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@  slick shoes : (29 August 2016 - 11:42 AM) At some point they've got to start trading SOME of these picks for veteran players...
@  thejohnnygold : (26 August 2016 - 10:03 PM) Call me crazy, but I'd rather have Kendall Marshall than 2 2nd rounders.
@  slick shoes : (26 August 2016 - 08:30 PM) the 76's trade for another center? im assuming they were really after the two 2nd rounders...
@  thejohnnygold : (07 August 2016 - 07:16 PM) Nope, but there is some raw talent to work with there. He is years away...
@  majik19 : (06 August 2016 - 11:53 PM) well it doesn't look like Zhou Qi is NBA-ready
@  thejohnnygold : (25 July 2016 - 04:26 PM) I think I am going to like Bobby Brown...that is within the confines of our current strategy which is score, score, SCORE!
@  slick shoes : (22 July 2016 - 08:02 PM) The "super team" Knicks? lol
@  thejohnnygold : (22 July 2016 - 06:05 PM) On Josh Smith...my guess is the Knicks eventually sign him.
@  slick shoes : (21 July 2016 - 04:29 PM) The Jet has been released. Josh Smith will likely play for another team next season. Maybe he teams up with Dwight in ATL?
@  slick shoes : (21 July 2016 - 12:17 PM) Harden is now sending hitmen after Rockets legends' sons for badmouthing him on social media *facepalm*
@  slick shoes : (18 July 2016 - 02:22 PM) If you haven't seen the 30 for 30 "The Guru of Go", I recommend it before the upcoming season.
@  Shy Silver : (14 July 2016 - 07:20 PM) Yea I know, but there were reports both sides were willing to have a reunion before Chicago signed him. So at the time, Canaan was an option, and a better one than Pablo at that. We should've capitalized on that one, especially with how well he fits the system for obvious reasons + age on his side.
@  thejohnnygold : (14 July 2016 - 03:43 PM) Canaan signed with Chicago already
@  Shy Silver : (14 July 2016 - 03:24 PM) Don't love the Prigioni move. Thought for sure we had better options like bringing Canaan back or getting someone like Shane Larkin
@  DenverRocket : (14 July 2016 - 04:36 AM) Apparently signed Prigioni to a one-year contract (veteran minimum) with a team option for a second season.
@  slick shoes : (13 July 2016 - 08:38 PM) Chris Finch is out as an assistant. Bummer.
@  slick shoes : (11 July 2016 - 03:32 PM) Shame to lose Glove Jr. before the close of Summer League. Would have liked to see him get some court time.
@  Mario Peña : (09 July 2016 - 11:21 PM) I'm going to tentatively say I'm glad this is happening. I believe James is a top 5 player with all the tools to have a great year but this team needs an all star/glue guy/leader type and then maybe the magic can happen.
@  thejohnnygold : (09 July 2016 - 09:53 PM) If he plays defense I'll be fine
@  DenverRocket : (09 July 2016 - 07:51 PM) Bad news for the anti-Harden brigade, he's just signed a 4yr extension ($118m)

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Offseason Wish List


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#1 majik19

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    Posted 29 April 2016 - 06:26 PM

    Might as well get this thread started now... Most others have started into this on multiple topics, and I'm sure the Red94 crew will weigh in at some point.

     

    Many of you are probably burned out right now, given how the season ended (and really how the whole season was!), but we can at least get it started.

     

    Personally, I'm up for a full rebuild around Harden and Capela, with D-mo sticking around if his price isn't exorbitant. 

     

    I'd rather keep the "trade Harden" discussions out of this thread, because I think the chances of that are extremely low and personally I'd rather keep him. Maybe he doesn't have a championship demeanor, maybe he can't lead, maybe he dogs it on defense and complains too much on offense, but his (offensive) numbers were still pretty awesome this year, despite a lack of help.

     

    So, wish list:

    1) Kevin Durant (who is really items 1-5 on this list) - biggest concern would be defense. How the hell do you guard a team with two scoring wings/guards when you have Harden at the 2 and Durant at the 3? Curry & Thompson, Lillard and McCollum, Leonard and Parker, etc. You could slide Durant to 4 in smaller lineups, but you don't want him body-ing up with 4s too often...

     

    2) A competent coach who can get Harden to "buy-in." Whether this is JVG or Kevin Ollie or someone in that vein, that is clearly the most important thing, more important than an offensive or defensive-minded coach. 

     

    3) A wing who can defend and hit 3s consistently (whether we get Durant or not). It would be really nice if he could actually dribble a little too. Could Dekker play this role at least part-time next year?

     

    4) A healthy, modestly priced Motiejunas. If not D-Mo, then a 4 who can shoot (maybe not even to the 3 point line, but at least pull guys away from the hoop), play competent team defense, and rebound. Al Horford would be the top of the list on this one for me. Ryan Anderson is a nice fit offensively, poor fit defensively. 

     

    5) A PG upgrade over Beverley. Not sure if one exists who can co-exist with Harden, but maybe if we can achieve #2 above then this one becomes more viable. 

     

    6) As with every year, hope the young players get better. Capela needs to learn awareness and how to box out better. Dekker needs to get a feel for the NBA game. Harrell needs to develop some skill other than hustle (don't get me wrong - the hustle is badly needed on this team). KJ gets a jump shot. Goudelock can do enough on defense to earn minutes. Michael Beasley learns the definition of "pass."  

