Bucks fans will enjoy this “Disappointment”…

There’s a great post on the site “Opposing Views” about the NBA’s Top 5 disappointments for the 2009-2010 season.  Bucks fans will enjoy two of them, and I discuss why most of them really weren’t that “disappointing”.

Richard Jefferson

Number one is the man the media told us the Bucks absolutely could not live without.  Mr. Richard Jefferson.   By trading him, the pundits told us, the Bucks were signaling that they were “tightening their belts” and in so doing they were giving up the season.

The blog that preceded this one, along with many other Bucks blogs, argued vehemently against that.  Jefferson is and was an average small forward.  He was severely overpaid.  He was not the “missing piece” in any one’s  championship puzzle.

I’ll bet Bucks fans barely remember that he was traded.

Charlie V

You will also note another “disappointment” was Charlie Villanueva.  Some Bucks fans fretted about losing Villanueva.  Not this one.  The Pistons overpaid for him.  He’s a good guy, he just wasn’t (in my mind) a good player.  Its unsurprising that he Pistons defensive collapse coincided with his arrival.

The LA Lakers

A couple other notes.  You see the Lakers as the number five disappointment.  Again, based on an overblown view of what Ron Artest would bring them.  I didn’t think they would be better, I thought they’d be a little worse.  And I even put my money where my mouth was back in October and put up a prediction as to their win total, and I came within 0.6 of a win away from their final pythagorean total of 54.2 wins (my total, based on player’s 3 year MWS48 averages and the playing time projected by BasketballProspectus was 54.8 wins).

You can see on the Spurs side I had Jefferson tabbed for a slightly below average season, which is basically what he had (Win Shares, a metric that is based strictly on offensive/defensive efficiency and comes up with results similar to Marginal Win Score pegged RJ at 6.0 wins — I predicted 5.4 wins.  If you click on the link, Win Shares can be found down in the “Advanced” Section.  If you do click on the link, please note how close I came on Ginobli and Duncan’s wins, and of course how far off I was on Antonio McDyess).

The Washington Wizards

The Washington Wizards are on the “Disappointment” list also.  Again, based on overblown expectations.  Gilbert Arenas, similar to RJ, is simply not that skilled at producing wins.  He’s skilled at scoring in volumes, but that is not what produces wins in the NBA.  Like RJ, he is an average player… which is not bad, but not worth anywhere near the money he earns.

The Chicago Bulls

Finally, the Chicago Bulls are up there.  I had the Bulls down for somewhere in the 42 win range.  Their pythagorean ended up being 36 something wins.  I don’t see how they were disappointing.  They won about what they would be expected to win.

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11 Responses to “Bucks fans will enjoy this “Disappointment”…”

  1. Palamida Says:

    I’m with u on everything but the Bulls:
    Sure, Rose isn’t what “they” think he is, but he was around average in his rookie campaign and I for one, expected him to improve, at least somewhat.
    With their Productive veterans meaning, Deng,Miller and Hinrich, with a Superstar win producer in Noah entering his Prime and with (projected to be) promising rookie in Taj Gibson I expected them to be a 42-45 wins caliber team.
    Sure they got to 41 but their Pyth. is much worse and 36 wins is Far from where I saw them in the preseason. I have to admit, I do see their season as a bit of a disappointment…
    It just felt wrong all the way. But I guess that’s what u get when u bring in FA’s such as proven non-producer Pargo…
    Honestly if it weren’t for Noah’s injury they probably would have finished with an 0’ish eff. Diff which isn’t that far removed from the 1.5-2 diff. team I thought they had in them :p
    Overall though, same old same old: Scorers get overvalued and then when expectations aren’t met (surprise, surprise) all we get is this so called “disappointment” BS – sans the finger pointing.
    But I guess that’s ur job, Mr. Blogman 🙂

    • tywill33 Says:

      I just did Derrick Rose’s win production for the season. I have him with a win average of .484%, nearly the exact percentage he had last season.

