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  1. #121
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    Quote Originally Posted by LEvine View Post
    I worry that he's slow to process things. It kind of explains why he can be so good with the ball in his hands or if he's really focusing on his man with the ball. But a guy with his measurables and sheer athleticism, should be racking up steals, blocks and deflections. Look at early Giannis - he clearly had no idea what he was doing on the floor, but he was still often disruptive as hell.

    With Wiggins, he's almost never in a defensive stance, he seems to get stuck in "no man's land" far too often - not fully committing to doubling, but being too far away from his man to recover, he seems unaware of a lot of rebounds around him, and he doesn't seem to anticipate where his teammates will be (which really hurts his passing).

    Also agree with LA that Zach plays HARD. Like all the time. I believe tracking numbers show, he runs "a farther distance" game in and game out than any other player, and its been really noticeable the past few weeks how much he's trying at defense. The problem is, he plays HARD, but not SMART. He's a chicken with his head cut off a lot of the time. Its like he knows he's supposed to do something, but he has no idea what it is he's supposed to do.
    "I worry that he's slow to process things."

    Is this a Wolves thing. I mean Zach, Bjelly, Wigs, Payne and even Gorgui!Sheesh. I can hear LA33 right now thinking, Nick, we're young. I'm getting it.

  2. #122
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    Quote Originally Posted by LA_33 View Post
    I mean, people are already calling him a bust, at age 21, so the label could certainly end up sticking if he falls short of all-star level. But it still seems very likely, IMO, that he's better than Rudy Gay long-term, at least looking at Rudy "on average"; he had a few solid seasons, but was mostly similar to/worse than Wiggins has been (again before Drew turns 22), and Rudy's biggest failing was a different, more problematic (IMO) type of effort/caring/efficiency issue than Drew's periodic coasting.
    Why "very likely"? Rudy Gay is often singled out as the best example of a one-dimensional scorer. And yet, Wiggins is a notch below him on "do-stuff" stats. At year 3, Rudy has him beat by 1.4 rebounds, .4 steals, and .3 blocks (Wiggins leads in assists), while Rudy is also ahead in 3P%, eFG%, TRB%, BPM, and VORP. Further, Wiggins isn't showing much improvement on many things. I am not just looking at numbers, I also agree with Levine's eye-ball take. I wouldn't call it "periodic coasting." It's far more consistent than that. If he cannot get into a proper stance despite constant reminding by the coach, then I am not sure it's ever going to click for him.

  3. #123
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    Quote Originally Posted by ECA19 View Post
    Where do you think I really messed up? Lebron was a last second flip with Duncan, BTW.
    That's a good list! Regarding Wiggins, I wouldn't put him above Robinson, Martin, Coleman, or even Bogut. Right now, I would clump in around Smith and Ellison.

  4. #124
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    Quote Originally Posted by jbowyer View Post
    Why "very likely"? Rudy Gay is often singled out as the best example of a one-dimensional scorer. And yet, Wiggins is a notch below him on "do-stuff" stats. At year 3, Rudy has him beat by 1.4 rebounds, .4 steals, and .3 blocks (Wiggins leads in assists), while Rudy is also ahead in 3P%, eFG%, TRB%, BPM, and VORP. Further, Wiggins isn't showing much improvement on many things. I am not just looking at numbers, I also agree with Levine's eye-ball take. I wouldn't call it "periodic coasting." It's far more consistent than that. If he cannot get into a proper stance despite constant reminding by the coach, then I am not sure it's ever going to click for him.
    If I remember correctly, Rudy has mostly "played down" to his size (i.e. as a SF when he has the size to play PF), while Wiggins has been "played up" for the majority of his time in the NBA. It is harder for smaller guys to earn rebounds when they are paired against bigger guys. Especially when there are an abundance of SFs on other teams that have the size to play PF. Not that I disagree overall with what you are saying, but when you are constantly a good inch or 3 smaller than the guy defending you, it is difficult to get those "do-stuff" stats consistently.

