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  1. #2401
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    Ah, sorry, missed it. May be outside the projected early 2nd range now, I just took a look at Tankathon but it isn't the most reliable source in this sense. But regardless, if the Spurs like Ajay (or someone, ANYONE) they should make it happen. They have plenty of draft capital, they can trade up, down, in, out... no reason not to get their target. OKC realized this and when they feel confident about some prospect they don't take chance: traded 3 firsts to get an extra pick in the '22 draft where they took Jalen Williams, moved from 12 to 10 to make sure no one leapfrogged them for Cason Wallace, etc. Same thing with Houston going after Sengun, Dallas after Luka, etc. If you feel confident, no need to take a chance and wait for your guy to fall into your lap.
    The problem is, they didn’t trade the 3 picks for JW, they traded them for Ousaman Dieng, who is the only player on OKC that Chip hasn’t been able to teach to shoot.

    They also traded #17 to Minnesota for Poku. So, totaling this up, OKC traded 4 FRPs for Ousaman Dieng and Aleksejev Pokusevski. They were also the ones who drafted Sengün and traded him to Houston.
    Fwiw, re: OKC and Dieng v JW, Windhorst once said on a podcast that JW was the higher target but they knew they could get him for sure at 12. He also basically said that the reason for 12 and not 11 was just in case some sort of snag blew up the trade unexpectedly, they still had their priority player locked up at 12 and had enough Intel that no one was going to get him before that

  2. #2402
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    I agree with everything you said. Point guard is the biggest crapshoot in the draft. I’d rather the Spurs spend assets on a proven pg than draft some teenager who will have no idea what he’s doing for his first three years in the league.
    To be honest every player in this particular draft is going to be a crapshoot

  3. #2403
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    I wouldn't necessarily assume who was the higher priority by their draft slot, OKC landed two CONSECUTIVE picks and at that point they knew they were getting both JDubb and Dieng. The order used could come down to something as simple as prioritizing relations with Dieng's agent. For context, in the presentation of their '22 rookie class, Presti actually stated that they had been following Dieng for long, and Jalen Williams wasn't someone they had on their plans and surprised them at the combine, so I wouldn't be so sure who would they have gone with had they not landed the second pick.

    Oh, and OKC's shooting has much more to do with having great spacing and ball movement to create easy looks for everyone, than it does with Chip, if he was some sort of genie that could turn a non shooter in to an elite shooter, you'd think Giddey would be the prime candidate, yet he's likely the odd man out as a result of his failure in that area.
    OKCs pick was the next one after NY. They traded the picks, had NY select Dieng,then selected JW. I’d say that speaks to their priority. Oh, and they wasted 3 FRPs on the next Poku.

  4. #2404
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    It following college ball heavily but from the highlights and such dillingham reminds me of Ben Gordan a lot.

  5. #2405
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    Fwiw, re: OKC and Dieng v JW, Windhorst once said on a podcast that JW was the higher target but they knew they could get him for sure at 12. He also basically said that the reason for 12 and not 11 was just in case some sort of snag blew up the trade unexpectedly, they still had their priority player locked up at 12 and had enough Intel that no one was going to get him before that
    Love when these inner workings (little as they may be) leak out and give us an insight into what's going on. Thanks.

  6. #2406
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    DeAaron Fox being a poor 3 pt shooter in college is the reason why you don’t skip over poor shooting prospects. Players who start off as strong shooters usually lack major components in their game whilst poor shooters who are good at every other part of their game and only need to work on their shooting. While a mighty tall hill to climb, once they’re up there they usually become one of the best players in the game. DeAaron is the most complete PG in the NBA. I’m jealous of the Kings for having him. A two way player with few to no holes in his game… just amazing.

  7. #2407
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    DeAaron Fox being a poor 3 pt shooter in college is the reason why you don’t skip over poor shooting prospects. Players who start off as strong shooters usually lack major components in their game whilst poor shooters who are good at every other part of their game and only need to work on their shooting. While a mighty tall hill to climb, once they’re up there they usually become one of the best players in the game. DeAaron is the most complete PG in the NBA. I’m jealous of the Kings for having him. A two way player with few to no holes in his game… just amazing.
    Then you like Castle.

