View Full Version : 6/13 ESPN Insider - Chat with Chad Ford

06-13-2003, 11:48 AM
Chat with Chad Ford

Chad Ford: Hey everyone. Thanks for coming. It looks like the NBA Finals are putting everyone to sleep. At least you have the NBA Draft to wake folks up.

dan(NYC): I hear a lot of experts warning against expecting too much from Lebron too fast. Seems like there are less cautions about Milicic though he's even younger. Is that because expectations need more tempering with Lebron, or Milicic is more ready (more pro experience), or something else?

Chad Ford: A couple of things. Darko's played against a much higher level of competition in Yugoslavia. Two, the expectations (especially now that he's on a veteran team) are so much smaller. If Darko averaged 10 and 6 next season, it will be tough to call him a bust. If LeBron does that, the fans will burn down Gund arena.

Greg (Naperville, IL): I was fascinated by the book Moneyball, in which baseball GM Billy Beane states that the main measure of a player is how he performs in the game, and not how his body looks or how he does on individual tests. Do NBA scouts place too much stock in individual workouts and the "NBA body"--and not enough in how a player performs on his team?

Chad Ford: It's a good question. Most teams will tell you there's little that they actually learn from an individual workout. So whey do they spend the money doing it? Because it does matter. Size, strength and quickness matter in the NBA -- especially on the defensive end. Rookie who lack these qualities usually struggle for years. Guys like Amare Stoudemire, who have them, can step in right away. It's a mixed bag.

Robert from Farmington Hills, MI: Now that it is clear that the Pistons will take Darko Milicic, as one of the few people to actually see him play, what position do you think he will play (based upon his lateral quickness the 3 seems a possibility/match up nightmare)and how much do you think he will contribute his first year.

Chad Ford: I think he's a four. The reason he's going so high is that he plays aggressively with his back to the basket. That's his real added value. He can play some center and small forward, but his career is going to be made in the paint.

Kevin Toronto: Any Insider information on the Raptors' workout with Pavel yesterday?

Chad Ford: He's in the mix for them at four along with Chris Bosh, T. J. Ford and Chris Kaman. I think Ford is a no-brainer for them, but I've been actually hearing over the past day or so that they're leaning toward Bosh.

Greg (Miami): I saw that Ford worked out for the Heat. Any word on how that went, and if Riley would take him at 5? Are they basically looking at either Ford, Bosh, or Podkolzine. If so, who will be available at that spot and who would you take? Thanks

Chad Ford: The Heat are in a tough position. They need help now and Ford is the only guy on the board than can deliver it. I hear they aren't as high on him as other because of his defensive lapses. They like Bosh. Pavel's probably too big of a project. Kaman is another possibility. Also don't rule out Maciej Lampe here. Fundamentally, he's there. He just has to get more experience.

Robert Chicagp: WHats going to happen in Chicago. Are the rumors of KG going to chicago true and what are the Bulls thinking about doing with their Draft pick and point guards. Is Carmelo in their near future?

Chad Ford: I think that something is going to happen there. Either they'll move up and draft Carmelo (will probably cost them Eddy Curry or Tyson Chandler) or they move down and get a veteran in to help the young core. I'd be shocked if they keep Jay Williams and Jamal Crawford together. Each player has a lot of trade value and the Bulls are really looking for a big sweet shooting small forward.

Danny (Phoenix, AZ): How much of an impact will Pavel have on the tema he plays for this upcoming year? Also, how good is Badiane, really? I have seen mixed revies on him for the past couple of weeks.

Chad Ford: I think Pavel's at least one year away. He hasn't had any quality coaching and it's going to take some time for him to adapt -- a lot of time. Badiane is raw. But he's got an NBA body and athleticism and has shown promise on the offensive end. I think he's a bubble first rounder -- I don't see him slipping past No. 29.

