Saturday, August 18, 2012

Talking Myself into the Dwight Howard Trade

I actually did watch more than my fair share of the Olympics. Much more than I usually watch. Mostly because there had been absolutely nothing else to watch, but I still enjoyed it nonetheless. It's really just me biding my time until football. Which is here now.

Football is here now.

But before we get there, I have to wrap up on basketball season. The Dwight Howard debacle is finally over. Yes, we might have gotten hosed in the deal. Yes, I might have thrown some things upon finding out the deal was finalized. Might not have though. But it's over, and that is a relief. The downside of the deal is painfully obvious, so bear with me while I try to talk myself into the pieces we received.

We will be terrible. Absolutely terrible next season. A starting five of Gustavo Ayon- Glen Davis- Hedo Turkoglu- Arron Afflalo-Jameer Nelson is one destined for the lottery, which is the point. Vucevic was a first round pick a year ago. Andrew Nicholson and Mo Harkless were first round picks this year. And we have a couple of first rounders coming to us over the next couple of seasons, in addition to our own. We haven't had an infusion of young talent in a while. Just overpaid aging players. There appear to be no knuckleheads on this team. Just guys looking to prove themselves (Vucevic, Nicholson, Harkless) and some veterans that play hard (Ayon, Big Baby, Redick). You could do a lot worse than that. Two years from now, Turkoglu/Gilbert Arenas (still receiving a check from Orlando) will be off the books. Big Baby/Harrington/Nelson will all be in the final year of their contract. We should have a nice core of young talent and mass amounts of cap space. Only so many players can hold out for the New York/LA/Miami market. The rest of the guys will go where the cash is. Orlando will have plenty of it, a new facility and Florida weather/no state tax. Maybe it won't attract the LeBron/Durant's of the NBA, but maybe the Demarcus Cousins/James Harden types decide to take their talents to Disney World. 

The Thunder re-signed Serge Ibaka to a 4 year/$48 million dollar deal. I understand why they did it, even if I don't agree with it. Ibaka is a young guy that has improved every year, turned himself into a great shot blocker and fits in with the Thunder's philosophy of young guys that play hard and like playing with each other. Cool beans. He's also a guy that has never averaged 10 ppg in a season on a team where he gets a decent share of open looks. He's a guy that has never averaged 8 rpg, on a team where the small forward leads the team in rebounds. He has to be played out of position (at center) late in the game because he and Perkins are liabilities offensively. He blocks a high number or shots, because he's allowed to roam as Perkins mans the post. He's a good, not great man to man defender. He's never played 30 mpg in a season. The Thunder will be paying around $20 million next season to Perkins/Ibaka. A front court that combined to average15 ppg/12 rpg in the postseason, and can't play together at the end of games will be making $20 million next season. Dwight Howard will make $19 million next season. Who would you rather have, Howard or Perkins/Ibaka? I'm just not sure how this gets them past the Heat, or even the Lakers now. James Harden will surely command $10 mill+ per season. I just don't think that a Perkins/Ibaka/Durant/Harden/Westbrook core beats the Heat/Lakers as currently constructed. I could be wrong though, as Durant keeps improving exponentially and they have the option to amnesty Perkins for a little cap space. I'm interested to see how this turns out.

Speaking of Perkins, I've read a few things about how he'll be able to match-up with Dwight Howard. I'd like to put that one to bed early. Again, I'd like nothing more than to watch Dwight Howard teams flame out in the second round, but I will be objective about his talent. Once upon a time, Perkins did give Dwight trouble in the low post. Not so much recently. In the last 10 games they have played against each other (regular season and postseason), Dwight has averaged 22 ppg and 12 rpg on 51% FG. Take the last six games, and it gets uglier: 26 ppg, 14 rpg on 57% FG. Consider this was without the benefit of Pau Gasol taking attention away from him in the paint. Or Kobe Bryant attracting attention on the perimeter. Or Steve Nash setting him up with great passes and spacing. He won't hang 40 on Perkins, but he won't need to with his new teammates. The Lakers are going to be VERY good.

I wonder what Joey Votto could fetch in a trade.

No but seriously, the Reds are playing some outstanding ball right now. Playing much too well for me to talk about how well they've been playing.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Infante, Olympics and Football

That would be a pretty ridiculous line-up.  Of course, you're talking to the guy whose team just traded a good young pitcher for Omar Infante.  I have nothing against Infante (and he's certainly a better option at second than Santiago or Raburn), but he was on the Tigers until 2007.  So he basically left the Tigers for 5 years, and it took a good young pitcher to get him back.
Again, this is Omar Infante we're talking about.
But they've been winning quite a bit recently, so I guess Dombrowski knows more about running a team than I do.  Imagine that.

Every time I saw something about Dwight, I just assumed that you had given up on him.  It's just to the point of craziness at this point (although I haven't heard anything about it for over a week...I'll credit the Olympics for that).
Hey...speaking of the Olympics...

Have you been watching?  As always, I find myself watching way more than I thought I would.  The water sports really don't interest me at all, but I seem to enjoy most of the other sports.  I'll be sad when it's over.  But not too sad because FOOTBALL!  The first Packers preseason game is Thursday, and I couldn't be more excited.  I'm really looking forward to seeing Nick Perry in action.  I really think he can help turn the defense around this year.  I'm also really looking forward to seeing BJ Coleman.  Sure, he'll probably just end up on the practice squad, but I think he could be a great back-up QB.  Oh, who am I kidding?  I'm excited to see everyone.
A guy at work gave me tickets to the Packers third preseason game in Cincinnati.  I'm amped.
I broke down and signed up for NFL Game Rewind this year.  So get ready for a lot of amateur analysis based on me watching the All-22 film.
However, I'm also excited about the condensed game feature.  You better believe I'll be watching pretty much every game like that this year.

I have now seen The Dark Knight Rises three times.  I can rationalize it away as going with three different groups of people, but I don't really need to.  It's a fantastic movie, and I probably would have seen it multiple times if I had to go by myself.

I listened to the new Rick Ross once.  I liked some of it.  Didn't care for some of it.  Pretty much like every Ross album I've heard.

I finally joined Twitter.  So, if you're looking for occasional movie quotes, follow me.  @maynardjive