     

    What does everyone else think?

     

     


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    #2 bboley24

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      Posted 29 April 2016 - 09:43 PM

      Beverly, Harden, Beasley, DMO and Capela stay.  EVERYONE ELSE LEAVE NOW.

      That's a starting lineup right there.  Beverley guard everyone up top, Capela guard everyone downlow.  

      These trade Harden guys must not have lived through the scola days.  It is VERY difficult to obtain a top 10 player let alone a top 5 player in this league.  You head into lulls that become a 3-5 year span of just dull basketball.  Inspired, but dull. 

      As for free agents and trades, I have no freaking clue.  The team will have a completely different identity next year depending on the coach.  The players will fill in accordingly. 

      Daryl Morey needs to figure out chemistry before plugging in the numbers.  He needs a leader.  Shane Battier style.  Get us a serviceable vet that can start and play at least 30 minutes a game.


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      #3 clydesmoustache

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        Posted 30 April 2016 - 03:35 AM

        It is a real difficult question. Where don't we need improvement?

         

        PG - Injury prone, can't create his own shot, has trouble distributing the ball into the post, is known for his D but has dropped off. Can hit the 3 at an average clip and brings intensity

         

        SG - The star of the team and a top 10 (probably top 5) player. Probably around 50% of fans want him gone as he doesn't hustle and is the world's worst defender.

         

        SF - Can't dribble, can't pass, sometimes can't catch, can hit the 3 at an average clip has not hustled for an entire season. D has dropped off remarkably

         

        PF - Has been the weakness of the team since Charles Barkley

         

        C - Who knows what's going on here?

         

        The bench - One of the worst performing in the league.

         

        Where do you start?


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        #4 thejohnnygold

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        Posted 30 April 2016 - 03:11 PM

        Beverly, Harden, Beasley, DMO and Capela stay.  EVERYONE ELSE LEAVE NOW.

        That's a starting lineup right there.  Beverley guard everyone up top, Capela guard everyone downlow.  

        These trade Harden guys must not have lived through the scola days.  It is VERY difficult to obtain a top 10 player let alone a top 5 player in this league.  You head into lulls that become a 3-5 year span of just dull basketball.  Inspired, but dull. 

        As for free agents and trades, I have no freaking clue.  The team will have a completely different identity next year depending on the coach.  The players will fill in accordingly. 

        Daryl Morey needs to figure out chemistry before plugging in the numbers.  He needs a leader.  Shane Battier style.  Get us a serviceable vet that can start and play at least 30 minutes a game.

         

        :lol: I've been a fan since '85.  I think it is more a matter of some people derive their pleasure from the game differently than others.

         

        I've said it recently, but I'll say it again.  There are only a handful of actual, championship-bearing stars in this league.  James Harden, in his current state, is not one of them.  So, what is it we are clinging to so tightly?  The chance that other, better players get hurt and he can feel vindicated for being a bum after lucking into a title?  Like I said, we all live vicariously through the team and we all do it differently.

         

        Majik19 said no trade Harden talk (which I can agree with)...moving on.

         

        Morey has his work cut out because what this team truly needs is not available nor attainable...perhaps.

         

        I think this team needs Chris Paul.  Since we're not getting him I think trying to find a poor man's Chris Paul is the next step.  Unfortunately, that player doesn't exist.  It could have been Deron Williams if injuries didn't ruin him.  Russell Westbrook isn't going anywhere.

         

        Rajon Rondo.  I just spent 5 minutes running through every other PG alternative in my head and Rondo is the only player that can legitimately walk into our gym and tell James he needs to give up the ball.

         

        The good news is he's available.  The bad news is it's a risky move.  More good news: he won't make things worse than they already are.

         

        I think that would be best for the team for a few reasons.  First, I really want Harden to play off the ball a lot more.  It will maximize his effectiveness while minimizing his turnover problem.  It will also help keep other guys more involved and engaged on the court.

         

        Second, Rondo brings an intensity that even Beverley will have trouble matching.  This team needs more toughness.  Lots more.

         

        Third, in our read-and-react offense we need a player like Rondo who can actually read and react  :o   Give him the reins and let him run this offense.  I think it would be awesome and would mitigate all the coach-clashing he has had in his past.  Morey needs to roll the dice on this one.

         

        Bonus: this moves Beverley back to the bench where he excelled while leaving us a starting caliber PG in case of injury.  This move puts our PG position in as good of shape as it can be all things considered--and we didn't have to trade anything to get there.

         

        Next is SF.  I do not think Durant is coming to Houston.  I believe he is going to enjoy a Summer of wining and dining and wooing from as many teams as he wants.  After that, he is going to re-sign with OKC for a two-year deal with a player option on the 2nd year--which he knew he was going to do all along.

         

        I think the only team with a legit shot at signing him is Miami; although, the loss of Bosh is huge and hurts those chances.  With Bosh's salary off the books Miami can re-sign Whiteside and give Durant a max while Wade takes the home-town discount.  Dragic, Wade, Durant, McRoberts (who is kind of ideal  in this situation), and Whiteside is a title contender.  Add in Winslow, and whatever guys they sign to make a championship run.

