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Why Raymond Felton can't be Elite?

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Why Raymond Felton can't be Elite?

Over the course of time I could not help, but to think about his career situation, which leads me to my question...Why is it Felton cannot be Elite?

Coming out of UNC, Felton was the Star PG, who we all just "knew" would be on the type of level as a DRose, CP3, Dwill, Rondo etc.

At age 27 with 6yrs under his belt, he has made himself a very very decent PG for all to rely on.

The only problem with the Bobcats, was that they were bum as hell and he did not have a decent supporting cast to do anything special with. Keep in mind for him not to be an Elite guy, he managed to put up 13.3ppg and 6.4apg over 5 seasons in Charlotte.

A highlight of all highlighted careers last year IMO, was Felton's breakout year in a Knicks uniform. If a year ago anyone would have told me, Raymond pairing up with Amare` would translate to Double-Double averages damn near 20ppg and 10apg, I would have told you to jump off the Empire State Building, head first.

The only downside to a career year, was the the deal that moved him to Denver, which was another indicator to me that he would be shopped again, with Lawson being the Nuggets PG of the future. In only 21 games played in the Pepsi Center, he still managed to give Karl 11.5ppg 6.5apg.

Now this brings us all up to date... Portland 2011-2012 What should we expect?


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Well, first of all, Felton's

Well, first of all, Felton's numbers increased in NY because of D'Antoni's system, which allowed him to play more possessions unlike when he was in Charolette where his possessions were small because the system was more slow-paced and he was under the eye of PG -strict Larry Brown. Secondly, I predict Felton to have a solid season with the Blazers. I'd say around 13 and 8 is a reasonable projection for him.

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Look, he's not elite, but he

Look, he's not elite, but he is very good. McMillan is a defensive coach, but they have offensive personel, so I assume that they'll look to push the ball.

If they run the break and push the ball and look for three point shooters, I can see him as a 18 and 7 guy for a couple years, but not much more than that.

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"Coming out of UNC, Felton

"Coming out of UNC, Felton was the Star PG, who we all just "knew" would be on the type of level as a DRose, CP3, Dwill, Rondo etc."

I don't think anyone expected that. But I did really like him coming out. I wish he would've gotten more of a shot for a team that doesn't run the slowest offense ever.

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He was the top PG for his

He was the top PG for his highschool class that year (2002), and was the Naismith player of the year but when he was in UNC, he seemed to lose something. By the time he was drafted i didn't think he could be a elite, just soild. But that is a good question, why, in highschool it seemed like he had the tools. but for real i didn't CP3 would be the top PG in the league either, Drose and Dwill were easier for me to peg as a can't miss, and rondo in college to rondo now is like night and day.

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Rico

Agreed!

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"I don't think anyone

"I don't think anyone expected that. But I did really like him coming out. I wish he would've gotten more of a shot for a team that doesn't run the slowest offense ever."

"Well, first of all, Felton's numbers increased in NY because of D'Antoni's system, which allowed him to play more possessions unlike when he was in Charolette where his possessions were small because the system was more slow-paced and he was under the eye of PG -strict Larry Brown."

Ironic you bring this up, because I wonder what you think about Marvin Williams who also happened to be another guy we all "knew" would be Elite. In 6yrs with ATL, he's giving them 11.7ppg and 5.3rbg. Now what would you say if that 11.7ppg and 5.3rpg turned into 18ppg and 9rpg, his stats were inflated due to the coaches system?

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What? All I was saying is I

What? All I was saying is I wish he had been able to play in a fast tempo system from the get-go instead of playing for Larry Brown's Bobcats. I didn't say how he would or would not produce.

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Felton's numbers did increase

Felton's numbers did increase because of D'Antoni's system, but it wasnt a false positive because the team improved. If his numbers would have improved, and they werent winning any more games than before he got there, I wouldnt look much into it.

He still can be elite because he is only 27. Some players it takes longer than others and circumstance is huge. He has been a victim of circumstance for the most part, playing for Charlotte, then being traded from the Knicks, then being traded from Nuggets.

