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Time to fire Olshey and Stotts?

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Re: Time to fire Olshey and Stotts? 

Post#121 » by Wizenheimer » Sun Sep 27, 2020 4:16 pm

I would be just fine with Stotts being gone. I think Portland should clean out the house a bit and send Olshey, Stotts, and CJ out of town

that said, Stotts can only use the tools in his toolbox, and that box has been missing some essential tools since he was hired. That's not his fault. Sure, there are valid criticisms of his offensive and defensive schemes, but too often Stotts has been forced to bring knives to a gunfight

but ultimately, Portland is just a pretender, not a contender; and it looks like they will remain at that level as long as Olshey is around. Unfortunately, Olshey's job is being salvaged by Dame's greatness, which means he's burning thru Dame's prime collecting his million dollar salaries; that's a horrible deal for everyone but Olshey. Portland isn't going to scheme their way into contention; they won't be able to adjust and tweak their way to a title; there's no trophy waiting as long as the Blazers are content to simply try out new players in the lower levels of the rotation. Portland desperately needs another elite talent at the top of the rotation. Different role players don't solve that foundational flaw
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Re: Time to fire Olshey and Stotts? 

Post#122 » by JasonStern » Sun Sep 27, 2020 8:12 pm

I'll bite. Stotts is underrated. Guy is probably the 8th to 12th best coach in the league. Definitely above average. Wizenheimer might point out that the 2016 Blazers team he lead that beat the Clippers beat a depleted Clippers team down 2/3 of their stars, but that over-simplifies things by missing the fact that a:

Lillard/Frazier
McCollum/Connaughton
Henderson/Crabbe
Aminu/Davis/Vonleh
Plumlee/Leonard

...team shouldn't have even made the playoffs in the west. Stotts' main downfall is he's an offensive-minded coach with a fixed system that, at times, more times than most would like, fails to adapt when defenses shut down his game plan, which typically over-relies on Dame. But more importantly, as we saw this season, he really needs to be paired with an above average defensive minded assistant head coach, which the Blazers have recently lacked.

So you can look at replacing Stotts, but odds are you will replace him with someone worse. If there were chemistry issues between Stotts and his players, then sure - make a move. But you don't risk pissing Dame off by bringing in a Mo Cheeks or Nate McMillan in the hopes it works out when adds are and history has proven you don't have a great chance of doing so.

Olshey is entirely different. He's probably an 18th to 22nd best GM in the league. That means if you get a completely average GM, you're likely getting an upgrade. And there might be some truth to Paul Allen pushing Olshey into making certain moves or drafting certain players, making him seem worse than he actually is. But Olshey's name was still on every move. If he had a better plan, he should have used his charisma to articulate it to ownership.

Being critical of Olshey isn't something new. And having a ~10th best coach paired with a ~20th best GM isn't a recipe for a championship. But usually, the coach goes before the GM goes. So changing the coach just for the sake of changing the coach would likely backfire. Replacing the entire staff isn't likely to happen until the on-court performance demands it. So I guess just enjoy Dame's prime while it lasts.
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Re: Time to fire Olshey and Stotts? 

Post#123 » by HoopsFanAZ » Sun Sep 27, 2020 8:58 pm

Hire an unyielding assistant coach for D, rebounding, and grit.
Stotts and Olshey look like Teflon for next season. Hire Udoka as a well paid assistant.

[When is Spoelstra’s contract up?]
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Re: Time to fire Olshey and Stotts? 

Post#124 » by Wizenheimer » Mon Sep 28, 2020 4:58 am

JasonStern wrote:And there might be some truth to Paul Allen pushing Olshey into making certain moves or drafting certain players, making him seem worse than he actually is.


Paul Allen wasn't pushing Olshey when Olshey traded for Bazemore; or when Tolliver was signed; or when Hezonja was signed. Those deals look a lot like most of the dumbass moves Portland has made in Olshey's tenure

PA didn't make Olshey say Meyers Leonard could be an all-star; or say that Simons was the most gifted player he'd ever drafted.

it was always funny how Olshey apologists wanted to blame PA for the bad moves Portland made with Olshey in charge....how PA was 'micro-managing' the Blazers. The irony is if PA was responsible for the bad moves, he was also responsible for the good moves.
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Re: Time to fire Olshey and Stotts? 

Post#125 » by JasonStern » Mon Sep 28, 2020 5:54 pm

Wizenheimer wrote:
JasonStern wrote:And there might be some truth to Paul Allen pushing Olshey into making certain moves or drafting certain players, making him seem worse than he actually is.