Steve (Garden City, NY): Who are the Bucks looking at with the 8th pick? If Kaman or Lampe are still on the board will they still opt for Hinrich?

Chad Ford: With the sale of the team pending, I think they aren't going to draft a project here. Instead they'll go for a proven guy who can step right in and play. With Payton likely gone, I think someone like Hinrich is the pick.

Keelan (Eugene OR): What do you think that Knicks should do with their pick? I know that they need size but do you think that they are better off with Lampe, Sweetney, or Kaman?

Chad Ford: I think Podkolzine has the most upside here, but it means that the Knicks would have to be patient, I'm not sure they're capable of that. Lampe also has a big upside and would be a nice fit. Kaman and especially Sweetney provide a more immediate impact. They don't need Sweetney however, they already have the quota of underisized power forwards. I can't see them letting Kaman slip through their fingers if he falls to No. 9.

Jonathan (Virginia): If the Wizards traded Stackhouse for Brandon in cap clearing move, would there be many top free agents willing to come to Washington next year? If not, wouldn't the trade be pointless?

Chad Ford: Free agents go where the money is anymore. With so few teams under the cap, their options are limited. So they answer is yes. The Wizards have a decent young core with Kwame Brown, Brendan Haywood, Jared Jeffries and Larry Hughes. They'll add a top 10 pick (someone like Hinrich or Dwyane Wade) and they'll have lots of money. Someone would come under that scenario.

Joe (Los Altos, CA): All's quiet on the Warriors front. Any workout news? If they gamble and don't go for a PG, who would you suggest?

Chad Ford: They've had a lot of guys in. I'm just not sure what direction they go. No one will be able to step in and replace Arenas. I think they're better off taking the best guy on the board -- someone like Lampe makes some sense down the road.

armando (mexico city): what do you think jerry west is doing with memphis picks? don't you think there is some pressure on him to deliver a good pick especially after the gooden fiasco?

Chad Ford: They want to win now. They won't be giving away guys who can play in return for kids with upside. They are looking to find players in the draft who help them get better this year. Someone like Dwyane Wade, Mickael Pietrus or Mike Sweetney would help.

Sean Fort Laudedale: Hey Chad, i was just wondering if you think that Gaines is a better choice than Barbosa for the Magic's style of play. Also do you see them trading up with milwuakee or any other team on draft day?

Chad Ford: I think Gaines would be a good fit in Orlando. He's a good shooter and has nice size. I'm not sure they can be patient enough with Barbosa.

Mike (NYC): Chad, there has been a lot of talk about bigs like Kaman, Rickert, Pavel, and a lot of talk about Kirk Hinrich, but where do you see Nick Collison going. I think he'll be a steal for someone.

Chad Ford: If by steal you mean a guy who can come in a play solid minutes, than yes. If you mean by steal that the guy's going to be a superstar in a few years, then no. Collison is what he is. I think he'll be in New Orleans with the 18th pick. That should be just about right.

Pat (Boston): Any chance the Celtics take a chance on local favorite Troy Bell at 20, or is he still likely to be a second round pick?

Chad Ford: He played well in Chicago, but I don't see him sneaking up that high. Maybe late first round to a team like the T-Wolves or Spurs.

Adam, Platteville, WI: The draft process always drives me nuts when I here about undersized players. Do scouts, GMs, and/or journalists get too caught up in height and forget about ability? Does it become a bit of a game to try to lower stock or is it a label that just seems to stick? It seems to be that Wade has an uncanny court awareness and if I were going to be concerned with anything it'd be his perimeter shot, but I don't here about that at all.

Chad Ford: Again, size matters. Even 6-foot-5 have become undersized at the two. Defense is the key issue. Teams don't want a defender posting you up. Wade shouldn't have the problem because of his lateral quickness and long arms.

Mike (Hershey, PA): I've heard recently that Chris Marcus has been cleared to resume his playing career (the foot is totally healed). I'm sure a team will take a second round flyer on him. The Sixers need a quality big man. Any chance they take him with the 50th pick?

