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I was just thinking about the arguments and debates in regards to FO plan and vision and how we ended up where are today. Lots of comparison to the Spurs and how they maintained their success. It keeps going back to how SAS infused their old core with young guys and development. Some(me included) have falsely accused of FO of never trying to do the same thing. However, we are overlooking the entire Qpon experience. Qpon was supposed to be our Kawhi Leonard (lite) and replace Tony Allen. LH started the transition early when he would routinely put Qpon on the toughest defensive assignments in spite of TA being available. Qpon was on the path to being our answer for 3&D players. He then had his defining breakout series against SAS in the WCF. Afterwards Levien wisely locked him up on a super team friendly deal. Which ensured Qpon was a Grizz for the full duration that a defensive specialist should be on. Basically he would be getting paid about 3.5m till he turned 30. As we always discuss a player that is a defensive specialist has a definite shelf-life and our FO seemed to have understood that. Unfortunately, some funny things happened around the time Qpon had that great series and locked up a longterm deal. Lionel wasn't resigned - this is the coach that fully supported him and he respected. Now he is gone and Joerger gets promoted. I am assuming from the way they flamed out that Joerger did not have the same level of respect from Qpon. Qpon got the "Big Head" - He suddenly wanted to prove to the naysayers that he was more than just a 3&D guy and his NBA2K ratings were too low(i am serious). So he started trying to do too much on offense and not enough on defense. Injuries - he couldn't stay healthy and missed out on prime opportunities to cement his status with the team. (Seems like this is happening to JAdams now too). This forced the team to learn how to move on without him and made Tony even more indispensable as a defensive stopper. Developed the Dreaded "PumpFake". All of those things add up to why Qpon probably had to go. But looking back at the justifications for trading for him and resigning him it does show that the FO (at that time) did have a plan B for Tony at least. Qpon was becoming a dependable outside corner 3 shooter and had athleticism to defend 3 positions, which he did. It was just that once his ego got involved he stopped focusing on what he can do and instead tried to prove what he could do. Joerger of course is showing that he doesn't know how to delicately handle situations with players (ie: james johnson, Qpon, and Tony). Hence it got pretty bad quickly. The other unfortunate fallout from the "Qpon Joerger fiasco" was it basically caused us to overlook developing Jamaal Franklin into a 3&D guy. Say what you will but dude was a solid defender whenever he actually got minutes. DJ infatuation with vets prevented us from developing a Plan C for Tony's inevitable decline. We tend to forget that basically Qpon was a 'James Ennis type' back when he was with NOP - he only avg 2.8ppg for them when we traded for him. Lionel played him because he was tired of Tony's limitations on offense. As much flack as i have given LH he has constantly shown to be more flexible Coach rotation-wise than Joerger has ever been. After Qpon flamed out Joerger basically doubled-down on Vets. So he should look in the mirror before pointing fingers at the Front Office for failings with this roster. If he took the time to develop guys and/or define roles for them then maybe we wouldn't be where we are today. Thoughts?
Tillery actually had a decent idea on how to revitalize the team. He claims Karl isn't a Rudy Gay fan so now would be perfect time to go get him back. I propose a 3 team deal that gives us back our edge while making a dramatic change. MEM gets: Rudy Gay, Lance Stephenson, and E Moorleand. SAC gets: Jeff Green, Courtney Lee LAC gets: Tony Allen, Vince Carter Rudy gives us the true SF we have been missing since he left. He is now on a really good contract and his productivity is at an all time high. Lance gives us our edge back and his playmaking will be a huge help with Conley. Mooreland is a energetic 23yr old 6'10 PF/C- basically taller version of JaM. Karl likes running teams and Rondo already has experience with Jeff and Courtney from BOS. So those two are potentially really good fits in Karl's system. Doc wants to get rid of Lance and wanted Tony a year ago - so reuniting them seems like a logical move. Doc also knew the best way to use Tony. Vince is a veteran presence and probably can gain his outside shot back in their superior offensive system If not he is only a 2m guaranteed contract. MEM now looks like this Mike/Mario/Russ Lance/Adams Rudy/Barnes/Ennis Zbo/JaM/Martin Gasol/Mooreland/Wright *I'll repost this in trade talk too* That team has a clear upgrade in talent (Rudy>>Jeff and Lance>>Tony and Adams>Vince). Gives us multiple guys that can take over scoring in the starting lineup. Also gives us multiple options to move on from Zbo as a starter with JaM, Mooreland, and Wright. We keep our defensive edge with addition of Lance and keeping Barnes and Chalmers. Lance and Rudy are better outside shooters than Tony and Jeff so that is another upgrade. Still able to keep the fans happy by zbo staying. Any fans that were loss by Tony's trade are made up for by the return of Rudy. Rudy is also locked into his contract for another couple of years so that means we don't have to find another wing next season in FA. Lance is on a team option contract so if he doesn't workout then we can just let him go. This move also opens up minutes for Adams and Ennis for real development.
