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May 14, 2012

Agent David Falk: Huge gap between Anthony Davis and the rest of the draft

               Agent David Falk has represented some of the best NBA players ever, including center Patrick Ewing, scoring guard Allen Iverson and now-Charlotte Bobcats owner Michael Jordan.

               So he knows the draft, and Falk says the 2012 draft will fall off precipitously after a single pick.

               “This is a one-player draft,’’ Falk told the Observer Monday, referring to Kentucky freshman big man Anthony Davis. “Picks two through eight, there’s not a lot of separation. There’s just not a lot of difference between (Michael Kidd-)Gilchrist, (Andre) Drummond or (Harrison) Barnes.

               “A lot of teams will be looking to trade down because the difference from two through eight is miniscule.’’

               After finishing with the worst winning percentage in NBA history, the 7-59 Bobcats will have the most chances in the May 30 draft lottery. But that still gives them only a 25 percent chance at the top pick. The draft is June 28 in Newark, N.J.

               Falk, who no longer represents Jordan, said the Bobcats did the right thing by deconstructing the team that went to the playoffs in 2010 with Gerald Wallace, Boris Diaw and Stephen Jackson. But now, Falk said, the Bobcats have to get lucky, just the way the San Antonio Spurs were in getting the top pick when Tim Duncan was available in 1997.

               Falk said Jordan has always been a risk-taker, as in when he tried to play minor-league baseball during a hiatus from his NBA career. Falk said this was the right risk, as opposed to limping along with a veteran team that was swept out of its only playoff appearance by the Orlando Magic.

               “This process needed to happen,’’ Falk said. “They’re not trying to run on a patched-up tire. Now they’re getting a new tire.

               “Step one is admitting you’re bad. But the good news is, in the NBA if you get to draft that one guy and you sign a decent free agent, you’re two-thirds of the way there’’ to viable.

               Falk runs a relative small business now, with about a dozen clients. His two first-round prospects in the June draft are former Duke freshman Austin Rivers and former Ohio State power forward Jared Sullinger.

Posted by Observer Sports on May 14, 2012 at 11:43 AM | Permalink


A "new tire?" More like trying to finish a race with a set of four spares.

Posted by: Michael Procton | May 14, 2012 12:29:00 PM

Rick just wanted to congratulate you on your NBA awards this season as you were way off. Seriously do you watch the NBA or is that just part of your title? You write something about the NBA every 2 weeks...what a joke

Posted by: Your Mom | May 14, 2012 12:29:34 PM

This is Falk's opinion, speaking as a businessman. On "limping along with a veteran team": 1. it's much better than barely crawling on the hardwood floors of this league, and 2. there's no "forever' in this league. It was possible to improve on our 2010 roster. Contracts expire; Diaw's did, and Gerald's and Jackson's will, at the end of next season - which evidently opens possibilities for changing and improving a team without making a mess of full seasons in the process.

That talk about the sweep in the first round of playoffs 2010 is getting a bit old, isn't it? It just happened to the current champions, the Mavericks. Sure, it's bad. Sure, some changes will be needed. But I just don't believe Mark Cuban will go bananas, blow up his team, get rid of ALL veteran stars, and then play the NBA lottery, betting on the 1st pick! I think he'll find saner and sounder ways to improve his team.

Also, to say that there is no significant difference between the second through eighth picks in this Draft, it seems far off the mark to me. I think Thomas Robinson is much better than those three players Falk mentioned, and Drummond is probably a better choice than the other two. In my opinion, Kidd-Gilchrist and Harrison Barnes are overrated, and other, less talked about, players should be picked before them.

Posted by: Sandy | May 14, 2012 1:12:56 PM

Rick is a joke. He doesn't even get post-game feed back from the players.

