Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Andre Miller and Clipper free agents

Expand Messages
  • harlanzo
    I thought the recent Andre Miller trade raises some interesting questions on potential and willingness to pay for it. On a talent level this seems like a
    Message 1 of 5 , Jul 31 9:12 PM
    • 0 Attachment
      I thought the recent Andre Miller trade raises some interesting
      questions on potential and willingness to pay for it. On a talent
      level this seems like a clear win for the Clipps (though I know the
      Cavs have some finance issues that influenced their decision making
      process). But I think this trade is more interesting in that the
      Clippers have, yet again, a team with potential but no real on court
      accomplishments. It is deja vu for Donald Sterling all over again.

      This is the third time since the late 80s Clippers have put together
      a nice potential team with high draft picks. In the late 80s and
      early 90s the clipps had a young team coached by Larry Brown that was
      a seven seed to years in a row and narrowly lost game 5s in the first
      round to Utah (91-92) and Houston (92-93). The teams had Charles
      Smith, Danny Manning, Ron Harper, Loy Vaught, Ken Norman, Stanley
      Roberts, and Gary Grant. Not the 85 Lakers but a good team that
      seemed to have upside potential. Sterling had a chance to pay these
      guys but chose not to. This was looked at as cheapness but was it
      really a bad decision in retrospect? lets look:

      1) Danny Manning was traded for Dominique Wilkins after contract
      talks broke down. Sterling also let Nique walk. Manning signed with
      Phoenix for a big contract (I think they had a wink one year deal
      plus a big extension). In PHoenix, Manning averaged about 14 ppg and
      5 rpg and missed 23% of their games over 5 years. (Nique got a big
      deal from the celts that broke down and was never really a regular in
      the NBA for more than one more year.

      2)Ron Harper was let sign with the Bulls. Harper obviously was a
      nice complementary player for the bulls but did only average 8 ppg
      for the Bulls. this was not worth a 5 year $25 million deal.

      3) Ken Norman signed with Milwaukee and had a long term deal. He
      scored 12 ppg for two years and then was a fringe players whose
      contract slot outlasted his career on atlanta.

      4) Gary Grant was kept around for a cheap deal and was decent point
      guard for another couple of years.

      5) Stanley Roberts stayed. injury and weight issues really killed
      his career. after 92-93, he never scored more than 7 ppg in a full
      season. (I think he was banned from the league for drug problems
      later).

      6) Charles Smith was traded for Mark Jackson (the point guard).
      Smith, as New Yorkers will remember, was given a hug deal and was not
      that good (he could not dunk the damn ball against the bulls!). He
      is another whose contract outlived his playing career. The Clips
      traded jackson for prospects (piatkowski, and malik sealy).

      7) the clips kept Loy Vaught and he was ok (he averaged a double-
      double for three years). but when he was free agent the clipps let
      him go Detroit. Detroit gave hims a four year deal of which he was
      active 44% of the time averaging roughly 3 ppg.

      While this clipper teams seemed fun, Sterling clearly was correct in
      not paying big bucks for what is overall serious rapid decline after
      1994. (this is also excluding Benoit Benjamin who the clips let go
      and was given a big deal by the sonics to their regret)

      in the mid to late 90s (96-97 to 98-99) the clips had a weak team but
      also with young players with some potential who had to be paid or let
      walk. THe team had Vaught, Malik Sealy, Rodney Rogers, Bo Outlaw,
      Lammond Murray, Brent Barry, Lorenzen Wright, Maurice Taylor, and
      Derek Anderson. The team squeaked into the playoffs in 96-97 and
      were swept in the first round. But there was some talent. Sterling
      let everyone of these guys go and it seemed like a good decision:

