Thursday, May 21, 2009

24 comments Let's Chat With Bill Simmons

There are many other things I would like to discuss today but I can't ignore a Bill Simmons chat. It's in my DNA to post something about it. I have talked about him a lot over the past month, so I may as well change the site name to "Fire Bill Simmons," which I am not going to do of course. I don't want him Peter King on the other hand, drives me crazy almost to that point.

One of my favorite things about Bill's chat is that his readers don't actually ask him questions, but they treat him like an animal where they ask him a question to get him to do a trick for them. That trick is to use his "Boston Sports Guy-pop culture reference" schtick to answer their questions. So they pose questions that are comparisons between two things and are references to previous columns or references to events that Bill discussed. That probably doesn't make sense but the SimmonsClones ask him questions to get his funny and pop culturish answers out and it validates both of their existences. One gets posted on and the other feels like a younger generation thinks he cool. Everyone wins.

Here is the low hanging fruit chat.

But Bill is all smiles again now that his beloved L.A. Clippers have won the NBA draft lottery and thus the rights to selecting Blake Griffin.

I guess that part of the introduction is supposed to be ironic but Bill does have season tickets to the Clippers home games and he would probably enjoy the Blake Griffin era.

I wish AJ's question had gotten posted. It was somewhere along the lines of why Bill Simmons complains about how he could not cheer for the Bruins because they had a cheapskate owner but he has tickets to the Clippers games, and they have one of the historically cheapest owners in the NBA. I thought it was a pretty good question.

perksa beast (boston, MA): Which was greater: Blake Griffin's pain on hearing the words"Los Angeles Clippers" or America's pain on hearing the words "Kim Bauer" presaging the annual slide of 24 into the ridiculous?

See? This is the type of question Bill gets asked that is borderline about sports, but this randomly selected reader from Boston, Massachusetts wants to hear Bill do his Boston Sports Guy-pop culture thing.

Bill Simmons: I thought Griffin did an awesome job of hiding what had to be the most disappointing and frightening moment of his life. Either that or he was heavily medicated.

Bill Simmons: By the way, I have already typed more words than Dana White did yesterday.

Clippers suck! They are the most incompetent organization in the NBA!...but I am still paying for season tickets.

Bill Simmons: It's really incredible. I am positive they will screw this up somehow even though it seems impossible to do so when they have the No. 1 pick in a draft with only 1 sure thing. You know what really jumps out at me? how freaking horrendous that Zack Randolph trade was. It was awful when it happened... now it's like 7 times more awful.

I don't want to defend the Clippers or anything, but you can't really make the bad Zach (there is no "k" in his name, you would think if Bill attended every Clippers game he would know this...yes, I know this is a nitpick) Randolph trade worse by pretending the Clippers should have known they would get the #1 pick in the next draft. The trade is bad in itself but no one really knew the Clippers would be this bad.

Chris (PA): Bill, thoughts on Rubio to Durant in 2010? I'm giddy about the thought, borderline elated, you?

I bet Chris from PA has never seen but one or two highlights of Ricky Rubio playing, he just know Bill likes him and that is good enough for him.

Bill Simmons: I have never been more torn about anything non-Celts related. On the one hand, Rubio, Durant, Green and Westbrook... wow. Those are four of my favorite incoming picks of the past 5 years, I sung all of their praises before the draft as much as anyone. All on the same team?

I bet Bill wishes the Celtics had a tight fisted owner and he could become a NBA basketball widow and then he cheer for the Thunder in good conscience. Maybe he should move to OK City and just buy season tickets to see them.

I don't recall Bill talking about Jeff Green all that much except in his trade value column and I really don't remember him talking about Green very positively before the draft. Every year he latches on to a college player and follows them during the year and then pretends like he was one of the few people singing these player's praises. He acted as if Westbrook was an absolute revelation last year, when in fact he was heavily recruited and happened to mature a little earlier than expected.

Every single one of these four players drafted is a top 5 pick so Bill is not the only one who liked is weird they could all be on the same team though.

Bill Simmons: Here's what I would do if I were the Clips GM. I'd call Sam Presti (Zombie Sonics GM) and make him the following Godfather offer...

Bill Simmons: The 2009 No. 1 overall pick, our 2011 No. 1, and our 2013 No. 1 pick...

Bill Simmons: For Kevin Durant.

Oh come on! I feel like Bill is just tempting me to type something here that loyal reader Jeremy is going to disagree with me on and it will result in 10 messages back and forth and ending with me making a pissy comment because he has inferred I am a casual fan of NBA basketball. I am being tempted to make fun of this trade...and I will. This is exactly why Bill could NEVER be a GM for a team.