      So in a sense you’re right, he did not get any better. T

      The thing that really holds him down are his steals. His steal rate is that of a center, not a point guard. I had to do his average twice because I was kind of shocked at how low it was.

      Luol Deng and Noah drive the wins on that team.

  2. brgulker Says:

    The first two are a real bummer for me, but the first may not be as obvious. I was hoping that SA could find a way to motivate RJ, mainly so that McDyess would have a legitimate shot at winning a ‘chip. Not gonna happen, I’m afraid.

    I agree with the comment above to re: Rose — I expected him to improve at the PG, not hold steady. Had he improved, coupled with Deng being healthy and Noah’s improvement, they should have been in the mid-40’s or higher.

  3. Palamida Says:

    The thing about Rose is that he has a tendency to put up (every now and then!) a 30 pts game on a line like… idk… 14-20 from the field.
    that always looks good 🙂 The thing is he doesn’t take (or make) threes.
    The perennially under-appreciated Andre Miller for instance has been maligned all his career for “not stretching the defense” and whatnot, But not Rose.

    It appears to be a prerequisite for a starting PG (or any PG, really) in the NBA to be able to knock down the 3 ball at an acceptable clip. let’s assume 0.33% is acceptable (1 pps). For some reason no one ever picks on Rose they way everyone picks on say… Miller and Rondo. I think that at least some of the disrespect Sessions was receiving was due to this “ailment” as well.

    Of the Pg’s who play at least 20 mins a game, on a per min basis only
    Sessions (who actually only attempted 15 this season and made but one), Shaun Livingston and Arroyo made less threes than Rose. Never mind the Steals, this boy has got some long range practicing ahead of him.

    I have to add though, that Rose is one weird player. He steals like a Center and rarely converts threes (the league avg. btw for Pg’s is around 1 made three per 40 mins) but check this out: Despite his so called “explosiveness” Rose is slightly BELOW the league avg. in converting shots “at the rim”.
    No three’s, No rim, so where does he do his damage? according to Hoopdata Rose is basically tied for second best (with Chalmers) at the under 10 Feet range. Where are the scouting Dpts.? He’s vastly below avg from 16-23 and as I said – from beyond the arc. he’s slightly below average at the rim. He’s above average from 10-15 Feet, and among the league’s best in the Runners and floaters range (under 10 feet). That seems quite easy to guard, doesn’t it?
    Rose strength actually lies in the “worst” shot location in the game – the mid range.
    In addition something I noticed a while back is his Pf’s. He simply doesn’t commit them. I have no idea how, Why or what it means, but among PG’s who play at least 20 mins a game Rose leads the league in fewest Pf committed. Frigging Steve Nash commits more fouls (per min). Chris Duhon! commits more, how is that even possible? lol.
    Not to mention younger players seem to commit more PF’s, simply an oddity.
    Notice I said oddity not abberation – Rose performed a very similar feat in his rookie season thus this isn’t some fluke thing.
    Bottom line is, as was argued by the WoW and WoW derivatives (that’s you, Ty :)) Rose never should have been the first overall pick and like so many others he’s simply “living up” to his expectations or rather – our expectations.

  4. brgulker Says:

    I can’t shake the feeling that John Wall is the next Derrick Rose.

    Maybe the former will be a little better, but I’m not holding my breath.

  5. Palamida Says:

    Brgulker no need to shake anything :p.
    Warning : This is long even by my standards 🙂

