Monday, July 24, 2006

Blazer vs. Blazer V

Sorry for the interruption over the weekend but my internet service was down for most of the last two days (insert angry emoticon here). Now that it's back, we'll pick up where we left off by moving the weekend topic to Monday. I was trying to give this a rest for a while, having talked about it quite a bit in the first couple months of the blog, but it was suggested and we need some excitement around here, so here goes...

Let's say you must trade one and must keep one. Who do you trade, Zach or Darius? Why?

Assume that you're going to get decent, but not spectacular, value for either, according to their respective talent. (In other words, no superstars are coming this way but you'll get a medium-good player or a lot of cap space for Zach or a decent or a little cap space for Darius). Consider any issues/reasons you wish.

I'll weigh in with a detailed reasoning tomorrow. Fire away!

--Dave (blazersub@yahoo.com)

12 Comments:

Blogger Oneill said...

Darius is the obvious choice for me. I his contract isnt as much of a monster as Z-Bo's but the bottom line is he wants to leave. We all saw how he plays when he doesnt want to play for this team. When we are trying to build a cohesive young team you dont keep a disgruntled wanna-b superstar in the lockeroom.

11:55 AM  
Blogger Ken said...

I trade Darius. I said last year that he gets one good chance. I don't see that he did anything with said chance.

Now it's Zach's turn. This is your year, Zach. Sink or swim. I hope he swims.

12:23 PM  
Anonymous fatty said...

welcome back dave,it's a no
brainer fatbo must go because
he's not going to be the go
to guy when it's all said and
done,also he's the most obvious
blackhole in the league....
once he gets the ball it's
definately not coming back out
clearly one of the most selfish
players in the nba... also you
blazer fans keep giving him
excuses,sean deveney said it
best,the blazers love malcontent
players and until fatbo*miles
are out of town this situation
will continue to be on life
support....welcome back dave....

12:47 PM  
Blogger BLAZER PROPHET said...

I’d trade Zach. Granted, it’s a close call, but Darius is more of a defender and when motivated can really play. Zach’s stats are very misleading and his trademark is that he will be too selfish and turn the ball over late in games and is incapable of playing defense. To me, he’s the greater liability.

12:54 PM  
Anonymous Dr. Dave said...

With the parameters you set (one must go, one must stay) I say keep Darius. Around the league, Zach is the more marketable of the two. He has a reputation, at least in some circles, as a force inside. But in Portland, he has not shown leadership qualities which is what this team needs now. Even if we got a mid-level veteran in return with shepherding skills, we would be ahead in my opinion. I think the Blazer staff would like a more up-tempo game to compliment Martell's pull-up shooting and the passing (Sergio) and speed of our youthful backcourt. Zach's offensive game is more suited to the halfcourt.

Darius should stay if for no other reason than to get his value back up. No one wants him right now and we would not get much in return by trading him now. If he wants out, it would be to his advantage to swallow his pride and play like we know he can play. If that happens, and the fans get behind him again, he may want to stay. And we may want him to. It wasn't that long ago when he WAS doing good, just before his injury. And Darius' game was made to order for a comeback-starved fanbase.

2:12 PM  
Blogger Eli said...

Easy one, Zach is obviously the player that fits least well on the current roster. He's selfish, plays no D, the guy can't even set a proper screen. On top of that his contract is disgusting and he's a headache off the court. I mean sheesh, all Darius has done is get mad at his coach and ask to be traded. Zach is a menace, between dog fighting (I know he wasn't charged but he and Q were pretty tight, your telling me Zach never went to a dog fight?) and late night street racing, Zach has constantly been a trouble maker. He seems to have a sense of entitlement both on the court and off that I find galling.

We also have too many power forwards (including a young fellow we drafted that will need plenty of playing time), and not enough small forwards. We need a starting small forward right now in a bad way. Darius can play both forward positions depending on the match up, I don't think we can afford to lose him right now.

Zach and Darius are a bad combination, I'm willing to agree to that, but Darius in the right atmosphere will be a much more complete player than Zach. I say we give Miles the second chance that other teams have not given him. Without Zach around he might just blossem into the leader we've always hoped he could be.

4:26 PM  
Blogger Matt Rognlie said...

I say Zach. It's possible to proceed with our youth movement while Darius is still present, but I think that we just can't move forward with Zach on the team. I don't want to build around him, and I don't think he can be a role player.

Zach is almost impossible to trade, so we'd need to accept an awful contract in return. Maybe Kenyon Martin? I'd rather have him than Zach, and he's not quite as domineering, both from the salary and ballhog perspectives. Not the best character guy, but George Karl isn't known to form good relationships with his players. Hell, Ray Allen despised him.

It wouldn't make any sense for Denver to take Zach straight-up—we'll need to orchestrate a multiteam exchange that better satisfies individual needs. I hope it's possible.

According to the media, Darius Miles wants to be traded. If so, he needs to understand his responsibility. We can't trade him unless he plays hard and increases his stock. Maybe the Knicks are still a possibility? We could try Miles for Malik Rose. Hopefully the Knicks would agree to that—Miles has an extra year of salary, but Rose can hardly play anymore. We could then either buy out Rose's contract or keep him on as a veteran bench guy.