    I will also say that Wiggins' one-on-one defense is actually a fairly large strength for him (relatively speaking for defense), while Rudy has never really been one to excel there. Wiggins' opposing PER stats from 82games.com is pretty darn impressive (15.0 PER for opposing SFs is his worst stat there with a smothering 5.3 from opposing SGs on limited sample size), and it is probably a part of the reason his steals and blocks are down; he drives the ball away from the guy he is defending. Add in that he is a pretty lousy team defender, and he won't be getting extra steals/blocks by being a Rubio-esque disrupter. Wiggins does need to improve his percentages, and take same "better shots" at times. He does "do the Kobe" a little bit too much for my tastes.

  5. #125
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    Quote Originally Posted by TJ Styles View Post
    If I remember correctly, Rudy has mostly "played down" to his size (i.e. as a SF when he has the size to play PF), while Wiggins has been "played up" for the majority of his time in the NBA. It is harder for smaller guys to earn rebounds when they are paired against bigger guys. Especially when there are an abundance of SFs on other teams that have the size to play PF. Not that I disagree overall with what you are saying, but when you are constantly a good inch or 3 smaller than the guy defending you, it is difficult to get those "do-stuff" stats consistently.

    I will also say that Wiggins' one-on-one defense is actually a fairly large strength for him (relatively speaking for defense), while Rudy has never really been one to excel there. Wiggins' opposing PER stats from 82games.com is pretty darn impressive (15.0 PER for opposing SFs is his worst stat there with a smothering 5.3 from opposing SGs on limited sample size), and it is probably a part of the reason his steals and blocks are down; he drives the ball away from the guy he is defending. Add in that he is a pretty lousy team defender, and he won't be getting extra steals/blocks by being a Rubio-esque disrupter. Wiggins does need to improve his percentages, and take same "better shots" at times. He does "do the Kobe" a little bit too much for my tastes.
    I am noticing that Wiggins and Gay are both actually listed both at BBallRef and in DraftExpress as being 6'8". However, Gay is listed in both areas has having 20+ pounds on Wiggins and DraftExpress has Gay with a 3" longer wingspan. So, I retract the idea that Rudy has been "playing down" to his size, but I do definitely still believe that Wiggins is best served at the SG position, which I feel would definitely help him in the "do stuff" stats department.

  6. #126
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    Quote Originally Posted by TJ Styles View Post
    If I remember correctly, Rudy has mostly "played down" to his size (i.e. as a SF when he has the size to play PF), while Wiggins has been "played up" for the majority of his time in the NBA. It is harder for smaller guys to earn rebounds when they are paired against bigger guys. Especially when there are an abundance of SFs on other teams that have the size to play PF. Not that I disagree overall with what you are saying, but when you are constantly a good inch or 3 smaller than the guy defending you, it is difficult to get those "do-stuff" stats consistently.
    Rudy and Wiggins are the same height, but Rudy came in 20+ pounds heavier. I believe Rudy has always been a SF, which is his natural position. Maybe Wiggins will shine more at SG, but I am not sure if his wing position is the issue. Even at his current weight, his athleticism at SF should allow him to block more shots and grab more boards. For whatever reason (e.g. slow processing time, lack of motor, mental block), he is not using his leaping ability for those things. He could get better, I guess, but I wouldn't count on it. It is a little discouraging that a player who will likely earn $20 million will require his team to work around his weaknesses. Essentially, Zach will likely not work on this team long-term. There is no reason that a 6'8" player with huge leaping ability cannot effectively play SF.

  7. #127
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    Its also not going to matter where we put him unless we get a legit SF that is both an offensive and defensive threat.

    Otherwise teams will just continue to put their better wing defender on Drew, and he'll be stuck trying to check the better wing for the opponent.

  8. #128
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    Quote Originally Posted by LEvine View Post
    Its also not going to matter where we put him unless we get a legit SF that is both an offensive and defensive threat.

    Otherwise teams will just continue to put their better wing defender on Drew, and he'll be stuck trying to check the better wing for the opponent.
    I would expect that a wing who commands $20 million is going to draw the better wing defender. Getting a legit two-way SF is no small task, especially if we have Towns and Wiggins both over $20 million. Wiggins' limitations are a huge problem with roster construction.

