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Reviewing JTI

If/When the season starts, we should give the J/T/I/Y/B starting lineup a shot. Might as well take some chances next season and see how it works out.

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eddies' heady's on Jul 14 at 8:53
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But the question is how are you defining successful? Even if they do become 'a bit above average', what exactly is that doing for you as a team and where does it take you as a team?

My guess to these questions would be you're still just playoff fodder for the contending teams. I often think about other players in the league that are significantly better than our players yet play the same positions. And think about how they can't even achieve ultimate success with some of them having better supporting casts on their teams. A few examples would be, say, Joe Johnson or Chris Paul.

I've seen some posters here say that if we let Jrue / Turner develop then could that put us over the top (think Suede proposed this). I vehemently say no, because if you look at Joe Johnson and his shooting ability and isolation ability, Turner's nowhere close to that and likely won't even come close to reaching it, particularly his shooting ability. Same with Jrue. He's not close to Chris Paul and his ability to control a team and, more important, a game. And he probably won't come close to reaching Paul's uncanny ability.

With that said, neither Paul nor Joe Johnson has come close to being considered a contender with their current and past teams who arguably have / had better overall talent and better teams than the Sixers currently have.

All this is to say that it's fun to be excited when thinking about or talking about what players on your favorite team may become, or how they may constitute the popular word "core", or their potential to develop, but realistically, depending on players of this ilk or caliber really gets or carries you nowhere - if as a fan your ultimate destination is the pinnacle.

They're not stars and no amount of development will make them one. Sure, they'll potentially be really good players, but the league is littered with those types; all of whom haven't won anything of note while being on better constructed and more talented teams than we currently have.

The better the team performs, the more value the above mentioned players will have in potentional trades. I don't see any point in forcing themselves into a typical 5 man lineup when we are so weak at the 5. If/When we get a center good enough to earn the starting spot, then we can worry about that.

I'm not sure how you can say Chris Paul has ever had a good team around him. He's carried a bunch of stiffs pretty much his entire career. Basically all he's ever had is a PF who loves to shoot long twos.

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eddies' heady's reply to Brian on Jul 14 at 11:48
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Notice I said "arguably". Some of those teams he had were better than what the Sixers currently have as stated though.

Besides, the comment was saying something else altogether.

Using "arguably" and saying something false doesn't suddenly mean it isn't false. And your point was those guys have played with good teams and haven't won anything, so even if Turner and/or Jrue reach their full potential, they'll never amount to anything.

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eddies' heady's reply to Brian on Jul 14 at 12:28
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Not sure how "false" enters into the fray when it's nothing but your and my opinion of how "good" those NOH teams were. When Paul had Peja, David West and Tyson Chandler, and Mo Peterson with him they were pretty formidable in that stacked conference - something the Sixers haven't recently been, or are now.

And yeah, if Jrue and Turner both reasonably cap out, you're not winning anything with those two starting for you. At least, not in this league, even with a good center.

Take away Paul from that roster and there's nothing really intimidating about them. So yeah, it is false. You can always claim that it's just your opinion that they're good, but that doesn't make it a strong opinion.

if Jrue and Turner both reasonably cap out, you're not winning anything with those two starting for you.

If only we had the guys you wanted with those picks, Wayne Ellington and Wesley Johnson, we'd be all set.

How do you know what Jrue or Turners ceilings are? Holiday was one of the best players in the country and shows huge improvement from year one to year two. Turner is a bit more of a question mark but he still has a lot of potential and his willingness to remake his shot shows the dedication and humbleness needed to develop into a star caliber player. I don't see how you could write him off after one season.

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Charlie H reply to Brian on Jul 18 at 14:15
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This word needs to be retired for a while. Everything involving opinions is arguable - what does it mean?

NO was the hot team in the West at the end of the '09 season. And to say Atlanta hasn't come close to contending is a stretch. They came close this year.

I don't even know how to respond to this insane point about Joe Johnson because there are so many illogical things about it. What are you saying, that a team with Turner as its first option cannot succeed because a team with Johnson as its first option does not succeed? Who ever said we were making Turner our first option? Johnson would make a pretty solid second or third option and has in the past in Phoenix, and that's the role Turner's supposed to play here one day. Then you say Chris Paul hasn't won anything - well of course not, the guy hasn't had much help! He's had David West and nothing. This last playoff run he didn't even have David West. All this JTI talk is predicated on our getting a really good big man, the sort of big man that would make contenders out of the Hornets or Hawks (though arguably the Hawks have such a big man and just fail to use him).

Not sure I see your point.

Only 3-5 players in the league are good enough to be the lead man on a champion in any given season. A very small number of stars have accounted for 95% of the titles in the last 30 year.

No one is suggesting that the Sixers have that caliber player. But you need to have 5 starters, and it helps if as many of them can be good as possible. So unless you think the Sixers can somehow flip J/T/I for Lebron (0 titles:) or someone like Duncan in his prime, then you might as well have the best young, affordable players on your roster as you can. And IMO Jrue and Turner qualify.

What is your alternative, have worse players? Because no top 5 NBA players are available right now. Nor can you trade J/T/I to get one.

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Tray reply to tk76 on Jul 14 at 17:51
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Well, if someone were willing to swap us a good young big man for Turner, I'd do that. Of course, no one is, but saying that he qualifies as one of the "best young affordable players you can" have on your roster is a stretch. I guess he is in the sense that no one's about to give him better young affordable players for him, but only in that sense.

Sure, I'd swap him for a decent young big, and maybe a move like that will be an option at some point if his play makes a big jump this year. But that player won't "win you a championship" either.

IMO, it is always great to have good players on their rookie deals. They have value and help your team. They also are entertaining and give you reason for hope. They may not be a recipe for being a contender- since most contenders are vet heavy... but being a contender is not an option for the Sixers.

