Just throwing this out there for discussion ...
Let's say the arena situation was resolved and the Sonics were in no danger of leaving. With that in mind, would you be worried about the future of this team, strictly looking at it from an on-the-court perspective? Does Sam Presti's "culture" nonsense from the offseason outweigh the rudderless direction of this sinking ship? Do you have confidence that PJ Carlesimo is the right man to be guiding Kevin Durant's, Jeff Green's, and (possibly) Derrick Rose's collective futures? Do you have any belief that this franchise is going to win a playoff game in the next two to three years?
How many games will this team win next year, with three rookies getting the most minutes, absolutely nothing cooking in free agency, and PJ running the show? 25 wins? 20? Can we call someone from the Warriors' old front office staff to let us know how best to run a non-playoff team for a decade? Your best player, Durant, seemingly plays the same position as your second-best player, Green, you've got no help at center or point guard, and if you don't get one of the top two picks this year, you won't have any next year, either. Not exactly a recipe for success, if you ask me.
Okay, it's hard the day after a debacle like Sunday night's in Denver to have any thoughtful insights into a team's future, but, man, I am the only one thinking these thoughts?
I think PJ has done an okay job since coming here, I cannot blame the the woes of this team solely on him. The Cleveland, Bulls trade I think decimated our team, as evidence with Donyell Marshalls "shooting" touch last night. The good news is that Durant has been playing pretty efficient basketball in the past week or two, it is nice to see some growth from him. But along with that, I have to agree that having both Durant and Green creates some lineup problems. In Presti we (have to) trust.
If Seattle doesn't get #1 or #2 this year, we're really going to find out how good of a talent evaluator Sam Presti is - the next tier of talent is wide open in my opinion.
Also, it will be interesting to see what the Sonics can get for Ridnour this summer, or if Wilcox is dealt. I'm afraid that if the arena situation remains unsettled and the Sonics lose the court case, we could see some awful basketball next year because CB is just going to keep all his pennies to himself.
My guess would be 27 wins
and btw, remember those questions everyone sent TIME to ask David Stern? the magazine is out and there's only 1 Sonics question:
Q. Why would you let the Seattle Supersonics relocate to Oklahoma City? Youre moving away from an Asian Pacific community to a much less diverse place. Can you explain your logic?
A. I guess my logic is that there are plenty of franchises that have jumping-off points to Asia. It could be the Bay Area, it could be Portland, it could be Los Angeles. And our Asian philosophy is more about being there. We have offices in Tokyo, Hong Kong, Shanghai and Beijing.
Bummer that the magazine had absolutely no mention of there being like 98% questions about the Sonics.....
Ridiculous. I'm guessing the conversation went like,
TIME: Mr. Stern, how about these 10,000 questions about the Sonics' relocation and the way you're screwing the city and its 40 years of NBA history?
TIME: But what about ...
TIME: Yes, sir.
I agree that Jeff Green was an odd coupling with KD. That #5 pick was a tough one - we obviously had to take KD at #2, and by the time the 5th pick rolled around Conley and Horford, either of whom would've been an excellent fit, were gone. So who should we have picked at #5? Not Yi, not Brewer, perhaps Brandan Wright, perhaps Noah, not Spencer, not Law, Young, Wright, Stuckey, Thornton etc. The bad luck for us was that the 2007 draft class thus far doesn't appear to include many great players who weren't small forwards available from #5 onwards. I'm not sure that B Wright or Noah would've been any improvement on Collison to be honest, but in retrospect they might've been wiser picks position-wise, and both have broken out the odd decent game this season.
agree with the thought on the way the draft played out - but then who was holding a gun to our head to make us get the #5 pick? Let's say the Sonics keep Allen for another year, and then deal him this summer. Would his value have changed all that much? What's worth more right now, Ray Allen's expiring contract and his 20 ppg and Big Baby Davis, or Jeff Green and the Cleveland poo poo platter we have now?
i have seen constant improvment in KD and what i think will happen with green is a 3 man rotation with KD and some random SG we pick up either late in the draft or FA or maby trade
as for our pick if its not derik rose then let it be a center i just cant take it i want a center a reall center not a 7 foot power forward not a 7-9' wingspan idiot just... a decent center
Rose, Beasley, Gordon, Mayo, Love....can the sonics go wrong with any of those guys? Obviously Rose would be the ideal pick but I would be happy with any of those guys. What about Hibbert?
The present roster situation, amount of picks the Sonics have this year and Presti's resume seem to make it essential that the Sonics try to find some diamonds in the rough later in the draft even if they get the first pick. This is what it was believed Presti was brought in for and it's been assumed that was why he was trading for picks is to do just that (and more, obviously, but...)
In my opinion, Presti has done well with drafting, trading and FA acquisitions so far. I actually think he may be the best all around GM Seattle has had in a long time in any sport.
I can't give expectations for what a roster that is barely beginning to be put together will do. Presti has shown the ability to change a good deal of the roster in little time, so I have no clue what it'll be come next year. I mean, Presti presently could take 6 of the top 60 players available. Right now if there was no lotto the picks they'd get are Tied for #2, T-#22(from Pheonix), T-#32, #47(From Portland via Boston), #49 (from Denver), and #60 (from Houston.) What's the roster look like if they trade away a few players and take all those picks? It could happen. I don't think they end up making more than 4 of them though. My guess is that Presti will put together a roster that is fairly young and still wins 30+ games. I'd peg it down more if I had any real idea at the roster.
