1. Welcome! Please take a few seconds to create your free account to post threads, make some friends, remove a few ads while surfing and much more. ClutchFans has been bringing fans together to talk Houston Sports since 1996. Join us!

[More Knicks Stuff]- Isiah rips Greg Anthony over draft comments

Discussion in 'NBA Dish' started by AstroRocket, Oct 18, 2006.

  1. IROC it

    IROC it Contributing Member

    Feb 16, 1999
    Likes Received:

    Props to Anthony for not being a homer on a national stage... Wish Mike Irvin would do it in football. :rolleyes:

    I guess Zeke is still a bad boy at heart. ;)
  2. The_Yoyo

    The_Yoyo Contributing Member

    Dec 25, 2001
    Likes Received:
    remember now thomas did draft that tracy mcgrady guy we have on our team when most people laughed at him for doing so....mcgrady turned out to be a decent pick
  3. Honey Bear

    Honey Bear Contributing Member

    May 8, 2006
    Likes Received:
    You can't rip Isiah for taking Balkman, because he's exactly the kind of player the Knicks needed. He's a raw Tayshaun Prince; and the Suns and Lakers both liked him for late first round picks. If you think he would have gone undrafted, well, you don't know what you're talking about.

    No one has done a better scouting job than Isiah and Danny Ainge in recent times. He's a stupid GM, right up there with Chris Mullin, but a pretty good talent evaluator.
  4. StupidMoniker

    StupidMoniker I lost a bet

    Jul 18, 2001
    Likes Received:
    Not for the Raptors he didn't. They ended up getting a 2nd round pick for him IIRC. That is the peril of a small market team/a team that players don't want to play for drafting a high-schooler. They may turn into a good player, but they may also be turning into a good player on some other team (TMac in Orlando, Jermaine O'Neal in Indiana)

    As for Anthony showing loyalty to the Knicks, he was on that team for 4 of his 11 seasons, it isn't like Thomas with the Pistons or Rudy T with the Rockets, he was well traveled and can't just be a homer for 20% of the NBA teams.
  5. Nice Rollin

    Nice Rollin Contributing Member

    Mar 30, 2006
    Likes Received:
    wowwwwwwwww. greg anthony just got choppped up!
  6. Zboy

    Zboy Contributing Member

    Aug 19, 2002
    Likes Received:
    LOL NICE!!!!

    Greg Anthony is a schmuck!!

    As a player, he was horrendous. Absolutely terrible and had one of the ugliest forms on his jumpshot. When he was ready to shoot, his butt would stick out all the way to the half court line. He used to get a couple of minutes behind Derek Harper and that is the time when most teams would make their run agaisnt the Knicks. He was terrible on offense and absolutely useless on defense. Sam Casell as a rookie skooled up on occasions during the 94 Finals.

    Despite being completely useless he talks on ESPN as though he dominated the game and knows everything about it. Shut up Greg!! LOL! You are so full of **** most of the time. Atleast Kenny has the rings thanks to Hakeem. You have nada!

    As much as you suck Isiah Thomas, THANK YOU for raping Greg Anthony.
  7. Rocketman95

    Rocketman95 Hangout Boy

    Feb 15, 1999
    Likes Received:
    I think the Knicks may be the East team I follow this year. It's between them, the Bulls and the Raptors.
  8. The_Yoyo

    The_Yoyo Contributing Member

    Dec 25, 2001
    Likes Received:
    if i remember right thomas was the gm who picked mcgrady with the 9th pick i remember reading on the back of my mcgrady rookie card a direct quote from isiah saying how they felt they got the second best player in the draft. (behind duncan)

    also in a SI issue i had that hard an article on mcgrady during his rookie year it said how dissapointed he was when he learnt isiah was leaving and how isiah almost traded him to the sixers along with walt williams for stackhouse and weatherspoon
  9. vlaurelio

    vlaurelio Contributing Member

    Jan 26, 2005
    Likes Received:
    sixers would hav been champs with deke, AI, & tmac VS shaq & kobe in the finals

    about draft night, opinions should be based on facts.. facts are isiah has a good draft history, and he has researched and tried out balkman.. greg knows nothing about balkman..

    i remember even stephen a said he'll keep quiet and wait since Isaiah has a good draft history and he knows nothing about balkman..
  10. SamFisher