Charlotte was terrible. In the Knicks case, if you had a chance to get Melo, would you give up Felton? In Denver, they already had their PG of the future, they just wanted to wait til they thought he was ready. In Portland, he finally may get his chance to make maximum impact.

He is a true PG and he can play off the ball effectively as well as you saw in Denver. He is fearless getting into the lane and just the way he worked well with Stat, I think he will have great chemistry with L.A.

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I would love to see numbers

I would love to see numbers reminiscent of the Knicks, but that will not happen at all with a chucker in Crawford. Felton should be in the range of 8apg with L.A. & Matthews being good offensive threats as well.

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I don't recall any scouts

I don't recall any scouts saying Felton was elite,becuz scouts were surprised Charlotte took him at number 5..They were saying that was too high for him..But even though Felton's not on the level of CP3,Rondo,D Rose and,Nash,Wall or DWill..He does supply you with good shooting,toughness and he's fearless...I think he's better then half of the nba's starting point guards.....This year i think he's capable of 16pts/8asts a game....

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Felton is a quick, bulky PG

Felton is a quick, bulky PG who can push the ball (he's a strong transition player) and create in the pick and roll game, and he will make clutch shots, but he is one of those guards that can be limited by his size, especially around the rim as a finisher and in half-court sets as a passer. He's not a very good defender either. His jumper isn't consistent at all. He's a solid starter, but he's limited in some areas and that's what keeps him from being a high level PG. He's one of the better PGs in the NBA, but not by much.

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Reasons he is not in the class of the PG's you named

I have a few tidbits on why he probably is not considered "elite":

  • His shooting percentage is pretty damn low. He is at 41.2% FG and 33.3% 3 PT for his career, which is not really that great. You could point to Chauncey Billups having similar troubles with overall FG shooting, but he is a much better long distance shooter, free throw shooter and defender. Plus, Chauncey is not exactly considered elite anymore at 35.
  • Yes, he was considered a top draft prospect and was the man in HS, but that is no guarantee for success. Not to mention, never remember thinking Raymond was a lock for being elite. Deron Williams and Chris Paul were certainly considered much better NBA prospects in 2005. This has translated to them being much better NBA players. They are much more efficient and better in just about every sector of the game.
  • Also, look at the guys you named FG % compared to Raymond: Rose (46.9%), CP3 (47.1%), DWill (46.3%), Rondo (48.6%). Not to mention, all of them do multiple things better than Raymond and have played integral parts on winning teams. Think that might be why they are considered better than him.
  • Ty Lawson is a flat out more efficient PG than Raymond. He pressures the ball better on defense, shoots better and his end-to-end speed is elite. Raymond is a solid athlete and all, but Tywon is so much more efficient, he was the obvious choice to start over Ray Felton.

How is that Marvin Williams analogy even applicable? First of all, Raymond's stats improved and all, but I would say 17.1 and 9 would entitle one to still have to take a swan dive off the Emp State. I mean, Shawn Marion's numbers were about the same with D'Antoni as coach. But, Steve Nash's numbers went from strong to two time MVP candidate.

Raymond had the ball in his hands a lot, was the second offensive option as opposed to the third after S-Jax and Gerald Wallace in Charlotte. Plus, Chauncey Billups averaged 17.5 in 31.6 mpg, while Raymond averaged 17.1 in 38.4. He did averaged more assists than Chauncey, but he did not have Melo taking as much control of the ball as he does.

The final thing is, while Raymond put up nice numbers in New York, his becoming a back-up in Denver should show you the deal that keeps him from elite status. He is a good player, but to those crying for him to be an All-Star last season, he does not appear to be in that caliber. The Knicks were 28-26 with Raymond running the team. I mean, is that elite? Not really.

As a Blazers fan and supporter, I am cool with having Raymond Felton as my PG. But, I still trust Andre Miller much more running my team. Andre is a flat out winner, he is a smarter player and I think the Blazers might have been better off this season with him running the team. I am honestly worried about Raymond's transition to a team that stresses defense such as the Blazers. How can I be sure he will be a step up from a guy like Andre Miller, who seems to provide a winning atmosphere everywhere he goes? He is indeed a better long distance shooter and more athletic, but I have yet to see him be as efficient a floor general.

