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Time to admit mistake on Jason Richardson-Brandan Wright trade
POSTED July 30, 11:53 AM
J-Rich: Sorely missed
It’s easy for an NBA analyst, sideline guy, radio talk-show host or sportswriter to take credit when he’s right. We hear it all the time … “I knew that guy was going to be good,” “I predicted that team would win the title,” “I told you months ago that trade wasn’t going to work.”
It’s harder to admit you’re wrong. So, I got to remembering some things I blew it on _ like picking the Lakers to beat the Celtics in this year’s NBA Finals or thinking Danny Fortson was going to really help the Warriors back in the day or saying that Mark Jackson, out of St. John's, would never be a factor in the NBA _ and that Walter Berry would
But it’s time to add another to the list, even if it seems a tad premature: I was wrong to think that trading Jason Richardson to the Charlotte Bobcats for Brandan Wright last June was a good move for the Warriors.
The first mistake I made was overestimating Richardson’s on-court shortcomings and underestimating the intangibles that he brings. In March and April of last season, Richardson’s name seemed to be coming up more and more frequently in the team's locker room.
Players were beginning to wear down and some of them talked about the previous season (2006-07), when a healthy Richardson returned for the stretch run that culminated in a playoff appearance and first-round upset of the Dallas Mavericks.
Of course, Richardson wasn’t around last year, and Wright was no factor.
Richardson’s biggest on-court weakness is his inability to handle the ball and create for others. He’s also an average defender, at best, and he was a terrible foul shooter for the Warriors.
Walter Berry: The Truth
I harped too much on the fact he wasn’t a playmaker and tried to do too much off the dribble. I figured the Warriors wouldn’t lose a whole lot at the position if Mickael Pietrus, Stephen Jackson, Kelenna Azubuike and Monta Ellis got his minutes.
But it wasn’t until Richardson was gone that you realized how much you needed him. He could get you 20 points a game, and you never had to run a play for him. At the same time, he could get you that little turn right, post-up fadeaway from the box anytime he wanted.
It's a bonus when one of your leading scorers can get you points without worrying about having to get him the ball.
I never thought they would miss his 3-point shooting. Richardson shot 38 percent and 36 percent, respectively, in his last two years with Golden State. He shot 40 percent from 3-point range for the Bobcats this year. And he shot 75 percent from the line last season.
The Warriors also missed Richardson’s rebounding. He is a great rebounder for his size, and the Warriors needed all they could get. He played hard every night and was one of the team’s most competitive players. Richardson had a personal stake in the franchise and he played like it.
Richardson came to post every game, which was particularly important because there were times when Baron Davis, the team's most vocal and visible leader, didn’t or couldn’t.
Davis played in 82 games last year and was the unquestioned team barometer. But because he was so crucial to the Warriors, it was virtually impossible for Davis NOT to set the tone. That meant when Davis was going well, so were the Warriors. But when Davis wasn’t going well …
The bottom line is that because Richardson was such a pro and so intense, it helped lessen the team’s overall reliance on Davis. Richardson was key in pushing the team through Davis’ injuries, ejections and random foul trouble.
Fortson: of little help to Warriors
As for the rest of the trade, we know the Warriors did not use the $10 million trade exception they received from Charlotte. You can argue that moving Richardson allowed the Warriors to re-sign Ellis and Andris Biedrins this summer. Fair enough.
But what about Wright?
It is fair to begin expressing concern. And not just because he didn’t play as a rookie _ although that’s part of it.
I’m sorry, you can’t look at it any other way than troubling that Wright couldn’t get onto the court last year for a team desperately in need of frontcourt help, any kind of frontcourt help.
I know Don Nelson’s reputation for not playing first-year guys but c’mon. The Warriors got pounded on the inside last year. Not that Wright is a banger (furthest thing from it), but he’s young, can run and is quick. He should have been able to make things happen, at least.
There are some whispers, too, that Wright isn’t the toughest guy in the NBA and that his pain tolerance isn’t exactly off the charts. Nelson raised the possibility of playing Wright the final week to 10 days of the season, but Wright said his left groin strain wouldn’t allow it.
Wright was mainly ordinary in four games at the NBA Summer League in Las Vegas a few weeks back.
It’s entirely too early to give up on Wright. He's got way too much natural ability to not be a contributor. But I don’t see Wright having as much of an impact in the NBA as Richardson.