    SamFisher Contributing Member

    Apr 14, 2003
    Likes Received:
    Balkman is turning out to be not too shabby -- so far. Kind of a jerome williams high energy type.

    rest of article
    #30 SamFisher, Oct 19, 2006
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2006
  11. TeamUSA

    TeamUSA Member

    Aug 2, 2006
    Likes Received:
    Loyalty and denial are similar things when it comes to this issue.
  12. rimbaud

    rimbaud Contributing Member
    Supporting Member

    Nov 3, 1999
    Likes Received:
    No, nobody laughed at him for drafting McGrady. People really knew about TMac since about his sophomore year. I remember reading when he was a junior that scouts were saying he was the best player in North Carolina - including Glenn Rice (who was an All-Star for the Hornets at the time).

    He dropped to nine only because it was 1997 and the thinking was different than it is now.
  13. MiniMing

    MiniMing Rookie

    Jul 28, 2002
    Likes Received:
    Greg Anthony is garbage.
  14. VesceySux

    VesceySux Contributing Member

    Jul 31, 2001
    Likes Received:
    I want my (national) commentators to be objective, regardless of which team they played for. Period. If I wanted blind loyalty and knob slobbering, I'll just listen to Steve Kerr, the King of All Homers and resident NBA douchebag.
  15. Stickfigure

    Stickfigure Member

    Jun 2, 2001
    Likes Received:
    I think you could defend Anthony's comments as *being* a sign of loyalty to his former team. As a Knick, he's probably fed up with Isiah completely flushing the team down the toilet with his atrocious personnel moves and salary cap management.

    Remember, Isiah's original loyalties were always to the Pistons. The Pistons loved nothing more than to stomp the Knicks. And that's exactly what Isiah is doing to them now.

    Finally, I don't see why it's relevant that Isiah was a better player than Anthony. Isiah's stellar pro career certainly wasn't indicative of the suckage he'd show as a GM, so why should Anthony's mediocrity as a player have anything to do with his skills as a commentator?
  16. SamFisher

    SamFisher Contributing Member

    Apr 14, 2003
    Likes Received:
    Isiah has now been with the knicks about as long as Anthony was, so I don't see the relevance.

    The point is that Balkman has looked to be pretty good -- so far -- and that Isiah, for all his faults, has a pretty decent track record as far as drafting NBA talent, so Anthony's blasting of Balkman was premature, to say the least.

    EDIT: actually, looking at the results I'd say Isiah's drafting record goes beyond decent and passes into the realm of "really, really good"

    1995: Damon Stoudamire (7th)
    1996: Marcus Camby (2nd)
    1997 Tracy McGrady (9th)
    2004 Trevor Ariza (44th)
    2005 Channing Frye (8th)
    David Lee (30th)
    Nate Robinson (acquired in Kurt Thomas/Richardson trade)
    2006 Renaldo Balkman (20th), Mardy Collins

    I'm hard pressed to identify any real busts there, and there's a few really good players.
    #36 SamFisher, Oct 20, 2006
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2006
  17. Tigerknee

    Tigerknee Contributing Member

    Jan 10, 2003
    Likes Received:
    Excellent points
  18. Easy

    Easy Boban Only Fan
    Supporting Member

    Jul 23, 2002
    Likes Received:
    Isiah's problem is not questioning Anthony's comment about his draft pick. If He stuck with that, that would have been all good. Anthony would have looked bad. Comentators can say whatever they want. Coaches/GMs have the right to respond if the comments are wrong.

    But he did not just stick with that. He took it personal. And bringing in their former careers as players was irrelevant. It was just a low blow personal attack.
  19. verse

    verse Contributing Member

    Aug 13, 1999
    Likes Received:
    The First-annual Atrocious GM Summit

    By Bill Simmons
    Page 2

    When we were in Houston for All-Star Weekend, one of the marquee events was the annual Technology Summit at the Houstonian, featuring celebrities such as Mark Cuban, David Stern, George Bodenheimer, Magic Johnson, Charles Barkley and Anderson Cooper. Little was made of another gathering: The first-annual Atrocious GM Summit, held Sunday morning at the La Quinta Inn.

    Our dream panel included Philadelphia's Billy King; former Raptors GM Rob Babcock; Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak; former Knicks GM Scott Layden; former Cavs GM Jim Paxson; Minnesota's Kevin McHale; former Orlando GM John Weisbrod; and, of course, Isiah Thomas of the New York Knicks. Sadly, Wes Unseld was unable to make it after he accidentally traded his first-class Delta Airlines ticket to Houston for three Southwest Airlines tickets to Atlanta.