    Mid-season I mentioned here the fact that Wall simply isn’t living up to all the hype (not to mention Turner and Cousins).
    I have no Idea how all this happened… Since HS he’s being touted as the next big thing. Every “scouting report” is raving praises. I’ve even seen a writer (an accomplished one, mind u) going as far as saying Wall will be the “best PG in the league till 2020!”. So here we are again with the same old standoff predraft:
    Stats aka past production as an indicator of future production vs. every other method of evaluating young talent. I keep arguing the same thing: year after year the stats do a better job in predicting future production than any other method. Simply put, Major college production along with the physical preqiuisite is almost synonymous with NBA production. Sure, sometimes a player exceeds his expectations and that too can be “predicted” partially. (producing the same stats as a Freshman or as a senior is hardly the same thing, for one).
    Let’s take the field of last season’s draft. When the Sixers (who actually needed a Pg) passed up on Lawson in favor of Jrue holiday I was flabbergasted. Every scout in the NBA seemed to think ever so highly of Holiday even though his production was Paltry. Lemme tell u something they were probably right! After starting the season simply terribly and even putting up some DNP-CD he really turned it around past the AS break. His numbers aren’t eye popping but they are certainly better than what I would have expected from his college production. If I had to rationalize i’d say he played partially out of position in college (at SG) on a deep roster (the same way Westbrook numbers were probably “suppressed’). he’s got elite level size and other physical tools. The bottom line is Holiday will probably never be as productive as Lawson, even with that said, not to mention The sixers could have used Lawson’s production right now, just ask the fired Eddie Jordan. Still i’ll admit that in this case the “scouts” saw something that just wasn’t there in the numbers. but wait a minute, what about Flynn? what about Derozan? Earl Clark? Jordan Hill? those 4 were picked between 6 and 14 and played exactly the way their numbers suggested they would or should I say – wouldn’t. Some GM will always be “smart” in Hindsight but the truth is it’s more accurate to call him lucky. and it’s not like Holiday will ever be a true elite PG in the league, maybe he’ll be an above average win producer.
    The productive ones – Blair, Lawson, Harden, Evans, Curry – were productive and will stay productive.

    The only Elite PG’s that weren’t all that productive in College that comes to my mind in recent history are Nash and Deron. If u wanna pursue a method in which you’ll be wasting lottery pick after lottery pick, picking unproductive players in search of the next Deron… be my guest, I wish you luck – you’ll need it.
    Holiday was the definition of a player who never should have been a one and done. He’s got potential? maybe. Why not let him showcase it? what kind of market commits wages to such a player when it has every right and ability to simply signal to him: “sorry bud, cya next year”.

    To conclude a few words on The actual subject – John Wall.
    The only thing he’s got going for him is his size but we’ll have to wait for the measurements to know if they are indeed as impressive as advertised.
    Probably he’s age too. he is still very young.
    Here is a list (incomplete by any means) of active players who surpassed Wall’s WSP48 mark in their ROOKIE years: (Wall posted 8.64 WSP48)
    1.) Rondo – 9.5
    2.) Cp3 – 11.9
    3.) Kidd – 12.64
    4.) Billups – 12.55
    5.) Rose – 10.21
    6.) Lawson – 9.92
    7.) Evans – 9.55
    8.) A. miller – 11.22
    9) Jason Williams -12.19 (i know :))
    10.) Curry – 12.13 (non major college)
    11.) Baron Davis – 9.36
    12.) Hinrich – 13.32 (yup… his other seasons weren’t that impressive).
    13) Ridnour – 9.1
    14) Jameer Nelson – 8.9
    15) Mike Conley – 11.25
    That’s a nice list. every Elite win producer at the PG position (besides Deron and Nash as previously stated) Surpassed Wall’s mark in their own Rookie seasons. There are many late bloomers who surpassed this mark later in their collegiate career and went on to become productive NBA PG’s, to name a few: Lowry, Jarret Jack, Nate robinson, Ramon sessions, Devin Harris , Mike bibby, Chalmers. some of those players were a lot closer to Wall they they were to the 12 Wsp48 plateau.
    I think that’s exactly where wall is headed- he’ll be slightly better than average as a rookie, improve to the 0.150 territory in his first couple of years and probably post a couple of 0.180-0.200 seasons in his prime.
    That’s quite good. I’d definitely consider picking such a player in the top 5, especially in a rather shallow draft and given his size and age he’ll probably land closer to the upper marks I pointed out than to the lower ones, but come on! Over cousins? over Turner? that’s just ludicrous.
    There’s nothing to suggest he’ll be a true elite win producer at his position, in fact historical precedent bodes quite poorly for him in that regard.
    Time will tell whose right – “us” or the “experts”.
    thoughts?

