m not going to keep debating with you what my intentions were. Take it or leave it.”
            ————————–
            1. Now we’re finally getting somewhere in this specific discussion. The reason for this is that stopped talking about other players who David Lee does NOT compare well to and, instead, have begun to focus properly on, either: i. David Lee, himself; or ii. Players who David Lee does compare well with [e.g. unlike Misters Barkley, Ewing and Paul].
            2. IMO, this is IN FACT what you were trying to get at with your original comment but the way that you tried to do it … by bring other, really non-comparable players into the discussion, was simply not sound.
            3. If you believe that David Lee, and other players like him, are capable of bring the teams which they play for closer to eventually winning a league championship, then, that is all you REALLY needed to say, in the first place.
            Even if I disagree with this observation, on your part, I all would have said was something along the lines of this: “a. I don’t agree with your perception about players like David Lee ever being able to bring the teams they play for closer to winning a league championship … but you are certainly entitled to think this way, if you wish.” b. “Please point out examples of what you consider to be ‘David Lee-like players’ that have accomplished this, IYO.” Then, if you were able to do this, and I was in agreement with your choices then I simply would have acknowledged that would you said may well be the case. OTOH, however, if you were, either: i. Unable to give examples of the other David Lee-like players who you feel fit properly into this category, or ii. Gave examples of other David Lee-like players who I happen to disagree with – i.e. as not really being very David Lee-like, in the first place – then … that is simply what I would have said, my friend. Now, the fact is … YOU can either choose to believe what I am saying in this instance, or not. The choice is really up to you.
            2. IMO, players like David Lee … i.e. Bigs with good offensively oriented “stats/metrics” according to PER/WP/APM/etc., BUT WITHOUT A SIGNATURE GO-TO MOVE THAT THEY CAN SCORE WITH CONSISTENTLY IN A 1-v-1 MATCH-UP, do not REALLY ever bring a team closer to WINNING THE LEAGUE CHAMPIONSHIP, when THEY, THEMSELVES, ALSO HAPPEN TO BE RELATIVE POOR DEFENSIVE PLAYERS.
            Now, if you happen to disagree with my perception of David Lee, and other David Lee-like players, then, by all means, go ahead and prove that my perception is wrong.
            PS. IMO, that is how a REAL on-line discussion SHOULD work, my friend … at least, between individuals who actually respect what each other has to say about a specific subject of interest to them both.

    • Aug 11, 20112:53 pm
      by Dan Feldman

      Reply

      Wall-E, I mostly agree. One point to augment your comment: in 2009, nearly everyone expected the salary cap to shrink in 2010. It appeared Dumars had to use or lose that cap room.

      • Aug 11, 20119:18 pm
        by Laser

        Reply

        i wish i had somebody to make excuses for me about absolutely everything i ever did wrong. and then when i mess up so badly it’s literally undeniable, that somebody would somehow make it look like some combination of bad luck and other people’s actions that were the REAL problem, and i would have been just fine if i’d been left to utterly destroy a professional basketball team unimpeded.
         
        i hope joe appreciates what you do for him. i really do.
         
        (PS: whether or not you foresee the cap shrinking, when you have roughly $36 million dollars (!!!) about to come off the books before the trade deadline, your options are virtually limitless. i won’t list them here, because i’m sick of doing it, but you know what they are. dumars would have had a very hard time doing any worse than he did. so let’s dispense with this “spend it/lose it/save it” mentality. you know more about cap space than that, even if these plebians don’t.)

  • Aug 10, 201111:23 am
    by Mike Payne

    Reply

    Best GM Evar.

    • Aug 10, 201111:25 am
      by Patrick Hayes

      Reply

      I’m a little disappointed it took you 18 comments to get into this. As soon as I read Dan’s post, I immediately thought, ‘Mike Payne/Ben Gulker/Laser bait.’

      • Aug 10, 201111:47 am
        by brgulker

        Reply

        Yes! I am now in the same category as MFMP in the Pistons blogosphere.

        Someday, I hope to be compared to Patrick Hayes :P

        • Aug 10, 20118:55 pm
          by Patrick Hayes

          Reply

          Well, in fairness, I think MFMP is in his own strange category. There’s no one quite like him out there. Class by himself.

      • Aug 10, 20112:45 pm
        by tarsier

        Reply

        Man, maybe I should step up my comments on how disappointed I’ve been with Dumars so I can join this elite company. :)

        • Aug 10, 20115:48 pm
          by Laser

          Reply

          get ranting, tarsler.
           
          @hayes: total laser bait. haha.

        • Aug 10, 20119:00 pm
          by Patrick Hayes

          Reply

          @tarsier:

          You’re in. Honestly, the three I mentioned are all pretty different dudes who happen to be united by their shared loathing of Dumars’ methods of player evaluation. Plenty of ways to join that group — talk about wins produce or make fun of my webcam videos or write thousands of words in the comments section without ever using one capital letter … all good methods employed by those three gents. They are the best of the best when it comes to smart and creative commenter Joe Dumars hate, but I think you have what it takes to get there.

          • Aug 10, 201111:46 pm
            by Laser

            correction: i don’t hate joe dumars, i just have no faith in him. he inherited a garbage team, made some extremely good moves. had some luck along the way, but he did put together a reasonably-priced contender that lasted half a decade and won a championship. but right now the team is in worse shape than the team he inherited in the first place. that should never happen. and everyone wants to make excuses for him and act like he didn’t smash this thing all to bits. i just think he’s done plenty to toss away the reputation he’d earned by 2008, and i’ll believe he deserves to be GM when he starts proving it. but this “In Joe We Trust” flag-waving mentality has to end.

          • Aug 11, 20118:36 am
            by tarsier

            I was half joking honestly. But I would add that I don’t hate Dumars. I just don’t know what to think of him. Just as he deserves blame for getting stuck with the bad roster he made, he deserves credit for the fact that that roster was so shocking. He started with a bad team and now has a bad team. In the middle, he was really good. The only thing that continues to upset me is that he doesn’t appear to have a real game plan for getting the Pistons back to contention. A strategy that fails is not great but ok. A lack of one altogether would make him earn an axe. But of course, it is hard for us fans to see what transpires in GMs’ minds.

          • Aug 11, 20113:06 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            Laser, if you don’t hate Dumars, you need to tone down the rhetoric. You’re showing the opposite.

          • Aug 11, 20119:48 pm
            by Laser

            @feldman: what rhetoric? that he’s been a complete disaster lately with that reverse-midas touch of his, hasn’t made a good transaction in six full years, that i have no faith in him and consider him to be smug and stubborn? i have no idea why i’d tone down any of that. at least i’m judging him on performance, instead of giving him the benefit of the doubt every single chance i get. his mother doesn’t see him with glasses as rose-colored as yours.

          • Aug 11, 201110:13 pm
            by Patrick Hayes

            @Laser:

            “Hasn’t made a good transaction in six full years.”

            Jerebko? Monroe? Stuckey? Hell, even Maxiell was a good draft pick before he signed his extension and became a dog. And even guys who didn’t end up panning out here — Afflalo, Johnson — were good transactions who he acquired.

            Therein lies the problem. It would be one thing if you were fairly critiquing him based on his performance. There are smart guys who actually do a superior job of that — Ben Gulker and Mike Payne, to name a couple. It’s possible to do. Hell, even Ben, who has offered intelligent critiques of Dumars even when the team was still winning and it wasn’t in vogue to complain about Dumars, understands that there is some value the guy brings to the job — Dumars carries major clout among agents and players, is perceived as honest and fair, etc. Those things are assets to the organization.

            You, on the other hand, only scrutinize the missteps, you discount things that were good transactions, as if those don’t count (“Anyone would’ve drafted Monroe harf harf harf”) and you don’t look at things with any kind of context — his collective body of work vs. the collective body of work of every GM in the league. I assure you, nearly all of them have a mixed bag of great moves and stupid ones. But most of them don’t have a ring and playoff appearances in three quarters of the seasons they’ve been on the job.

            It’s obvious that Dan believes Dumars deserves a shot to try and fix this team. I think he’s always been transparent about that. But to act like he’s on some crusade to pretend like Dumars has never made a mistake, that’s just dishonest. The fourth damn line of this post says, “That doesn’t change the fact that Dumars got the Pistons into this mess, and it doesn’t change the fact that Dumars hasn’t made the Pistons relevant again yet.”

            If you’re under the illusion that you, somehow, are the one bringing truths down here, you’re wrong. As I’ve said, I certainly don’t have much of an issue with criticism of Dumars’ performance, even if I don’t think the dude has done anything that should cost him his job yet. Losing games ultimately falls on the GM and he has to own that, and the consequences will be greater should it continue. I’ll also admit that occasionally, I find your rants funny. Yes, there are some folks out there who shall remain nameless (but Feldman is certainly not one of them) who fail to acknowledge any culpability on the part of Dumars for the current state of the Pistons. Those people are annoying. But equally annoying are people who say things like he “hasn’t made a good transaction in six full years.” That’s just as blind as the “Dumars has done nothing wrong everz” crowd.

            You are relying on hyperbole and vitriol. Yes, sometimes you make sound arguments. It’s obvious by how you write that you’re not a dope, that you’re passionate and that you think about things. But to act as if you’re some arbiter of fairness while Feldman is out their happily ignoring shortcomings, well, that’s just absurd.

          • Aug 12, 201111:58 am
            by brgulker

            In terms of finding value outside the lottery, I think Dumars is probably the best in the business. The only other franchise that might be better is San Antonio (and I’m just not sure where to give credit for that).

            Afflalo, Amir, Delfino, Jerebko, Stuckey — all of those guys are at minimum career rotation guys.

            Yeah, he’s had some whiffs (passing on Blair twice), but everyone does late in the draft.

            Dumars is also very good at finding productive veterans on the cheap.

            Where Dumars has botched it, and at times horribly, is on his home run swings. He hasn’t drafted well in the lottery, he’s traded his best players for really bad players, and he’s made atrocious signings above the MLE.

            It’s not that I think Dumars doesn’t understand what makes a team win. I think he just values things disproportionately (i.e., valuing a scorer like Gordon over a rebounding hustle guy like Lee). I think he knows you need both, but he doesn’t understand the respective values in terms of dollars and cents.

          • Aug 12, 201112:11 pm
            by Patrick Hayes

            @Ben:

            I agree with everything you said 100 percent.

            I would also add, I think he bought into that whole “find guys with something to prove” meme too much.

            Everyone always wrote about Billups, Hamilton, both Wallaces, McDyess being given up on by other franchises or not values and that supposedly motivated them when they got their shot in Detroit. Maybe there’s something to that. But those guys were all really good too.

            I think Dumars assumed the same thing would happen with Gordon and Villanueva — Gordon never got the contract he wanted from Chicago, Villanueva was given up on by two straight crappy teams. To guys like Billups, for example, those things would motivate him. I think there was an element of “these are two more guys with something to prove” in those signings, and from that standpoint, Dumars probably thought they’d fit in the culture here when in reality, no two players could be further from the Wallaces/Billups/McDyess mold when it comes to a combination of talent, toughness and basketball intelligence than Gordon and Villanueva.

            Hopefully Dumars learned that not every player who is given up on by other organizations is given up on prematurely.

          • Aug 12, 20111:00 pm
            by khandor

            @ Ben,
            1. Agree that Dumars understands both types of players are needed for a team to be able to compete for and eventually win a league championship. 2. Disagree that Dumars does not understand correctly which player type is actually MORE important to the success of a championship-winning calibre team, since Joe seems to understand quite well that the Gordon-type is eminently MORE important than the Lee-type, even though countless other basketball observers ail to recognize this distinction accurately.

          • Aug 12, 20112:00 pm
            by brgulker

            Ben Gordon has never come even remotely close to winning an NBA championship. Never even remotely close. 

            Now, his team is actually much better out without him. Of the players employed by Chicago pre-Derrick Rose, he was the most easily replaceable. You can always find guys to jack up shots, turn the ball over, and suck at defense!

          • Aug 12, 20112:31 pm
            by Laser

            @hayes: if feldman is allowed to assert that passing on an offer is not a “move,” i’m allowed to assert that drafting a player is not a “move” either. everyone gets draft picks, some pan out, some don’t. as for joe, i consider him to be a perfectly average drafter. i don’t give him a shred of credit for picking guys like monroe or knight, and i don’t give him a shred of blame for picking darko, because i believe basically any other GMs makes those same three picks. he made a great pick with jerebko, and he’s missed other times. plus, his history of what he does with the good picks he makes is crazy spotty. afflalo was one of the best value picks in recent memory, and he looked like a winner the whole way, and he was given away for a firm, wet handshake. i think giving joe a pass on his drafting resume is more than fair.
             
            as for joe’s “clout” and how valuable it is, good for him. i get that. nobody would say a bad word about him if he raped their grandmothers. but let’s just see how long this lasts. heck, at this rate, his reputation will soon be the only asset he’s got that actually matters. as messed up as that is.
             
            as for me being fair, i give the man credit for a championship and a half decade of a reasonably-priced contention. all of that stuff is very, very nice. kudos for that, joe. honestly. but i don’t get to look at a ring every day; all i’ve got are fond memories of the happiness this team brought me. so happens i’ve also got no shortage of memories where i was screaming at the tv and turning games off and having a few hundred days of my life made that much worse. my problem is that nobody cares about that stuff, because somehow what joe did five years ago is the only thing that matters. i look at the body of work and appreciate what he did here. but it’s impossible for me to ignore that joe took an elite NBA team and turned it to complete shit in the blink of an eye. we’re looking at one of the darkest futures in the league. if joe took over the job in 2006, there wouldn’t be a soul defending the guy. but all anyone seems to focus on is the fact that he built a winner once, so he can do it again. it’s selective memory. i’ll believe joe can get the job done WHEN HE GETS THE JOB DONE.
             
            i’m not out to crucify the guy, but i always try to highlight the opposite side when i think something or someone is getting too much or too little credit. i try to bring it back to the middle when i can, and sometimes that means pulling a little harder in that opposite direction when i find it necessary or amusing. sometimes the responses are a little more vitriolic than others, but anything i wrote here is in direct response to the visceral distaste i have for this article. one passing sentence about how joe’s made mistakes doesn’t make up for the slant of the article. it’s just a sensationalist piece that did its job in getting people talking. but just as you think i’d love to set joe on fire and never see his stupid face again, and thus will never take my thoughts on him seriously, that’s how i feel about feldman and the entire lot of dumars apologists.
             
            how far must he fall before today matters more than 2004?

          • Aug 12, 20112:58 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            Gulker, I don’t necessarily agree Dumars has proven himself as a failure in his home-run swings. How many has he really made? I’d argue not enough to have a reliable sample. Going for the homer has never really been Dumars’ style, even if he’s done it on occasion.

            Honestly, signing Gordon, drafting Greg Monroe, drafting Rodney White and drafting Brandon Knight are the only moves that I think qualify. That makes him one for three with a TBD. Not good, but not enough to establish a pattern, in my opinion.

            I wouldn’t count the Billups trade as going for a home run, because Iverson’s expiring contract gave him Dumars options. 

            I wouldn’t count Villanueva, because he barely makes more than the league’s average salary.

            And I wouldn’t count drafting Mateen Cleaves, because he was the last pick in the lottery, a rather arbitrary line. Does Dumars blow that pick but do better with Austin Daye and Rodney Stuckey because they were chosen one pick later and on the other side of that line?

          • Aug 12, 20113:10 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            Laser, do you honestly believe, if the Pistons had the sixth pick in the 2010 draft and Dumars drafted Monroe, you’d give him credit for the pick?

          • Aug 12, 201111:36 pm
            by khandor

            @ Ben,
            This reply comment, my friend, is an example of YOU attempting to move the goalposts. Something which you do not appreciate having to deal with when you perceive [rightly or wrongly] that it’s being done to you.
            1. I did not say that Ben Gordon has ever come close to winning a NBA championship. I said that anyone who thinks that the skill-set which Ben Gordon possesses is incapable of being used at the PG position, in a way which is comparable with the individual games of players like BJ Armstrong, Craig Hodges, John Paxson and Steve Kerr, is making a mistake, IMO, and that having this “type” of player in your rotation, when your team has a superstar like Michael Jordan [similar but not necessarily equal to ... because who really is, as a dominant wing player], and head coach like PJ, with a GM like JK, operating in an offensive system like the Triangle, is more important than adding a “David Lee-type” player at the PF position.
            2. When you’re starting PG is a player with the attributes of Derrick Rose it makes more sense to use a lesser talented player like Kyle Korver [6-7, 210] at the OG position than it does to give heavy minutes to a Combo Guard like Ben Gordon [6-2, 200] at, either, the PG [as a back-up] or OG [as a starter] position.

          • Aug 15, 20112:31 pm
            by brgulker

            Your argument is that BG could play some PG in a triangle system. I don’t have a problem with that in and of itself.

            What makes the argument untenable, however, is that the triangle is predicated upon having certain types of go-to players that the Pistons do not have and are not at all likely to have.

            The triangle works when you have players like Jordan, Kobe, and Gasol who handle the ball and through whom the offense flows. When you have those go-to players, a complementary player like Gordon makes some sense for you, sure. Who would disagree with that?

            But we do not have, nor will we have, those players anytime soon, barring a miracle KG for nothing trade that happened to Boston.  And therefore, we will no be running the triangle. As Rambis made crystal clear, you can’t run the triangle if you don’t have the personnel for it. 

            So no, I’m not moving the goal posts at all. I’m saying that with our current personnel and system, BG at point makes absolutely no sense. It would be the worst option at backup PG of the available options.

            You’re saying that if the situation were completely different, BG could play backup PG, to which I say, well, sure, but why bother with improbably hypotheticals?

          • Aug 15, 20113:56 pm
            by khandor

            @ Ben,
            I gave ONE example of a system in which Ben Gordon could play effectively as a PG … which is all I needed to give, considering the claim that you made.
            Although the Pistons may not have had anything close to an ideal roster for the Triangle Offense to “work like a well-oiled machine,” there is nothing inherently incongruent with a 1st and 2nd Unit that looks like this:
            1st Unit: PG/Stuckey, OG/Hamilton, SF/Prince, PF/Wallace and C/Monroe
            2nd Unit: PG-OG/Gordon, SF/Daye [or McGrady] and PF-C/Wilcox [or Villanueve, or Maxiell]
            and a team that may have been able to win at least 41 games last season in Detroit, if they shared the ball properly and functioned as an actual TEAM … using a viable NBA-type rotation.

    • Aug 10, 201111:29 am
      by Birdman84

      Reply

      I was wondering when you’d show up.

  • Aug 10, 201111:34 am
    by Jason

    Reply

    To put it in another perspective.  Lets say Kuester would of been a better coach. We wouldn’t have Monroe, Knight and I think Daye.   I think we lucked out in way. 

    Regarding the bad before the good. 

    Gordon/Charlie – I am not backing down yet with them. I will give both one more year.

    Afflalo – Sucks he is gone but remember what we had in front of him at the time of the trade. But yes I would like to still have him on the team

    Iverson – Billups for cap space makes sense.  Iverson was a huge disappointment though. But a thing to remember is Phil Jackson said in an interview that he thought the Pistons with Iverson worried him the most.  Personally Coach Curry sucked so bad we never got to see what could of been.

    Kuester was a bad hire. And a three year contract was bad as well.

    • Aug 10, 20111:10 pm
      by khandor

      Reply

      @ Jason,
      re: “Iverson – Billups for cap space makes sense.  Iverson was a huge disappointment though. But a thing to remember is Phil Jackson said in an interview that he thought the Pistons with Iverson worried him the most.  Personally Coach Curry sucked so bad we never got to see what could of been.”
      Good point, except that … What someone like Phil Jackson [over-rated?] thinks only matters to those [few?] individuals who happen to believe that some elite level basketball coaches [a rare breed, indeed] actually have an accurate understanding of what the game of basketball is REALLY about. And those [few?] individuals don’t really matter much at all, in comparison with the reams and reams of “objective, numerical-based data” now available which indicates that most elite level coaches don’t REALLy understand how the game actually works at all. :-), :-), :-)

      • Aug 10, 20111:39 pm
        by Jason

        Reply

        Not sure I am getting your point. 

        I was trying to  back my opinion up with someone who I would consider an expert. 

        • Aug 10, 20112:32 pm
          by khandor

          Reply

          @ Jason,
          In this instance, I agree completely with your original comment. [For the sake of further clarity ... Know that my tongue was firmly planted in my cheek, so-to-speak, when I wrote my comment above, re: those fail value what someone like Phil Jackson actually thinks about how the game of basketball works, relative to the new-age stat-hounds]

          • Aug 11, 20113:12 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            The Mavericks, who relied heavily on statistics, beat Phil Jackson’s Lakers this year. Hmmm.

          • Aug 11, 20113:20 pm
            by Jason

            Are you trying to back statistics and a reason the Mavericks won the championship?

          • Aug 11, 20114:27 pm
            by khandor

            @ Dan,
            Are you REALLY trying to suggest that the REASON Dallas was able to beat the Lakers in the playoffs this year was because of the Mavericks’ use of “statistics”?
            If not, then, please explain the point of your comment.

          • Aug 11, 20114:41 pm
            by Patrick Hayes

            @khandor:

            The Mavs use advanced stats extensively. Seriously man, read things. They’re out there.

            Carlisle’s (now former) lead assistant, Dwayne Casey, is a stats guy. Cuban has employed advanced stats guy Wayne Winston for years. Cuban talked about Rick Carlisle using advanced stats to break down not only the Mavs’ best lineup combinations, but also opposing teams’ worst lineup combinations. Cuban and Donnie Nelson I believe both spoke at the Sloan Sports Analytic Conference. Former Mavs assistant Del Harris is one of the earliest known coaches to use the points per possession stat.

            Someone who works with NBA level athletes and executives as you frequently claim should know that advanced stats are used by many of the best front offices in basketball right now, including by the Mavs. It doesn’t mean they are the sole reason the Mavs win, but they clearly used them to decide where their best advantages against the Lakers and Heat were.

            Seriously, if you or anyone is positioning yourself as an ‘anti-stat’ person, you’re positioning yourself to look dumb. Not only are teams using the stats, but the individual players are as well. Chris Bosh, for example, was given numbers showing he was much less productive on one side of the court, so he stopped setting up on that side and his numbers improved. Scouting is valuable. Numbers and stats enhance scouting. You, Jason and a couple others who mount the lame ass criticisms of statistical analysis in the comments here are wrong. Sports are changing, advanced measures are being proven and accepted. You can either adapt, learn about them and embrace the change, or you can remain denialists like the folks who thought the world is flat. If you really do work in the league or work with the high level athletes you say and you are not learning about the best numbers, measures and tools out there, you are going to become obsolete in whatever your mysterious job is.