    (Note: We were going to invite Elgin Baylor, but he was ruled ineligible for the discussion after pulling off the Cassell-Jaric and Radmanovic-Wilcox heists. That's not the Elgin we once knew and loved. Come back to us, Elg.)

    Of course, when the NBA asked me to moderate this discussion, I couldn't have been prouder. Here's a transcript of what happened:

    Simmons: Guys, first of all, thanks for joining us today, it's an absolute honor to be here.

    King: Just remember, if you do a good job for the next two hours, I'll give you a $25 million contract for six years!

    (Everyone laughs.)

    Simmons: Jim Paxson, let's start with you. Last February, you traded a 2007 first-round pick to Boston for Jiri Welsch. Four months later, after you were fired by the Cavs, they traded Welsch to Milwaukee for a 2006 second round pick. To my knowledge, that's never happened before. Walk us through that.

    Paxson: Absolutely. When you're making a bad trade, there are some inherent elements that need to be there. First, are you putting your own short-team interests ahead of the long-term interests of the team? With the Welsch trade, there were rumors I might get fired, and we needed another body to make the playoffs … really, why would I care about protecting future No. 1 picks if I was probably getting canned?

    McHale: Hear hear! I don't think we have a first-round pick until 2017. And I might trade that one this week.

    Paxson: See, Kevin knows what I'm talking about here. The second element: Are you rolling the dice with someone with "potential," who has never contributed to a winning team? Jiri had bounced around the league and couldn't even crack Doc Rivers' regular rotation -- and Doc uses 11 guys a night. So that was in place. Third, and most important, are your fans going to be outraged when they hear about the trade and say things like, "What the hell?" and "How can we stop this guy, he's a menace?" That was there, too. And that's what made the trade so appealing. It's not often you can trade for someone who's worth half as much four months later.

    Along those same lines, we aren't just trying to upset our fans, we're trying to confuse them. For instance, three years ago, I gave Kevin Ollie $15 million over five years. Now, he's a below-average guard with no real skills -- if you rated a point guard in eight different categories, he's probably a C-minus or below in each of them. If you're a Cavs fan, how are you supposed to react to that contract? Complete confusion, right? Well, those are good reactions. At least your fans are discussing the team. If the fans are talking about you, it doesn't matter if it's good or bad, at least they're talking.

    Layden: And there's another element here, Jim: You want the fans to feel like they could do a better job than you. When I was in New York, every Knicks fan thought they could do better than me. Every one of them. And they were probably right. Well, you know what that really means? There's a small piece inside of them that says, "If this schmuck can run the Knicks, maybe some day, I can run the Knicks." And once they think that, you have them for life. Those are the people who keep buying tickets and jerseys and hats.

    Simmons: Mitch, when you took over the Lakers, you had the best two players in the league and could have won 10 straight titles with the right moves. Instead, you couldn't get it done. Then you traded Shaq for 30 cents on the dollar; you gave cap-killing contracts to run-of-the-mill guys like Chris Mihm and Devean George; you blew all of your draft picks; you wasted the next three to four years of Kobe's prime by drafting a high school center over someone like Danny Granger, who could have helped right away; and then, you outdid yourself by trading Caron Butler and Chucky Atkins' useful expiring contract for Kwame Brown. But the Shaq-Kobe saga overshadowed everything; you haven't gotten enough credit for being a complete debacle. Does that bother you?

    Kupchak: I'd be lying if I said it didn't. When we made the Kwame trade, I was thinking to myself, "This is it, this is the one, now maybe people will start talking about me." Well, it didn't happen. Then the season starts, and Kwame's just a complete stiff … still, nothing. Then Phil [Jackson] goes on the record and calls Kwame a "p----." Nothing. People in Los Angeles just don't care. When you look at what I've done in L.A., it's amazing, really. I traded the best center in the history of basketball 19 months ago, and all we have to show for it is an unhappy Lamar Odom, Kwame and Brian Grant's eight-figure buyout. And yet, nobody mentions me. No offense, Isiah, but you don't realize how lucky you are -- when you screw up, everyone goes crazy. I built a team in which Smush Parker is our third-best player and the 10th-best guy on the Clippers would play 40 minutes a night for us -- yet does anyone ever talk about me? Of course not. It pisses me off.

