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Seismic Shift in the East: Thomas Bryant a Wizard

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Re: Seismic Shift in the East: Thomas Bryant a Wizard 

Post#281 » by payitforward » Fri Jul 26, 2019 12:39 pm

Interesting. Giannis is a single data point; it'd be worth looking into this a bit across years/teams BL has been on.
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Re: Seismic Shift in the East: Thomas Bryant a Wizard 

Post#282 » by payitforward » Fri Jul 26, 2019 12:43 pm

gtn130 wrote:I will say this again since it doesn't appear to have hit home yet, but 3pt shooting centers are wildly overrated in a league that doesn't punish anyone for lack of size....

But... but... but... weren't you just puffing up Brook Lopez? For his 3-point shooting?

Now you've changed your mind?
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Re: Seismic Shift in the East: Thomas Bryant a Wizard 

Post#283 » by gtn130 » Fri Jul 26, 2019 12:50 pm

Illmatic12 wrote:
nate33 wrote:
gtn130 wrote:
I mean, maybe, but the point stands that the market decided Bryant isn't worth all that much. Milwaukee could have offered Thomas Bryant 3/30 instead of 4/50 for Brook Lopez at 31 years old.


Lou Williams is obviously way underpaid and his agent should be fired considering Lou Williams opted into a paycut this offseason. Tangential, but Lou Williams' contract negotiations have been mystifying.

It was an unusually suppressed market for big men with lots of supply and minimal demand. The teams with cap room already had a center - except New York who spent their money on Julius Randle. (Which was a mistake. Bryant is going to be a better player than Randle.) Also, Bryant was a RFA and teams didn't want to tie up money on an offer sheet.

Furthermore there are CBA limits on the type of offer sheet Bryant could receive (not sure if this has been mentioned)

Since he was a 2nd round pick he’d be in the same situation as Jeremy Lin a few years back , in order to pay him more than ~$9M AAV a team would have had to offer him a 4yr poison pill contract that is backloaded. It wouldn’t have been an easy task for another team to construct an offer sheet that would make the Wizards think twice about matching.

If he was an unrestricted FA we can assume his market would have been much different.


Ok but like what if Thomas Bryant was a better player and teams decided to just pay him more?

This isn't complicated - Thomas Bryant was low on the rest of the league's priority list. This is a fact. Obviously there's a limit to how much teams could pay Bryant and how they could structure the deal since he's an RFA but the fact remains that teams weren't lining up to sign him. Malcolm Brogdon, also an RFA former second rounder, just signed for $20m per year.

If Zion Williamson was a free agent teams would move mountains to free up cap space. Thomas Bryant moved the needle for zero teams.
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Re: Seismic Shift in the East: Thomas Bryant a Wizard 

Post#284 » by gtn130 » Fri Jul 26, 2019 12:54 pm

payitforward wrote:
gtn130 wrote:I will say this again since it doesn't appear to have hit home yet, but 3pt shooting centers are wildly overrated in a league that doesn't punish anyone for lack of size....

But... but... but... weren't you just puffing up Brook Lopez? For his 3-point shooting?

Now you've changed your mind?


No, I went to great lengths to differentiate 3pt shooters like Brook Lopez from guys like Bryant and Embiid (as a shooter). There's a difference between being capable of hitting a wide open trailing 3 once a game and being a shooter who needs to tightly guarded out to the 3pt line.

People see that Bryant has a nice looking stroke and makes 3s at a passable rate and assume that it's a super valuable quality, but it's not all that valuable until he's actually creating space with his shooting.
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Re: Seismic Shift in the East: Thomas Bryant a Wizard 

Post#285 » by payitforward » Fri Jul 26, 2019 12:56 pm

gtn130 wrote:PIF we've had some variant of this argument for years now. You want to sort by TS% and ignore all context, but that really doesn't work in basketball and you should rethink your approach.

& you want to pick guys you like for arbitrary reasons, & guys you dislike for arbitrary reasons, & then construct narratives out of whole cloth to support your point.

Not to mention that all you look at really is scoring -- hence assuming I "sort by TS%" when, obviously, I look at every number generated by every aspect of playing the game. Guys who are good at all those numbers are good players -- teams who are good at all those numbers are good teams.

A perfect example of your made-up narrative is the claim that GS starts Draymond at Center. Not true. & if so, who starts at the 4? Kevin Durant, I guess? Then... who starts at the 3? No one.