Sure the Clippers need someone to build the team around and sure Durant is a great player, but he would take a team with very little talent and trade away draft picks for one player. This is not a move a team like the Clippers need to make, this is a move a team that is on the cusp of something special needs to make. I don't think the Clippers are on the cusp of something special, though I think they could be with Griffin or Durant in a few years...but why trade 3 first round picks, including the #1 pick for Kevin Durant if Griffin would be a great pick as well?

I know the counter-argument will be that the Clippers would screw up the picks anyway, but they wouldn't screw it up with Bill in charge as GM. Kevin Durant for three first round picks would be the trade and then the Clippers would win maybe 40 games next year? You say he will thrive with Baron Davis on the team but I have a hard time believing they could mesh really well and they still have Randolph on the team with his contract, which they can't move so they will be stuck with him still playing big minutes. Not to mention they won't have a first round draft pick every other year so they won't have a chance to draft new talent every other year? I just don't like this trade for the Clippers.

I am not saying Durant may not be worth 3 first round picks, because I don't know what a 2013 pick is worth, I am saying the Clippers need to get mass quantities of talent, not trade away 1st round picks. Maybe I have too much faith in GM Bill to make good picks.

Bill Simmons: And if you're the Clips, you have a franchise guy who might be ready to become a superstar next year - team him with Baron, Camby and Gordon, trade Kaman for something... that's a playoff team.

Just trade Kaman for something. Anything. Hynotize an owner into taking him, that's all you have to do.

I have to be honest, I like how Baron, Camby, Gordon, and Griffin with Randolph and Kaman coming off the bench looks. Camby can help Griffin defensively and Gordon will have a chance to get wide open jump shots if Griffin is as good as he looked in college. Ask Willie Warren what playing with Griffin is like. He basically stayed in college one more year to show that he can play without Blake Griffin on his team.

The guy they need to move is Kaman who should have value. For instance, if I were running the Clips, I'd try to deal kaman to the Nets for Bobby Simmons' expiring deal and one of their crappy 1st round picks. Good gamble for the Nets cuz Kaman could thrive on the low-post in the East,

I don't know if the Nets want to take up space in the low post for Brook Lopez to maneuver. Not saying Kaman would not work necessarily but I am saying the Nets may not accept this trade because they don't want two guys in the post getting in each other's way. This would not be a suitable "Twin Towers" situation in my opinion.

I can't understand how Bill likes Rubio so much. Not that he is not a great player, but he barely pays attention to basketball at the college level here in America, but he knows a lot about a guy who plays in a different country? I don't think so. Plus, he always gets on Chad Ford for his extreme love for foreign players who have tons of potential. That's a little bit of a contradiction.

Al Jefferson (Minnesota): Please come be my GM

Bill Simmons: Sorry Al - I've given up on your T-Wolves after they lied publicly about how many people emailed them about my GM candidacy. I don't want to work for liars. . I'm switching my focus to the Clippers and a Dunleavy coup d'etat.

Bill knows exactly how many people emailed in for his Timberwolves GM campaign and he knows the organization is lying. How you may ask? I don't know, but remember Bill also knows what goes through every person's emotions during a game, so he must know the exact amount of emails sent on his behalf to the Timberwolves President. He is all-knowing, so we can never doubt him...

Tuck (San Antonio, TX): Bill, if you're the GM of the Spurs what do you do to capitalize on the last few years of the Duncan-Ginobili era?

Bill Simmons: I would trade Parker right now for multiple pieces. I think they need to start the rebuilding process a little while keeping the Duncan/Manu foundation.

Yes, it makes sense to trade the youngest guy from the core nucleus of the team and leave the two older guys on the team. Duncan has tons of miles on him and Ginobili is not exactly young at this point...but trade the young All-NBA PG, that really makes sense.

Rock (Camden, NJ): Um, you do know Tony Parker just turned 27 on May 17, right? And that Duncan and Manu are hurt more often than LaDainian Tomlinson? Why would the Spurs build around the two older/less durable players?

Excellent question.

Bill Simmons: Good question. The answer: They can't deal Duncan for obvious reasons (you don't trade your all-time franchise guy),

Very true. That is why Kevin Garnett is still a Minnesota Timberwolves player.

I don't get why the Spurs can't trade Duncan but they can trade Parker. Parker may not have been in San Antonio as long but he means as much, if not more, to that team.

Bill basically says trade Parker because Ginobili has no trade value and you can't trade Duncan, so you trade Parker. Remember he wants to be a GM for an NBA team. There was no real good reason for trading Parker presented here.

Dave ( Chapel Hill, NC): If you were the Phoenix GM, would you keep J Rich, Nash, and Amare, and try to go back to run-and-gun, or would you try to trade them all one at a time, and rebuild around Shaq, Grant Hill, and Nash going with a 90's style team instead of the run-and-gun?