Posted by: TJ | May 14, 2012 1:28:36 PM

If we kept the playoff team in place we would have never had a shot at Davis. We would always be picking 10-15. I disagree with Falk though - Davis is not the only big time recruit. I have three on my board - Davis, Kid-Gilchrist and Thomas Robinson. Robinson is a Zack Randalph/Karl Malone type player who will be great at power forward. Kid-Gilchrist needs to work on his outside shot some but otherwise he is a perfect two or three. Barnes is also a solid three - but I don't think he has the will to win that those other three guys have. Drummand reminds me of Kendrick Perkins - except not as good. Hopefully the Bobcats can get Davis with Kid-Gilchrist or Robinson as the second option. If you end up with Robinson or Kid-Gilchrist then make a run at Chris Kaman as your starting center. Biyombo will be more effective off the bench backing him up for now.

Posted by: Dom | May 14, 2012 1:54:07 PM

Actually - i would make a run at Chris Kaman even if the Bobcats get Anthony Davis. Why? Because I would mold Davis into a Kevin Durant type player - not a center. He can shoot the ball - and he can handle it too. I think he can play three in the NBA - and dominate. Why not? Larry Bird was around 6'9" and played three. Kevin Durant plays three - why not Davis?

Posted by: Dom | May 14, 2012 1:57:57 PM

Sandy, comparing the 2010 Bobcats to the current Mavericks team is just plain wrong. 1st of all, had the Bobcats maintain the same roster from 2010, they would be like $10M over the luxury tax the past 2 season's which is completly stupid for an 7th-8th seed team to do. And by the way, the 2010 Bobcats team was not going to be a better team in 2011, nor 2012. Because they were not going to have lottery picks, nor financial flexibility.

Also, Mark Cuban is about to blow up the roster. The only difference is that the Mavericks have great financial flexibility ths season. Almost half of their team is in a one year contract or in the last year of their contract. Also, Dallas is a fairly big market that help pay for the mistakes Cuban makes. That is the problem with the current NBA small market teams, you have to be perfect and lucky (OKC) or otherwise you have to do what the Bobcats are doing.

Example Washington DC, they have been one of the worst teams since drafting John Wall, know, after 3 years, they are finally showing signs of being competitive. The Bobcats got really bad this year, and they will be a below average entertaining team next season, just like the Cavaliers. Then they will have tons of money and great young kids (assuming they draft Anthony Davis and keep Henderson).

Posted by: RobC | May 14, 2012 1:58:47 PM

Falk's comments are pretty discouraging considering we're probably going to pick 4th. :(

Posted by: apauldds | May 14, 2012 2:37:42 PM

Falk says the 2012 draft will fall off precipitously after a single pick.

“This is a one-player draft,’’ Falk told the Observer Monday, referring to Kentucky freshman big man Anthony Davis.


RealityToday, this is exactly opposite of what you've been thinking and sayin for over a year.

What gives?

Posted by: George Hanson | May 14, 2012 2:50:08 PM

SA, a small market, built their success around the luck of the draw (Tim Duncan) and surrounding him with capable players that no one knew about. However, they would have struggled without Duncan. Anthony Davis is THAT player in this years draft. Anyone with the first pick will take him.

If is unfortunate that we have two young point guards because, as crazy as this may sound, I'm betting that Kendall Marshall will be second among impact players coming out this year. He is not small at 6'4" and he sees the floor and passes like no other point guard....and don't believe that he can't shoot.

Posted by: jmurr | May 14, 2012 3:16:58 PM

Davis will be at best JaVale McGee, we need Robinson.

