August 11, 2010

An Open Letter To Joe Lacob

Greetings, kind sir, and apologies for the dreadfully hackneyed format of this blog post.

Congratulations on your new basketball team! We were delighted to hear of your acquisition (the failure of Larry Ellison to buy the franchise caused no tears in Worrierland), and your hour-long discussion with the Razor and Mr. T was informative and appreciated. It must be a hectic time for you and your partners. You don't even officially own the team yet, and joy-starved Warriors fans risk overburdening you with demands and requests (one of which you've already been kind enough to sound off on).

Our worry-filled cup runneth over... we have no shortage of suggestions, thoughts, gripes and musings. But as your time is limited (and since you'll never actually read this), we will make only one request, one you can fulfill simply by doing nothing.

Do not trade Andris Biedrins.

Not this season, anyway, and certainly not before it. You're hearing a lot of babble about his free-throw shooting and his controversial Latvian interview... your task is to ignore that babble. There's a slam-dunk statistical argument in favor of keeping the guy, but we needn't even resort to that to demonstrate how important Beans's continued presence is. Some general business rules of thumb will do.

1) Never sell low. Trading Andris Biedrins anytime in the near future would qualify. Twelve months ago, he was a 23-year-old coming off of a double-double season, a guy who'd engendered occasional All-Star mutterings outside the Bay Area, a player who was discussed as the centerpiece in deals for Chauncey Billups and Amar'e Stoudemire, among others. Now, thanks in large part to other Warriors employees, he's seen as a wart-ridden goofball. Joe, you didn't become a whateverionnaire by pissing away commodities at the nadir of their value. Biedrins is 24, and on a non-increasing contract... you can stand to wait a while and see if he appreciates.

2) Protect your investments. The above is doubly true because of the summer's key acquisition, the guy who'll earn almost a fifth of what you just paid for this team. David Lee is a guy with many strengths, but "playing center in the NBA" ain't one of them. Alongside a five who protects the rim and cleans up his messes, Lee could be the difference-maker he was paid to be; left to fend for himself in the middle, he's a defensive sieve, and an overall mixed bag at best. The only player on the Warriors roster -- hell, one of the few in the NBA -- that has a chance at complementing David Lee properly is Andris Biedrins. It may not work even with Andris, but it sure as hell won't work without him.

3) Choose the right people. There are rumblings that you may leave Don Nelson on the bench to start the season. While we Worriers quite emphatically wouldn't, there's an argument for ceding to inertia in this case. However, this franchise has hemorrhaged a good number of useful players away in the fat man's name over the years, and while he once provided enough value to make that a worthwhile trade, he no longer provides enough value to justify hemorrhaging away a Twix bar. If you are forced to choose between Andris Biedrins and Don Nelson, please, for the love of fucking fuck, recognize that that choice ain't no choice at all. Andris Biedrins is an imperfect asset; Don Nelson is a noxious sunk cost.

Thanks, Joe. We'd say "good luck", but we're hoping you're an intelligent enough chief executive to not need much of it.

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