  9. #129
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    Quote Originally Posted by jbowyer View Post
    I would expect that a wing who commands $20 million is going to draw the better wing defender. Getting a legit two-way SF is no small task, especially if we have Towns and Wiggins both over $20 million. Wiggins' limitations are a huge problem with roster construction.
    Depends on the SF. If its a guy like Bazz or Rush, the other team can guard him with their SG. If we get someone with some size (even if they're just an OK scorer), teams may have to put their bigger wing on him.

  10. #130
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    Quote Originally Posted by LEvine View Post
    Depends on the SF. If its a guy like Bazz or Rush, the other team can guard him with their SG. If we get someone with some size (even if they're just an OK scorer), teams may have to put their bigger wing on him.
    I am on board with getting a bigger wing, but we desperately need such a player in part because Wiggins is so passive. Yeah, it's also partly his weight and partly his youth, but Wiggins should be able to thrive at either wing position given his athleticism and measurables.

    If indeed Wiggins can only function well at SG, then the writing is on the wall with Zach. In the long-term, Zach's injury might actually help us. We can re-sign him to a reasonable contract, and then eventually deal him. There would be a lot of takers.

    The wiser route might be to keep Zach and then deal Wiggins in an attempt to get that two-way SF.

  11. #131
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    Quote Originally Posted by LEvine View Post
    Depends on the SF. If its a guy like Bazz or Rush, the other team can guard him with their SG. If we get someone with some size (even if they're just an OK scorer), teams may have to put their bigger wing on him.
    Long term I think Wiggins is best suited as a SG but the SF needs to have some ability to be a playmaker, mainly a passer. That's the biggest reason why I'm on board with Miles Bridges in the draft. He can play 4 in some small ball lineups but he has a playmaker game. I'm not sure about his defense at this point but he has a solid build. Stanley Johnson is another name I think about if he ever comes available on a discount from Detroit. Maybe that's even a Zach trade down the road. I don't know if Johnson is the playmaker that Bridges can be though.
    Last edited by Cory; 02-06-2017 at 09:27 PM.

  12. #132
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    Quote Originally Posted by jbowyer View Post
    Why "very likely"? Rudy Gay is often singled out as the best example of a one-dimensional scorer. And yet, Wiggins is a notch below him on "do-stuff" stats. At year 3, Rudy has him beat by 1.4 rebounds, .4 steals, and .3 blocks (Wiggins leads in assists), while Rudy is also ahead in 3P%, eFG%, TRB%, BPM, and VORP. Further, Wiggins isn't showing much improvement on many things. I am not just looking at numbers, I also agree with Levine's eye-ball take. I wouldn't call it "periodic coasting." It's far more consistent than that. If he cannot get into a proper stance despite constant reminding by the coach, then I am not sure it's ever going to click for him.
    I might be wrong about the growth I expect from Wiggins, which is why I was very clear that the "very likely" was my opinion. But that opinion, strictly in terms of comparing these two guys, is based on a few things.

    First, i fundamentally reject the seeming assumption that "do stuff" production is how we have to evaluate whether a player is good, and the corresponding characterization that high-volume scoring is somehow bad. Inefficient volume scoring can be a negative (back to that, from a slightly different angle, in a bit) but Wiggins really isn't particularly inefficient, especially given the usage he's carried the past couple years, and yes, broken record, his age.

    I think rebounding, in particular (and as I've argued before) is highly over-rated as an individual stat. Funtionally, team rebounding is important, but it's much less important which individual player is actually being credited with those rebounds, and the Wolves have generally been fine from a team rebounding perspective when Wiggins has played. If his individual lack of rebounding isn't impacting the team's collective rebounding, i'm not going to be particularly concerned about it.

    In that context, I just don't think those relatively minor differences in rebounding/steals/blocks/assists have that big a bearing on a comparison between these two players.