  8. #2408
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    DeAaron Fox being a poor 3 pt shooter in college is the reason why you don’t skip over poor shooting prospects. Players who start off as strong shooters usually lack major components in their game whilst poor shooters who are good at every other part of their game and only need to work on their shooting. While a mighty tall hill to climb, once they’re up there they usually become one of the best players in the game. DeAaron is the most complete PG in the NBA. I’m jealous of the Kings for having him. A two way player with few to no holes in his game… just amazing.
    https://tankathon.com/players/compar...--de-aaron-fox

  9. #2409
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    Then you like Castle.

    Castle looks like a potential gem.

  10. #2410
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    Those two players aren’t close to being similar. Fox having the higher usage shows he’s familiar with carrying a team’s offensive load.

  11. #2411
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    Those two players aren’t close to being similar. Fox having the higher usage shows he’s familiar with carrying a team’s offensive load.
    Then, this one:

    https://www.tankathon.com/players/co...rd--lonzo-ball

    Ginobili started with same usage during his rookie season.
    Last edited by alfahdlan; 02-23-2024 at 06:53 AM.

  12. #2412
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    I mean, sure? But Lonzo if far from the PG I dream of when I’m thinking of a championship caliber star.

  13. #2413
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    Came across this really well written piece on reddit yesterday which raises some interesting points regarding upside.

    https://www.reddit.com/r/nba/comment..._rethink_what/

    It reminded me of one of my favorite draft pieces I've seen in the past:

    https://deanondraft.com/2023/02/01/t...ide-of-upside/

    Both are definitely worth a read if you have the time.

  14. #2414
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    Came across this really well written piece on reddit yesterday which raises some interesting points regarding upside.

    https://www.reddit.com/r/nba/comment..._rethink_what/

    It reminded me of one of my favorite draft pieces I've seen in the past:

    https://deanondraft.com/2023/02/01/t...ide-of-upside/

    Both are definitely worth a read if you have the time.
    I would disagree with one thing. It’s not upside that being overrated, it’s physicality, so called run and jump athleticism. Almost all of the so-called surprises KNEW HOW TO PLAY BASKETBALL AT A HIGH LEVEL. They got to the NBA and continued to get better. NBA teams need to stop drafting deer.

    The guy who’s going to be overlooked this year, who everyone will be surprised at in 2-3 years is Topic, who profiles like Jokic, Doncic, and Sengün: not athletic enough, below the rim player. He should be top 5, but 1-3 teams will draft athletes instead of basketball players, so he’ll probably drop to the 6-10 area.

  15. #2415
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    I would disagree with one thing. It’s not upside that being overrated, it’s physicality, so called run and jump athleticism. Almost all of the so-called surprises KNEW HOW TO PLAY BASKETBALL AT A HIGH LEVEL. They got to the NBA and continued to get better. NBA teams need to stop drafting deer.

    The guy who’s going to be overlooked this year, who everyone will be surprised at in 2-3 years is Topic, who profiles like Jokic, Doncic, and Sengün: not athletic enough, below the rim player. He should be top 5, but 1-3 teams will draft athletes instead of basketball players, so he’ll probably drop to the 6-10 area.
    I guess the spurs personally have a great example of the "basketball iq vs run and jump athleticism" argument -

    On the one hand, you have Kyle Anderson - enormous length, high bball iq, least athletic player I've ever seen
    On the other hand, you have Lonnie Walker IV - positionally small, elite run and jump athlete, struggles with bball iq

    We can discuss regarding which if these guys has had the better career with regards to impact on winning. My personal preference is Anderson, whose career and team success has been highly correlated to the success of his jumper by season.

    I guess the way I see it is that run and jump athleticism is more of a force multiplier when it's above a requisite baseline. Like all successful NBA players need some baseline level of athleticism. Above that you're looking at primarily coordination and processing speed, with length and lateral agility being almost but not quite as important.

    ++ Processing speed with average run and jump athleticism: Jokic, Doncic, Trae Young (?)
    ++ Run and jump athleticism with average processing speed: Anthony Edwards, Zach Lavine
    ++ Processing speed with ++ run and jump athleticism: LeBron

    Who knows, this is all theory crafting anyway but just the way I see it

  16. #2416
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    At ude and motivation are so crucial. For example, Sengun plays like an animal looking to dominate. Walker unfortunately was often avoiding getting involved at all, avoiding contact to ridiculous extremes.