Posted by: TrueBBallFan | May 14, 2012 3:27:37 PM

RobC, I wasn't comparing the teams, I was only comparing the situations - and only as a loose comparison, which is making my point while also acknowledging the differences you mentioned. Being swept in the first round of playoffs is not a reason to panic, and I preferred a different path toward improving the team, because I HATE to see the Bobcats declining (season '10-'11), to the point of becoming the laughing stock of the NBA ('11-'12) - and onwards to another losing season (though, a better one than the last one), even if we get A. Davis.
As for the luxury tax worries: how do you like Tyrus' big contract ?!
I commented at that time that Raymond became, indeed, too expensive for the Bobcats. But keep all the other starters, don't sign Tyrus on such a big contract and trade (which was possible in 2010) for Ramon Sessions (who, in my opinion, has at least equal potential to Felton and higher potential than DJ).
Then, you don't worry about the luxury tax, you have a team that stays competitive, and you also wait to see what you can do to get better as the various big contracts get to their expiring seasons.

To give up on something good for the sake of something that may - but also, may not - become much better, to take high risks while offering the fans a low grade product for years, sorry, for me this is bad judgment.

Posted by: Sandy | May 14, 2012 3:31:37 PM

falk is exactly right; anything short of davis is not worth the pick; if the bobcats get any ball other than #1, they should talk with both New Orleans and Portland both who have two lottery picks and try to turn it into two reasonably good players since they have so many holes to fill

Posted by: fan | May 14, 2012 5:56:08 PM

you build teams through the draft. < period

you get top picks and you draft a franchise player. when you find the franchise player, you build around him. wallace, chandler, felton, diaw, jackson were a nice team that could have improved to atlanta hawk status BUT the problem was, they were much older than the hawks, worse payroll situation than the hawks, older than the hawks, and the hawks still haven't won anything worthwhile.

what are your goals? strive for mediocrity? no so you blow up the POTENTIALLY mediocre team to try and find better guys. you have to get young guys on the floor. gerald henderson is arguably already on par with where stephen jackson will be this upcoming season. augustin and felton are definitely on par if not augustin with a slight edge even after coming off an injury plagued season.

we get davis and nobody questions these decisions ever again. if we don't, it's very likely we land next year's davis. eventually you land the guy. if you keep playing poker you eventually get a good hand and play it. but you keep folding until you do instead of putting all your chips out only to get caught bluffing with BS cards.

we have a nice young core. we need the one guy. i think falk is right that nobody has separated themselves from the pack as a clear number 2 or 3 pick but i don't think this is a one player draft.

there will be 4 guys in this draft that turn into absolute studs. part of it has to do with luck of who gets drafted where. example.......if barnes goes to washington or charlotte, he will probably be great. if he goes to new orleans to compete with ariza or to sacramento to play third fiddle to cousins and evans, he'll fail. same could be said to gilchrist. but 4 guys will emerge as studs out of this draft just like there's always guys in every draft even the down years.

but we will get the guy, and when we get the guy, we will be great not mediocre. that's the point.

Posted by: charlottean | May 14, 2012 7:45:50 PM

Karma is a bitch! Get ready for the 4th pick!

Posted by: joe cool | May 14, 2012 8:29:01 PM

7 wins and "nice young core" are mutually exclusive conditions.

Posted by: George Hanson | May 14, 2012 9:36:06 PM

Charlottean, of course we'll never agree on this. So, I'm not interested in arguing with you, or with any other true believer in MJ's big gamble.
I'm just setting the record straight on my standpoint.
There are various ways to improve a team gradually, without prior destructive steps:
- you trade up in the draft.
- you draft smart, really smart (which is not going after some of the most famous names in the draft, like H. Barnes and Kidd Gilchrist). Examples of really low draft picks: Tony Parker, Manu Ginobili, Carlos Boozer, etc.
- you trade expiring contracts for either good players, or draft picks.
- you improve through trades.
- you sign quality free agents when the salary cap allows it (2013 for Bobcats).

Kobe wasn't the Lakers' original draft pick. He was a humble 13th pick, traded away by the Hornets before they even knew who that player will be. Then, LA also traded for Shaq. Later on, they got Pau for peanuts. True, Charlotte will never be a magnet for superstars like LA; that doesn't mean you can't make good trades. And to complain about "mediocrity" (a 44-38 record is good and I enjoyed that season; not great, not mediocre, but good), to say "we shouldn't be like the Hawks" - but they finished the regular season with the 4th best record in the East [ranked 5th due to NBA rules], and that's the Bobcats stated, and so remote, goal now!) - all such complaints of yours in the midst of misery and uncertainty on the future, that's totally absurd, to me at least.