Actually, last year Looney, Bell, Cousins, Jones & Bogut combined for 3600 minutes. What position did they play?
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Re: Seismic Shift in the East: Thomas Bryant a Wizard 

Post#286 » by gtn130 » Fri Jul 26, 2019 1:00 pm

payitforward wrote:
gtn130 wrote:
payitforward wrote:In his entire career, Brook Lopez has never had a season as good as Thomas Bryant's rookie year. Including last season.

I mean this is just obviously and objectively wrong, man.

No, it's just obviously & objectively right.


All right, so is the rest of the thread in agreement that Thomas Bryant is unquestionably better than Brook Lopez and always has been? Genuinely curious if this is where we're at.
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Re: Seismic Shift in the East: Thomas Bryant a Wizard 

Post#287 » by gtn130 » Fri Jul 26, 2019 1:17 pm

payitforward wrote:A perfect example of your made-up narrative is the claim that GS starts Draymond at Center. Not true. & if so, who starts at the 4? Kevin Durant, I guess? Then... who starts at the 3? No one.

Actually, last year Looney, Bell, Cousins, Jones & Bogut combined for 3600 minutes. What position did they play?


PIF, this is a legitimately terrible post. Here's what I actually said:

gtn130 wrote:There is no Shaq in this league, and the dominant team of this era features a "center" who is 6'7.


I simply never said GS starts Draymond at center, so this screed of yours is a massive waste of everyone's time. Further, if I did in fact say that, it would actually be completely fine and the argument you'd be making would just be pedantic and annoying.

GS played 178 minutes last year with Draymond at the 5. It was their best lineup by Net Rating by a huge margin. Draymond at the 5 has been their best lineup for five seasons now. It's often referred to as the Death Lineup, you may have heard of it, but maybe not - it's not something that appears in bref tables, so maybe it doesn't exist in your world, idk.

So while I never actually said GS starts Draymond at center, he is their best center in the best lineup in the league, maybe league history, and has been since 2015.

So, great posting PIF. Really quality stuff.
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Re: Seismic Shift in the East: Thomas Bryant a Wizard 

Post#288 » by doclinkin » Fri Jul 26, 2019 1:51 pm

gtn130 wrote:
payitforward wrote:
gtn130 wrote:I mean this is just obviously and objectively wrong, man.

No, it's just obviously & objectively right.


All right, so is the rest of the thread in agreement that Thomas Bryant is unquestionably better than Brook Lopez and always has been? Genuinely curious if this is where we're at.


No man. You're saying you are unexcited by Bryant and think he has low utility in this league unless he can shoot as well or better than Brook. You dislike his defense and doubt his potential on that end. And as such he is about worth his contract at best and is not worth pinning any hopes on. You feel like efficiency stats are skewed for low-usage players since teams are not scheming to stop them, therefore players like Brook who was forced to create his own offense as a high lotto pick will have lower per possession stats and the numbers nerd fans will ignore that fact and strut around with statistics as if they invented them. You're saying lets don't conflate efficiency with production since he might be that good with 100 possessions, but he's not getting those hundred possesions any time soon.

Right? Fair recap?

The counter argument is given by fans who are excited about his potential since statistically he is already starting out better than Brook Lopez in at least one low-usage category -- even if by your argument you throw away all his other stats. Brook hit 1 three point shot in seven years in the league. Bryant hit 33 last year and looks comfortable in Summer play when being set up by his new teammate IT. It hasn't taken him 7 years to learn that shot. He's starting out pretty good there.

The word 'potential' implies upside, possible improvement. You're not excited by him _yet_ okay. Fans who like him as a player and like the signing are saying, he's not done yet. Given his age and attitude -- and in comparison with other players who were that productive that young-- he looks like he has a chance to be a good player. All he needs to reps and experience. And, where I agree with you, someone to get him the ball.

But if you watch footage of him, he's not standing around confused, he is moving to open space and runs on the break, keeps his hands up in traffic even in motion and is ready to catch and finish. He doesn't turn the ball over even in traffic. He's quick to react even if he's not the bounciest athlete. And when he gets the ball open outside he has no hitch in his shot or lack of confidence, he readily takes the three when he's open. 33 out of 99 shots is a good percentage for a 2nd year big. Statistically that's a lay-up. Take that shot.

