Posted by: Kingsguru21 | June 26, 2009

Ramblin’ my true ‘Reke intentions

Lord, I was born a ramblin man,
Tryin to make a livin and doin the best I can.
And when its time for leavin,
I hope youll understand,
That I was born a ramblin man.

Well my father was a gambler down in georgia,
He wound up on the wrong end of a gun.
And I was born in the back seat
of a greyhound bus
Rollin down highway 41.

I think anybody who read what I wrote here or here knew that part of it was just my angry reaction showing.

I know Tyreke Evans DOES NOT suck. I do question, and now that I’ve had 12 hours to distance myself from alcohol consumption, I still feel that way. Which is not to say that I’m right. I’m often wrong; hell who isn’t?

Petrie isn’t senile. Al Davis is. Do I need to say any more? (Yes? Umm kay. But, definitely not about Grumpy Al.)

Leaving Petrie out of this, he made it clear watching the youtube clip below that he thinks Evans has the ability to translate his great strength and length (which I’m aware he has) into creating mis-matches on both the offensive and defensive end.

One thing that’s important to note is that Petrie said that Evans was “Westphal’s first choice in the team he envisions”.

Umm, yeah. Far be it for me to complain about a coach do having a say in what players that will help him stay hired or get him ultimately fired. (Especially when I stumped for that coach to begin with.)

One of the things I’ve learned over the years, and I promised myself as I’ve gone along today, is that being mad about a pick one minute doesn’t mean shit once it’s made. I didn’t like the Patrick Ewing Jr or Sean Singletary picks much either, but it probably won’t mean much moving forward to the franchise.

I do think the Kings were looking to get some depth, and getting Sergio Rodriguez for that 31st pick (especially for a team going to run) along with the 38th pick to take Jon Brockman ,outta UW (I’m being indulgent saying it that way), is an interesting pick, and while I don’t know that Brockman is athletic and mobile enough to play on an up-tempo team, he can rebound the hell out of the ball. He’s also a very physical player.

So in a sense, if nothing else, Brockman might be good for the Kings to have in practice to battle Spencer Hawes and Jason Thompson. (There was a person on StR who mentioned that last night as well.)

Omri Casspi is a player that I think is similar to Derrick Brown, and since the Kings worked them both out, it’s clear the Kings weren’t in love with Brown. (They passed up chances to take him with the 23rd and 38th picks.)

Casspi I think will struggle defending the perimeter more than he will the post because he’s had more experience at Maccabi Tel Aviv defending closer to the basket. (This isn’t because you can play a lot more post defense in traditional NBA style. Euro teams just clog the lane a ton more than NBA teams do.) In time, he could become that player, and he will certainly have the country of Israel (and every dirty Jew in Sactown) rooting for him. (Well, maybe the Dirty Jew’s will root for him cuz they Kings fans.)

On a far more serious note, Casspi has long been mentioned by Jonathan Givony of DX to be enamored of the first Israeli taken in the 1st round. So, in that sense, congratulations to him and his family for that. (This of course goes to the Evans’ and Brockman families as well.)

Back to being the fat asshole I really am, Can Evans and Casspi become a wrecking crew on defense and in the open court? Well, Casspi is built for it, and it’s definitely the way he knows how to play.

(The belief the day before when the Blazers and Mavs swapped their picks was that the Blazers were moving up to select Casspi.)

Don’t get me wrong. I do like Casspi in some respects, and just like Evans and Brockman, I hope both do well in a Kings uni. (I am, after all, a Kings fan.)

Which is not to say I’m not concerned about how Casspi assimilates himself into the Kings and the NBA. (It would be interesting to see Casspi and Greene play together.) This also includes how well Brockman can translate what he does well (rebounding, toughness) into the NBA game overall. My hope is he can. My fear is he can’t. We shall see.

Evans is a different story.

I always believe that anytime you pick a G one of the things he must be able to do in order to separate himself from the pack is how he creates shots for other players around him. If Evans can find his teammates in transistion (And Dalt: If he can play in transition I will absolutely love this pick.)

Speaking of Dalt, if you haven’t read his Analysis of this year’s draft (and he’s been doing this several years now), I suggest you do so. His part 1 is here, His part 2 is here, and his part 3 is here.

In an email he sent me this morning (No noose’s today I promise), he mentioned something interesting I will quote here:

I totally respect your opinion. (I don’t respect my own opinion sometimes– PG) I am not saying that Rubio isn’t a better player (or more exciting) than Evans but let me just finish with this – I compare Evans to a mix of two players; 1) John Salmons (his 29 year old game in a 19 year old body) but stronger and faster with much better ball-handling and passing skills and 2) a longer Gilbert Arenas with a slightly worse jumpshot.

