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  • #16
    OptimalOptimist wrote: View Post
    The Hawks were coached by Mike Woodson, for what's it's worth. And can you say that they had a clear cut identity? Also, behind their core, they didn't had anything interesting. The Raptors already have more depth than the Hawks did.

    My points are that Raptors should continue doing things/transactions that respect the team philosophy/culture/identity that is heavily linked to DD and AJ. Role players and depth chart following that really matter.

    Ross scored 51 points in a game that actually amounted to something (read not like Brewer).

    You see flashes of potential as a deadly shooter, flashy passer and good ballhandler, not even mentioning athleticism. DD is a 23yo all-star who has improved significantly every seasons in the league. Remember the critics saying he should improve as a playmaker and as a rebounder? Well he did upgrade these numbers.

    JV shows that he can be and become a really good 2 way center.

    2Pat is actually a stretch four that can defend, how rare are these?

    I think that we, as fans, tend to undervalue our own talent.
    I agree.... I think Indiana was overrated and we're actually a lot closer to Indiana's level than most people think. If the Pacers lose Lance and we tweaked our roster just a little bit (add a real SF and a good backup C), I can see us surpassing them next year.

    Comment


    • #17
      Marz wrote: View Post
      I'm confused. The Pacers made it to the Easter Conference Finals and lost to a team with superior talent, three future hall of famers (four if we consider Bosh), and a shit ton of veteran players that know how to get things done. I'd say what the Pacers have done is pretty damn impressive.

      The vibe seems to be that if the Pacers hadn't swapped Scola for Hansbrough, hadn't traded Granger for Turner, or hadn't signed Bynum, then Hansbrough would continue to post his incredible PER, Granger would have provided tonnes of veteran leadership to push to game 7 or beyond, and Hibbert wouldn't have turned into a shell of his former self. This is simply inconclusive. The Pacers HAD to improve, and they tried, but still came up short. Why is this bad? The Stockton-Malone era consistently failed, too, and they had a more "consistent identity". I'll take a Stockton-Malone era in Toronto any day of the week.

      If the right package for Amir or DeRozan comes along, you do it. The same applies to any player. We do not have an identity yet. We have one over-achieving season. And if we keep this core intact, we will not have enough talent to beat the Heat in a seven game series, no matter how you slice it.
      If you break up the core you will not be able to beat the Heat in a seven game series either! Continuity/Talent/Stability.....the BC era is gone my friend. The whole point of the OP's post was to show how trading the heart/soul/players of your team can destroy team chemistry.

      What's with the infatuation with trading our best players? I rarely hear other fans around the league so enthusiastic about trading their best players.

      Comment


      • #18
        Marz wrote: View Post
        I'm confused. The Pacers made it to the Easter Conference Finals and lost to a team with superior talent, three future hall of famers (four if we consider Bosh), and a shit ton of veteran players that know how to get things done. I'd say what the Pacers have done is pretty damn impressive.

        R: Totally agree with this.

        The vibe seems to be that if the Pacers hadn't swapped Scola for Hansbrough, hadn't traded Granger for Turner, or hadn't signed Bynum, then Hansbrough would continue to post his incredible PER, Granger would have provided tonnes of veteran leadership to push to game 7 or beyond, and Hibbert wouldn't have turned into a shell of his former self.

        Nailed it on the first part, but I'm not saying they would have beaten the Heat, I'm saying they were a better team before the moves were made.

        This is simply inconclusive. The Pacers HAD to improve, and they tried, but still came up short. Why is this bad? The Stockton-Malone era consistently failed, too, and they had a more "consistent identity". I'll take a Stockton-Malone era in Toronto any day of the week.

        I'm not saying the intention was bad, I'm saying the result was. They did acquired more talent, but the newcomers didn't fit in the Pacers' culture, and the moves ultimately worsen the older players who had to adjust their playing styles.


        If the right package for Amir or DeRozan comes along, you do it. The same applies to any player. We do not have an identity yet. We have one over-achieving season. And if we keep this core intact, we will not have enough talent to beat the Heat in a seven game series, no matter how you slice it.

        This is where i respectfully disagree. We do have an identity. We are going into the 4th and 5th years of Casey and pounding the rock, hard-nose defense and blue collar approach makes the Raptors what they are. I'm not sure how we over-achieved. Just look at the teams behind us in the playoff. Chicago DID overachieve. The Wizards won't be as good next season with Ariza not being in a contract year and they might loose Gortat as well. Their bench was freaking Al Harrington, Andre Miller, Drew Gooden (who are all pretty close to being washed up), Webster and to a lesser extent Booker. Hornets are a terrible offensive team with less upcoming talent than the Raps. Hawks, lol. The Nets aren't getting younger.