I worry about the team making major long term commitments to vets- like when the committed 5 years and 160M to Brand and Iguodala. Those moves are risky, since it locks the franchise in to certain players. But in terms of guys on their rookie deals who can contribute- the more the better at this stage. Those types of players have good net value, and can be hopefully be used to acquire or compliment a first line star if one ever becomes available.

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mchezo reply to tk76 on Jul 15 at 16:41
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Last year who were those three to five guys? Dirk has to be one. What about Kobe, Dwade, Lebron, Durant, Rose, Howard, Garnett/Pierce, CP3, Deron. I think that may have true in the past but is it really true today?

I hope not because Miami will have two of those players for the next 5 or six years and OKC will have the other two. Hopefully the detroit model will become more of the norm.

I have no idea what point you are making here. We should probably just let both of them go, right?

Just for reference, Joe Johnson's isolation ability is not good. There's no reason to be talking about it as if it were good. It's a main criticism of the Hawks offense is that they are WAY too reliant on terrible isolations from Johnson.

Turner, who is "nowhere close to Joe Johnson's isolation ability" scored .91 points per iso trip. The high and mighty Joe Johnson scored .81 points per iso. Of course Johnson had way more attempts, but those numbers show that there is no reason to place him on such a high pedestal over Turner. Please don't give the "blind squirrel finds a nut" defense either.

Joe Johnson is also on a deal that averages over 20M per year. Joe Johnson is definitely good enough to be part of a champion. It his his contract that is the impediment, not his game.

Jrue and Turner will combine to make 6.5M next year. The entire J/T/I back-court will make less than 20M, while JJ/Hinrich/Marvin will make 35M without being better on the floor.

Column: Lockout could erase entire NBA season:

http://ow.ly/5Es3Z

Was just in this Hoop Speak Live chat with a couple of ESPN NBA bloggers and this Warriors blogger who I've responded a couple of times on Twitter. He comes out on Twitter and writes "Come in to the chat and watch me take Philly fans to task."

He basically just said it's an average fan base. I was like, "Yeah you are right. It's a college hoops town." He got flustered as if he was expecting some vitriolic rant and wondered why I was being so "nice" when I prefer a word like logical. It's a point that has been made before, but I guess he was expecting some tirade about how he sucks. It was actually pretty funny. He called me an Iguodala lover too. Not the first time!

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jkay reply to Rich on Jul 14 at 21:40
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hehe. I think the Philly fanbase reputation is more stereotype than fact. But I will argue that it is definitely football heavy though.

Also to give credit where credit is due, I though Fagan did an excellent job on her last blog post getting into the specifics of the work Magee and Turner are doing. It had some really technical stuff, but she really broke down what they are doing in detail.

Yeah, I put a link in the reading list earlier. Good stuff.

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Rich reply to Brian on Jul 14 at 22:05
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Magee always said something at camps that stuck with me when I played: "Shoot through the guide hand." The picture in the article in perfect in showing what Turner is doing wrong. His hand should be more on the side of the ball instead of behind it.

The shooting hand form is very good from Turner: His elbow is under the ball nicely and he shoots it off the two fingers you want to last touch the ball (middle and index).

The guide hand is what's wrong. He puts it kind of on top when it really should only be guiding the basketball, not doing any of the shooting. If you can picture it yourself, it should be on the side of the ball and end up there, almost looking like you are doing the tomahawk chop with that hand. Here's a good example:

http://bcnbatalk.files.wordpress.com/2010/05/kobe-allen.jpg

Now here's Turner from OSU:
http://www.annarbor.com/assets_c/2010/03/EVAN-TURNER-SHOT-thumb-425x588-31868.jpg

I can picture that ball rolling off his thumb, providing another variable in his shot, which is not good. It's hard to be consistent doing that.

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Rich reply to Rich on Jul 14 at 22:45
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Come to think of it, this is probably the best example:

http://butthegameison.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/Stephen-Curry.jpg

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jkay reply to Rich on Jul 15 at 0:10
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in other words; maintain balance.

I wonder if it is easier to fix a person's shot if their shooting hand is already correct (pretty much) but the guide hand is the problem, as opposed to the contrary. I feel that it would be easier to fix the guide hand but I never taught shooting. Anyone know?

I'm afraid there's going to be a sharp learning curve here. The first problem is the placement of the guide hand, but you also have to take into account that he's been using the guide hand as part of his shot for so many years. That left thumb has been involved in not only the guiding of the shot, but the propulsion as well. He has a ton of work to do to get the feel of basically shooting with one hand. Good/bad news, if he sticks with it, he'll have plenty of time to get reps in during the lockout.

I don't like the form on Turner's shooting hand that much either. Notice all space between the ball and the palm of Curry's shooting hand in the photo Rich posted? That's the form Magee teaches -- or at least that's what he taught 40 years ago. Meanwhile with Turner the ball is always flush with the palm of his shooting hand and his wrist is cocked way back. This is awkward. The elbow of his shooting hand and his release point, however, look great.

the reason why I had so much hope for the JTI trio was not because it was supposed to be some sort of offensive juggernaut that would give nightmares to the opposition's coach. it was predicated on the notion that if they were became decent offensively, enough to score against the half court defense with some efficiency, we would have a trio that could not only attack their man on offense but guard multiple positions very well. There would be no team we would worry about a mismatch with, outside of the bigs. That and the ability to seal the perimeter play of almost any NBA team with great size, defense and versatility.
Initially before Iguodala got signed to his huge contract, we envisioned getting more players like him. Essentially we wanted a team with 5 players just as good an overall player as he was. No black holes in their game, but not exactly superstars either. It's the ceiling of what you would project JTI to be. That's the reason I think we all wanted that. It's being missed right now.


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