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Predicting 2010: Thaddeus Young

Hi Brian,

I think Thad could average a bit more points but I'm wondering how the shots will be allocated in Eddie Jordan's system. There are a bunch of good scorers on the team and I'm not sure who is going to take precedence (i.e. - the primary, secondary and tertiary scorers). I think Thad is the most gifted all-around scorer on the team but Brand has the biggest name cache, Iggy is the most important player and Lou Will plays (tries to) a lot like the original AI.

Another few things I think Thad needs to work on is getting to the free throw line at a rate commensurate with his athleticism, his defense (mostly good to very good but he has the potential to be better than that plus more consistency) and his passing. He is no Iggy as far as passing goes but I do think he's capable of say 3-3.5 dimes a game. I put free throws first as I think it is what could make him really unstoppable. He avoids contact. If he could get to the line somewhat like Iggy it'd open up his outside shot which, as you've noted, has been improving.

What is your best guess of who the top 3 primary scorers on the team will be (in order)? I'm going to say it'd be Thad, Iggy and Brand. Both were starting to defer towards the end when Thad got hot. Iggy is going to be the real facilitator on the team and play like a better Paul Pressey.

I'm hoping Jrue really shows something and earns a good share of PG minutes based on his defense and unselfishness. I think Lou is what he is (a scorer) and he won't improve that much as a facilitator.

Mike reply to Chris on Sep 18 at 13:48

i agree that's who the top 3 scorers should be, but i think in reality it will look more like iggy, brand, thad. too many times last season thad would get hot in the 1st half, and then they would completely stop going to him. i hope that will change this season. he is without question the most talented scorer on the roster and should be putting up 20+/gm.

Someone brought this up the other day in the comments: How much of Thad being frozen out do you think was Andre Miller's fault?

Mike reply to Brian on Sep 18 at 15:02

if it's true that miller consciously was freezing out guys like dalembert, green, & evans, it was for good reason. those guys really don't need to touch the basketball during an offensive possession. i don't see why he would have done the same to thad, who was probably their most explosive scorer at times last season. and he was efficient too, so it's not like he was getting his points by taking bad shots ala lou.

i think it was just something that happened in the rhythm of the offense that should have been addressed by dileo, but wasn't.

DeanH reply to Brian on Sep 18 at 19:54

There were numerous times last year that Thad was hot and just did not get the ball. Do not know if it was Miller's fault or Green, but it was consistent through the year.

Actually, I think this is one of the reasons they lost SEVERAL GAMES last year. That should not happen w/ the PO offense!

Thad attempted more than 4 free throws in only 9 of 75 games last season, the team was 6-3 in those games. Most of them were against really bad teams.

For me, Thad's moves around the hoop are designed to make the shot first, avoid contact second. That's not horrible, some guys shy away from contact at all costs and don't really care about making the shot. For my money, he'll really ascend when he goes in there looking to draw the contact and score. May come with experience and/or strength.

on a completely unrelated note, did you guys hear about the impending referee lockout? i don't think it will affect anything too greatly, but it's still kind of interesting.

I'm kind of hoping this shakes out like the MLB umpires strike did. MLB wound up getting rid of the worst umps when they finally came back and replacing them. (Looking at you Violet).

Mike reply to Brian on Sep 18 at 15:04

that would certainly be ideal.

unfortunately this referee lockout foreshadows the players lockout that appears more & more likely to happen in 2011...

DeanH reply to Mike on Sep 18 at 19:57

I disagree about the player lockout. No sport can afford a lockout these days.

RagedCage reply to DeanH on Sep 19 at 23:56

They sure as hell can. The league, the players, and everyone knows what they can afford or else they wouldn't be risking it. Plus they can just buy something to distract them with a bigger issue or area of intrest (like lebrons contract). I wasn't alive in the '94 MLB lockout but from what I know I hope that this is nothing like it and it won't affect the season.

I'm fairly certain the NBA in general, and NBA players today, are in much worse shape financially than the MLB and MLB players were in 1994.

Now, the owners on the other hand, some of them I'm sure would welcome a lockout and perhaps a completely lost season. I think the odds are pretty good that we're going to see a strike, and honestly, I think the players' association is going to have to bend over to either avoid or end it.

DeanH reply to Brian on Sep 20 at 14:01

Good point about owners not minding skipping a season. Was not thinking that they would be better off skipping a year! But, I do think you are right as to the players not wanting to miss a year. Anyway, maybe my point would be wrong.

Posted something similar at realgm... Within 2 years I'm hoping Thad becomes a 20pt/48% shooter. Wing players who are effecient high scorers are rare. How rare?

Here is a list of all non PF players 6'5-6'8 in the last 40 years who averaged 20pt/48% during that span:

Dr. J
David Thompson
Bernard King
Elgin Baylor
Lou Hudson
Chet Walker
Walt Frazier
Marques Johnson

Note only 1 active player, and lots of players who Thad should emulate. I do not expect Thad to end up at that kind of sure fire HOF level, but that is the type of player I expect Thad to evolve into, becoming the 15th name on this list.

Do you think Thad can be a career 20pt/48% player, and would that equate to the HOF? (I think all 14 names on that list are HOF players.)

Tray reply to tk76 on Sep 20 at 22:07

Didn't those guys mostly average a lot more than 20 ppg? I would be very surprised if Thad gets good enough to make the Hall of Fame. Last year was pretty disappointing, honestly. He went from budding Pippen to budding Rudy Gay.

here is the link (remove the space after the www)
www .basketball-reference.com/fc/tiny.cgi?id=h0oOy

4 averaged 20-20.1
7 averaged 20.6-22.1
4 averaged 22.5 to 26.2
MJ averaged 30.1

BTW, most of the bottom 1/2 of these guys did not start averaging 20 ppg until age 25 or later. It really hard to know where Young's ceiling is. I just know he is an efficient scorer who can get to the basket without even having a polished handle (yet) and scores efficiently even though he is still just developing his jumper.

In fact if he really develops a reliable 3pt stroke it will probably lower his overall FG % out of this discussion. This is probably why so few active wing players shoot a high FG%. Only guys like Wade, who rarely settles for 3's. Look at Andre Miller, who rarely shot 3's and ended up shooting 48%+ the last few years.

Also, looking at eFG% (to reward guys who hit 3's) here is the very short list of 20ppg/eFG% 51+ for wing players 6'4-6'8:

Marquis Johnson
Ray Allen


Thad's career eFG is .531, which would be #2 on that list (behind only Dantley.)

Again, Thad has to get to 20ppg status and keep his good percentages to join this rare company. I think he can (or come close), but regardless the main point is how rare and valuable having an EFFICIENT wing scorer is.

BTW, Charles Barkley is near or at the top of these lists, but I excluded him as a non-wing player.

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