        Where you see over-achieving, I see taking care of business.

        Is there a single team in the East who has the talent to beat the Heat in a 7 game series? Who is close to do so?
        Replied in bold.

        Also, even if the Raptors and the Pacers split the season series 2 game a piece, Raptors still had a +5 points against them.
        Last edited by OptimalOptimist; Tue Jun 3rd, 2014, 10:59 AM.
        Myself (March 2014):
        The raptors are a tremendous young team and will win a championship in the following five years.

        Comment


        • #19
          Learning from the Pacers Mistakes
          Keep Demar out of the stripclubs
          Have Jonas get more than 2 rebounds in a game
          Tell T. Ross that blowing in people's faces or punching them are not good defensive tactics
          Don't let Lowry end up on an episode of Catfish

          Comment


          • #20
            OptimalOptimist wrote: View Post
            I won't write about the Andrew Bynum move because it was just terrible. Even if it was just to prevent the Heat from signing him, it showed one thing to the players: lack of trust of them defeating the Heat with their current roster. From that signing on (sorry no stats there) Roy Hibbert began to be horrible, trying to do too much on offense and not being the shell of himself defensively.
            Hibbert was terrible for all of January. Bynum was signed at the start of February. If anything, the Bynum signing was Larry Bird reacting to Hibbert's struggles that started long before. Did Hibbert perceive it as a slap in the face? He probably did. But he was melting down anyway. Hibbert needs to end the sensitive hipster routine and man up.

            I think it's very hard to blame Larry Bird for growing tired with the Pacers' lack of mental toughness this year, and Hibbert has been exhibit A of that problem for many years now.

            Comment


            • #21
              BobLoblaw wrote: View Post
              Hibbert was terrible for all of January. Bynum was signed at the start of February. If anything, the Bynum signing was Larry Bird reacting to Hibbert's struggles that started long before. Did Hibbert perceive it as a slap in the face? He probably did. But he was melting down anyway. Hibbert needs to end the sensitive hipster routine and man up.

              I think it's very hard to blame Larry Bird for growing tired with the Pacers' lack of mental toughness this year, and Hibbert has been exhibit A of that problem for many years now.
              Seriously.

              Comment


              • #22
                OptimalOptimist wrote: View Post
                Replied in bold.

                Also, even if the Raptors and the Pacers split the season series 2 game a piece, Raptors still had a +5 points against them.
                I feel like an identity takes more than one season to develop. You suggest that the identity is set because Casey has been here 3 years, but I disagree. I feel like this was the first year where he had "free reign" to really implement his system. When he says things like "I have to go with Andrea come hell or high water," I get the feeling that's not the Casey we saw this year. In addition, his system really didn't begin to flourish until after Rudy Gay was traded and he was given depth.

                I agree that continuity/stability is important. I am most certainly not advocating we go into BC-mode and start making wholesale changes every season (or half-season). What I am saying, though, is if a deal that makes sense comes around for one of our players, you don't discount it due to continuity/stability, or even identity. I'm sure there are several examples of players who learned to play in a different system, or a team with a very different identity. Your identity should not deter which players you collect. Rather it should change the players you have to fit the system, regardless of where they came from*.

                * There are the obvious exceptions, like the JR Smith's and Stephen Jackson's of the NBA. But I feel like this holds true for most NBA role players and fringe stars.

                Comment


                • #23
                  Marz wrote: View Post
                  * There are the obvious exceptions, like the JR Smith's and Stephen Jackson's of the NBA. But I feel like this holds true for most NBA role players and fringe stars.
                  No exceptions!

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                  • #24
                    special1 wrote: View Post
                    If you break up the core you will not be able to beat the Heat in a seven game series either! Continuity/Talent/Stability.....the BC era is gone my friend. The whole point of the OP's post was to show how trading the heart/soul/players of your team can destroy team chemistry.

                    What's with the infatuation with trading our best players? I rarely hear other fans around the league so enthusiastic about trading their best players.
                    The other side of the coin is that team chemistry should only become a priority once the overall talent level is sufficient to actually be truly competitive. Nobody is denying the importance of team chemistry or the need to avoid red-flag type players.

                    The posters that seem to be opposed to the premise of the OP aren't arguing against the importance of chemistry, but rather against the apparent prioritizing of team chemistry ahead of actual talent acquisition/development.

                    The bottom line is that the Raptors aren't a top-tier team yet, so worrying about the intangibles shouldn't [yet] even enter the equation, when it comes to MU's team-building strategy.