    Thomas: And that's one of the reasons I wanted to work for the Knicks. When I screwed up in Toronto, nobody cared. When I ran the CBA into the ground, nobody cared. When I coached the Pacers and lost a series to Boston in which we had 10 of the best 12 players, nobody cared. In New York, they care. Right now, I'm working on a trade with Orlando where we give up Penny Hardaway's expiring deal and Trevor Ariza for Steve Francis. It's an illogical trade in every respect -- Francis' contract is terrible, there's no way he'll mesh with the other guys, he's never won anything, he gives us the same problems that Marbury gives us, it's a disaster right out of the gate. And that's what makes it so great. When we pull this trade off, New York fans might actually riot. I'm not kidding.

    Kupchak: Sure, Isiah, rub it in.

    (Everyone laughs.)

    Simmons: Isiah, don't you think you're almost too obvious at this point? At least we could see both sides with some of Mitch's moves. In your case …

    (Editor's note: Over the next 30 minutes, Simmons proceeded to list all of Isiah's terrible decisions since he took over the team in December 2003, in chronological order, as the crowd voraciously applauded each move, almost like how the president gets applauded over and over again during the State of the Union address. For space reasons, we're skipping to the tail end of Simmons' question.)

    Thanks to all of those moves, the Knicks have more untradable contracts than everyone else in the league combined; they won't be under the cap until 2009; they have a payroll that's $50 million higher than anyone else; and they won't have a high lottery pick until 2008 because of the Curry trade. So how can you sell this as a rebuilding effort when you don't have any picks, and how can you sell this as a move to contend when none of the current guys could possibly mesh?

    Isiah: That's an excellent question. The key is to make people believe you're trying something that's never been done before. In my case, I always try to acquire the best guy in the trade, regardless of whether it's a good deal or not -- then I can say I'm "stockpiling assets," which throws people off the trail a little bit. Then, I like to float big names to reporters … like right now, I'm making it seem like KG is a possibility for us, and that's why I'm gathering all of these assets. But I don't have a chance in hell of getting KG. If Minnesota trades KG, it's going to be for cap space, picks and young players, and we can't give them two of those three things. So they would never deal with us ---.

    McHale: I wouldn't be so sure about that!

    Isiah: Really?

    McHale: Have you seen some of the moves I have made? Name another GM who cost his team three first-round picks because he wanted to sign someone like Joe Smith to a max contract under the table! Name me another GM who would have willingly traded for Mark Blount, or given huge contracts to Marko Jaric and Troy Hudson, or signed sketchy character guys like Michael Olowokandi and Eddie Griffin! You don't think I would give KG away in a terrible trade? You're crazy! I resent that!

    Isiah: I didn't mean to offend you-.

    McHale: Well you did!

    Simmons: Kevin, let's talk about the Joe Smith debacle. What delighted me wasn't how you lost the picks, but that you were ready to give a max contract to the likes of Joe Smith. Does it hurt your feelings that nobody remembers how dumb this was?

    McHale: Of course, of course. At the time, Joe was a guy who gave you 13 points and eight rebounds a game -- solid, but not spectacular. We were willing to pay him twice as much as he was worth, we cheated, we got caught, we lost all those picks … and you never hear this mentioned. If we were a big-market team? Different story.

    Babcock: I have to disagree with that -- I think everyone can agree that I made the worst trade of the past 10 years.

    Simmons: The Vince Carter trade?

    Babcock: Right. I gave him away to the Nets. Gave him away. And I'm known for that now -- it didn't matter that I was working for Toronto. So you can have a negative impact on a small-market team, I think.

    (The crowd applauds.)

    Simmons: Let's talk about that trade, Rob. Walk us through your thought process.

    Babcock: When you're trading an unhappy superstar, like Isiah said before, you have to get one of three things back: Cap space, draft picks or young stars. Or else your fans will flip out. Especially if the guy immediately starts playing hard again, which was a mortal lock in Vince's case, because he was clearly tanking it for us. Anyway, my goal was to trade Vince without getting cap space, draft picks or another young star -- that's what would have made it the worst trade of all-time. The problem was that you can't be too obvious with this stuff or the commissioner's office will veto the deal. So what ended up happening was, the Nets gave us two non-lottery picks to save face, but everything else worked out -- not only did we not get a superstar back, we took on three bad contracts, including Alonzo Mourning's deal, which we had to buy out. So instead of getting cap space back, the trade hurt our cap space. I was more proud of that than anything.