          • Aug 12, 201112:23 am
            by khandor

            @ Dan,
            Read things? LOL, :-)
            1. Yes, given what I’ve told you, thus far, of my personal background, it would be the right thing for you to assume that I know full well that Dallas is, indeed, one of the many teams in the NBA today that uses so-called “Advanced Stats” as part of their basketball decision-making process.
            The question I asked you, however, was something else:
            [Not whether you think the Mavs are one of the teams that use statistics in today's NBA ... but, instead]
            Are you REALLY trying to suggest that THE reason Dallas beat the Lakers in this year’s playoffs is BECAUSE of the Mavs’ use of statistics?
            See … your point would actually make [more?] sense, if Dallas was the ONLY team in the league today that was using stats on a regular basis … and then they became the team to vanquish the previously unconquerable LA Lakers.
            The fact is, however … this is NOT the case at all. Is it? [... since there are now a whole swack of teams using statistics, in one form of another, that WERE UNABLE TO BEAT the Lakers, both, this season, and either of the previous 2 campaigns, including the Boston Celtics, Orlando Magic, and the Houston Rockets [etc.].
            The fact is … now that the use of stats is no longer an exclusive thing in the NBA environment, their use by any one specific team is never THE reason one beats another. [i.e. "insider trading", per se, isn't really "insider trading", at all, if the majority [or at least a significant minority, if not actually everyone] … both inside and outside of a specific environment … is using it to make their investment decisions, in one form or another of the exact same information.]
            2. Trust that I know the ins and outs of how statistics actually work.
            3. Know that I have never, ever said that “the right use of valid statistics is not a worthwhile endeavour” on the part of those attempting to improve their understanding of the game.
            4. Conversely, know that I have, in fact, said, “Statistics are precisely like every other form of WEAPONRY [invented by mankind]. In the hands of the right person [i.e. well-trained and with a high degree of skill], and for the right reason[s], their proper use CAN be a highly effective TOOL for bringing about a very specific result, the good or bad of which is, ultimately, decided [in large part] by the ‘winner’ of a particular confrontation. In the hands of the WRONG person, OTOH …”
            5. A “cult” is not something which I have any desire to join.
            6. My preference is to examine pertinent, legitimate, evidence for myself, based upon a lifetime of personal study and an analytical approach to the game of Life [in general] and Sport [specifically].
            7. When something makes sense, then, it’s important to recognize that it actually makes sense. [e.g. In today's society, we are ALL members of only one Human Race.]
            8. However, if/when something doesn’t in fact make sense, then, it’s equally … if not even MORE … important to recognize that is is actually nonsensical, and does not do what others say it does. [e.g. In today's society, the concept of either, a "white" or a "black" race.]
            9. Adaptation is a good thing, and something which I heartily endorse.
            10. Be careful, however, what you choose to worship … for THAT is, most assuredly, precisely what you, too, will become, both, for good and for bad.

          • Aug 12, 201112:07 pm
            by brgulker

            2. Trust that I know the ins and outs of how statistics actually work.

            How does Wins Produced work? From what is it derived? And how is it derived?  What does it claim to say about players? Coaches?

            Based on your long commenting history on these topics, I would argue that you don’t have the foggiest idea about how WP works and what it claims to say (and not say).

          • Aug 12, 20111:46 pm
            by khandor

            @ Ben,
            This is where you are completely incorrect, my friend. THE SIMPLE FACT IS: I agree with MUCH of what a useful metric like “Wins Produced” [etc.] has to contribute towards the development of a more accurate understanding of the relative “value” of individual basketball players … despite your current belief that I don’t agree with it at all. Where David Berri’s analysis falls short, however, are the areas in which he has drawn the incorrect conclusions based, in part, on a still-flawed understanding of what really produces championship-level performance for specific NBA teams vs what does not. e.g. Berri’s ‘research’ says that most coaches do not make an appreciable ‘positive’ difference in the performance of their players. This fact I happen to agree with. Please be sure to read that previous sentence carefully. The extrapolated conclusion, however, which Berri then attempts to assert is that, therefore, finding the right coach for you team’s collection of players is a waste of available resources that would be better allocated to another aspect of your team which is more important as far as winning regular season games is concerned. The fact is, however, that the polar opposite is in fact true, when it comes to being able to win a League Championship. Just because MOST coaches are insignificant contributors to the success or failure of their players’ performance, the fact is that getting the ‘right coach’ for your team is a WAY MORE important factor towards the eventual winning of a league championship than is getting a David Lee-type [for example], good value contract on your roster, as one of 15. In fact, every great fit authentic elite level head coach is 100% capable of identifying and then drawing in to their team a BETTER version of the generic David Lee-type player, who can actually play first-class TEAM DEFENSE, compared to: A. The “average” coach, and/or B. The mere presence of a “David Lee-type” player on a given team’s existing roster. The major problem with any specific WEAPONRY involved in a particular confrontation is not related to its mere existence, in the first place; but, rather, how that specific WEAPONRY is then attempted to be used [Hint: either, rightly, or wrongly] by the specific combatants/http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rW_XMk1_kU4, given their respective level of training and their actual skill in its use.

          • Aug 12, 20111:58 pm
            by brgulker

            You didn’t respond to any part of any of my questions.

            And FWIW, you’ve fundamentally misunderstood Berri on coaching.

          • Aug 12, 20113:07 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            Ben, can you give a brief synopsis of how you understand what Berri says about coaches? I think Khandor made a great point.

          • Aug 12, 20114:06 pm
            by brgulker

            1) Very few coaches are able to significantly impact the statistical production of their players. Phil Jackson is the best at this. 

            2) From that statistical perspective, there is very little differentiation among NBA coaches. Most coaches don’t impact statistical production much, if at all, and some actually impact it negatively.

            3) For those reasons, the value of coaching is often overstated.

            4) The most important thing that coaches do is decide on the rotation. They control which players play.  

            5) Having superstar players is more important to winning a championship than coaching. LBJ can make Mike Woodson look like great, e.g.,

            I’m not claiming to understand what khandor is saying here,

            The extrapolated conclusion, however, which Berri then attempts to assert is that, therefore, finding the right coach for you team’s collection of players is a waste of available resources that would be better allocated to another aspect of your team which is more important as far as winning regular season games is concerned. The fact is, however, that the polar opposite is in fact true, when it comes to being able to win a League Championship.

            But if I am reading it right, Berri doesn’t say this.

          • Aug 12, 201111:52 pm
            by khandor

            @ Ben,
            re: “3) For those reasons, the value of coaching is often overstated.”
            ————————–
            Because Phil Jackson is the most effective of a fairly rare breed of coach … differentiated from the average mut … then, it is pure poppy-cock to assert that “the value of coaching is often over-stated.”
            re: “4) The most important thing that coaches do is decide on the rotation. They control which players play.”
            ————————–
            Counsel for the Defendant will now rest, Your Honour. :-)

          • Aug 12, 201111:54 pm
            by khandor

            Thank you, Dan.

      • Aug 10, 20112:28 pm
        by Birdman84

        Reply

        “indicates that most elite level coaches don’t REALLy understand how the game actually works at all”

        I’ll feed the obvious trolling. It certainly seems that, although Jackson is a great coach, he isn’t infallible. He was wrong to think that the Iverson trade would make the Pistons a better team. That obviously didn’t happen. Many people who looked more at Iverson’s statistical production at the time disagreed wtih Jackson’s assessment.

        Perhaps a balanced approach of applicable statistics, experience scouting, and expert opinion would produce the best analysis. :-)

        • Aug 10, 20112:41 pm
          by khandor

          Reply

          Actually Phil Jackson was NOT wrong to think that the Iverson-Billups trade would have made the Pistons a more feared opponent in the Playoffs for the Lakers should the 2 teams have met that year. IMO, what Phil Jackson was wrong about was whether, or not, Michael Curry was a good enough head coach, at the time, to be able to take advantage of the resources which that group of Pistons actually had in their line-up, given MC’s relative inexperience as a leader.

          • Aug 10, 20113:23 pm
            by Birdman84

            Khandor, Phil Jackson thought the Pistons would improve. They did not. He was wrong. That’s OK, everyone (even experts, even statistical projections) is wrong sometimes. No one’s perfect.

            There were two major changes in the Pistons for the 08-09 season: Flip Saunders was replaced by Michael Curry and Chauncey Billups was replaced by Allen Iverson. I agree with you that Curry was a downgrade from Saunders. I believe that Iverson was a downgrade from Billups. If you concur with Phil Jackson that Iverson was an improvement, then you must explain why the 08-09 Pistons won 20 fewer games purely from the downgrade in coaches and despite an upgrade in personnel. It is far more likely that Curry and Iverson were combined downgrades.

    • Aug 11, 20113:16 pm
      by Dan Feldman

      Reply

      Jason, what makes you think Gordon and Villanueva can rebound? I was willing to give them a break for 2009-10, but without a good reason to believe differently, I think when you play a certain way for two years, that’s almost certainly what you are — especially at their age.

      • Aug 11, 20114:05 pm
        by Jason

        Reply

        Come on Dan.  Nothing changed around them the second year.  Hamilton was still in the way. Kuester was still the bad coach he is.  Inconsistent minutes for both.  Sale of team.  Dumars couldnt make moves. Stuckey was distributing the ball like he should. 

        Can you tell me one thing that changed from year 1 that should of changed things?

        I am not sure Gordon and V are old yet Dan.  Lets be real

        • Aug 11, 20115:18 pm
          by Dan Feldman

          Reply

          In year two, Gordon was healthy. Villanueva had just put in a summer of working out all the time with Arnie Kander.

          I get that there were obstacles that could’ve hindered both players last year that might not be in the way this year. But neither guy was even close to living up to his contract. At a certain point, it’s about what they can do in the face of challenges, not giving them a free pass because of some minor issues. To me, they crossed that line last season.

          • Aug 11, 201110:01 pm
            by Laser

            ben gordon was constitutionally incapable of earning his contract here and will continue to do so as long as he’s sharing minutes and shots with rip and stuckey. playing behind them doesn’t help, but he didn’t do any better as a starter. take both of those guys out of the picture (no easy task) and if things go absurdly well, he may perform.
             
            charlie has no excuse. no reason he shouldn’t be able to earn that contract. to be fair, a lot of pistons fans who were more familiar with his game lit up the internet with warnings about him, and they’ve proven to be right thus far, but he should honestly be ashamed of himself. and that’s not hyperbole.
             
            gordon’s only mistake was trading his reputation and some as-yet-undetermined number of his peak years for 58 million dollars or so.

          • Aug 12, 201112:48 am
            by khandor

            @ Laser,
            Ben Gordon’s main problem with the Pistons, thus far, has not been his sharing of both shots and PT with Stuckey and Rip. In this regard, Ben Gordon’s main problem has been his sharing of shots and minutes with WILL BYNUM, as the part-time “understudy” for BOTH Stuckey AND Hamilton. [At least, in part, this is also what has been responsible for stunting the expected growth in Austin Daye's individual game, since the shared role of Gordon AND Bynum has at times required that Rip was bumped up to the SF position, as well.] PS. Regardless how good Will Bynum actually is … and, FWIW, know that I think he is a good back-up calibre PG in the NBA … what a top flight head coach would/should have done each of the last 2 seqsons, with Stuckey, Hamilton and Gordon, Prince, Daye and McGrady [last year] on the roster is sit his rear end on the bench for the benefit of the other players, each of whom is a better basketball player than Will Bynum. As such, Ben Gordon’s main problem with the Pistons … is now a recently hired assistant coach with the LA Lakers. If Lawrence Frank merely does for the Pistons what he did in his first few years with the Nets[i.e. implement a legitimate NBA-style rotation], then, Ben Gordon should be able to perform significantly better than he has either of the last 2 seasons.

          • Aug 12, 20119:33 am
            by Jason

            Well we will see this year won’t we.  I think to play to your potential you need consistency.  There was absololutely no consistency last year with Kuester’s lineups at all.  I do think you watch games but I think I missed a few and was just so confused with the rotations every night. And another this is when I watched these players walk to the bench when they are taken out.  They were more confused than I was.

          • Aug 12, 20111:58 pm
            by khandor

            @ Jason,
            re: “I do think you watch games …”
            ———————
            Sincere, thanks for this comment. I will now put you into the same category as others who also communicate with me on a regular basis that have either played and/or coached and/or scouted, etc., the game at a fairly high level, with a similar understanding of the basic concepts involved with authentic high calibre coaching. Where confusion reigns supreme in a specific team, there is an absence of quality coaching, and everything else associated with that team, therefore, needs to be viewed through the lens of that unfortunate context. Hopefully Lawrence does is better job than his predecessors. I know for a fact that he actually has this capacity, based on his work in New Jersey.

      • Aug 11, 20114:06 pm
        by Jason

        Reply

        I meant Stuckey couldnt distribute like he should. 

  • Aug 10, 201112:15 pm
    by vic

    Reply

    I think a coach that could put CV or BG in their right role could make them a lot better.
    Yeah they have not played up to par, but they can put the ball in the hole. This year will put the final determination on their value.

    To be honest, no one on our team has played at their highest level in the past 2 years, except for Tayshaun & Greg. Its good that Frank is known for getting the best out of what he has.

    • Aug 10, 20112:54 pm
      by tarsier

      Reply

      They can put the ball in the hole at an average rate and cant do anything else well. Everyone is better when in the correct role. But I am not seeing those two getting to the level of average starters.

      • Aug 11, 20113:25 pm
        by Dan Feldman

        Reply

        I have much more faith Gordon can (re-)reach that level than Villanueva can.

    • Aug 11, 20113:19 pm
      by Dan Feldman

      Reply

      Vic, without a doubt, for most of the season Gordon and Villanueva didn’t get the type of regular minutes they hoped they would. But they never showed they deserved bigger roles. And more troubling, even in the times they received consistent minutes during an extended time, they never showed they deserved to keep playing big minutes.

      • Aug 11, 201110:07 pm
        by Laser

        Reply

        i can’t let you get away with clumping these two in the same category as far as their respective abilities to contribute to the team. gordon has not had a proper chance to produce consistently since he’s been here. in fact, they are at exact polar opposites of the “opportunity” scale. with this team’s clusterf*ck perimeter, gordon never had a chinaman’s chance. with this team’s wafer-thin front line, villanueva never had an excuse.

        • Aug 12, 201112:56 am
          by khandor

          Reply

          @ Laser,
          re: Villanueva, Agreed.
          re: Gordon, Agreed, in part but not whole. It wasn’t “the Guard numbers” that did in Gordon’s chances to succeed in Detroit but Coach Kuester’s remarkable inability to ever settle on a workable Guard and Forward rotation for the benefit of the players on the roster. “Good” coaches sit down good players all the time in the NBA, so that role clarity is firmly established in the collective mind-set of a team. “Bad” coaches do the complete opposite … regardless of the number of good players on their actual roster.

  • Aug 10, 201112:23 pm
    by tads

    Reply

    Joe Dumars didn’t make any significant move except firing the coach (which he hired two and half years ago, btw), and signing some bench fodder (yes, They are all bench fodder. They all became starters because the team he constructed is terrible, but they shouldn’t be considered a diamond in the rough because everybody else sucked so hard that they got to put up big numbers).
    In the time that Joe D made was making these amazing (non-)moves, the Pistons played the worst basketball that they have in a decade. So I am supposed to be glad that we have a GM that does nothing in the face of horrible disasters?
    Praising him for not making mistakes is not acknowledging his lack of action.  That’s like saying the U.S. military didn’t make a bad move in the two years from 1937-1939, or like saying McDonalds hasn’t made a bad souffle in the past half a century.  It’s silly pointless logic, especially if this argument is intended to defend him.

    • Aug 11, 20113:31 pm
      by Dan Feldman

      Reply

      The post was a little tongue-in-cheek, but shouldn’t Dumars get credit for making right moves, even when they were minor? Doesn’t that give you more confidence in him now that the handcuffs are off?

      • Aug 11, 20114:55 pm
        by khandor

        Reply

        @ Dan,
        IMO, those who are super critical of the job which Joe Dumars has done, as the Pistons’ GM, are WAY off base. There are over-rated GMs in the NBA, to be sure … e.g. Bryan Colangelo [i.e. average only; not as good as advertised] and Daryl Morey [good; not great, as advertised] … but, if you look at his record of achievement, then, it is pretty clear-cut that Joe D. is, in fact, not one of them. For the most part, the super-critical “Joe D.-bashers” are devout disciples of the cult otherwise known as “[so-called] Advanced Stats-worshippers.” Despite what you’ve been told by an assortment of stats-based web sites, Winning NBA Championships are NOT won, in REAL Life, in a similar way to how you actually play “Rotisserie League/fantasy baseball.” :-)

        • Aug 11, 20115:22 pm
          by Dan Feldman

          Reply

          You realize every NBA team bases its decisions on stats, right? Every single team. And the team that uses stats best just happened to win last year’s title.

          • Aug 12, 20111:38 am
            by khandor

            @ Dan,
            1. Yes, indeed, every basketball coach, and administrator in the entire world … whether good, average, or bad … bases their decisions, at least, in part, on some form of statistical analysis. Every, single, one. This reality, however, does not make each and every one of them a legitimate “Worshipper of the Cult of [so-called] Advanced Stats Analysis.”
            2. Yes, the Dallas Mavericks happened to win the NBA Championship last year. Yes, the Mavericks are one of the many teams in the league that made use of some form of statistical analysis last season.
            3. No, this reality does NOT mean that THE BEST [or the only, or the most effective, etc.] way to win a REAL Life NBA Championship is to become a “Worshipper of the Cult of [so-called] Advanced Stats Analysis,” and in-effect function as though you are running a “make-believe” team in a Rotisserie/Fantasy Baseball League. If that was actually the case, then, Mark Cuban’s player payroll for last season would not have had to exceed the Luxury Tax Threshold by a GARGANTUAN AMOUNT, in comparison with the other teams in the League, and Rick Carlisle would not have had to use his considerable amount of “basketball acumen” [aka, "artfully learned/gut instinct"] when he chose to insert JJ Barea into his starting line-up for Game 3 of the NBA Finals … even though this new 5-man unit was not amongst the Mavs’ best groups during the entire regular season schedule … and, then, Erik Spoelstra failed to implement an effective counter-manoeuvre for Games 4, 5 or 6.

          • Aug 12, 20119:36 am
            by Jason

            They used stats but that is not the reason they one.  They won cause of there lineup makes complete sense.  They had a similar lineup that we had when we won it the last time.   It wasn’t cause of stats.

          • Aug 12, 201112:27 pm
            by brgulker

            You do realize that they built the lineup they built in large part due to statistical analysis, right?

          • Aug 12, 20111:00 pm
            by Jason

            I don’t think that is true. Of course a quality team and quality players will show good stats.

          • Aug 12, 20111:34 pm
            by Patrick Hayes

            You don’t think that’s true? Based on what? The fact that Mark Cuban and Donnie Walsh have both been panelists discussing statistical analysis at the Mecca of stat conferences, the Sloan Sports Analytics conference at MIT, all the time? The fact that Dallas gave Roland Beech, the founder of 82games.com, a championship ring this year and sat him on the bench with the coaching staff? The fact that Cuban himself said:

            “So we knew which lineups worked against which of their lineups. We also then had to build in substitution patterns and expected responses to change. Things that Coach Carlisle is great at. Its a chess match.

            Plus, Using stats arent always about putting your best combination out there, but sometimes about trying to get them to put their worst combination of players on the floor and then getting them to do things they are least comfortable with.”

            Dallas has also employed two assistant coaches over the years, Dwayne Casey and Del Harris, who are known innovators in how coaches use advanced stats to determine their best lineups, matchup strengths and weaknesses, etc.

            Dallas obviously has talented players, which is key. But you know a big reason Dallas has talented players who fit their system perfectly? Because they see and understand the value of advanced stats and currently use them better than probably any team in the league. Of course Dallas uses advanced stats to decide which players to sign, which players to play and which situations to play them in. There is evidence everywhere. Cuban for years has talked openly about paying the best and brightest analytical thinkers to advise the front office and coaching staff.

            I’m seriously at a loss for the denialism on this topic. What is wrong with statistical analysis? What is wrong with combining the tried and true methods of scouting/watching the game with new measures that better explain successes and failures on the court? Literally every team in the NBA is starting to understand this, and the franchises that understand it better than the others — Dallas, San Antonio, OKC to name a few — are all teams that have been able to sustain success.

          • Aug 12, 20111:46 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            You beat me to the punch, Patrick. I just spent 10 minutes looking for that Deadspin article. By the way, not so sure the Spurs lead the pack when it comes to using stats. I’ve seen Cuban indicate as such.

          • Aug 12, 20112:14 pm
            by khandor

            @ Patrick and Dan,
            1. Yes, Dallas uses stats when they make their personnel decisions. 2. So, too, however, do other teams. 3. THE REASON Dallas won the championship last year, however, is not BECAUSE the Mavs happened to have the services of Roland Beach, relative to the services of Wayne Winston. 4. If this is what you truly believe then I would simply ask that you provide some tangible evidence in that regard. e.g. Show that Roland Beach recommended to Rick Carlisle that JJ Barea should be inserted into their starting line-up for Game 4, in place of DeShawn Stevenson, because this specific 5-Man Unit was in fact one of Dallas’ most effective groups of the season, and that Wayne Winston’s hypothetical recommendation, at that same juncture would, in fact, NOT have been exactly the same. PS. FWIW, Know that I would be absolutely delighted if you could actually produce this specific type of legitimate proof. Of all people, statisticians most of all, should be able to understand that correlation simply does not equal causation.

          • Aug 12, 20112:40 pm
            by Jason

            I understand its used guys.  I am a CPA who deals with numbers all day everyday.  Probably know numbers better than you two combined.  But to say statistics is what won the championship is stupid.  It probably had 5% effect on what was going on.  And the effect it actually had was to the effect it helped them not SCREW up. Do you really think they are talking on the bench about oh wait Stevenson plus minus will work against this lineup Miami is putting on the court better than so and so.  No they are not.  And behind every stat is reason that stat is what it is. 

            And when you consider Dallas’s payroll don’t you think it skews there stats a little?  Do you think they went for Chandler who was the obvious person that put them over the top because of stats? Or just the fact an off the ball defensive guy and rebounder is the OBVIOUS choice next to Dirk?

          • Aug 12, 20112:42 pm
            by Jason

            Also I though OKC said the actually effect stats plays in there decision is very minimum. 