Also, you don't know how some great draft prospects will turn out in the NBA. And what if you have the luck of the Blazers in recent years, with Brandon Roy (6th pick) and Greg Oden (1st overall) ?! How is the Wizards' rebuilding project coming along ?! Two seasons after getting the 1st pick overall (and they drafted well) they have the second worst record in the weak Eastern conference and in the whole league! This is why you can't hang all your hopes on high draft picks (not to mention the 'Cats own history, rich in high draft picks).

Why should people accept to be fed crap for years in a row, for uncertain future hopes? I enjoy a team that tries to achieve its best every season, and never sets a limit to its hopes to move up, but does so through solid, responsible moves (as above), not by planning badness in advance.

Again, I'm mot trying to convert any of the fans of the Jordan/Cho approach.
Although it's not the sound way, it might still be successful, with a few strong doses of good luck. I just clarified my thoughts, mainly for the fans who anyway are not sold on the "wreck-and-rebuild" plan. I know, if MJ gets lucky, everybody will be happy. IF...

Posted by: Sandy | May 14, 2012 10:16:33 PM

Sorry for some sloppy, rushed writing on Shaq: he wasn't traded from Orlando, the Lakers signed him as a free agent. The idea is the same, though: he wasn't the Lakers' Draft pick.

Posted by: Sandy | May 15, 2012 12:08:52 AM

This is another guy who needs to have several seats. Is he trying to promote his players. So he is saying the cats only hope is getting davis. I say bs. 4 years from now I think we will be talking about more than davis from this class. I like robinson but I'm not a gm. It is their job to figure out who those players are.

Posted by: crymeariver | May 15, 2012 12:12:13 AM

I am on board with what the cats did this year even though it was painful to follow. They had so many horrible contracts that they start all over again while waiting for those contracts to expire. Honestly, we have made so many awful trades in the last few years that someone should have been fired.

Posted by: Cheeseburgerface | May 15, 2012 8:53:21 AM

Why is it that after 16 years people can't seem to remember CORRECTLY the Kobe situation?

Sandy, KOBE WAS NEVER GOING TO BE A CHARLOTTE HORNET. The Hornets drafted him to TRADE HIM to the Lakers. Had Jerry West not proposed this deal BEFORE THE DRAFT, THE HORNETS WOULD HAVE DRAFTED SOMEONE ELSE. It was a draft and trade all along.

AGAIN. Kobe Bryant was NEVER going to be a Charlotte Hornet.

Posted by: drfritz | May 15, 2012 9:56:21 AM

drfritz, of course the Hornets were not interested to draft Kobe, and they picked him only to trade him to the Lakers, as agreed between teams before the Draft.
But, that wasn't my point at all. The point I was making is that the Lakers got those superstars I mentioned NOT through their own draft picks, but through trading and free agency. This was part of my answer to Charlottean' statement "you build teams through the draft. < period".

It's only fair to add here that L.A. got Andrew Bynum as their own Draft pick (10th), following a rare season when they didn't make the playoffs (2005). It was an example of smart drafting. But the Lakers got there by force of circumstances (all teams have ups and downs), not by gutting their team ON PURPOSE (which is the one thing I don't like about the 'Cats' current rebuilding project).

Posted by: Sandy | May 15, 2012 11:26:09 AM

Let's focus on the real issue here: how bad were Rick's picks for the season ending awards?

Posted by: Sambo | May 15, 2012 3:00:06 PM

The Bobcats need Austin Rivers, Harrison Barnes, and Anthony Davis...

