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Ainge likes possible draft change, but I don't

Posted by shawn cassidy on December 27, 2013 at 3:40 AM

I applaud the NBA for trying to stop tanking. I also think it's good that their looking into changing the recent format, although maybe doing a major over haul is not the answer in my book. I'll use the Thunder as a recent example of what happens in the draft. When Kevin Durant was drafted by the Sonics they didn't tank for him. Let's get that out of the way. The Thunder rebuilt through the draft, and they did it the right way, and the front office knew what it was doing. In the 2007 draft the Thunder picked Durant at number two and then traded Ray Allen to the Celtics for Jeff Green.

The following year the Thunder had the 4th pick, and they picked up Westbrook. The next year they picked at number three and the Thunder chose Harden. On one hand that's an example of a team building through the draft the right way. That's the dream for most teams. It was a kick build for the most part. The Thunder made the playoffs in 2010, and it took three years after drafting the centerpiece of the team Durant. On the one hand, if you look at the possible new system. You could say that Westbrook and Harden could have been on other teams spreading the wealth in the NBA, but what if it was the Lakers turn to pick in the top five of the 2009 draft? What if they picked up Harden?

The new system has more flaws then the current system. A lot of people like it because it kills tanking, but lets face it. It's the owners who are behind the bad teams that keep tankng. How many times have we seen the Raptors at the bottom, or the Kings in recent years at the bottom. Who is even tanking this year? The Celtics, nope, a team that the media pegged as tankers. The Raptors? They traded Rudy Gay, and everyone assumed they were tanking, but that's not even close to the truth. The Raptors are in first place in the Atlantic, and they seem like a team that wants to win. Yes they traded Gay, but so did Memphis last year, and maybe it's Gay?

I don't have the answers on how to fix the draft, and on the other hand I haven't given it much thought, because I think tanking is more then the draft. It's about owners not wanting to spend money. I think tanking is a bit over blown by the media as well, it's the media thinking teams should tank. If a team wants to tank it won't bring in a banner. Because the GM you have is garbage, and the ownership doesn't want to win when it's all said and done. I just don't see how the proposed system could help the teams that it should. Sometimes a Lebron James doesn't want to stay in a Cleveland. That's apart of the issue. Big name guys want to leave the small markets. The NBA has many issues with star players demanding deals, or wanting to leave their small market. We see some rare cases in Durant and Paul George. That's why the draft should stay as is. Tanking is done by GM's that should be let go.

Boston Herald

“That would make sense to me,” Ainge said. “It would put an onus on management to manage their team and their draft picks. They would be able to just play and not worry about maneuvering to get a draft pick. Every 30 years, you’d have the first draft pick. Every 30 years, you’d have the second pick, and so forth. Look at it this way, you’d be in the top six every five years.”
“I wish you just knew, OK, this year I’ve got the 10th pick,” he said. “Next year I’ve got the 17th pick. The year after that, I’ve got the third pick. The next year I’ve got the 29th pick. There doesn’t need to be a lottery, a draw. Nothing needs to be based on losing. I think the only complication at all would be just how you start the process and when. Obviously draft picks have been traded through the end of this decade, so it couldn’t begin until all that was cleaned up. But you could plan with it. When you traded for draft picks, you’d know exactly what draft picks you’re getting. You wouldn’t have like 20 pages of explaining draft picks and what’s protected and who might be getting it.”
“I just feel like there’s enough parity in the league, with the new collective bargaining agreement and the new tax system, that small market teams have every bit the chance to win as the big market teams,” Ainge said. “And there’s the revenue sharing that’s going on, which helps even things out, too. With all that, I believe that if we just gave out draft picks instead of order of finish — just assigned them — it would work out better on a lot of different levels.”
“There are just all sorts of things that are in the current system that don’t work and don’t put all of the focus on winning, which is where it always should be. I just don’t like that teams are being rewarded for losing. I don’t think that’s good for ownership. I don’t think it’s good for fans. I don’t think it’s good for players and coaches, anybody in the business.”

Read the Grantland article if you haven't already.

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