Bill Simmons: I don't see why Phoenix has to blow anything up. They won 46 games even though they lost Amare for the last 10 weeks. Why panic?

Just to recap. The Phoenix Suns are led by a 35 year old point guard, a center who is on his last legs, and a young guy coming off major surgery and this team missed the playoffs this year...they have no need to panic. San Antonio Spurs who have a younger and better point guard than the Suns, a younger (by just a little bit) center, and a shooting guard who is coming off major surgery and made the playoffs...but they need to rebuild? I realize there are other players on each team that contribute, but I just wanted to make sure I got the general idea of what Bill was suggesting here.

The biggest advantage the 2008 Celts had was their ability to go small - in 2009, they couldn't handle anyone who went small and that's how Chicago nearly beat them and Orlando did beat them. They had no answer for the Orlando lineup with Hedo-Shard-Pietrus all playing at once.

Just to be clear. The "going small" team the Magic had consisted of a 6 foot 10 guy, a 6 foot 6 guys, and a 6 foot 10 guy. I know what Bill means, but I would not exactly call that lineup small since it was still taller than the lineup the Celtics put out there most of the time.

Brent A. (Atlanta): What did the Rockets series have to do with last night's officiating. It took the Celtics 7 games to beat the 37-45 Hawks last year. You are a joke of an analyst. This is incredible how blind you are to the truth.

Great point.

Bill Simmons: brent, if you feel that way - you must hate yourself because I can't imagine why else you'd read this chat. If you remember, I killed the Celtics last spring for their pathetic performance in the hawks series.

I think we all hate ourselves.

Bill Simmons: Glad you brought this up. Adam has a great voice, but would you ever buy one of his CD's? He seems like a theater guy to me - someone who should be leading musicals. The judges loved that he took unique interpretations on songs, but sometimes "unique" is a code word for "my ears are bleeding."

I have no idea what Bill is talking about here...but if I did know, I would agree. Every song turns into a scream fest at one part and it is incredibly hard to deal with. I don't think I could listen his music on the radio...if I listened to the radio of course.

Mike ( Bethesda, MD): So Spike did a commentary on one of the greatest players of this generation and that makes him a sellout? We can't appreciate the talents of other players? You have a mancrush on a player who hasn't done anything on a team that was stolen by an entire city. And you can be so hypocritical as to insult Spike? Come on Bill you are better than that.

Man, someone let the haters out today.

Daniel (Big Lake, MN): What would you actually do to the Wolves roster if you were the GM? They have that "sweet" sixth pick!

Bill Simmons: I think this draft stinks. I like Griffin and Rubio, and after that, I like the 8-12 range where you might get Curry, Lawson or Flynn. I know those 5 guys are NBA starters. I don't know about anyone else. If I were the T-Wolves, I'd just draft Curry sixth. I don't have many certainties about the 2009 Draft, but here's one: Curry is going to make threes in the NBA and create shots for other guys.

I don't understand at all how Bill, who admittedly watched very little college basketball this year and did not enjoy it when he did, knows this is a weak draft. Maybe he is right, we will see, but I think this isn't as weak of a draft as Bill makes it out to be.

mike (boston): Bill, I'm pretty bummed out about the Celtics' prospects in the future. The Big three are aging quickly and they have not cap flexibility to add any good young pieces going forward. I feel like we're looking at another 22 year drought. Help...what would you do if you were Danny Ainge?

Bill Simmons: They're fine. They were worn down - they played 200-plus games (including 40 playoff games) in the span of 19 months and didn't have KG. Perk and Rondo will be a year better, KG will be back, they have 6 mill of expiring conttracts to deal

No other team has played that many games in such a short time span. Surely none of the Pistons teams that went to 6 straight conference finals...or the Lakers teams that three-peated at the end of the 90's and the beginning of the decade.

Jason (Reno, NV): Blake Griffin is overrated. Why do you think he's a sure thing? He can't shoot, can't dribble, and is undersized. I think he'll be able to rebound and pass, but that's it. He's Varejao or Noah, that's it. Rubio was awesome in the Olympics and I think he's got a chance to be a special player.

I know nothing about Rubio so that is why I don't comment on him. I saw him in the Olympics as well and he looked pretty good...but that doesn't make me an expert. Apparently other people feel like this gives them permission to fawn over Rubio. They saw him play in a tournament and he played well, therefore he is great. Small sample sizes are awesome.

For the record, I am down on Thabeet and don't believe he will be a great pro. I did not like DeAndre Jordan last year because he was projected in the first round and he was taken in the second round, which was actually good value. First round though? No thanks. I feel the same about Thabeet. If he got drafted mid-1st round I could get behind the selection, but otherwise I feel like his game jas big questions offensively for a lottery pick.

