Recently, I just stumbled across a topic named "Contract Killers," where it discussed some of the worst contracts signed this offseason. I noticed Tiago Splitter's 36M/4yr contract up there. Immediately offended, I put my Spurs fanboy pants on and decided to make a response. Seeing as I put research into it, I decided to make it a whole topic just to put this whole deal to rest.
People are just looking at him based on just seven games against one elite team rather than his whole body of work last season. The same thing has been happening to Manu Ginobili this whole offseason, despite that fact that he was very capable player and sixth man throughout the whole regular season. Had the last 2 games turned out differently, no one would be talking about this anyway.
I have been a big believer in Win Shares as the best measurement of a players overall contribution. I have always felt that PER, the stat developed by John Hollinger of ESPN, over valued some players, and it was my gut instinct that it overvalued players with that dominated the ball on the offensive end.
Just to compare Splitter, I did a couple of comparisons of win shares based on many of the starting/rotation PF/C's of the league, and sorted them based on total win shares gained throughout the season.
Where does Splitter rank? 14th. Just one spot behind Duncan himself. That's pretty impressive, being ranked ahead of such notables as Zach Randolph, Dwight Howard, Joakim Noah, Lamarcus Aldridge, and Nikola Pekovic. Excluding many of the players on this list that don't play C with any regularity, that leaves Splitter as the 7th/8th best C in the group based on win shares.
As for being a defensive C, I'll give everyone some credit there, as based on DWS, Splitter checks out at a very pedestrian 23rd. However, Duncan is currently cast as the teams anchor on defense, as he rates 3rd among PF/Cs 6'8" (excluding Paul George, he only played 1% of his minutes there.) That's only behind Durant and Gasol. Sort out all the PFs. Include only people 6'10" and taller (Sorry Chuck Hayes, but that's the minimum I feel a player has to be to play C regularly), and Splitter shoots up to 13th.
Now lets move on the topic of minutes. As everyone knows by now, Popovich is famous for resting many of his older starters and trusting his euro-bench to play big minutes, was Splitter being affected by this? Yes. Due to Pop's very balanced rotation, Splitter only played 25 MPG. If you extrapolate his numbers to 48 MPG, guess where he ranks?
That's right. FIFTH.
Ahead of Griffin, Ibaka, Lopez, McGee, Hibbert, and many others.
Not bad for a soft Euro with no hands.
I think Splitter is very solid, although his playoff performance last year definitely left something to be desired. That being said he was a 10 ppg 7 rpg starting center playing in a system where he was not a top option and he provided good defense in those minutes.
I think you made some good and valid points.
That being said, I don't care AT ALL about a list that ranks Greg Smith above Al Horford, Z-Bo, and Joakim Noah as far as how effective they are and how their presence on the court effects their teams' wins.
I think Splitter is an above average NBA center who could start full time for a number of teams and probably will start full time and play a bigger role for the Spurs when Duncan calls it quits. He might be a little overpaid, but I still think he's in the range of his team value.
1 thing that i've noticed is that since Splitter's been inserted into the starting lineup,Tim Duncan seems to have turned back the clock and returned to being a 1st Team All Nba performer...
Splitter should give Popovich half of that 36 million dollars,becuz Pops saw how well he complimented Duncan and the little things he does to help make the Spurs win.....
He played well against the Lakers bigs....And alot of people expected my Grizzlies to dominate the Spurs,mostly becuz Memphis has the best center/power forward combination in the nba in Defensive Player of the Year Marc Gasol and Zack Randolph,both all stars........And they were facing an aging Tim Duncan and a scrub in Splitter,but Spitler held his own and helped to shut down Z Bo........
But if you're paying a guy 10 million a year,he should be on the floor in the 4th quarter and not on the bench..And he should average more than 6 rbs and 0.8 blks......So if you look at his stats only he's Overpaid....But for what he brings to the Spurs,he's not Overrated....
Sorry I cannot add more to this discussion at the moment but as a 'Spurs fanboy' I would expect you would know that Splitter is Brazilian and not 'a Euro'.
I was not surprised by the amount Splitter received, just the team that did it. The Spurs had this one window to adding a team that was seconds from winning the title, but chose to only make minor changes. I still think with the guys who changed hands (Millsap, Jefferson, Brand, Landry, Kirilenko, Mbah a Moute dealt in a give-away trade, and Webster) that they could have been more aggressive to stay on top. I would have liked a solid defensive wing behind Leonard, which would have been beneficial when Kawhi slides to the 4. I also would have thought a more offensively skilled player up front would have been helpful. Elton Brand is still a good defensive player and brings far more to the table offensively. Even though he is shorter, he has the bulk and length to compensate. Plus, he has two more good years left, which would align with the contracts of Duncan, Parker, and Ginobili. In comparison, I don't think coming away with Belinelli and Splitter is the best of the realistic possibilities. It is not a disaster, but it is not worthy of praise. It is water under the bridge at this point, though I am still hoping for another wing who can defend to be added before next year's playoffs.
