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Thread: Prospect development - what is considered a success?

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    Raptors Republic All-Star Uncle_Si's Avatar
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    Default Prospect development - what is considered a success?

    We have 5 prospects that have been acquired by Masai:

    Bruno
    Bebe
    D.Wright
    D.Daniels
    N.Powell

    How many of these guys have to become contributing rotation players for Masai's drafting to be considered a success?

    How do your expectations change depending on where the player is drafted?

    For example, given the massive gamble taken by Masai at drafting Bruno 20th, does that mean he would have to be a better player than say D.Wright who was drafted where he should have been?

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    Raptors Republic Superstar MixxAOR's Avatar
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    Unfortunately they will be compared to guys who were drafted after them (except for Bebe because we got him for Salmons) and Raptors fans never let go of that shit.
    #MyOpinionIsAlwaysRight

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    Raptors Republic All-Star Uncle_Si's Avatar
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    That might be true for the casual fan, but for us lunatics flooding the forums in early July I think there is more of a conversation to be had.

    There's some sharp minds on here, I'd be interested to see what they come up with.

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    Raptors Republic All-Star JawsGT's Avatar
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    Great question. I'll ignore Bebe cause he was traded for. But honestly, all late picks so my expectations are low for each of them. Any of them becomes a starter and I'll consider that a success. Even if a few of them become regular rotation players I'll think that will be decent drafting by MU. But again, some of these guys are pretty raw, so if they do succeed or exceed anyone's expectations, how much credit will MU really deserve? I'm just thinking that there are so many factors that will determine how successful they are (i.e. work ethic, quality of coaching staff, playing time, practice facilities, even personal relationships and support from family and friends) that I wonder how much credit MU should receive for picking them? I guess MU probably "sees" something in them, but ultimately it may be up to them to put the work in and make the right decisions in order to reach their potential. And of course, one also needs to consider what MU is doing to "help" them along the way, like getting a D-league team, hiring the right coaches, upgrading practice facilities etc. Very interesting question!

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    Raptors Republic Superstar Miekenstien's Avatar
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    basically any of these players being useful rotation players that were drafted and groomed in our system would scream success to me.

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    Raptors Republic All-Star Jclaw's Avatar
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    Not to use recency bias but I think Cory Joseph sets a certain bar. Late first round draft pick. Not expected to save the franchise. Slowly brought along and now is seen as a solid contributor to an NBA team. Not necessarily a starter but a contributor. I mentioned this elsewhere but our history of trying to reward bad seasons with good draft picks has lead us to look to a pick as an immediate help to the team. Look at all the people clamouring about the fact that we didn't draft Bobby Portis. It's as if they would have expected him to be our starting 4 this year. By the time Portis could start, Masai will have probably (hopefully) filled that spot appropriately. I think the exception may be Bruno because he was a home run pick. He can save the franchise

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    Raptors Republic All-Star S.R.'s Avatar
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    Yup if a late first rounder grows into a starter, that's a huge success. If he grows into a useful role player, that's still quite good. If he disappears after the first couple of years, that's just a pretty common outcome.

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    Raptors Republic All-Star Scraptor's Avatar
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    How many of these guys have to become contributing rotation players for Masai's drafting to be considered a success?
    To me it's not really a question of what % of picks end up hitting. It's more an overall examination of how we develop youth.

    I think expectations are set by draft position and ceiling; where the player ends up relative to those two factors determines the success of our prospect development.

    None of the five guys has high expectations set by draft position. Outside the lottery I can't really ding a GM if a player doesn't set the league on fire.

    My cautious expectations based on ceilings for these guys are:
    Bruno - starter on a decent team (like Batum when he was playing well)
    Bebe - rotational big/role player (Brandan Wright in Dallas - though I love that DX had his floor as Hassan Whiteside)
    D. Wright - backup point guard
    D. Daniels - no expectations
    N. Powell - no expectations

    What I'd like to see is systematic progress. What are we giving these guys to focus on? How is that translating into what they are doing on the floor?

    My favorite article about development recently was this one about Brett Brown and Nerlens Noel:
    http://bleacherreport.com/articles/2...lost-to-injury

    Brown showed him game tape of proven NBA leaders—including Tim Duncan, whom Brown worked with for six years—and also clips of players talking to the media, for him to understand that side of the business. He even sent Noel the highlights of Kevin Durant's MVP acceptance speech, stressing the right way to carry yourself as an NBA professional. "I feel tremendous responsibility to Nerlens," Brown said.

    During games, Brown would challenge Noel with coaching lessons.

    "I'd say, 'Nerlens, tell me what you see, offense, defense, whatever," he said. "'Nerlens, what do you like about Joakim Noah? Tell me about Tyson Chandler. Who do you think you're going to go grow to? Why do you like them? Nerlens, what do you think about the way that we're guarding the pick-and-roll? You think we're going to make adjustments? Nerlens, what do you think about the pace of the game? You think we're playing a little bit too slow or it's a little bit ratty and we're taking poor shots?'"
    Now, the Sixers had more invested in Nerlens than we do in any of the five prospects currently.