  17. #2417
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    I guess the spurs personally have a great example of the "basketball iq vs run and jump athleticism" argument -

    On the one hand, you have Kyle Anderson - enormous length, high bball iq, least athletic player I've ever seen
    On the other hand, you have Lonnie Walker IV - positionally small, elite run and jump athlete, struggles with bball iq

    We can discuss regarding which if these guys has had the better career with regards to impact on winning. My personal preference is Anderson, whose career and team success has been highly correlated to the success of his jumper by season.

    I guess the way I see it is that run and jump athleticism is more of a force multiplier when it's above a requisite baseline. Like all successful NBA players need some baseline level of athleticism. Above that you're looking at primarily coordination and processing speed, with length and lateral agility being almost but not quite as important.

    ++ Processing speed with average run and jump athleticism: Jokic, Doncic, Trae Young (?)
    ++ Run and jump athleticism with average processing speed: Anthony Edwards, Zach Lavine
    ++ Processing speed with ++ run and jump athleticism: LeBron

    Who knows, this is all theory crafting anyway but just the way I see it
    This is why I'm excited to see Topic come back and begin play. As I understand, he has ++processing speed and I think that's what we need in a facilitator. We obviously won't know for sure for a couple more weeks, but I'm ready to see some games of him soon.

  18. #2418
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    This is why I'm excited to see Topic come back and begin play. As I understand, he has ++processing speed and I think that's what we need in a facilitator. We obviously won't know for sure for a couple more weeks, but I'm ready to see some games of him soon.
    the injury was a bummer because i was looking forward to seeing topic's level of play in the euro league. i'm hoping to see him back on the court soon.

  19. #2419
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    I guess the spurs personally have a great example of the "basketball iq vs run and jump athleticism" argument -

    On the one hand, you have Kyle Anderson - enormous length, high bball iq, least athletic player I've ever seen
    On the other hand, you have Lonnie Walker IV - positionally small, elite run and jump athlete, struggles with bball iq

    We can discuss regarding which if these guys has had the better career with regards to impact on winning. My personal preference is Anderson, whose career and team success has been highly correlated to the success of his jumper by season.

    I guess the way I see it is that run and jump athleticism is more of a force multiplier when it's above a requisite baseline. Like all successful NBA players need some baseline level of athleticism. Above that you're looking at primarily coordination and processing speed, with length and lateral agility being almost but not quite as important.

    ++ Processing speed with average run and jump athleticism: Jokic, Doncic, Trae Young (?)
    ++ Run and jump athleticism with average processing speed: Anthony Edwards, Zach Lavine
    ++ Processing speed with ++ run and jump athleticism: LeBron

    Who knows, this is all theory crafting anyway but just the way I see it
    Processing speed of these young talents are on display here:

  20. #2420
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    With the way Pop seems to be hammering home the lack of shooting more than ever this season, I get the sense they've finally reached the breaking point with investing significant assets in players who can't shoot.

    Clearly, Risacher stands out as their obvious target but they probably have to get top 2 to land him. Out of teams with a decent chance to end up top 2, only the Wizards and maybe Craptors strike me as potential Topic teams.

    Failing that and based on current rankings, there's probably a good chance we see a perceived "reach".

  21. #2421
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    With the way Pop seems to be hammering home the lack of shooting more than ever this season, I get the sense they've finally reached the breaking point with investing significant assets in players who can't shoot.

    Clearly, Risacher stands out as their obvious target but they probably have to get top 2 to land him. Out of teams with a decent chance to end up top 2, only the Wizards and maybe Craptors strike me as potential Topic teams.

    Failing that and based on current rankings, there's probably a good chance we see a perceived "reach".
    Man, it's a conundrum.

    You need shooting.

    But do you use a 1-4 pick on shooting?

  22. #2422
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  23. #2423
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    Came across this really well written piece on reddit yesterday which raises some interesting points regarding upside.

    https://www.reddit.com/r/nba/comment..._rethink_what/

    It reminded me of one of my favorite draft pieces I've seen in the past:

    https://deanondraft.com/2023/02/01/t...ide-of-upside/

    Both are definitely worth a read if you have the time.
    Thank you! I was about to write a post this week about how “ceiling” and “floor” conversations had gone way off course and these articles summarize it well. The NBA has become less an “athletic” game and more about skills. A 19 year old athletic freak who has failed to develop skills does not have more upside than a solid 19 year old athlete who has already shown the ability to develop skills. You look at numerous recent drafts and the players who turn into stars are often guys who were seen as “high floor and low ceiling.”