    Weisbrod: You know, I loved that trade, but I loved the Rafael Araujo pick even more.

    Babcock: Thanks!

    Weisbrod: Passing up Andre Iguodala for a 24 year-old center who averaged 0.1 blocks per game in college and runs like a duck … I just thought that was brilliant.

    Babcock: Well, you hope with these things, but you never sure how they'll work out until they happen.

    Simmons: Let's talk about the draft, guys. What are some strategies there? Worst guy available? Taking someone at a position where you already have someone?

    King: See, that's where you're wrong. It's always better to make good picks in the draft -- this way, your fans can become attached to them, then you can trade them for inferior guys with bad contracts. Plus, it throws the media off your scent a little bit. I would much rather draft a decent guy, then trade him down the road, or overpay him with a crazy contract that makes no sense or kills my cap space. If you're openly tanking draft picks, it's too obvious.

    Thomas: I agree, Billy. If you look at what I've done over the years, I always drafted well: Stoudamire, T-Mac, Camby, Frye, Ariza … you want to stockpile as many assets as possible, only because it gives you more options to do something dumb.

    Babcock: I couldn't agree more. That's the single-biggest mistake I made with the Araujo pick. In retrospect, I should have taken Igoudala, kept him for a year, then traded him last summer for Joel Przybilla and immediately given him an $85 million contract extension. Oh, well. You live and you learn.

    McHale: I'm kicking myself right now … I wish someone had told me this before I drafted Ndudi Ebi and William Avery!

    (Everyone laughs.)

    Simmons: So if you don't want to kill your team with bad drafting, what other recourses are there besides trades?

    Thomas: Keep changing the roster -- you don't want any semblance of continuity. Once guys get used to playing with one another, they might start winning. Look at the teams that have done well over the last 25 years -- it's always been the teams that built around a nucleus. I even played for one in Detroit. That's why I like to keep mixing things up every six to seven weeks. Why chance it?

    King: I'm also a big fan of giving out absurd contracts that tie up your cap space, for three reasons. First, it drives the fans crazy and gets them talking about the team. Second, your fans won't complain that you aren't making any big moves, simply because you can't make any big moves, your lack of cap space prohibits you from getting quality guys unless they have baggage. And third, when people look back and try to put your reign in some sort of historical context, those salary numbers will jump out even more.
    Just look at what I've done in Philly: Since we made the 2001 Finals, I gave Mutombo a $68 million extension even though he could have been, like, 48 years old for all we knew. I gave $35.5 million to Aaron McKie. I gave $29 million to Eric Snow. I gave $18 million to Greg Buckner. I gave $40 million to Kenny Thomas and $25 million to Brian Skinner. I gave $25 million to Kyle Korver and $60 million to Sam Dalembert last summer. That's $300 million of contracts to guys who were either on the decline or never that good in the first place. Plus, I traded for other bad contracts, guys like Keith Van Horn, Glenn Robinson, Kevin Ollie, you name it. And then, last February, the pinnacle -- dumping three bad contracts for C-Webb, who everyone thought couldn't be traded because of his contract and because he ran with a limp. Now we have an aging team built around two past-their-prime stars and our cap space is killed through 2008. And we completely wasted Iverson's prime, when he was one of the best players of his generation.

    (The crowd applauds.)

    King: Thank you. Thank you very much.

    Thomas: Billy, if you start getting some heat, there's a way out -- you can sell the situation to your fans by telling them, "Even though these guys are overpaid, they're going to become very valuable in the last year of their contracts as trading chips." Of course, they don't know that the only star players that are ever available are guys like Marbury, Francis, Jalen, Baron Davis, Erick Dampier, Zach Randolph …

    (Isiah breaks up laughing.)

    Simmons: What about Vince?

    Kupchak: That was like the "Perfect Storm," really. You had a very good GM trading with a very bad GM. You had a superstar willing to shame the game of basketball and taint his entire career just to get traded. You had a small market team playing in relative obscurity, in a docile city where the fans really wouldn't revolt beyond a certain degree. I don't think we'll see that again.