    • brgulker Says:

      To me, the .180-.200 range seems a bit high, to be perfectly honest. He’s young, he’s got great physical tools, and I get that. But those types of PGs are the exception, not the norm. I’m just not sure he’s much better than the norm yet — but IMO, he’s certainly not worth his hype of the #1 pick.

      I’m much more excited about Cousins and Turner. I think Turner’s going to improve his TO rate (more than a gut instinct than anything else), and Cousins just need to get in a little better shape.

      Anyway, sounds like we’re on the same page. I’m just going to be a little more pessimistic about Wall than you are, at least until he proves otherwise.

  6. Palamida Says:

    BR, Don’t get me wrong, I’m saying that IF everything falls into place for him we MIGHT see a COUPLE of 0.180-0.200 seasons and in that scenario we’re probably looking at a career mark of around 0.133-0.150 range. Does that me me optimistic?
    I would take Cousins and Turner over him without blinking;
    But truth be told while there are many examples to the contrary (aka late bloomers) you’d be hard pressed in finding a Major college PG, who saw starter mins in his rookie season posted a mark similar to Wall’s in terms of WSP48 and was anything less than an average NBA PG. In active players i’m quite sure there isn’t a single one. So if we are to assume\concur backed up by the historical precedent that being average is his Floor – I think a few seasons of 0.200 is a realistic Ceiling. That doesn’t justify all the hype, not by a longshot. Besides, hype is one thing, but he’s actually going to be picked ahead of much more productive players and that’s the real problem.

    A few things i’d like to note though: since Big men produce more on average it’s a valid claim that a PG\SG who can reach the 0.200 plateau is as valuable as a big man who produces say… 0.300. Guards that can produce in the 0.400+ range are a real oddity and the list probably starts and ends with MJ and CP3. that kind of player is extremely easy to build a championship team around (not that it’s all that hard building one around a Howard or a KG).
    In that respect I rate Turner and Cousins very similarly even though naturally Cousins will post a higher mark.
    I wouldn’t knock the value of a 0.150 PG (one that the team drafting Wall would probably get their hands on). It’s valuable, but if u compare him to the real league’s elite: Cp3, Rondo, Kidd, Billups etc. it’s very easy to surmise that he’s not that caliber of a player.

    I do think the 0.200 ceiling is a realistic one: as previously said he does have size and age on his size. Moreover he played on a team that was quite packed with NBA talent (not just Cousins) and even though one can argue some of his assists stem from the good finishers etc., evidence tends to lead us to conclude that the “diminishing returns” effect has more influence over a given player’s production, further improving his stock as a prospect.
    Also While his To rate (and totals) was practically unmatched by any Active PG, His assist rate was also on the high side which bodes well for him as a prospect. His most glaring weakness apart from To’s throughout the season was a very poor 3 Pt %, but the time the tourney was over he got it to 0.325 which is a respectable rate;
    so yeah, I don’t think my initial assessment was optimistic: John Wall is a very good prospect, just not a great one… certainly not one to be called “the best Pg in the league till 2020”
    That will never happen 🙂 Hope that clarifies my stand a little bit.

    P.S I actually made an crucial error in my previous comment. Kirk Hinrich DID NOT post a 13.3 WSP48 mark in his rookie season as I previously stated those are actually the numbers for his 3rd collegiate season (and it makes a whole lot more sense now). His rookie season was actually quite poor and he shouldn’t have been in that list, therefore, to begin with. Meh, my bad.

  7. ilikeflowers Says:

    I think Magic’s at the top of that list. Jason Kidd and John Stockton have also produced in the 4’s.

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