And I was wrong for not realizing Richardson had a bigger impact on the Warriors.
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What a stupid article..............
I mean, I was one of the worst hit when J-Rich left as I loved the guy and felt he was the reliable ying to Barons sometimes absent yang...........ie: the guy who speaks with his game and just gets on with it, is reliable (in a total points/productions sense) and deserved to be around for the good times.
But this is just dumb..............would any of of us trade Monta or Beans for J-Rich? and essentially Maggette, who is a much more offensively skilled version of J-Rich (without the 3 ball of course).
At the end of the day, the trade was what it was...........Im not particularly hopeful of Brandan becoming WHAT we need, and this for me is the biggest downside, as Brandan will never be the banging inside intimidator we need him to be...........I can see him being traded in the near future.
Overall, it had to be done, so we could go young and for the future, and also so we could get the full benefit of Baron not being here (if Baron had opted out with us still having J-Rich then we would basically have no cap space and would be pretty f*cked)
So, would any of you guys trade Monta or Beans (one of the two maybe), plus Magette and Brandan for J-Rich??? or even just Maggette and Brandan for J-Rich?.........as that is basically what this guy is saying.
Damn, I wish I got paid to be bored and write pointless crap.
Joined: Wed Jan 09, 2008 12:33 pm
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The timing on this is kind of strange. What made him suddenly decide this now?
I don't really get it. Pointless!
Yea, this guy's article is way too early. Maybe after this year we can make that determination, whether or not Nellie plays him.
Correct me if I'm wrong (I feel that I am), he averaged 2.6 RPG, 4 PPG, and .6 BLK/G with 9.9 MPG. When averaged out over 48 minutes he had 12.6 RPG, 19.4 PPG, and 2.9 BLK/G. Math seems right, but the numbers look waaay too high. Am i doing it right?
All i know is that give wright a season to mature. If he doesn't up his production with more PT then obviously we'll get an answer.
Steinmetz Rebuttal to comments of his article:
Joined: Thu Jul 17, 2008 3:24 pm
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im not gonna lie losing j-rich hit me hard.
i mean that roster is insane! the reason why we finished 42-40 that season was because that trade was done half way into the season. if we started the season like that this year we couldve made the playoffs again.
but still we have to look for the future. imagine this
monta (developed pg skills...hopefully)
marco (ginobli type without the flop)
randolph (him at sf? watch his dribbles. hes a taller odom)
wright (give him time)
biedrins (rebounds and blocks?)
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2005 10:21 pm
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I agree somewhat to what the article is saying. How long are we going to be labeling Brandon Wright a project? He clearly isnt ready for this season, especially if the Summer League is a predicament. We saw already that Marco B and Randolph have it... those guys can ball... AND THERE PROJECTS TOO!!!
The point is, how long will we have to wait for wright? 1 year or 3? If its the latter part, the deal clearly wasn't worth it as then Wright would land on free agency status and establish a whole mess. All that time on waiting for Wright, we could of had or J-Rich or trade him for an actual need. Wright might be a player who by the time develops, we might not even have... making it not worth it!
On the bright side, if he doesn't work out in the next 1-2 years, we have team option to waive him. I believe so. Same with Belli and Randolf.
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Comparing BWright and JRich is pointless. Two different players, two different positions, etc...
That trade was not meant to be a great player for an equally great player trade.
We traded away one of our best players (who had a huge contract) for a hopeful future contributor and some cap space. Not the best trade in Warriors history, but I suppose there was a fianancial strategy to it.
I'm not concerned about Brandon at this point. I think he's going to have a good year. He's plenty tough, he just needs minutes.
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Steph Curry fakin Chris Anderson out of his jock: awesome!
look on Turiaf's face: priceless
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i dont agree that if we started this year with last years core we would have made the playoffs. theres no way that all of BD, monta, jax, AND jrich would have scored 20ppg.
i definitely agree with you, though, in that if we didnt trade jrich, we'd have to have been making moves to win a chamionship now as that core was gonna get older with little potential untapped. right now we have a VERY young core with TONS of untapped potential, and that fact that they are already pretty good is damn scarry.
"the victorious warrior wins first, and then goes to war; the defeated warrior goes to war first, and hopes to win."- The Art of War
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