    Given that most of the impact (for good or bad) that both of them make is as scorers, I think it makes much more sense to focus the comparison there. In that context, I think Wiggins is better than Gay in their respective 3rd years (and yes, Drew is also 6 months younger). He draws significantly more FTs, has a higher TS% in spite of a higher usage-rate (and higher usage essentially always corresponds with decreased efficiency), and the three has become a bigger, more effective part of his game each year, which is an important, and very positive, trend. Gay also turned the ball over MUCH more, again in spite of a lower usage-rate. When Rudy's usage bumped up above 27, where Wiggins has already been since age-20, Gay got significantly less efficient, and worse.

    So I think Wiggins is likely to keep growing/improving as an offense player, including as a (secondary) playmaker for others as he's improved his handle, vision, and assist-rate each year. While Rudy actually got worse (more selfish, less effective) later in his career.

    That leads me to my last point, which is pretty much completely subjective, but I think very important. Rudy has always struck me as selfish, and someone who cared more about his individual numbers than about winning games. As I said, his usage eventually climbed to above 27, which seems to have been too high for his skillset and efficiency, and both of the times he was traded he tried to do even more with his new teams, while the teams he left got better. Wiggins has been significant more effective offensively at those above-27 usage levels, despite reaching that level at 20-21, while Gay didn't do it until he should have been in his prime, at age 26-28.

    More subjectively, but critically, I've just never gotten the sense from Wiggins that he cares about his own numbers more than he cares about the team winning. I get the sense he's taken on the level of usage he has because he's crazy talented and his coaches have wanted him to take on that level of offensive burden, but that he's mostly a laid-back, relatively care-free guy, who would be perfectly fine taking on a smaller offensive role if his coaches/teammates asked him to.

    That's the difference in attitude I was trying to get at in my previous comparison post, an attitude that I think has been problematic in Rudy's case, but that I don't think Wiggins shares, and makes it more likely that Wiggins will keep growing, at least offensively, and that even if he doesn't he's more likely to be willing to accept a smaller role than Gay was, which is a big point in Wiggins's favor in my mind.

  13. #133
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    Quote Originally Posted by LA_33 View Post
    I might be wrong about the growth I expect from Wiggins, which is why I was very clear that the "very likely" was my opinion. But that opinion, strictly in terms of comparing these two guys, is based on a few things.

    First, i fundamentally reject the seeming assumption that "do stuff" production is how we have to evaluate whether a player is good, and the corresponding characterization that high-volume scoring is somehow bad. Inefficient volume scoring can be a negative (back to that, from a slightly different angle, in a bit) but Wiggins really isn't particularly inefficient, especially given the usage he's carried the past couple years, and yes, broken record, his age.

    I think rebounding, in particular (and as I've argued before) is highly over-rated as an individual stat. Funtionally, team rebounding is important, but it's much less important which individual player is actually being credited with those rebounds, and the Wolves have generally been fine from a team rebounding perspective when Wiggins has played. If his individual lack of rebounding isn't impacting the team's collective rebounding, i'm not going to be particularly concerned about it.
    By "doing stuff", I don't just mean adding to his stats. I mean doing the other things necessary to actually help the team win besides scoring, whatever those might be depending on the particular game. High-volume scorers, if they don't have other strengths, often don't help win games, unless they are extremely efficient (and Wiggins is not). If not rebounding, then weak-side defense or a timely steal. If not a block, then tough one-on-one defense to help close out a tight game. I just don't consistently see those things from Wiggins. I agree that team rebounding is more important, but it's irritating to see Wiggins planted on the ground while there's a contested rebound to be had. His weak advanced stats are consistent with the eye-test. His improved scoring doesn't make up for the other (mostly weak) parts of his game. If we could keep him for $15 million, then I could overlook these things and be content with his role as a semi-efficient volume scorer. But it's very likely we're going to offer him $25 million. I really don't expect him to live up to that contract, based on where he is now and the rarity of players to make huge jumps after their third years.


    Quote Originally Posted by LA_33 View Post
    More subjectively, but critically, I've just never gotten the sense from Wiggins that he cares about his own numbers more than he cares about the team winning. I get the sense he's taken on the level of usage he has because he's crazy talented and his coaches have wanted him to take on that level of offensive burden, but that he's mostly a laid-back, relatively care-free guy, who would be perfectly fine taking on a smaller offensive role if his coaches/teammates asked him to.

