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  • #76
    Brandon wrote:
    I was having a discussion with an informed observer of the league, and also I had been thinking about this for a long time.

    I wouldn't run an organization the way most of them are today. It's blatantly obvious that you need superstar players to win big in the NBA. If you don't have them, you don't have anything. You're just farting around on the margins.

    Basically, there are only about 30 players at any given period of time who should be paid more than league minimum/rookie contract money. And never more than 3 years at a time.

    For example: This past season, the Raps got very similar production out of Derozan and Alan Anderson. Their WS/48 were very similar. Yet Derozan made almost $2 million more. And he gets a huge raise for the next 4 years, making almost $9 million more per year than Anderson did. Anderson was also on a one-year deal, easily gotten rid of.

    How much better or worse off would the Raps be if they had not re-signed Bargnani, Derozan, Calderon, and Amir Johnson? Then there's the FA contracts for Kapono (ugh), Kleiza, Fields, et al? Sure, they would have had losing seasons. But they had losing seasons anyway. What they would have is more draft picks, a lot more cap space, and the freedom to pursue superstar players who really do make a difference on the court.

    The Raps are not the only organization to make these mistakes. There are big contracts for replacement-level players all over the place in the NBA. In a way, it helps redistribute wealth, since those bad contracts are sent by good teams to bad teams in exchange for draft picks. Bad teams should be accumulating draft picks to try to strike gold and acquire cheap (rookie contract) labour.

    HOW TO DO THE THING

    Just allow your draft picks to test the market as restricted free agents. If they get a big contract from some doltish organization, so be it. If not, you can bring them back on your terms. Shorter, cheaper contracts that don't kill your cap. And what difference does it make if they do leave? You just spend a middling draft pick on a replacement player. For example, the Raps didn't need to re-sign Johnson, because they drafted Ed Davis.

    Eventually, you either end up with a good, cheap young team with a supporting cast a superstar might like to join, or you strike gold in the draft and get yourself a hall-of-famer who makes a big difference and now you're a contender.
    I think all of these observations are axioms, so the question is, why do so many teams refuse to do things this way? We think it's possible dumb executives and owners panic and bid against themselves. Also, I think in Colangelo's case as I've said before, he wanted to keep his draft picks because of ego: he drafted them, so therefore they must be great. Just a tautology. It's also possible, though I find it almost unthinkable, that some GMs and owners believe that you still don't know what you've got in a player by the end of the 3 or 4 year rookie contract. Maybe they'll develop into a superstar.
    Your strategy doesn't make much sense and seems quite contradictory.

    In general, I think teams like the Spurs and Pacers have proven this playoffs that a solid TEAM, built of good-to-great players who put the team first, can be quite successful. The Heat are the exception to the rule. The Spurs have 3 great players who were once considered superstars, but they're in the twilight of their careers and the team has been fuelled as much by their younger role players (ie: Leonard, Green, Neal, Splitter, etc...).

    1st bold - I think your player evaulation is way off, if you honestly believe a league with 450 roster spots is comprised of 30 superstars and 420 minimum-wage players. There are several tiers of skilled and role players in that massive gray area between superstar and min-wage; the league-wide talent pool is not nearly that black & white

    2nd bold - a team managed that way, offering only minimum contracts or 3-year superstar contracts, will never be able to attract or keep talented players, due to supply & demand; players will get bigger and/or longer offers from any of the other 29 teams. A team-building strategy like that is useless, since no team exists in a bubble

    3rd bold - for a team taking the "suck & luck" infinite rebuilding strategy to the max, the idea of letting talented (but not superstar) young players coming off their rookie contracts walk for nothing, as a result of not matching RFA offer sheets, is the worst type of asset management possible. That sort of team should never allow a player to leave for nothing; every player should be traded (or S&T) for draft picks, to increase the chances of getting lucky in each draft.

    4th bold - a team managed like that, in perpetual 'tank' mode, with absolutely no loyalty to their players, will completely turn off fans, players, coaches, agents, etc... to the point that no good player (let alone one of those 30 superstars) will ever sign or re-sign with the team. Just getting lucky and drafting a superstar talent player (or players, if lightning strikes more than once) is not enough to guarantee success; you need to surround those superstars with good-to-great players, solid veteran role players, have a team culture/mentality of hard work and winning, develop solid on-court chemistry and have unwavering fan support... there's no way a team managed like that would ever have any of those intangibles. That superstar talent would go to waste, until the first chance they have to leave town.