GrizzTigerFan posted a topic in Trade Talkhttp://espn.go.com/nba/tradeMachine?tradeId=n5ds6na Cam mentioned on his show that Cleveland was interested in a swap of Tony Allen for Dion Waiters. He also mentioned that FO was interested in Jameer and Harkless from ORL. MEM gets: Jameer, Harkless ORL gets: Prince, Waiters CLE gets: Tony Allen New Memphis lineup Mike/Jameer/Nick Lee/Franklin/Qpon Johnson/Harkless/Miller Zbo/Davis/Leuer Gasol/Koufos Reason for MEM: Trade saves us 1.3m so we can keep Darius Morris if we desire. Nelson contract is only 2m guaranteed next season so he saves us 5mil over keeping Prince if waived. Harkless is a 20yr old athletic SF with great size and loads of potential. He is already a credible defender and shooter. Nelson is excellent PG insurance for Conley he has been to the NBA Finals (w/CLee). Great veteran leader. Trading Tony right now is selling high and allows more PT and development for Franklin. Team has shown we are just fine with Lee and his ability to spread floor and defend is proven to be more valuable than just good defense. After this trade we will have no longer have any clear cut offensive liabilities on the team. We would have the ability to become a much more dynamic offensive team, which seems like the direction Dave is trying to take us. Reason for CLE: Waiters is basically a malcontent and poor mix with Irving. Tony brings much needed toughness and defense to that team. Cam said they desire Tony so i'll just have to trust him LOL. Reason for ORL: They are tanking but still looking to add talent. Getting the former number 4 pick in Waiters fits the bill. They are in the process of converting Oladipo to PG so this is a move to go all in on that. Prince is just there for Vet leadership and fill a SF slot and help the tank.
GrizzTigerFan posted a topic in Grizzlies Team TalkCollection of recent articles that has me thinking(dangerous!) about what is best move for Grizz FO. http://www.3sob.com/2014/january-2014/the-war-of-the-wings/13258/ "So what can we draw from all of this? These numbers that we’ve attempted to digest give us some of the story regarding the war of the wings, but alas there is much more story to be told. While definite conclusions are hard to come by, there are a few things that are for sure. 1) Courtney Lee + anybody = good things, for now at least. Keep playing Courtney Lee. 2) Courtney Lee + Tayshaun Prince = very good things. Again, for now at least. 3) Mike Miller paired with Tony Allen or Tayshaun Prince will make me shudder from here on out. 4) James Johnson and Tony Allen’s shared minutes will be something to keep an eye on." http://www.grizzlybearblues.com/features/2014/1/21/5325990/the-grind-not-taken-3-potential-paths-for-tony-allen-this-season "Three roads diverged in the Grindhouse. And one father of the Grit and the Grind, possibly looking down the path to the end of his time as a starter, or as a Grizzly entirely. The arrival of Courtney Lee has allowed for the need of the unique skill set of Tony Allen, Grizzlies starter, to come in to question. So which road should the Grizzlies front office take as they stare down the paths ahead of them?" http://www.memphisflyer.com/BeyondtheArc/archives/2014/01/28/tuesday-2-pointer-is-tony-allen-expendable "One thing is for certain: when Allen comes back, he comes back to a team that has flourished with Courtney Lee starting in his spot. Since coming to the Grizzlies from the Celtics in exchange for Jerryd Bayless, Lee has proven himself to be an excellent shooter and a solid defender, and while he's not the world class stopper that Allen is, the truth is that Allen hasn't really played up to his normal standard for much of this year, presumably because he's been fighting through so many injuries (you may remember that he missed several games in an earlier stretch due to a thigh contusion suffered in a December win over the Phoenix Suns). The Grizzlies have an awful lot of wing players now, and they all seem to have overlapping skill sets: Lee, Allen, Jamaal Franklin, Quincy Pondexter, James Johnson, and Tayshaun Prince. They don't all do the same things, but each of them has something in common with the others. It's a bit of a logjam at the 2 and 3 spots when everyone is healthy." All the articles are recommended reading and are asking the hard questions that fans of the Grindfather may not want to read. The team still has a hole at backup PG that will be addressed. So does it make sense to explore trades for tony allen to address that need and not disrupt the chemistry we have going now? Tayshaun is widely viewed as the weak link but the team is still clicking with him in starting lineup alongside Lee and the lineup numbers are fine with any combination of the current 4 man wing rotation. Tayshaun is overpaid for this season and next. However, Tony is declining too and we have him locked up for 3 more years. Is the wiser move to trade Tony and keep Tayshaun? Tony definitely has way more trade value than Prince does and already has replacements on the roster waiting behind him (Jamaal and Qpon). If he is moved for a PG then we save money and have minimal disruption to current chemistry. Something to really think about. thoughts?