         

        Once that's all done, Pat Riley will wake up and look at himself smugly in the mirror like Patrick Bateman, give himself a wink and point at himself.  

         

        6cdf9ab2e85c552f9621d680baa9e09e.jpg

         

        Yeah, just like that.  OK, back on topic.  We're not getting Durant so what do we do?  I am of the opinion that Ariza still has a couple good years left in him and that he was mailing it in this season.  He's got two years left on a nice contract.  However, if we were to upgrade here it would be either Bazemore or Harrison Barnes for offense or Matt Barnes for defense.  I'm good with any of these options.

         

        I know a lot of fans here aren't high on H. Barnes and his quest for a max deal.  I think he's an easy 20 ppg scorer and will fill out the stat sheet nicely while being a legit #2 next to Harden.  He can play 3 positions (on both ends of the floor), shoots a good % from deep and has Harden-potential written all over him.

         

        For all this talk about how difficult it is to get a star I think you have to roll the dice on Barnes and give him the max deal.  It won't be a Durant-level super max.  It will likely fall around $21M according to these guys.  All told, I can live with that gamble.

         

        Let's look at PF.  I think Blake Griffin is 100% available (no matter what LAC might say).  The Clips could use a 3&D wing.  We can bundle Ariza, sign+trade D-Mo, and maybe throw in Harrell (which I'm not a fan of, but may be necessary to get the deal done) for Griffin.

         

        Sign a competent wing player and we've got something.  I still think that makes us 4th-5th best in the West, but for most of you that is preferable.  :P

         

        I know lots of folks like Horford, but I'm not sold he has any interest in coming here.  Boston is likely going to kick the tires.  Portland, Chicago, Miami...he will have no shortage of suitors including his own team, Atlanta.  Why would he want to come here at this stage of his career with the giant question mark we currently have hanging over our heads?  If I were him I'd be looking at Boston, Miami, Atlanta, and Indiana first.

         

        There's not much at Center available.  Some nice role players available, but no real difference makers.  (I'm assuming Drummond is staying in Detroit and Whiteside in Miami).

         

        That's about it.  From there, we've got trades, trades, and more trades we could make.  Morey is going to be up to his eyeballs in trade scenarios.

         

        More than anything, I really want us to retain and develop our young guys.  I really like what we've got going there.

         

        Sorry for the super long post (what else is new?!?  :lol: )  In short, get Rondo, sign H. Barnes, develop youth.  Oh, and trade Brewer.


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        #5 Rahat Huq

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          Posted 01 May 2016 - 12:11 AM

          JG: You've been a fan over 10 years longer than I have.  I started following the team in 1994, when post-Islam Hakeem had already manifested.  Would you have called Hakeem a championship bearing star back in, say 1991?


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          #6 thejohnnygold

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          Posted 01 May 2016 - 05:07 AM

          JG: You've been a fan over 10 years longer than I have.  I started following the team in 1994, when post-Islam Hakeem had already manifested.  Would you have called Hakeem a championship bearing star back in, say 1991?

           

          First, let's acknowledge that you're lawyer-ing me a little here. :P  There is no way to answer this question.  It's a set up to the supposition that Harden can eventually win a title the way Hakeem did later in his career.

           

          Setting aside that 15 year old me knew far less in every imaginable way than 39 year old me, it's still impossible to say.  So, how to respond...?

           

          I can say I don't ever recall anyone (even before the championships) chiding Houston about selecting Hakeem ahead of Jordan in the draft.  He was clearly a dominant NBA player from day 1.  He averaged 20 & 12 as a rookie and his offensive numbers only dipped in '91 & '92 when he was injured, missing games, playing fewer minutes, and taking fewer shots.  He was still a defensive force.

           

          Now, I think there was some rumbling after we got swept by the Lakers in '91, but that wasn't Hakeem's fault.  After that, it was a coaching change that ultimately got this team on track.  (which is where we currently find ourselves, again).

           

          My point is there was nothing one could point at (that I was a aware of) to say he wasn't capable of winning a title.  Considering he led his team to the Finals in '86 and took a legendary Boston team to 6 games while posting some monster stat lines I'd say the question was answered well before 1991.

           

          I understand that we're supposed to be relating this to Harden.  To me, it doesn't matter if James ever wins a title the same way it never mattered to me if Hakeem won a title.  He was our guy.  He was a man you could feel good about rooting for.  He worked his butt off and, more or less, showed up ready to play on whatever stage he played on.  He didn't make excuses.  Win or lose, he battled.  He led by example.  What more can a fan base really ask for from a man?

           

          Can anyone say those things about James Harden?  I don't look at James and think, "He has to win a championship to justify his existence".  No.  I think, "What a waste."  I've been around long enough to know the difference between reasons and excuses.  Will James ever get it?  Nobody knows--not even him.

           

          The reason I want him gone is not about championship rings. It's about enjoying watching my favorite team again.  If he can get it together I will gladly root for the man, but at this point I don't see it happening.


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          #7 redfaithful

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          Posted 01 May 2016 - 08:50 AM

          2) A competent coach who can get Harden to "buy-in." Whether this is JVG or Kevin Ollie or someone in that vein, that is clearly the most important thing, more important than an offensive or defensive-minded coach. 

