Two years ago

Chasing Imports?

Ok, so Greer supposedly made some stupid comment about Wesley being a better option than a fresh import. And supposedly every team and their dog is chasing Randle, Ware, and Trimble.


Lets consider Trimble, and say Holt & Jackson to name a few.
What do they actually teach us?

Well for starters that you can be brilliant, and then come back a few years later and be total shit.

Secondly that never having played in the NBL is no bar to legitimate talent.
Or just look at what Cotton did for Perth in a third of a season?

If a spud team like Cairns can go out, year after year, and find talented imports, then why can't teams who actually have a budget for scouting?

The whole beauty of imports is that the pool is incredibly vast. We could turn the whole NBL into imports only, and barely make a ripple.

Go on one of the sites that list Euro FA imports (ie guys mostly from the states) who have been released.) You could build an entire league just from that list. Not to mention G-League, and all the guys playing in the 3rd & 4th tier leagues.

I'm the first one to say that there are great benefits to stability, continuity, and longevity. But that comes from playing for the same team and coach, not simply from being in the league.

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Two years ago

Where to start?!

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Two years ago

Was there a point?

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Food for thought  
Two years ago

Basketball team owners aren't in the business of making expensive gambles. Proving yourself in this particular league definitely gives you an edge, and it should do. But don't you worry, there will be plenty of brand new imports next year. Every team has at least one or two imports who didn't perform and therefore won't be coming back. But signing known quantities as quick as you can makes perfect sense.

Guys you wont see back -

The imports from New Zealand not named Shaun Long
Demetrius Conger (unless maybe as a budget import. He severely lowered his stock)
David Wear (and Sydney will probably go for 3 imports this year)
Devon Hall
DJ Newbill probably wouldn't re-sign
Any import from Brisbane not named Lamar Patterson
All the imports from Illawarra will be gone
Wouldn't surprise me if Jerome Randle wasn't back in the league either

So basically, you're going to get plenty of new imports.

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Two years ago

Let me see. Greer, with all his NBL experience, up against D2.0. How will we choose.

One thing to consider with Wesley is they can sign him now. Imports in that price bracket are not only a gamble, but may not be signing deals at this point in the year. The Phoenix need to start building a roster to attract more talent without paying a premium. What's an easier sell - "So, Mitch is no guarantee but we've got Ben Madgen aged 34, and we'll get some imports obviously" versus "Mitch is no guarantee but we've got Ben Madgen and Tai Wesley is a proven performer." They would've known about Gibbo a bit in advance so it's a good starting point to have 12x4x sorted if you fall back to Gibbo starting in a pinch..

Wesley's scoring average was 10th in the league, going by Spatial Jam. Restricting to imports, 8th. And that's in less minutes than all but Shawn Long ahead of him.

If a spud team like Cairns can go out, year after year, and find talented imports, then why can't teams who actually have a budget for scouting?
They had one talented import, one mid-range import and one guy that shot under 37% and didn't crack double figures. They also came last, by some margin too.

Didn't Greg Hire volunteer to give up his spot during the season for a third import, but the Cats declined and won the championship? With a retiring Greg Hire over a random fresh import? Effort every minute he's on the court. No drama on the bench. Knows the players of the league and their tendencies.

There are countless locals I'd take over an import gamble if it came to it.

The import pool is broad and flexible, but the bulk of it is guys like Showron Glover.

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Two years ago

I kind of get D2's point as well. Guys that are proven here come at a premium price. There is talent out there for cheaper, but obviously you need to get your scouting and research right.

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Two years ago

I'm not dishing Greer, not the decision to sign Wesley.
It was simply the comment attributed to him that I had issue with.

As the title was meant to suggest (but perhaps not clearly) my point is that having multiple teams chasing the same guy, is pointless and counterproductive.

Of course you take a gamble. SOMEBODY has to.

Are you seriously suggesting there weren't better options out there than Holt? He was no good the first year back, yet thy brought him back again because of this false reasoning. "Oh he knows the system."

Every great import we've ever had in this league was at one time unproven and untested. Should we have left them ALL in America??

Ware is close to the best player in the League. Melbourne will offer him a decent chunk to stay. Is it really wise to outbid them?

But I'll come back to your question, of me or Tommy Greer. The difference is that I would take a gamble on fresh (properly scouted) talent, whereas guys in his position are trapped into making safe decisions.
If he hires Ware, even at some awful premium that threatens the whole viability of the new franchise, he'll be applauded for the safe move.
But if he tries to unearth "another Ware" and fails, he'll be pilloried.