5:05 PM  
Blogger Scott R said...

easy choice. you trade zach. he is a one-and-a-half dimensional player. He scores if he's not double teamed, and if he feels like it he will grab a couple of offensive boards. He doesn't even try to play defense, and doesn't know how to hustle. The other thing that bothers me about him is that EVERY single time i hear of a public sighting of him is that there is ALWAYS a "distinct odor of marijuana". Come on man, you make millions of dollars a year and are a publicly recognizable individual. Is the high really THAT good? Give it up dude.

Darius, while he can be a headache, when he is pushed properly will play all facets of the game. he'll d up, fill passing lanes, strip the loose ball, move the ball around on offense and he can slash to the rim. With the 4/5 heavy roster we have now, Zach is very expendable. the 3 spot is all of a sudden very light, and we need someone with Darius's athleticism in that spot unless we can get a servicable 3 back for him.

6:55 PM  
Blogger drawingjeremy said...

I agree with the latter comments, Zach is the man to move if we can only move one. I have spoken with Blazer personelle that believe that he is a chamellion who will shine once Darius is moved, I am not so optimistic. The camera crew for the Blazers refers to Zach as "The Black Hole", when you pass a ball to him, it's not coming back. That is not Nate ball. Zach will not buy into Nate's system, and if he doesn't he is a liability. I read several times last year that the first thing that Zach and Darius would do at half time is run over to the stat sheet to check their numbers, that is not team ball.

Another reason we should move Zach is because he doesn't run, with as young a team as we have I have often thought if only we didn't have Zach we could really run the court, granted I thought this more when we had Telfair, but still think it is in reach.

Finally if we can aquire an expiring contract, which is unlikely, but if we could we would open up a lot more options by moving Zach than Darius.

This is not to say that all offers for Darius should not be listened to, just if it's tweedle dumb or tweedle dumber, I'd go with Zach.

One last point. Could Darius' stock move any lower? It's not like we are going to lose anything by giving him one last shot and benching him (maybe even suspending or releasing him if the situation allows) if he acts up again. Right now we could get something in return for Zach, he puts up numbers. If he stays here he's going to dwindle away while helping our young team lose games through selfeshness, the only thing we'll have to look forward to is the day his contract leaves the books, let's move him now it will be better for him and us.

8:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It depends on what one receives in return. I would want Zach to go, for reasons others have stated- including off court antics. He plays no D, doesn't pass or screen, often won't even try and establish low post position and lofts up long range jumpers ( I mean a PF with 43% or so FG average!?), doesn't run and makes a huge salary. If you are disgruntled with him at $12m a year. juts wait til he makes $17 or so. He may be play better than last year, but a leopard is unlikely to change his spots. The Blazers need rebounding, defense and low post scoring- within the context of the offense- from the PF. Aldridge may be that guy in some years, but I don't see Zack as it. Also he is replaceable with Lafrentz and Aldridge on hand. Miles has skills the Blazers can use if harnessed. Also of court he is newly married and I doubt will make adverse headlines. But either should be moved only for expiring deals, eg Jalen Rose or for some usable talent, eg Maggette. The Blazers need to learn to steer clear of bad contracts.

9:10 PM  
Anonymous TwoDeep said...

Man ... most are wanting to tade our "20-10" guy and keep a player that seemingly can't be coached! I think I'm surprised; but I could easily agree.

If Zach were willing to get into top shape and run the floor there's no way we should be looking to jettison him. There aren't many that can work the inside like Zach. But in the last year or so, it doesn't appear he is willing to even remotely put forth the physical effort required to make a positive contribution to our young, quick and potential run-and-gun team.

Then, there's the Darius dilemma. Certainly talented, but to date seemingly unable to accept authority in any form - very sensitive to criticism. This just doesn't bode well when playing for Nate, an authoritative style coach. But also think back on how he unloaded on Mo Cheeks who was considered a 'player's coach' (I always thought, and still do, that Mo just didn't command/demand enough respect. Notice how most of the players referenced him as "Cheeks", not "Mo", not "Coach Cheeks, but simply "Cheeks". I don't think we often hear Larry Brown or Phil Jackson addressed in this manner). Anyway, as much as I like Darius (he appears to me to be a pretty decent and likeable person), an uncoachable player is not what any team needs.

I guess I'd vote to keep Zach.

9:34 PM  
Anonymous Earl said...

I hate to say this because I was right there with everyone after our almost miraculous, almost comeback in round one of the playoffs a few years ago when Zach was torching everybody. And the next year when he averaged 20/10 and I stole him in the 8th round of my fantasy basketball league I was cheering along with everyone else to give him a big contract to keep him around...

...but geesh! I was too blinded by the numbers he was putting up to realize that the only reason he was hustling was to get that contract. Now that he's sitting pretty with his fat (gauranteed! I'm not even getting started on those) contract he doesn't have to hustle anymore. The reason we signed him to that contract is because he beat everyone to the rebounds by pure effort. He could score at will in the lane and well I suppose that's all he really can do.

The point is he doesn't hustle anymore, he rebounds only when the ball comes his way and never could play defense. And now he'd rather shoot 20 foot jump shots or even 25 footers than step a foot in the lane.

So trade him, get someone that will compliment the team in return, or an expiring contract. Either way, and please please don't bring Kenyon Martin here. I'm not a fan and never have been. He's only real asset was his athleticism but he's lost his explosiveness due to his knee injury. Jason Kidd made him good and he's proving he can't put up the numbers he did in New Jersey without him.

Darius? Well I'm just as dissapointed with his lack of effort, but 1, I expect if from him, and 2, he's the lesser of two evils so just keep him around. At least he plays defense sometimes right?

11:49 PM  

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