Bill Simmons: This year was confusing- I can't explain it. I thought March Madness was exruciatingly awful this season. Just painful. I couldn't stand it. Bad product with uninteresting players. Maybe it's like anything else - totally random and you just never know when it's going to be a good year.

I personally enjoyed the NCAA TOURNAMENT (not fucking March Madness---does Bill work for CBS? That is what they call it for marketing purposes) this year, but I like college basketball. I did not find the players uninteresting.

Bill Simmons: The Magic just needed 7 games to beat a Celtics team that had 2 scorers with dead legs, Scalabrine/Marbury/House as their bench and actually ran a game-ending play for Glen Davis. Don't start thinking Orlando is good please.

They handed the Cavs their 3rd loss at home this year last night. I don't think Orlando is that great but I may have to change my mind soon.

Of course this could be a 2001 NBA Finals situation where the 76ers came out and beat the Lakers at home and the Lakers just kind of took it and decided they were going to go ahead and beat them the next four games and not let the 76ers get their hopes up anymore. We'll see.

Bill Simmons: And probably would have if PP makes those 2 FT's with 3 mins to go in Game 6... that swung the series. Agreed. Let's all settle down on the Magic. They will be lucky to win 1 game.

They were lucky.

Dan Gerber (Kalispell, Montana): Is there a current NBA coach that you have not called an idiot? Other than PJ.

Bill Simmons: I like plenty of coaches: Sloan, Jackson, Popovich, Carlisle, Jim O'Brien, Scotty Brooks, Scott Skiles...

Michael (New York): All those coaches are white!

Clearly proof that Bill is a racist.

Bill really knocks the Orlando Magic in this chat. I know they have only won one game but he is going to look pretty bad if they beat the Cavs.

Jeremy (Boston): Who's your sleeper in this draft that every lottery GM will pass over? Dejuan Blair? He absolutely owned Thabeet this year, coming from a UConn alum, but will be picked 10-15 picks after him. Gotta love the TUP of a soft, foul-prone center with no post moves. Wait, isn't that Andrew Bynum?

Since Bill doesn't know anything about college players he just agrees with this guy about Blair being a sleeper.

My sleeper is Ty Lawson. I saw this guy for three years and he has improved every year. He is fast, he has improved his jump shot, and makes great decisions with the ball. The entire UNC team last year performed according to his lead and that was not an untalented team. If he goes above #16 then something is wrong in my book. I also think Damion James, if he goes in the second round, will be a steal.

CB (Louisville): The steal will be Earl Clark. He wont get picked til 12-20 and is more athletically gifted than just about everyone in the draft. You should have seen this kid two years ago, his improvement has been stunning. Also, mark my words, the ULTIMATE BUST is going to be James Harden. You will be using him as an example for every NBA-related column by 2011.

Bill Simmons: I'm with you on Harden. If you didn't do it consistently in college, why should I think you'll do it in the pros?

I love it when Bill talks college basketball. Earl Clark is going in the top 10. He is projected to go there. He has talent but has never been consistent with that talent and the NBA will eat that up. If anything, Earl Clark has regressed over the past couple of years. He was on the Naismith Watch List at the beginning of the year and then became the 3rd best player on that Louisville team by the end of the year. For this fucking moron from Louisville and Bill to knock Harden because he was not consistent, but like Earl Clark's potential is the very definition of a contradiction. Look at any scouting report on Clark. He is inconsistent and doesn't always get a lot out of his talent, that's what they will say. You can't knock Harden for the very thing that Earl Clark is the very definition of. Well you can, but you can't expect to be right about it.

That's all Bill had for the day. Look forward to the comments...maybe everyone will agree with everything I wrote...probably not though.


the right reverend said...

reading this chat drove me nuts. If there was any chance Bill had of becoming a GM, it was extinguished with his embarrassing answers in this chat.

Bill thinks he "knows" these college players from a few blurbs he's read in some insider articles and from his own 30 minutes of paying attention to whatever game he had a bet on in the "march madness", as I'm pretty sure Bill would have zero interest in watching these games if he didn't have money on them.

The other day he had a tweet:
"Note to TNT: It's 2009. You can't go into commercial of a Game 7 playing "Pressure" by Billy Joel. Unacceptable."

How hypocritical can you possibly be? Most of Simmons' entire Shtick is referencing garbage from the 1970s and 1980s that his target audience has absolutely no memory of.

Bengoodfella said...

I actually edited down the size of what I wrote about this chat because it was a lot bigger than what I had intended and I was doing some nitpicking. I feel like Bill knows more than I do about the NBA, and I can accept that, but I still feel like I have a firm grasp of what a good trade in the NBA is and some of his trade ideas don't make sense.