He takes it. He's aggressive, not passive like other efficiency superstars (Otto Porter is our most recent example). If you get him the ball he tries to do something with it instead of shying away or deferring to someone else. So far he does so at a pretty reliable rate. He will dunk it and shout and stomp and flex and fire up his teammates and the crowd. Good, man, let's have more of that. Feed him and see what he can do.

So if Wiz fans are hopeful about the guy its because he's the sort of player we haven't had next to John Wall. Or Gilbert. Or anyone. He's not great, yet. But he's good in his role, and if he gets better, as hard working young players do, then he will earn even more possessions and increase that usage, --even in the three ball era. And the counter to the pace and space. He can hang with both, if he keeps developing in what he already does do well: He's an inside & outside option who finishes with good efficiency and doesn't turn it over. That makes point guards look good, even if he can't himself take over a game.

And to my eye, looking at the next level in the metagame, what Kawhi and the Raps just demonstrated: He lets us stay big and still keep pace with outside shots, still punish the small ball teams with interior scoring to control the pace, even if we are giving up those outside shots at the other end due to his challenged "laterality" and upright stance. But yeah, we need a Kawhi Leonard to make it work. A rebounding and defensive force who can play both outside and in on both ends. But I man, come on, who doesn't? Maybe we draft that guy this next lotto. Right?
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Re: Seismic Shift in the East: Thomas Bryant a Wizard 

Post#289 » by gtn130 » Fri Jul 26, 2019 2:03 pm

No, I just said that Brook Lopez is a bad comp. PIF then said that Thomas Bryant is a categorically better player and always has been, which is probably just PIF being pedantic about advanced numbers, but it's wrong in any reasonable sense.

My actual opinion of Bryant: he's irrelevant until he's a passable defender. This was my position the day the Wizards signed him. His advanced offensive numbers all look great, but it's a small sample and he's not asked to do much. Difficulty and quality of shot matters a lot.

I haven't looked at his shot chart, but I can't fathom he's taking the types of shots that other guys on Nate's list are (Jokic, AD, KAT, etc). There are also a number of guys on Nate's list who were never good offensive players - Dwight Howard was simply never a good offensive player except in PIF's bref universe. If your shot selection is limited to 0-2 feet around the basket and an occasional wide open 3 (In TB's case), your numbers are going to look pretty good.
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Re: Seismic Shift in the East: Thomas Bryant a Wizard 

Post#290 » by doclinkin » Fri Jul 26, 2019 2:17 pm

gtn130 wrote:No, I just said that Brook Lopez is a bad comp. PIF then said that Thomas Bryant is a categorically better player and always has been, which is probably just PIF being pedantic about advanced numbers, but it's wrong in any reasonable sense.

My actual opinion of Bryant: he's irrelevant until he's a passable defender. This was my position the day the Wizards signed him. His advanced offensive numbers all look great, but it's a small sample and he's not asked to do much. Difficulty and quality of shot matters a lot.

I haven't looked at his shot chart, but I can't fathom he's taking the types of shots that other guys on Nate's list are (Jokic, AD, KAT, etc). There are also a number of guys on Nate's list who were never good offensive players - Dwight Howard was simply never a good offensive player except in PIF's bref universe. If your shot selection is limited to 0-2 feet around the basket and an occasional wide open 3 (In TB's case), your numbers are going to look pretty good.


But that's his role though. Difficulty and quality of shot mean nothing if you have a good point guard to eliminate that part of the equation for you. As a pass dependent player like a traditional Big, your job on offense is to score when you get the ball and get in position to do so. Provide a reliable target and don't turn the ball over when they pass it to you Then finish.

In the new era it is also helpful to be a threat from outside so that the opposing Big defenders have to respect your range when you do post outside or catch the ball on the pick and pop. It's especially useful when you are playing with attack mode guards and wing players who thrive by attacking the lane. Triple that if your own PG doesn't really hit the three. But TB13 has the makings of that game as well.

Okay so your primary argument is that he needs to defend better before you respect him as a player. Cool. No argument there, unless you think its beyond his ability to improve. In which case we fighting again. He's 21. As long as he stays healthy and gets playing time. He'll get better. We have only Ian Mahinmi behind him and traded away Dwight since he is our starting 5. He will get all the reps he can handle this year.
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Re: Seismic Shift in the East: Thomas Bryant a Wizard 

Post#291 » by gtn130 » Fri Jul 26, 2019 2:31 pm

doclinkin wrote:But that's his role though. Difficulty and quality of shot mean nothing if you have a good point guard to eliminate that part of the equation for you. As a pass dependent player like a traditional Big, your job on offense is to score when you get the ball and get in position to do so. Provide a reliable target and don't turn the ball over when they pass it to you Then finish.