These are a few of the reasons why I do not believe Raymond is in the "elite" category of PG. Here are PG's I would rather have than Raymond Felton for THIS season, in no particular order:

  • Chris Paul
  • Derrick Rose
  • Deron Williams
  • Rajon Rondo
  • Russell Westbrook
  • Stephen Curry
  • Tony Parker
  • Steve Nash
  • John Wall
  • Jrue Holiday
  • Brandon Jennings (May be a tad naiive, but I see him improving this season)
  • Kyrie Irving
  • Ty Lawson
  • Andre Miller
  • Chauncey Billups

Now, he may end up passing a few of the older guys, but those are 15 names right there. What would make a PG "elite"? Well, I would think the ability to take your team to another level that an average PG otherwise would not be able to take it. I have yet to see this quality from Raymond Felton. There are 30 teams in the NBA, I listed guys from 13 different teams. Raymond is in the top half of the leagues starting PG's, I suppose, though I think guys like Devin Harris, Kyle Lowry, Darren Collison and Mike Conley are fairly close to his ability as well.

Raymond is indeed 27 years old and entering a new scenario. He is taking over for a team that has been a play-off staple for three years. Of course you have the departure of Brandon Roy, but keep in mind that Roy only played 47 games last season, in which the Blazers were 25-22 (were 23-12 without him). They upgraded at back-up guard with Jamal Crawford, but the most major change will definitely be having Raymond replacing Andre Miller.

Raymond will not be counted on to score too much, considering that LaMarcus Aldridge will be the main option, followed by Gerald Wallace and Wesley Matthews. Plus, you have guys like Jamal and Nicolas Batum who can score as well. The key for Raymond will not be putting up huge numbers, but running a winning team. This will be the real test to see if he is an elite level PG. If the Blazers do not make the play-offs, or get significantly worse without suffering injuries, than I think a lot will fall on his shoulders. If they stay the same, I still do not know if you could call him elite. But, if he helps this team contend, than you may be onto something. Right now, I think their are definitely reasons for him not being in the category of the best PG's in the game.

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Beautifully put MikeyV. Good

Beautifully put MikeyV. Good points I was trying to find some examples of his teams success but you beat me to it lol

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Thanks Yeezy

I like him better than Jameer Nelson, though again Nelson is a better shooter and probably close to as efficient as a player. He was definitely part of the reason Charlotte made the play-offs, but they would not have drafted DJ Augustin in 2008 if they felt Raymond Felton was elite. Plus, they had a guy like Boris Diaw who is a great passing forward, probably a part of the reason his assists were lower his last season in Charlotte, along with playing fewer minutes with Augustin being there. Memphis, if you look further into things than just pure raw numbers, but also to how they translate into winning basketball, maybe you can answer some of your own questions.

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+1 Mikey V

Thank you for going into depth for me, but the jury is still out for me on Kyrie as Elite. What makes Curry an Elite guy in many eyes, is his ability to take off on the offensive end. By all means Steph is a liability on defense as is a Jimmer Fredette who brings the same game to the floor.

The Marvin Williams scenario, was brought up to say...hey you don't remember he was considered an Elite guy coming into the league, and what would you say if his stats inflated elsewhere like Felton's. Fluke? He just may indeed need a change of scenery.

Felton was never a good shooter but in his last season at UNC, his 3pt percentage was very misleading .440

No no no, I do not consider Felton's breakout year All-Star Weekend worthy. Who does he get in over? L.A. is the guy who had a case last season vs Love.

I don't expect his scoring numbers to be in the 15ppg range, I say a around 11 a game, but his apg is what should be the thing to standout. I am saying he should be good for 8apg, but I may be underbidding with the company he is keeping in Portland.

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Curry on D - Tangent

Steph is not a liabillity on defense. It's so easy for everyone to label him as such because typically the Warriors as a team didn't believe in too much defense. He is a smart defender with a high defensive IQ and quick hands. He reads passing lanes better than most and fills the gaps to get steals frequently. Other people say Curry isn't strong enough. Billups, the strongest pg in the league tried to post him last night, and got nothing. Steph's quick hands, feet, and ability to position himself appropriately frustrated and bothered him as he does most players in the league. Of course Rose and Westbrook might be able to blow by, but which elite guard in the NBA can't get by another?