    That's the difference in attitude I was trying to get at in my previous comparison post, an attitude that I think has been problematic in Rudy's case, but that I don't think Wiggins shares, and makes it more likely that Wiggins will keep growing, at least offensively, and that even if he doesn't he's more likely to be willing to accept a smaller role than Gay was, which is a big point in Wiggins's favor in my mind.
    I don't want to quibble about who's better - current Wiggins or third year Gay. It's concerning enough that there's a debate to be had on this. Certainly, I would much rather have a player with a good attitude, but Wiggins also strikes me as the kind of guy who constantly needs reminding and prodding. That must get annoying for Thibs, who must wonder (as do I) if that trait can actually be corrected. If that passive trait is innately the way he plays, an extension of who he is as a person, then it's less likely it can be changed substantially. That's my fear with him and why I am projecting him lower than some others.

    Then again, you could be right. Maybe Wiggins will figure it out. It's concerning though that he came into the league with questions about his motor, and these concerns still plague him. His progression would have to be an outlier to make it worth paying him $25 million.
    Last edited by jbowyer; 02-07-2017 at 05:02 AM.

  14. #134
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    Quote Originally Posted by jbowyer View Post
    By "doing stuff", I don't just mean adding to his stats. I mean doing the other things necessary to actually help the team win besides scoring, whatever those might be depending on the particular game. High-volume scorers, if they don't have other strengths, often don't help win games, unless they are extremely efficient (and Wiggins is not). If not rebounding, then weak-side defense or a timely steal. If not a block, then tough one-on-one defense to help close out a tight game. I just don't consistently see those things from Wiggins. I agree that team rebounding is more important, but it's irritating to see Wiggins planted on the ground while there's a contested rebound to be had. His weak advanced stats are consistent with the eye-test. His improved scoring doesn't make up for the other (mostly weak) parts of his game. If we could keep him for $15 million, then I could overlook these things and be content with his role as a semi-efficient volume scorer. But it's very likely we're going to offer him $25 million. I really don't expect him to live up to that contract, based on where he is now and the rarity of players to make huge jumps after their third years.
    Again, your assumption in bold is taken as an absolute truth by a lot of people, and that's the core assumption I'm questioning. A team needs all of the "do-stuff" production, but every good team also need multiple high-quality scoring threats, and the later truth (I guess "truth" is "IMO" there, but I think that's an absolute given) seems to be consistently downplayed by a lot of people who focus on value, combined-production advanced stats, and the like.

    I also think Wiggins is actually more efficient already than a lot of people claim (or maybe more correctly, I think the "efficiency threshold" people seem to use is way too high, because getting nightly bulk scoring from a few guys, is actually more valuable/better than assuming that a team can spread the scoring around and everyone can have a lower usage and thus a higher efficiency; that happens for lower-usage guys, IMO, largely because they're not taking the shots on the toughest possessions, because the "volume scorers" are taking more shots for their teams, including more of the shots on possessions where a really good/open/efficient shot doesn't present itself.

    But back to Wiggins specifically, he has a very low TO rate for a guy with his usage, he draws fouls, and in terms of a growth sign, as I said his volume and effectiveness form three have risen every year, and if that trend continues (and I don't see why it wouldn't) he seems likely to end up being very efficient for a guy with the type of usage he's already had for two seasons now. 21 year-olds get better, just like Rudy Gay did at age 24-25. Especially on D, where I think Wiggins is already less-awful than many people seem to; that's an area where almost everyone is better when they're older/more experienced than they are when they're 21 and/or 2.5 years into their NBA. So I fully expect at least moderate improvement defensively, because unless guys have significant physical shortcomings (which Wiggins obviously doesn't), that's my blanket expectation for everyone (I expect similar improvement from LaVine, FWIW, although I also think he's starting out WELL behind Wiggins in that regard).

