While We’re Waiting… More Building a Winner, Signing Big Names and Being Twitter Responsible


While We’re Waiting serves as the early morning gathering of WFNY-esque information for your viewing pleasure. Have something you think we should see? Send it to our tips email at tips@waitingfornextyear.com.

Part 3 of ‘Building a Winner’- “The historical evidence continues to pile up that there’s no reason to think that drafting in the high lottery is vital to future success. The list of recent teams taking a quick, few year dip into the lottery and emerging as contenders is…the present day Thunder. Overwhelmingly, the elite franchises are built through smart trades, value free agency pursuits, and mid-to-low draft picks. As several commenter’s have noted; continuity, good scouting & player development, and incorporating the right players into a system (thanks for further defining my giant umbrella of “good management”) are how team’s punch their tickets to Titletown. The lottery is a gamble; you either hit it big, or miss & go back next year. That’s totally fine, if the Cavs hit on a really high pick again this year and score another young star – that is OUTSTANDING. If they score a top 5 pick and draft an average player, well that’s a squandered opportunity. If they pick 11th…they can make that work too. The Cavs hit the lottery once and scored a franchise changer; now it’s time to make the most of wherever their draft picks are, along with their trade assets and cap space.” [Hetrick/Cavs the Blog]

A popular subject this week, take a look at #1 overall picks and their championships won. “Consider this. Since 1990, there have been exactly two players that were drafted #1 overall and won an NBA championship: Shaquille O’Neal (drafted in 1992, titles in 2000, ’01, ’02, and ’06) and Tim Duncan (drafted in 1997, titles in 1999, ’03, ’05, and ‘07). Considering that Shaq won titles with the Lakers and Heat, not the Magic who drafted him, this makes Tim Duncan the only #1 pick since 1990 to win a title with the team that drafted him.

Think it’s limited to just the NBA? Think again. The list of NFL #1 overall picks since 1990 to win a Super Bowl is as follows: Russell Maryland, Drew Bledsoe, Keyshawn Johnson, Orlando Pace, Peyton Manning, David Carr, and Eli Manning. Of that list, Bledsoe and Carr were on the bench in their Super Bowls, and Johnson won his ring with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, not the Jets who drafted him. This makes Maryland, Pace, and the Manning brothers the only #1 picks since 1990 to win titles with the teams that drafted them. And if you want to nitpick, Eli was technically drafted by the San Diego Chargers and immediately traded to the Giants so you could argue for only three players that fit in the previous sentence.” [Maroun/Hardwood Paroxysm]

So, I think this is saying signing big name free agents isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. I may not be smart enough to read it right though. “The $/rWAR* for all 196 multi-year deals that ended in between 2007 to 2011: Re-signed players: $4.9 million/WAR Players who switched teams: $6.8 million/WAR Difference: 39%.

Looking only at deals between two and four years long, I found the following differences: Re-signed players who signed before the end of the season: $4.6 million/rWAR* Re-signed players who signed after the end of the season: $6.6 million/rWAR* Players who switched teams after the season ended: $8.9 million/rWAR*

*Note that rWAR is different (and usually lower — than WAR used at FanGraphs. There’s a clear bias if we look only at the contracts for players who reached free agency; these players are more likely to be overpaid, which also throws more measurement error into the data.” [Swartz/Fangraphs] (Hat tip @WFNYJon)

“The point is that athletes must learn, sooner or later, that Tweeting something in the year 2012 is no different than saying something into a microphone held by Clark Kellogg. It’s all for public consumption. I hear your thoughts when you say them live on CBS. I read your thoughts when you Tweet them to your followers — if only because your followers RT them and those thoughts find me somehow, in this case via an email from our Ohio State Rapid Reporter.

Bottom line, don’t be stupid.” [Parrish/CBS Sports]

  • mgbode

    I like the idea they have with that ‘building a winner’ series, but reading through it there are so many flaws.   Like not mentioning that Kobe/Adidas forced his way to the Lakers in that draft.   Or somehow discounting past lottery picks that eventually got flipped into players, etc.

    there are many ways to build a contender and the OKC thing has been beaten into the ground when it’s nearly impossible to replicate.   here’s the thing.  of all the teams he mentions, they all have an alltime great player or one playing like an alltime great for several seasons.   so, we need one if we want to be a consistent contender (exception the Pistons, sort of.  Rasheed certainly played a bit like one when he first got there).

    so, is Irving our Duncan, Nowitzki, Nash, Kobe/Shaq?   hopefully.  but, I would sure feel better about things if we found someone to pair with him to fully take advantage of his skills even if he is.