Posted by: P. Wright | May 15, 2012 7:05:11 PM

woah woah woah, that kobe was selected 13th by the hornets is selective memory. The guy worked out for like 3 teams and said he refused to play for any other franchises. we drafted him specifically to trade for divac. nobody higher drafted him because they knew he wasn't going to sign. he said prior that he would sit the whole year before he'd play elsewhere.

i don't remember the list but I think it was philly, lakers, knicks.

there are great players drafted late. no question. indiana has a legit contender built on late picks they developed. but they picked em. you win because you draft a guy and get in a leveraged positition to keep him.

you sign a free agent away from somewhere randomly because you are willing to overpay. you don't win that way. you draft a guy and guys are willing to sign here for their market value to play with a perceived "comer" (see chicago).

san antonio got duncan. without duncan, parker and ginobli might be barbosa and nocioni. but they drafted those guys and they developed them. rookie scale gives you 4-5 years of fixed pay to develop a guy into his prime cheaply. and sign free agents BEFORE signing the young stud to his big extension. see chicago.

the lakers drafted magic no. 1.
boston drafted pierce and rondo and traded al jefferson and jeff green to get kg and jesus.
miami drafted dwayne wade.
dallas technically drafted dirk.
houston drafted olajuwon.
chicago drafted pippen and jordan.
detroit drafted dumars and thomas.

then there's all the contenders that have been to the finals or conference finals

philly drafting AI
new york drafting ewing
indiana drafting miller
utah drafting stockton and malone
seattle drafting payton and kemp

we want to be that. not the atlanta hawks. and as it was before we rebuilt we WERE NOT ABLE TO COMPETE WITH THE HAWKS. we were worse than the hawks with an effed up payroll situation and we were older than the hawks. there was no way to macguyver that into a contender. you had to blow it up.

this season would have been our best season with a felton, jackson, wallace, diaw, chandler or even augustin for felton 5 with brown coaching. and we would not have been better than anybody in the playoffs in the east except MAYBE philly and MAYBE new york.

you barely make the playoffs with a veteran team, you are moving backwards. 30 teams in the league. picking 15th in the draft with no lottery chance at all. awesome.

we need to invest our resources in scouting, not free agents. and barnes and gilchrist might be great players in this league, so I don't know how smart it would be to pass on them for.......? who exactly? this year is an absolute crap shoot after one. last year was pretty similar.

look at the rookie of the year standings after irving and rubio. faried? parsons? shumpert? thomas? that's not an indictment of us because biyombo was obviously not going to be a ROY candidate when we drafted him but he showed major promise. nobody had those guys projected top 10. people thought denver reached for faried. nobody had parsons in the 1st round, yet dude looks like he might be a 15 year starter in the league. same with thomas.

some of it is luck but you have to roll the dice. if someone says, you roll the dice and if it's an even number, then roll again and get an odd, then roll again and get an even number you get $1,000,000.00 OR you can trade your roll for a sandwich and try to make the million other ways.

that's essentially what you're saying.

Posted by: charlottean | May 16, 2012 12:24:52 PM

oh yea and the lakers drafted marc gasol to trade for pau. also drafted derek fisher. last i checked vujacic and farmar and walton were role players on those championship teams too.

saying the lakers didn't draft kobe is like saying the mavericks didn't draft dirk or the bobcats didn't draft biyombo.

Posted by: charlottean | May 16, 2012 2:42:02 PM

charlottean, you're so stubborn and yet, it's usually fun talking bball with you (well, until you get really angry - then, it's no fun).

Besides the star players I mentioned before as low draft picks, you come up with your own selection, to show the importance of getting your stars through the Draft. But here too, you stumble on smart, great, non-lottery picks: the great John Stockton was a 16th pick, Rondo - who was first disregarded and then turned into an elite PG - was a 21st overall, and a stud like Al Jefferson was a 15th. More nice examples? Danny Granger was a 17th, and David Lee was a 30th! Now, Dirk fared better: he was a 9th overall. And Paul Pierce was 10th, just like Bynum! It's usually possible to trade up in the Draft, if all you want is a 9th or 10th overall. But then, it's how you use them: who remembers Mohamed Sene (10th in 2006)?! Yes, you could tell at Draft time that 10th for Bynum will pay off great, but same pick for Sene was a stupid waste (and you know, there are a lot more bad picks, higher than that).