          • Aug 12, 20113:09 pm
            by Jason

            @Patrick

            Don’t call me denialist asshole.  I understand its used and for your sake give me 5 ways its been used from the stat and how it worked on the court.  I want specific examples that you know of from the stat to the team to the player to how it was used.  Please give me 5 examples Patrick.

          • Aug 12, 20113:13 pm
            by Patrick Hayes

            @Jason:

            I mean, congrats on being a CPA. And where did OKC say that?

            This is part of the problem in communicating here. I’m open to being proven wrong, but my initial comment is supported to links where people are actually saying the the things that I say that they said. You threw out an arbitrary “5 percent” figure that is based on nothing, you cited a stat in plus-minus that is easily accessed in any boxscore and obviously something a team wouldn’t pay good money to a statistician to give them an advantage and you said OKC said they don’t use stats much without any kind of attribution or link.

            I mean, anyone can throw out arbitrary bullshit and call it an argument. But do you at least see the weakness of it? How am I supposed to refute something that has no citation or refute a figure that you just concocted out of your own personal opinion?

          • Aug 12, 20113:19 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            “ Do you really think they are talking on the bench about oh wait Stevenson plus minus will work against this lineup Miami is putting on the court better than so and so.”

            Yes, absolutely. Did you read that quote from Cuban that Patrick posted?

            “Do you think they went for Chandler who was the obvious person that put them over the top because of stats? Or just the fact an off the ball defensive guy and rebounder is the OBVIOUS choice next to Dirk?”

            Yes and yes. When the stats and what you see on the court match up, it’s probably true. Chandler looked like a good acquisition for many reasons, stats included.

            Nobody is claiming the Mavericks won the title solely because of their use of stats. But they used stats smartly to help them acquire excellent players and place those players in a position to succeed.

            And yes, the Thunder definitely use stats to inform their decisions:

            http://www.pistonpowered.com/2011/03/pistons-probably-dont-have-statistical-analysis-department-front-office-member-downplays-importance-of-having-one/

          • Aug 12, 20113:30 pm
            by Jason

            Just give me actual examples please.  Real fricken examples. 

            I think it was mailbag question to Langlois.  He quoted someone from OKC saying that they really didnt use it much.

            All I need to say is the Mavericks payroll skews your only example.  Does it not?  I think they had the 3rd highest payroll.  So say what you want I think that skews your sample quite a bit. 

            Regarding my arguments. I know what I know and I just don;’t have time to provide linked data.  Sorry

          • Aug 12, 20113:32 pm
            by Patrick Hayes

            Five ways? I’d be happy to!

            - Mark Cuban talks in-depth here about a player lineup evaluation system they use that found, among other things, Jason Kidd is way more valuable even at this advanced stage in his career than most around the league realize.

            - John Hollinger reports here on Rick Carlisle’s belief in advanced stats when determining who he plays and who he doesn’t. For example, inserting J.J. Barea into the lineup was not simply a “gut” decision. It was based on their analysis.

            - Dallas Morning News reports here on the Mavs’ use of the points per possession stat as a better measure of defense than traditional stats.

            - Roland Beech talks here about his role with the Mavs and the highly secretive stats he comes up with for the team.

            - Wall Street Journal talks here about how they evaluate lineups based on stats.

            Something important to keep in mind, too, is that we’re not talking about stats that everyone has access to. The Mavs pay smart people to develop stats for them. They don’t release these to the public because it is a competitive advantage to the Mavs to employ these people and take advantage of their expertise. But I found those links with a three minute google search. There are many, many instances of this topic being covered and of Mavs employees talking about it.

          • Aug 12, 20113:35 pm
            by Patrick Hayes

            “Don’t call me denialist asshole.”

            I didn’t call you a denialist asshole. Or is that another comma fail?

          • Aug 12, 20113:38 pm
            by Jason

            @Dan

            See I remember that question to Langlois.  It says what I am talking about.  They use but not extensively.  I am pretty sure every team looks at stats. I am not saying that.  I just don like when you try and back up your opinion to me with stats expecially when they don’t fully back up the WHOLE argument.  Like with the stats on Charlie V.

            Also regarding Cuban’s comment. First that is from Cuban not Carlisle. Also Cuban may be confused cause every team makes decisions in regards to match ups. Which Carlisle was probably doing and which Cuban thinks its solely based on stats.

            Let me just admit.  Yes teams use stats analysis.  I know this ok.  I would too.  But the more you rely on stats the farther you get yourself from understanding the great game of basketball.  Trust me on this.

          • Aug 12, 20113:46 pm
            by Jason

            Your article regarding Carlisle and the Barea example does specificly state how stats put him in.  Please point that out for me.

            I am not saying people dont use stats. Just stating I think it will always be overated.

            You havent explained my theory that your example is greatly skewed by there payroll and now from your article probably from there coaching and executives payroll.  Please explain how that should not skew your example.  PLEASE

          • Aug 12, 20113:59 pm
            by Patrick Hayes

            It doesn’t specifically say, because as the other articles mentioned, Dallas doesn’t reveal much publicly about the specific stats they use. It does mention that Carlisle bases his rotations on statistical analysis and that he uses statistical analysis more than any coach in the league. Those are the key takeaways from it. I don’t know what specific stat led him to play Barea because they haven’t said, presumably because they don’t want other teams to know about it. The article does mention the fact that they knew Bibby was terrible and wanted Miami to play Bibby more, which the Heat did when Barea was on the floor. So I would guess that has something to do with it — Carlisle was trying to get Spoelstra to keep Bibby on the floor as much as possible and putting Barea in accomplished that.

            Also, I thoroughly enjoy your constant demands on other commenters to explain things to you, provide evidence, etc. But when people ask you for similar clarification or evidence, you say, “I know what I know and I just don;’t have time to provide linked data.  Sorry”

            Well Jason, I know what I know too. And until you actually put more thought and effort into your comments, I think I’m just going to steal that quote from you and use that as my stock response to you from now on.

          • Aug 13, 201112:08 am
            by khandor

            @ Dan,
            re: “I don’t know what specific stat led him to play Barea because they haven’t said, presumably because they don’t want other teams to know about it.”
            —————————
            THE reason you don’t know what specific stat led Carlisle to insert Barea in the starting 5-Man unit in place of Stevenson for Game 4 is because NO SUCH STAT actually exists … not because it exists and they “presumably” don’t want other teams to know about it.
            Look at the Mavs’ Top 5-Man Unit stats for the past season at 82games.com and you will see that a group of:
            Barea + Kidd + Marion + Nowitzki + Chandler
            is NOWHERE TO BE FOUND.
            That is Roland Beech’s baby … and you can bet YOUR MORTGAGE on the fact that NO SUCH STAT EXITS.
            Rick Carlisle is a d*mn fine coach, at this stage of his career, and he is the main reason that the Mavs were able to overcome the Heat in this year’s NBA Finals.

          • Aug 13, 201112:36 am
            by Patrick Hayes

            First of all Khandor, if you’re going to write thousands of meaningless words in the comments section in that annoying prose-style you have, at least have the courtesy to read the names of who wrote what. Dan didn’t write the thing you excerpted, I did. I’m going to line by line this garbage and then call it quits on this thread.

            “THE reason you don’t know what specific stat led Carlisle to insert Barea in the starting 5-Man unit in place of Stevenson for Game 4 is because NO SUCH STAT actually exists … not because it exists and they “presumably” don’t want other teams to know about it.”

            Shutup. Shutup. Shutup. Read the goddamn link I supplied. It talks extensively about Carlisle and the coaching staff using advanced stats to determine their rotation and it also mentions how tight-lipped they are about the data they analyze. They don’t want other teams to copy it.

            “Look at the Mavs’ Top 5-Man Unit stats for the past season at 82games.com and you will see that a group of:
            Barea + Kidd + Marion + Nowitzki + Chandler
            is NOWHERE TO BE FOUND.”

            No shit. The reason Barea was put into the lineup was because the Heat always seemed to keep Bibby on the floor when Barea was in. Bibby sucks. And as we saw in the series, the Heat were drastically out-scored when Bibby played. The Mavs wanted Bibby to play, and for some reason, Barea’s presence seemed to always result in Bibby being on the court.

            “That is Roland Beech’s baby … and you can bet YOUR MORTGAGE on the fact that NO SUCH STAT EXITS.”

            Again, shutup. Is there a stat that says JJ Barea is awesome? No there isn’t. Is there some data that the Mavs looked at that said, “Hmm … when JJ Barea is on the court, it causes Miami to do this, which creates an advantage for us.”

            “Rick Carlisle is a d*mn fine coach, at this stage of his career, and he is the main reason that the Mavs were able to overcome the Heat in this year’s NBA Finals.”

            Yes. And you know what makes him a “damn fine coach?” Because he’s more open-minded to analytics than any coach in the league. And before you come back with another half-witted reply, that is well-established if you bother to click the sources I supply to back up what I say.

            Seriously, as I told Jason above, my days of arguing with people who solely think that their personal opinions that are not supported by anything other than being self-proclaimed basketball experts, are over. I could care less about your cryptic allusions to some mysterious experience working with high level athletes. All I know is that your writing is atrocious and the condescending way you talk on here makes me want to ram my head through the computer screen. It hurts my brain to read your sentences. It’s an assault on the English language. And trust me, I have a lot of high level experience working with talented English writers, so I can definitively judge when someone has no talent at it. Maybe your poor writing is a product of improper coaching. Maybe you were in a high school English class and the teacher didn’t allocate enough minutes to spend with everyone. Maybe your best position was in the back of the class and the teacher insisted on putting you up front. Who really knows the answer to these things. Maybe an elite level high school teacher could’ve changed things for you.

            But in short, stop being a know-it-all, stop boring me with repetitive lies about your experience and stop assuming you are smarter than everyone else in the room. Start supporting bullshit you say with links or anecdotes that support it (and Bill Russell quotes don’t count as support … Bill Russell would bash his head against the wall reading this stuff too). Basically, communicate like a human being or don’t expect to have any real dialogue anymore. I can’t do the maddening back and forth with people with no reading comprehension anymore.

          • Aug 13, 20113:52 am
            by khandor

            @ Patrick,
            My apologies for mixing up your name with Dan’s. I read the links you provided. I also read the word “presumably” which you included in your comment about the stat that you believe exists – somewhere – but has yet to be revealed by the Mavericks. Unfortunately, this is not valid evidence of this stats actual existence. Jason told you that but you seemed not to listen to his comment. Rick Carlisle is a very good coach … but, not for the reason you stated. I won’t get into the various why, IMO … because you do not seem to be sincerely interested in reading my thoughts on the subject. The way I choose to write is the way I choose to write. Just like the way you choose to write is the way you choose to write. It’s interesting that you have the ability to look past the eccentricities of someone like Dennis Rodman and then dwell negatively on why exactly someone else might decide to write in a distinctively different way than you. Hopefully you have read the compliment I gave to you on the fine piece you wrote this evening about ‘The Worm’. I meant exactly what I said. Get some rest. It’s probably been a long day for you.

  • Aug 10, 201112:53 pm
    by DSV

    Reply

    So, via this logic – my move to NOT hook up with a girl who likely had multiple STDs and illegitimate children was a good move the other weekend. Let me pat myself on the back and sign myself an extension.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7yl3UMO-TkE 

    (just kidding just kidding)

  • Aug 10, 201112:57 pm
    by khandor

    Reply

    @ Dan,
    1. Great job, overall.
    2. re: “Drafted Kyle Singler with the No. 33 pick in 2011 NBA draft
    Neutral move
    I don’t think Singler has the talent and athleticism to stick in the NBA, but at least he’ll probably play hard and act professionally. Let’s call it a wash. Besides, I’m not sure a second-round pick can ever be a bad move. Too few of them ever impact the NBA.”
    I disagree, however, with this assessment of Kyle Singler’s ability to eventually succeed, as a highly serviceable role player for a very good team, in the NBA. IMO, time will eventually prove that Kyle Singler is, indeed, very much in the mold of other very valuable NBA veterans with good size and relative athleticism at the SF position, e.g. Shane Battier and Tayshaun Prince, James Posey, etc.

    • Aug 10, 20112:50 pm
      by tarsier

      Reply

      James Posey’s contributions to the 08 Celtics were some of the most overrated I’ve ever witnessed. And apart from then, when has he ever contributed better than a typical 7th or 8th player in a rotation?

    • Aug 10, 20113:29 pm
      by Birdman84

      Reply

      Khandor, there are significant problems with expecting Singler to replicate the production of Prince, Battier, and/or Posey. First of all, his college production did not match theirs. Second, and perhaps most important, is that Singler is a second rounder. The other three were first rounders; Battier was in the lottery. Obviously the personnel experts working for NBA teams saw more in Prince, Battier, and Posey than in Singler. When both statistical projections and expert analysis agree, odds are good they’re right.

      • Aug 11, 20113:44 pm
        by Dan Feldman

        Reply

        Birdman, well said. You’re quickly shooting up the list of my favorite commenters.

        • Aug 11, 20114:56 pm
          by Birdman84

          Reply

          Stop it, you’re making me blush.

        • Aug 11, 20114:59 pm
          by khandor

          Reply

          @ Dan,
          If/when Singler is able to succeed in a similar to one of the other veterans referenced in my initial comment, THEN, it SHOULD further illuminate just how good this pick was by Joe Dumars, since Kyle was selected in the 2nd Round, rather than the 1st.
          The fact is … Birdman actually has it backwards.

          • Aug 11, 20115:23 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            So, you’re saying you’re smarter than all those GMs with first-round picks who passed on Singler?

          • Aug 11, 20117:48 pm
            by tarsier

            Of course he is. When has Khandor ever not insinuated that he is smarter than everyone in the NBA—combined.

          • Aug 11, 201110:56 pm
            by Birdman84

             

            Khandor, of course if Singler turns out to be as good as Prince, Battier, and Posey it would be a great pick by Dumars. I never stated otherwise. Perhaps you misunderstood my point?

            Most everyone doubts Singler will be as successful as Prince, etc. for a variety of reasons. I also view it as unlikely. That was all I was saying. You disagree, but have failed to provide much convincing evidence.

             

          • Aug 12, 20112:10 am
            by khandor

            @ Dan,
            No, I did not say that I am “smarter” than every GM in the NBA with a 1st Round pick that chose to pass on Kyle Singler. What I said is that:
            1. Joe Dumars is a better GM than all but 6 of the other GMs in the NBA today, i.e. RC Buford, Pat Riley, Mitch Kupchak, Danny Ainge, and Donnie Nelson;
            2. Kyle Singler is cut from similar cloth … i.e. based on his attitude to-date, his physical make-up, and skill-set … as a range of other highly serviceable veteran role players at the SF position, e.g. Tayshaun Prince, Shane Battier, and James Posey.
            3. If Kyle Singler is fortunate enough to receive authentic elite level coaching in the NBA, he has the capacity to eventually perform in a similar way for the Pistons.
            You are free to make your own assessment of my level of “basketball acumen”, in comparison with whoever else you’d like to measure me against, based on what I’ve written about the game [A] on my own blog, [B] in the comments section of this fine site, and in the comments sections of other blogs/web sites in the on-line hoops community.

          • Aug 12, 201112:04 pm
            by brgulker

            Danny Ainge’s credibility is in the crapper after the Perkins trade. Boston is totally and completely screwed now. They have no interior presence whatsoever outside of Garnett. That trade single-handedly ended Boston’s hopes at another run out East.

            Prediction: Kyle Singler will stick around for a few years based on name recognition, work ethic, and good attitude. But he’ll be the 12th man somewhere, and he’ll probably watch a lot of games from behind the bench in a suit. 

            Forwards who miss lots of shots and don’t rebound have a hard time sticking in the NBA. See former Piston Summers as a great example. 

            If my prediction is wrong, khandor will make another non-falsifiable assertion that he failed to develop because he didn’t get elite coaching.  The assertion could be true, but no one will have any way to verify it. As opinion, the assertion would be tolerable. Everyone has opinions, and that’s cool. But khandor, you won’t state it as an opinion. You’ll state it as a scientific fact based on your alleged elite experience and acumen, and expect the world to trust you based on experience you refuse to verify.

          • Aug 12, 20112:43 pm
            by khandor

            @ Ben,
            1. Ainge’s credibility across the NBA is far from being in “the crapper” after the Perkins/Green+Krstic trade. The fact is: Ainge was a high calibre GM before he made the Garnett and Allen acquisitions, after he made those specific acquisitions … in addition to several other good ones, as well … before he made the Perkins/Green+Krstic trade, and then after he made the Perkins/Green+Krstic trade. Time will tell, if OKC eventually has a better GM on its payroll than does BOS. To this point, however, the fact is that Danny Ainge has done a better job of producing a championship-winning team for the Celtics than Sam Presti has for the Thunder.
            2. My corresponding prediction for Kyle Singler? He will eventually become a very serviceable role player for a very good team in the NBA. It will be very interesting to see which one of our respective predictions is most accurate as far as Singler’s NBA career is concerned. He seems like a terrific young man, and my only hope is that he is fortunate enough to receive high calibre coaching with whatever team he has the opportunity to play.
            3. re: comparing Singler to Summers
            What Singler has in fact been able to accomplish to-date in his basketball career dwarfs that which Summers has been able to accomplish at a similar point in time. These two players are not even very similar, when you compare their relative abilities as prospective NBA players at the SF position, e.g. Summers is a PF who has some ability to play effectively at the SF spot. Singler is a SF who has some ability to play effectively at the PF spot. These are very different types of role players in the NBA environment … with the latter being WAY MORE important/valuable than the former.

          • Aug 12, 20113:48 pm
            by brgulker

            1) Khandor, why don’t you respond to what I say? I didn’t say anything about Presti vs. Ainge. I said something only about Ainge and the current Celtics’ roster that he has constructed.

            Do they or do they not have a very significant problem at the C position specifically because Ainge traded Perkins for Kristic/Green?

            Because they do have a huge problem at C, they’re in a very difficult spot. Their window with Pierce/Allen/KG/Rondo is closing quickly if they don’t have at least two guys who are serviceable at C.

            True or false?

            With regard to OKC, you’re crazy if you’d rather have the C’s current roster (good but old and fragile) than OKC’s (young with one superstar, one star – Westbrook, and one up and coming star in Harden).

            Presti deserves the credit for where they are.

            2) Bookmark this page, and let’s return to it. I’m willing to admit he’ll stick in the NBA for a bit due to name recognition. But not more than that.

            3) Summers played SF in the NBA, and occasionally at PF when the Pistons went small. More evidence you don’t watch the Pistons play basketball very often.

            Singler at PF in the NBA? You gotta be kidding me.  Dude will get wrecked.

          • Aug 13, 201112:57 am
            by khandor

            @ Ben,
            1. I included a reference to the Ainge/Presti comparison because YOU mentioned that YOU think Ainge’s credibility is in the crapper as a direct result of the Perkins+Krstic/Green trade. If you didn’t want me to mention anything about Presti then you should not have mentioned anything about the trade between Bos and OKC. Fair enough?
            Yes, IMO, Boston now has a problem at the Center position.
            i. Are you also aware, however, of what specific problems Boston may have had at the Center position, in addition to other areas of their team, as well, that Ainge was attempting to effectively address, when he decided to pull th trigger on that transaction?
            ii. Ainge has said publicly that the reason Boston did not advance further in this year’s playoffs was not because of their team’s demise at the defensive end of the floor … which is where KP’s strength lies, as an individual and a team player … but, rather, with their developing demise/struggles at the offensive end of the floor … which is where KP’s weaknesses actually happen to exist.
            iii. Whether or not you may want to believe it … IMO, Danny Ainge knew full well what he was doing when he made that trade and the risks he incurred by doing it when he did. He was trading one set of problems for a different set of problems, primarily, because he did not believe that the team he had at the time would be capable of beating the Miami Heat, if they were to meet in the playoffs, based on how the Celtics had performed after the return of KP and given the plethora of significant injuries Boston had to key players on their roster.
            iv. The jury is definitely still out on whether or not Boston can recover from whatever malady Danny Ainge felt was ailing them before he made the deal for Green+Krstic but it is a mistake to think that the Celtics would have been able to get past Miami in the playoffs last season if they had NOT made the trade they did with OKC.
            v. Are you familiar with the Fallacy of Affirming the Consequent?
            vi. I did not say that I would choose the Celtics’ current roster over the Thunder’s, going forward. I said that what Ainge has accomplished to this point, as a GM in the NBA, puts him into a superior category, compared to what Presti has actually accomplished, thus far.
            2. It will be fun to track Singler’s future development as a player to see which one of our opinions ends up being the more accurate.
            3. I did not say that Summers played PF for the Pistons. Please re-read what I actually wrote about him and the position at which I think his skills would be best utilized by a good team in the NBA.
            4. At this point in his fledgling career, IMO, Singler’s [6-8, 230] best position in the NBA will be SF. However, this does not mean that later on, as he continues to mature physically, he will not be able to succeed in smaller stretches of PT at the PF spot, in a similar way to how Shane Battier [6-8, 220] has been able to play effectively in a smaller line-up for the Houston Rockets.

          • Aug 15, 20112:34 pm
            by brgulker

            This is maddening. The Celtics are in a very precarious position as a direct result of Ainge’s personnel decisions. This is obvious to everyone who has any type of basketball sense, including you.

            I point this out, and you use it as an opportunity to argue meaningless points about Ainge vs. Presti vs. The pantheon of NBA GMs. Why?

            Can’t you ever just let a fact stand for what it is and not chase every possible tangent of said fact?

            The C’s are no longer an elite team because they don’t have a C. True or false?

            They no longer have a C because Ainge traded their C. True or false?  

            Are you capable of admitting fact when presented with it or not?

          • Aug 15, 20114:24 pm
            by khandor

            @ Ben,
            The MAIN reason Boston failed to beat Miami in the playoffs is not because Danny Ainge traded Kendrick Perkins in return for Jeff Green + Nenad Krstic.
            If you actually watched the games played in that series and then listened to what Danny Ainge had to say, in the aftermath … instead of just blindly looking at the WP numbers of the players involved … then, you should be able to understand that the Celtics’ major problem in that specific match-up was NOT on the defensive end of the floor – which is where KP’s individual strength lies. The Celtics’ D was fine without KP. What wasn’t fine with the C’s, however … A. prior to this trade, B. after KP had returned from his injury rehab AND C. in the series vs MIA … was Boston’s inept offense [i.e. KP's supposed area of weakness] and their mediocre rebounding [i.e. a supposed KP strength].
            Although the overly-simplistic interpretation of what really happened to the Celtics is that Boston suffered without KP at the Center position vs Miami, this was not the REAL source of their demise, e.g. which included debilitating injuries to Rondo [which also hurt the off production of Pierce, Allen and Garnett], Shaq, and Daniels, and overall poor play by Big Baby and Jermaine O’Neal.
            Do not be mis-led by the regular season losses that the Heat had vs Boston.
            IMO, Danny Ainge could tell that all was not right with the Celtics, from an offensive standpoint, after KP returned to their line-up, and he tried to do something at the SF-PF position to alleviate it … which, unfortunately, for Boston failed to correct their problems.
            As always, you and others are free to think differently, if you wish.
            PS. It’s a big mistake in judgment to think that the KP who has now moved on to OKC is going to be just as effective as he once was for the Boston Celtics [e.g. given his attitude, his injury and the lack of other veteran leaders in OKC, other than Nick Collison].