      1) Vaught we have already examined
      2) Sealy was a solid player but probably not worth a big deal but was
      a solid backup on the Twolves. (he unfortuantely was killed by a
      drunk driver).
      3) Rodney Rogers was let go to PHoenix where he went from sixth man
      of the year to pariah they wanted out. He was ok a doulbe figure
      scorer but also not a guy you really want to over pay for.
      4) Lamond Murray looked like potentially good scorer but the Clips
      traded him for another good prospect, Derek Anderson. He scored
      17ppg for the clips. but they let him go because he wanted big
      bucks. he is know wildly overpaid on portland ($70million i think)
      and is not as good as bonzi wells his backup.
      5) The clips also refused to pay brent barry. they traded him for
      ike austin who played well for them in a half year (14ppg 7 rpg).
      Ike got a big deal from Orlando in 99 and promptly bombed. he is now
      out of the league. Barry is actually a good player on seattle(he may
      have been worth keeping if the price was right).
      6) Bo Outlaw was the defensive specialist for LA and he signed with
      Orlando where he was pretty good not great. he is now on phoenix who
      has no place for him but can't really move his contract.
      7) Maurice Taylor scored well for the clips (15 ppg in three years).
      They still let him go to Houston for a big deal. he was weak his
      first year there (13 ppg 5.5 rpg) and blew out his achilles missing
      all of last year.
      8) Lorenzen Wright also looked like a nice player for the clips.
      They let him go and he is blossoming a little on memphis (12 ppg and
      9 rpg last year).

      Overall, Sterling has been pretty right about not paying for talent.
      Barry and Wright seemed ok but only at the right price. I know a lot
      of these guys do not seem great today but the players seemed to have
      the same glow of potential that a lot of the guys the clips have
      today do. Does this mean Sterling should let all these guys go too?
      no, I think brand and miller are keepers. (olowokandi is probably
      not at the max). But to write off sterling as a cheapskate ignores
      that he was correct on most of his decisions. I am not saying he
      runs a good team and that he could do some things differently but I
      would be very wary paying too much for q richardson, maggette,
      olowokandi, mcinnis & miles (who are gone already), and even the
      stars brand and miller.
    • HoopStudies
      ... Stars are rare and the Clips haven t had any (I don t remember the early to mid 80 s, but I think T. Cummings was there), as you point out. They did have
      Message 2 of 5 , Aug 1, 2002
      • 0 Attachment
        --- In APBR_analysis@y..., "harlanzo" <harlanzo@y...> wrote:
        > no, I think brand and miller are keepers. (olowokandi is probably
        > not at the max). But to write off sterling as a cheapskate ignores
        > that he was correct on most of his decisions. I am not saying he
        > runs a good team and that he could do some things differently but I
        > would be very wary paying too much for q richardson, maggette,
        > olowokandi, mcinnis & miles (who are gone already), and even the
        > stars brand and miller.

        Stars are rare and the Clips haven't had any (I don't remember the
        early to mid 80's, but I think T. Cummings was there), as you point
        out. They did have a star coach in Larry Brown, though. Now, both
        Miller and Brand are stars or the closest thing to potential stars
        that I can remember them having. If they pay those guys and fill in
        the parts around, they can be good. You don't mention Odom,
        interestingly. And neither did I.
      • Michael K. Tamada
        On Thu, 1 Aug 2002, harlanzo wrote: [...] ... Good points, although team context means a lot also. Players will perform differently and appear different
        Message 3 of 5 , Aug 1, 2002
        • 0 Attachment
          On Thu, 1 Aug 2002, harlanzo wrote:

          [...]

          > Overall, Sterling has been pretty right about not paying for talent.

          Good points, although team context means a lot also. Players will perform
          differently and appear different depending on their role on a team.
          Harper's probably the best example, he really was a legit all-star level
          player with the Clips, but knee injuries slowed him down and when he went
          to the Bulls his job was to be a big defensive guard. But he was Clyde
          Drexler Lite with the Clips (and was showing that talent at Cleveland too,
          before he was traded to the Clips -- 23 ppg as a rookie.)

