There is another GM named Billy that sucks
Posted by Ricky - Sixers4guidos on November 12, 2007
I just finished watching Hawks-Wizards, which means few things:
a) my other options for this sunday evening weren’t exactly exciting
b) I am a NBA junkie
c) in every NBA game, and I mean every, you can find at least a dozen things that it’s worth watching: players, plays, facts to analyze
Here are some of the things that came to my mind following this game
1) dear old Randy “juicy face” Ayers (in the picture) is still around, and he’s the assistant to Eddie Jordan. He must be a nice guy and a good assistant.
I mean, he even looks like an assistant coach, you see him and you realize it’s like he was born to do that. Actually someone named Randy Ayers HEAD coach of a NBA franchise one time, but I’m digressing…
2) Josh Smith is a great athlete but his shot selection makes Antoine Walker look like John Stockton
3) you think your favorite team (whatever it is) is disfunctional? Take a look at the Hawks roster. Today they played basically the whole fourth quarter with this line up: Joe Johnson, Josh Childress, Josh Smith, Marvin Williams, Al Horford.
This means a SG as point guard, a SF at shooting guard, two forwards (you pick who is the small and who is the power one, I honestly have no clue) and a PF as center.
4) historically, Atlanta has been needing a point guard and a center for the last…uhm.. five years? This season Hawks have four (FOUR) point guards on their roster: Acie Law, Speedy Claxton, Tyronn Lue, Anthony Johnson. Make it five if you think that 6’1 Salim Stoudamire can’t be considered a shooting guard.
And Joe Johnson has to bring the ball in the other half court in the decisive quarter ??? Well, maybe this was really necessary, since Atlanta real point guards combined for 2 points on 0-8 shooting today.
Hawks centers are actually three: Horford (?), Pachulia (…), Lorenzen Wright (…). Well, today Brendan Haywood (B-r-e-n-d-a-n H-a-y-w-o-o-d) DOMINATED in the low post and literally partied under the Hawks’ basket, with six offensive rebounds (+ 5 by Jamison)
Now, before starting bashing Hawks management, please remember thay hadn’t many draft picks to build from in the last years…
5) is Tyronn Lue uglier now, with his head shaved, than before, with the cornrows? Hard to say (which leads to another question; what about this “All ugly team”: Tyronn Lue, Sam Cassell, Adam Morrison, Robert Swift, Calvin Booth? Bench: Marko Jaric, Derek Fisher, Tayshaun Prince, Vladimir Radmanovic, Eddy Curry)
6) wanna have some good laughs? Read Billy Knight’s page on hawks.com. Not only they haven’t updated it since last season, but it’s so self praising it’s unbelievable. The unintentional humour of this text is amazing, you can find gems such as:
“Knight has patiently crafted a young and up-and-coming team that is seeking to reverse the results of the past seven seasons and challenge for a positive finish in 2006-07”
Hawks record in 2006-2007: 30-52.
Hawks “positive finish”: 3-11 in the last 14 games.
More from his page:
“This offseason, Knight has continued to reshape the look and future of the Hawks. He selected Duke’s Shelden Williams with the fifth overall pick in the 2006 Draft and added agile center Solomon Jones in the second round, and acquired free agents Craig “Speedy” Claxton and Lorenzen Wright to fill necessary positions on the Atlanta roster”
Stats of the “fifth overall pick” at the end of the season: 5.5 PPG in 18 MPG.
Solomon Jones is probably “agile” but as a basketball player you would hope that he can do something more than his 3.3 PPG average.
One would say the moves were questionable, but in Knight’s virtual hagiography we can read the reasons of his choices (so we can possibly learn something):
“Claxton gives the Hawks the quality point guard the club has lacked, and by returning Wright to the roster and complementing last year’s free agent surprise Zaza Pachulia at center, he brings the tough, inside presence Mike Woodson has desired since becoming the Hawks head coach”
Claxton stats for 2006-2007: 42 games played, 5.3 PPG, 32% FG, 21% 3pt, 55% FT. Great “quality” indeed.
Zaza Pachulia had a nice year to be fair but honestly saying that he and Lorenzen Wright brought some “tough presence” in the paint sounds, again, unintentional sarcasm.
Knight is not done yet:
“During that offseason, Knight’s rebuilding plan started with the selection of Boris Diaw and Travis Hansen in the 2003 Draft”
Impressive, also considering that Diaw blossomed as soon as Knight traded him to Phoenix.
But I’ll leave you the pleasure to read the rest.
What Hawks official site accidentally (?) forgets to tell us is the team achievements during Knight’s tenure, so I’ll tell you in a nutshell.
Seasons: four, playoffs appearances: zero. Overall record: 97-231.
For complete, and fair, coverage of Billy’s remarkable career & smart moves take a look here.
And I thought Billy King was a mediocre GM… (let me go check his official page)