Secondly, You weren't selected on the USA team that won in Turkey if you couldn't D up. I remember coach K saying that Curry was an underrated defender, and he only gets that because of the people who say GS doesn't defend. In previous years they didn't defend well as a TEAM i agree, but now that they have Jackson as coach, i'm sure your perception will change throughout the year. He is not an all-nba defender, but he is certainly not a liability.

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I actually like Nelson

I actually like Nelson better, not to mention 2 years back Jameer Nelson was out there giving Felton the business in that playoff series for all 4 games. But maybe Felton has gotten better since then, but I don't remember any recent matchups. And Nelson has been on the decline since then pretty much, so I don't know

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1 thing about the NBA is no

1 thing about the NBA is no one can be stopped if their Elite. I don't care how good a guy is defensively, all you can do is try to slow the person down and minimize how much they contribute.

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http://www.youtube.com/watch?
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MikeyV really finished this

MikeyV really finished this debate, as he was just flat our right about everything. Hugely impressive.

But then I read below, and Curry is elite? Really? No. He has a chance if he further develops his game, but as of now, he simply isn't at the level of the Rose, Paul, Deron, Rondo and Nash's of the world. What gives him a shot is his court vision and unreal shooting ability, by the by, neither of which Felton can quite match.

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MikeyV made some good points

MikeyV made some good points but this goes deeper than numbers in some instances. Has he been elite to this point? No. Is it out of his range to be in the elite catagory? We will see, but I dont believe so.

The FG%, you are dead on....not sure if he will improve much on that, but the bottom line is, he has gone as the success of his team has gone. He has been on some bad teams. Did you take in consideration that incidentally the best season the Bobcats ever had was the same season Felton shot a career high .459 (46%) from the field? How about his career high of 38% from 3 point range that year? Those numbers are very close to your elite list numbers.

Lets go to the Denver trade for a min. I specifically remember that when that trade was completed, they asked George Karl who would be the starting PG....he flat out said Ty....even though Felton had not even arrived in Denver yet. He never even coached the guy. He didnt know how he would work in the system. That should tell you something when concerning a guy who was basically having a breakout season statistically. The fact of that matter is, Raymond was never even given that opportunity because the plan was not to keep him in the first place. I do agree that Lawson is a more efficient player, but from a numbers perspective....Felton probably gives a little bit more in terms of points and assists. Efficiency works for Karl though, so I get that. Billups was moved to make room for Lawson. Felton was just part of the deal. I dont disagree with Karl at all but it wasnt all because Felton wasnt as good as Lawson, its just that he was part of a deal to a team that didnt need him. They never planned on keeping him and they said that last year because they said at this point they know Ray wanted to be somewhere where he could start. Yet and still he didnt do too bad in Denver playing on or off the ball. His point totals dropped but that shouldve been a given. His assists were still on point and not too bad on turnovers. He made 28 out of 61 from 3pt range too.

Its not a good look to have Felton come in and start over Lawson when the latter has been there learning the offense and Billups has been moved out of the way...while the former is only there for a short stay anyway. That to me signifies more of you giving confidence to the man who is going to be your lead guy in the future. To a degree this is why the Clips told Billups he was going to start before he even got to L.A. Not that Chauncey is not worthy or capable, he is, but after how he threatened to be disruptive, they didnt pick him up to sit him behind Mo Williams. Mo Williams is on the way out. Makes no sense.

As far as not remember him being elite in the draft, I dont remember it going down like that. What I remember was Deron Williams leapfrogging CP3 and Felton who were both rated MUCH higher during the season. What happened was an extraordinary tourney run that gave Williams much light. DWill was 3rd in scoring on the team that year, behind Head and Brown. Brown handled the ball a lot. DWill's draft rise was similar in a lot of ways to Westbrook's. Before that, the top PG's were Paul and Felton. If you say 44% from 3pt range for Felton was misleading that year, how misleading? DWill was shooting 36% from 3 (42% overall). Felton, 44% from 3 and 45% overall. Misleading? I dont understand unless you mean the difference between the college and NBA lines. (memphistyga)

The scouts got it right. Williams has been the better player. He was a much better pro than he was collegiate. Same as Westbrook. But this jump didnt come until after the tourney and pre-draft time. Fact of the matter is...Felton and Williams had identical numbers that year with the difference being Felton shot better from the field and had more NBA talent around him, so on paper, Felton looked as if he had the edge. I dont remember mid season anyone saying Williams was a NBA elite level prospect....but then again, I am getting old...lol.