Here we go, to YOUR nicest example: the Lakers didn't do too bad, getting that Magic guy 1st overall in 1979, to join Kareem! How the heck did they do it, after a 47-35 season? Well, they traded up for it, and then they won it by a coin flip between them and the Bulls (different system)!

So, I'm back to my earlier point: drafting smart is rewarding, and doesn't require tanking full seasons. You can draft smart for lower picks, or you can trade up to get a higher pick.

After all the previous draft examples, I'm not gonna go now through all the countless examples of trades and free agents signings that made teams better (but you remember that free agent who took his talents to South Beach; yeah, we'll never hit that kind of jackpot, but that doesn't mean we can't sign good FAs when the salary cap will allow this). It's enough to say that the Bobcats had some horrible trades, but also they made in past years some really good ones, which improved the team.

Posted by: Sandy | May 16, 2012 4:05:30 PM

name a small market contender not built through the draft.

your argument is that we didn't need to get worse to get better because you can get great finds in the 2nd round and late 1st round because other teams have done it.

of course. but the probabilities and the frequencies are so much lower. the spurs have benefited from having great coaching and tim duncan as the cornerstone. danny green wasn't a steal in the 2nd round. he was a REACH to be drafted at all. he was a mediocre college player in a great program with a great group of guys around him. he has benefited greatly from pop and timmy. just like parker and ginobli did. they don't have timmy, we don't even know who those guys are.

getting worse to get better involves acquiring multiple picks to increase the chances of getting it right. every gm in the league gets it wrong. but the more chances they have the more likely they get an automatic one.

look at david kahn. he is the one guy keeping rod higgins from being the biggest idiot in the nba and even HE managed to assemble a sustainable talented nba franchise with a core of love, rubio, williams, pekovic, etc. and he did that on accident while simultaneously overpaying barea and darko to convince them to go there.

if david kahn can do it, rod higgins with the help of rich cho can definitely do it. and minnesota is prime to be a contender for several years. they were probably a playoff team this year if rubio doesn't get hurt. and they are crazy young and with cap room and pieces. we want to be there.

we have made a lot of moves in the past year that have been slept on but we've got a lot of pieces. getting mullens and d.j. white for next to nothing was nice. derrick brown is a great 2nd round pick for us. we get back to back years of top 5 picks and hopefully manage to come up with an extra pick or 2 here or there and we will be built to last, not to be mediocre every other year.

Posted by: charlottean | May 18, 2012 1:18:53 PM

charlottean, when we finished the season at 44-38, we had a good team, not a "mediocre" one. I have no difficulty remembering that the vast majority of the fans liked our team at that time. Then, most people - and the owner above all - had a fit when we got swept in the first round of the playoffs. I didn't like it either. But, put in a perspective, there was plenty of ridiculous overreacting to that failure.
After six seasons, the expansion franchise is finally tasting the playoffs, this first attempt turns sour - and that's it, we go ballistic ?!

Then, bossman decides it's not worth spending too much on THAT roster because, you see, they were so bad in the playoffs, and INSTEAD of making a plan for improvement, simply decides to spend less! There was NO other plan at that time - as you also have commented. So, we start the '10-'11 season with a clearly weaker roster, coach Brown (for whom, always, the only way is up, and who had no patience to deal with a weakened team) feels disgusted and loses any appetite for coaching this team (and lets his players feel this, too!). Result: from a team with a winning record we turn into pitiful losers, and a disgusted LB is replaced with the much more patient Paul Silas. The coaching change brings the team from bad (under LB) to mediocre in 2011 (under Silas - which was the best possible with that roster).