Paul Allen wasn't pushing Olshey when Olshey traded for Bazemore; or when Tolliver was signed; or when Hezonja was signed. Those deals look a lot like most of the dumbass moves Portland has made in Olshey's tenure

PA didn't make Olshey say Meyers Leonard could be an all-star; or say that Simons was the most gifted player he'd ever drafted.

it was always funny how Olshey apologists wanted to blame PA for the bad moves Portland made with Olshey in charge....how PA was 'micro-managing' the Blazers. The irony is if PA was responsible for the bad moves, he was also responsible for the good moves.


You know I'm not an Olshey apologist. But it's not unreasonable to believe that Paul Allen was pretty hands-on as an owner, and that might have affected some of the moves made. Be it not trading young talent for fear of another Jermaine O'Neal situation, or going "all-in" a bit early in 2016. And given his love of the game and health issues, I don't blame him there. And I have no problem giving ownership credit for the good moves.

But at the same point, you make it seem like Olshey has made no good moves during his tenure. That narrative is inherently inaccurate. Throw enough darts at the board, something is bound to stick.

So the three crippling moves in 2016 were Crabbe, Ezili, and Turner. Crabbe was young and coming off a good season. The Nets had no picks, no talent, but plenty of cap space. I see why they made that offer. And I understand why Portland, that had given up assets to get the pick used to draft Crabbe and then spent years developing him, didn't want to let him walk for nothing.

But that's where the Ezili and Turner moves get rather questionable. We're pre-Nurkić, so I see why going after a "center of the future" seemed like a good idea. But Ezili was given nearly $10M a season despite being a 7ppg/5rpg big that was already injured coming into a franchise that has had zero success with injury prone bigs. The move was incredibly high risk at the time and it clearly didn't pan out.

And then there's Turner. We all know the story about how Portland overpaid so high that Turner thought he was getting pranked. Seriously think about that. Now look at the offense Stotts wants to run and look at the Blazers' roster at the time. Those rookie scale contracts would, over the course of those contracts, start coming off of the books. And the declining payment contracts of Davis and Aminu, as well played as they were, were role player level contracts.

And then you had Batum. I get why Batum was traded. It was the end of the Aldridge era. Batum was about to get paid. He's been one of the worst contracts for a while now. But he was still young enough to be a part of this Lillard core. While his individual contract could be argued as the second worst behind Ezili, is overpaying Batum really worse than Crabbe, Ezili, and Turner? Overpays are only bad if you do something better with the cap space. And I'm not sure Portland did anything better than a 15ppg/5rpg/5apg defensive wing.

So this is where I put the blame entirely on Olshey. If you did one of the three Crabbe/Ezili/Turner moves, then worst case you have a bad contract that you can maneuver around. You aren't stretching players. You aren't using second round picks to get rid of players. Your core at the time was young enough that you had time before truly contending, and you could be patient before making a big-splash move. Going all-in bringing in a Blake Griffin/Kevin Love or simply eating an Andre Drummond contract is a bad idea. And yet the ceiling for such a move would have still been so much higher than Crabbe/Ezili/Turner.

So even if Paul was pushing for making a move and doing something, the GM still is responsible for providing ownership with "here's what's available", and if what's available is Crabbe/Ezili/Turner, then as a GM, you need to be able to convince ownership why doing nothing is probably better than doing something.

But I don't think Olshey had a bad 2019 off-season. Did as good of a job as one could expect given the situation he was in and the assets he had available. But that doesn't exempt him from the fact that he got himself into that situation in the first place.

---

I liked the Bazermore trade. We had three years of seeing that Evan Turner did not fit in Stotts' offense. Instead, he traded a player that needed the ball in his hands to be effective for a lower usage shooter. And when that didn't pan out, Bazemore became the salary filler in an Ariza+Gabriel+Swanigan trade. If Gabriel pans out long-term, even in a limited backup role, the Blazers won that trade. And his bubble performance showed that's not unrealistic.

If the roster had remained healthy, Tolliver and Hezonja wouldn't, or at least shouldn't, be getting minutes. They were also minimum contracts, and it's not like there are a lot of great players for the minimum that were lining up to sign with Portland had they not signed Tolliver and Hezonja.

We've seen enough Olshey reclamation projects to understand why he took a flyer on Hezonja. But the second year player option is looking like it's going to haunt me for another year. Not understanding the point of that. I guess for Early Bird rights, but then why not make it a team option? If he was worth retaining, then he wouldn't pick up the option, so the Early Bird rights would be useless. I can't imagine there being a number of teams that Portland was competing with to sign him. Just seems like the Blazers got played by his agent there...