Hope I helped a bit. I really really wanted Rubio too. He was second on my system and he is a pure point guard. Evans will be great too I really believe. He is just not the PURE point guard that the Kings have never had. He will be a beast though and in time could become a player like Tracy McGrady (in his prime and without the injury disease) that demands double teams.

Let me explain something about venting. It’s important to do so. I don’t want to have an ulcer, heart attack or get type 2 diabetes because I’m obsessed about the Kings. I know that shit yesterday was over the top. That’s partly why I did it yesterday. If I had written what I really wanted, it would have included narratives to the Alex character of Clockwork Orange. Did you really want me to write that Geoff Petrie deserved a lobotomy and 2 years of torture? No? Me either. Basketball is just a game. Life (and basketball) should not be taken that seriously. (Even if Clockwork Orange is a great black comedy.)

Now, let me get back to my statement I was going to make regarding Dalt’s email. First, his point about Salmons style and the way Arenas plays would be interesting. There is a lot to like about that. Evans is not greatly athletic, but he’s so strong and quick I’m not sure it matters. (I watched him going up for layups in High School on youtube. He is not a leaper folks.)

But, I don’t care about Evans’ jumping ability. Magic Johnson and Larry Bird weren’t leapers either. So, what does that mean? Absolutely nothing.

We will hear about Evans’ not being able to shoot. Again, not a surprise. I already knew that, too.

My concern was always about his ability to handle the ball and find teammates in the open court. 3 things though I’d like to point out that I did overlook about Evans along the way.

1) His rebounding–it’s terrific
2) That the only position he’s played up to now is PG
3) That I believed his abilities can’t mesh with the Kings players

Clearly, the Kings think I’m wrong. I still think he’s a combo G if he truly taps all of his ability (far be it for me to believe he can’t), but it’s very clear the Kings think he’ll be a defensive monster. The allusion dalt makes to Tracy McGrady is a very good one. McGrady is not a PG, yet he handled the ball alot for Orlando and Houston, plus he could have made a much larger impact than he did on the defensive end and setting up teammates. (Shooting a lot of fade away 3’s is usually not a way to up your offensive advantage Tyreke.)

The ability to grab a rebound, blow by guys in the open court, and lay it up is not a common thing you find in this league. Tyreke Evans could be that type of player. He has the strength, length, (willingness) to play a defensive ball hawk style combined with consistently looking to make the right play.

Making the right play is not always passing the ball. Making the right play is putting your team in the best position to score via pass or shot. There is a large difference (and one reason TZ is always saying assists mean less than people place on them) between that.

If Evans can up his ability in the open floor to consistently find teammates or score himself, and up the ability of Westphal to match with G’s defensively on the other end, there’s very little reason to believe this pick can’t be a slam dunk for the Kings.

Clearly Gavin Maloof is on board with this. Reading this:

We loved Ricky Rubio,” an almost giddy Joe Maloof said midway into Thursday night’s festivities, “but Tyreke is the player Geoff thinks is going to help get us back to where we want to be. Geoff, coach (Paul) Westphal, all the scouts, everybody felt this was the right guy. It’s about winning. Winning sells tickets. Believe me, the room erupted when David Stern announced that Oklahoma City took … Harden.”

I knew when the pick was made I was likely to be wrong. And, I probably am. I’m a firm believer of body of work, and what it represents moving forward. The idea that Evans could be a star in this league is hard to deny. (I didn’t deny it before the draft. So I won’t deny it.) What I hope is that the allusion to T-Mac as a creator/distributor/defender that Dalt made is accurate.

That was always my fear was that asking him to make that leap, and taking the Kings with him, was probably not very likely. Clearly the Kings don’t agree.

There are days when I hope I’m not wrong, and there are days when I know I’m right. The day I’m glad I was right was the day the Kings traded Brad Miller. (John Salmons too. That may be the real foresight looking back.) More importantly, the day I hope I’m wrong is yesterday with regards to Evans (in particular–Brockman and Casspi is what it is) and will be happy to see I am when I know I am.

Because if Evans doesn’t pan out, I won’t be the only one depressed that he didn’t. But, I will always wonder what will happen if he just struggles to create shots for players in the open court (or open court period), or not defend the way the Kings are hoping.

Viva ‘Reke!

