Xatticus wrote:I thought it was a really poor game. The pass that was picked off by Kuminga was just a dreadful play. It was probably a full 2-point swing in the outcome of the game. It reduced the EV of that possession by about a point and increased the value of the ensuing possession for GS by about a point. It's a losing play.
I was also a bit surprised by how much space he was giving to shooters. I saw him as comparable to Mikal Bridges at the defensive end. If he has to give up that much space to prevent guys from getting past him, then that sort of defensive ceiling is probably outside of his reach. You generally prefer to give up that long shot, but he was sagging too far to contest.
All of that said, I'm not making anything out of that performance. I said I wouldn't complain about the pick, so I won't. He wasn't my preference, but I think he will be just fine in the long run. For those out here that were expecting more from him offensively, this is what he is. If you expect more from him, you are just projecting hope. I'm not saying he can't improve, but this is what he is.
I wanted Sengun. I thought it was an easy decision. I'll try not to bring it up on a nightly basis. The problem with Wagner at 8 is that you can get that sort of player much later. If you press me to answer who will be better in the long run between Murphy and Wagner, I probably have to give the edge to Murphy because he is just a much better shooter. I know that Wagner is quite a bit younger, but I'm not sure what skills you expect him to add or improve, so I don't really see the upside.
Ehhh I wouldn't say I agree on the defensive side of things. Particularly the contesting jumpers part. I thought for the most part he was great on Kuminga. A couple of GSW's scrubby non-NBA guys I think took him by surprise by actually shooting when he expected them to not shoot, but I wouldn't say he was giving them a lot of space because he was scared they blow by him.
That DHO turnover was definitely his worst play by a mile. Not only was the turnover really terrible, but he was too scared to shoot the open jumper right before that. To his credit, that was really the only possession that he really passed up an open jump shot.
I do think if the plan is to use him as a spot shooter 75-80% of the possessions, then he's going to disappoint unless there's a significant uptick in his 3PT shot. He's just not nearly as natural of a shooter as Moody or Duarte or Murphy.
The Magic are going to have to utilize him more as a ball handler initiating ball screens, as a screener who can make plays in pick and pop or on the short roll and as a passer from the elbows.
If they're not going to do that, then he's gonna be a 3&D guy without a consistent 3 yet.
Now look... are we over-analyzing one summer league game? Of course we are.
But I think Wagner is a lot like Barnes in the respect that if you don't utilize the things he *can* do, then you're doing him and your team a disservice.