I have said several times I don't think he would make a good GM and it is because he is such a fan. He would trade 3 1st round picks for Durant, which could be Durant's value, but what does it really get the Clippers? Durant will leave when his contract expires because there is still nothing around him to build on. I don't even get why he thinks the Suns are fine but the Spurs need to start over. It seems if one needs to start over, the other should as well. Trading Parker doesn't seem to make much sense to me, mostly because there was no good reason given for it.

My overall problem with him being a GM is that he doesn't want to be an assistant GM or anything like that, he wants the top position. Screw proving himself, he thinks he deserves the top position, which I find very egotistical.

I hate it when Bill talks college basketball. He really doesn't understand what is going on. He picks these guys who are big recruits and then acts like he discovered them and starts taking credit for being on their bandwagon. I know nothing about Rubio, other than what I saw on the Olympics and some highlights. The scouting reports make him look like a great player, and he may be, but everyone is raving about him based on just that information. I don't know if this is going to be a strong draft or not, I really don't. Sure there are not top guys who look like franchise guys but we never really know.

It proved to me that Bill does not watch college basketball when he did not call that Louisville guy out on Earl Clark being inconsistent just like James Harden is.

I did not even notice the Tweet he put up the other day about the music. It is being a little bit hypocritical of complaining the NBA uses old music and he is still using the same pop culture references. He's got a lot of fans, so somebody must like them I guess. Maybe they are retro-cool or something.

I try not to argue with him too much about the NBA, but when he starts talking about college basketball it is clear to me he is not that studied on it.

Martin said...

Bill apparently doesn't follow a lot of other news about the players. Rubio is under contract with his team in Spain, but has a buyout to come to the NBA. It's a big ass buyout though, and for what Rubio would be paid as a rookie, it would be a nice increase over his 300k Euro contract right now, but maybe not so much after the buyout.

He has said that he only wants to go to certain teams, and with him being so young, and making good money as is, Memphis and Oklahoma City hold zero appeal to him. He and his agent have already said so, and unlike a college player, or Yi from China, they have leverage. He wants to play in a more diverse city, allegedly. I think Bill and some of these teams might get a rude awakening from Rubio, who really doesn't need the NBA right now.

Whatever Bill might know more about the NBA then you Ben is offset by his complete lack of common sense in figuring things out about the NBA. The Clips trade 3 #1 picks for Durant...and thus create a team with a potential superstar lingering in the 45 win range, and never able to pick up those extra guys to put them over the top...So the young guy then opts out of his contract and goes someplace else, like say the team that had those three extra picks, and wins a championship.

Bengoodfella said...

Rubio's buyout is rumored to be somewhere around 6-8 million Euros, which sounds like a lot of money in dollars as well. The NBA rules states that a team only can put $500K towards that buyout, which means Rubio will have to pay for the rest himself...combine that knowledge with the rookie salary cap and the team that drafts him is going to have to be sure they want him. Basically, this seems like a lot of work for the Grizzlies. They seem lazy like they don't want to go through all that. He is quoted as saying he wants to enter the draft but there are some variables that are going to have to be worked out before he actually can play here.

His situation is similar to Yi's in that he wants to be able to choose the team he goes to. It is different because he has leverage and doesn't have to play in the NBA.

I submit my lack of knowledge on the NBA is less than Bill's, of course he is also a writer for ESPN so that may have something to do with it, but trading all of those picks does seem a bit like treading water to me. I guess it could be argued that the Clippers would improve so those picks could be in the 20's, and they would not be great picks. I just believe a team like the Clippers need to keep those picks so Durant doesn't bail in a few years. If they traded Camby and somehow kept that #1 pick that would be a smart move, but there is no way in hell that would EVER happen. If the Thunder draft Durant, they want Griffin of course. I think any trade like that is just the organization spinning its wheels.

ivn said...

straight from the Twitter:

"Nobody will get 'Sota buzzing quite like David Kahn! Any time you can lock down a retread no-name GM, you gotta do it"

someone call the fucking wahhhmbulance for Billy.

Jeremy Conlin said...

I'm not even going to attempt the Clippers/Durant trade. It's a dumb move. Durant probably is worth 3 1st-rounders, but it's a dumb trade. I agree with you.

And my defense of his San Antonio trade: I don't necessarily thinks that Bill thinks that the Spurs need to make a move. A reader simply asked the question, and he gave an answer. If the Spurs were going to make a move, trading Parker would make the most sense, because both Ginobili and Duncan are coming off healthy issues and their value is slipping. I think a trade with Minnesota is pretty logical. Parker (and Fabricio Oberto) for Randy Foye, Rodney Carney and Shelden Williams (Minnesota would through in Brian Cardinal's contract) would make sense for both teams (they'd probably have to swap a San Antonio 1st-rounder for a Minnesota 2nd-rounder also). Carney is expendable because of Corey Brewer, and Williams is behind Jefferson, Love, and Gomes up front. Minnesota gets an elite point guard to team with Jefferson and Love, and San Antonio gets back a good point guard, plus depth at the swing spots and up front. Which team says no to that trade?