We left for Frisco in your Rambler
The radiator running dry
I’ve never been much of a gambler
and had a preference to fly
You said “forget about the airline,
let’s take the car and save the fare.”
We blew a gasket on the Grapevine
and eighty dollars on repairs
(chorus)
All aboard (Sausalito summernight)
All aboard (Sausalito summernight)
All aboard (Sausalito summernight)
All aboard
Hot summer night in Sausalito
Can’t stand the heat another mile
Let’s drop a quarter in the meter
and hit the sidewalk for a while
I’ll have a burger and a root beer
You feed the heap some of the grape
A shot of premium to boot, dear
We’ll get across the Golden Gate
(chorus)
All aboard (Sausalito summernight)
All aboard (Sausalito summernight)
All aboard (Sausalito summernight)
All aboard
Cashin’ all my checks
?Straightenin’ out my bank?
Spend it on a Rambler
with a wormhole in the tank
Look out over here
Watch out over there
Can’t afford a blowout
’cause we haven’t got a spare
(chorus)
All aboard (Sausalito summernight)
All aboard (Sausalito summernight)
All aboard (Sausalito summernight)
All aboard

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Responses

  1. Pook, welcome back.

    I was more surprised by the Brockman pick when we had the chance to draft Blair than by Evan’s selection. In a way I think we did draft Blair, without the concerns about his knees. Just to refresh your memory (cuz I know you read it) are a few excerpts from DX re Brockman.

    ……..”Built like a tank, the former Husky loves to throw his weight around on the block, playing with great toughness and a high motor. Though he’s not a great athlete, Brockman shows decent leaping ability for his size on the move, and could become an even better physical specimen if he continues to work on his athleticism.”

    ……..”Brockman was one of the top scorers and rebounders in the PAC-10 as a junior.”

    ……..”He gave up no ground in the post, showed average lateral quickness defending the perimeter, and effectively hedged the pick and roll on a couple of occasions. Not as dominant on the defensive glass as he was as an offensive rebounder, Brockman did a good job boxing out this week, and though he isn’t the type of elite athlete that is going to explode across the lane to pull down rebounds, he’s a very good defensive rebounder. He displays great hands and pulls down tough boards in traffic, which is important considering he doesn’t provide much of a presence as a help side defender or create many turnovers.”

    ………”He may have slowed down as the week went on, but he was easily one of the most productive players here. Making his ability to impact the game as a hustle player incredibly apparent to all the many NBA talent evaluators in attendance, Brockman likely helped his cause considerably, and may now have a chance to be drafted somewhere in the second round. Even if he doesn’t hear his name called on draft night, he’s the type of player who could easily endear himself to a coaching staff and make a roster in training camp. If not, there will be plenty of six-figure offers thrown his way from Europe”

    There was some negative stuff as well, mostly dealing with his height and his shot.

    ………”Brockman’s combination of excellent timing, hands, and mobility to pursue in combination with his ridiculously high motor played a big role in his performance……Other than rebounding, Brockman was a force scoring in the paint as well, often on putbacks, but also on catch-and-finishes and a few occasional post moves. He shows good touch in the post and a solid base of moves, but he struggled getting separation from his opponent on his moves,….”

    From the other stuff I’ve read, he’s got some hops, not great but maybe merely barely acceptable.

    He may not be as great rebounder as DeJuan but there is a place in the league for players like him and particularly on the Kings who desperately need a low post banger. I think he could stick.

    • I’m back. And BJ, good stuff. Yeah, I think the key word is toughness. That’s going to the next part of my writeup actually.

  2. Pookey,

    A little belated in reading this post. I was slow to log in post draft with all the part timers chiming in after the draft cuz I knew a lot of disgruntled folks would be venting. (I hope you do read my TYREKE post)

    I watched some older film of Tyreke and I think you are right he will be a 2 that brings up the ball ala Dwayne, Kobe earlier, McGrady or Arenas. I think we can match up with Segio or (hold your nose) Beno when we need a pass first match up but he should be more versatile on who he can defend. He can guard Baron and CP3 and some other team’s two that brings up the ball which should help us slow the pace, improve the Defensive efficiency and his rebounding will be a King’s first since I dunno the Big O. (BTW – that is the only comparison, you were right to shut that BS down on STR).

    I like the idea you elaborated here around putting teams in position to score. Anytime a player can drive to the hoop and score. Defenses will collapse on him. Jason and Spencer should benefit. If KMart or Cisco are on the wing and set they should get off more high percentage 3s.

    In years past the defenders clogged the passing lanes and interrupted those drive kick outs by all of our guards not named KMart.

    This alone should drop 3 TOs a game!

    As always, nice work dude.

    As an aside I am disappointed that you didn’t bring us Brockman though. Of course we weren’t reading the MRIs for Blair which obviously screwed the dude out of millions. I pick Blair at 31 and try to offer an alternative to the Blazers for Sergio.

    He will be like Michael Smith in practice making our starters tougher and should get rewarded for being a bruiser for 10 minutes a game when a team goes small.
    I agree that

  3. […] I thought the facts were on draft day was very different from the facts presented afterwards. It was clear that the Kings thought throughout the draft process that Tyreke Evans was a franchise level player. And, I can’t […]

  4. […] I have no problem calling Geoff Petrie senile. I also have no problem changing my tune if the need arises. I have no problem holding a different opinion or going with the flow. Readiness is all in these […]


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