My point here: we had a good (not great) team, and MJ and Higgins made it worse, without any plan and any perspective. Only AFTER things turned sour (season '10-'11), more and more fans started to really panic about the team's direction (for good reason: there was NO such direction then), and started offering a variety of ideas to turn things around.
My friend, I remember you started talking about blowing up the team, keeping only a young core and betting on future high draft picks BEFORE the management actually started their rebuilding project. Under this project, we made history last season (worst NBA record ever!).

I disagreed, I still do - but now, this is history. The playoffs team was blown up, we are left with a parody of an NBA team (the results speak for themselves, as Higgins - one of the main culprits for this mess - said) and with hopes for brighter days, IF we get all the luck we need.

We have two very different standpoints on this, and that just won't change. I think that every season is equally important, that those in charge of a sports team have an obligation to offer the fans the best possible product every season, and I can't put up with badness by design. You think that some hypothetical future success can justify getting worse first.
1. Getting worse is the only sure thing here, so it can't justify a very uncertain future success; you're building on expectations of a lot of good luck, but in real life many things can go awry, and 2. even if in 2014 and/or in 2015 the 'Cats will become one of the top four teams in the East (and it's so iffy), I still don't agree that this will ever justify the wrecked seasons. Moving up in the best league in the world has to take years and requires patience - whether you go by this kind of "shock therapy", or by the gradual approach that I prefer (which prevents the grief of bad seasons).

{Quickly, on other young teams that had high draft picks: how are the Wizards, the Cavaliers, even Portland, doing now? And your T'wolves example: their becoming a top team also belongs to an uncertain future; they just might lose their best young talents before they get there...).

The fans judge this by the results. You know how many are upset after the last two seasons. IF the rebuilding will bring real success, everybody will be happy. If not, watch out for the fans' reactions...

Posted by: Sandy | May 18, 2012 4:55:33 PM

woah woah woah........we had a 7th seed that year and we couldn't afford to keep it together. if we had gone to the 2nd round, jordan might of said "alright let's pay some tax and let these guys play it out and see what happens" but we got demolished in the first round.

you can't justify one of the highest payrolls in the league for a mediocre team. you're throwing "good" around when 44-38 is just above .500 and 7th seed leaves us what? around 14th or 15th best? sounds pretty mediocre to me.

we were still just under the tax last year without chandler and felton. (now mind you we had no business making that trade for dampier and taking back that much salary that was just idiotic. i've said that a million times) but felton got what? 7.5x3 years and chandler was making 14 million last year that we were able to cut down to carroll and najera's....~7.5ish. When you remember that the tax was dollar for dollar.....you're talking about paying insane amounts of money. It was something like a $30mil swing just to let felton and chandler go because of the amount saved on tax + salary + the amount received from tax by being a non tax payer. you just can't argue with that based on how chandler had basically been splitting time with a rejuvenated mohammed at that point and felton had just gotten dogged by jameer nelson.

they should have blown the whole ship up right then and there or made smarter moves in dealing with the center and pg situations , but the truth is you can't build a contender out of a team financially strapped with poor attendance and built around guys on the wrong side of 30 (jackson and wallace).

look at the hawks right now. they haven't sniffed the conference finals and they are going to have to make major moves this offseason because they can't afford to pay the amount of tax they will have to pay in order to remain mediocre. that's the hawks NOW. we were never even THAT good and we were in their financial position 2 years ago. think about that and really let that sit in because that's the part you fail to understand. it wasn't even possible to keep that group together even if we wanted. Not tyrus thomas included. And if you were picking between felton and thomas last june, everybody was picking thomas. not just MJ. everybody. and we weren't the highest bidder supposedly.

you gotta remember that wallace played out of his mind in 2009-10. He was averaging like 13 rebounds a game to start the season. He made the all-star team. he was NOT that guy last year.