Meyers Leonard is the first Blazers era Olshey pick to make the Finals. So there's that.
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Re: Time to fire Olshey and Stotts? 

Post#126 » by zzaj » Mon Sep 28, 2020 6:14 pm

I predict the Blazers don't come close to sniffing the POs next season in a COMPLETELY stacked West, and both Stotts and Olshey will be let go.
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Re: Time to fire Olshey and Stotts? 

Post#127 » by Epicurus » Mon Sep 28, 2020 7:52 pm

zzaj wrote:I predict the Blazers don't come close to sniffing the POs next season in a COMPLETELY stacked West, and both Stotts and Olshey will be let go.
One day this perennial prediction will come true. Heretofore, despite similar predictions, the Stotts/Lillard combo find a way to get into the POs.

I'll offer a counter prediction, the rebounding next season will shore up, this year's development projects will pan out next season, and the Blazers will again win 50 games plus, with at least the fifth highest offensive ratings, and a defensive rating in the middle of the pack. Yet Stotts will not request an extension beyond existing one, as he chooses to do other life interests in his 64th year. Thereby, the Stotts haters in two seasons can live happily ever after with this dreadful spot on the franchise in the sunset. NO, on the other hand, stays until two straight non playoff years in the immediate post-Stotts era.
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Re: Time to fire Olshey and Stotts? 

Post#128 » by JasonStern » Mon Sep 28, 2020 9:05 pm

HoopsFanAZ wrote:When is Spoelstra’s contract up?


Spoelstra would be a great get and he has Portland ties! Unfortunately, I can't see him leaving Miami until at least Riley retires. And even then, he might either take Riley's place or be set so long as Micky Arison owns the Heat.
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Re: Time to fire Olshey and Stotts? 

Post#129 » by Wizenheimer » Mon Sep 28, 2020 9:14 pm

JasonStern wrote:But at the same point, you make it seem like Olshey has made no good moves during his tenure. That narrative is inherently inaccurate. Throw enough darts at the board, something is bound to stick.
.


you're right, that narrative is false because I have repeatedly credited Olshey for the good moves he has made such as trading for Nurkic or signing Kanter mid-season or trading for Hood, or his seeming mastery of the 2nd round in the draft. I've also repeatedly credited him for being great rooting around in bargain bins. When a team just wants to dump a player for next to nothing, Olshey is often 1st in line

but I'm also aware of the context of many of the moves. For instance, that he was on the edge of trading Plumlee for Jahlil Okofor before Denver added a 1st to their proposal. Olshey even said that trade wasn't as much about Nurkic as it was about being able to punt a rookie extension another year down the road

but the bad outweighs the good in my view, starting with his pathological, franchise-stifling love affairs with 'his guys', like CJ and Meyers and Zach and Simons.

he's been on the job for 8 years and Portland is still a pretender. Dame's greatness is keeping Olshey in his multi-million dollar salary, but at the same time, Dame's prime is burning away. And Portland appears further away from contending then they were at the end of 2014, 6 years ago. That's management failure, not success.
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Re: Time to fire Olshey and Stotts? 

Post#130 » by HoopsFanAZ » Tue Sep 29, 2020 12:44 am

JasonStern wrote:
HoopsFanAZ wrote:When is Spoelstra’s contract up?


Spoelstra would be a great get and he has Portland ties! Unfortunately, I can't see him leaving Miami until at least Riley retires. And even then, he might either take Riley's place or be set so long as Micky Arison owns the Heat.


Both Udoka and Spoelstra are Portland guys. Basketball lifers. So I've been biased in their favor for a long time. The year that Portland won the lottery had Udoka celebrating on camera ... and then he was gone in the offseason. I choose to look at it as the basketball gods taking issue with Portland not keeping him and whacking Oden's knees.

As to next season ... with help from the basketball gods' medical staff, Portland will be healthy ... and 50+ wins for home court in the playoffs. The defense improves (as stated above) to middle of the pack. Fortunately, or unfortunately, Stotts thinks he's Jerry Sloan and stays just long enough for when Spoelstra tires of beaches and the sun to return to Portland.
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Re: Time to fire Olshey and Stotts? 

Post#131 » by Sinobas » Tue Sep 29, 2020 2:47 pm

Get Doc Rivers. I know he seems like kind of an ****, but he got a lot out of his players, which is the mark of a good coach in my book.
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Re: Time to fire Olshey and Stotts? 