Chad Ford: With Todd MacCulloch nursing that sore foot? I don't know. Marcus will most likely be drafted, but teams will be skeptical. If he checks out O.K. in workouts, he'll be a high second rounder. His upside is still enormous.

Justin (Provo): Any chance of the Jazz trading up to have a chance at a good PF?

Chad Ford: Not sure they need to Justin. Brian Cook, Nick Collison, David West and Sofaklis Schortsanitis could all be on the board when they draft at No. 19. If that's the way they want to go, I think they're O.K. at No. 19.

Brian, Morristown, NJ: Josh Howard of Wake Forest completely dominated his competition last year in the ACC, winning the ACC Player of the Year unanimously. However, many mock drafts have him slipping to the second round. What gives? He'll be like Bruce Bowen with offensive skills in the NBA!

Chad Ford: His 7-foot-2 wingspan will help him. Howard's an example of a guy who does everything good, nothing great. Guys like that always slip. He has to make the transition to the two in the pros. I think he'll be a late first rounder to a team like the Grizzlies (no. 27) or Spurs (no. 28)

Adam (Rockford, IL): We saw Marcus Moore withdraw from the draft this week. Who else will be headed back to school prior to the draft?

Chad Ford: Not many. Everyone seems to be going in the opposite direction. I think Jameer Nelson will go back to school. He should Ditto for Andre Emmett. I think we'll also see at least one or two high school kids (Charlie Villanueva, Travis Outlaw) sent back to sender.

Oktavijan (Detroit, MI): You've mentioned Zoran Planinic as one of the guys making a run into the first round. Where do you see him going? Also, any info on Kresimir Loncar and the possibility of him getting drafted?

Chad Ford: He's worked out well,. At 6-foot-8 he's got great size for a point guard. His body reminds me a lot of Brent Barry's. I'm not sure Planinic is a star in the league, but he could have a Barry type career. I think he'll go anywhere for No. 21 to Atlanta into the second round.

Kregg (Toronto): Has this draft suddenly become more deep than people thought it would...there a some quality players aside from LeBron to be taken.. what are your thoughts??

Chad Ford: The influx of international players and high school seniors makes it deep. There are only three franchise players in the draft, but there's a lot of parity after that. It's going to be fun to see what does down on draft night, the draft should be in major flux. I think we'll see some big surprises. I'm still going with 12 international players (4 in the lottery) in round one, two high school players and 15 Americans.

Justin (Detroit): If you could pick 3 breakout players of next year, who do you think they would be?

Chad Ford: 1. LeBron. He's on the right team to do it and despite the hype, he has the skills.

2. Carmelo. If he's in Denver, he's going to put up big numbers.

3. Mickael Pietrus. I think people will be shocked by how far along this kid is. He's got the chance to suprise a lot of people if he's on the right team.

Chad Ford: I've got to run out a little early folks. Thanks for all of the questions. We'll do this again next week after the deadline passes for underclassmen to withdraw from the draft.

06-13-2003, 12:17 PM
Thanks as always, OP. Good read.

Lonely PSU Mavs Fan
06-13-2003, 12:25 PM
"Chad Ford: The influx of international players and high school seniors makes it deep. There are only three franchise players in the draft, but there's a lot of parity after that."

I think this is a ridiculous statement. I dont think you can pick players out of a draft and designate them as franchise or non-franchise players. Look at all drafts in the past and you will find guys not in the top 3 that became franchise players, and you will find players in the top 3 that are only role players.

Just one example: the '98 draft.
top three

franchise players:
9. Pierce
10. Nowitzki
5. Vince Carter (Borderline franchise now i admit)

06-13-2003, 12:32 PM
Badiane is raw. But he's got an NBA body and athleticism and has shown promise on the offensive end. I think he's a bubble first rounder -- I don't see him slipping past No. 29.