  • Aug 10, 20111:06 pm
    by RyanK

    Reply

    I agree Joe has not made any major errors lately.  It’s too early to know if he is dead on correct with everything he’s done in the past two years.  There’s no way for him to be correct about everything though.
     
    Signing Gordon and CV were mistakes, but from everything he said, he wasn’t allowed to correct those mistakes because of the ownership situation.  Joe has made mistakes like this in the past, but has quickly corrected the situation.  Since Joe’s hands were cuffed, this Gordon, CV, Rip situation has magnified.  We need to judge him on these issues now that he’s supposed to have the freedom to do what needs to be done.

  • Aug 10, 20111:41 pm
    by Jason

    Reply

    I think Gordon is going to surprise people next year.   Thats if he is still here. 
    CV not so sure cause we have so many Power Forwards.

    • Aug 10, 20112:47 pm
      by tarsier

      Reply

      I guaransheed Gordon will surprise people next year The only question is whether those people will be Jason and Langlois or pretty much everyone else.

      • Aug 10, 20115:54 pm
        by Laser

        Reply

        i actually want to kiss you on the mouth after reading this.

    • Aug 10, 20113:46 pm
      by brgulker

      Reply

      Maxiel and CV. Those are our PFs. Unless you count Jonas, who will probably split time at both spots.

      So, um, yeah.

      • Aug 10, 20114:03 pm
        by Jason

        Reply

        Power Forwards
        Maxiell, CV, JJ, Monroe, Macklin
        JJ is not a SF.

        • Aug 10, 20114:14 pm
          by brgulker

          Reply

          Macklin doesn’t have a roster spot or guaranteed contract. It’s premature to count him.

          JJ played plenty of SF his rookie year.

          What is it with Piston Powered commenters constantly denying facts? JJ played SF, man, and he’s likely to play more. How can you deny that?

          • Aug 10, 20114:22 pm
            by Jason

            Did I say he didnt play there?  I know he can play at SF but I also know he is PF not a SF.  FACT.

          • Aug 10, 20115:01 pm
            by Birdman84

            Here is a fact: In Jerebko’s rookie year, he split time almost equally between the forward positions. I think it’s fair to call him a combo forward. We’ll see where he spends more of his time this season. I suspect we’ll see a similar split.

          • Aug 11, 20113:51 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            As Birdman said, Jerebko split time between both forward spots nearly equally as a rookie:

            http://www.82games.com/0910/09DET7.HTM

            Since then, he’s reportedly added plenty of weight. Plus, as Gulker said, the Pistons aren’t exactly full of quality power forward options. I’d say Jerebko will likely see plenty of minutes at power forward next season.

          • Aug 11, 20114:09 pm
            by Jason

            @ Dan

            You don’t think Power Forward is our strenght?

            Monroe/JJ/Maxiel/Charlie V/Macklin

            Thats pretty deep.

          • Aug 11, 20115:01 pm
            by Birdman84

            Jason, there might be a lot of Pistons that can play PF, but that doesn’t mean they’ll play it well. Furthermore, the numbers don’t work out all that well. Monroe will split time at center and Jerebko will likely split time at SF. Macklin will have a hard time making the time; in my opinion he’s more of a center prospect anyhow. Maxiell and Charlie aren’t all that good, unfortunately. I don’t think power forward will be a strength of the Pistons.

          • Aug 11, 20115:08 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            Jason, Monroe can play power forward and center. Few players can play center, so Monroe will play center. Jerebko will see some time at small forward. Villanueva hasn’t had a even a half season of playing well with the Pistons. Maxiell hasn’t been a rotation-caliber power forward in years. And Macklin, until he shows otherwise, counts to me as a zero.

            So, no, I don’t consider power forward a strength.

          • Aug 11, 20115:08 pm
            by khandor

            @ Dan,
            Have you ever considered the possibility that the persons who work for 82games.com and are responsible for classifying which players are considered to be playing at which specific positions in a particular NBA game might NOT actually be particularly adept [i.e. lack expertise?] at their job? … which would then invalidate much of the positional data now perceived to be highly accurate.
            FWIW, IMO, Jonas Jerebko’s best position in the NBA game is Power Forward.

          • Aug 11, 20115:29 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            Considering the guy who founded the site sat on the Mavericks’ bench last season because the team valued his statistical work, I’d say it’s unlikely.

          • Aug 12, 20112:58 am
            by khandor

            @ Dan.
            Ahhh. I see. Excellence by association.
            Would this same principle now apply to someone like Ian Mahinmi/C, as well, since was also a new and integral addition to the Mavs’ bench last season?
            [i.e. He, too, should now be considered a top flight practicioner of his individual craft and, therefore, incapable of spawning somehow less-than stellar underlings who are paid a significantly smaller salary to work under his direction, in a similar but not quite exactly the same basketball-related capacity.]
            PS. Since the Mavs used Wayne Winston in a similar role in previous seasons when they happened not to win the NBA Championship … Does this mean that you believe Wayne is somehow an inferior statistician, when compared to Roland Beach? or, perhaps, That Wayne’s methodology is somehow inferior, when compared to Roland’s? or, perhaps, That Wayne is somehow an inferior “basketball analyst,” when compared to Roland? or, perhaps, That neither Wayne nor Roland is capable of making a poor hiring decision, since both men are noteworthy statisticians, and men of this persuasion do not customarily make mistakes of this sort given their background and training.
            PPS. Personally, I think Wayne and Roland are both good at what they do; and, that neither one was primarily responsible for the Mavs’ major success last season, nor their previous failures.

          • Aug 12, 20119:42 am
            by Jason

            @dan,

            But going forward we are solid at the 4 spot.  How can you deny that.  Monroe is not a true Center but yes can play there.  JJ is not a true SF but yes can play there.  But a depth of:

            Monroe/Charlie V/JJ/Maxiel/Macklin is not a problem to have.  JJ, Maxiel, B Wallace, and Macklin can all play along side with Charlie and Monroe but we still need a younger B Wallace type at Center.  Then we will be fine.

            Next year ok JJ can play some at SF but we are going to be very weak there and will need to upgrade somehow. I am not sold on Daye unless he can start guarding the SF we will be facing in the playoffs.

          • Aug 12, 20111:48 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            Khandor, my point wasn’t that Beech’s analysis is better or worse than anyone else. But the fact that an NBA team hired him indicates to me that his method for estimating how many minutes players played at each position probably works. What evidence do you have that those number are inaccurate?

          • Aug 12, 20111:57 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            Jason, center is a much, much, much tougher position to fill than center. If the Pistons want to make Monroe a power forward when he can play center, unless they acquire someone who can play only center (again, extremely tough to do), that’s a mistake. So if for some insane reason the Pistons insist on making Monroe a power forward, yes, they have a reasonable amount of ability at that position. But they’d have a GIANT hole at center, and that would put the team in a worse position.

            If the Pistons’ goal is building a quality team, they’re lacking production at power forward. If their goal is building depth at power forward, they’re alright at that position.

          • Aug 12, 20112:03 pm
            by brgulker

            Dan’s point further underscores the silliness of drafting Knight, as opposed to Morris or Faried. We have no depth at C and a bunch of pretty crappy PFs. A guy like Faried or Morris could have at least shored up our rebounding.

            /dead horse

          • Aug 12, 20112:59 pm
            by khandor

            @ Dan,
            At what position does 82games.com have Tim Duncan listed at? PF or C? Is this correct, IYO?
            At what position does 82games.com have Dirk Nowitzki listed at? PF or C? Is this correct, IYO?
            At what position does 82.games.com have Andrea Bargnani listed? PF or C? Is this correct, IYO?
            At what position did 82games.com have Larry Bird, Michael Jordan, Oscar Robertson, Scottie Pippen, Dennis Rodman, Ron Harper, Paul Pressey, etc., listed at, when they each toiled in the NBA, across the span of their respective, and varied, careers, as examples of a range of hard to categorize correctly multi-skilled perimeter players with diverse individual game’s?
            Just because something seems to work fine does not mean that it is actually qualifies as being accurate information.

          • Aug 12, 20113:16 pm
            by Jason

            Monroe is fricken power forward.  Do you watch how he plays?  If we put a true power fricken forward next to him we are worse off.  I have no idea what you are talking about Dan.  Your last comment on this subject is really unitelligent. 

          • Aug 12, 20113:29 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            Gulker, I believe teams should almost always draft the best prospect available. I think that was Knight. Do you really think Morris and Faried will turn into players capable of starting at power forwards for a contending team? If not, is them making the Pistons marginally better next year really worth the trade off?

          • Aug 12, 20113:31 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            Khandor, why don’t you provide one reason to doubt 82games’ numbers. Just one. Other than the vague, “Well, they might be wrong. How do we know?”

          • Aug 12, 20113:32 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            Jason, what makes a player a center?

          • Aug 12, 20113:48 pm
            by Jason

            Dan, what makes a player a power forward?

          • Aug 12, 20114:14 pm
            by brgulker

            Do you really think Morris and Faried will turn into players capable of starting at power forwards for a contending team? If not, is them making the Pistons marginally better next year really worth the trade off?

            No. I think they’re probably third or fourth big men in the rotation. Faried has more room for growth, IMHO. I think he could start next to a Tim Duncan. If Monroe progresses, I think he could start next to Monroe. Faried could focus completely on rebounding and finishing off plays others make for him. Monroe  could focus on his offense and facilitation. 

            My problem with Knight is that I think his ceiling is Stuckey with a better jumpshot, but there’s a lot more risk. I do not see in him what the pundits see in him. I don’t see superstar. I don’t see him being the starting PG for a contending team. He could flame out and be the next Jeff Teague, and to me, that just looks just as likely as becoming the next Stuckey.

            He doesn’t fit a team need either. For that reason, I’d have opted for a big who has a skillset that’s very likely to translate to the NBA that’s also a team need, i.e., rebounding. Faried is an elite rebounder. He’s very likely to be a very good rebounder in the pros. Since rebounding helps win games, that’s the direction I’d have gone.

          • Aug 13, 20111:12 am
            by khandor

            Here’s an example which is close to home, from the 2009-2010 season, re: the positional allocation of MP for Andrea Bargnani of the Toronto Raptors:
            http://www.82games.com/0910/09TOR12.HTM
            The fact is … during the 2009-2010 season, Andrea Bargnani played his minutes at Center for the Raptors, not split between the PF and C spots.

  • Aug 10, 20112:49 pm
    by vic

    Reply

    @ Jason I agree….

    BG is going to get it back with better coaching.

    A well coached CV could max out as a “Big Shot Chuck” role player for situational strategy a la Robert Horry

    • Aug 10, 20112:53 pm
      by Patrick Hayes

      Reply

      Robert Horry could shoot, yes. But don’t underestimate the other reasons he got on the court — he had a through the roof basketball IQ, he was an elite defensive player and he averaged more than a block a game through his first 10 years in the league. It’s not like his teams were throwing a dude with only one dimension out on the court. Villanueva can’t even play passable defense at this point, let alone good defense. Until that changes, I find it hard to believe any good team that values defense at all would find a spot for him in their rotation.

      • Aug 10, 20113:05 pm
        by Jason

        Reply

        Don’t forget that CV spreads the offense out.  Also I don’t remember CV being that bad at defense.  I mean he isn’t good but I remember games he played better than average actually. 

        I get how he doesn’t fit Pistons DNA though.  But I loved watching him his last year for the Bucks. 

        • Aug 11, 20114:05 pm
          by Dan Feldman

          Reply

          With Villanueva on the court, the Pistons scored 107.0 points per 100 possessions. Without Villanueva on the court, the Pistons scored 108.5 points per 100 possession.

          If he has some ability to spread the court and make the Pistons’ offense more productive, he didn’t actually do it last season.

          • Aug 11, 20114:11 pm
            by Jason

            You are right he doesn’t spread the offense out.    ?????

          • Aug 11, 20115:19 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            Even if he spreads the court, he doesn’t improve the Pistons offense. So, what’s the point?

          • Aug 12, 20119:45 am
            by Jason

            So you don’t think some players will make one team better than the other. Its just basketball common sense do you agree?  So what if his stupid stats say that for us.  Our mixup of players are all messed up.  But I gaurentee he would make other teams better and hopefully ours next year. Thats if he isn’t traded. 

          • Aug 12, 20112:09 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            I don’t understand what you’re saying. Yes, I think some players make their team’s offense better. I don’t think Villanueva is one of those players.

          • Aug 12, 20113:18 pm
            by Jason

            I am saying your stupid stat is skewed with the Pistons.  He would definitly help a team like the Heat.

          • Aug 12, 20113:43 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            I think the exact opposite. Villanueva taking shots that could’ve gone to LeBron, Wade or Bosh would make the Heat’s offense way worse.

          • Aug 12, 20113:49 pm
            by Jason

            Now your making shit up.  Cause personally its pretty obvious he would open that offense right up like Rasheed Wallace did in Detroit.  So what if they took shots away from them.  They shoot to many jumpers as it is.

  • Aug 10, 20113:45 pm
    by brgulker

    Reply

    made a difficult driving/falling-to-the-ground-semi-scoop-layup-vs-Princeton

    Apart from making him a good candidate for the Harlem Globetrotters, I fail to see what this has to do with anything.

    Kid made a lucky shot in a big moment. Who cares? Had he made half of his shots before that one, he’d never have put his team in a position in which they needed bailing out.

  • Aug 10, 20113:52 pm
    by brgulker

    Reply

    Have you taken the time to look into the academic track record of certain high achieving basketball players like Bill Russell, and Steve Nash, etc.?

    Kevin Garnett and LeBron James want to know WTF you’re talking about.

    • Aug 10, 20114:13 pm
      by Patrick Hayes

      Reply

      Amar’e Stoudemire too:

      “One time we were in the locker room, this was around the election of 2004. Jimmy Jackson comes in one day and he’s talking to the guys about, well you should vote for this guy or whatever. Of course at the time it was George W. Bush against John Kerry and Amare stands up and says, ‘I don’t know what the Hell you guys are talking about because I’m going to vote for Kerry Edwards and I’m not interested in any more of this. I’m not interested in who these other people are.’ He thought that there was a man named Kerry Edwards.”

      • Aug 10, 20116:20 pm
        by tarsier

        Reply

        That’s hilarious. Thanks for just making my day.

        • Aug 10, 20118:52 pm
          by Patrick Hayes

          Reply

          Have you read :07 Seconds or Less by Jack McCallum? If not, you should check it out. A lot of great Amar’e stories. Honestly, he said a lot of really dumb things throughout that book, but he did it in such a child-like way (and he really was pretty young during that season, 20 years old, I believe) that it was kind of charming.

  • Aug 10, 20113:53 pm
    by Eric

    Reply

    I think its funny everyone wants to jump on knight but this kid that played 12 games is suppose to be the best player in the draft LoL get off it I think knight is better than Irving

    • Aug 10, 20114:06 pm
      by Patrick Hayes

      Reply

      I wish people would read and actually comprehend what was being said before posting.

      No one in this thread has said Knight is a bad player. No one has said he was a bad pick. No one is “jumping on” Knight. But the fact is, he’s 19 and he’s still raw. The sky is the limit for him if his jumper gets more consistent and he cuts down on the turnovers. He’s given every indication that he’s smart enough and works hard enough to do those things, and every Piston fan hopes he’s able to do just that.

      But every draft is littered with players who have the kind of promise Knight does but, for whatever reason, aren’t able to do things like cut down their turnovers or improve their shot selection.

      If you watched Irving and Knight last year and didn’t come away thinking Irving was more advanced at this point in their careers, then you just don’t know basketball. Maybe Knight becomes an absolute beast and surpasses expectations. But, even if he only played in a handful of games, Irving proved he is currently a better shooter, better passer and less turnover prone than Knight.

      Also, if you think pro teams evaluate guys they consider in the lottery based solely on college games, that’s crazy as well. Cleveland worked out Knight and Irving individually, and obviously that didn’t do much to change their opinion of who the better prospect was.

      Again, this is not even me saying I think Knight is a bad player or pick. I actually like him a lot as a prospect and think he’s a high character guy. But Pistons fans have a seriously troubling problem of turning every young prospect into a MVP candidate. You saying that Knight is better than the No. 1 pick is setting the bar ridiculously high for Knight right off the bat.

    • Aug 10, 20115:46 pm
      by neutes

      Reply

      What evidence is there to suggest Knight will be better than Irving, visual or statistical? I’d put the odds of that happening at 0%. Irving plays with a lower center of gravity, is a better ball handler, is a better shooter, and has the ability to control his body after contact, which is why he’s so eager to take contact – look at his free throws per game. Knight plays more upright and stiff. He has a pretty floater, but it’s a necessity because he doesn’t have the ability to maintain control after contact so he pulls up before contact comes.

  • Aug 10, 20114:19 pm
    by Jason

    Reply

    Who cares what anyone thinks of Knight.  I just like the fact that we don’t have to even think about getting another point guard this offseason.  Hopefully not for a few years.  Now we just need TPrince to return at the 3 and Chandler to sign for the 5. Probably not happening but we still need a 3 and defensive stopper and rebounder.

    • Aug 10, 20114:54 pm
      by Birdman84

      Reply

      Yeah, there’s no way Chandler’s coming here. I hope Prince isn’t re-signed, either, as he sulked through most of last season.

      • Aug 10, 20115:57 pm
        by Laser

        Reply

        i’m as passionate about this team as it gets, and i sulked through most of last season too. i’d be extremely nervous about anybody associated with the team who didn’t sulk through most of last season.

        • Aug 11, 20118:38 am
          by Jason

          Reply

          I couldn’t stand last year either.  But I am not going to complain and get blinded by the results.  I think it was a just a bad year overall and really beleive our players are better than they performed. 

          • Aug 11, 20111:59 pm
            by Laser

            well, i’m sorry to say last year was not a fluke. i’m about to make a VERY important distinction that may help you understand the situation:
             
            these players ARE better individually than the sum of its parts– almost every last one of them! but that’s just the product of having a TERRIBLE team. just as the 2004 championship was a great team that was so much more than the individual parts, this is what it looks like when you put together one of the worst teams in history. none of these players complement each other, and that isn’t going to change without some serious roster tinkering. but the guys we need to ditch most are the ones it’s not going to be easy to unload. you could try this combination, or something close to it, for ten years and yield the same result. the fact that ben gordon, for instance, is better alone than he is in this system, is cold comfort. because you can’t ignore the context.
             
            why is this so hard for you to grasp? why do you consider the fact that rip and gordon look FIFTY times worse than they really are a GOOD thing? if either one could be traded for a useful piece, you’d be right that it’s not that bad, but they can’t. they just can’t. so this is a total nightmare.

          • Aug 11, 20113:26 pm
            by Jason

            You are not making sense and some of your statement is backing up what I believe in.  I have been repeatedly saying Pistons have good players just the wrong mix.  All we have to do is make a couple moves and we will be good. 

            Thats the only reason I comment.  I know we arent championship material and I know we are not close.  But I think we have good players and a bright future.  I think maybe 75% of the bad in the last few years was due to Davidson passing away and the sale of the team. 

            You are wrong about the Pistons!

          • Aug 11, 20114:09 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            “But I am not going to complain and get blinded by the results.” Yeah, why let actual results get in your way?

          • Aug 11, 20114:13 pm
            by Jason

            I just meant the result last year.  This year will show what I mean.

          • Aug 11, 20114:13 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            “but the guys we need to ditch most are the ones it’s not going to be easy to unload.”

            Would you agree those guys (Gordon, Villanueva and Maxiell) were easier to unload a year ago, before they well established their ability to play basketball had severely diminished?

          • Aug 11, 20115:14 pm
            by khandor

            @ Laser,
            re: “the fact that ben gordon, for instance, is better alone than he is in this system, is cold comfort. because you can’t ignore the context.”
            ————————–
            According to you:
            1. What specific “system” was used by John Kuester last season?
            2. What specific “system” has Lawrence Frank said the Pistons will be using next season?
            I agree 100% with the observation that “you can’t ignore the context.”

          • Aug 12, 20112:44 pm
            by Laser

            @jason: don’t tell me i don’t make sense. silliest shit i ever heard. just tune in whenever basketball resumes and you’ll see what i mean.
             
            @khandor: “system” is a generous description of anything this team’s done in the past three years. a better way to put it is “environment.” just talking about the personnel and how the offense is run. gordon would be a good scorer as a first or second option with starter’s minutes on a good team with good pick-setters and good passes. the pistons have offered him none of that, and until they do, he’s not going to come close to producing to his ability.

          • Aug 12, 20113:03 pm
            by khandor

            @ Laser,
            re: “@khandor: “system” is a generous description of anything this team’s done in the past three years. a better way to put it is “environment.” just talking about the personnel and how the offense is run. gordon would be a good scorer as a first or second option with starter’s minutes on a good team with good pick-setters and good passes. the pistons have offered him none of that, and until they do, he’s not going to come close to producing to his ability.”
            ————————–
            I agree with this specific comment, 100%.

        • Aug 11, 20114:10 pm
          by Dan Feldman

          Reply

          i’d be extremely nervous about anybody associated with the team who didn’t sulk through most of last season.” So you’re extremely nervous about guys like Will Bynum and Greg Monroe?

  • Aug 10, 20114:33 pm
    by MrHappyMushroom

    Reply

    This article was a fun read and I buy the basic premise that, knowing then what we know now, the future today looks less glum than the future did on July 9, 2009. But here’s my major promise with that premise:
     
    “No bad moves” is a very limiting criteria.  To use a really stupid analogy (it’s 3AM and I can’t sleep), if one were to inexplicably walk into a burning building, that would be considered a bad move.  Now, if it began to get hot, it would be sensible to open a cool drink.  (Good move.)  Turning on the TV would fall in the neutral category.  Grabbing the fire extinguisher would be a very good move, and could perhaps be a difference maker.  None of these are bad moves. Buuuuutttt…
     
    GET OUT OF THE FUCKIN’ BUILDING!
     