          Manning and Smith were also players who truly were at all-star level --
          but marginal all-stars, and certainly not all-pro level (ie. the
          difference between say Detlef Schrempf vs Shawn Kemp in his prime -- they
          were more Schrempf-like than Kempian). Put into other contexts, they can
          become non-all-stars or appear to.

          But you're right that many of the other players definitely were not star
          level players. Vaught was starter quality, but as a below average
          starter. Mo Taylor never impressed me.

          > Barry and Wright seemed ok but only at the right price. I know a lot

          Yeah, Wright's a decent role player but nothing more. Barry never
          impressed me with the Clips either. Of course since coming to Seattle has
          had some amazing efficiency stats. So he turned into a starter quality
          player, possibly an above average starter.

          > of these guys do not seem great today but the players seemed to have
          > the same glow of potential that a lot of the guys the clips have
          > today do. Does this mean Sterling should let all these guys go too?
          > no, I think brand and miller are keepers. (olowokandi is probably
          > not at the max). But to write off sterling as a cheapskate ignores
          > that he was correct on most of his decisions. I am not saying he

          He was correct not to pay them as if they were all-pro players. E.g.
          Manning was the first player drafted, and he did have a good career, but
          was never a guy who deserved to be paid like an all-pro.

          But that doesn't mean Sterling was correct to let them walk. Manning may
          not have been an all-pro but he was marginal all-star level.

          > runs a good team and that he could do some things differently but I
          > would be very wary paying too much for q richardson, maggette,
          > olowokandi, mcinnis & miles (who are gone already), and even the
          > stars brand and miller.

          The current paradigm in the NBA is that you need to have at least one
          ultra-superstar, preferably two, to win a championship. And the rest is
          just supporting cast. Shaq, Duncan, Hakeem, Jordan. With help of course
          from Kobe, David Robinson, and Pippen (Hakeem amazingly managed to win
          with nothing but supporting players).

          The trouble with the Clips (and with most teams) is that even their best
          playes are not at that ultra-superstar level. Brand is very good, but
          he's not Bob Pettit, and the Bulls traded him away because they perceived
          that he was an all-star level player but not ultra-superstar. Miller's
          not at that level either (although he's young and developing and still has
          a chance to reach that level).

          So the Clips roster, even if Sterling keeps his talent and lets those
          youngsters mature, is probably not a championship roster.

          But does that mean that Sterling would be right to let his talent walk, as
          he did with his early 1990s talent? I don't think so for two reasons.
          First, very few teams have championship level talent. Just because
          you're not the Lakers doesn't mean that your team is a failure and you
          should bust up the team and let the talent walk. Second, who's to say
          that the ultra-superstar paradigm will continue to be the correct one?
          There have been teams that have won championships without ultra-superstar
          talent, the 1979 Sonics being the most well-known example (not a single
          Hall of Famer on their roster). But I'd put the Pistons in that category
          also: Isiah's a Hall of Famer and arguably was an ultra-superstar, but
          I'd put him more in the all-pro category -- he was never an MVP for
          example. Those Pistons teams won by having great depth of talent,
          rather than just having 1 or 2 ultra-superstars.


          So Sterling should not pay his talented roster as if he's got a bunch of
          all-pros on that roster. You are correct that they're not. But he does
          have what appear to be a number of future marginal all-stars, or better,
          and he'll have a good team (maybe not a championship one but a good one)
          it he keeps them together. Getting Miller was a good move. Figuring out
          what to do with Olowokandi, and how much to pay him, is the tough
          decision, as we've mentioned before. His price will almost certainly
          exceed his true contribution level. But if Sterling doesn't pay him, he
          risks a domino effect and losing much of his young talent.