    Comment


    • #77
      Brandon wrote:
      I was having a discussion with an informed observer of the league, and also I had been thinking about this for a long time.

      I wouldn't run an organization the way most of them are today. It's blatantly obvious that you need superstar players to win big in the NBA. If you don't have them, you don't have anything. You're just farting around on the margins.

      Basically, there are only about 30 players at any given period of time who should be paid more than league minimum/rookie contract money. And never more than 3 years at a time.

      For example: This past season, the Raps got very similar production out of Derozan and Alan Anderson. Their WS/48 were very similar. Yet Derozan made almost $2 million more. And he gets a huge raise for the next 4 years, making almost $9 million more per year than Anderson did. Anderson was also on a one-year deal, easily gotten rid of.

      How much better or worse off would the Raps be if they had not re-signed Bargnani, Derozan, Calderon, and Amir Johnson? Then there's the FA contracts for Kapono (ugh), Kleiza, Fields, et al? Sure, they would have had losing seasons. But they had losing seasons anyway. What they would have is more draft picks, a lot more cap space, and the freedom to pursue superstar players who really do make a difference on the court.

      The Raps are not the only organization to make these mistakes. There are big contracts for replacement-level players all over the place in the NBA. In a way, it helps redistribute wealth, since those bad contracts are sent by good teams to bad teams in exchange for draft picks. Bad teams should be accumulating draft picks to try to strike gold and acquire cheap (rookie contract) labour.

      HOW TO DO THE THING

      Just allow your draft picks to test the market as restricted free agents. If they get a big contract from some doltish organization, so be it. If not, you can bring them back on your terms. Shorter, cheaper contracts that don't kill your cap. And what difference does it make if they do leave? You just spend a middling draft pick on a replacement player. For example, the Raps didn't need to re-sign Johnson, because they drafted Ed Davis.

      Eventually, you either end up with a good, cheap young team with a supporting cast a superstar might like to join, or you strike gold in the draft and get yourself a hall-of-famer who makes a big difference and now you're a contender.

      I think all of these observations are axioms, so the question is, why do so many teams refuse to do things this way? We think it's possible dumb executives and owners panic and bid against themselves. Also, I think in Colangelo's case as I've said before, he wanted to keep his draft picks because of ego: he drafted them, so therefore they must be great. Just a tautology. It's also possible, though I find it almost unthinkable, that some GMs and owners believe that you still don't know what you've got in a player by the end of the 3 or 4 year rookie contract. Maybe they'll develop into a superstar.
      Your post hits at the heart of the max player and, to a lesser extent, salary cap/CBA rules. If the market ruled player salaries you'd probably see a guy like LeBron or Kobe making $30M plus. The mid level exception (which has become smaller each of the last 2 CBA negotiations since its introduction) has also created an artificial value for average NBA talent.

      As to why NBA teams don't do things the way you suggested. I can think of a few reasons.

      1) Not all players drafted become legit NBA talent. In fact the average career of an NBA player is 4 years. The amount of players with the talent (even if it is not superstar talent) to compete and make a difference at the NBA level is limited even when talking about role players.

      2) I wonder if your system would again artificially raise the price of average players (even more so than the MLE). From your example of course, you would not pay the players but that only creates a bigger disparity in the talent of a team run this way versus 'traditional' ways. If a team is not able to land a superstar talent, they can be screwed for a very long time.

      3) How long is sponsorships and the fan base prepared to cheer for a stinker? Sacramento was a city that had a winning team and one of the best fan bases in the league (100% sell out from 2002-2007 and could have been earlier but ESPN site doesn't have before 2002). Ownership then got cheap (forced or not, they were cheap, bottom line) and they went to the bottom of the league (29th) in 2 years. When the fan base aborts the franchise, the whole situation becomes a catch-22.

      4) There are only 2 rounds of drafted players. On a rotating basis of managing your roster like this if you don't draft really good players who stick in the league you are likely to never have a supporting cast.... let alone franchise talent.

      5) As LeBron showed in Cleveland, a winning team is not enough. James could not win in Cleveland with the players he had around him so he left when he could. Going this route might land a franchise talent but it is not guaranteed to keep him.

      6) What happens when you get one of the 30 players worth a huge NBA contract but have no supporting cast (the Amir's, Calderon's, and Fields')? Just like the hierarchy of needs, once players have their bottom levels completed/secured, they start to long for esteem and self actualization. Once the desire of money is completed, the desire to win and create a legacy kicks in. If this can't be done with the team who drafted the player, the player will be unhappy and look to leave.

