Stranger Danger

Posted by Rob Mahoney on February 4, 2010 under xOther | Read the First Comment

Forgot to mention this yesterday, but apparently the security at the AAC may be in the slightest bit lacking. From Jason Quick of The Oregonian, in regard to last week’s game between the Mavs and the Blazers in Dallas:

During a timeout with 41 seconds left in regulation, two women walked onto the court and into the Trail Blazers huddle. One woman wrapped her arms around the waist of Blazers guard Rudy Fernandez from behind. Fernandez, who was not in the game but focused on the plays being diagrammed by coach Nate McMillan, was stunned.

“I was surprised,’’ Fernandez said. “I was listening to the coach on the bench and behind me, she touches me and says, ‘Rudy, I love you. Nice to meet you. Good game.’

“I said, ‘What?’’’

Blazers guard Jerryd Bayless, who was on the perimeter of the huddle, said he saw the whole event transpire.

“They were drunk, obviously,’’ Bayless said. “I was actually close to Rudy, but when I saw them coming, and once they got onto the court, I stepped back.’’

The women were ushered away from the huddle, and amazingly allowed to return to their courtside seats under the basket and watch the remainder of the game, which went to overtime.

Let’s not make this more than it is. That said, like most of the other internet scribes commenting on this pretty bizarre story, I’m curious: why on Earth were these two women, who wandered onto the court and into a huddle, not kicked out of the arena? I’m puzzled. Bamboozled. Perplexed. Fans walk onto the court during a dead ball situation, hugged a player, talked to him, and then were led politely back to their seats?

Looking for Love in All the Wrong Draft Ranges

Posted by Rob Mahoney on May 30, 2009 under xOther | 5 Comments to Read

The Mavs don’t have a very good track record when it comes to finding value late in the draft, though selecting Josh Howard with the final pick in the first round back in 2003.  But the stakes have never been higher, with the Mavs’ few young assets weighing their options in free agency and the Mavs’ 2010 pick in the hands of the New Jersey Nets.  This one counts big time, and it’s up to the management and the scouting team to find the diamond in the rough.

It’s tough, but hardly impossible.  Quality players pass right under the noses of many a team year after year, leaving latent value late in the draft.  The Mavs pick at 22, which is just a shade closer to the lottery than to the Mavs’ customary position at the draft’s tail.

Here are the picks at 22 this decade:

2008 – Courtney Lee
2007 – Jared Dudley
2006 – Marcus Williams
2005 – Jarrett Jack
2004 – Viktor Khryapa
2003 – Zoran Planinic
2002 – Casey Jacobsen
2001 – Jeryl Sasser
2000 – Donnell Harvey

Three of those players (Courtney Lee, Jared Dudley, Jarrett Jack) have shown rotation player chops.  Lee is the most notable as the starting 2 guard of an impressive Orlando team just one win away from the Finals.  In fact, if the Mavs could magically re-draft Lee this year, they’d be in pretty good shape.

Just for fun, here are picks in the late first round (20+) :

2008
Courtney Lee (22)
Nicolas Batum (25)

2007
Wilson Chandler (23)
Rudy Fernandez (24)
Aaron Brooks (26)

2006
Renaldo Balkman (20)
Rajon Rondo (21)
Kyle Lowry (23)
Shannon Brown (25)
Jordan Farmar (26)

2005
Jarrett Jack (20)
Nate Robinson (21)
Francisco Garcia (23)
Jason Maxiell (26)
Linas Kleiza (27)
David Lee (30)

2004
Jameer Nelson (20)
Delonte West (24)
Kevin Martin (26)

2003
Boris Diaw (21)
Travis Outlaw (23)
Kendrick Perkins (27)
Leandro Barbosa (28)
Josh Howard (29)

2002
Tayshaun Prince (23)
Nenad Krstic (24)
John Salmons (26)

2001
Brendan Haywood (20)
Gerald Wallace (25)
Jamaal Tinsley (27)
Tony Parker (28)

2000
Morris Peterson (21)

It’s certainly worth noting that even the 2005 draft, predicted to be a weak draft class among pundits and largely looked at as a failure in comparison to its contemporaries, still produced productive players late in the first round.  Blake Griffin is no Tim Duncan and the consolation prizes may have their flaws, but that doesn’t mean true commodities can’t be found late in the first.

Next week I’ll start examining potential picks for the Mavs, starting with those rumored and confirmed to have scheduled workouts with the team.  Some of those players seem poised for success on the pro level, and others may not even be top competitors in the D-League.  As fans, we can only hope that MGMT not only makes the right decision in assessing the talent of a potential pick, but also in picking talented players to fill holes in the Mavs’ rotation.