But these things hurt his value as a player...

Which player is better?

A) Someone who can efficiently create his own shot at high volume
B) Someone who can efficiently score only when playing with an elite point guard

Like I get that Bryant's role is limited to what he's capable of doing, and he benefited from playing with Beal. That's also why he's only making 3 / $25m and Brook Lopez is making 4 / $50m.
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Re: Seismic Shift in the East: Thomas Bryant a Wizard 

Post#292 » by DCZards » Fri Jul 26, 2019 3:05 pm

gtn130 wrote:
doclinkin wrote:But that's his role though. Difficulty and quality of shot mean nothing if you have a good point guard to eliminate that part of the equation for you. As a pass dependent player like a traditional Big, your job on offense is to score when you get the ball and get in position to do so. Provide a reliable target and don't turn the ball over when they pass it to you Then finish.


But these things hurt his value as a player...

Which player is better?

A) Someone who can efficiently create his own shot at high volume
B) Someone who can efficiently score only when playing with an elite point guard

Like I get that Bryant's role is limited to what he's capable of doing, and he benefited from playing with Beal. That's also why he's only making 3 / $25m and Brook Lopez is making 4 / $50m.


This is the part of your argument that I don't get. Since when does a player's salary determine how good they are or how they'll perform in the upcoming season? We all know that they are players who are overpaid and many who are underpaid. So comparing salaries is the weakest of arguments.

Bryant is 21 years old and going into his third season and Lopez is 31 years and going into his 11th season. Which player do you believe has more upside? Which one would you prefer to have on this year's Zards team? Which player is the best bargain salary-wise?

I'd say the answer to all three of those questions is Thomas Bryant.
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Re: Seismic Shift in the East: Thomas Bryant a Wizard 

Post#293 » by Ruzious » Fri Jul 26, 2019 3:16 pm

gtn130 wrote:
doclinkin wrote:But that's his role though. Difficulty and quality of shot mean nothing if you have a good point guard to eliminate that part of the equation for you. As a pass dependent player like a traditional Big, your job on offense is to score when you get the ball and get in position to do so. Provide a reliable target and don't turn the ball over when they pass it to you Then finish.


But these things hurt his value as a player...

Which player is better?

A) Someone who can efficiently create his own shot at high volume
B) Someone who can efficiently score only when playing with an elite point guard

Like I get that Bryant's role is limited to what he's capable of doing, and he benefited from playing with Beal. That's also why he's only making 3 / $25m and Brook Lopez is making 4 / $50m.

Except that Bryant has never played with anything close to an elite point guard. Satoransky was his primary PG, and Sato's below average for a PG at creating.
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Re: Seismic Shift in the East: Thomas Bryant a Wizard 

Post#294 » by gtn130 » Fri Jul 26, 2019 3:19 pm

DCZards wrote:
gtn130 wrote:
doclinkin wrote:But that's his role though. Difficulty and quality of shot mean nothing if you have a good point guard to eliminate that part of the equation for you. As a pass dependent player like a traditional Big, your job on offense is to score when you get the ball and get in position to do so. Provide a reliable target and don't turn the ball over when they pass it to you Then finish.


But these things hurt his value as a player...

Which player is better?

A) Someone who can efficiently create his own shot at high volume
B) Someone who can efficiently score only when playing with an elite point guard

Like I get that Bryant's role is limited to what he's capable of doing, and he benefited from playing with Beal. That's also why he's only making 3 / $25m and Brook Lopez is making 4 / $50m.


This is the part of your argument that I don't get. Since when does a player's salary determine how good they are or how they'll perform in the upcoming season? We all know that they are players who are overpaid and many who are underpaid. So comparing salaries is the weakest of arguments.

Bryant is 21 years old and going into his third season and Lopez is 31 years and going into his 11th season. Which player do you believe has more upside? Which one would you prefer to have on this year's Zards team?


Salary is imperfect but it's a decent proxy for how players are valued across the leagues, and both TB and Lopez were free agents this past summer with Lopez being ten years older and likely entering the twilight of his career.