As long as Duncan and Parker stay healthy, San Antonio is going to be near the top for the next two years. If that is the case, then nobody is going to complain about the Splitter money. The possible problem down the road would be if Duncan retires in a couple years, because Splitter does not have the skill level to be an anchor for a frontcourt. He doesn't have much range, is not particularly strong, and might not be as valuable on a team that is not the gold standard in passing and unselfish efficiency. Still, they will have two years to look for the longer term, and the search for the next Vucevic, Landry, Millsap, Marc Gasol, etc will be on.
The Spurs tried to acquire AK47, but it didn't work out. I'm sure they would have taken Millsap at that crazy discount... but they probably had no idea he would be that cheap.
Splitter fits perfectly on the team, as others have described. He had a disappointing series against Miami, but that was also due to the specifics of small ball.
If Splitter was more skilled, however, he would have forced the Heat to go bigger. If he could have worked Battier, Miller, or Haslem the way Millsap, Jefferson, or Brand could, it would have been the Heat who had to adjust.
You figure that Splitter has improved each season and has good size. Then your figure that Duncan has no more than two more seasons? You sign Splitter for four, so when Duncan hangs it up, the Spurs will still have a "big man" under contact with the Spurs. I think Parker/Manu/Duncan will hang it up together in two seasons?
When I originally created the topic "Contract Killers" the point was more to see who everyone felt like was overpaid. I was hoping for a few names to be thrown around and to get some good perspective as to why. I'm fairly disappointed because somehow its become completely about the Tiago Splitter contract, but to that end I'll make a few points.
-Someone pointed out to me that Tiago Splitter's contract is top heavy so every year it will be a little less. By the time the contract hits it's last year it'll be about 8mil which to me is a little more in the realm of understanding.
-BothTeamsPlayedHard (the guy above me) hinted at something I've somewhat suspected. In 2 years it looks like the Spurs are primed for a rebuilding phase. As mediocre as I believe Splitter to be, a player who fills a huge need to a potential championship roster is worth 10 mil. However, his is the longest running one on the team. Given the Spurs situation I disagree with the length of the contract more than the annual salary. I don't think Splitter is a cornerstone piece.
-I chose 5 of what I felt like were my least favorite and though I didn't state it, I put them in order from least detrimental to most so Splitter was more a last minute throw in. I took several things into account: Does it match their talent? How long is it? Was the contract designed to lure a good talent into a lesser franchise? After considering everything Splitter contract made little sense to me.
The bottom line is this. I've seen Tiago Splitter play and I didn't see a player worthy of 10mil. Period. 7mil for 4 years? Ok. 10 mil for 2 years? Alright. It's impossible to say who's right or wrong because its a matter of opinion. The plain and simple truth is if he has the contract he obviously did something to get it. That being said ALL NBA players deserve their contracts.
at this point... I think hes somewhat overpaid... if he improves his game... hes gnna get more minutes and improve his stats which would allow him to play up to his contract over time... im not a fan of splitter at all.. hes a solid player whose in a perfect spot with the spurs.. but im with BTPH... I was surprised the spurs gave him that money after his playoff performance
That belongs to DeAndre Jordan!!!
DeAndre has about the same talent level of a starting high school center. Yet he's gets paid to play basketball in the NBA. I wouldn't guard him outside of 3 feet from the rim.
He's a starting caliber center and he's better than the likes of JaVale McGee and DeAndre Jordan who are both making more money. According to that market, 9 mill per is a good price.
I think you're using the wrong word.
He's not overrated because nobody really thinks he's all that fantastic to begin with. He's the 3rd best defender on his team and the 5th option offensively on the floor at all times.
I think you meant to say overpaid. Because for a guy that's the 3rd option defensively and 5th option offensively when he's on the floor to make 10mil is kind of a lot. But hey, big men have been getting paid recently so if the Spurs didn't pay him, I'm sure someone would.
splitter is very legit, well rounded, and disciplined and well coached and mentored from the spurs coaching staff to duncan himself. i see him only getting better barring injury, and he deserves his contract. splitter is a great example of a team player.