And the part about Bill's season tickets - he isn't a Clippers fan. He goes to the game and openly roots for the other team. The main reason he goes is because he likes to pay attention to stuff that you can't always get by watching the game on TV, like interactions between players and coaches, and players body language during timeouts. If he were a Clippers fan, I agree, he'd be a hypocrite.

Other than that stuff, you make some good points. I'm not sure that Rubio is a sure thing (at least not next year), I think the draft has a lot of good guards, and I agree that Simmons toots his own horn too much about how much he loves lottery picks. Guess what Bill? They're lottery picks. A lot of people like these guys.

Bengoodfella said...

I thought you might disagree with me on that Durant trade, which I don't mind obviously, I just felt like it was something that would be counterproductive since I think if they got a good coach and someone in the organization figured out what they were doing, they could have a good team with Griffin in the post. I am not a huge, huge Griffin fan...meaning I don't know if he is the franchise changing guy or not, but he is certainly going to be a great addition to that team.

IF the Spurs made a trade, I guess Parker would be the one to go. I just feel like the Spurs would not be getting a whole lot of value for him, but I admittedly don't always get NBA trades. I liked Rodney Carney coming out of college, as much as I can like someone coming from Memphis, and I guess the sum of the parts would make sense in the long term for the Spurs. I have a soft spot (defensively) for Shelden Williams, simply because I think he was drafted too high for his skill level...based completely on coming from Duke. I thought Boozer was 5 times more ready when he left Duke and he was only taken in the second round and did not even stay all four years. I have never been a big Williams fan but I think he could fit in with the Spurs.

I don't think Bill is a hypocrite for going to the Clippers games and having season tickets. I was comparing it to the Bruins situation, which if he cheers for the other team is not analogous to the Bruins situation.

He does drive me crazy when he talks college basketball though. I may be nitpicking Rubio, and I am not even sure he plays in the NBA next year due to the buyout situation, but the questions about him are apparently about his athleticism and his jump shot. I am not sure he would not be better served to spend a couple more years working on his jumper and learning a little more before he makes the jump to the NBA. I don't really care too much about the athleticism but if he gets picked high there is going to be a lot of expectations on him and I would hate for him to fail under those expectations when he wasn't ready quite yet. The scouting reports I have read seem very pleased with his potential though.

As far as Earl Clark goes compared to James Harden...and I hope this makes sense. I feel like they have two completely different types of inconsistencies. This is purely my opinion of course. Clark tends just look out of it when he is on the court at times. I think he is a victim of expectations in that many people expected him to do more than he did with his skill set. He did not make the leap everyone expected him to make. His inconsistency relates to his skill set and what is expected of him. I see him as more of a #3 guy on a playoff team, maybe a #2 guy on a bad team as a ceiling. That's not so bad, but when comparing him to Harden I see Harden as a potential franchise guy as his ceiling, with a #2 guy on a playoff team as a floor. His problem is not inconsistency but that he defers to his teammates way too much. That's what make his game so frustrating is that he doesn't always look for his own shot when he should. I don't know if he can takeover a game like a franchise guy needs to.

I am done rambling, but I like Earl Clark's skill set as a player, but I feel like Harden is going to be able to be more consistent at the NBA level, while Clark could frustrate everyone with just showing flashes. I see Clark as Marvin Williams with Harden as a (not that his game is like his) Rip Hamilton type.

ivn said...

so Billy "divorced" the Bruins for not spending loads of money but he'll annually give thousands of dollars to this man.


ivn said...

aw crap that's supposed to be "denies"

Bengoodfella said...

Yeah, Jeremy said in the comments he gives money to the Clippers to cheer against them, which knowing Bill he probably does. Still, I don't believe he should support the team that obviously hates its fans, but I guess he loves the NBA that much. I would be impressed if he got season tickets to the Bruins games and attended them. I would shut up about being a fair weather fan then.

Is it bad that I constantly laugh at the Tommy impression. I think it is great.

Martin said...

Well, Bill didn't root for the other team all the time. He was a Clippers man when Brand was having his big year and they had Sam "Big Balls" Cassell "coaching" the team.

Yeah, and Donald Sterling is a man with a Boston heart ain't he?

Bengoodfella said...

Yeah, I think once things started to turn sour for the Clips, after Cassell/Brand left and the team started struggling Bill started rooting against them. Wait, that sounds like something else. Can you be a fair weather fan for a team you don't even like?

I am kidding of course, though I do remember him enjoying Cassell on the court. I guess when you are wealthy you can pay money for tickets to see a team you don't like that much.

