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Felger: Who is the best GM in Boston?

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  1. jmt57

    jmt57 Moderator Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Our favorite contrarian recently wrote a column about the Boston area's four major pro sports GM's, trying to determine which one is best at his job.

    Who is the best GM in Boston? by Michael Felger of WEEI:


    Two things skew the assessment of Belichick as a talent evaluator: 1. His ability as a coach. 2. Tom Brady.

    There's also the winning. Three Super Bowl titles, eight-straight winning seasons and six division crowns tend to generate a lot of credit -- and so Belichick has justly received it.

    But when it comes to picking the groceries, the analysis isn't as clear-cut. Belichick is such a good coach and has built such a consistently successful program that a lot of his draft picks end up looking good just because of their surroundings.

    continue reading ...
     
  2. jmt57

    jmt57 Moderator Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Felger does add a bit of perspective to his rationale of picking Ainge over Belichick in his next column, Felger's weekly mailbag, in answer to a reader questioning his rankings.

    You’re right, of course. To truly be thought of in Belichick’s league, Danny has to do it more than once. And remember, my ratings were purely related to the draft and talent evaluation. If you include the whole package -- coaching, scouting, cap management -- Belichick is the clear winner.
     
  3. patfanken

    patfanken Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    Felgie made a very good case for Ainge, It might very well be tougher to win in the NBA where there is less parity. I think he was a bit tough on BB in his draft analysis. He wants to separate the Moss Welker trades from the rest of that draft.....and you CAN'T. But that's just Felger trying to continue to tbe the contrarian, since the rest of us think of BB as being a god....a flawed god, but a god nonetheless. ;). He also seemingly dismissed Scot Pioli's contributions in order to make a simpler presentation.

    The fact is it looks like this area is blessed with 4 GMs who know what they are doing. The Real test for Danny is how he will REbuild the franchise in 2011. I hope it won't take 20 odd years to assemble a competitive team, when the big 3 are gone.
     
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2009
  4. old 55

    old 55 PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Felger really gives Danny a pass on his draft whiffs, but holds BB accountable for every player that didn't pan out.

    This is unfair because the rosters and numbers don't add up.
    In an NBA draft, you're picking 1-2 players.
    In the NFL draft, you're picking @ 7 usually.
    In the NBA, you're looking at a much smaller number of players than the NFL when doing your homework.
    I'll give Danny credit for making the best of what he had to work with (excepting the Sebastian Telfair deal and Banks,) but BB is usually picking at the end of the rounds as well and has drafted some great players.
    Could you look at every NFL draft and second guess the Pats choices? Sure.
    But overall BB has drafted very well.
    Look at the Baltimore deal when the Ravens drafted Boller with the trade we made with them.
    We slid down a few picks and got their #1 for the next year in addition to a couple of high picks that played for us for years.
    Look at Wilfork at #21 in the draft - a great value.
    Look at keeping the draft pick and getting Mayo - great decision.
    Yes, BB passed on Stephen Jackson and picked Watson instead.
    If Watson had ever turned into the player that he shows glimpses of now and then, no one would have a problem with that.
    Sometimes players don't reach their potential, despite their athletic ability and all the best coaching.

    If you include the trades as part of this evaluation, the Moss, Welker and Dillon trades look great. A lot of people didn't like the Cassell trade, but keep in mind the guy was a 7th rounder that the Pats parlayed into a high draft pick. The BB stole those 3 players while Danny had to part with Jefferson in order to get KG.

    I think Danny has done a really good job with the Celtics, but I'd give BB my vote in this one.
     
  5. MoLewisrocks

    MoLewisrocks PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    The big difference is one GM is working under a hard cap.

    What Danny did is admirable, considering it is very difficult to dig out of a mess under the NBA's cap and with a lottery draft, but in basketball rosters are small and 1 star can make a difference...and a new owner can decide to absorb the luxury cap. And this year kinda proved it's that one star who often does make all the difference. BB picked his biggest star out of the 6th round of a college draft. He's mined successfully in the later rounds while not making unsurmountable mis steps in the earlier rounds. Theo drafts well, but he also has unlimited resources to acquire expensive FA.

    Everyone is drafted for a system or with a plan or end game in mind (like the draft trades Danny made somehow count as drafts while BB's not so much...).

    But again, Felger does this just to be contrarian.
     