More importantly, if we look at player salaries (via free agency) as a rough proxy for how they're valued by GMs, then everyone arguing TB > Lopez is making a fundamentally contrarian argument that cuts against conventional wisdom. My position is unquestionably in line with conventional wisdom, and Wizards fans on this board are the ones firing off hot takes.
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Re: Seismic Shift in the East: Thomas Bryant a Wizard 

Post#295 » by DCZards » Fri Jul 26, 2019 3:21 pm

gtn130 wrote:
Which player is better?

A) Someone who can efficiently create his own shot at high volume
B) Someone who can efficiently score only when playing with an elite point guard


TB scored efficiently last season...and I don't recall him playing with an "elite point guard." So he obviously can score efficiently without being on the court with an elite PG.

EDIT TO ADD: Just noticed that Ruz already beat me to this point. :)
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Re: Seismic Shift in the East: Thomas Bryant a Wizard 

Post#296 » by doclinkin » Fri Jul 26, 2019 3:22 pm

gtn130 wrote:
doclinkin wrote:But that's his role though. Difficulty and quality of shot mean nothing if you have a good point guard to eliminate that part of the equation for you. As a pass dependent player like a traditional Big, your job on offense is to score when you get the ball and get in position to do so. Provide a reliable target and don't turn the ball over when they pass it to you Then finish.


But these things hurt his value as a player...

Which player is better?

A) Someone who can efficiently create his own shot at high volume
B) Someone who can efficiently score only when playing with an elite point guard

Like I get that Bryant's role is limited to what he's capable of doing, and he benefited from playing with Beal. That's also why he's only making 3 / $25m and Brook Lopez is making 4 / $50m.


Then Brook is not a good example for you since 65% of his shots were 3 pt attempts last year and 95% of those were off assists. And of that 35% of 2pt field goals, 65% came from assists.

https://www.basketball-reference.com/players/l/lopezbr01.html

Is your argument that point guards are, or ought to be, irrelevant in the pace and space era? I mean you could make that argument, it'd be interesting to read, I can see some points. But in the mean time teams keep paying ballhandlers to take care of that part, and asking Bigs to do what Bigs do. They are just also asking those Bigs to shoot from outside nowadays. Bryant does. And will probably get better at it with more reps and ideally better PG play. If he doesn't then I'm blaming the loss of Satoransky, not that he ought to learn a dribble pull-up that almost no Big has in their game.
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Re: Seismic Shift in the East: Thomas Bryant a Wizard 

Post#297 » by doclinkin » Fri Jul 26, 2019 3:23 pm

DCZards wrote:
gtn130 wrote:
Which player is better?

A) Someone who can efficiently create his own shot at high volume
B) Someone who can efficiently score only when playing with an elite point guard


TB scored efficiently last season...and I don't recall him playing with an "elite point guard." So he obviously can score efficiently without being on the court with an elite PG.

EDIT TO ADD: Just noticed that Ruz already beat me to this point. :)



ditto
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Re: Seismic Shift in the East: Thomas Bryant a Wizard 

Post#298 » by gtn130 » Fri Jul 26, 2019 3:26 pm

DCZards wrote:
gtn130 wrote:
Which player is better?

A) Someone who can efficiently create his own shot at high volume
B) Someone who can efficiently score only when playing with an elite point guard


TB scored efficiently last season...and I don't recall him playing with an "elite point guard." So he obviously can score efficiently without being on the court with an elite PG.

EDIT TO ADD: Just noticed that Ruz already beat me to this point. :)


Quoted is a hypothetical
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Re: Seismic Shift in the East: Thomas Bryant a Wizard 

Post#299 » by gtn130 » Fri Jul 26, 2019 3:29 pm

How on earth would I ever think Satoransky is an elite point guard? That doesn't follow at all. I was responding to doclinkin saying "Difficulty and quality of shot mean nothing if you have a good point guard to eliminate that part of the equation for you."
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Re: Seismic Shift in the East: Thomas Bryant a Wizard 

Post#300 » by gtn130 » Fri Jul 26, 2019 3:31 pm

me: Thomas Bryant isn't that good and is paid relative to his skill level. He just entered free agency and the market has spoken.

Wizards fans on RealGM: Thomas Bryant is actually better than Brook Lopez has ever been in his career.

Ok guys lol

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