      7) What about guys like this year's hero Danny Green? He was in and out of the league until circumstance and opportunity came together for him to become a difference maker. Under the system you described might he never get a shot at the NBA again after being cut by Cleveland?

      8) Would this type of system water down the NBA? The NBA prides itself on being the best league in the world. Would this system you describe send players 'worth' more than minimum off to Europe where they can make 3-5x as much?

      9) The idea of maximizing assets. If another team is willing to offer a contract to your player, and you don't feel he is worth it, do you then ignore what the market is telling you and lose the asset for nothing? In your system it is extremely hard to find NBA talent, let alone retain it. In Denver, Ujiri showed the value of good players even on over valued contracts. Afflalo and Nene both were quickly turned in to other assets.



      I'm not saying your idea is a bad one. In fact certain aspects of it are spot on. On the whole though I don't think it is sustainable or realistic. The one thing I most definitely agree with is the idea of Restricted Free Agency. Colangelo totally dropped the ball on this on more than one occasion. RFA offers so much benefit to the team holding the rights that unless the players is obviously a franchise or all-star talent it makes no sense not to take advantage of it.

      Comment


      • #78
        Brandon wrote:
        Alright, thanks for the reply.

        We have a difference of opinion on a point you made: That there are "30 superstars and 420 minimum-wage players". It's not quite that extreme. But it might as well be. The 420 guys you mentioned aren't going to do for you what David Robinson did for the Spurs as a rookie (+35 wins, 1st in the western conference). You think that perhaps if you graphed the talent, it would look like a 45-degree straight line from lowest to highest. I think the advanced stats show, in all sports, it's more like the letter "L" on its side.

        If the Spurs didn't have Duncan and Parker, they'd be ... looking for two guys like Duncan and Parker. They wouldn't be in the finals.

        I didn't say superstars should be on 3-year deals. I said middling guys should be on short term deals like that. You can break the bank for a guy like Robinson, who instantly transforms your team into a championship contender. Pay them whatever you can arrange, the sky's the limit. It's the other guys that don't matter, because one is as good as another.

        And if the other teams want to pay middling players big, cap killer contracts then fine. It's their funeral.
        As for a graph, I don't think the talent dispersal would be a 45-degree straight line or a laying down L. I think there would be several peaks, at various talent levels. Role players would be a peak at a lower talent level, but they are just as critical to a team's success as the most talented superstar.

        Bold - I suggest you re-read your original message, because that's exactly what you said:

        Basically, there are only about 30 players at any given period of time who should be paid more than league minimum/rookie contract money. And never more than 3 years at a time.
        I still argue that by taking such a hard-line stance for all the mid-tier talent players between "superstars" and "min wage", you'd be alienating all those players and their agents. I also think that by implementing this strategy for a number of years (because it could take decades to luck into drafting a superstar future-HOF'er), you'd completely alienate your fanbase.
        Last edited by CalgaryRapsFan; Mon Jun 17, 2013, 06:32 PM.

        Comment


        • #79
          Matt52 wrote: View Post
          Your post hits at the heart of the max player and, to a lesser extent, salary cap/CBA rules. If the market ruled player salaries you'd probably see a guy like LeBron or Kobe making $30M plus. The mid level exception (which has become smaller each of the last 2 CBA negotiations since its introduction) has also created an artificial value for average NBA talent.

          As to why NBA teams don't do things the way you suggested. I can think of a few reasons.

          1) Not all players drafted become legit NBA talent. In fact the average career of an NBA player is 4 years. The amount of players with the talent (even if it is not superstar talent) to compete and make a difference at the NBA level is limited even when talking about role players.

          2) I wonder if your system would again artificially raise the price of average players (even more so than the MLE). From your example of course, you would not pay the players but that only creates a bigger disparity in the talent of a team run this way versus 'traditional' ways. If a team is not able to land a superstar talent, they can be screwed for a very long time.

          3) How long is sponsorships and the fan base prepared to cheer for a stinker? Sacramento was a city that had a winning team and one of the best fan bases in the league (100% sell out from 2002-2007 and could have been earlier but ESPN site doesn't have before 2002). Ownership then got cheap (forced or not, they were cheap, bottom line) and they went to the bottom of the league (29th) in 2 years. When the fan base aborts the franchise, the whole situation becomes a catch-22.