    Paxson: I agree. In just about every case, if there's an expensive name available on the market, there are strings attached. If there weren't strings attached, why would their team be so anxious to trade them? Fundamentally, it makes no sense. For instance, if I offered you a 2003 Jaguar convertible with 12,000 miles on it for $5,000, then claimed nothing was wrong with the car, would you be a little suspicious? Or would you convince yourself that the car just needed a change of scenery? I don't know why the fans haven't figured this out yet -- name players are usually available for a reason.

    Thomas: That's why, as I said before, I like to float out rumors that we're "arming ourselves with assets" to make a run at guys we could never realistically get -- like KG, Kobe or LeBron -- because it gives our fans hope. They think we have a chance at those guys, when the teams that actually have a chance are the Bulls, Clippers, Hornets, Bobcats, Celtics or anyone else with valuable young players and multiple picks. You really think I could get KG this summer for Jalen's contract, Channing Frye, David Lee and a 2012 No. 1 pick? Come on.

    McHale: You're doing it again, it's like you're deliberately testing me.

    Thomas: Whoops, my bad.

    McHale (hushes voice): Wait, Jalen, Frye, Lee and a 2012 pick … would that be an unprotected pick?

    Simmons: Guys, guys, wait until after the summit.

    Weisbrod: Lemme chime in here … you can always disguise a terrible trade by blaming either the luxury tax or a lack of cap space as your reason, like when the Celtics ended up getting stuck with Vin Baker a few years ago, even though he was practically bringing a flask onto the court with him for the layup lines. But if you have an unhappy superstar, you're better off trying to mend fences with him over dealing him, that's the one thing fans won't forgive.

    Simmons: You learned that the hard way with the Tracy McGrady trade, right?

    Weisbrod: I sure did. That ended up being your classic three quarters for a dollar trade -- we got Francis, Mobley and Cato for him, or as I liked to call it, "the pu pu platter." For the purposes of destroying a team, it worked fine. But I underestimated how much Orlando fans liked Tracy -- they were just furious with me, I ended up getting death threats and everything.

    Layden: Cool!

    Weisbrod: Yeah, apparently that was a first for the league.

    (Crowd applauds.)

    Weisbrod: But I went too far -- you don't want to end up losing your job because of one trade, and that's what happened to me. I have a lot of regrets about the whole thing. I had six or seven more horrible moves in me.

    Simmons: What about acquiring guys with personal problems who could potentially screw up your team chemistry? How important is that?
    McHale: Oh, it's huge, there's no question. Look at my team right now -- it's like a crazier, more dysfunctional version of the team from "The Fish That Saved Pittsburgh." Crazy is good. Crazy players can throw off the fans because they can say, "Wow, on paper, we look fantastic, the only question is chemistry." But that's the thing -- a good NBA team is 50 percent talent and 50 percent chemistry: Look at Phoenix right now, they're getting it done with two All-Stars and parts that nobody else wanted. How? Chemistry, that's how. On the flip side, if you don't have good chemistry, you're going to lose. Look at my Ricky Davis trade -- we're 4-9 with him, and in 12 of those 13 games, he took more shots than KG. Eventually, they're going to fight to the death. You think I didn't know this when I traded for him?

    Thomas: I'm with Kevin -- you can never have enough problem guys. When Vin Baker was bought out by Boston because of his drinking problems, we jumped on him. When Qyntel Woods bounced around because he used to fight pit bulls, we jumped on him. I'm even thinking about having Chris Andersen move in with me -- I want to make sure I'm the first one there when his suspension ends.

    (Everyone laughs.)

    Simmons: Scott Layden, you were really a pioneer of sorts in terms of screwing up cap space and taking on terrible contracts.

    Layden: Why thank you.

    Simmons: You traded for cap-killers like Glen Rice, Luc Longley, Travis Knight, Shandon Anderson and Howard Eisley. You gave Allan Houston $100 million when he couldn't have gotten more than $71 million anywhere else. You gave Charlie Ward $28 million. You traded Marcus Camby and a lottery pick that could have been Amare Stoudamire for Antonio McDyess and his bum knee. By the time you got canned, they were a lottery team. Looking back, did you go overboard? Were you too incompetent?

