I got a hunch after watching the Bobcats game last night, and I decided to go to the numbers to check it out. Here’s what I got:
Stephen Jackson, 09-10 : 49.8% TS/14.2 AST/12.5 TO/7.2 REB/23.3 USG
Secret Mystery Player X: 48.0% TS/17.1 AST/10.3 TO/5.4 REB/20.7 USG
Stephen Jackson, 09-10: 42%/30%/79%, 44.1% eFG, 10.1% Foul Rate
Secret Mystery Player X: 40%/33%/68%, 43.9% eFG, 13.3% Foul Rate
Secret Mystery Player X is somebody I used yesterday for emphasis, Larry Hughes from his 06-07 campaign with the Cavs. Although he wouldn’t spawn heylarryhughespleasestoptakingsomanybadshots.com until the 07-08 season, when he did play slightly worse, I think 06-07 Larry Hughes is a fair example of the absolute worst-case scenario production-wise for a Cavalier getting 30-35 minutes a night. (Hughes gets the edge over Eric Snow in this regard, as Snow seemed to know that he was a bad offensive player.)
For all the stir that Stephen Jackson possibly becoming a Cav caused earlier this season, Stephen Jackson has played like Larry Hughes with worse playmaking, slightly better rebounding, and better free-throw shooting. His numbers would probably be better in the Cavs’ offense, but that’s the guy everyone was ready to give the starting two-guard spot to for a championship run? (Not to mention the guy who would have killed the Cavs’ cap flexibility until after the predicted date of the apocalypse.)
Why do I mention this? Because with the February 18th deadline getting closer and closer, trade season is about to begin in earnest. And with the Cavs in “2010 is coming” mode and a gaping hole in the rotation (“starting” power forward), this looks like it’s shaping up to be a particularly crazy month and a half for trade rumors. Whenever I’ve done the Daily Dime Live chat this season, I’m immediately flooded with trade questions, like the Cavs are a fantasy team.
So before everybody begins to go stir-crazy over every single trade rumor, I just want to go on record as saying that for fans, the grass is always greener on the other side during trade season. Fans see other guys for a few games, see what they do well, and imagine them only doing those good things when they get settled in with their favorite teams.
But more often than not, guys keep their bad habits when they change jerseys, and the team that traded them realizes they gave up assets to acquire a player who only existed in their imagination.
So as the rumors start up, keep in mind that the “last piece” that Ferry should sell the farm for a stab at this deadline could be another Larry Hughes, or even another Jiri Welch.
By the way, latest batch of 82games data is in. Here’s my favorite oddity:
JJ Hickson has 25 “ball handling” turnovers so far this season. LeBron James has 29. I’m not much for math, but by my rough calculations JJ has used 269 possessions this year, while LeBron has used 1,233. JJ Hickson’s hands are genuinely fascinating. Until tomorrow, everyone.