    And that, Joe has not done.  He’s essentially stood pat for the past two years (aside from drafting the players that he’s been entitled to draft and signing a couple of good bargain vets who, though they outplayed their contracts, were still essentially meaningless (in that the team won 30 games a year and none are likely to ever play on a Pistons’ team with a winning record).  But Joe has not gotten out of the fuckin’ buidling.
     
    He still has a glut of overpaid, underachieving combo guards.  He still has, “good move” Monroe accepted, almost nothing and no one in the front court who can contribute.  And I have no idea if Singler will be any good. But if the skeptics are right and a #35 (or so) pick ends up not contributing, I’ll end up being critical that he didn’t take a flyer on a big man who was available at that point.  If, for example, Jeremy Tyler ends up being really good, Singler was an awful mood.
     
    In summary, on July 9, 2009 the Pistons had a horribly unbalanced roster with too many combo guards and very little inside presence.  On August 11, 2011, the Pistons have a horribly unbalanced roster with the same combo guards and aside from drafting Monroe, there has been little serious attempt to add to the inside presence.

    • Aug 10, 20114:36 pm
      by Jason

      Reply

      You have no idea what you are talking about do you?

      • Aug 10, 20114:56 pm
        by Birdman84

        Reply

        It’s an analogy, man.

        Dumars:not making moves::anyone:staying in a burning building

      • Aug 10, 20115:59 pm
        by Laser

        Reply

        @jason: buddy, i haven’t a clue what you’re complaining about. the burning building analogy was phenomenal. joe’s been in such a clusterfuck of his own making that anything he does while sitting in his own pool of shit is just details.

        • Aug 11, 20118:41 am
          by Jason

          Reply

          Its a horrible analogy.  If he would of added the Davidson family chained the doors shut on him then yes it would make sense.

          My response makes sense.

          • Aug 11, 20112:12 pm
            by Laser

            ok i’ll meet you halfway. (you can’t say i’m not trying here.) karen davidson slid a chair in front of the door that dumars set on fire and also locked himself into from the inside.
             
            the bottom line is this: the door is “unlocked” now, so why bother making excuses for joe dumars when THE CHAINS ARE OFF? they’re off. let’s see what this asshole can do WITH HIS OWN MESS once the lockout is over. do you honestly think he can wheel and deal and trade rip/gordon/villa/max for something good? if so, i’m through talking to you. if not, then what’s the difference whether or not karen davidson slid a chair in front of a room joe locked himself into??
             
            JOE IS LOCKED IN BY HIS OWN BAD CONTRACTS. karen davidson is dead now. and yet i just know the excuses are still going to fly. give it up already.

          • Aug 11, 20113:28 pm
            by Jason

            Give what up buddy.  rip/gordon/charlie V/max are good players. Not great but good.

          • Aug 11, 20114:19 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            Jason, if Maxiell is a good player, can you give me examples of bad players?

          • Aug 11, 20114:25 pm
            by Jason

            So you think he is that bad then?  Why did the Lakers want him then?   He had nice stretches of solid play last year.  Sorry he doesn’t put up numbers so you can do your stat analysis.

          • Aug 11, 20115:22 pm
            by khandor

            Rip is a good Off Guard. Gordon is a good Combo Guard. Villanueva is a poor PF. Maxiell is an average PF.
            Dumars should not be trying to trade these players for a super-star, or a glut of very good players. Dumars should, however, gradually begin the process of re-tooling the Pistons for a slow climb back up the EC standings by slowing acquiring 1 or 2 good players a season, either, through the Draft, with good value trades, and select free agent signings. Anyone expecting a one-year miracle turn-around in Detroit is delusional.

          • Aug 11, 20115:27 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            OK, you got me, I have to ask.

            “Rip is a good Off Guard. Gordon is a good Combo Guard. Villanueva is a poor PF. Maxiell is an average PF.

            Dumars should not be trying to trade these players for a super-star, or a glut of very good players”

            Why not?

          • Aug 11, 20116:43 pm
            by brgulker

            Ben Gordon is an atrocious PG. The fact that you’ve been insisting otherwise only proves that you don’t ever actually watch the Pistons play. You simply develop opinions based on your “elite level” opinions, and then refuse to change them no matter what.

          • Aug 12, 20113:18 am
            by khandor

            @ Ben,
            Just because Ben Gordon has not performed at a level which is consistent with the production of a good back-up PG during his time with the Pistons and the Bulls this does not mean that he is incapable of playing this position effectively, if he is afforded the opportunity to perform in this role while playing for a coach other than Vinnie Del Negro, or John Kuester, in a different system than what was used by the Bulls and the Pistons, respectively.

          • Aug 12, 20113:28 am
            by khandor

            @ Dan,
            Because that type of mind-set would establish a quick-fix [unrealistic?] mentally for the Pistons organization which is wholly unproductive, if the long-term goal is to eventually be able to compete for and win another NBA Championship. In general, organizations of THAT ilk are simply not built with a quick-fix mentality.
             

          • Aug 12, 201112:13 pm
            by brgulker

            Ben Gordon has never, ever, ever played big minute at backup PG in the NBA.

            The reasons are obvious to anyone who watches him. He’s not a good ball handler. He’s not a good passer. He’s not a good playmaker, except for having the ability to get off his own jumpshot off the dribble.

            The fact that you insist otherwise time and again simply goes to show that you don’t actually watch him play basketball. NO ONE in the entire Pistons blogosphere or public media has ever argued that Ben Gordon at PG would be a good thing, because we actually do watch the games and take not of our players and their skillsets.

            BG is a nice fit next to a Derrick Rose, because BG isn’t responsible for playmaking in that scenario. BG is a terrible fit at backup PG next to any SG, because he doesn’t have the skills to make plays for the team.

            Also, the sky appears blue to the eyes of human beings. The desk upon which my computer rests is hard to the touch.  The Earth revolves around the sun in an elliptical orbit, and basketballs are spherical in shape and bounce when filled with air.

            Certain of these facts you will accept, because they’re confirmed by observation. Others of these facts you will deny, even though they’re clearly confirmed by observation.

            Guaransheed.

          • Aug 12, 20112:01 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            Khandor, one characteristic that defines EVERY championship team is it has superstars and/or very good players. If the Pistons can acquire players like that, they should.

          • Aug 12, 20113:13 pm
            by khandor

            @ Ben,
            According to you … Would Ben Gordon actually be a more or less effective player, as a PG, than BJ Armstrong, or Craig Hodges, or John Paxson, or Steve Kerr were for the Chicago Bulls alongside a player like Michael Jordan, operating within the context of the Triangle Offense for coach like Phil Jackson and a GM like Jerry Krause?
            If you do, then, I am sorry to say that I simply disagree with your perception of Ben Gordon’s actual skill-set, as a basketball player, and his character, as a person.

          • Aug 12, 20113:18 pm
            by khandor

            @ Dan,
            Agreed. However, the correct way to do THAT is not by trying to acquire superstar assets in return for other assets perceived to be of far less quality in the first place.

          • Aug 12, 20114:09 pm
            by brgulker

            @ khandor

            I’m pretty sure you’re a troll. This comment seals the deal.

            Jordan is the best SG to ever play the game. Of course if the Pistons had Michael Jordan in his prime on the roster right now Ben Gordon would be capable of filling the Steve Kerr role for the Pistons.

            But that argument is purely hypothetical and so incredibly ridiculous that it’s not worth considering. The Pistons don’t have MJ. They don’t run the triangle (and won’t under Frank).

            To say “Ben Gordon could play PG if he were playing next to Michael Jordan, one of the greatest of all time, and Scottie Pippen, also one of the greatest of all time at his position; therefore, he can play backup PG for the Pistons” is so utterly ridiculous that I can hardly believe anyone but a troll would post it.

          • Aug 12, 20114:11 pm
            by brgulker

            Agreed. However, the correct way to do THAT is not by trying to acquire superstar assets in return for other assets perceived to be of far less quality in the first place.

            Yesterday I walked into a Mercedes dealership and offered to trade them my 2003 Hyundai for a brand new Benz.

            No I didn’t, because that would be asinine.

          • Aug 13, 20111:50 am
            by khandor

            @ Ben,
            1. I am 100% sure that I am not a troll.
            Now, according to you …
            Which one of us actually has a better chance of being right in our perception?
            You who thinks that I am not really a fan of the Pistons organization? Or, me who knows that I really am a fan of the Pistons organization?
            Which one of us is simply making stuff up, based on little more than our own perception, rather the actual facts?
            2. You said that Ben Gordon does not have the ability to play PG effectively in the NBA. I said that, IMO, he has this ability, in the right situation. Then, I pointed to BJ Armstrong, Craig Hodges, John Paxson, and Steve Kerr as 4 examples of other very limited PGs who had a somewhat similar package of skills and attributes to Ben Gordon that were in fact able to succeed as a PG in the NBA … in a very special situation with the Chicago Bulls. The facts involved with this very special situation do not invalidate the correctness of my earlier observation.
            I could easily give you another example, if you’d prefer, but something tells me that you would simply find another perceived flaw in it to confirm the rightness of your own perception re: Ben Gordon’s inability to succeed as a PG, based on how he has played for Chicago and Detroit, according to “his individual production numbers”.
            3. re: Mercedes vs Hyundai
            Did you even read the original comment [i.e. mine] and reply [i.e. Dan's] posted at Aug-11-5:22 and 5:27, respectively.
            If you did, then, you should already know that I do not believe in proposing a trade of a Hynudai in return for a Mercedes. Not because it’s considered asinine … heck, the Clippers actually traded a 2nd Round Pick for Marcus Camby! … but, because what usually works better is to propose: 1. A trade of a Nyundai for a Cavalier, or. 2. A trade of a Porsche for a Porsche, or c. A trade of a Mercedes for Hyundai.
            PS. What Dan had alluded to originally was somehow being hopeful of a future Pistons’ trade which attempted to move a Hyundai in return for a Mercedes.

  • Aug 10, 20114:46 pm
    by Danny

    Reply

    McGrady a good move? That to me, was a bad move. The guy gave zero effort on D, which is a bad example for the entire team when he’s a former ‘star’. Oh, but he scored 8pts a game. And not getting anything for Prince or Hamilton was a mistake to me. This article should read more like ‘Joe Dumars hasnt made things too much worse in more than 2 years’.

    • Aug 10, 20114:55 pm
      by Patrick Hayes

      Reply

      If you look at Synergy, McGrady had a really solid defensive season.

      • Aug 10, 20114:59 pm
        by Danny

        Reply

        Not sure what that is, but it must be flawed. Every game I watched (not every one) he was poor, and really gave next to no effort. Unless he decided to play in games I wasnt watching, then that Synergy is probably flawed. What does it consider for defensive rating?

        • Aug 10, 20115:08 pm
          by Patrick Hayes

          Reply

          It tracks every single offensive and defensive possession for every single player in the league, among other things.

          Players Tracy McGrady was defending this season shot 36 percent when he was defending them. If that’s ‘no effort’ defense, I will take that.

          • Aug 11, 201112:11 pm
            by Danny

            I cant argue a whole lot since I only watched a chunk of games. But still, those stats dont mean much. He played about 20 min. a game, mostly against back-ups, right? I dont recall the types of players he was guarding on a nightly basis, but maybe my criticism is more harsh since Ive been playing the game most of my life, not that others on here havent. I distinctly remember him not even trying or contesting shots pretty consistently though. Not quite the level of CV, but still at a level I would find unacceptable were I HC.

          • Aug 11, 20111:03 pm
            by Patrick Hayes

            No one is saying McGrady is a defensive stopper. But, in the role he played as a backup wing and sometimes PG, he was good defensively.

            As someone pointed out below, McGrady moves with ease. His expression rarely changes. Sometimes, I think those things are mistaken for lack of effort. But basketball IQ-wise, McGrady was arguably the smartest player the Pistons had last season (Prince is the only other guy in the convo). He plays effective defense not by running around like a madman, getting passing lanes, etc. He’s effective because he forces players he’s guarding to do things they’re uncomfortable with and he has long arms that bother shooters.

          • Aug 11, 20115:10 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            I’ll take Prince in the highest-basketball-IQ contest, for what it’s worth. Also, don’t forget about McGrady’s quick hands. He got steals before his man realized McGrady was going in for the swipe.

        • Aug 10, 20115:51 pm
          by neutes

          Reply

          Mcgrady was one of the better defenders on the team. I’m not sure there is all that great of a correlation between effort and defense, even though everyone seems to think defense is an effort related part of the game. Bynum can jump up and down and run around like a chicken with his head cut off, but that doesn’t make him a good defender. Gordon can fight all he wants on the block to no avail because he’s simply undersized. Effort might make them better defenders, but it certainly isn’t going to make them good defenders. Some guys just do not have the ability to be good defenders, and some guys like Mcgrady can play above average defense with limited motion simply because his anticipation and knowledge of the game is better.
           
           

        • Aug 10, 20116:03 pm
          by Laser

          Reply

          @Danny: i hesitate to defend any of these non-moves, and i contend that mcgrady was probably a “bad” move in that he took minutes away from real pistons on an already-overcrowded perimeter in a wasted season. however, t-mac played good defense. not sure how you could have paid any attention at all and missed that.

          • Aug 10, 20118:49 pm
            by Patrick Hayes

            “i contend that mcgrady was probably a “bad” move in that he took minutes away from real pistons on an already-overcrowded perimeter”

            Making the minimum and playing with basically one good leg, McGrady was better than Gordon and Hamilton this season and he proved to be a more adept point guard than Stuckey. Those things were obvious, and I think you acknowledged as much throughout the season as well.

            So it’s true, McGrady probably was a one-year Piston. But, if in that one year, he exposed to an organization that thought Ben Gordon and Rip Hamilton were worth a combined $24ish million a year and that Rodney Stuckey was a future star that those beliefs were not so sound, then I’d say he wasn’t a wasted signing.

          • Aug 11, 201112:19 pm
            by Danny

            @Laser; I agree about him taking minutes away as not being good for the team, and was actually thinking that but his D is what I wanted to point out. Like I told Patrick, I didnt watch even half the games last year, so my perspective on his whole year isnt great. But in games I did watch there were plays where he gave little effort. Now if thats okay because he gives great effort on others then thats your opinion. But like I told Patrick, to me, he was giving an unacceptable effort overall had I been the HC. Maybe his leg had something to do with it, I dont know. I play the game with a lot of passion. I scream at guys I dont even know when playing pick-up games if I see them not trying. Maybe my idea of defense is different.

          • Aug 11, 20112:33 pm
            by Laser

            @hayes: dude, this is starting to stress me out a little. maybe one day you and i will meet for a beer and have a face-to-face to discuss these kinds of nitpicks that are tough to tackle across the infotubes…
             
            1) it doesn’t take an effective season from tracy mcgrady to show anyone with eyes in their head that joe overvalued gordon, hamilton and stuckey to an outrageous extent. at no point in time did any off them appear to be worth the commitments this organization made to them (current contracts in the cases of gordon/hamilton contracts, and all manner of commitments to stuckey). will bynum was already making all three of them look like assholes. tayshaun, too. t-mac showed us nothing about the other three that we didn’t already know. if you thought rip was EVER worth $12.65 million a year to ANYONE, then god bless you and god help you. ditto for ben and his absurdly rich deal, and stuckey and one of the worst attempts in league history at building around a mediocre player.
             
            2) looking at the big picture, as i often do, you can’t just look at how tracy played in a vacuum and make decisions about whether or not he was a worthwhile acquisition. yes, he outplayed stuckey, rip and gordon. but there are only so many minutes to go around. we had too many perimeter players to begin with, which led to inconsistent minutes, roles and performances. t-mac played something like 1800 minutes over the course of the season. if those minutes had been distributed among other players, it stands to reason that their performances would have been slightly better. in the case of austin daye, if he played more than 20 minutes a game over the course of the season, we might actually have a starting caliber small forward. instead, we don’t know what he is. gordon and rip would have had more time to play together and try to establish some kind of chemistry. stuckey would have been forced to learn on the job more and develop some playmaking ability.
             
            the point is, what tracy brought to the court is basically irrelevant. it was a wasted season, our third consecutive waste of a season. the team accomplished nothing, and the only thing they have to show for the acquisition of tracy mcgrady is having slipped maybe one or two picks down in the lottery. the fact that you work so hard to justify a move like this is troubling. there are too many factors involved to judge this move favorably on any basis besides enjoying watching tracy play.

          • Aug 11, 20112:42 pm
            by Laser

            @danny: he was just an objectively good defender. he didn’t move that well throughout the season, but he had some real bounce in his legs at times. the things he had going for him were good hands and instincts. he was crafty. he had quick hands on defense, got his share of steals and was generally disruptive. on offense, even when he was standing still and holding the ball for half the shot clock, he still made the right play on a regular basis. over the course of a play, when the ball touched his hands something good usually happened. take my word for it; i think he was probably a bad signing.
             
            now, if it was possible to teach instincts, or if i thought his playmaking ability rubbed off on anyone, i think there would be a much stronger case that he was a good signing. but i don’t think he really did a thing for us.

          • Aug 11, 20112:53 pm
            by Patrick Hayes

            “the point is, what tracy brought to the court is basically irrelevant.”

            “now, if it was possible to teach instincts, or if i thought his playmaking ability rubbed off on anyone, i think there would be a much stronger case that he was a good signing.”

            Really? You don’t think McGrady had a positive impact on, for example, Monroe’s development? I think it’s no coincidence that Monroe got more opportunities on offense when McGrady’s role increased because McGrady looked for Monroe a lot. Getting easy buckets meant his confidence grew, his confidence growing led to more minutes, more minutes led to more development for the team’s most important young player.

            I just can’t buy an argument that McGrady getting minutes this season was a “waste.” We clearly saw a difference in Monroe’s touches when he played with McGrady vs. other guards. If Monroe had played all season without McGrady and got two or three or four fewer shots a game as a result, I would say that would be a net negative.

             

             

          • Aug 11, 20115:36 pm
            by khandor

            @ Laser,
            re: #2
            1. What led to the inconsistent minutes was NOT that “there were too many perimeter players to begin with”.
            Good coaches know how to set a proper rotation, regardless how many perimeter players a team has.
            Conversely, bad coaches do not know how to set a proper rotation. Period.
            Unfortunately, the Pistons have had a bad coach each of the last 3 seasons.
            2. In general, Gordon and Hamilton should not be used together … unless, of course, Gordon is playing PG and Hamilton is playing OG, in an offensive system which de-emphasizes the individual play-making ability of whomever happens to be used as the team’s PG. Coaches who do not realize this one their own should not be considered in the elite category.

          • Aug 12, 201112:23 am
            by Laser

            @hayes: the one area where i think he actually helped was with getting monroe touches. but i don’t know if will bynum wouldn’t have done the same with extended PT, or if stuckey would have finally felt the pressure and stepped up to the challenge of running an offense without any safety net (though i have my hunches). and it can’t be ignored that whatever he did for monroe came at great expense. 1800 minutes is a lot of minutes for a perimeter with nowhere enough PT to go around.
             
            @khandor: nope. sorry. red f*cking auerbach couldn’t have managed a rotation that consisted of tracy mcgrady, rip hamilton, tayshaun prince, ben gordon, rodney stuckey, austin daye and will bynum. never happen. give it up.

          • Aug 12, 20113:55 am
            by khandor

            @ Laser,
            IMO, two examples of what Red Auerbach [or any other good head coach] would have done with the collection of guards and forwards on last year’s Pistons is the following:
            OPTION 1 – 8-Man Rotation with 3 Principal Bigs [i.e. Monroe, Wallace and either Wilcox or Maxiell]
            1st Unit:
            1. Used Stuckey as his Starting PG. 2. Used Hamilton as his Starting OG. 3. Used Prince as his Starting SF.
            2nd Unit:
            4. Used McGrady as his Primary Back-up PG and his Primary Back-up SF. 5. Used Gordon as his Primary Back-up OG. Reserve:
            6. Used Daye as his Secondary Back-up SF [getting limited PT].
            Out:
            7. Sat Bynum down on the bench.
            OPTION 2 – 9-Man Rotation with 3 Principal Bigs [i.e. Monroe, Wallace, and either Wilcox or Maxiell]
            1st Unit:
            1. Used Stuckey as his Starting PG. 2. Used Hamilton as his Starting OG. 3. Used Prince as his Starting SF.
            2nd Unit:
            4. Used McGrady as his Primary Back-up PG. 5. Used Gordon as his Primary Back-up OG. 6. Used Daye as his Primary Back-up SF
            Out:
            7. Sat Bynum down on the bench.
            IMO, Villanueva and Bynum would have been the two Pistons who a good coach would have kept out of his rotation … for the accrued benefits to the other players, and the team as a whole.

          • Aug 12, 20112:49 pm
            by Laser

            i could type a lengthy response to what you’ve said, but each rotation you’ve described would post a losing record. if you think otherwise, god bless your heart.

          • Aug 12, 20112:49 pm
            by Laser

            i could type a lengthy response to what you’ve said, but i’ll leave it at: each rotation you’ve described would post a losing record. if you think otherwise, god bless your heart.

        • Aug 10, 20116:23 pm
          by tarsier

          Reply

          Everyone has always claimed that TMac didn’t look like he was putting in much effort. Maybe they’ve all been right but I am prone to thinking that it has more to do with the fact that he moves smoothly and has a sleepy expression. Because honestly, how can you tell how much effort he is putting in unless he has a baseline to compare to which looks much higher intensity.

          • Aug 11, 20112:47 pm
            by Laser

            nope. it was his legs. he was still rehabbing well into the season, and there were only a few occasions where he really looked like he had life in his legs. some time after the season was already lost, he was getting really impressive elevation on his shots and finishing some nice alley-oops. when the season started, he looked like he should not have been out there. it’s got nothing to do with smoothness and even less to do with his lazy eye.

  • Aug 10, 20114:50 pm
    by Danny

    Reply

    I did like the Frank hiring; no one can argue Monroe was a GREAT pick; and I love the Knight pick. This article is still laughable IMO. Why not just write about those past couple moves and how if we can find a way to cut a little fat off the team, we can contend for the playoffs quicker than some think?

  • Aug 10, 20115:26 pm
    by Laser

    Reply

    dude, this is INSANE. it’s hard to figure out where to even start picking this apart. i’ll keep it brief, because i hardly think this this should be dignified at all. this whole thing just comes off as more sad attempts at dumars apologist chatter.
     
    1) the man’s hands have been tied for the last two years, and he’s hardly been allowed to do anything at all. like, anything at all except the most basic, inexpensive roster moves possible. the kind of moves with no financial risk whatsoever, so it’s hard to really mess anything up.
     