    Layden: Oh, absolutely. There's an art to being an atrocious GM -- you can't just destroy a team without leaving any semblance of hope. By the time I got fired, we had one of the highest payrolls in the league and no real assets other than Houston and Sprewell, who weren't even All-Stars. So Knicks fans were depressed, but even worse, they couldn't look at the team and say, "Well, this guy's a name, and we have this guy, and maybe we can trade this guy … " All the hope had been beaten out of them.
    To me, that's the beauty of what Isiah has been able to pull off. Casual hoops fans can look at the Knicks' roster and say, "Wow, we have Marbury, Eddy Curry and Jalen Rose?!" Diehard fans can look at the roster and say, "This is just crazy enough that it might work," or "Maybe we can package some of these guys for a superstar." So there's a little bit of hope there, even if it's misguided, ridiculous and inane. When I was there? No hope whatsoever. And that was my biggest mistake.

    Simmons: So you like what Isiah has done?

    Layden: Hell, yeah. Take the Francis trade, if it happens: Logically, it makes no sense because Francis and Marbury are the same player -- expensive, shoot-first point guards with huge entourages and attitude problems who have never won anything. Even if you're getting Francis for nothing, it still makes no sense on paper.

    For example, let's say you spent $3,000 on a living room sofa two years ago that you didn't really like. To make the sofa stand out a little less, you bought a leather chair for $2,200 that doesn't match --.

    Simmons: Marbury is the sofa and Jamal Crawford is the chair in this case?
    Layden: Precisely. And the room still looks bad. So now, you're on Craigslist and you see that someone is selling another $3,000 sofa for $900 that's almost exactly like the sofa you have. And there's no way you would ever want two big, ugly sofas in the same room. It would just look ridiculous. But your mind-set is, "Hey, how can I turn down a $3,000 sofa for $900?" So you buy the sofa and stick it in the room, which is now cluttered with stuff since you also spent another $10,000 on some crummy art, a coffee table with support problems, two giant bookcases that have to be turned sideways, some wobbly end tables and a smashed sculpture that was patched back together with duck tape. But since it's too late to go back, you spend another $5,000 on an interior decorator to make the room work. Well, you know what would happen? He wouldn't be able to make it work. You bought too much crap.

    See, this is why Isiah is a genius: He's assembling the basketball version of that nightmare living room, and he has the fans convinced that either the expensive interior decorator -- in this case, Larry Brown -- will be able to make everything work, or he can somehow swap some of that furniture to one of his neighbors for a first-class piece of art. And he's spending an ungodly amount of money! And you never hear rumors that he might get fired! I think it's a tribute to him and his staff. He's the best-ever at being an atrocious GM. He really is.

    Thomas: Thank you, Scott, that means a lot.

    Simmons: Lemme ask you, Isiah -- the one red flag seems to be that you're spending an alarming amount of money. Just this year alone, you have a $123 million payroll for 15 wins. When the luxury tax kicks in, you will have shelled out nearly $200 million for a 25-win team. Doesn't fiscal responsibility matter here?

    (There's a beat, and then everyone laughs.)

    Simmons: I guess not! Mitch Kupchak, Rob Babcock, Scott Layden, Kevin McHale, Billy King, John Weisbrod, Jim Paxson and Isiah Thomas … thanks for your time! Ladies and gentlemen, the most atrocious GMs of the decade!

    (The crowd applauds wildly.)

    Simmons: Guys, what do you say we cap this off with a high-stakes poker game back in my hotel room, just the nine of us? Seriously, what do you say?


    Pretty please?
  20. professorjay

    professorjay Contributing Member

    Oct 20, 2006
    Likes Received:
    I'm w/ everyone else, Greg Anthony is a monster idiot. His 'analysis' sucks. It's obvious he just says what ever the general media says in the daily sports pages. It drove me crazy evertime he said something about the Rockets since he was way off. I bet when he talks about Yao he'll stil say 'he needs emotion, he's still not used to the American game, he needs to be aggressive, I'm still living in 2004 and don't know anything about everything." But is Isiah for real? This is the NBA. You can't take criticism over your draft pick? Everyone in the league gets criticized day-in and day-out over everything. Deal w/ it. Or maybe he knew he couldn't argue over his crappy trades or harrassment suit so this is the battle he picks.

Share This Page

  • About ClutchFans

    Since 1996, ClutchFans has been loud and proud covering the Houston Rockets, helping set an industry standard for team fan sites. The forums have been a home for Houston sports fans as well as basketball fanatics around the globe.

  • Support ClutchFans!

    If you find that ClutchFans is a valuable resource for you, please consider becoming a Supporting Member. Supporting Members can upload photos and attachments directly to their posts, customize their user title and more. Gold Supporters see zero ads!

    Upgrade Now