Chad Ford has released his initial look at the 2011 free agent class over at ESPN. My first reaction was that Ford really knows nothing about the Sixers, hasn't watched a game of theirs in years. My second reaction was if Ed Stefanski sees this he's probably going to break out the check book and sign a couple of guys to foolish extensions.
Here's what Ford had to say about Thad:
5. (among restricted free agents) Thaddeus Young, Sixers
Young continues to tantalize with his combination of versatility and athleticism. He can play both the 3 and the 4 and continues to improve his perimeter game. While it's tough to gauge whether he's a star given his limited role with the team, he'll get a big offer from someone if the Sixers don't lock him up.
First of all, Thad hasn't had a limited role with the team. He's played 6,276 minutes in his first three seasons, which is 7th among players drafted in that class. Second, to say he "can" play both the 3 and 4 is technically accurate, unfortunately, there's no indication that he can player either position particularly well. It may be just as accurate to say he "can't" play the 3 or the 4. I'm also not a big fan of the threat at the end here, but whatever.
Ford goes on to list Spencer Hawes among other notable restricted free agents, which I find laughable at this point.
Now obviously I don't think our GM would read something like this and suddenly think he has to get Thad's John Hancock on an extension ASAP. And I'm not even saying signing Thad after this season is necessarily a bad idea. The key is that right now, up to this point, nothing about Thad warrants a big offer from the Sixers or any other team. In fact, if he doesn't make significant strides this season, there's no way I'd match an offer sheet.You could even make the argument that you shouldn't sign him for his qualifying offer (though that's a tougher sell, and you'd probably need to see a regression to just give up on him). Still, why take the risk? If happen to bump into Stefanski at Chili's, make sure he isn't sitting in view of a TV, just in case Ford is on SportsCenter spouting off this nonsense.