I agree with most of the points you make Mikey, I dont believe its open and shut on Felton, particularly when just going by stats. The thing about NYK winning 28 games with Felton is.....how many games did they win before him? 29. The whole year. Stat was a big part of that, but Feltons contribution should not be disregarded.

I am just giving my perspective. If Portland improves largely in part due to Felton's presence and they move into contender status....I would consider him elite most definitely, regardless of his pts avg, but if he shoots a good percentage, plays solid D and keeps his assist rate at the same level or above. If Portland struggles with him, then we will have our answer for sure. He is more of a Rod Strickland type......elite numbers, but just below elite level as far as winning.

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memphistyga....

that clip you posted....was that to imply that Joe Johnson is elite?

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"If you say 44% from 3pt

"If you say 44% from 3pt range for Felton was misleading that year, how misleading? DWill was shooting 36% from 3 (42% overall). Felton, 44% from 3 and 45% overall. Misleading? I dont understand unless you mean the difference between the college and NBA lines. (memphistyga)"

Yes that is what I was referring to, transition from collegiate to pro.

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"that clip you posted....was

"that clip you posted....was that to imply that Joe Johnson is elite?"

Are you implying he is not?

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Stephen Curry

Do not think he is elite yet, but he could end up being a special player. He is an incredible offensive talent in many ways, probably the best shooting PG after Steve Nash, as far as all things being considered. I think "elite" depends on ones definition. Any given game, one of these guys can sneak up on someone else. It is kind of a consistency of such that gives your team an ability that makes their teammates much better than they would be otherwise.

I think that Chris Paul, Derrick Rose, Deron Williams, Steve Nash, Jason Kidd, Chauncey Billups and Rajon Rondo have fit the bill at one time or another. To me, there are three PG's who are arguably "franchise" type talent, to lead their team to elite status being the times best player or combining with another great talent. They are Chris Paul, Derrick Rose and Deron Williams. John Wall has potential to be one, and Russell Westbrook certainly seems to be doing pretty well.

All of this "he can't be stopped, you can only hope to contain him" is all well and good, but everyone has bad games and gets outplayed. It is about winning your match-up as much as possible, I suppose. Like, Chris Paul may be the best PG in the game, but he will have games where you will say "so and so played better" and have it be true. Does not mean that person is better than Chris Paul on a consistent basis, but it happens. People did a decent job of stopping Derrick Rose in the play-offs, but he is still obviously an elite talent and was the Bulls best player by a long margin.

There seem to be tiers to each position. If "Elite" is the top tier, than I think those three guys I listed as "franchise" type talents, stand out more than others. Than you have "All-Star" level players, who would be the next category down. After that I guess you have "Above Average Starter" than probably "Average Starter", I guess starter just probably refers to how many minutes they would play rather than whether or not they start or come off of the bench. I think Raymond Felton is definitely below those first two tiers, and in between above average and average. Stephen is probably one of the higher above average guys, close to All-Star.

Ultimately though, their are a lot of players who are pretty close to each other as far as impact. Circumstance definitely plays a part. For instance, how will Rondo look without playing with future Hall of Famers consistently? We don't know, but he has a very high level of success with them, thus being ranked highly. His circumstance can be held against him, but all in all, his team wins and he plays a huge part. It is difficult to say that there would be too many PG's doing better than him in his situation. With Felton and Curry, it is really difficult to have the same argument. Even if they obviously are in a different world as far as Rondo shooting the ball, Rondo is much better in other areas. Not to mention, neither Felton or Curry have really been major keys to overly successful teams. I guess I am just trying to make sense of an incredibly broad question without a clearly defined definition to the context. I am confusing myself trying to explain everything, but to the people whose heads I did not go over, think you get my drift.