    Part of how you can measure a players ability to add skills is shooting, but I would also point to basketball IQ.
    Players who can help you win even when they are having an off night shooting.
    Stats like Assist rate and turnover rate and steals rate and charges drawn point to someone with the mental ability to contribute to a championship team. Do they show situational awareness of the clock and other key game situations? Are the opportunistic to create easy points or create easy turnovers etc?

    When I look at the draft class, few players exhibit these traits more than Sheppard.
    I like Topic as well and would take him above Sheppard, but Reed would be an awesome get with the Raptors pick.

    In this upcoming draft I think Sheppard is underrated.

  24. #2424
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    I guess the spurs personally have a great example of the "basketball iq vs run and jump athleticism" argument -

    On the one hand, you have Kyle Anderson - enormous length, high bball iq, least athletic player I've ever seen
    On the other hand, you have Lonnie Walker IV - positionally small, elite run and jump athlete, struggles with bball iq

    We can discuss regarding which if these guys has had the better career with regards to impact on winning. My personal preference is Anderson, whose career and team success has been highly correlated to the success of his jumper by season.

    I guess the way I see it is that run and jump athleticism is more of a force multiplier when it's above a requisite baseline. Like all successful NBA players need some baseline level of athleticism. Above that you're looking at primarily coordination and processing speed, with length and lateral agility being almost but not quite as important.

    ++ Processing speed with average run and jump athleticism: Jokic, Doncic, Trae Young (?)
    ++ Run and jump athleticism with average processing speed: Anthony Edwards, Zach Lavine
    ++ Processing speed with ++ run and jump athleticism: LeBron

    Who knows, this is all theory crafting anyway but just the way I see it
    Much of this is situational based on where they’re picking, so it’s hard to glean a lot. We forget the spurs were picking in the late 20s for such a long time, that we were almost too excited when we got a pick in the high teens. Historically most of those are trash, which to me speaks a lot about what the spurs were able to do with the likes of Anderson, CoJo, White, DJ, Keldon.

  25. #2425
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    Thank you! I was about to write a post this week about how “ceiling” and “floor” conversations had gone way off course and these articles summarize it well. The NBA has become less an “athletic” game and more about skills. A 19 year old athletic freak who has failed to develop skills does not have more upside than a solid 19 year old athlete who has already shown the ability to develop skills. You look at numerous recent drafts and the players who turn into stars are often guys who were seen as “high floor and low ceiling.”

    Part of how you can measure a players ability to add skills is shooting, but I would also point to basketball IQ.
    Players who can help you win even when they are having an off night shooting.
    Stats like Assist rate and turnover rate and steals rate and charges drawn point to someone with the mental ability to contribute to a championship team. Do they show situational awareness of the clock and other key game situations? Are the opportunistic to create easy points or create easy turnovers etc?

    When I look at the draft class, few players exhibit these traits more than Sheppard.
    I like Topic as well and would take him above Sheppard, but Reed would be an awesome get with the Raptors pick.

    In this upcoming draft I think Sheppard is underrated.
    Yes, for as much of a proponent of processing speed as I have, I still don't want to understate the importance of athleticism. I do think that prioritizing athleticism over bball IQ works situationally. Athleticism, specifically run and jump athleticism, takes more priority the fewer players you are playing against. If basketball was played as a 3 on 3 or 1 on 1 I'd prioritize that over bball IQ all day long. With the 90s to 2000s playstyle with illegal defense rules and when hand checking was allowed, I'd bank on athleticism all day long too. But with switch heavy and pass-heavy offenses now, athleticism matters less than it used to.

    That being said, one of the instances where I'd prioritize athleticism heavily is if I were looking for an iso scorer / iso defender. The kind of guy every great team needs, shot clock winding down, broken play, need a bucket at the end of the game, basically what I envision Vassell being in the future. On the defensive end, a guy who can lock down an opposing team's best scorer one on one. A great example of this is Jaylen Brown for the Celtics, who came in with great measurements and athleticism but has continued to struggle with decision making and his team defense. He serves a valuable role for the Celtics as their tough shot maker who's predominantly a play finisher and for that role specifically I'd really be looking at hyper athletic guys over guys with fast processing speed. Ultimately athleticism is great for advantage creation, but if you don't have the processing speed to know what to do once you've created that advantage it doesn't do you much good in the modern game unless you're a designated play finisher.

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