          --MKT
        • harlanzo
          ... bunch of ... does ... better, ... one) ... true, but looking at past history almost all these players was over paid compared to actual contributions.
          Message 4 of 5 , Aug 1, 2002
          • 0 Attachment
            --- In APBR_analysis@y..., "Michael K. Tamada" <tamada@o...> wrote:
            >
            > So Sterling should not pay his talented roster as if he's got a
            bunch of
            > all-pros on that roster. You are correct that they're not. But he
            does
            > have what appear to be a number of future marginal all-stars, or
            better,
            > and he'll have a good team (maybe not a championship one but a good
            one)
            > it he keeps them together.

            true, but looking at past history almost all these players was over
            paid compared to actual contributions. Sterling probably could not
            have locked up manning or charles smith at fair prices. so isn't
            probably better to let them go and start over? It would be nice if
            he would pay them to have a decent team but if you assess the
            situation in all or nothing terms its sterling probably comes out
            ahead profit wise starting over cheap than paying a lot for a decent
            team.


            > But if Sterling doesn't pay him, he
            > risks a domino effect and losing much of his young talent.
            >
            maybe but i think the players understand they can't all be paid and
            thus that someone would have to go. Still, you are right that there
            is something disheartening, to clip fans (if there are any), about
            letting everyone go even if it's the right decision.

            dean, I completely forgot about Odom, whom i think is really good
            when he plays. he is potentially better than all of them but I have
            no idea whether or not they should keep. I guess its just a function
            of cost.

            >
            > --MKT
          • mikel_ind
            ... one ... amazingly managed to win ... Of course, there was only one Hakeem. But I d rate Drexler in 95 as equal to Pippen, outside of Pip s best 3-4
            Message 5 of 5 , Aug 1, 2002
            • 0 Attachment
              --- In APBR_analysis@y..., "Michael K. Tamada" <tamada@o...> wrote:
              > The current paradigm in the NBA is that you need to have at least
              one
              > ultra-superstar, preferably two, to win a championship. ... (Hakeem
              amazingly managed to win
              > with nothing but supporting players).

              Of course, there was only one Hakeem. But I'd rate Drexler in '95 as
              equal to Pippen, outside of Pip's best 3-4 years. And in '94 it was
              Otis Thorpe, as good as Horace Grant -- outside of Grant's best
              couple of years.

              Then you had Kenny Smith, Vernon Maxwell, and Sam Cassell in the
              backcourt; Mario Elie and playoff monster Robert Horry at forward.
              This all makes the Rockets a deeper team than the Bulls ever were.

              >
              >... the Clips ... best
              > players are not at that ultra-superstar level. Brand is very
              good, ... but not ultra-superstar.
              >... who's to say
              > that the ultra-superstar paradigm will continue ... teams that have
              won championships without ultra-superstar
              > talent, the 1979 Sonics ... the Pistons in that category
              > also: Isiah's a Hall of Famer and arguably was an ultra-
              superstar ... >

              Etc.

              Now whatever happened to plain old run-of-the-mill superstar? It's
              superlative inflation, I say!

              I have a numerical cutoff for superstar, allstar, basic star, etc.
              They are nice round numbers in my "T#nd#x-like" system.

              I have also come up with Megastar and Ultrastar (I may get them mixed
              up occasionally). Isiah was a borderline-superstar at best, though
              he could get it going, in playoffs especially.

              Ultrastars of the Jordanesque variety are rare -- indeed, no other
              guard comes close. Wilt, Kareem, David Robinson, and Shaq have
              reached that level, along with MJ himself. Karl Malone grazed that
              plateau.

              Megastars have been Bird, Magic, Barkley, Ewing, Hakeem, and now,
              Duncan. McAdoo was a maybe, and Oscar.

              This is a pretty thin list, the players who have gone beyond the
              superstar level.

              Other undisputed superstars have been Mikan, Pettit, Baylor, West,
              Archibald, Lanier, Erving, Walton, Gilmore, Moses, Bernard King,
              McHale, Drexler, Kemp, Pippen, Mourning, Grant Hill, Garnett.

              The list still isn't unwieldy, and some of these guys qualified only
              for a year or two. It's an exclusive bunch.

              Then there's a gray zone of marginal, close, maybe-superstars. Quite
              a few I would include there, and still you have to draw a line
              somewhere.
            Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.