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mikeyv...

some of the guys you named I cant label them as elite or I could at least argue that Felton at some point and time has made just as significant an impact when taking his team to the next level.

  • Chris Paul (obvious, because he had a garbage team in N.O. and they were a top team in the West once)
  • Derrick Rose (obvious, 62 win season)
  • Deron Williams (playoff contention, great numbers on a great team)
  • Rajon Rondo (without him, I dont know how good Boston would be...they had the big 3, but he was actually their best player for some time now)
  • Russell Westbrook (obvious, look at the rise of the Thunder)
  • Stephen Curry (I havent seen a significant difference with GSW just yet)
  • Tony Parker (great numbers and impact on great teams)
  • Steve Nash (leader on contending teams)
  • John Wall (I believe he will make a difference, but didnt see a different level from Wash in his limited play)
  • Jrue Holiday (will make a difference, but his fortunes may go as PHL goes)
  • Brandon Jennings (you could be on to something here, but he has to improve and the team as well before that statedment becomes factual)
  • Kyrie Irving (you are probably right, we will see after a couple of years)
  • Ty Lawson (hasnt happened yet, Nuggets have to surpass where they were previously, particularly post-season)
  • Andre Miller (I am not sure about this...I stopped watching basketball during Miller's prime, so I dont remember him taking a team to the next level....also, I remember Portland struggling and Roy (before injury) not gelling well with Miller. He has been a guy you can count on day in and day out and incredibly consistant, but next level, I honestly dont remember)
  • Chauncey Billups (no question, took Detroit to another level, when he left, Detroit went down...while Denver resurged.)

Hardly any of those guys on this list were in the same situation as Felton except the ones we dont know much about yet....Wall, Irving, Jennings. The other guys walked into situations with established players....Rondo, Parker, Westbrook, Lawson, Curry and did not have to be the PRIMARY focus. The ones that are left are truly the top level...Paul, Rose, Williams, Billups who have year in and out been MOP/MVP for their respective teams. So we will see how he does this year, but if they have a good year...I say he falls in this list somewhere.

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Memphis

You have to define who you see as elite. It obviously is your perception that some players are elite, who are they? Plus, you have to give a better definition than,

"I don't care how good a guy is defensively, all you can do is try to slow the person down and minimize how much they contribute."

"You can't stop him, you can only hope to contain him" is not something that is easily definable. Who are you saying it about? Who is Raymond Felton better than? Are all of the players I listed in front of him elite as well?

I think consistency also has to be part of the equation. I, for one, feel Joe Johnson is not necessarily elite. He is an All-Star, but I never really fear Johnson and the Hawks as a contender. After a while, you can only blame his teammates so much. He is a tall SG who is quite skilled, but I feel there are more efficient players at his position who are flat out better players. Kobe Bryant, Dwyane Wade and Manu Ginobili come to mind. I think Eric Gordon is close, if not better as well.

It is fairly obnoxious to answer a question with a question if you have made absolutely no opinion one way or the other. Yes, highlights are nice, Joe Johnson can do some amazing things. But, the bottom line is being elite is more than just making some nice moves. It is doing it consistently at an efficient rate. Joe Johnson to me is a level below elite. If he is elite, than I think than you would have to include other players who I do not necessarily find "elite".

If you want to know who I feel are "elite" or "franchise" type players, read this:

http://www.nbadraft.net/forum/drafting-franchise-players

To me, the 10 players I list and the two possibilities are who I would call elite. I could name a few more on the fringe afterwards, but I do not feel there are that many. But, you have to be more specific with who you feel is elite for us to have more of an idea who or what you are talking about to rate Felton accordingly. Right now, you are just throwing words around and using announcer cliches.

@ surve: Think I said I only consider 3 guys elite RIGHT NOW, if you read closely. That list was not of elite players, but guys I felt were better than Felton at this point in time. Was just asking that question so the original poster would maybe give us a more clear definition rather than just throwing "elite" around with players putting up decent numbers. Hope that makes sense.

