Tuesday, March 6, 2007

GM for the Ages

Maybe y'all saw the story about how Kevin McHale was ranked the #1 general manager in professional sports this week by Forbes magazine, who rated GMs according to improvement in their teams' records and certain payroll factors.

Problem is, Kevin McHale is widely recognized as one of the worst GMs in the league, particularly in light of an under-the-table deal he tried to make a few years ago that got his franchise penalized three consecutive first-round picks, a move which certainly hasn't helped the Timberwolves put new talent on the court to take advantage of Kevin Garnett's prime.

Folks in the sports media are understandably having quite a laugh at this one.

So let's contrast McHale with, say, Donnie Nelson (#40 out of 98 on the Forbes list), who has worked in various roles for Dallas since 1998 including the past four years as President of Basketball Operations. Under his watch (here I'll oversimplify several complex trades), Dallas got Dirk for Robert Traylor, got Jason Terry for Raef LaFrentz, got Jerry Stackhouse and Devin Harris for an aging Nick Van Exel, drafted Josh Howard with the 29th pick, and signed Desagana Diop and Erick Dampier as free agents.

Add to that the fact that they got Van Exel and LaFrentz for Juwan Howard and Tim Hardaway (who almost immediately retired), and that means Nelson (if I've got my facts correct) helped Dallas acquire their top 7 players from (basically) Robert Traylor, Juwan Howard, and a late-first-round draft pick.

So Forbes picked a set of numbers and allowed them to overrule common sense. I wonder what Hollinger would say about that?

(By the way, db.com took that same gibe at Hollinger today too, but since I wrote this post yesterday before I read db, I'm not plagiarizing anyone.)


scoots said...

"Jason Terry is playing very, very well, and he has been . . . very good in recent games, and he's . . . doing it again tonight."

I love Bob Ortegel.

Ryan B said...

Did anyone notice some of the comments in the Holligner rankings today? Hilarious. For example, the Suns comment guaranteed a championship if Diaw is healthy. That's a bold statement. Go check them out. They're certainly better than the comment that bumped Scott's off the other day.