    But relating that to his likely salary, its fine and good if you'd prefer to spend money on all-around production, but: A) that's not how the NBA's actual salary market tends to work; defense and "do stuff" doesn't really get NBA perimeter players paid. Volume scoring, especially at reasonable efficiency, does; and B) if you're not willing to pay Wiggins what the market is going to dictate for his scoring ability (and his remaining upside, of which I think everyone can agree there is still some, even if the amount is open to plenty of debate), where are you getting similar volume-scoring in a guy who's a better all-around player? I don't think that's Zach, either, so you're probably still looking for a legit, well-rounded perimeter star scorer from the outside, and those guys are really rare, and will be increasingly hard to obtain under the forthcoming CBA. You can get complementary guys to provide the other "winning plays"/"do stuff" production, very often without paying huge money, but high-volume scorers are almost always expensive.

    In that context, I think you can build a REALLY good team including a 1st-tier max for Wiggins, even if he doesn't even become the all-around guy everyone would presumably prefer to have in that perimeter volume scorer role/salary slot, especially given the presence of Towns. In the end, I think you're going to pay someone huge money to provide the kind of scoring that Wiggins can already give you at 21, so part of the question in terms of what you're willing to pay Wiggins comes down to how and where you're getting someone to fill that role who is better (more well-rounded, less of a space cadet, etc. than he is/reasonably projects to be.

    I don't want to quibble about who's better - current Wiggins or third year Gay. It's concerning enough that there's a debate to be had on this. Certainly, I would much rather have a player with a good attitude, but Wiggins also strikes me as the kind of guy who constantly needs reminding and prodding. That must get annoying for Thibs, who must wonder (as do I) if that trait can actually be corrected. If that passive trait is innately the way he plays, an extension of who he is as a person, then it's less likely it can be changed substantially. That's my fear with him and why I am projecting him lower than some others.

    Then again, you could be right. Maybe Wiggins will figure it out. It's concerning though that he came into the league with questions about his motor, and these concerns still plague him. His progression would have to be an outlier to make it worth paying him $25 million.
    Again, my point about the attitudes is that I think while it might be annoying to Thibs at timse, the possibility that Wiggins will always need a little more external motivation than other guys with his talent can still be dealt with by constantly pushing him to provide that motivation. While an attitude like Rudy's, seemingly being internally motivated to be more aggressive, but for selfish reasons that have frequently been at odds with team success, is a much bigger problem, and harder to deal with. I think if Gay had a different attitude, even the kind of attitude you're decrying in Wiggins, he would have been significantly more effective as an NBA player, because he's really talented (just like Wiggins is) and Rudy DID show growth in many areas well into his late-20s prime years, he was just held back by leveraging that growth in self-interested, team-negative ways.

    As for the money, the likely max contract request that's going to come from Wiggins could absolutely end up being an overpay. But I'm really not sure how damaging that overpay would ultimately be, even if he never approaches All-star good and lives up to it (which I still definitely think is a real possibility). That's because the Wolves seem poised to get surplus value from a max deal to Towns, including the rebounding and rim protection that teams sometimes have to pay a little too much for when they don't have it from a guy who's also max-good offensively (Bismack Biyombo got like $20m annually, remember, to come off the bench for the Magic).

    As I said above, in general, the NBA's actual salary market requires teams to use a max slot to get a secondary high-volume scorer, even at the level/efficiency that Wiggins is already scoring at now, at age 21 (an age from which he is likely to get better, because most players that age do, often in the areas where they're best to start with, which for Wiggins is effective volume scoring). I don't think he necessarily even needs to make an outlier-type improvement to pretty clearly have a role/skillset that the NBA pays very well. You're free to think that's a market inefficiency, but that also doesn't mean it's not the market.

    So again, as I said above, if they're/you're unwilling to give that money/role to Wiggins, where are they getting the guy they/you ARE willing to use in that way, and pay for that role? I think LaVine is even less likely to justify that kind of money than Wiggins is, and the draft range they're in could produce that type of player, but even in this strong draft that's not particularly likely, IMO.