Fred Trigger said...

Ivn, nice one.

Ben, I'm in the same boat, but for some reason its the "NO ONE DENIES THIS!" that always makes me crack up. I also like when they throw in things like "(cranks Creed album all the way up)", or "(puts hoodie over head and walks around menancingly)". Larry B missed out on these with his Simmons chat wrap, and I was sorely disappointed.

Word: zoomobil

Chris W said...


Also, it's not like OKC is just guaranteed to give up their franchise player because Bill wants to trade for him.

"Hey will you trade us Durant for the #1 pick this year?"


"What if I throw in the #1 pick next year?"


"Ok. The #1 pick this year! The #1 pick next year! And the #1 pick in 2011!"


Trades don't often get made, and when they do it's ones you don't expect. You can't just say "well 3 draft picks are worth Durant, so they will give me him!"

AJ said...

First of all, Bill is a Clippers fan, stop fooling yourself. No one buys 15K tickets to cheer for the other team, and if they did, well then they have other issues (oh wait...). He even wrote a puff piece on Baron Davis. And if he wasn't a Clippers fan, why does he refer to them as "we"? If he wanted to see a good team AND cheer against someone, he would own Lakers tickets. He already hates the Lakers, so if he wanted to buy tickets just to cheer against a team, wouldn't it seem pretty clear that he would choose the Lakers??????

Second, the Spurs trading Parker would be the worst trade they could ever make. Why would you trade a top 3 PG that is still young? You wouldn't. And the correct answer to that Spurs question is this...You don't do anything. You continue to do exactly what you have been doing for the past decade. When healthy that team is good enough to beat anyone.

I don't get why people are talking about how upset Blake must be to have seen the Clippers get the first choice. Would it have been better for Washington to win that? Would he have been more excited? The Kings? Doubtful.

Does anyone else find it funny that Bill rips on the Magic, saying they aren't a good team (hey, we all already knew that), yet the Celtics lost to them? To me, this is more of a rip on Boston then Orlando. And he talks about who Boston had coming off the bench...yet fails to mention who Orlando had coming off the bench (Johnson, Borret, Battie) and who they started at PG (JJ!!! seriously).

I'm just going to throw this out there and you can come up with your own conclussions (remember, the spurs are getting old, and they should trade their best player now...yet Boston will be fine):

KG - 33 years old (with injury issues)
Pierce - 31 years old
Allen - 31 years old (with injury issues)

Duncan - 33 years old (with injury issues)
Manu - 31 years old (with injury issues)
Parker - 27 years old

Bengoodfella said...

That Tommy stuff kills me and my favorite part is when he does the stuff like (puts a dip of Skoal in his mouth) and things like that. It's the same skit over and over and yet everytime I laugh at it.

Chris, I do think that is a part of the NBA trade scene that Bill might miss. He may have some good ideas but he has to get someone else to agree with him on those ideas at another organization and that may be hard to do. For example, if he offers that trade for Durant and then it leaks to the press, there is going to be a field day with writers talking about the Clippers are trying to trade the #1 pick for Durant. In which case the OK City fans would rebel. It may not be a big deal, but as we have seen previously, if you try to trade a player and it gets out then there are ramifications if the trade doesn't go through. He has to get another GM to think like he does in a trade and I think OK City is busy building a nucleus with the players they have and would not want to start over with Griffin.

That's a good point AJ if he wanted to root against a team it would be the Lakers. I am not going to defend him at all, but I would imagine Lakers tickets are much more expensive than Clippers tickets, so maybe he did not want to spend all that money? I don't know really. He may be a little bit of a Clippers fan at heart.

Yeah, I think it would be stupid for the Spurs to trade Parker as well and I really don't think they are going to. He does have the most trade value among the three but I just don't see them doing that.

Griffin should be very upset according to Bill because he thinks the Clippers are the place where players go to die but I agree with you, I would much rather go there than to the Kings or the Grizzlies. I don't care how bad the coaching is with the Clippers, the Kings and Grizzlies are in a smaller market and still have shitty management and coaching. I realize Dunleavy is inept and Sterling is a bad owner but at least you have a fighting chance in LA. Good players go to die in Memphis and Sacramento (until they get traded).

Bill never expected the Celtics to beat the Magic this year because of the injury to Garnett and how many games they had played. That is his reasoning for expecting them to lose, it still doesn't completely explain why he knocks the Magic so much really. They played well enough to beat the Celtics to beat them in 6 games and won 2 games on the Celtics home court. I think it may be a little sour grapes. I would not be knocking them personally but you know he always gets a little bitter about some things like that. (i.e. Peyton Manning winning a Super Bowl) Don't make fun of J.J. Redick either, he can't help that NBA GM's were the only ones who could not tell he had no ability to create his own shot. He should have gone in the late first round but didn't...(crying violently) it's not his fault!