           

          This. IMO the biggest mistake of Morey's tenure was McHale - this team never needed a "players coach", it needed and certainly needs now a basketball brain that can set offensive and defensive strategies, teach the team how to follow and hold players accountable. If Harden cannot "buy-in", then JG's view of him is correct, for me it seems like he's been trying to be the hero saving a bad system, so he will embrace a better coach that will provide him with easier baskets and more organized defense.


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          #8 bboley24

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            Posted 01 May 2016 - 02:52 PM

            Harden = Allen Iverson

            SO incredibly talented that you'll get to the finals maybe one time in their prime due to incredible output as opposed to championship caliber strategy.


            Don't care.  Getting another star is nearly impossible.

            None the less, why do you think that Pat Beverly defense has dropped off? The man has more defensive talent than any other pg in the league.  He plays with fire and passion.  He's a good guy and won't cause issues off of the court.

            Is Jeff Teague someone that we should be looking at?


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            #9 thejohnnygold

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            Posted 01 May 2016 - 05:13 PM

            Harden = Allen Iverson

            SO incredibly talented that you'll get to the finals maybe one time in their prime due to incredible output as opposed to championship caliber strategy.


            Don't care.  Getting another star is nearly impossible.

            None the less, why do you think that Pat Beverly defense has dropped off? The man has more defensive talent than any other pg in the league.  He plays with fire and passion.  He's a good guy and won't cause issues off of the court.

            Is Jeff Teague someone that we should be looking at?

             

            This is what I'm getting at.  It's simply not true, while also being completely true.

             

            It is true that an actual star that can drag a team to the finals by himself is very hard to come by.  The problem is determining where that cut-off point is.

             

            Is Kyle Lowry a star?  Paul George?  DeMarcus Cousins?  Anthony Davis?  Gordon Hayward?  Eric Bledsoe?  Brook Lopez?  Damian Lillard?  Marc Gasol?  Blake Griffin?  Heck, even Chris Paul?  Jimmy Butler?  Millsap?  Kemba Walker?

             

            Those guys are all the "stars" of their respective teams.  Zero titles.  Over the next 10-15 years the odds are that number only increases by 1 or 2.  Now, who can predict which of these guys gets it done?  Which of these guys would you trade Harden for--straight up?  I would definitely trade him for 5...maybe even 7 of those guys.  So, where do we really stand with Harden as our "star"?

             

            Answer: pretty much in the same place as half of the league.  So, to say a star is rare is to miss the point.

             

            Steph Curry is rare.  LeBron is rare.  Kobe is rare.  Shaq is rare.  Hakeem is rare.  Tim Duncan is rare.  Jordan is rare.

             

            Go back to 1991 (25 years) and see that those 7 players dominated championships during that span.  You've got 3 outliers: Detroit, Boston, and Dallas--all of which were able to construct super deep teams that meshed for a brief time.  What's worse is that only 4 of those 7 guys truly dominated by winning 19 of those 25 years.  4 guys dominated most of a quarter century of basketball (and 3 of them are still in the running to continue to do more).

             

            Want to go back further?  The 80's were dominated by Moses Malone, Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, and Isaiah Thomas.  That's it.  4 guys took out another entire decade.  So, that is 11 players over 35 years.

             

            Where it gets really depressing is realizing none of them did it alone--except for one guy.  Hakeem "The Dream" Olajuwon is the only "star" who won a title without anything close to another star in '93-'94.  Now, he had a good team, but even Dirk had J-Kidd, Terry, and Peja on top of Chandler, Butler, and Marion.  Detroit didn't have a "star" at all (I know this one is debatable, but from the perspective we are talking about it is true).

             

            So, tell me all about stars.  Look at that list and tell me James Harden is more likely to get there than any other team's "star".  Worse, he's supposed to do this alone somehow.  Until he commits to being a 2-way player it's not even close.

             

            Which leads us back on topic.  What this team needs is a complete and total change in philosophy, culture, and values.  This isn't a track meet where you just throw athletes out there and see who is best.  There is strategy and teams can actively interfere with your ability to succeed--unlike track or golf--it's called defense.

             

            Go back and look at those NBA champions.  They all had the ability to lock down on defense--and did so often.  Once again, tell me how clinging to our star is a good idea if winning a title is the goal.

             

            (Sorry, this thread has been hijacked as well.  We weren't supposed to do this here  :( )

             

            I'll try and make it relevant.  

             

            Rockets fans often talk about mediocrity and how having Harden is better than that.  I find that odd since the reality is we are a very, very mediocre team.  Worse, we have a "star" who needs a coach to hold his hand and he also needs another star who can hold him accountable.  What?  What he needs is a slap to the back of his skull and a strong admonishment.  It's too bad he doesn't have someone willing to do it.

             

            If I were Les Alexander I'd offer Kevin Garnett $10M a year to be Harden's "handler" (He'd be a coach, not a player).  His job would be to slap him up side the head every time he needed it.  That's it.  After that, we need a head coach with progressive, team-oriented ideals and a PG who can take the ball from James and keep the whole team involved.  If we can do all that we should be pretty good  :).


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            #10 bboley24

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              Posted 02 May 2016 - 01:03 AM

              Touche'.  VERY good point.  

              That's why I loved Tracy so much.  His talent alone could've gotten us somewhere if the stars would've aligned correctly.  But if it weren't Tmac, it could've been Michael Redd or Latrell Spreewell or Kevin Garnett or Gilbert Arenas.