    If the argument is that they need to trade Wiggins to get a guy who's already established at something like that level, I'm open to that. But aligning that trade acquisition with Towns's timeline is hard right now, and probably means that they need to wait a little longer (and maybe even pay Wiggins before moving him, even if extra time and a much larger salary would potentially decrease his trade value.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LEvine View Post
    According to one of Sam's best friends, the absolute biggest thing that Flip and Sam used to get on him about was the stance. It drove Sam absolutely crazy and it was a daily struggle that got no where.
    Quite honestly...thats unacceptable.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kingsxman View Post
    Quite honestly...thats unacceptable.
    I think I've found myself in the Wiggins-sympathizer camp more of late, and I even agree that's pretty unacceptable and extremely frustrating.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LA_33 View Post
    Again, your assumption in bold is taken as an absolute truth by a lot of people, and that's the core assumption I'm questioning. A team needs all of the "do-stuff" production, but every good team also need multiple high-quality scoring threats, and the later truth (I guess "truth" is "IMO" there, but I think that's an absolute given) seems to be consistently downplayed by a lot of people who focus on value, combined-production advanced stats, and the like.
    I agree with this statement But I also think that if your highest-paid players are also not all-around players, your team is going to be at a distinct disadvantage in terms of competing in the playoffs.

    Quote Originally Posted by LA_33 View Post
    I also think Wiggins is actually more efficient already than a lot of people claim (or maybe more correctly, I think the "efficiency threshold" people seem to use is way too high, because getting nightly bulk scoring from a few guys, is actually more valuable/better than assuming that a team can spread the scoring around and everyone can have a lower usage and thus a higher efficiency; that happens for lower-usage guys, IMO, largely because they're not taking the shots on the toughest possessions, because the "volume scorers" are taking more shots for their teams, including more of the shots on possessions where a really good/open/efficient shot doesn't present itself.
    You have to give Wiggins credit for maintaining decent efficiency on high usage. However, his TS% isn't all that great, and it's actually gone down since last year. Whatever progression he has made this year has not translated into more efficiency since last year. And there's no denying that, according to the stats that try to measure a player's overall impact on the game, Wiggins is below average. One can certainly point to his good traits (e.g. low TOs, high free throws, improved 3-point shooting), but he's got a negative VORP and BPM. As far as progression, I think it's taken almost as a given that Wiggins will progress to All-Star of near All-Star status, and I question that, because I believe the issues are with his motor and I don't think that's easily correctable.

    Quote Originally Posted by LA_33 View Post
    But relating that to his likely salary, its fine and good if you'd prefer to spend money on all-around production, but: A) that's not how the NBA's actual salary market tends to work; defense and "do stuff" doesn't really get NBA perimeter players paid. Volume scoring, especially at reasonable efficiency, does; and B) if you're not willing to pay Wiggins what the market is going to dictate for his scoring ability (and his remaining upside, of which I think everyone can agree there is still some, even if the amount is open to plenty of debate), where are you getting similar volume-scoring in a guy who's a better all-around player? I don't think that's Zach, either, so you're probably still looking for a legit, well-rounded perimeter star scorer from the outside, and those guys are really rare, and will be increasingly hard to obtain under the forthcoming CBA. You can get complementary guys to provide the other "winning plays"/"do stuff" production, very often without paying huge money, but high-volume scorers are almost always expensive.
    I understand that volume scoring gets players paid, which is why I am assuming Wiggins will get around $25 million. I don't know the right move on this - pay Wiggins and hope he improves significantly or kick the can down the road and try to find a star wing in the future. My gut tells me that Wiggins is never going to become the type of star high-paid player who is going to get his team over the hump, and we'd be better off trading him for a future high pick. Basically, I think we'd be better off following the Sixers' blueprint. I don't want the team to pay a guy $25 million who needs to be constantly prodded to play hard. You can actually tell when Wiggins has been told to hustle, because he comes out energized for like one quarter or even a half a quarter. But then he slows down again, like a wind-up toy. I don't want a player like that on the team eating up that other big salary slot.
    Last edited by jbowyer; 02-07-2017 at 07:40 PM.


 

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