  6. dhamz

    dhamz In the Starting Line-Up

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    Tough to compare GMs in different sports because the sports just aren't similar.

    I think football is harder to build and sustain a winner. Hard cap, short player careers, big roster.

    Epstein has done a great job but his job is made much easier by the fact that he gets to outspend every other team but the Yankees. He can pay a single player more than half what some of his competition pays their entire roster if he chooses. The Sox wildly overpay70 million for JD Drew and he is a nice role player and it works great. Some teams pay 70 million for JD Drew and he gives them what he is giving the Sox and it is franchise killing.

    Basketball is a sport where one guy means so much more than any other sport. Factor in that star players force trades more than in other sports and bad teams want nothing to do with paying big stars and it is very much about being in the right place at the right time - having the #1 pick the right year or having cap space when the next big star shoots his way out of town. Danny certainly put the Celtics in position where if it broke right for him he could take advantage but if Minnesota doesn't dump KG to Boston for 25 cents on the dollar or he refuses to go to Boston does anyone even consider Danny in the top 3 of this list?
     
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2009
  7. Real World

    Real World Moderator Staff Member

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    I don't see what's wrong with his analysis. Personally, I think you could make a case for Theo being 2nd, and BB 3rd. It's a ranking based on drafting ability. That's really not a knock either, since they all draft well. I guess someone has to be 3rd in the order, no matter which way you go.


    Remember, Danny Ainge has said that if the C's got the first pick in 2007, it would have been Kevin Durant's name on the card, and not Greg Oden's. Also, Ainge tried to move Paul Pierce for a pick in the top 3, the year CP3 came out. He loved Chris Paul that year. I'd love to see Ainge with a top 3 pick. I think this year he liked Tyreke Evans a lot. Ainge has simply done more, with less, when it comes to the draft.

     
  8. BradyFTW!

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    Gotta be Belichick. Ainge and Epstein are both good, but Belichick has all of their strengths: 1) managing a salary cap, 2) drafting well 3) staying sustainably competitive. To be fair, can't really evaluate Ainge's drafting ability, since they've traded all of their first round picks, basically, for Allen and Garnett. My only real knock on him, though, is that in 3 years the Celts will be dead in the water.
     
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2009
  9. betterthanthealternative

    betterthanthealternative In the Starting Line-Up

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    This may be the first thing this guy has ever written that i not only enjoyed reading, but actually appreciate the thinking. I'm surprised.
     
  10. maverick4

    maverick4 Banned

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    Belichick is the best GM. 3 Superbowls, best 2-year stretch in NFL history, best 10 year stretch of any franchise.

    He can't discount the Welker or Moss trades. They were great deals, just more great GM moves by Belichick.

    Also, you can't say that just because Belichick is such an amazing coach and can coach up anybody, that it takes away from his work as a GM.
    ------

    Ainge did a phenomenol job too, the Celtics were garbage and in cap hell when he got them. But, Kevin McHale really did the Celtics a huge favor in the KG deal.

    Theo has been great too, but he inherited a team with lots of stars who played big roles in rings.
     
  11. Palm Beach Pats Fan

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    Anyone who cannot comprehend that using two picks in the 2007 draft to get Moss and Welker was an incredibly effective use of those picks ought not to write about football. I doubt that any team will get more production out of players chosen or acquired using their draft picks that year than the Patriots will.

    I still see posts on other forums claiming that Moss and Welker were free agents and the Patriots somehow decided at once to buy a receiving corps with a checkbook.

    Trade 3 picks every year for two guys sure to make many pro bowls for 5 years at least and I will take those draft day decisions every single time.
     
  12. Pats726

    Pats726 Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    Felger stirring up the pot..OF COURSE he picks Ainge..sorry I can't take the bait..Felger is to sports writing as William Hung is to singing........
     
  13. chris_in_sunnyvale

    chris_in_sunnyvale In the Starting Line-Up

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    Best GM...but no trades, FA signings, salary cap management, etc.?

    What?

    I get what Felger was trying to do (Who is the best drafter?), but even then it was flawed as draft picks were used to acquire elite vets like Moss and Welker. Even Ainge used a #5 pick for Jesus Shuttlesworth.

    Interesting article that really doesn't draw a well-reasoned conclusion.

    Regards,
    Chris
     
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