For the second time in as many weeks, the Sixers organization set up a conference call for a group of bloggers. This time, Rod Thorn was on the line and answered a bunch of our questions. Check after the jump for my notes.
Bloggers on the call: Derek from Liberty Ballers
, Tom from Philadunkia
, Dannie from ReclinerGM
, Ricky from Sixers 4 Guidos
and Andrew from The 700 Level
Thorn was on the line for about 25 minutes, I'll try to hit the highlights below:
My question: "Are there any plans to offer extensions to Thad Young, Spencer Hawes or Jason Smith prior to the Nov. 1st deadline?"
Thorn: "We've had preliminary discussions with some of them...The CBA runs out after this season, so I think you aren't going to see many extensions handed out. You've got guys like Durant who are already considered great, but outside of maybe 3 or 4 guys, I don't think there will be as many extensions as usual."
Derek followed up asking what he was looking for from Hawes and Thad this season to see if they deserved extensions, but the question was kind of dodged with some talk about what each guy's strengths/weaknesses are. He did compare Hawes and Dalembert, talking about Hawes' passing ability and (fictional) outside-shooting prowess.
Tom from Philadunkia asked about statistical analysis, Thorn said virtually all teams use advanced stats to some degree, they are using them in Philly and they actually use different numbers in Philly than they used in New Jersey.
Thorn said he came to Philly because he liked the personnel and he saw a good chance for improvement in response to a question from Dannie (ReclinerGM).
He dodged a question from Ricky about the financial situation, and the financial result of the Dalembert trade.
At some point, someone put their phone on hold and we were stuck listening to YSP on the line. Thanks, whoever that was.
Tom asked whether Thorn would look to trade now or look to build from the ground up. Thorn replied that you never know when a trade is going to happen, but the team is not going to blow it all up and start from scratch.
My question: "What's a better value, Andre Iguodala for $56M over the next four seasons, or Carmelo Anthony for $82M over the next four years?"
Thorn's response was that Melo is one of the best scorers in the league, a decorated veteran, gold medalist, all star, etc. Iguodala is a great all around player, but not the offensive player Melo is. Toward the end of his response, I think I heard this quote: "Carmelo is a great player, Iguodala showed with Team USA this summer that he can play with great players." (emphasis mine). He didn't directly answer the question, saying it's comparing apples and oranges, but that quote stuck with me.
Later, I asked Thorn who's decision it was to draft Favors in NJ. He said he always had the final say, went on to say that Favors, Cousins and Wes Johnson were all in the discussion. Cousins was off the table because Brook Lopez was their center. They went with Favors because he, "has the a chance to be the prototypical power forward in the league from a rebounding and defensive perspective." He also said if Favors reaches his potential, he and Lopez could make one of the best PF/C combos in the league. I agree.
Thorn also said, "Miami is the best team in the East. They have 2 of the 3 best players in the league, in my opinion." I don't think he was talking about Chalmers, though.
When asked what measurement was the most important when evaluating players, Thorn talked about length and body type, but ultimately said he just looks at talent.
Thorn has had decades of practice in the skill of evading questions, and he did a fair amount of dancing around them during the call, but there were definitely a few telling things to come out of the interview.
As always, my thanks to Michael Preston, Rod Thorn and the Sixers organization for setting this up.