    2) convenient how we start at chris wilcox, the first justifiable move he made since signing dyess in 2005, but: A) the wilcox signing is INEXTRICABLY linked to the dumping of afflalo and amir johnson, since wilcox was signed with the money they saved by giving away those two guys for nothing at all. in effect, they traded afflalo, johnson and walter sharpe (and paid half of fabricio oberto’s salary) for wilcox; B) wilcox was a total non-factor in his first season here. looked like a total bust, was no better than amir johnson, and made the loss of afflalo sting that much more. so we paid $6 million for about half a season of solid play by wilcox that couldn’t make any difference this season. neutral move at absolute best, and when you consider points A and B, we’d all be better off if wilcox was never a piston.
     
    3) as any regular reader should have expected, you’ve given joe “credit” for moves that were more happenstance than anything. ben wallace is one of these moves. it’s sort of a gray area. ben wanted to come here. did joe have anything to do with this? certainly, much earlier in the decade, given their history. but if joe wasn’t the team’s GM does ben still choose to come here to finish his career? nobody knows. ben might not even know for sure. i don’t think joe had to do a shred of convincing to get ben to come here. it was just a minimum salary pickup for a guy who probably just wanted to finish his career here. similar story with tracy. it’s tough to judge that move period, but the story i heard is that tracy’s agent contacted the pistons. he was a minimum salary, and it’s highly debatable whether it was even a good signing. statistics-wise, he was a productive player for us, but he didn’t get us over any hump, and he used up minutes on a desperately overcrowded perimeter in a wasted season, most notable getting in the way of austin daye, an ACTUAL PISTON, who’s never been tested in two full seasons and still needs as many minutes as we can spoonfeed him to develop. he was also part of the boycott, and none of us knows how much he contributed to locker room problems.
     
    4) i’m making this a separate point because it can’t possibly be emphasized enough: greg monroe and brandon knight are BOTH neutral moves, because 100% of carbon based life forms with the same options available make the same pick. joe dumars could not have gotten this pick wrong. period. monroe was the pick. you can’t win this fight with someone who understands how much of a certainty it was that monroe doesn’t slip past us. every bit as certain as lebron going #1 in 2003. no sense with hypotheticals about if we had a different pick. we had #7 and monroe was an absolute lock. ed davis’s grandmother as GM still drafts greg monroe with #7.
     
    5) i’m not sure how chucky atkins was a “neutral” pickup when it was widely understood that he was a veteran leader in the locker room (i don’t recall any locker room strife or practice boycotts that season), and he was our starting point guard during the last stretch where this team looked the least bit redeemable. shit, they were even a bit exciting during that 5 game win streak all those years ago. i don’t see how tracy qualifies as a good move if this is neutral. seems kind of arbitrary.
     
    6) joe cut deron washington prematurely. he could have waited several months to cut washington without owing him another penny. then the injuries struck, and washington could have proved very useful. at the very least, he may have kept some of our injured players from coming back too soon and further injuring himself. he cut washington to have some flexibility with the open roster spot, but that was never used, and i believe he could have waited until january to cut washington if he ended up wanting to fill that roster spot. by every standard that your list seems to employ, this was a “bad” move.
     
    7) yes, of course joe needs a big pat on the back for firing kuester. (groan)
     
    8) there’s no telling what joe would have done with his latest coaching hire if the choice was his alone. i doubt woodson even gets that second interview with “the bobs” if joe wasn’t pulling for woodson. there were plenty of reports he wanted woodson, and woodson sure fit the mold of the last two hires, which were all joe. yeah, so let’s just give joe all the credit for this one too. why not??
     
    9) dumars sure TRIED to make a bad move– a horrendous one actually– when he tried to trade rip and a pick to cleveland in exchange for humiliation and regret. and what about all the non-moves he could have made but didn’t? it’s obvious that some people, feldman among them, will give joe as much credit as humanly possible for anything and everything, and make every excuse for his mistakes. the horrendousness of a GM must be judged by moves and non-moves alike. allowing tayshaun to walk away for absolutely nothing must certainly count against him if it happens. and so on…
     
    this entire exercise was ridiculous. joe doesn’t need any more apologists.

    • Aug 10, 20115:27 pm
      by Laser

      Reply

      and yes, for me this was brief. ask anyone.

    • Aug 10, 20115:57 pm
      by neutes

      Reply

      “9) dumars sure TRIED to make a bad move– a horrendous one actually– when he tried to trade rip and a pick to cleveland in exchange for humiliation and regret.”

      Whew.
       
      I’m not sure Feldman was trying to make any sort of argument that Dumars has been a good GM the last two years as opposed to just pointing out that he hasn’t screwed up royally. But if he was trying to make that point I’d say you made a pretty entertaining counterpoint.

      • Aug 10, 20116:10 pm
        by Laser

        Reply

        1) thanks for the compliment. i try to entertain while i open minds and hearts.
         
        2) feldman doesn’t have an argument at all. it’s just bogus dumars apologist drivel. it’s a non-article with no real arguments to make joe look like less of a disaster. joe wasn’t allowed to do much of anything for two years, so it would have been hard to screw anything up royally. that nixed rip trade sure would have been a start! (who needs next year’s first rounder anyways with this inspiring collection of talent, right??) the broader point is that joe made such a mess of this team that he couldn’t even free up any flexibility. so yeah, he’s going to be in something of a holding pattern until those mistakes just go away on their own, which they eventually will, along with most of the pistons’ fans and what little remains of joe’s credibility.

        • Aug 10, 20118:45 pm
          by Patrick Hayes

          Reply

          It’s unfair to call it an apologist article. It wasn’t an apologist article. I didn’t see one line in there where Feldman said Dumars has done a good job over the last two years.

          In fact, this is right in the intro: “That doesn’t change the fact that Dumars got the Pistons into this mess, and it doesn’t change the fact that Dumars hasn’t made the Pistons relevant again yet.”

          I know you’ve conceded the fact that there were probably very few moves that Dumars could make over the last two years. He couldn’t take on long-term salary and no team was going to give salary relief to absorb any of Detroit’s lousy contracts. Those things made trades or signing free agents nearly impossible.

          But, within those financial constraints, I think it’s fair to say that Dumars has found an adequate amount of production through veteran FAs like Wallace, McGrady, Wilcox and Atkins. As I said in another comment, that doesn’t mean much when your team sucks overall, but in a couple years if the team is better, being able to find that kind of value for minimal money is a much more important skill.

          • Aug 11, 201112:04 am
            by Laser

            my complaint about the article is mostly that it’s insane. it’s absurd to expect article called “joe dumars hasn’t made a bad move in two years” not to be taken as apologist hogwash. the evaluations of his moves were set to a vague and subjective standard, and even by that cloudy standard some of the moves he made were certainly bad. a good portion of the list is highly debatable at least.
             
            plus, a line must be drawn somewhere to determine whether a non-move must be considered a move. the two that spring to mind were both offers from the celtics. rip, tayshaun and stuckey for rondo and allen. that would have been a COUP, but dumars dismissed it out of hand. saying “no” was a bad move, because that would have fixed half of our problems instantly. to a lesser extent, they offered big baby for maxiell. at the time i thought it was a push and was fine with maxiell, but it would have been a major upgrade. say what you want about big baby, but he would help this team. probably be a starter last season. max can’t crack the rotation on a good day, and his name comes up frequently as a major drag on the books.
             
            also, i have a problem with the assumption that “production” is the ultimate goal. if tracy gets you four extra wins but you still miss the playoffs badly. so the final result of this signing is that you’ve taken minutes away from players who are ACTUAL PISTONS, who were starved for PT already. by the last third of the season, even the pistons admitted that it was purely a numbers game and they had to cut one of our seven (7) perimeter players out of the rotation, for crying out loud! so now we have a dearth of talent at small forward, and we have no idea how much we can count on our third year almost-lottery pick.
             
            but god, this notion that dumars’s ability not to screw up too badly once he already drove the team into the ground so it has nowhere to go but down… it’s just excuses. so ben wallace came back on the cheap. big deal. t-mac reached out to the team and they gave him a minimum deal. bravo. moves like this may or may not be helping to keep us on the mediocrity treadmill, but they don’t need to be applauded.

          • Aug 11, 201112:20 am
            by khandor

            @ Laser,
            re: “rip, tayshaun and stuckey for rondo and allen. that would have been a COUP, but dumars dismissed it out of hand. saying “no” was a bad move, because that would have fixed half of our problems instantly.”
            ————————–
            Please explain how it is that you think that specific trade proposal would qualify as a “coup” for the Pistons, since it would have instantly solved half of Detroit’s problems.

          • Aug 11, 20118:48 am
            by tarsier

            @laser
            I thnk the reason for th title is mostly that it is provocative and attention getting. Taken alone, it would be “apologist drivel.” But the content of the article shows that this one isn’t really. The problem is primarily that it doesn’t rate the obvious moves that weren’t made.
            Take the TMac signing. I loved it. And then I was very happy that TMac was surpassing expectations. But then I wanted Dumars to trade TMac to another team for a pick or something. Prince, McGrady, and Stuckey all appeared last year to be assets with more value to a contender than to a rebuilding team. But none were moved. I guess Ben Wallace fits that description too but it would have been an a$$hole move for Joe to trade him. I know Dumars had his hands somewhat tied. And so I accept not being able to get fair value for Stuckey. But the other two have basically used up all the value they had to the Pistons anyway. So if he could have gotten anything for them, it would have been a good move. And I am sure some other GM would have given something for them.

          • Aug 11, 20113:08 pm
            by Laser

            @khandor: if dumars takes boston’s offer from a year or so ago, we part with stuckey, rip and tayshaun. in return, we get rajon rondo and ray allen. if you’re asking me to explain why this would have been incredible for us, i’m at a loss for words. i’ll explain anyways.
             
            the way i see it, from a perspective purely based on personnel, the team’s three major problems lately have been: (a) too many shooting guards; (b) a lack of point play; and (c) a thin front court.
             
            this trade would have given us an all-star quality point guard. i mean, rondo is clearly the best player involved in this trade. ray allen might be the second best, if it’s not tayshaun at their respective ages. it’s certainly debatable. the move also alleviates the logjam at shooting guard. joe tried to give away a big first round pick just to be rid of rip, and i’m still not sure where stuckey fits into this team that was originally built to support him. so both of those guys are gone. our back court would have consisted of rondo and allen, with gordon coming off the bench. and as an added bonus, ray allen was on a $20 million expiring contract. that represents a hell of a lot of flexibility. you can turn that into plenty of front court help. why do i have to explain any of this?
             
            @tarsler: taken any way, it’s certainly apologist drivel. it employs an imaginary standard geared towards making joe dumars look competent. you said it yourself. and i’m sorry, but non-moves are moves, because any decision is a move. the offers he passed up on would have gone a long way towards crawling this team out of the hole he dug. saying “no” to the celtics was a move, and a bad one. there’s so much wrong with this article i don’t know where to start. it could very possibly be the worst piece of sports journalism i’ve read outside of bleacher report.

          • Aug 11, 20113:15 pm
            by Laser

            the genesis of this article feels like, “let’s create a bogus standard by which we can judge the last two seasons of joe’s career in the most favorable light possible and cobble together an article to make him look better.” simple as that. it’s garbage, there’s a world of room for debate on plenty of these, and even by the convenient and arbitrary standard by which feldman is “judging” these moves, some of them were bad.
             
            this is the kind of crap feldman has conditioned me to expect, given his absurdly pro-dumars slant, but articles like this go a long way towards destroying whatever relative objectivity he can claim as a journalist. this article is indefensible and utterly useless for purposes of information or analysis. as a sensationalist piece designed to stir shit up and look silly in the process, it gets the job done. that’s as far as it goes.

          • Aug 11, 20115:14 pm
            by Dan Feldman

            1. That Boston trade was offered more than two years ago:

            http://sports.yahoo.com/nba/news?slug=aw-celticspistons062209

            2. At the time, nobody thought the Pistons should do it, except maybe Gulker.

          • Aug 11, 20115:49 pm
            by khandor

            @ Laser,
            So, if I understand you properly, you think:
            1. Because Rajon Rondo has played like “the best player involved with this specific trade proposal” during his NBA career FOR THE BOSTON CELTICS … along with teammates like Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, Ray Allen and Kendrick Perkins … you BELIEVE this qualifies as legitimate evidence he would be able to continue to perform at this same level of excellence should he happen to get traded to the Pistons with Hamilton, Prince and Stuckey going to Boston? … AND taht this would necessarily translate into a better TEAM PERFORMANCE, overall, for Detroit, over an extended period of time?
            2. Ray Allen, at a cost of $20+ M per season, is a better off-guard than Rip Hamilton, at a similar dollar-value and length of contract.
            If this is, in fact, correct, then, perhaps, you’re right; you don’t really need to explain your rationale any further.
            Suffice to say, I disagree with your appraisal of the 5 players in question … and their specific value across the NBA.

          • Aug 12, 201112:30 am
            by Laser

            @khandor: i’ve got a good feeling i’m probably through dealing with you, but let’s have one last pointless interaction where you don’t know what you’re talking about.
             
            1) rondo was the best player in the trade. period. boston makes him better, but he makes them better too. a point guard makes everyone better. rondo could make every single member of this team look much better than they have the last few years. he has playmaking instincts and deception. i’m sure he doesn’t need to be surrounded by all-stars to have an impact.
             
            2) this is where i want to slap you in the face. rip was on his current contract, owed something like $50 million over four years, and has since become a major albatross. allen was on the final year of his contract and was owed $20 million, representing almost the exact amount of financial flexibility that allen iverson did the year before.

          • Aug 12, 20114:41 am
            by khandor

            @ Laser,
            1. So, basically, according to you, Rajon Rondo is the best player in the proposed deal … because you are saying that he is the best player in the proposed deal AND because good Point Guards, in general, have the ability to make their teammates better, and vice versa, if their teammates also happn to be VERY GOOD teammates already [say, like 3 future HOFers]. Correct?
            If this is an accurate interpretation on my part, then, please explain to me the reason Rajon Rondo did not perform as one of the very best PGs in the entire NBA when he played for the Celtics and there was no Kevin Garnett or Ray Allen on the team’s roster? [... in which case, the Celtics' roster at the time actually resembles what the Pistons' roster may have looked like next season if the trade you mentioned actually took place this past spring. Off the top of my head, I can't quite recall exactly how many games those versions of the Celtics actually won when Rondo first came into the league. Perhaps you can, however?]
            The “straw that stirs the drink” for the recent editions of the Boston Celtics is none other than [1A] Danny Ainge, then, [1B] Kevin Garnett, then, in order of importance, [2] Paul Pierce, [3] Ray Allen, and then [4] Rajon Rondo … whose individual strengths I happen to like a great deal, but whose individual weaknesses are also covered up adroitly by the highly effective work … when healthy … of his aging – and, yet, still – superbly talented teammates, and his authentic elite level head coach.
            FWIW, know as well that I liked Rondo a great deal when he was coming out of Kentucky, while many other NBA observers thought that the C’s had wasted a draft pick on a kid who did not fit the standard mold of a top flight PG in the NBA. [Hmmm ... come to think of it, you might already know a current UK PG product who others in the on-line hoops community are also doubting has what it takes to excel as a PG in the NBA because he doesn't quite fit the prototype based on his numbers/play in the NCAA.]
            2. Yes, indeed, Rip’s contract length does call for him to eventually receive more money from his employer than does that of Ray Allen for next season.
            a. And, if this next season is, in fact, completely wiped out, then, what assets exactly would you expect the Pistons to receive, in terms of compensation, if/when he chooses not to re-sign with Detroit during the summer of 2012? or, in lieu of somehow being able to maintain unused cap space on the team’s payroll for the 2012-2013 campaign, what specific UFA[s] would you suggest the Pistons target to acquire in the summer of 2012 to replace the production of both Rip Hamilton and Ray Allen from their future line-up?
            b. By “become a major albatross”, do you mean like [for example] that the contracts of Rashard Lewis, Gilbert Arenas and Hedo Turkoglu have been perceived to be by the fans of the Magic, Wizards, and Raptors, over the course of the last 2 seasons? [... which eventually proved to be very little impediment, whatsoever, to their respective teams, each of which was in fact able to execute a viable trade for their perceived-to-be "bad contract" player during the last 12 months.]
            3. If the history of the NBA … and NA pro sports league, in general … has taught us anything at all … it is that ANYBODY can indeed be traded, regardless of their perceived status by the games fans.

          • Aug 12, 201112:16 pm
            by brgulker

            If this is an accurate interpretation on my part, then, please explain to me the reason Rajon Rondo did not perform as one of the very best PGs in the entire NBA when he played for the Celtics and there was no Kevin Garnett or Ray Allen on the team’s roster?

            Do you know what a logical fallacy is?

          • Aug 12, 20112:54 pm
            by Laser

            god, am i allowed to call someone an idiot here? just once? please. let me know. i really want to do it, but i don’t want it to be removed for being abusive. incidentally…
             
            RONDO WAS YOUNG AND DEVELOPING BEFORE RONDO AND ALLEN CAME ALONG. PLAYERS TAKE TIME TO DEVELOP AND DO SO AT DIFFERENT RATES. YOU ARE INSUFFERABLE.

          • Aug 12, 20112:56 pm
            by Laser

            obviously (to every living soul on the planet besides khandor, i’m guessing), i meant to say “before KG and allen came along.” see what you made me do?



            INSUFFERABLE.

          • Aug 12, 20113:55 pm
            by khandor

            @ Laser,
            Insufferable? :-)
            If I understand you correctly … Because Rondo is no longer in the “young and still developing” category he would, therefore, be able to positively effect the performance of his prospective teammates in Detroit, albeit with no Stuckey, Prince or Hamilton on the Pistons’ roster? … with your ‘evidence’ being the supposed maturation Rondo has demonstrated during the last few seasons while playing with future HOFers like Garnett, Pierce, and Allen?
            Look, please do not get the wrong impression, re: what I think of Rajon Rondo. I think that he is a very good PG in the NBA. That said … He is simply not in the same class, however, as other top PGs in the league today – e.g. Derrick Rose, Deron Williams, Chris Paul, Russell Westbrook – if YOU happen to remove him from his current environment, surrounded by 3 teammates the calibre of Garnett, Pierce and Allen [in addition to having Perkins on his team before the end of last season]. Evidence of the rightness of my perception, in this regard? A. When Garnett was injured, how far were the Celtics able to go in the playoffs? B. When Perkins was injured, were the Celtics able to beat the Lakers in the NBA Finals? C. When Perkins was traded, how far did the Celtics go in the playoffs? D. When Rose, Westbrook, Billups, Curry and Rondo were all trying out for last summer’s USA National Team, prior to the 2010 FIBA Men’s World Championship, and the coaches had the opportunity to keep Mr. Rondo on the squad, did they choose to do that, or not? [IMO, what happened, instead, was that Mr. Rondo, conveniently, was allowed to gracefully depart from their team's camp due to the sudden existence of "other urgent personal business", at a point when the coaches of that team determined he was not a better fit for that ALL-STAR SQUAD, in comparison with the other PGs they had access to as well.
            Rondo's individual game is solid ... but, do not make the mistake of thinking that he is capable of vastly improving the individual game's of his prospective teammates in the NBA, or the overall team's game, for an outfit like the Pistons have at present.
            2. If you are some who really believes that "players take time to develop", in specific environments in the NBA, then this should mean that you are more than happy to wait on a prospect like Rodney Stuckey, as well. Are you willing to wait for that?
            [Because it does not seem to me as though you are.]

          • Aug 12, 20113:57 pm
            by khandor

            @ Ben,
            Yes, I do. :-)

      • Aug 11, 20114:52 pm
        by Dan Feldman

        Reply

        Don’t forget that the pick included in the Rip-to-Cleveland trade was lottery protected.

    • Aug 11, 20114:50 pm
      by Dan Feldman

      Reply

      1. So you’re willing to give Dumars a pass because his hands were tied, right?

      2. Look around the league at players in comparable roles (Kwame Brown, Johan Petro). Wilcox is better and made less money.

      3. I also don’t know Dumars’ specific role in getting Wallace, but before he signed with Detroit, he said he already made up his mind to retire. 

      4. Well done on just completely ignoring my argument. If the Pistons drafted Monroe with the No. 6 pick, you’d be saying the exact same thing.

      5. Chucky Atkins played 644 minutes in 40 games (11 starts). McGrady played 1,686 minutes in 72 games (39 games).

      6. If Washington had gotten hurt, I’m pretty sure the Pistons would’ve owed him a full season’s salary. He wasn’t worth that risk.

      7. You continue to give Dumars no credit for his good moves and crucify him for his bad moves. It’s no wonder you think so poorly of him. 

      8. The Pistons hired Lawrence Frank. Dumars is their general manager. He was obviously on board with the hiring, even if he wasn’t pushing for Frank initially.

      9. Prince hasn’t walked away for nothing. If he does, I’ll write about that.

      • Aug 12, 201112:35 am
        by Laser

        Reply

        sigh. no, no. you’re right. dumars is great. everything he ever did wrong is someone else’s fault and/or must be viewed through some weird prism or other. i should probably start coming up with my own excuses for him…

  • Aug 10, 20115:31 pm
    by Alex

    Reply

    Seems like your way of measuring whether a move is good or not is pretty short-sighted and based just on salary.  For instance, while Wilcox, Ben Wallace and TMac were signed to reasonable contracts, their playing time significantly cut into minutes for younger long-term players like Monroe, CV, Stuckey, BG & Bynum.  

    Even if say one (rightly) thinks CV sucks, he has shown he can score 14+ points if given minutes, and the league has shown that they’re willing to take chances on scorers even if they have no court vision and play no defense (see Denver signing Al Harrington last year to a 5-yr contract after he played CV-style in NYC).  Meaning, there’d be possible opportunities to trade him, versus right now, even David Kahn wouldn’t touch him.  Also, if his shortcomings make him even worse than Wilcox/Wallace, then the team would’ve won a few games less and gotten a better shot in the lottery.

    Likewise, if you give more minutes to Stuckey, BG & Bynum they either improve a bit or the team suffers for it which improves it’s lottery chances.  A player like TMac is a band-aid who prevents growth and forestalls losses, both of which are awful.

    Similarly, saying that firing John Kuester was a good move doesn’t take into account that no, it was bad because he should’ve been fired earlier.  We saw the Pacers fire their coach mid-season, and their interim coach Vogel was then able to immediately start building something.  And Dumars also should have been putting more pressure on Kuester to settle on a starting line-up and play the younger guys more, so that’s another mistake.  Thus, besides Monroe, not a single long-term contact player improved, or even really played up to their potential.  