              Stars that needed handled.  Iverson, Starbury, Payton, George Muresan... oh wait...

              Honestly, to fill seats alone he is worth every penny.  But I would like to see Harden 5 years from now.  Take a back seat roll and stick to distributing.  Lebron has done it gracefully.  He's not out to win scoring titles.  HE COULD IF HE WANTED TO.  But the man is 31 years old.  He knows what's up.  

               

              I'd love to construct a team similar to the Steve Nash Suns.  Not their "7 second" philosophy but the spread the floor, big man run game.  Capela has shown time and time again his willingness to run the floor on the break.  What we need now is a Rondo point guard and a sixth man shooooooooter off of the bench.  

               

              Im talking Reddick style.

               

              PG - Rondo/Beverly
              SG - Harden

              SF - NJ NETS Richard Jefferson type

              PF - Ryan Anderson/Michael Beasley

              C - Capela/Motie

               

              Not much defense there but man would that offense be exciting to watch.


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              #11 thejohnnygold

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              Posted 02 May 2016 - 04:50 PM

              Touche'.  VERY good point.  

              That's why I loved Tracy so much.  His talent alone could've gotten us somewhere if the stars would've aligned correctly.  But if it weren't Tmac, it could've been Michael Redd or Latrell Spreewell or Kevin Garnett or Gilbert Arenas.

              Stars that needed handled.  Iverson, Starbury, Payton, George Muresan... oh wait...

              Honestly, to fill seats alone he is worth every penny.  But I would like to see Harden 5 years from now.  Take a back seat roll and stick to distributing.  Lebron has done it gracefully.  He's not out to win scoring titles.  HE COULD IF HE WANTED TO.  But the man is 31 years old.  He knows what's up.  

               

              I'd love to construct a team similar to the Steve Nash Suns.  Not their "7 second" philosophy but the spread the floor, big man run game.  Capela has shown time and time again his willingness to run the floor on the break.  What we need now is a Rondo point guard and a sixth man shooooooooter off of the bench.  

               

              Im talking Reddick style.

               

              PG - Rondo/Beverly
              SG - Harden

              SF - NJ NETS Richard Jefferson type

              PF - Ryan Anderson/Michael Beasley

              C - Capela/Motie

               

              Not much defense there but man would that offense be exciting to watch.

               

              First, Gary Payton can play on my team any time.  I'll take 5 guys just like him.  We'd have to rename the team from "Rockets" to "The Big Nasty".   :lol:  One reason I'm bummed we lost our first rounder is I think GP's son is going to wind up being a solid defensive PG in the league.  If his offense comes around you've got yourself another Avery Bradley.  Oh well, at least we beat GS once.  That makes everything better...right?   :unsure:

               

              I agree with you on T-Mac...except that I am one of the few Rockets fans who doesn't think Yao was a great player.  Yao tried, but you can only make 7' 6" bodies move so fast.  Teams could always exploit him defensively in the playoffs.  His lone playoff series win came against a Portland team with no one who could take advantage of his slow-footed nature.

               

              McGrady is a perfect example of the dying breed in the NBA--the solo artist.  Imagine a player like him playing in SA or GS right now.  Wow.

               

              Which leads me to this recent quote from Durant talking about the importance of coaching (he's talking about Popovich)

               

               

              “No matter how many moving parts they have on the team, he always stays consistent with what he does,” Durant said after the Thunder shootaround this morning at the AT&T Center before Game 1 of the Western Conference semifinals. “Having a coach, a really good coach is probably the most important thing in this league. Because you can have all the great players you want, but if you have someone to orchestrate it, that’s what they have. They’ve got great players, but they also have a great coach to put them in positions that utilizes all their strengths as individuals and make it come together as a team.”

               

               

              Wow, if I'm Sam Presti I just got a little more nervous about retaining KD after this year.  If I'm Daryl Morey and I want to lure KD to Houston that is where it begins--the coach.  On a side note, San Antonio could pretty easily sign KD next year--all they really need to do is move Danny Green's $10M.  Parker, Leonard, Durant, Aldridge, Duncan (maybe?).   :o

               

              If anyone thinks the players don't notice the way GS and SA are playing I don't know what to tell you.  Not only are they kicking everyone's butts--they're making it look like fun for everyone and their is plenty of glory for everyone and no one player bears the burden of winning, nor losing, nor scoring, nor creating.  Nobody wants to sit at a podium every night and talk about why they weren't good enough.

               

              The Houston Rockets have got to move that direction and start doing it now.  It won't happen overnight.  I honestly believe that a huge part of Golden State's success is their team culture.  They all shoot with complete confidence--confidence that comes from knowing your guys support you and love you whether the ball goes in or not.  Confidence that comes from knowing if you're off that night it's fine because someone else will pick you up, or the guys can buckle down on defense and get it done.  From this confidence, more shots go in which breeds more confidence and more shots go in...and on and on.

               

              It's not the best payer who takes the shots--it's the open player.  They all know that if they get open (and in their systems they know they will) they will get the ball and have a full green light to pull the trigger.  Does anyone think Houston player's show that sort of confidence?  I don't.  (Only Josh Smith reminds me of that and that's just because he's Josh Smith.)

