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Old 07-05-2011, 03:01 AM   #49 (permalink)
Bill Haverchuck
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Originally Posted by DrFunk3385 View Post
There was something written once about how GMs often overcomplicated the draft - this whole smarter than thou thing - they're going to swing for the fences and take, what they think, is the home run draft pick - and show everyone how smart and ballsy they are...meanwhile 9 times out of 10, if they just took the safe pick, they'd have a winning team of good players.
Often scouts and GMs can't even agree as to who is the "safe" pick. One man's safe pick is another man's gamble. It's true that there have been some dumb selections at lottery picks, but more often there is genuine disagreement at to who should go where, because drafting can be difficult at times.

Safe can be defined as "ready to play minutes immediately" or "the consensus" pick (and probably a couple of other ways), so I think the "safe pick" may actually have been made.

Other teams wanted to trade up to get Val. And if his buyout had not been a question mark, some thought he could go in the top 3 or 4. In that regard, he is, arguably, the safe pick. It's not the GM trying to be ballsy and seem smart. It's a pick based on some tangible evidence and a projection of progress that numerous other scouts also identified.

That's why I find your post kind of ironic. Val could be viewed as the "safe" pick. He destroys the competition when he plays people his own age. One could argue it would be a lame attempt to look ballsy and seem "smart" if you passed up a player like that, for Kemba or Knight.

I do think Colangelo showed balls, but for a different reason: he made the consensus pick, which has a greater chance of benefiting the franchise in a signifcant way, despite the fact that his job is on the line and he could get fired before he ever gets to see Val make his significant contribution.

By the way, it should be noted - this was the same logic that made Bargnani the number 1 overall pick in the draft - over Aldridge, etc.
Bargnani was not viewed as a consensus pick for the #1 spot. That was debatable amongst scouts. Many other teams did not have Bosh already (jump shooting PF), and thus probably would have chosen Aldridge. Regardless of the fact that I sometimes defend the Bargnani selection (it could have been worse), I recognize that Bargnani was not the clear cut BPA choice.

However, that is MUCH different logic than the selection of Val. The vast majority of scouts had Val rated higher than Walker and Knight. It's a different situation. It's closer to the logic used to pick Ed Davis. Due to a wild card variable (missed playing time in Ed's case - buyout in Val's case), both players slipped further than expected and were scooped up.

Val's situation is also different than Arujao, in that regard. Nobody had Arujao going that high. It wasn't surprising when haffa failed to live up to 8th pick. But Val, like Ed, is believed by many to be a legit talent.

The players were excited to get Knight or Walker. Excited because they play against NBA players and they know what it takes.
Young players don't have much credibility with evaluating talent. They haven't even seen themselves develop to their fullest yet, so they are hardly in a good position to judge others based on future potential. What vets can really play? I bet they know a fair amount about that.

Walker/Knight and DeRozan could have been a great back court.
Maybe. Or maybe it would be no better than Bayless and Derozan, which would mean the pick is a waste if used on either of those guards.

I'm sorry to point out of the obvious, but count the number of successful white euro centres with your fingers... how many hands does it take? how many were true FRANCHISE players? Sabonis, Divac were great... franchise players? Not sure. Doesn't mean Val won't be excellent...
This comment gets a thumbs down for several reasons.

1 - Franchise players are rare in general. No scouts have projected Kemba or Knight to be franchise players. The goal posts are in the wrong spot.

2 - The game has changed. In the past 10-12 years, since euros have been coming over in significant numbers, there have been few really good centers drafted at all. Forget euros. No geographic region is producing multipe franchise centers. That's why PF types like Gasol, Duncan and Amar'e sometimes get placed at the center position on the All-NBA teams.

What all-nba team centers (real centers) have been drafted in the past 12 years? Dwight? Bogut? Yao? Horford? Look at that, two of them are foreign! And if you expand the list to just quality centers capable of starting, you see that a fair number of them a foreign dudes. GMs should be looking everywhere for talent. North America, Asia, Australia, Africa, South America and, yes, Europe. Lots of good centers are foreign.

BTW, if we look at bigs in general, there have been some very good euro big men.

Last edited by Bill Haverchuck; 07-05-2011 at 03:14 AM.
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