                    Comment


                    • #25
                      I don't think anyone could argue that chemistry doesn't matter. But I don't think we should get carried away after three quarters of a good season and a decent playoff debut (considering the relative inexperience of the roster) and say that big moves should be ruled out just for the sake of continuity.

                      If you think a move can increase the potential ceiling of the Raptors roster, than Masai should still be willing to pull the trigger. Not every new player acquired is going to automatically turn the locker room on it's head. Plenty of players can sustain or even improve team chemistry. The disruption in Indiana could easily have been due to the specific personalities brought in (Turner and Bynum, two notorious knuckleheads) rather than the change itself.

                      Your line of thinking would have prevented the Spurs from trading George Hill for Kawhi Leonard by the way.

                      Comment


                      • #26
                        CalgaryRapsFan wrote: View Post
                        The other side of the coin is that team chemistry should only become a priority once the overall talent level is sufficient to actually be truly competitive. Nobody is denying the importance of team chemistry or the need to avoid red-flag type players.

                        The posters that seem to be opposed to the premise of the OP aren't arguing against the importance of chemistry, but rather against the apparent prioritizing of team chemistry ahead of actual talent acquisition/development.

                        The bottom line is that the Raptors aren't a top-tier team yet, so worrying about the intangibles shouldn't [yet] even enter the equation, when it comes to MU's team-building strategy.
                        I would argue that team chemistry is likely the biggest factor in making a top-tier team. There have been MANY talented teams over the years that just never seemed to be able to put it together. IMO, if you want to be a consistent top tier team (like the spurs have shown), chemistry should be a priority. Yes, they had Duncan......but with not ONE pick under #15 in the last 16 years.......and still being the top 2 teams in the entire league.....is talent really more important than fit/chemistry?

                        Look at Rudy Gay....he's a pretty talented player (arguably the most talented on our team last year) BUT we sucked with him here and the team improved when we traded him for better team chemistry. I don't recall posters talking about how talented Salmons, 2Pat, Vasquez and Hayes were when they first came..... Matter of fact, many (like yourself) viewed it as a tank move. We went on to win 48 games and set a franchise record for wins.

                        There are many talented players in the NBA. Team building strategies should always prioritize chemistry/fit/style as how else would you ensure that you have the right players for your team?

                        Comment


                        • #27
                          Marz wrote: View Post
                          I feel like an identity takes more than one season to develop. You suggest that the identity is set because Casey has been here 3 years, but I disagree. I feel like this was the first year where he had "free reign" to really implement his system. When he says things like "I have to go with Andrea come hell or high water," I get the feeling that's not the Casey we saw this year. In addition, his system really didn't begin to flourish until after Rudy Gay was traded and he was given depth.

                          I would argue that depth is relative to a team culture. Turner isn't a rotation player in Indy because he doesn't fit, but would be one on another team where he can play more freely.

                          I agree that continuity/stability is important. I am most certainly not advocating we go into BC-mode and start making wholesale changes every season (or half-season). What I am saying, though, is if a deal that makes sense comes around for one of our players, you don't discount it due to continuity/stability, or even identity. I'm sure there are several examples of players who learned to play in a different system, or a team with a very different identity. Your identity should not deter which players you collect. Rather it should change the players you have to fit the system, regardless of where they came from*.

                          I partially agree with the bold, however the reality doesn't seems as clear cut as that when you see what the Pacers did. I honestly think certain players are due to fail or to succeed depending their environment. See as Augustin looked like a D-League player in Toronto and looks so much better in Chicago. See as Patterson didn't look like a NBA player in Sacramento but looked like a legitimate 6th man in Toronto, same could be said about Rudy, etc. You can definitely turn talent to crap and vice-versa

                          * There are the obvious exceptions, like the JR Smith's and Stephen Jackson's of the NBA. But I feel like this holds true for most NBA role players and fringe stars.
                          I don't think you need to draft/sign/trade for a guy that IMMEDIATELY reflects your culture, but you no need to take a player that could become an asset in the team system. This is why I'd much rather see a draft of guy like Payne, Grant over Anderson. I don't want to see a Nick Young type of player in this group.

                          If a player doesn't mesh well, it not only hurts his own play, but the team as well.

                          CalgaryRapsFan wrote: View Post
                          The other side of the coin is that team chemistry should only become a priority once the overall talent level is sufficient to actually be truly competitive. Nobody is denying the importance of team chemistry or the need to avoid red-flag type players.

                          The posters that seem to be opposed to the premise of the OP aren't arguing against the importance of chemistry, but rather against the apparent prioritizing of team chemistry ahead of actual talent acquisition/development.