    But how we have developed Val to date (and to a lesser extent TRoss) is not promising. Gregg Popovich has talked about how it's important to put players in crunch time so that they can be learn and be prepared by getting reps in those situations.

    Val on our team, in his third year, was 9th in minutes in the 4th quarter. He played 30% fewer 4th quarter minutes in his third year than he did in his second. He played less than half the 4th quarter minutes of either Lou Williams or Greivis Vasquez, neither of whom is on our team any longer.

    That is the kind of short-sighted usage against which I have argued for the entire duration of Casey's tenure here. You need to give young players gametime reps. Period.

    Dante Exum is two months older than Bruno and has already amassed 1800 more minutes than him. That gap will only expand this year. I don't buy the argument that we are in a win-now environment that precludes developing youth, because great teams find a way to incorporate development into winning. As a 19-year-old rookie, 28th pick Tony Parker played 2300 minutes for San Antonio.

    So what are the benchmarks for progression?
    I'd like to see Bruno get 15 minutes a game this season, assuming he isn't a complete disaster. I'd like to see him get the opportunity to do more than just catch-and-shoot. If he handles the rock and screws up, that's okay. But he isn't going to get comfortable unless he is allowed to screw up.

    I have even lesser hopes for Bebe and Delon. If they can get minutes here and there that aren't garbage time I'll be happy. Delon will probably see the most time, I think. I'd like to see Delon work consistently on his shooting given that's a weakness of his.

    Anyways, this went on way too long, but the way guys like Val, TRoss, and Ed Davis have been used to date (not to mention Rudy Gay) doesn't give me a lot of faith in Casey maximizing the talent at his disposal. And that wouldn't absolve Masai if they all waste away on the bench; ultimately he is responsible for hiring the staff to develop the prospects.

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    Raptors Republic Superstar 007's Avatar
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    My expectations:

    Bruno: Starter on an average team, key bench player for a championship team. 3 and D.

    Daniels: No expectations.

    Bebe: We traded for him for a 2nd rounder, so if he becomes a rotation player that's a great trade.

    Wright: Same expectations as Bruno, but a shaky 3 point shot and good facilitating.

    Powell: No expectations.



    In my opinion, the prospect development will be a success if 2 of Bruno/Wright/Bebe become good rotational players, and it will be a big success if one of Daniels or Powell becomes one as well.
    The name's Bond, James Bond.

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    Quote Uncle_Si wrote: View Post
    We have 5 prospects that have been acquired by Masai:

    Bruno
    Bebe
    D.Wright
    D.Daniels
    N.Powell

    How many of these guys have to become contributing rotation players for Masai's drafting to be considered a success?

    How do your expectations change depending on where the player is drafted?

    For example, given the massive gamble taken by Masai at drafting Bruno 20th, does that mean he would have to be a better player than say D.Wright who was drafted where he should have been?
    Great topic. Player development is probably the single most important core competency that an NBA franchise can have. The NBA is still in the dark ages relative to MLB and the NHL's multiple minor league feeder systems, where a franchise can have 10's or 100's of players under their control. Not sure if it's the player's association or the owners are to blame for creating a relatively closed market and barrier to player skills development. That said, teams like the Spurs, Rockets and now the Hawks are setting the standards on player development.

    In addition to looking at the newer guys (Bruno, Bebe, Wright, Powell, Daniels), we also need to look at our younger rotation players. Have JV, Ross & DD developed to their potential within the time-frame expected? Is the current Raptors franchise any good at young player development?

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    Success : Bruno + Wright + 1 second rounder (powel or Daniels)
    IF 3 becomes part of the rotation, that's a success,even if they become borderline starters, it,s still good.
    You need star to win, but you need good players to get great players and the good ones are so much cheaper IF you draft and develop them.



    Quote Uncle_Si wrote: View Post
    We have 5 prospects that have been acquired by Masai:

    Bruno
    Bebe
    D.Wright
    D.Daniels
    N.Powell

    How many of these guys have to become contributing rotation players for Masai's drafting to be considered a success?

    How do your expectations change depending on where the player is drafted?

    For example, given the massive gamble taken by Masai at drafting Bruno 20th, does that mean he would have to be a better player than say D.Wright who was drafted where he should have been?

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    Administrator Apollo's Avatar
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    Quote Uncle_Si wrote: View Post
    We have 5 prospects that have been acquired by Masai:

    Bruno
    Bebe
    D.Wright
    D.Daniels
    N.Powell

    How many of these guys have to become contributing rotation players for Masai's drafting to be considered a success?

    How do your expectations change depending on where the player is drafted?