And let me ask this.
We know that both Cairns and Illawarra have limited budgets. So who do you think cost more? Trimble the unproven or Jackson the former MVP?

Now that said, part of what I'm having a crack at, is the obsession some posters have, with the notion of constantly going back to the same tiny pool of imports, fuelled n my rumours from Boti & co. It's the same very off-season: "Club X, should get player Y, where Y is a current or recently departed import at another club."
Sure, Perth may now go for a big imported Centre, but it doesn't HAVE to be Shawn Long.

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Two years ago

I agree with a lot of what you're saying D2.0 especially when it comes to the richer clubs getting imports that are just wrong for team balance of just flat out suck.

I was a huge Conger fan when he was at Illawarra but boy did his tenure at 36ers not do his legacy any favours. Kinda want him back in the league to prove his worth. Also he is proof that Joey can't always get the best out of his players.

In the NBA there is forever talk about the greatness of a certain player after they become a 2x all star (it seems) and comparing them to greats within their club and then amongst others all time. In the NBL we don't have the luxury of seeing players break many records these days so I think part of the lure of bringing back the great imports is hoping they have careers like Loggins, Rose, Fisher, Crawford, Bruton, Grace, Copeland, Rucker etc... and very few will even be in the same discussion.

I started a thread once the 40th anniversary team was announced and asked what someone like Bryce Cotton needed to make the 50th anniversary team and the responses I got back was that it would be almost impossible for him to be in that team and he'd have to play for practically the whole next decade. He's an absolute champion undoubtedly but he still isn't in that conversation... but every team would do practically anything to find that NBA caliber import that loves Australia/NZ and keeps playing and may want to naturalise and that is a massive reason why we want to nab oppositions' known quantities rather than take a risk again.

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Two years ago

Conger is an athlete, but I think his worst tendencies were magnified in that Sixers squad. Felt like he needed to make an impact every second he was on the court and I remember a few games in particular where he was pivotal in a massive change in momentum for the worst with forced shots and bad possessions leading to runs for the other team.

He's NBL quality, but to me it feels like he might be in the high usage/medium-low efficency category.

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Two years ago

Hard to scout some imports coming into the league. for every Trimble theres a Marcus Thornton that comes in, NBA draft pick that totally struggled. Of course the system didn't help, if he went to Cairns and was the man it may well have been a different outcome. But getting proven knuckleheads like Jeremy Tyler raises eyebrows, did they truly think his talent was enough to make up for his antics. And remember watching DeAndre Jordan in college and Vitale questioning his heart yet Perth brought him in and it was proven. Thought their Ennis experiment worked so brought in a draft pick and it was a bad choice.
Bringing in Conger late was an issue and he didn't really fit. To me he relied on having things run around him and that wasn't going to happen in Adelaide. Looks like Adelaide just looked at his resume and didn't think about how he would fit in.
Trimble would be a massive get for the 36ers but the backup plan of Randle wouldn't be a bad idea. They need a crunch guy who they can put the ball in the last minute or two to get a score, something they didn't really have last year, chucking it into Johnson would just get him double teamed and Sobey was hardly consistent. Moore is a good solid pick that can play multiple positions, not a star, but someone who you can plug in when needed. I'm still on the fence about Wiley, makes some highlight plays but feel he is more an athlete than a basketball player. And his constant carrying on is a distraction, especially to guys like Froling who think that is appropriate behaviour.

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Two years ago

Conger was ok at Illawarra because Bevo knew what he had, a player who to perform well needed 80% of the ball offenceivly and could cover his lapses in defence. That was never going to happen in Adelaide with players they had. Bevo at seasons end also said he wouldn't choose players like that again. Conger only lasted a very short time in div one Italy and was released.
Adelaide need a player that can play the point forward and play defence, Wiley is very good player but is not that.

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Two years ago

Greer/Phoenix strategy at this stage looks like it's based on "better the devil you know"

Gibson and Creek are two of the most experienced NBL players going around, Creek with 8 or 9 seasons and Gibson 12 or 13. Wesley and Madgen are proven quantities.

They need an elite import, of the Cotton/Ware ilk. And obviously they need Creek to actually play. Then a couple more role players to fill the gaps. They're coming together nicely.

The whole thing depends on Creek though. He could make or break season one.

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