               

              Meanwhile, Steve Kerr is smart enough to let each of his players score the way they like to.  Speights?  mid-range jumpers all day long.  Livingston?  Go post up or shoot some mid-range bunnies.  Curry, just pretend you're playing H-O-R-S-E.  Klay uses his 3 pt. threat to drive past defenders.  Draymond likes everything.  Barbosa likes transition scoring.  Players get to do what they do best and reward their coaches and team mates by unselfishly playing hard on both ends.

               

              In Houston, what do we have?  If James is off or the refs swallow their whistles we're boned.  If the threes aren't falling we're boned (usually).

               

              Houston was 14-24 when Harden shot less than 10 fta's per game (he averaged 10.2/game this season).  That means we were 27-17 when he hit that mark or higher.  Well then, that's just about it isn't it?  It's a dangerous strategy putting your success in someone else's hands.  Foul calls are subjective and there is plenty of room for human error and bias  (not to mention end game whistle-swallowing--which is a real thing.  Don't let anyone tell you otherwise).  Every shot that goes through that hoop counts whether the refs like it or not.  Maybe it's not as "efficient", but at least it's all yours.

               

              Which leads me to this complaint:  What the heck are you thinking Daryl Morey?!?!!?  Where's the disconnect?  Oh, you want to score with 3's, at the rim, and free throws?  OK, sounds like a plan.  Why is it we have a roster loaded with poor free throw shooters, bad three point shooters, and guys who can't finish around the rim?

               

              Seriously, with our personnel we needed to become a grit'n'grind defensive team not an up-and-down running team.  You know how you can help conserve Harden's energy for defense?  Slow the game down!  You want to get value out of your defense-only players?  Make them play defense!  Gah!  :angry:

               

              Looking to the future, I so very, very badly hope we hang on to Montrezl.  I want him in our starting front court for next season.  He's got infectious energy that can elevate an entire team.  I also think his skills are under-valued as he is mostly known as just a hustle guy, but he can do a lot of things and shows an impressive b-ball IQ.  Given the chance, I think he could take the league by storm.  It will take a year or two to see the final product, but it will be 100% worth it.  He won't be an all-star, but he can get close.

               

              It's time to move Harden to SF.  A combination of KJ and Goudelock at the 2 gives us a nice defense/offense pairing.  Decker is still a question mark, but Morey has done pretty well with picks like this.  I'm excited to see how he looks in the pre-season.  If Capela can pack some meat on those bones he'll be solid next year.

               

              Yup, it all starts with a coach.  After that, a PG.  There is no reason to look at this like we are in win-now mode.  We are definitely not in win-now mode.  Morey built a house of straw and look how easily it was blown over.  Time to get out the bricks and start building something that will last.


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              #12 bboley24

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                Posted 02 May 2016 - 11:58 PM

                Which leads me to this complaint:  What the heck are you thinking Daryl Morey?!?!!?  Where's the disconnect?  Oh, you want to score with 3's, at the rim, and free throws?  OK, sounds like a plan.  Why is it we have a roster loaded with poor free throw shooters, bad three point shooters, and guys who can't finish around the rim?

                 


                HAHAHAHHAHA!  So true. SOOOOO true.


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                #13 majik19

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                  Posted 04 May 2016 - 03:01 PM

                  In Morey's defense, these guys aren't easy to find. Name 10 good 3-and-D small forwards. Parsons was a good fit, but his defense fell off. Ariza was a good fit, but his defense fell off. Brewer, admittedly, was a poor signing (and doesn't do any of these things well), but something about his "chaos factor" worked for us last year. Even harder - find one of these guys on the cheap. 

                   

                  I think he's hoping Dekker evolves into such a player. I think he also gambled on McDaniels becoming that guy, but abysmal shooting isn't getting him there (plus a lack of minutes). 

                   

                  He clearly could have had Kawhi Leonard (this kills me every time I think about it) and guessed wrong. 

                   

                  We've discussed the PG situation over and over again on this thread, but it's tough to find a fit with Harden, and so far Beverley's been the best one, though I agree he would be better suited off the bench.


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                  #14 slick shoes

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                  Posted 04 May 2016 - 03:06 PM

                  In Morey's defense, these guys aren't easy to find. Name 10 good 3-and-D small forwards. Parsons was a good fit, but his defense fell off. Ariza was a good fit, but his defense fell off. Brewer, admittedly, was a poor signing (and doesn't do any of these things well), but something about his "chaos factor" worked for us last year. Even harder - find one of these guys on the cheap. 

                   

                  I think he's hoping Dekker evolves into such a player. I think he also gambled on McDaniels becoming that guy, but abysmal shooting isn't getting him there (plus a lack of minutes). 

                   

                  He clearly could have had Kawhi Leonard (this kills me every time I think about it) and guessed wrong. 

                   

                  We've discussed the PG situation over and over again on this thread, but it's tough to find a fit with Harden, and so far Beverley's been the best one, though I agree he would be better suited off the bench.

                   

                  Kawhi would not be the same player under McHale. The stars just aligned on that one. Perfect player for their system/culture. 


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                  when you win two games in a row that's called a winning streak.

                  trickin' six digits on kicks and still holdin'.