I realized the parallel between the Spurs and the Celtics when Bill wrote that. I indeed think both groups have a few more years together. I think Garnett (which means Duncan does too in my opinion) still has trade value and that is why I think if in the situation given to Bill I would try to trade the other two before Parker. I don't know if that would happen or not but it would be interesting to see.

Anonymous said...

Two part mailbag out today. This guy is AWFUL. I just about threw my computer when I read this:

Q: I'm liking your theory that sports teams should just hire really smart guys more and more. This guy turned Fiat around despite never running an auto company before. Now they're buying Chrysler, who had hired Robert Nardelli (the Mike Dunleavy of CEOs). Can we just hire the top students from MIT to run the newspaper business now?
--Sam, Atlanta

SG: Maybe this will be part of my pitch to take over the Clippers: "If an outsider could turn Fiat around, an outsider could turn the Clippers around!"

It's like the guy thinks he's Good Will Hunting of the sporting world. He goes to some sports stats convention at MIT and is convinced he's now the most qualified person to solve every team's problems. Can next year's convention really just be an intervention where folks tell Bill that's he's just not that smart?

AJ said...

Oh no...a mailbag and I'm heading home from work now...

Guess I'll "read" it on monday! Enjoy the holiday weekend everyone!

Bengoodfella said...

I haven't read the mailbag yet but I saw that question and had the same reaction. It's not that I don't think he could not get involved with the NBA at a certain point but he wants to be the GM of the team immediately. He is not a MIT guy and I know he says he has friends who are GM's of teams who say it is about putting out fires and things like that, but I still think there is more to it. He does think after that convention that he could run a team. After that is when this all started and became a stat geek and thinks he can run a team.

I am not doubting his knowledge of the NBA, I am doubting his ability to run a team effectively. I don't subscribe to the "what do we have to lose" thought process. If they want an outsider, hire a guy who has run something somewhere successfully and not a guy who writes a sports column and is a super fan. I am not against the outsider perspective on this, but I would think it would make sense to hire someone who has experience running something other than a four person household.

I don't know if I have the energy to even read this mailbag AJ, I really don't, much less write about it. There's been a lot of Simmons lately. Have a good weekend too and I am sure we will be hearing from you at some point.

Martin said...

Chris W. you hit it on the head, as Bill is like the guys who call into the local post game shows and say "I think we should go to the Cards and offer them Loney and DeWitt for Pujols. They'd get younger, and we'd get the power hitter we need till Manny's suspension is over."
Just because Bill wants to make a trade doesn't mean that the other teams wants to also.

Bill doesn't have any idea what a GM in any sport deals with, he just wants to be the "trading and draft choice guy" sort of like a Player Personal Guru or something. him negotiating contracts, dealing with agents, that whole thing would be a joke.

I will give him props on an idea he had years ago, which is that teams almost need to hire a non-organization guy who is a fan of the team to run some ideas by. His "VP of Common Sense". Someone who doesn't have a vested intrest in making themselves look good in the organization who can go "Really? WTF are you guys thinking? " As sometimes I think sports teams, and all organizations get into group think and bad ideas just steam roll their way to epicly bad conclusions.

Chris W said...

Exactly Martin! That's exactly what I wanted to say. He's a sports radio caller.

The kind of guy who goes "Why don't the Packers trade AJ Hawk and Ryan Grant for Adrian Peterson?"

And the host goes "That's not going to happen"

And the caller goes "Tell me one reason why that deal can't happen--it makes sense for both teams!"

Bengoodfella said...

I hate those guys who call into the radio shows like that. They just start thinking of trades off the top of their heads.

I used to like the VP of Common Sense idea Bill had and until I saw some of the ideas he has for teams he would GM I am not sure I would nominate him for the position. I can't tell you how much I hate those radio callers though.

I think I could advocate Bill being an Assistant or starting off at a different point and proving he could do the job first. Of course, then he would stop writing and I would have nothing to do.

Martin said...

Yeah, the concept of Bill being teh VP of Common Sense is ludicrous. the basic idea though does have some merit. It's why companies bring in outside consultants for various things. I do think some basketball teams could really use that position, a guy who can say "Dudes, step back. Luke Walton, 3 years 21 million? You can't find another Luke Walton out there for less?"

Bengoodfella said...

I think they may call it something else rather than VP of Common Sense, but it could make sense for them to bring someone in who is neutral to help them make decisions. It would certainly stop many of the signings that have occurred including anything involving Jerome James, Jared Jeffries, and plenty of others like that.

I don't know Bill could do that or not. I think he may not be neutral or unbiased enough to do it.

Basically this person would help teams like the Knicks not make stupid decisions.