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Elite-DRose CP3 DWill

Elite-DRose CP3 DWill Rondo

Were Elite-Nash Billups Parker Miller*

Not Elite yet-Westbrook Wall Holiday Jennings Curry

Not Elite-Irving Lawson

Joe Johnson is an Elite player in my book. He may not have the motor of a Kobe or DWade, but he is Elite. I know $100mil contracts aren't giving out to players who aren't deemed worthy as Elite, so that has to speak volumes for something you are saying he is lacking.

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memphistyga

I hear you about the 44%, but do you understand what I mean? 44% from college doesnt translate to 44% in the pros....but Williams shot 38%. When scouts see that, they surely dont believe the guy shooting 38% is going to be better when stepping out another 3 feet. I remember there were a lot of question marks about DWill coming out....shooting was one of them, some scouts didnt think he was a good enough shooter. Athleticism was another. How good he was at playing PG was another, because although he led the team in assists, Dee Brown was the primary ball handler for most of the season....or at least shared duties.

I am just saying all of this in response to the fact that it was mentioned that no one thought Felton was elite...as if someone thought DWill was elite before Illinois great run and pre-draft. Remember, Rondo wasnt considered elite either but Ainge said when they had him in pre-draft, he was dominating guys. DWill was a high risk/high reward guy like Westbrook after him. If the scouts were right, they would have themselves a winner. Felton was a top HS player, but he actually struggled at UNC until his junior season....at which point his potential had turned into performance in the scouts eyes.

The biggest difference between DWill and Felton could be hunger. Felton being highly touted and DWill having to work his way up. Like from I how got the story...Westbrook always had a chip on his shoulder and would not have been offered a scholarship from Howland had Farmar not declared for the draft.

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Joe Johnson

I am not implying that you are wrong in considering him elite, just checking. IMO he is not. Elite to me means a difference maker as the primary focus of a team, be it points, rebounds, assists, blocks....etc. Something a player does well enough to make a difference in winning and losing. Right now, JJ is not in that catagory for me. Just like Chris Bosh was never an elite player in my book either, because he could not make a difference in Toronto. I think we had this same discussion about Vince Carter and his HOF probability. I thought Carter should make it due to his popularity and uniqueness, but I had to concede that Vince was never an elite player....or if he was it was just for 1 season.

Johnson has elite level skills, but if I were to consider him elite, I would have to consider Reke as elite as well. Reke has just as sick handles and puts up just as good or better all around numbers.

MikeyV, I like that word you used...."FEAR". you truly fear an elite player. Thats one way of looking at it. I also look at it like this, could I replace JJ with another non-elite player...say like Reke....and get the same results in ATL. If the answer is yes, then in my book he is not elite. Hence my Bosh statement, nobody feared
Bosh or the Raptors. Even at this stage you have to fear Kobe. To a degree, you still have to fear Garnett. Dirk, LBJ, Dwade, etc. In actuality, if we are talking fear, I would have to fear Zach Randolph right now more than JJ. I love JJ, but I think the closest player the Hawks have to being elite is Josh Smith. Smith has elite level talent but until the Hawks become a contender, no one on that team can be considered elite in my book.

I actually consider prime Ben Wallace an elite player because of his defensive and rebounding impact....because he was able to make a difference and his team was fearsome, if only defensively.

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"I hear you about the 44%,

"I hear you about the 44%, but do you understand what I mean? 44% from college doesnt translate to 44% in the pros"

I'm very aware, but that was misleading in the aspect of thinking he would be a decent 3pt shooter in the pros. Just take a look at the improvement from the first 2 seasons until the 44%

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Also, Kevin Love is not an

Also, Kevin Love is not an elite player either for anyone who may be thinking that. He is an elite rebounder, but they gotta win some freakin games before he can be considered elite. LOL.

As for the $100 mil contracts, once again sometimes its circumstance. In Johnson's case, the Hawks felt they were on the cusp with the team they had so they didnt want to disrupt that. I think it was more of that thinking than the notion that Johnson was elite. You really dont want to lose your best or 2nd best player if you dont have to when you are a playoff team.