as for the teams with the high picks..........washington had a gluttony of garbage players on their roster that they began clearing out by moving young and mcgee and will probably continue to do so this offseason. wall was the only top 5 pick of the bunch and he's still there and still showing a ton of a promise. they will have another high pick (possibly even *cringe* davis) to build with. they are a few steps ahead of us yet if we get davis or hit a homerun with this draft we immediately leap frog because of the pieces we have already.

cleveland is looking pretty good......irving and thompson both looked great as rookies....not sure if you saw them play at all this year but future is bright in cleveland. they are ahead of us by a year in the process.

portland endured years of success and caught the injury bug. and not just any injury but SEVERAL devastating ones. but they STILL have aldridge as their guy and the STILL have rights to match any offer on batum, they have wes matthews and they have a TON of cap room. they aren't bad off at all assuming aldridge comes back healthy.

minnesota won't lose the players that matter. they have love locked up for a while, rubio and williams in year 2 of rookie scale and a TON OF CAP room to retain them with. they'll let beasley and randolph walk or sign and trade for other assets. the only real question mark will be pekovic after this coming year he will be unrestricted. I would imagine they will work to extend this summer if they can. They are in an insanely enviable situation right now. they have the guy, they have the compliment pieces and they have the cap room to retain it.

They are a year behind the pacers success wise but might be better suited to make the big run because if you compare love to........hibbert? love is locked up for several years. if you compare love to granger......love is just on another playing field. really than both those guys. minnesota missed on plenty of picks but they eventually got enough of them right to be in this situation. that's what happens with this plan. even the idiots get it right.

we didn't have to be HORRIBLE. we didn't have to. I never said that's what we needed to do 4 years ago. but 2 years ago? after the playoffs? with THAT situation? we needed to blow it up. there was no way we were contending and we were deep in the tax. We had no choice.

Posted by: charlottean | May 18, 2012 6:14:19 PM

Hawks "mediocre" ?! They had the 4th best record in the East this season - matching MJ's stated goal. I'm not very concerned with their next steps, but one thing I don't expect of them is to blow up their team and sink to the bottom to play the lottery.

All the four examples of rebuilding projects (above) continue being badly losing teams, after doing very well in various Drafts. As for the Blazers' injuries, that's precisely part of my point - about the uncertainty of projected future success. And before you praise the T'wolves again, just take a look at their history of misery. Losers for the last seven seasons, with a total record of 169-389 (.302). If that's a way to build a successful future, they can keep it to themselves.

The list of the lottery picks we already had and used is known: 2nd, 3rd, 5th, 7th, 8th, two 9ths, two 13ths. And we also have on the roster a 4th overall (not our own pick, but through trade). It sure helped us build a great team, so why not go this route again ?!

As for the salary cap situation in 2010, it could've been resolved without such a weakening of the team, and also without going into luxury tax, but also, without that combination of stinginess and stupidity, as evidenced by the Chandler trade (I already posted on this in more detail above, so I'm not gonna repeat what I already said in this discussion thread; I will only add that Tyrus was not a proven valuable starter - he was a reserve with serioud flaws - so giving him that big contract wasn't justified).


I told you from the beginning, we have very different points of view, and we will NOT agree.

You say "the Bobcats had no choice", I say "sure they had, there is always more than one option". You say you're convinced we'll achieve success this way and no other way, I say "not sure at all about this way", and there were other ways to improve, over several years (not anymore, options we had then have already been killed by the steps the management took since 2010). You say you're ready to go through full losing seasons for the sake of future projected success, I say bad things can always happen (see the Bulls in this post-season), but to plan for badness is unacceptable.

At this point, we either keep going in circles and repeat the same points over and over again, just adding some more details, or, we agree to disagree. I know (from past experience) that you don't mind the former; I take the latter.

Posted by: Sandy | May 18, 2012 11:54:18 PM

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