    Now one could easily argue that having Wallace around helped Monroe develop into a better game by learning from a vet, so maybe it’s a less clear-cut case for him.  But while Tmac & Wilcox (&Kuester’s belated firing) weren’t mistakes salary-wise, I’d say development-wise they were huge screw-ups.

    • Aug 10, 20116:12 pm
      by Laser

      Reply

      there aren’t a lot of “big picture” thinkers around here, i’m sad to say. it seems like you’re one of them. i like that.

    • Aug 10, 20116:19 pm
      by neutes

      Reply

      I agree with your point, but it’s such a sticky issue. I would say that Dumars showing the ability to find value at a low cost is a trait worth exposing. Regardless of whether Mcgrady, Wallace, or Wilcox were on the team the roster had to be filled with someone. Had he filled it with complete scrubs we’d be left wondering whether he has any brain cells left at all.

      • Aug 10, 20118:36 pm
        by Patrick Hayes

        Reply

        “I would say that Dumars showing the ability to find value at a low cost is a trait worth exposing.”

        I agree 100 percent with this. I mean, Dan obviously used what I assume is a somewhat tongue-in-cheek way to highlight it, but the fact that Dumars has recently found some low cost talent does suggest that is still a skill he possesses. Clearly finding veterans like McGrady/Wallace who can contribute on the cheap isn’t a big deal when your team is lousy. But let’s say in a season or two the team has cleared one or two of its dead weight contracts or got lucky in the lottery or something. All of a sudden, having a GM who can find the equivalent of a McGrady or Wallace who can cheaply give productive minutes to a promising team becomes a much more valuable GM trait.

        • Aug 11, 20114:58 pm
          by Dan Feldman

          Reply

          I hope you’re not the only one who realized this post was somewhat tongue in cheek.

          • Aug 11, 20115:07 pm
            by Birdman84

            Was it? Oops. Well, I’ll take back my criticism above for being too easy on Dumars getting the Pistons into this mess.

    • Aug 11, 20114:56 pm
      by Dan Feldman

      Reply

      Alex, Wilcox took Villanueva’s minutes, and that could have pushed Villanueva to work harder and play smarter. That would’ve made Villanueva much more valuable in a trade. That’s how you increase a player’s value. You don’t think most NBA GMs are smart enough to see Villanueva flaws if you force feed him minutes?

  • Aug 10, 20116:23 pm
    by GeorgeH

    Reply

    Problem with this team for the past few years has been too many prima donnas … too many players playing for their scores and not those of the team.  Iverson, Hamilton, and Stuckey all have had this trait.  McGrady didn’t help.  He made things worse by acting like he was some kind of big-shot instead of the damaged goods he really was.  I also felt he made things worse in the issues between players and Kuester.  Prince just pulled back and slid thru this last season looking for a way out.  Daye began to act like he was some kind of elite, didn’t show much effort, didn’t rebound much at all, missed a lot of his shots … apparently listening too much to the team’s preseason koolaid. 

    Looked to me that in the closing weeks of the season, one of the few players that actually worked hard was Chris Wilcox. 

    • Aug 11, 20115:02 pm
      by Dan Feldman

      Reply

      I have a few issues with your comment, but this in particular:

      “Daye began to act like he was some kind of elite, didn’t show much effort, didn’t rebound much at all”

      Daye’s rebounding percentage ranked fourth on the team, behind Wallace, Wilcox and Monroe.

  • Aug 10, 20117:23 pm
    by Trout Jefferson

    Reply

    Dumars hasn’t made a bad move in two years! Hooray! The teams 57-107 the past two years, a mess financially, and last season was probably the most embarrassing season I’ve ever witnessed, but Dumars hasn’t managed to mess this team up more than it already has! That’s a win.

    OK, in all seriousness, the problem is that you’re looking at moves on an individual level here and not as a collective set of moves, which is how you actually build a team. 

    McGrady was a great value signing, right?  Well, here’s the problem: nothing came of signing him. He played somewhat well in a season that meant nothing, wasn’t traded at the deadline to net something of long-term value for the team going forward (and don’t cite the “hands-tied” argument, there’s plenty of ways to obtain value without obtaining long term money), and at the end of the day he’s nothing but a footnote in Pistons history. He didn’t help us in some magical playoff run. He was Jarvis Hayes, but actually a solid player. That’s not a net win for Dumars.

    See, the problem with Dumars right now is that even if these were all good moves, how do they fit together? What type of plan is he building towards? He’s just throwing stuff against the wall and seeing what sticks. There’s no rhyme or reason to these moves. A good GM has a plan, and then selects players that fit within that plan. Dumars is just picking “value” as he even admitted himself. That’s a horrible way to GM. It’s why you end up with 6 SGs on your team. Was McGrady good value? Yes. But how well did he fit? How much did he actually make the team better? 

    When Dumars starts making moves that actually fit together, then he should be applauded. Hell, looking at those moves just confirms that Dumars is not a man with a plan. They’re completely at random, not building towards any goal.

    • Aug 11, 20115:03 pm
      by Dan Feldman

      Reply

      What should Dumars’ plan be right now? I think acquiring good players on reasonable contracts is a great start. Until you have that, it’s very difficult to do much in the NBA.

  • Aug 10, 20118:23 pm
    by rob

    Reply

    This article makes a good point. At the same time though he wasnt allowed to make any major moves. In a way, maybe that was a good thing. Joe seemed to be on a path of self-destruction with bad move after bad move leading up to the 2yr standstill. If he was allowed to continue that plan of “re-tooling on the fly” and the “seamless transisition” he was attempting, we may actually be in much worse shape now.

    By Karen forcing Joe to stop and take a 2 yr reflective period, so to speak, she may have actually done this franchise a huge favor.

    I think Joe learned a lot during those 2 yrs, as evident by his great drafting and now hire of Frank. He seems to have remembered what it took to win the first time, and is now re-focused, re-energized, and ready to go.

  • Aug 11, 201110:36 am
    by Danielle

    Reply

    you are not a journalist – and you dont know anything about basketball….you cant make serious bad moves when you have a capped out roster filled with a bunch of losers…therefore all you do is sign people to min. contracts like mcgrady and if they suck it doesnt really matter…in fact mcgrady was a stupid signing because they didnt trade him anywhere and maybe get a 2nd round draft pick…that could have been used to draft benson, jacob pullen, bojan bogdonovic, or someone else with basketball skills and a cheap 2-year contract…this article makes no good points and i will not be reading here anymore

    • Aug 11, 201111:22 am
      by neutes

      Reply

      Cool

    • Aug 11, 201112:53 pm
      by Patrick Hayes

      Reply

      “you are not a journalist”

      Burn? I guess?

      Also, I will bet $5 million you can’t name two facts about Bojan Bogdanovic and why he would be a good fit for the Pistons without consulting Wikipedia or something.

      • Aug 11, 20113:25 pm
        by Laser

        Reply

        look, it’s safe to say that this is the worst piece of journalism this site has seen in the time i’ve been reading. if i wasn’t already a proper member of this community, this article is the kind of thing that would drive me to go away forever. so if you guys want me to go away forever, keep this kind of stuff coming.
         
        obviously feldman is a journalist. but this article is, at best, borderline journalism.

        • Aug 11, 20113:45 pm
          by Patrick Hayes

          Reply

          Oh please. First of all, I know full well that nothing will ever drive you away. Your hiatus when you were going to pack things in if the team didn’t make a trade deadline move lasted all of a week or so.

          Secondly, although I didn’t write this piece, as someone who does write and attempts to do it in compelling/creative/original ways, I picked up on what Dan was doing. From my perspective, I think, yes, he was writing this to incite the kind of discussion it has down here. I think he purposely wrote the headline to antagonize/rile up all of the “Feldman is so pro-Dumars” crowd down here. And obviously, it worked pretty well in that respect.

          But all that being said, there’s substance to what he wrote. Yes, it is a skill to continuously find inexpensive talent that out-performs what you pay for it. Dumars did it when he signed Billups/Ben Wallace/McDyess. He did it when he drafted Prince/Maxiell/Okur/Jerebko/Stuckey. Those non-lottery picks all out-performed the expected production based on where they were drafted. And he did it again when he signed Wallace again/McGrady/Wilcox.

          So, over the top presentation of a thing that Dumars has done subtly and consistently well in his GM career? Maybe. But Dan’s not wrong here, even if the way he made his case annoys you. It’s a skill to find cheap talent. It’s a skill that not every GM possesses. I mean, look at the Lakers, for example. Trying to fill out their bench with cheap talent netted them Matt Barnes, Shannon Brown, Steve Blake and Theo Ratliff. Those guys all sucked. Look at the Heat. How much production did they get out of House, James Jones, Ilgauskas, Dampier, etc.?

          The ability to get production on the cheap obviously doesn’t mean much if your overall team sucks, but the main point I took from Dan’s post, that Dumars still does this pretty effectively, is a relevant one. It doesn’t change the fact that Dumars created the mess the team is in financially, and if you actually read the intro, Dan says that in plain English.

          • Aug 11, 20116:36 pm
            by khandor

            @ Patrick,
            re: “The ability to get production on the cheap obviously doesn’t mean much if your overall team sucks, but the main point I took from Dan’s post, that Dumars still does this pretty effectively, is a relevant one. It doesn’t change the fact that Dumars created the mess the team is in financially, and if you actually read the intro, Dan says that in plain English.”
            1. I agree with the basic tenets of your comment.
            2. However, please explain your notion of the “financial mess” the Pistons will be in, going forward under the ownership of Tom Gores.

          • Aug 11, 20116:53 pm
            by brgulker

            @ khandor

            Are you serious?

            Even the most obtuse Pistons fan understands how bad the financial situation is. The owner has nothing to do with it.

            We’ve got terrible contracts. At the time when those contracts will expire, we’ll have to re-up all our young talent. That means that we don’t have any financial flexibility to sign any important FA’s.

            Further, the terrible contracts we have are for players who aren’t any good and aren’t likely to fetch much in the trade market. the best we can hope for is salary dumps. 

            We’re a capped out lottery team with few trade assets. There aren’t many teams in the NBA with a worse salary profile than the Pistons.

            I’m sure you’ll find a way to argue with this. You always argue with facts. It is your MO.

          • Aug 11, 20116:58 pm
            by Patrick Hayes

            The basic tenets? The Pistons owe a lot of money to players — Hamilton, Maxiell, Villanueva, Gordon — who have severely underperformed. They have cheaper players who have been more productive than those guys over the last two years — Jerebko and Stuckey — in line for raises over their current pay rate. Depending on what the new collective bargaining agreement is, the salary cap could go down. The Pistons could be in a position where they are stuck having to overpay unproductive players while not having the cap space to add new, more productive players.

          • Aug 12, 20115:28 am
            by khandor

            @ Ben,
            Obtuse?
            Would you say that the Pistons’ current situation is somehow more dire than that of the New York Knicks, from a few [relatively short?] years ago?
            Because … the last I checked, even a once down-trodden, rather sad-sack operation like the James Dolan induced obliterated-version of the Knickerbockers actually qualified as the No. 5 team in the EC playoffs last season, after placing control of their team’s basketball-related decision-making in the hands of a fairly good veteran GM with prior experience taking his team to multiple Conference Finals and, IIRC, an appearance in the NBA Finals.
            NBA Facts, not fiction:
            1. Anybody can be traded.
            2. There are always worse GMs in the league than yours.
            3. Good-to-very-good GMs who have actually constructed Championship-winning team in the past actually have a fairly high degree of “basketball acumen.”
            4. Great ownership can, on occasion, beget top flight GMship.
            5. Great GMship can, on occasion, beget top flight Coaching.
            6. Authentic elite level coaching can, on occasion, beget a collection of good-fit players, with a solid mix of superstars, stars, and highly effective role players.
            7. The Salary Cap and the Luxury Tax Threshold are artificial constructs that championship-winning teams, for the most, completely disregard, as impediments to winning it all.
            8. An over-reliance on the excessively magnified importance/meaningfulness on statistics is strictly a concern for losers.
            9. Winners only use “the numbers” to back up what they happen to have learned about the game they’re playing from 10,000+ hours of devoted, precise practice.
            10. According to that noted “NBA loser”, Bill Russell, [paraphrasing] “The objective of basketball is not to score the ball, but to win the game.”
            Disregard what THIS man tells you about how the game is actually played at your own peril.

          • Aug 12, 201112:23 pm
            by brgulker

            I have no idea what that Bill Russell citation is supposed to mean given our discussion of Detroit’s financial profile. Bill Russell is an all-time great, maybe the greatest ever, and I agree with his quote with everything in me (and it’s part of the reasons why I’m so interested in Wins Produced and its derivatives, because it values efficiency, rebounding, and possession creation, things Russell was outstanding at).

            1. So what? That has no bearing on our current salary profile. The salary profile is really bad. That’s more fact you’re denying.
            2. So what?
            3. So what?
            4. So what? We have no idea if Gores is a good owner or not.
            5. I’m not even sure if that’s an English sentence. Sounds more like KJV bible speak.  
            6. No kidding? You’re talking to a Pistons fan who watched Larry Brown coach the Pistons to back-to-back Finals. But what the heck does that have to do with finances? 
            7.  Study Pistons history and find out how many times we’ve been over the luxury tax in the past decade. Then check back with me. This is so irrelevant, I hardly know how to respond.
            8. What in the world does this have to do with our salary profile?
            9. So… you should only use objective data to reinforce subjective opinion. Do you work for the Creation Institute? And again, what does this have to do with salary profile?
            10. See above, plus, I love how you use Bill Russell like a trump card. It’s like you just hit a royal flush, except we’re playing Gin Rummy. Bam, beeyatch!!! Bill Russell pwns you, n00b!

          • Aug 12, 20114:26 pm
            by khandor

            @ Ben,
            Russell does not talk about “possession” creation. Neither does he talk about “efficiency”, nor the accuracy of a one-size fits all metric like “Wins Produced”. What Russell does speak about, however, are eternal concepts like:
            The true value of imagination.
            The commitment to Team Performance and Team Success, aka “Winning.”
            The entire concept of TEAM, in the first place; in conjunction with the concept of COMPETITION.
            Given the reality of operations the NBA, there is no such thing as a legitimately “bad” salary profile. Heck, even the Knicks could turn around their titanic-like ship, with a very good GM on-board.
            1. A fact accepted by both of us.
            2. A fact accepted by both of us.
            3. A fact accepted by both of us.
            4. For the Pistons’ sake, let’s hope Gores is a good owner like Mr. Davidson was.
            5. Yes, it is.
            6. A fact accepted by both of us.
            7. If the Pistons hope to win the NBA title, again, in the future, recent league history would seem to suggest that they will need to change their previous M.O.
            8. Joe Dumars, in the NBA environment, is not properly classified as “A loser.”
            9. Please show me where it says categorically that in the world of elite level performance in team sport, supposedly “objective” data is perceived to be of considerable more value than supposedly “subjective”data which has been collated based upon “documented anecdotal research” about a similar subject/topic/environmental function/etc?
            10. If the game is played with a deck of cards, whether it be Poker or Gin Rummy, and Bill Russell happens to be on the same team as me, then, based on his unparalleled success as a player of card games [i.e. used as an analogy for basketball, in general] then my expectation is that “our team” would eventually be able to beat yours in a tightly contested 7-game series. :-)

          • Aug 15, 20112:24 pm
            by brgulker

            “A rose by any other name…”

            Rebounding = possession creation. They are synonymous, for all intents and purposes. If he values rebounding, he values possession creation.

          • Aug 15, 20114:37 pm
            by khandor

            @ Ben,
            If you would have said something along the following lines:
            - Rebounds, Blocked Shots, Steals and Opponent Turnovers are important because they allow your team to obtain possession of the ball without first having to give up a fg or a ft
            - Assists create an easier/better scoring opportunity for your teammate
            - Along with “The Winning of the League Championship” … these are some of the aspects of the game which were highly valued by Bill Russell
            then I would have agreed with what you said about The Greatest Celtic.

        • Aug 12, 201112:46 am
          by Laser

          Reply

          @hayes: i’m an addict, but i could be driven away. i promise. i’ve gone on and off the radar lately, but for some reason it seems like i’m always around.
           
          as to your broader point, it appears feldman was intent on setting a fire and getting some hits, and it worked. well done. similarly, i could drive my car into a school bus and it would make the news. but this article is deeply, deeply flawed. it’s a little like writing an article focusing on the time hitler spent volunteering at jewish summer camp between the fall of the third reich and when he killed himself.

          • Aug 12, 201112:17 pm
            by Metaphor

            Pistonpowered is like a big family! Patrick and Dan are like the good intentioned parents, ben and laser are like the smart, independent, at times smartass brothers, and khandor is the senile, know-it-all grandfather!

            And Mike Payne is the drunk uncle.

          • Aug 12, 201112:30 pm
            by brgulker

            lololol! Love this.

          • Aug 12, 201112:31 pm
            by Patrick Hayes

            Yeah, seconded. That’s easily the best comment in PP history.

          • Aug 12, 20112:58 pm
            by Laser

            metaphor is the mysterious stranger who rides through town and instantly wins all of our hearts!

          • Aug 12, 20113:00 pm
            by Laser

            and to add to his mystique, he mostly uses similes!

          • Aug 12, 20114:28 pm
            by khandor

            @ metaphor and Laser,
            Amen to that. :-)

          • Aug 12, 20114:35 pm
            by khandor

            @ Ben and Patrick,
            Sorry … Did not mean to leave either of you two out of the, “Amen to that,” above.
            As Jack Nicholson’s character [i.e. McMurphy], in One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest, might have had to say, “Perceived senility, depending on the context, actually has its advantages.”

  • Aug 11, 201112:30 pm
    by Larry

    Reply

    Very good column. Insightful. But, ugh, can we dispense with the red background. Very hard on the eyes!

      • Aug 11, 20113:27 pm
        by Laser

        Reply

        i’m loving what a firestorm of controversy this piece has brought and hoe feldman just chimes in to provide a link. classic feldman. defend your piece, man. this one needs all the help it can get.

        • Aug 11, 20113:31 pm
          by Patrick Hayes

          Reply

          Dude, he was providing a link to fix a technical problem the commenter was having. What is wrong with that?

          • Aug 12, 201112:39 am
            by Laser

            naw, it’s cool hayes. i just thought the man should join the discussion he must have wanted desperately to start. feldman stepped up and got into the mix.

  • Aug 11, 20113:04 pm
    by bill brasky

    Reply

    Well, the Monroe notion is kinda false because Ed Davis showed he could rebound and is still kind of raw. The Frank signing is going to be a bad idea because he has the same credentials as John Kuester, minus the fact that Kue wasn’t handed a decent Nets team as was Frank. Also, Frank is probably the reason why Boston couldn’t stop Lebron and Wade in the playoffs and that if things get down for the Pistons under his watch, the players will have the same arsenal of insults to toss his way based off the fact that he didn’t even play high school basketball. what’s not mentioned in this article is the fact that Karen Davidson refused to allow the team to make moves unless it cut salary during the sale. The two moves that truly hurt this team were the Ben Gordon and Charlie V signings.

    • Aug 11, 20113:18 pm
      by Patrick Hayes

      Reply

      “Also, Frank is probably the reason why Boston couldn’t stop Lebron and Wade in the playoffs”

      If the Celtics were using Frank to guard Lebron and Wade, then I would agree with you that that would be why they lost. But the real reason Boston couldn’t guard Lebron and Wade in the playoffs is because they are the best players at their respective positions in the league.

      • Aug 11, 20113:35 pm
        by Jason

        Reply

        And the fact that Boston was completely injured.  I know people say that everyone is injured by playoffs but I am saying Boston was flat out injured.  Allen, Pierce and Rondo.  Can’t remember if Garnett was injured though.

  • Aug 11, 20118:48 pm
    by Mangioni

    Reply

    Knight is probably going to be alright but not great. Frank, probably the same way.

  • Aug 12, 20116:13 pm
    by Ballin

    Reply

    as your article shown he hasnt made any bad moves because he hasnt MADE any moves. All of those things FELL INTO HIS LAP. He did nothing even prior to those years. He hasnt made a decent move since probably sheed. Everything else he had happen either fell to him in the draft or through free agency. He is the reason for the complacency on the team. letting tayshaun get away with lazy play. and same with rip. He lost john hammond and clearly the new VP scott perry isnt the voice joe dumars needs cause every player he has gone after he has failed to get or just got because no one else wanted.

    you guys are being paid by tom gores to write these articles about joe dumars and lawrence frank arent you?

  • Aug 14, 20118:37 pm
    by Jodi Jezz

    Reply

    Gordon will retire a piston!!

  • Aug 15, 20112:38 pm
    by brgulker

    Reply

    @ khandor

    Of course BG could play PG next to Pippen and Jordan, but almost no team in the entire NBA uses their PGs in that way, and clearly, the Pistons won’t be next year.

    To point out the single most unlikely scenario in which a player’s skillset could be utilized and then suggest that this is how the Pistons should move forward into next season is ridiculous.

    w/r/t being a troll, you act the part. You constantly debate in bad faith, you constantly dodge questions, you constantly makes appeals to authority that you refuse to back up, and you constantly talk down to everyone who doesn’t agree with you. 

    And did I mention you never answer questions?

    Here’s one — how many Pistons games have you watched over the past 2 seasons since BG was signed?

  • Aug 15, 20114:54 pm
    by brgulker

    Reply

    @ khandor

    I didn’t say Boston lost this year because of the trade. You keep knocking down straw men of your own creating.

    I said that Boston has a problem at C, i.e., they do not have one! And that stated problem will prohibit them from being a serious contender.

    Believe it or not, I watched the games. I saw the injury to Rondo, etc., etc. Perk wouldn’t have been enough to overcome those problems, and I never stated otherwise. 

    Ainge made a bad trade, and his reputation was hurt. That’s what i originally said. I went on to say that they have a very big problem moving forward because they don’t have a C. This has nothing to do with stats at all.

    The rest is stuff you’re reading into what I’m saying, and it just isn’t there.

    • Aug 15, 20115:32 pm
      by khandor

      Reply

      @ Ben,
      You said that [paraphrasing] Boston is no longer an elite team in the NBA … because they have a problem at the C position without KP in their line-up.
      If the Celtics would have beaten the Heat, would you and others in the on-line hoops community still be talking about Boston no longer being an elite team in the NBA?
      IMO, you – and others – would not be talking about this, if Boston would have beaten Miami in the playoffs this past year … which, in all likelihood, they would NOT have done, even if KP was still their starting C.