          4) There are only 2 rounds of drafted players. On a rotating basis of managing your roster like this if you don't draft really good players who stick in the league you are likely to never have a supporting cast.... let alone franchise talent.

          5) As LeBron showed in Cleveland, a winning team is not enough. James could not win in Cleveland with the players he had around him so he left when he could. Going this route might land a franchise talent but it is not guaranteed to keep him.

          6) What happens when you get one of the 30 players worth a huge NBA contract but have no supporting cast (the Amir's, Calderon's, and Fields')? Just like the hierarchy of needs, once players have their bottom levels completed/secured, they start to long for esteem and self actualization. Once the desire of money is completed, the desire to win and create a legacy kicks in. If this can't be done with the team who drafted the player, the player will be unhappy and look to leave.

          7) What about guys like this year's hero Danny Green? He was in and out of the league until circumstance and opportunity came together for him to become a difference maker. Under the system you described might he never get a shot at the NBA again after being cut by Cleveland?

          8) Would this type of system water down the NBA? The NBA prides itself on being the best league in the world. Would this system you describe send players 'worth' more than minimum off to Europe where they can make 3-5x as much?

          9) The idea of maximizing assets. If another team is willing to offer a contract to your player, and you don't feel he is worth it, do you then ignore what the market is telling you and lose the asset for nothing? In your system it is extremely hard to find NBA talent, let alone retain it. In Denver, Ujiri showed the value of good players even on over valued contracts. Afflalo and Nene both were quickly turned in to other assets.



          I'm not saying your idea is a bad one. In fact certain aspects of it are spot on. On the whole though I don't think it is sustainable or realistic. The one thing I most definitely agree with is the idea of Restricted Free Agency. Colangelo totally dropped the ball on this on more than one occasion. RFA offers so much benefit to the team holding the rights that unless the players is obviously a franchise or all-star talent it makes no sense not to take advantage of it.
          A couple of more thoughts:

          10) Where would Indiana have been this year had they not matched the max contract offer from Portland? I think most agree Hibbert is overpaid. I can't imagine putting him the same category of a LeBron in an open market. However the market dictated he was a max player and had the Pacers not ponied up, do they make the Eastern conference finals taking it to 7 games?

          11) What about guys who take longer to develop? Most people are not at their physical peak until 24-25 years of age - especially tall people.

          Comment


          • #80
            Brandon wrote:
            1) I never said rely completely on the draft. I said keep your cap space by not signing middling players to long-term cap killer contracts. Obviously, drafting efficiently is a good recipe for success in all team sports, and this is independent of any "system".

            2) The Raps got numerous middling players for next to nothing -- Weems, Anderson, et al. who were as good as Derozan, or made as much difference anyway. I argue for signing those types of guys to short-term deals to save cap space and therefore flexibility.

            3) The Raps have been doing exactly the opposite of what I'm talking about for 5 years and the fans have stuck by them despite their system's obvious failure. I want to make this point though, and this may differentiate me from you. I see no difference between a 20-win season, and a 40-win season. Teams can have 5 straight 20-win seasons, or 5 straight 40-win seasons, and to me you're not a contender either way. The quality of your middling players may be good or bad, but a loser is a loser.

            4) As with my answer to 1 -- it's no secret that any successful team has to draft efficiently -- that means bringing in more picks in trades and not blowing those picks on guys who polish the bench with their arses.

            5) Cleveland is a great example of mostly doing things the wrong way -- what the hell was that Larry Hughes contract about? He was a contract year hero who was never more than a high-volume low-efficiency shooter who couldn't shoot (sorta like Rudy Gay and Demar Derozan). Ferry blew his cap space, set the franchise back years, and pushed Lebronniac out the back door. Colangelo gave Derozan almost the same amount of money Ferry gave Hughes.

            6) I think you keep cap space open and try to bring in more superstars and better players as a supporting cast. If the ball player wants to leave, trade him and get something back.

            7) I don't see why Green wouldn't get another shot. I wouldn't bid against myself to give him a longterm deal that kills my cap. I might keep him around if it's easy to get rid of him.

            8) It's not my responsibility running one team to make sure middling players are paid enough. I only want to make my team into a championship contender. If there's more money in Europe, the NBA will have to deal with that issue. The CBA is what it is. Note that if it were up to me, I would do away with the cap, the luxury tax, the draft and replace them with real revenue sharing.