                          The bottom line is that the Raptors aren't a top-tier team yet, so worrying about the intangibles shouldn't [yet] even enter the equation, when it comes to MU's team-building strategy.
                          I don't think you can dissociate talent and chemistry/culture/environment, etc. as talent can rot in a system or flourish in another.

                          And may be the Raptors aren't a top tier team in the NBA, but in the Eastern conference, they definitely are. The Heat are the only team in the conference which is clearly better.
                          Myself (March 2014):
                          The raptors are a tremendous young team and will win a championship in the following five years.

                          Comment


                          • #28
                            Fully wrote: View Post
                            Your line of thinking would have prevented the Spurs from trading George Hill for Kawhi Leonard by the way.
                            Not necessarily. George Hill wasn't the identity figure that held the Spurs together like DD and AJ hold the Raptors together. They figured Kawhi would fit within the culture as a smart versatile player and traded a strength for a need.
                            Myself (March 2014):
                            The raptors are a tremendous young team and will win a championship in the following five years.

                            Comment


                            • #29
                              special1 wrote: View Post
                              I would argue that team chemistry is likely the biggest factor in making a top-tier team. There have been MANY talented teams over the years that just never seemed to be able to put it together. IMO, if you want to be a consistent top tier team (like the spurs have shown), chemistry should be a priority. Yes, they had Duncan......but with not ONE pick under #15 in the last 16 years.......and still being the top 2 teams in the entire league.....is talent really more important than fit/chemistry?

                              Look at Rudy Gay....he's a pretty talented player (arguably the most talented on our team last year) BUT we sucked with him here and the team improved when we traded him for better team chemistry. I don't recall posters talking about how talented Salmons, 2Pat, Vasquez and Hayes were when they first came..... Matter of fact, many (like yourself) viewed it as a tank move. We went on to win 48 games and set a franchise record for wins.

                              There are many talented players in the NBA. Team building strategies should always prioritize chemistry/fit/style as how else would you ensure that you have the right players for your team?
                              I completely agree with the bold and even stated that in the post you responded to. However, the idea that chemistry takes precedent over talent (of which fit is definitely a component of), is laughable to me.

                              I was simply saying that for a team that isn't good enough to be considered a true contender, talent acquisition and development should the be the top priority; doing so is not mutually exclusive to ensuring the team has good chemistry/fit/balance/style/whatever. My opinion is basically that I could care less how good the Raptors' chemistry is, if their ceiling is a first or second round playoff exit.

                              Speaking of chemistry and continuity, several new players will be added to last year's roster even if no major trades are made (ie: at least one draft pick, Salmons/Hansbrough/Stone/Buycks likely to be replaced), with even more turnover inevitable the following offseason (ie: Fields & Hayes are expiring, while Novak only has 2 years left). The roster is changing, so chemistry will need to be rebuilt anyway. Therefore, I would hope that MU will make any move he deems necessary to make this team better, be it for next season or future seasons. I also trust him to build the team the 'right' way, which is really what this thread is all about.
                              Last edited by CalgaryRapsFan; Tue Jun 3rd, 2014, 03:46 PM.

                              Comment


                              • #30
                                OptimalOptimist wrote: View Post
                                Not necessarily. George Hill wasn't the identity figure that held the Spurs together like DD and AJ hold the Raptors together. They figured Kawhi would fit within the culture as a smart versatile player and traded a strength for a need.
                                I think we have different definitions of "holding the Raptors together". Two high character, hard working players no question, but prior to the last 60 games of this season, all they had really done in Toronto is lost with a good attitude. There's also plenty of people who give Lowry the credit for turning around the team's culture this season, and ironically enough he was a player who had a bad reputation based on his attitude for most of his career up until then. I think that's further proof that every player, every team, and every situation is different, which was my original point. Just because the Pacers seemingly suffered from a few moving parts on their roster, doesn't mean that any other team who does the same thing is doomed to the same fate.

                                Of course chemistry matters. Mega rosters on paper (last year's Lakers) have been brutal because of a lack of it. Mega rosters on paper (Miami Heat) have been even greater than the sum of their parts because they've found it. Hundreds and hundreds of other teams fall somewhere in the middle based on chemistry. I'm not suggesting Masai says "screw chemistry!" and goes out to trade DD for the most talented knucklehead he can find. I'm saying that you don't rule out a large change or two based on a good run during the last three quarters of the season in a watered down East because you're afraid to rock the boat a bit.
                                Last edited by Fully; Fri Jun 6th, 2014, 10:09 PM.

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