      • Aug 16, 20119:51 am
        by brgulker

        Reply

        So let me get this straight. If Danny Ainge had not traded KP, we wouldn’t be debating Ainge’s merit as a GM. Well, thanks Captain Obvious! :)

        Boston didn’t have a chance against Miami, so I don’t see where that gets us. Further, even if they’d beaten Miami, they wouldn’t have had a chance to win a championship. Chandler would have eaten them alive.

        • Aug 16, 20111:27 pm
          by khandor

          Reply

          @ Ben,
          #1. Up above, in one of your earlier comments, did you, or did you not, say something equivalent to:
          - Boston is no longer an elite team in the NBA
          - The reason Boston is no longer an elite team in the NBA is because they no longer have Kendrick Perkins as their Center
          - The reason Boston no longer has Perkins is because Danny Ainge traded Perkins to OKC
          - Danny Ainge’s credibility is in the crapper
          Earlier you asked me if I have trouble acknowledging a simple fact. What I showed you in return is that what you [or someone else] accept[s] readily as a form of factual information may well not really be a fact at all.
          Now, it’s my turn to put the question to you.
          Did you, or did you not, state those observations about Danny Ainge, Kendrick Perkins, and the Boston Celtics earlier in this thread? [fact or fiction?]
          #2. IMO, your impression that Boston did not have a chance against Miami is, in part, predicated upon 3 things:
          i. Your perception that Boston’s series loss to Miami was due to not having Perkins as their Center, which you happened to hold BEFORE the series even started;
          ii. The injuries to Rondo [before and during the series], S-O’Neal [before the series] and M-Daniels [before the series]
          iii. The fact that Boston actually lost their series to Miami.
          which can sometimes lead to the development of faulty conclusions about the game of basketball.
          IMO, you … and other NBA observers … would [should?] not even be talking about the precarious state of the Celtics going forward, if Boston would simply have beaten Miami in the playoffs this season.
          In this regard, here’s what I happen to believe:
          - Boston would most likely have beaten Miami in the playoffs this past season, if Rondo, and S-O’Neal, and Daniels had been 100% healthy AND Perkins had not been traded to OKC; or,
          - Boston would most likely have beaten Miami in the playoffs this past season, if Rondo, and S-Oneal, had been 100% healthy AND Krstic and Green were added to their roster, instead of K-Perkins;
          - Boston would most likely have been beaten by Miami in the playoffs this past season, if Rondo, and S-O’Neal, and M-Daniels were NOT 100% healthy AND Krstic and Green were added to their roster, instead of K-Perkins.
          - When it seemed to Danny Ainge that S-O’Neal and M-Daniels were not going to be healthy for the playoffs, and that Rondo may be in a similar condition, he looked at his roster and decided to give himself the best possible chance to win the NBA Championship this past season by “trading in” Perkins [who suffered a serious knee injury in the 2010 NBA Finals] for a package of players that REALLY included [1] Jeff Green/SF-PF, [2] Nenad Krstic/C, and [3] Troy Murphy/PF-C … in an effort to improve the offensive production of his team, in arrears of Misters Pierce and Garnett, who are their team’s mainstays at the SF and PF-C positions, but who are both getting long in the tooth and are in need of increased “maintenance”, as each season goes by.
          In the Celtics 4 losses to Miami in the playoffs, Boston scored 90, 91, 86 [end of regulation] and 87 points. That’s an average score of 88.5 points.
          In the Heat’s 4 wins and their lone loss to Boston in the playoffs, Boston relinquished just 99, 102, 81 [w], 86 [end of regulation] and 97 points. That’s an average score of 93 points.
          The major problem going forward for the Celtics AND the main problem which they had in their playoff series loss to Miami last season was NOT their significantly weakened defense without Kendrick Perkins, as their Center, but their substantially weakened offense from last season … compared with prior years … BOTH with AND without Kendrick Perkins in their line-up.

  • Aug 15, 20115:04 pm
    by brgulker

    Reply

    @ khandor

    Possession creation is essentially shorthand for below. Instead of typing all that, though, I can just say, “possession creation,” and people will know what I mean.

    - Rebounds, Blocked Shots, Steals and Opponent Turnovers are important because they allow your team to obtain possession of the ball without first having to give up a fg or a ft

    • Aug 15, 20115:26 pm
      by khandor

      Reply

      @ Ben,
      This is an important subject, so it’s important to proceed slowly … you never know who might be looking at this thread, either, now, or, in the future.
      After each made fg by an opponent … a possession is created for your defensive team.
      After each blocked shot by your team – for example – a possession is not necessary created for your defensive team [since your team still does not have control of the ball].
      Do you see part of the problem involved with using a “generic” term like “possession creation”?

      • Aug 16, 20119:49 am
        by brgulker

        Reply

        No one that I know who uses the term counts made baskets by the other team in possession creation.

        No one that I know who uses the term counts blocks as part of possession creation.

        Possession creation is used to describe possessions that are generated outside of the given possessions that are simply a function of basketball. Steals, rebounds, sometimes blocks assuming the defense recovers the ball. In other words, when the ball isn’t possessed by either team.

        When a shot goes up and misses, no one has possession. When a ball is deflected, even if momentarily, no one has possession. When a shot is blocked, even if momentarily, no one has possession.

        Those players who excel at getting the ball in those moments are very valuable if you’re interested in winning basketball games. I have a very hard time believing Bill Russel (or any coach at any level of basketball) would disagree with this statement. We can debate the relative merits of such players all day, but I think everyone agrees those players are helpful, not neutral or harmful.

        The term “possession creation” is only generic if one doesn’t understand its very specific definition, in other words. 

        • Aug 16, 20111:39 pm
          by khandor

          Reply

          @ Ben,
          According to you:
          1. What is the definition that you are using for what properly constitutes “a possession” in a game of basketball?
          2. What definition does WP use to determine the total number of possessions in a basketball game?
          [e.g. Are total possessions for a team in a game restricted to only those ones which are obtained without the opponent first scoring a fg or a ft?]
          3. Is the concept of somehow being able to create “extra” possessions for a team even a possibility when using a metric like WP/etc.?

          • Aug 16, 20113:55 pm
            by brgulker

            I’m not answering #1 or #2. Those answers are published and readily available. And yes, I’ve seen your blog posts bemoaning the opinion of everyone else on the matter.

            W/r/t #3, I have no idea what you’re even trying to ask.

          • Aug 17, 201112:05 pm
            by khandor

            @ Ben,
            I asked for the definition that you happen to be using for what constitutes a possession so that I can be clear about it. All too frequently, what is published elsewhere on-line for a working definition of “a possession” is FACTUALLY incorrect, according to how the game of basketball is actually played. [e.g. what may be acceptable to others as a legitimate form of "short-hand" is not necessarily acceptable to me, when it fails to make sense, according to the rules of the game, just for the sake of "ease" when dealing with an array of statistical computations]
            As far I know the correct answer to Q2 is, “NO, they are not determined in that specific manner.”
            When “possession totals” are not determined accurately … e.g. FGs + TOs + Number of Final FTAs [or a legitimate statistical estimate of this actual number] … and there is no possibility that one team in a game may well generate greater than a +1 difference in total number of possessions in a specific game, relative to their opponent, then, IMO, it is simply not sound to use the term “possession creation”while attempting to analyze the game of basketball.
            [NOTE: In essence, if the hoops stats gurus of the world are going to mutate what actually constitutes a proper "possession" for the sake of statistical ease when performing complex computations then, unfortunately, at least, for them, they do NOT also get the luxury of being able to refer to the concept of "possession creation", since by their OWN definition, NO SUCH POSSIBILITY ACTUALLY EXISTS. Hopefully, this concept is not too difficult for anyone else who is reading this thread/comment for the first time to understand, since it is a hard concept to explain properly and my syntax is nowhere close to being good enough to explain concisely in a few words.]
            I have now read your comment that says, “Clean slate,” and am willing to leave this topic behind, in an effort to move forward in a productive way, if you are agreeable. :-) Hopefully you are.

  • Aug 15, 20115:17 pm
    by khandor

    Reply

    @ Ben,
    Specificity is important.
    What you think are:
    - constantly debating in bad faith
    - constantly dodging questions,
    - constantly making appeals to authority that you refuse to back up,
    - constantly talking down to everyone who doesn’t agree with you
    are not what you think they are.
    * The first thing that actually needs to happen for two people to have a meaningful discussion about something is a mutually shared understanding of exactly what it is they specifically will be discussing.
    * I have little interest in “debating,” since that is what a “debate club” is for. One the things I enjoy doing, however, talking about the Pistons.
    * Please give me an example of “an appeal to authority” that I have made.
    * Please give me an example of me “talking down to someone who disagrees with my opinion.”
    re: And did I mention you never answer questions?
    Like others … I answer some/most of the questions asked of me, but not all. Personally, I see little wrong with this method of operation, as answering every question asked is simply too onerous.
    re: how many Pistons games have I watched over the last 2 seasons
    The flippant answer is … probably not as many as you.
    The truthful answer is … not nearly as many as I would have liked :-) … and, unfortunately, I cannot give you a “hard” number, given the number of games I watch on-line and the amount of basketball I see, in general … since a good part of what I happen to do involves staying abreast of as many teams as possible across a number of different sports.
    If you need to have a rough estimate … then, let’s go with @ 40 games.
    PS. The Triangle Offense was just one example which I provided. IMO, Ben Gordon could also play PG in a way that would be reminiscent of a poor man’s version of someone like Gail Goodrich [LA Lakers] or Gus Williams [Seattle Supersonics].

    • Aug 16, 20119:45 am
      by brgulker

      Reply

      - constantly debating in bad faith

      Claiming to have NBA experience and then totally and completely dodging when asked about it, all while constantly appealing to that NBA experience as the reason why people should be persuaded by what you say. 

      - constantly dodging questions,

      See above.

      - constantly making appeals to authority that you refuse to back up,

      See above.

      - constantly talking down to everyone who doesn’t agree with youare not what you think they are.

      Coming to my blog to tell me the work that Mosi and I do, as well as the other WoW bloggers, is worthless isn’t talking down? I don’t know what is, then.

      The semantics game is tiring. We don’t have to have a formal debate like in “debate  club” in order to have rational disagreements. Rational disagreements are the kind I’m interested in (as opposed to purely subjective and/or emotive disagreements where we just say that our favorite players are the best because we say so), and rationality entails certain basic assumptions.

      Appeals to authority, e.g., are among the weakest supports for an argument. Your persistent appeal to authority is your experience with high level athletes, basketball acumen, etc. 

      Basically, whenever you make a claim about what rotation a coach should use, what type of system would elicit the best performance out of players, etc., you’re basically saying, “Trust me. I’m a Doctor.” 

      Of course, when i go see a Dr., I can easily check that doctor’s credentials so that i know i’m actually seeing a Dr. and that said Dr. is worthy of my trust.

      When you’re pressed for answers as to why we should believe you, the best answer you give is something like, “Well, if you just read what I post online, it should become obvious to you over time that I am who I say I am.”

      You have realized that very few people actually take you up on that, right?

      As best as I understand the phrase, that’s the very definition of arguing in bad faith. It doesn’t mean you’re a bad person or anything, I know you’re not from other interactions. But it does make it incredibly difficult to have a conversation about basketball with you.

      • Aug 16, 20112:43 pm
        by khandor

        Reply

        @ Ben,
        re: NBA experience
        IIRC, I have never once said something like, “I have NBA experience.”
        So, whether or not I actually have had NBA experience is irrelevant in this case.
        ————————–
        re: dodging questions, see above
        I see no question above that you asked which I did not answer.
        [if you see this, however, then, please point it/them out]
        ————————–
        re: appeals to authority
        I see no such appeals above in this thread.
        [if you can see this, however, then, please point it/them out]
        ————————–
        re: saying that what you and Mosi do is a waste of time
        The direct quote is:
        “Mosi’s article is an example of why “basketball analysis, strictly via WP” is mostly a waste of time.”
        This is not the same thing as saying that “what you and Mosi do is a waste of time.”
        What this quote says is that, “When Mosi writes an article that attempts to explain what actually happens in a basketball game, or a series of games, or a season, etc., as far as a single player or a team, etc., is concerned, ONLY via WP, then, it’s MOSTLY a waste of time [IMO ... which was left out but should really be assumed to be the case since it is actually me saying/writing these words and not anyone else who I may otherwise have referenced in my comment if it was not me but this other person or group of persons, etc.]
        I think you know me well enough by this point to know that if I had wanted to say what you and Mosi do is a waste of time then this is precisely what I would have actually written [typos excluded ... because I am not a very good typist at all, :-)].
        ————————–
        re: experience with NBA players and coaches and administrators/etc., legitimate NBA rotations, and appointments with a doctor
        If you read what I have actually written on-line then you should be able to see that I have not made any appeal to authority, like what you have suggested in this thread.
        e.g. When I say something like, “An authentic elite level coach would use ‘this’ type of rotation,” what I then do is give you the name of an authentic elite level coach who has actually used this specific type of rotation in the NBA, i.e. Phil Jackson would use Ben Gordon in the following way, like he used BJ Armstrong, etc.; Lenny Wilkens would use Ben Gordon in the following way, like he used Gus Williams; Chuck Daly would use Ben Gordon in the following way, like he used Vinnie Johnson; etc. Nowhere did I say something like, “This is how I would choose to use Player X, and since I’m an elite level coach myself … whether I actually am or not is not really relevant since I am not making any such claim in what I’m actually writing … AND you should REALLY believe me, that it would in fact work, since I’ve already done it in REAL life when I happened to be with Team Y and it succeeded just fine even with non-elite level players, relative to their competition.”
        re: why should believe what anybody tells you
        The best reason I’m aware of that anybody should believe what anybody else has to tell them is because you actually think what this person has to say makes some sense to you, in and of itself, without them making any reference to an external source at all … unlike, say, in a court of law, or when presenting a formal dissertation, or when presenting an academic research paper for publication, etc.
        Now, if this is not possible, then, the 2nd best reason might be because someone else is able to cite other examples of real life experts [aka, doctors in your analogy] who consistently talk about specific subjects in the same way as what this person is now telling you is the best way these other experts would choose to handle a particular situation. By all means, what you should first do is verify that this is actually what these other cited experts actually have to say about this same subject. If it is then this might be a good course of action for you to follow. If it isn’t then,perhaps, simply disregard what this person tries to you.
        In addition, if this person is also someone who is willing to have their advice-to-you tested, by you [and others], over an extended period of time, for its actual correctness, then, this is someone whose opinion you might want to use/consult in future when formulating your own ideas on a particular subject … not as Gospel, so-to-speak, but as valuable input; that’s all.
        ————————–
        re: how many people actually take me up on an offer I make to them
        What I do I do because I enjoy doing it, not because X number of people will value it, or not.
        ————————–
        re: having a real conversation with me about the game of basketball
        I could always be wrong about this, but … it seems to me as though you and I have had at least a few of these which are actually quite interesting and perhaps informative, as well.
        Cheers, and continued best wishes [even if we do not happen to agree with one another about this specific subject].
        PS. You are actually one of the most respectful people I have encountered on-line, so far, and I sincerely respect you for being like that. I only wish that more people in this world would be as tolerant of those who happen to be different than themselves.
         

        • Aug 16, 20113:57 pm
          by brgulker

          Reply

          You have claimed to have had experience either coaching or working with “elite level athletes.” True or false? 

          You have claimed to have Hubie Brown’s phone number and have claimed to have talked to him in person with frequency. True or false?

          The rest of your comment feels like a lot of hair splitting to me. I appreciate being precise, as a student of Philosophy, but I’m not sure there’s a fruitful outcome here.

          Thanks for the complement. I’m a stubborn hard head, to be sure, but I try to respect people.

          • Aug 17, 201112:18 pm
            by khandor

            @ Ben,
            Yes, I have first-hand experience working with elite level athletes.
            Yes, I happen to have Hubie Brown’s home telephone number, and have communicated with him directly, on occasion, in the past … in addition to other elite level coaches I happen to know personally, across a range of different sports.
            I do not tout this fact, however, in an effort to “make an appeal to authority”. I simply acknowledge this fact, if/when others ask me the following question, “What elite level coaches do you happen to know?”
            Part of what I happen to do involves actually teaching at least one student of Philosophy, so I am quite familiar with the need such an individual has for the concept of precision.
            Much R.E.S.P.E.C.T. to you, my friend, even … or, perhaps, especially … if we just so happen to disagree about a certain topic. In my judgment, we have much more in-common with one another than we have substantial differences of opinion and/or experience.

  • Aug 15, 20115:55 pm
    by Jodi Jezz

    Reply

    Ben Gordon is the best! I’m glad you all are talking about him, he is going to avg. 18-21pts per game next season…

  • Aug 16, 20114:03 pm
    by brgulker

    Reply

    @ khandor

    Clean slate.

    David Lee is a good player. Overall, he’s a net positive. He’s not a great defender, and if you’re counting on him as a defensive stopper, you’re going to be disappoitned. But he’s a good rebounder, he can knock down mid-range jumpshots consistently, and he does lots of the little things on offense that matter.

    He’s probably a little bit overpaid in the last two years of his contract, assuming he returns to form next year and this year as an outlier due to injury and transition.  But in the context of contracts that pay more than their worth — specifically in the context of a Pistons blog — I’d rather have him and his contract than any of our questionable-to-bad contracts. I’d gladly give him Rip’s contract or Ben Gordon’s contract every day of the week. 

    The fact that his team hasn’t won a championship yet doesn’t mean he’s not a player I’d want on my team if we were trying to build a championship team. He’s not a centerpiece, but he’s definitely a useful piece.

    • Aug 17, 201112:45 pm
      by khandor

      Reply

      @ Ben,
      Clean slate.
      For the most part, I agree that David Lee is a [fairly?] good basketball player. He is a net positive, a poor defender, a good rebounder, can make mid-range jump-shots, and does a bunch of little things that matter on offense [... and can help his team to win games, especially, of the regular season variety].
      For the most part, I agree with everything which you said in your second paragraph.
      If my team was just trying to be competitive in the NBA, then, I agree … that, yes, indeed, David Lee is a mostly productive player who can help a team achieve that specific goal.
      My point, regarding a Big like David Lee, however, is concerned with something slightly different than that.
      My point, specifically, is that adding a Big like David Lee … despite his net positivity … does not really and substantially move a team closer to ever being able to actually win a League Championship.
      By this, I mean that, when I look at the rosters of the list of former championship teams in the NBA, I do not happen to see a number of different Big Men with individual game’s that resemble David Lee [i.e. as you've described him above].
      I am making no judgment about this perceived absence, on my part, and just stating what I happen to see when I examine the Big Men on these other rosters.
      e.g. Someone like Horace Grant was a MUCH better defensive player than David Lee, as was Otis Thorpe, and John Salley, and Malik Rose, and Fabricio Oberto, etc.; while the other type of Big Man you will find is most accurately described as a MUCH superior offensive player compared to David Lee, like Kevin McHale, Cedric Maxwell, Kevin Garnett, Pau Gasol, Elvin Hayes, James Edwards, James Worthy, etc.
      Hopefully this makes it easier for you to understand my point.
      i.e. If when the League Championship is eventually your team’s goal then adding a David Lee-type player to your roster, especially, as your starting PF-C, is not really going to help you accomplish this feat … if you look at the roster’s of past championship teams, and the list of major accomplishments for teams with David Lee-type players [... that are really not built very well for winning in the playoffs].

      • Aug 17, 20112:21 pm
        by brgulker

        Reply

        Again, we’re not talking about David Lee in a vacuum here. We’re talking about him specifically in the free agent context of 2009, when Dumars spent on BG and CV.

        I do not think that David Lee would be the centerpiece of a championship frontcourt (unless you’re lucky enough to have a MJ or LBJ carrying your offense, of course). But I do think he has a great deal of value, and I think he was the best FA available during the summer of 09. I was baffled that Dumars never, ever talked about him or made a play for him.

        In historical context and in hindsight, there’s no way NY would have matched a BG-type deal had we offered it to Lee. Lee may still have declined. There was risk there. But that risk was worth it, especially when you consider that the result of 09′s summer was what it was.

        BG and CV don’t win championships. David Lee is better, but I wouldn’t say elite. If I had to choose, and frankly, Dumars did have to choose in that moment (either that, or sit on his cap space), I would have chosen Lee, because at least Lee helps you remain competitive, and at least he’s a tradeable asset if things don’t work out. 

        I agree he’s no Kevin McHale or Horace Grant.

        • Aug 17, 20112:54 pm
          by khandor

          Reply

          I agree that Dumars should not have signed Villanueva.
          Although I think adding a player like Ben Gordon can be an important ingredient in a team’s effort to get better, overall, so that it can eventually challenge for a league championship down-the-road, I can certainly see how someone else might choose to disagree with this assessment of BG’s highly limited skill-set and the specific role that “BG-type” players can sometimes fulfill for a high calibre team in the NBA … which is actually well-coached.
          I also agree that having David Lee – warts and all – on the Pistons for the last 2 seasons could well have allowed their team to compete for a lower-tier playoff position … but, IMO, this is really not saying very much, since it is/was also my contention/belief that Detroit’s roster as it was SHOULD still have been able to achieve a similar net result even if it was nowhere near as strong as it needed to be in order to compete effectively for a Top 4 spot in the EC.
          Personally, if I had actually been the Pistons GM, at the time, instead of Joe D., I would not have:
          i. Traded Chauncey Billups for AI [in agreement with you];
          ii. Signed Ben Gordon [in agreement with you];
          iii. Signed Charlie Villanueva [in agreement with you]; or,
          iv. Signed David Lee [disagree with you].
          As I’ve said …we actually agree about more things involving the Pistons than we disagree. :-)
          PS. And, believe it or not, the exact same thing can be said for me and someone like Dave Berri, even though he may not actually be able to realize it … due to the unfortunate presence of his own “blinders” [aka, agenda].

  • Aug 16, 20119:12 pm
    by Matt

    Reply

    Sorry, I just don’t think I can really give Dumars credit for not making as catastrophic a move as the Billups/Iverson trade and Gordon/Charlie V signings.

    Don’t you also have to look at moves that went unmade such as failed free agency pursuits and trades that fell through? I imagined that would be pretty tough to look back at and I’m not saying there were necessarily any “bad moves” among them, but I feel like if you’re going to credit Dumars with having “0 bad moves” you’ve gotta look at those.

  • Apr 10, 201312:03 am
    by Catherin Hammed

    Reply

    Watch Sports Live On Your PC And Never Miss Another Game Again. No Contacts,No Hassles Just A One Off Payment For 24/7 Access To Your Favorite Sports. http://bit.ly/watch-sports-live

  • Leave a Reply

    Your Ad Here