Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Timberwolves End the Ricky Davis Era

First KG, and now Ricky Davis? Heavens forfend. The Timberwolves have given up Ricky Davis and Mark Blount in exchange for "Elephant Man" Antoine Walker (his head is monstrous, I'm sayin), Mike Doleac, and intriguingly injured Wayne Simien, some cash, and maybe a First Round Pick. That actually sounds like a pretty good deal to me. I'm about to (ugh) agree with Jim Souhan here:

If you're going to go through a losing season -- and the Wolves' preseason performances hint that they're headed for a horrific won-loss record -- you need to make the losing count. You need to speed the progress of players such as Brewer and Foye and hook the fan base with promise, because the current reality is not going to sell many tickets.

But seriously, this happened without even a rumor out of the media suggesting it might happen. Do you guys have sources worth mentioning at all? Do you just print whatever some flunky in the weight room tells you? How does a trade come off without even a hint of a smell of a rumor?

Why are newspapers failing? Is it because of the New Digital Paradigm? Or is it because you fucks don't have any real sources worth talking to or about?

I thought I was the guy writing from my parent's basement, clad in my footed pajamas. I thought you guys were the one with access, and all that shit. First, the classic insider in Sid Hartman predicts that the Wolves won't trade KG, despite all obvious evidence to the contrary, and then this trade happens without anyone apparently knowing about it? You suck!

To be totally fair, StarTrib beat writer Jerry Zgoda noted a week ago: "The Wolves' abundance of small forwards and big guards, their obvious commitment to youth and Davis' value as a proven scorer and his expiring $6.8 million contract all make him likely to be traded by February's deadline."

Good call, Jerry, even if your thesis was that Ricky needed to become a leader. You buried your own lede, son. And your argument was based on logic, not inside sources. Logic is insider kryponite, Jerry.

Anyway, back to the Current/Temporary Stable of Wolves...

As "news" sources have noted, thanks to their ability to count using their toes, and the fact that they can talk to Kevin McHale, we now "know" that the Timbies are probably not done dealing. Almost certainly not, as they have 3 extra players, most of them young, looking to either prove or redeem themselves.

As we noted in back in June, when he said something very similar, nothing scares a Twolves fan like hearing McHale say, ""We have some other stuff that we're probably going to do inside this deal." Sweet. Does Marko Jaric have a brother?

But given the number of moves the Timberwolves have made it is now fair to ask if they are looking to land some other unhappy superstar. They have 18 players under contract. They can only have 15. They are also in a weird position in which I'd say no one is completely untouchable.

Everything I've heard suggests that Al Jefferson is the least touchable. I would hope both Corey Brewer (who I've said before was underrated) and Chris Richard and Craig Smith are basically untouchable. Most of the other players on the roster, at this moment aren't worth that much, unless bundled. Does anyone want Marko Jaric after his two years here? Mark Madsen?

My best guess is we'll see some combo of workmanlike veterans + a young unproven, upside guy get traded away for a very good player. Something like Juwan Howard + Antoine Walker + Rashad McCants for Kobe.

There must have been a plan in place, because the collective value of every Wolf goes does when everyone else in the league knows they have to cut three of these guys. These trades don't make a lot of sense under that lens. Mark Madsen is the only player who could be cut outright, without causing some consternation amongst the Wolves faithful.

Perhaps we need to replace Juwan Howard with Mark Madsen in the scenario I suggested above. The Lakers did like their hardworking white boy before. And it is the home of Kurt Rambis. Maybe Theo Ratliff figures into this, as his salary coming off books would be a huge enticement for many a team.

I believe, even knowing the painful history of Timberwolf wheelin' and dealin', that something else is afoot. I doubt it is actually Kobe, but perhaps some young gun in a contract year--look for a 3 or 4 player for one player swap from the Wolves soon. Otherwise, these deals just don't make sense.


Jerious Norwood said...

Bringing in Antonie 'volume shooter' Walker is obviously the right thing to do when you're trying to develop young talent. Actually, I'm serious. Walker's fat shot selection and flippant reaction to missing three after three with open teammates will outrage so readily that there will be no pressure on the youngsters to produce. Kevin, you're a genius.

Jess said...

I hate Antoine Walker with the white-hot intensity of a thousand burning suns. Fine, Kevin McHale, you win. I give up. I am done with the Wolves.

Something like Juwan Howard + Antoine Walker + Rashad McCants for Kobe.

It's not remotely funny to even joke about something like that.

Joe said...

I actually think this is a decent trade. We didn't do this trade because Walker is going to be a valuable member of the team, he might not even play, we did this trade because he has a team option after next year and Blount was on the books through 2010. We all knew that Ricky was not going to be with the team past the trade deadline so why waste half a season with him while losing development time for our young guys? We also end up with a conditional first round pick down the road and I honestly hope we don't get it next year. It's not like we need to get younger right now. I do agree that we are trying to move Juwon and possibly Walker but I think those will also be cap relief moves and not for a player who will make a difference.

Andrew Wice said...

Antoine Walker is a bitch. He's the NBA version of a pouty, overhyped WR.

Luckily, Wolves fans won't have to worry about him bricking it up in any meaningful games this year, because they won't be playing in any.