                  #15 thejohnnygold

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                  Posted 04 May 2016 - 09:19 PM

                  In Morey's defense, these guys aren't easy to find. Name 10 good 3-and-D small forwards. Parsons was a good fit, but his defense fell off. Ariza was a good fit, but his defense fell off. Brewer, admittedly, was a poor signing (and doesn't do any of these things well), but something about his "chaos factor" worked for us last year. Even harder - find one of these guys on the cheap. 

                   

                  I think he's hoping Dekker evolves into such a player. I think he also gambled on McDaniels becoming that guy, but abysmal shooting isn't getting him there (plus a lack of minutes). 

                   

                  He clearly could have had Kawhi Leonard (this kills me every time I think about it) and guessed wrong. 

                   

                  We've discussed the PG situation over and over again on this thread, but it's tough to find a fit with Harden, and so far Beverley's been the best one, though I agree he would be better suited off the bench.

                   

                  I'll give it a go.

                   

                  10 good 3&D players:

                   

                  Paul George, Kawhi Leonard, DeMarre Carroll, Jae Crowder, Wes Matthews, Khris Middleton, Aaron Afflalo, Draymond Green, Andre Iguodala, Danny Green (who just had an off year), Kent Bazemore, Kidd-Gilchrist (maybe...looks like his shot is better), Jared Dudley (good team defender), Otto Porter, and Klay Thompson.

                   

                  Honorable mention: Al-Farouq Aminu, Gary Harris, Kevin Durant, Luol Deng, LeBron James, Marvin Williams (more of a stretch 4), Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (more of a SG), Kyle Korver (good team D), and Allen Crabbe.

                   

                  By my count that is 15 solid 3&D guys with 9 other guys who could be put in that group.

                   

                  Of course, I get that you are talking "role players" so let's whittle it down.

                   

                  I still get 10 solid ones after omitting George, Leonard, Middleton, Draymond Green, and Klay Thompson plus another 7 from the 2nd tier.

                   

                  I still believe people are over-reacting to Ariza's decline and not looking at the context in which it occurred.  His shots were often rushed and highly contested due to our "offensive system" (or lack thereof).  I also believe he was part of the mutiny that sabotaged this season--the guys quit.  Everyone could see it.  Properly motivated, I think Ariza can return to form for us.

                   

                  I also like Matt Barnes and PJ Tucker.  Their 3% is a tad low, but they make up for it with the rest of their game.

                   

                  As far as finding guys like this on the cheap--why would you?  It is absolutely critical to team success to have at least one of these guys on the roster.  I'd happily devote $10M a piece to have 2 of them.  Would anyone argue that having Jae Crowder and DeMarre Carroll on your roster would be better than, say, Kevin Love?  Blake Griffin?  I think there are quite a few players whose salary would be put to better use in that way.

                   

                  Heck, given the new cap rules pay them $15M a piece.  You still have room for an all-star, a near all-star, and plenty of roster filler.

                   

                  I don't care much about the Kawhi Leonard grousing.  He was the 15th pick and out of those first 15 picks, only 2 can be argued to be excusable in hindsight.  That draft was actually riddled with talent and I can only imagine the difficulty in trying to nail down which guys were going to blossom.  Klay went 11th.  Jimmy Butler 30th.  Reggie Jackson 24th.  Kemba Walker 9th.  Parsons 38th.  Isaiah Thomas 60th.

                   

                  By the way, look at Kawhi's college resume and convince me he'd win a Finals MVP...ever.  He looked like a solid 3 & D guy (if his shot came along).

                   

                  There's lots more in that draft including D-Mo, Mirotic, Cory Joseph, Fareid, Tobias Harris, Brandon Knight....Biyombo, the Morris twins, Valenciunas, Vucevic...holy cow that draft was insane looking back on it.

                   

                  I don't fault anyone (almost) for mis-firing in that draft because there was too much talent to choose from.  Heck, Golden State could have had Kawhi instead of Klay...how ridiculous is that?  Would they be better?  Could you imagine Curry, Leonard, Barnes, Iguodala, and Green all on the floor together.  Ridiculous.

                   

                  The bottom line is Slick Shoes is correct because if Kawhi came here they would have only let him shoot corner 3's and watch James Harden dribble.  Maybe he would've learned Parsons' sweet pump fake  :rolleyes:

                   

                  As for the PG fit with Harden...the first thing is to convince Harden he needs to give up the rock.  After that, it's not as difficult.  Darren Collison would be a great fit.  I think this team is doomed as long as they force (or pander to...whichever it is) James to play that role.


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                  #16 majik19

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                    Posted 05 May 2016 - 01:00 AM

                    I would consider some of your 3 and D guys a stretch, but yes, I got the point. Throughout the whole Warriors series, I was thinking "What if we had Iguodala, and they had Ariza?" Even that would have made a huge difference. 

                     

                    I've long thought Collison would be a good fit here, but I've wondered about his defense. He's a good 3 pt shooter, good on the fast break, doesn't need the ball in his hands. He's not a great distributor, but he's a good one. His defensive RPM was a horrid -2.45 last year, good for 73rd in the league... among point guards. Some of that was probably his dismal defensive team, but I'm afraid Harden and Collison playing next to each other would be another sieve. 

                     

                    As for Kawhi, don't disagree. But I remember that draft day and watching Leonard slide down the board when we badly need a SF. Then we picked Morris, and I was livid - Morris was not as good a prospect then, and not as good a player now. Also someone made the comment he wouldn't be as good here - also almost definitely true. He'd be a high level defender, but definitely not the shooter he is. 


