Posted October 29, 2013

Anonymous NBA general manager says team plans to tank

NBA
Kansas freshman Andrew Wiggins is expected to be one of the top picks in the 2014 NBA Draft. (Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

Kansas freshman Andrew Wiggins is expected to be a top pick in the 2014 NBA Draft. (Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

The season of tanking has begun in the NBA.

One NBA general manager says his team plans to tank all season in order to secure one of the top prospects expected to declare for the NBA Draft next season.

In an article written for ESPN the Magazine, the GM justifies his logic by saying “the last place you want to be is in the middle.”

“Our team isn’t good enough to win and we know it. So this season we want to develop and evaluate our young players, let them learn from their mistakes — and get us in position to grab a great player. The best way for us to do that is to lose a lot of games. This draft is loaded. There are potential All-Stars at the top, maybe even franchise changers. Sometimes my job is to understand the value of losing.

We’re not alone. Look at the 76ers. Since the draft in June, I don’t think they’ve signed a player or made a trade to add a legitimate player. A bunch of us realize that our teams aren’t good enough talentwise to do anything. You’re going to be bad. There’s no way around it. And even if you finish 0-82, there’s still a 75 percent chance you don’t get the No. 1 pick. We’re just going to take our lumps and hope our number gets called.”

GOLLIVER AND MAHONEY:  68 reasons to watch the 2013-14 season

By that statement, one can assume it’s not the 76ers general manager that wrote the piece.  They are expected to be one of the worst teams in the league.

SI.COM: SI.com’s 2013-14 NBA Crystal Ball

 


29 comments
DSmithy3211
DSmithy3211

Aren't the benefits of tanking vastly overrated anyway?  Since the draft was introduced, only one team has won a championship with a #1 draft pick that they selected: the Spurs (Duncan and Robinson).  #1 draft picks will either leave your team and win elsewhere (Shaq, LeBron...and to a lesser extent Iverson, Webber, Howard) or they will have flamed out in the first place (Kandi, Kwame, Bargnani).

AndrewLynch
AndrewLynch

The Celtics are tanking this year.  The 76ers are trying to tank and it seems they can't even do that right.  That's two that are obvious.  Half of the league is selling tickets so other teams can come into your town and crush your home team, so you can see LeBron or whoever, because he's the superstar that they call different fouls for.  (like the Globetrotters)  They take franchises out of cities even when they have rabid fan bases and support like Seattle and move them where they know they will fail just for short term profit.  Flopping is a very successful strategy.  This is the NBA.

JeffreyClinansmith
JeffreyClinansmith

Probably was the 76ers GM in that article. Gut instinct. He is calling out his own team pres!

Chucho320
Chucho320

The GM should have the guts to admit it was him, so the fans don't bother spending a dime on the product they're mailing in this year.  

Palindrome
Palindrome

The most insane thing about teams tanking is that there is no evidence that it actually works. All it produces is basketball that isn't worthy of the money that hard-working fans pay at the gate -- and gm's that get to keep their jobs longer/have excuses for why they are not winning. 

Insanity in individuals is rare, but in groups it is the norm. It's amazing how all of these brilliant, billionaire owners get duped by their executives -- the role of the NBA personnel executive should be studied in every business school program as the real-life definition of moral hazard.


GTT
GTT

Danny Ferry?

deckbose
deckbose

"We’re not alone. Look at the 76ers. Since the draft in June, I don’t think they’ve signed a player or made a trade to add a legitimate player."

Meanwhile, the 76ers beat the Miami Heat in their home opener. 

deckbose
deckbose

I doubt this is a new sentiment. The only thing new here is saying it to a reporter. 

M20
M20

The weighted draft lottery no longer works, so just scrap it. Give all the non-playoff teams an equal shot at the first pick. No more incentive to be terrible.

eddie767
eddie767

I still think "anonymous" is the Philly GM. Just b/c he mentioned them in comment shows it. They are also the only team not to have signed any long term contracts for any vets. So after MC WWms. blew up on Heat look for him to see some time on IR,for something. 

Delegator
Delegator

It's a great idea to tank so that you can get a shot at a top 3 pick like Pervis Ellison, Sam Bowie, or Len Bias. Excellent strategy.

bambam824
bambam824

Saying your team is going to tank is the chicken way of saying your team stinks and you know there's nothing you can do about it.

jbber
jbber

So he stays anonymous, but calls out Philly. Classy

JordanJunkie28
JordanJunkie28

This happens in every sport.  The Colts sucked for Luck. sucking gets you a lot in this world.

PHIFAN20
PHIFAN20

Lmao watch all the top 2014 picks end up sucking

KenTi
KenTi

I'm betting this is the Suns GM.....

ShawnKemp2012
ShawnKemp2012

This is why the draft lottery should be reconfigured so that the bottom 3 teams cannot possibly win 1st pick and teams just missing the playoffs (9, 10 seed) aren't punished for actually competing for playoff spots.  The NBA system is so broken its not even funny.   The fact that 'anti-flopping' rules had to be implemented last year show how pathetic Stern has let this league become over the years.  There's a culture of non-competition totally engrained into every facet of the game now.  From players, to owners, to the commissioner.  Look at last years Eastern Conference finals.  Players constantly flailing all over the floor.  And yes, it was Miami doing most of the flopping.  And all you people who say I'm a Miami hater, get a life.  You couldn't pick Rony Seikaly out of a line up.      I"m such a huge basketball fan, I just hate watching the game deteriorate.  

JBB1
JBB1

Well, here's the moment the NBA became officially unwatchable.  Game 1 hasn't even been played and at least one team is committed to LOSING as many games as they can, all for the chance to draft the next great bust.  If the commish's office doesn't fine this franchise at least $50 million, then all season tickets holders should boycott the first month of the season.

kt2112
kt2112

@deckbose  no name just could be a made up story who as a gm would want to tank in a performance based job. the league needs to shrink about 2 teams. 76ers are just stupid sir they traded and bet on a center with bad knees there is a difference between stupid and intentionally tanking

eddie767
eddie767

@Delegator Why'd you include Bias,the first two are ok. If not for his"friend" Bias would've been a great NBA player.

danielfolsom
danielfolsom

@bambam824 Actually it's the opposite - as he points out, you could make deals trading away younger prospects for currently better players and more wins - but he's not doing so because he believes in those prospects and he thinks he can get a superstar in the draft.

WCoastPro
WCoastPro

@JBB1 Don't buy it. Product is too good. Out of 10+ games per night how many will really be impacted by a tanking mentality? One? 

danielfolsom
danielfolsom

@JBB1 You're an idiot if you think this hasn't happened before - tanking isn't a novel idea. Also this isn't really losing intentionally - it's not making trades that would help you win short term, preferring to keep a younger, more mistake-prone team and hoping to get a superstar in the draft.

jbber
jbber

@JBB1 why just the first month? Sounds like there won't be much to watch all year

deckbose
deckbose

@eddie767 @Delegator We don't know that for a fact, but I agree with you that Bias doesn't fit in with Ellison and Bowie. Seems there are a few others you can throw in there as well. Oden, Marvin Williams, Jay Williams, Chris Washburn . . .