            9) There's a flip side to that coin -- what if the contract the player comes back with is less than you thought -- as in the case a year ago with Marc Gasol? I think the principles should be applied in a relatively ruthless way. Gasol makes a big difference on the court -- a huge difference. Nobody was around with cap space to spend on him because they're all full of crap contracts. I really think this is relatively straightforward. If you've got a guy that adds 35 wins like DR did for the Spurs, the sky's the limit. Otherwise, why the hell bother.

            10) A 7-footer that can do what he can do is a rarity. He's a max player.

            11) I maintain that if you look through basketball history, by year 3 or 4 you always know what you've got. In the rare cases where that's not completely true, I'll live with the consequences. Bargnani and Derozan, for example, are now what they were as rookies.

            BTW, Dallas and San Antonio already pretty much do things this way. When the Mavs re-signed Devin Harris off his rookie deal, they immediately traded him because Cuban wasn't happy with the length of the resulting contract (5 years, salary doubled in years 5-8). And Harris subsequently became an all-star. The Mavs won it all.
            Don't forget what your original post asked:

            I think all of these observations are axioms, so the question is, why do so many teams refuse to do things this way?
            I attempted to answer that question. The biggest detriment is the CBA and one point I left out was the floor for salaries for each team. If a team does not spend the floor amount (this season $49M) the difference of the money is divided among the players. So theoretically a 20 win team with a payroll of $25M could see each player receive a bonus of nearly $2M at the end of the year.


            I don't think your points above are in sync with the points I made. Regardless, I was merely trying to offer insights with the current system as to why I don't think teams do things the way you have described. To your points above:

            1) I totally agree. Long term cap killing contracts are bad for every team. A shit team like Toronto has shown it to be a true and an elite/contending team like Cleveland with LBJ has shown it to be true.

            2) I agree again. DeRozan's extension was beyond stupid given his skill set and the leverage Toronto held.

            3) Disagreement here. Teams very rarely go from bottom feeders to championship winning or contending teams. THe 2008 Celtics come to mind, the Spurs with an injured David Robinson, and little else. Even the Miami Heat were a first round playoff team before the summer of 2010. I do not think it is realistic for teams to go from 20 wins to contending. There has to be a progression. Memphis showed this as did OKC and Indiana (using examples of recent teams who are contending). While you as a fan might not see much difference in a 20 win and 40 win team, I can guarantee you the majority of fans (ie. attendance) and sponsorship disagree. I respect your opinion but it covers a very narrow scope and is black and white.

            4) Whether it is draft or free agency, your whole premise relies on getting superstar talent while having a roster of high value complimentary players on the cheap. It sounds good in theory but the practicality of it is bordering on impossible over the course of many seasons. Even San Antonio has had to pay middling talent much larger contracts than minimum: Richard Jefferson 4 years/$38M; Boris Diaw 2 years/$9M; Matt Bonner 4 years/$16M; Splitter 3 years/$12M. Jefferson flamed out, Diaw plays 16mpg in playoffs, Bonner plays 14mpg and does not meet the criteria you've laid out, Splitter took half his contract (1.5years) to become a valuable piece.

            5) Cleveland is an awesome example of what not to do with a superstar, no question. They blew their cap space on a shit player and then had to keep rolling that contract over for other shit/overpaid players - much like the sequence of events for Colangelo with JO to Marion to Turk to Barbosa.

            6) This ignores the situation Toronto eventually found themselves in with Bosh. A team is not going to give up valuable assets for a player who could bolt in free agency and is unwilling to sign an extension. Once a player refuses to sign an extension (and the new CBA rules make it in the players best interest to NOT sign an extension but to hit unrestricted free agency) you are over the barrel when it comes to negotiating. This situation also ignores the cap holds in the current CBA and the ability to sign players once over the cap. You can't sign free agents without renouncing your own free agents or cap holds. As your example implies, once you sign your superstar player and you go looking for more to pair with him you then only have minimum contracts to round out your roster. There is little to no hope of continuity or building which is one of the pillars of the San Antonio organization. At some point you are going to need to pay these middling cap killing contracts.

            7) I don't think your system would have allowed Green to sign a 3 year, $12M contract.

            8) This is where I am finding a lot of contradiction. You ask why teams don't run in the manner you describe but then ignore the realities of the CBA. You are correct though: the CBA is what it is. Whether you would do away with it and other things or not is not the issue. The issue is why don't teams operate in the manner you describe, and I would add, within the parameters of the current CBA.

            9) One year ago no other team would have got Marc Gasol because he was a restricted free agent. Having the cap space is great but what good is it if you can't get players you want or add value. It will be very interesting to see what happens with Houston this summer in their pursuit of Howard... although I find this a bit puzzling considering they already have a C who creates an above average impact on the court getting paid 60% less than what Howard would make.