    For example, given the massive gamble taken by Masai at drafting Bruno 20th, does that mean he would have to be a better player than say D.Wright who was drafted where he should have been?
    Here is a good article on the odds of drafting impact players at various positions in the draft.

    They define an impact player as a player with 25 minutes/game(and they present their case as support). Let's not debate this point because it'll take us off the rails. What is "impact" is subjective so let's pretend we agree with the 25 MPG stance.

    Based on the data presented in the article here are the three scenarios for the players you listed in terms of the probability they become an "impact" player (average 25 MPG):

    Pick Position Player Age Worst Case Likely Case Best Case
    20 Bruno 19 8.7% 21.3% 34.0%
    16 Bebe 22 8.7% 21.3% 34.0%
    20 Delon 19 8.7% 21.3% 34.0%
    37 DeAndre 23 8.7% 9.8% 16.4%
    46 Norm 22 0.0% 4.0% 8.9%
    *The cases refer to draft class strength and so the middle case is probably the best to look at.

    That said it's likely that one of Bruno, Bebe and Delon becomes an impact player. DeAndre & Norm are most likely going to wash out of the league. No one surprised here, right?

    So, a fair expectation in my opinion would be one impact player and hopefully a couple role players out of the group of five you listed. That would be a success. Anything greater than that would be a huge success by NBA standards.

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    Raptors Republic All-Star slaw's Avatar
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    Quote 007 wrote: View Post


    In my opinion, the prospect development will be a success if 2 of Bruno/Wright/Bebe become good rotational players, and it will be a big success if one of Daniels or Powell becomes one as well.
    Success : Bruno + Wright + 1 second rounder (powel or Daniels)
    IF 3 becomes part of the rotation, that's a success,even if they become borderline starters, it,s still good.
    You need star to win, but you need good players to get great players and the good ones are so much cheaper IF you draft and develop them.


    Wow, those are brutally tough standards. Based on the history of the draft, I would suggest that if one of the five becomes a regular rotation player (20-25 minutes) you are doing well.

    Just looking quickly at the Spurs (gold standard of the NBA) - and this is a really quick wash..... They've had 37 picks since they drafted Tim Duncan (not including this year). Of those, 15 have never played a game in the NBA and another handful had a cup of coffee. Of the remainder, about 9 have amounted to starters, regular rotation players (or close). So, that's about 10 guys over the course of 17 years. And that's really, really good.

    To expect that Toronto, an organization with no history of good drafting or player development can - starting from scratch - hit with 2-3 guys in 2 years seems an impossibly difficult ask.

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    Administrator Apollo's Avatar
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    One more thing to consider. Ujiri's did hit on Kenneth Faried, 22nd overall and Evan Fournier, 20th overall. He's has a history of being able to find talent in the 20's.

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    A success would be to watch our prospects improve, and that's happening this year. Very, very excited for our development program now.

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    Out of those 3 first round prospects, if two become rotation players in the NBA, that's success. If one of them becomes a long term starter for this team, then that's great success.



    When it comes to second rounders, no reason to expect much of them. If 1 in 10 sticks in the league for 5 years, that's solid drafting / development. of course, if you have lots of early 2nd rounders, then you expect more.

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    Norman Powell looks like he could be a second round steal. He works really hard from the looks of it and he sets goals for himself, as oppose to Delon Wright who just seems to go with the flow from the looks of it. I'm probably wrong but Delon doesn't seem to have that intense desire to want to get better.




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    Quote NoPropsneeded wrote: View Post
    Norman Powell looks like he could be a second round steal. He works really hard from the looks of it and he sets goals for himself, as oppose to Delon Wright who just seems to go with the flow from the looks of it. I'm probably wrong but Delon doesn't seem to have that intense desire to want to get better.



    one is guaranteed the other isnt

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    Wright seems uncomfortable in front of the press and expresses himself awkwardly

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    Raptors Republic Starter Bandit's Avatar
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    Interesting question.

    I think that for a team to find sustained success and to compete you need to have at least one contributing rookie scale contract on your roster at all times. By having one of your starters or backup players on a rookie contract playing ~20 minutes a game you open up so many possibilities financially. Note that this means they need to help and not hinder the team.

    However if we want to look to improve in place of sustained success then I think that we have to expect more out of our rookies. I believe that instead of one contributor every 3 or so years we need to see someone step up every other year at least.

    So if I measure that as success, then for the raptors we will need one of those 5 to move into our top 8/9 by the end of the year (With JV and Ross moving off rookie contracts) to at least meet expectation.

    Lets say we can get 2/3 on that list into our rotation over the course of the next 2 seasons then I think we can consider it a success, and that alleviates the pressure to put contributing rookies onto the team out of the draft for a couple years. It will allow the opportunity to leverage the Dleague team and focus on developing players before moving them into contributing roles.

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