Post#132 » by Epicurus » Tue Sep 29, 2020 5:02 pm

Sinobas wrote:Get Doc Rivers. I know he seems like kind of an ****, but he got a lot out of his players, which is the mark of a good coach in my book.
Then you must love Stotts as every year he has a team that outperforms preseason expert predictions. He and Lillard have done a damn good job of making lemonade when given more than a few lemons. Imagine the Blazers this past season if they got George and K. Leonard to replace Aminu and Harkness. I bet they would have done much much better than Rivers' Clippers.
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Re: Time to fire Olshey and Stotts? 

Post#133 » by DeBlazerRiddem » Tue Sep 29, 2020 6:24 pm

Sinobas wrote:Get Doc Rivers. I know he seems like kind of an ****, but he got a lot out of his players, which is the mark of a good coach in my book.


What's the opposite of an And1? I think people like Doc are organizational poison. Their arrogance and hunger for power cause them to push out other qualified people, they always leave strife behind them. Its like the dude in the pickup game who is a ball hog who doesn't think anyone else should be taking shots.
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Re: Time to fire Olshey and Stotts? 

Post#134 » by jeffhardyfan52 » Mon Oct 5, 2020 11:27 pm

I’m all aboard the fire Olshey train. Have been for a few years.

Stotts has done wonders with just a absolute roster of garbage every single year
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Re: Time to fire Olshey and Stotts? 

Post#135 » by DaVoiceMaster » Wed Oct 7, 2020 1:10 pm

Does anybody think Olshey bolts for LA? I don't think Balmer owned the team when he was there last so I don't know if that helps or hurts any chance he might have to go back there if he so desired.
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Re: Time to fire Olshey and Stotts? 

Post#136 » by HoopsFanAZ » Wed Oct 7, 2020 5:26 pm

1. Other than Stotts not stopping runs by the opposing team when the Blazers are up (with time outs and sub out the trash), I'm good with him staying. That's not a ringing endorsement, but the D and rebounding should be back to middle of the pack or better with Nurkic and Collins healthy. Ariza and Hood helping out. Even Carmelo getting some boards. The O will be stronger.

2. Other than Olshey not YET finding a strong trade for CJ in a package, I'm good with his draft picks, okay (on balance) with his trades and signings, and impressed with his ability to stay on message ... though also mildly annoying. Since he won't be able to do massive and/or multiple overpays at this point, his negatives are minimized.

So, I'll go all in with a toe in the water -- Stotts and Olshey stay for another year, I'll be good with the DPs, and happy when CJ is traded. [Okay, I'll qualify my happiness with the DPs ... so long as no undersized shooting guard is drafted (less than 6'5) and no PG not named Tyrell Terry (guy can shoot), Haliburton (on a trade up), or Pritchard (at 46). I'm good with a couple bigs and several of the SFs][Not a fan of anyone predicted to go in the top 4]
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Re: Time to fire Olshey and Stotts? 

Post#137 » by DaVoiceMaster » Sun Oct 11, 2020 8:49 pm

I think if Stotts and/or Olshey were going to be fired, it'd be done by now. That means, unless they quit for some reason, they'll be back next season. It is what it is. I don't know that I care too much about the draft, but Olshey needs to make a splash in the FA market this offseason. Find a quality FA and give em the full MLE, but don't repeat 2016!!! It'd be nice if they could utilize the Bazemore TPE, as well. Splash Olshey, make a splash!
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Re: Time to fire Olshey and Stotts? 

Post#138 » by Epicurus » Sun Oct 11, 2020 11:41 pm

DaVoiceMaster wrote:I think if Stotts and/or Olshey were going to be fired, it'd be done by now. That means, unless they quit for some reason, they'll be back next season. It is what it is. I don't know that I care too much about the draft, but Olshey needs to make a splash in the FA market this offseason. Find a quality FA and give em the full MLE, but don't repeat 2016!!! It'd be nice if they could utilize the Bazemore TPE, as well. Splash Olshey, make a splash!
Since Stotts just bought a new house in the Portland area, I doubt if he plans to quit.
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Re: Time to fire Olshey and Stotts? 

Post#139 » by Sinobas » Mon Oct 12, 2020 1:29 am

I wonder of Jody Allen cares enough to fire them as long as they are getting mediocre results.
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Re: Time to fire Olshey and Stotts? 

Post#140 » by JasonStern » Mon Oct 12, 2020 4:32 am

Sinobas wrote:I wonder of Jody Allen cares enough to fire them as long as they are getting mediocre results.


Results probably matter much less than remaining profitable. Might be some flexibility this year due to COVID, but long term I would be shocked if the Paul Allen Foundation's goals are to lose money running a basketball team.
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