            10) Hibbert is a max contract?
            He averaged 11.9 ppg on 45% shooting (has never shot over 50%, struggles earlier this year due to contract expectations, 47% for career) and 74% from the line.
            8.3 rebounds.
            2.6 blocks.

            Your premise began with there only being 30 guys in the league worth big money. This list has 24 players and Hibbert comes in at 23 for WP/48mins. Just on NBA C's with your assertion that Hibbert is an NBA max worthy player, based on simple and advanced statistics one could make the argument that every NBA C who is slightly better than average is a max player candidate.

            11) I am in agreement here. I give a little more leeway for bigs. However, even San Antonio pay for potential. They did it with Green and they did it with Splitter. Toronto did it with Bargnani and it back fired; did it with Johnson and it paid off; and did it with DeRozan and I expect results closer to Bargnani. The difference between SA and TOR, of course, is the amount of dollars involved and with that I again am in agreement with you.



            I talked a little about San Antonio in the post. I 100% disagree on Dallas though. Before Cuban broke up his championship team he was one of the most prolific and irresponsible spenders in the league. Whether it was through free agency or trades, he had some awful, awful contracts go through his roster. Diop, Haywood, Carroll, Najera, Tim Thomas, Dampier, Josh Howard (which is a good example of how a productive player can turn in to an unproductive) are off the top of my head.

            Comment


            • #81
              Brandon wrote:
              Matt, not going to quote you because the posts are too damn long with the quotes.

              The CBA: I think the league wants caps/taxes, restrictions on trading first round picks, drafts, vet minimums, maximums, exceptions, and the rest of it because the commissioner is worried that the owners and their yes-men executives are so stupid that without such a system, two or three teams would constantly dominate while the rest of them would haemorrhage money. In other words, 'we must protect you idjits from yourselves'. I think this is the reason teams don't do things the way I described.

              Hibbert: Centers and big forwards don't do the 30/15 thing anymore because the league has become so backcourt-centric. How many of the players on that list of 24 are 7-footers with wide bodies capable of negating the most obvious scoring route, ie. shooting at the rim? Not JV, not Amir Johnson (more on him below), not Chris Bosh, not the Lopez bros., not most of the guys on that list.

              Amir Johnson: [Note: I erased along tirade I had entered here about how he sucks and is overrated because of his high-energy style of play. I don't want to turn this into some sort of emotional outburst. They shouldn't have made it harder to ship him the hell out of town by giving him 5 years. Now, I don't want to hear anything more about the Amir Johnsons of the world.]
              The CBA: Teams aren't run the way you say because they can't. You do have a lot of good ideas though and I am in more agreement than you may realize.

              Hibbert: The use of 7 footer is a selective as is body type and serves only to make a point you have selected. I thought the point of paying out huge contracts was to pay players that had a significant impact on winning? Who cares if the C is 6'10" (like Dwight Howard) or 235lbs (like Larry Sanders)?

              Amir Johnson: I'm not sure how he deserves a tirade. I think he is a great third big. He can play PF or C and plays with energy. He is exactly the type of player teams with superstars need - creates a positive impact without the ball. Big men come at a premium due to supply and demand (which is another point your proposition ignores).

              Comment


              • #82
                Just a few sidenotes:

                I think the vet minimum salaries and such are not there because of the owners and Stern, but because of the players union. There are a lot more average players than top players and the union represents this middle class more than anything else.

                There aren't 7 footers that do 30/15 because their development stinks. Players usually aren't growing up in a system that is put in place to make them the best players at their peak, but because (and this is more true the younger they are) their teams and coaches don't get anything out of them being very skilled at 25 years old when they are 12. For their coaches and teams, results matter (for sponsorshipdeals and such). So, when they continuously face smaller opponents they are just taught to use their significant size difference, not their skill. That's how you get players like Tyson Chandler who always dunked on and overpowerd his smaller opponents, but never ever developed a post game. That's how you get a player like Hibbert shooting close to 40% pre-allstar game because when faced up with other big players and not having the advantage they had when they were young, the lack the skill. How many American bigs can pass like Pau and Marc Gasol or shoot free throws like Valanciunas? Those guys grew up in a system where, for a large part, winning at a young age takes a backseat to developing them for the pros.

                Comment


                • #83
                  Greg Popovich agrees with you.

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