Stagnant Warriors Run Deep

Oakland, CAAssociated Press, September 3, 2007

In an NBA Season that saw a record number of deals and a slew of blockbuster trades happening one after the other, the relatively inactive Golden State Warriors, which only made a couple of Free Agent pickups (apart from the draft picks they signed), has proven that playing an intact roster (from the Pre-Season, that is) for the full duration of a regular season can pay dividends by reaching the Western Conference Finals for the first time since Rick Barry led the underdog Warriors to a 4 game sweep of the Washington Bullets en route to their lone 1975 championship.

All too often second-guessed during the Pre-Season and Regular Season, the reclusive Warriors GM, John Knight, finally spoke to the press about the seeming “stand still” and virtual non-movement of personnel in the Warriors Organization. “I have gotten a lot of interesting suggestions and recommendations from basketball experts the whole season to tweak and even overhaul our line-up, especially with the wave of trades happening around the league. But we, as an organization, wanted to see how our current roster will develop into a well-synchronized and cohesive team, especially with the fact that we had all the valuable pieces of the core team in place. Chemistry was and is number 1 in our list.”

Unknown to the multitude, the Warriors’ GM got its share of trade offers, but promptly rejected most of them, opting to stick with the current roster and see how the budding chemistry pans out. GM Knight confirmed with reporters that he used Al Harrington and Stephen Jackson as trade baits at one point in the season. “This was done at a time when we were having troubles with the rotation as we wanted to insert Marco and Brandan into the picture to help in their development as future cogs of the team. We spoke to both Al and Stephen about it at that time, and they understood the situation. Only after a team powwow, just weeks before the trade deadline, that everybody came together and decided to stick it out and gut it out for the playoffs.”, Mr. Knight quipped.

What a “powwow” that was… Continue reading “Stagnant Warriors Run Deep”

Update: BallEx SIM League

UPDATED (07.20.07, 11:44 AM Manila Time):

We now have 15 GM’s for the inaugural BallEx SIM League. On July 19, we had 6 new GM sign-ups! The Commish plans to start the Beta Test run next week (exact date to be announced) so that everyone will get acquainted with how the SIM League is played out.

Trade offers are already being made among the GM’s and it looks like we’re going to have an almost done deal between the Sonics and the Blazers. The deal rests on how much rookie Jeff Green (1st round pick of Boston in this year’s draft who was traded to the Sonics as part of the Ray Allen transfer to the Celtics) will officially get once he signs the contract in real life*.

*Real life? Yep! You got that right! Player salaries in this SIM League are best on actual salaries as posted by the NBA.

Here are the remaining available NBA Teams (per Division):

ATLANTIC:
Heat
Knicks
76rs

CENTRAL:
Pistons
Cavaliers
Pacers
Hawks
Hornets
Bucks

MIDWEST:
Spurs
Rockets
Timberwolves

PACIFIC:
Clippers
Kings

Time to pick! And yes… this year’s NBA Finalists have yet to be signed up by a GM! 🙂

Dissecting the 2007 NBA Draft

The much anticipated 2007 NBA Draft is now a thing of the past, and as expected we saw the next great bigman Greg Oden get drafted at #1 by the Portland Trailblazers. As also anticipated the freakishly gifted Kevin Durant was taken at #2 by the Seatle Supersonics. We also saw the other much publicized college hoopsters like the Florida trio of Joakim Noah, Al Horford, and Corey Brewer get drafted in the top 10. But what about the other guys taken in the first round? Will they ever make an impact or will they simply be overshadowed by the more prominent names from college hoops?
I would like to focus on the players you may never have heard of before. They are the ones taken in the latter part of the draft, but because they were drafted by teams whose style of play fits their own, they will have the opportunity to make a splash once they are given ample minutes on the hardwood.

1) Marco Belinelli – Golden State Warriors
Is Don Nelson a wiz at scouting talent or what? Belinelli fits the Warriors offense to a T! Nellie loves shooters, and he probably got the best gunslinger in the 07 Draft. His stroke is like a combo of Allan Houston and Peja Stojakovic. He has good passing skills and can handle the rock, a must for all players who want to be part of Nelsons run and gun style of play. He has been playing pro-ball in Europe the past 4 years and can be considered vet the age of 22. The only knock on this guy is his defense, which is a common flaw in all Euro players. He must toughen up if he wants to survive the rigors of the NBA’s 82 game sched. Nevertheless, his shooting alone ensures him of quality PT on the floor. I can just imagine the thrill he got when he heard he was headed to the Bay Area…

2) Alando Tucker – Phoenix Suns
Another swingman who can flat-out score from anywhere on the floor. And what better place for a scorer to be in than on a team that loves to shoot at will! He is a high-flyer who glides to the hoop with ease. If you block his path he will pull up and shoot right over you. He will need to improve his range out to the 3-point line if he wants to gain more PT with the Suns. But his knack for scoring will intrigue Mike D’Antoni no end, he will find a way to give Tucker some time on the floor in his rookie season.
Tucker may have been disappointed when he was not taken in the top 20, but hearing his name called out by the Suns at #29 surely made his day! Hey Raja, your days as the starting SG of the Suns are numbered my friend…

3) Morris Almond – Utah Jazz
The Jazz have been actively seeking an SG, what with the imminent departure of Playoffs hero Derek Fisher. They got a good one at #25 in Morris Almond. He already has an NBA-ready body and with the proper skill to boot. His midrange jumper is money and he can curl off screens with ease ala Reggie Miller and Ray Allen. An excellent passer, could play PG if he only had better ballhandling skills. But the Jazz already have Deron Williams so he need not bother with that. He’ll need to improve his drive to the basket moves coz he can’t rely on his jumper forever. Nevertheless, the Jazz were fortunate to have landed a player of Almonds caliber late in to the first round. Being a very hard worker, Jerry Sloan will just love this guy!
If the Jazz fail to land a vet SG during free agency at least they got an insurance policy in Morris Almond.