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                    #17 Cooper

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                      Posted 05 May 2016 - 03:30 AM

                      Oladipo is coming up for an extension with the magic, wonder how committed they are to him? Some of Collisons bad d might be attributed to being in sacramento but at this point we aren't in a much better place team effort wise, still he's on a cheap contract and can do quite a bit on offense. Chalmers is coming off a pretty serious achilles injury but might be worth a look, if he can get back to form a combo of him and Bev would be decent.


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                      #18 thejohnnygold

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                      Posted 05 May 2016 - 05:10 PM

                      I would consider some of your 3 and D guys a stretch, but yes, I got the point. Throughout the whole Warriors series, I was thinking "What if we had Iguodala, and they had Ariza?" Even that would have made a huge difference. 

                       

                      I've long thought Collison would be a good fit here, but I've wondered about his defense. He's a good 3 pt shooter, good on the fast break, doesn't need the ball in his hands. He's not a great distributor, but he's a good one. His defensive RPM was a horrid -2.45 last year, good for 73rd in the league... among point guards. Some of that was probably his dismal defensive team, but I'm afraid Harden and Collison playing next to each other would be another sieve. 

                       

                      As for Kawhi, don't disagree. But I remember that draft day and watching Leonard slide down the board when we badly need a SF. Then we picked Morris, and I was livid - Morris was not as good a prospect then, and not as good a player now. Also someone made the comment he wouldn't be as good here - also almost definitely true. He'd be a high level defender, but definitely not the shooter he is. 

                       

                      I never saw Kawhi play in college so perhaps he was a more obvious choice than his stats make him appear.  To me, a guy with solid counting stats but poor percentages coming out of a weak b-ball conference doesn't scream future Finals MVP.  I didn't love the Morris pick, but I understood it.

                       

                      Morris was an All-American (as was Kawhi) coming out of Kansas playing against strong competition in the Big 12.  He averaged 17 & 7 in 28 mpg vs. Kawhi who posted 15 & 10 in 32 mpg against the MWC.  Add to that Morris' much better shooting percentages and I probably would have done the same thing in Morey's shoes.

                       

                      We could go back to every single draft and lament players we missed--even the Olajuwon pick can be second-guessed.  I think it has been discussed on these boards how we could have wound up with a Jordan-Drexler pairing.  Talk about Phi-Slama-Jama...

                       

                      I don't know...the draft is tough.  Did anyone think Dwyane Wade coming out of Marquette would be better than Carmelo after watching him lead Syracuse to the title?  Sure, Wade looked great, but Melo looked other-worldly.  He made people second guess LeBron as the #1 pick that year and it wasn't just media contrived nonsense.

                       

                      (I just glanced back at the 2003 draft.  Luke Walton was drafted that same year...and now he's coaching the Lakers while so many of those guys are still playing.  That's kind of crazy.  I also saw that Kyle Korver was the 51st pick that year.  Joe Dumars had to be on drugs to take Milicic 2nd that year.  That, or David Stern had his family kidnapped, held hostage, and forced Dumars to take him.  There are no other reasonable explanations  :P )

                       

                      As for Darren Collison, I agree that his defense isn't upper echelon.  I think he can be a solid team defender--which is fine by me.

                       

                      To me, player acquisition is kind of on hold until we select a coach.  I know a lot of people like Vogel, but I still believe we need to make a progressive choice and get a guy in here who understands team play on both sides of the ball.  No, more than understands team play--demands it.

                       

                      If we are going to stick with what we're doing then we need more guys like Harden.  One-on-one maestros who can create offense for themselves.

                       

                      No one else's defensive acumen matters until Harden commits to playing defense.  You could have 3 Kawhi Leonards and the defensive center of your choice playing alongside Harden and a good NBA team will pick them apart.  San Antonio was the best defensive team in the league and they still allowed opposing teams to drop 93 ppg on them playing at a very slow pace (24th in the league).

                       

                      Vogel would be a good choice for the status quo.  I'm not a fan of that direction, but it is the likely choice Morey makes.  I'd prefer SVG over Vogel.

                       

                      I'd prefer Blatt over both of them.


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                      #19 majik19

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                        Posted 05 May 2016 - 05:14 PM

                        Vogel would be a good choice for the status quo.  I'm not a fan of that direction, but it is the likely choice Morey makes.  I'd prefer SVG over Vogel.

                         

                        I'd prefer Blatt over both of them.

                         

                        I'd prefer JVG over Blatt (I think), Self possibly over both (though he's probably boom or bust) and just maybe Ettore Messina (Spurs assistant, former Euroleague Championship coach) over all of them. Spurs culture plus foreign influence and championship pedigree? Sign me up. 


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                        #20 slick shoes

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                        Posted 05 May 2016 - 05:22 PM

                        I'd prefer JVG over Blatt (I think), Self possibly over both (though he's probably boom or bust) and just maybe Ettore Messina (Spurs assistant, former Euroleague Championship coach) over all of them. Spurs culture plus foreign influence and championship pedigree? Sign me up. 

                         

                        After watching Budenholzer bring his Spurs pedigree out against the Cavs last night, I'm not so sure that association = success. 


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                        when you win two games in a row that's called a winning streak.

                        trickin' six digits on kicks and still holdin'.




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