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Oh yeah, the comment about

Oh yeah, the comment about people calling for Felton to be an All-Star. Right....there was no room for him, but at the same time, the main squabble was that he was not even being mentioned in the conversation and thats what had some people baffled because as I mention, NYK had started well and when Felton left, they had won just as many games as they had the whole entire season before.

You can actually have All Star level play and still not be an All Star because there are so many spots.

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Felton's UNC 3pt% Fr.

Felton's UNC 3pt%

  • Fr. .358
  • Soph. .313
  • Jr. .440

If that's not misleading to think he would become a better shooter going into the NBA, I don't know what the definition of misleading is.

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Decent opening stat line

DATE
OPP
SCORE
MIN
FGM-FGA
FG%
3PM-3PA
3P%
FTM-FTA
FT%
REB
AST
BLK
STL
PF
TO
PTS

Mon 12/26

W 107-103
35
4-14
.286
0-3
.000
4-6
.667
6
8
0
1
4
3
12

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the 8 assists and 6 rebounds

the 8 assists and 6 rebounds is what will get him into the elite catagory because his scoring will definitely take a dip. If they are a contender and he puts up 14ppg, 8apg, 4rpg, with not so many turnovers then he can be considered elite. Portland is a team who is never at a shortage for scoring. Aldridge, Wallace, Matthews, and Crawford could all average more than Felton.

As for the 3pt shooting, I really dont remember anyone saying he was a great shooter coming out. He was a decent shooter, but his claim to fame was pushing the ball in an uptempo offense and getting it to the scorers. Really, when you think about it, Felton has probably been a better pro than he was a college player, his team success just has not translated.

Like I said, we will see now that he has the keys to a team that is actually pretty good.

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I'm loving the 6 boards more

I'm loving the 6 boards more than anything

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"If they are a contender and

"If they are a contender and he puts up 14ppg, 8apg, 4rpg, with not so many turnovers then he can be considered elite."

Not if he shoot his usual low % from the field. He's not an elite PG by any stretch. He never will be, but he is a serviceable PG who is a decent starter. He doesn't do anything at an elite level except run the break.

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"As for the 3pt shooting, I

"As for the 3pt shooting, I really dont remember anyone saying he was a great shooter coming out. He was a decent shooter, but his claim to fame was pushing the ball in an uptempo offense and getting it to the scorers."

What I am trying to convey seems to go over your head, so I'm going to dead the shooting portion of this thread after this post. You're right, no one said he was a great shooter coming out, but the numbers are misleading .313 to .440 in 1 season is a MAJOR improvement. Yes I also am aware his claim to fame was pushing it to the limit as was Lawson's.

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I think I have my answer

I think I have my answer about why Felton is not and will never be elite. He is more of a role player. The other night I was thinking about what makes a player elite to me. It hit me. Its not necessarily stats and not always winning basketball. Its the ability to dominate. For a player to be called elite he must be able to dominate a game consistently. Lawson is starting to do this. Wall eventually will do this. Felton will not. He is a step below elite. He is very good and plays to win, he just doesnt have any area he can dominate in. Like Rondo. Rondo is not a shooter or scorer, but he can dominate simply with playmaking or defense, sometimes he dominates with just all around game, rebounds, assists, steals.

So thinking again...here are some PG's that I think have potential to be elite based on ability to dominate.

  • Wall - scoring (as he improves his mid-range game) and uptempo offense
  • Holiday - defense and IQ
  • Lowry - all around game
  • Curry - offense (big time scorer who will be a good assist guy)

Some I am not sure about

  • Rubio - good offensive talent (pts and asts) but not sure how good he will be on a really good team.
  • Irving - he is extremely clever with the ball but not sure how good of an assist guy he can be.
  • Jennings - still too subpar in a lot of areas, depends on how his IQ develops.
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If you have watched the Blazers this season

It has given a little window into why Raymond Felton is not an elite PG. Still miss Andre Miller, as do most Blazer fans. Raymond is younger and a better outside shooter, but he is nowhere near Dre as a floor general. Raymond came into camp in pretty bad shape and his season has shown it. Considering that this is a contract year, someone could be getting him on the cheap. Which is usually not how you get an "elite" 7th year PG. Raymond seems to be one of the major factors behind the Blazers struggles of late after a very hot start by the team.

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