You can coach these players in the BallEx SIm League! Sign up for a team now: http://basketball.exchange.ph/forum/index.php

Glimpse: The BallEx SIM League DEPTH CHART

Apart from being a General Manager of a Team in the upcoming BallEx SIM League, the participant will have the chance to create a Team’s “personality” and style of play as a Coach.

Will you build a team based on a high octane, run-and-gun, with nary an emphasis on defense philosophy? Will you emulate Mike D’Antoni and build a team like the Phoenix Suns? Will you be a Phil Jackson, who, with the triangle offense, creates a team based on this offensive concept, valuing teamwork and emphasizing the need for players with excellent passing skills? Or will you be like Sloan, who puts emphasis on defense and half court execution, employing numerous variations of the pick and roll offense?

To give you an idea how team’s are made to play a particular style of offense and flavor of defense, a BallEx SIM League GM/Coach submits a Depth Chart which contains the following:

Before every SIM I will be starting a thread wherein all GM’s must post their respective Depth Charts. Format must be as follows:

Starting Five:

C: player 1/ player 2 / player 3
PF: player 1 /player 2 / player 3
SF: player 1/ player 2 / player 3
SG: player 1/ player 2 / player 3
PG: player 1/ player 2 / player 3

Injured Reserve: player 1/ player 2 / player 3

* Maximum 12 players on the active roster, the rest go on the Injured Reserve

Key Offensive Players:
1) player/option 1
2) player/option 2
3) player/option 3

PACE: choice of Very Slow, Slow, Normal, Fast, Very Fast
TRAP FREQUENCY: choice of Never, Sometimes, Normal, Often, Always
PRESS FREQUENCY: choice of Never, Sometimes, Normal, Often, Always
OFFENSIVE FOCUS: choice of Inside, Outside, Balanced

Notes:

  • Starting Five: You can load 3 players per position. This will determine the order of rotation when a player needs to sit down to get some rest or gets into foul trouble. Example: If for the C position, you submitted this list — Biedrins / Foyle / Wright, Biedrins starts at Center, who is then substituted by Foyle, and then Wright.
  • Some players may play more than 1 position. A PF can play C and vice versa, an SG can play SF and vice versa.

These Depth Charts are required information and must be submitted four (4) hours before the scheduled simulation.

You may see the need for adjustments, especially if you notice that your team is riding a 4 game losing streak.  That calls for some immediate tweaking.  You may change the starting lineup or change the offensive settings or defensive settings.  Or you may want your point guard to be the first offensive option.

It’s up to you!  The freedom is yours with the BallEx SIM League!

Calling All Ballers Who Want to be a General Manager of an NBA Team

Good day, Basketball Junkies!

Slots are still available for prospective General Managers (GMs) for our BallEx SIM League. We’d like to invite those who are interested in trying out the life of a GM of an NBA Team (at least, in this NBA simulation).

We have 22 slots available. We hope to fill this up before the last week of July 2007.

Don’t be intimidated by the SIM League rules and mechanics. Your Commish and yours truly will be there to hand-hold you along the way. In fact, we will kick off the BallEx SIM League with a Beta Test Run, so that those who are still unfamiliar with the system can get their feet wet by asking questions and learning from their mistakes.

This is a fun distraction especially while we are waiting for the NBA Season to commence on November 2007.

You can check out the Teams that are still available here.

To review the roster of the available teams, please visit the BallEx SIM League Home Page.

Teams taken are the following:

  1. Chicago Bulls (GM: Curveball)
  2. Denver Nuggets (GM: TroyD92)
  3. Golden State Warriors: (GM: John Knight)
  4. Orlando Magic: (GM: Anton_oberio04)
  5. Phoenix Suns: (GM: Pugz)
  6. Portland Trailblazers: (GM: Varsitsyks)
  7. Utah Jazz: (GM: The Commish)

Let’s get it on, Guys!

UPDATE (07.19.07, 9:18 AM Manila Time): We now have a total of 10 GMs for the BallEx SIM League. 19 Teams still waiting for their GM’s. Sign up now and enjoy the thrill of managing and coaching your OWN NBA Team! Visit the BallEx SIM League Board to view the remaining teams.

UPDATE2 (07.19.07, 3:38 PM Manila Time):  2 more GMs signed up, taking the Nets and the Grizz.  Trade offers have been made.  Trade between TroyD92 (GM of Denver Nuggets) and Antonio_oberio04 (GM of the Orlando Magic) is being finalized.

BallEx SIM League: Now Accepting GM Sign Ups!

The BallEx SIM League is now open!

To view and review the roster of the Team you’d like to manage and coach, kindly go to this link: http://www.basketball.exchange.ph/forum/viewtopic.php?t=12.

Apart from our Commish and yours truly, we already have two (2) new GM’s who have signed up. The Teams picked, so far, are: the Golden State Warriors, the Phoenix Suns, the Utah Jazz, and the Denver Nuggets. All Western Teams! 🙂

25 NBA Teams are still available as of today, July 16, 2007 (4:00 pm). Sign up now so you can reserve your favorite team!  (The SIM League Application is only updated to run a total of 29 NBA Teams in the meantime).
Please note that you will need to register as a user in the BallEx Forum first before you can enter and sign up a team.

Tip: If you happen to pick a team that you feel is weak relative to the other teams, please remember that you can still make your team competitive by striking deals or trades with other teams. It is up to you to make the right tactical or strategic maneuvers if you plan to make your team competitive for the current season or embark on a rebuilding mode if you plan for your team to be competitive in the next or following seasons.