The talent in the draft is deeper than 2 players. There is a lot of depth in the draft at positions the Sonics need, but only one Rose...I understand thinking that Rose is a great fit at PG and therefore they're worse off with others. Even that Rose is the only PG you'd expect to contribute much next year. There are a few good Centers, PG's and SG's that could fall to that #22 and even the #32 pick. Presti may even be able to find a jewel in the 40's.
Durant and Green...I think Durant fits well as a SG and Green fits well as a SF. If Green at some point proves ready to be a PF then you can talk about Durant at SF, but until then they fit well where they've been. I do understand that they presently both fit best at SF, but even that can change.
I am on the fence about Carlesimo. I've seen things executed by a group of young players on the floor that a coach was definitely involved with and I've seen young (and even veteran) players play without much effort and make horrible decisions or moves at times. That's pretty standard NBA fare, the way I see it. Most of the players have improved areas of their game noticeably over the course of the year and less have not improved much at all during the season. I've witnessed things in game where it almost seems like Carlesimo is trying to throw it (no scorer on the floor was the big one), so win/loss wise I'm not too impressed. As far as young players improving I'm pleased with what I've seen. I don't know that the effort and improvement have been worse than should be expected from such a young team, but it couldn't be by much.
By PER Green is 10th best performer on team and only because Presti took a lot of weak players back in the recent trades to save Clay money.
Green may or may not have big upside but I can't call him anything more than 5th "best" player right now.
Honestly, I think there is plenty of blame to go around. There is no energy around this team in Seattle due to the ongoing off-court problems, and that has to trickle down to the players and coaching staff. It is hard to be motivated when you're already playing mean-nothing games in the middle of November.
Under 30 wins is a bad season and they are headed for a second for sure. If they improve from there, ok. The first 2 don't come with a totally free pass but a third season below 30 wins would prompt a much harsher judgment of Presti's work.
So we're now the 2nd worst team in the league, as the Grizzlies and T-Wolves won last night and are now one loss better then we are.
Looking at their schedule(they'll play each other 3 more times and have some other winneable games) and what we'll face during those final 15 games of the season, i can't see us finishing with a better record then those two teams.
We'd therefore go in to the lottery with the 2nd most ping pong balls and should hope that we won't have as much bad luck as the Celtics, Bucks and Grizzlies had last year.
So if we do end up with the 2nd worst record of the league, we won't pick any lower than #5, which would guarantee us one out of Beasley, Rose, Bayless, Mayo or Gordon. Rose would be ideal, but i could live with Mayo, Bayless or Beasley as well, while Gordon fill lesser of a need for us.
BTW: As far as how many wins this team will have next year goes:
I think it will be something between 25 - 30, cause we'll put another real good talent(or two, if Sam manages to trade up, with all those extra picks he's got) next to Durant and Green and should win a couple more games than this season.
Thought this was funny and it's true. Gary Washburn does seem to be MIA.
On the other hand, the Sonics won't have either Kurt Thomas or Wally S. next season. We can bemoan their problems, but those guys added something to this year's team (if you don't believe me, take a look at our record since the trades were made - ouch).
It will depend on what moves if any Presti makes this summer, especially in regard to Wilcox, Ridnour, and Wilkins.
In hindsight I'd have preferred Noah over Green.
Yes Presti can mess up a top 5 pick this year. Some of the top 5 will disappoint.
Green is not performing like a top 5 and at end of 3 years there is at least as much chance as not that will still be the case.
I don't claim to know, just asking, will D Rose outperform Raymond Felton or Jameer Nelson? Fall somewhere between is probably ok. Best case might be Felton's defense and Nelson's offense.
I think with Rose you're getting a guy who understands that a point guard's job is to distribute, yet at the same time he is very athletic, above-average height for a PG (6'4), can shoot fairly well, and plays good defense.
Plus, he's played for a top 5 NCAA school and led them to an exceptional record and he doesn't seem to have any off-court issues. His free throw shooting isn't good enough (at or below 70%), but just ask Karl Malone how that can change with practice. He's definitely above Felton or Nelson, at least at this stage.
The biggest problem I see with this roster is the redundacy of F's on this team. A bunch of guys can play the 3 or 4, and there isn't much established for a position. Worse, there's a gaping hole at the SG, forcing Carleismo to come up with a bunch of nonsense for a guy whose 6'9, and having averaged nearly 12 boards a game in college no less, playing out of position against a quicker, even to an extent more athletic, group of smaller players. I know bullshit when I see it, and quite frankly Durant playing the SG is completely that.
That being said I still believe the biggest mistake the Sonics made (player/basketball aspect wise) was not drafting Brewer instead. I realize Brewer is a SG/SF, but he's the type of defensive player that could easily, based on potential alone, help rectify some of the defensive issues the Supes clearly have. I don't think the options were perfect @ #5, but I don't think Jeff Green won't represent a problem in the future to how the Sonics look at drafting players. After all Presti was trying to create a specific brand & culture wasn't he? Good luck creating that in the vortex that is Clay Bennett.
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