Tuesday, July 05, 2005


Obviously it is an incredible day to be a Sonics fan. After much consternation and concern the Sonics management stepped up. Here is how it all came down.
• In early February the Sonics made a final offer to Ray Allen that was around $75 million dollars. It was about their third final offer. Lon Babby the agent of Ray Allen thought they were close and asked for a little up to $80 million at which point the Sonice never responded.
• The two sides talked again before the July 1 free agency but nothing came about.
• Therefore, Allen went out on the market. By Saturday Allen told the Sonics he had two offers and possibly a third that was in the range of $80 million.
• The NBA has a rule that allows a team to call another team and find out what they are offering. The rule is in place so that teams don’t have to totally rely on agents and what might be untruths from agents. Teams don’t have to tell, but it customary that they do. Therefore on Sunday the Sonics used their contacts to find out that the offers were legit.
• On Monday they called Lon Babby, Ray Allen’s agent and decided to end the process. Concerned that those two or three teams could actually push the price higher they came with a $80 million offer that could reach $85 with high end incentives and the deal was done.
• Ray Allen agreeded to a 5 year deal. It is really a sign of good management on both sides. The Sonics front office which was often been the victim of great ridicule deserves tremendous credit for how they handled this negotiation. True to their word Allen was their #1 priority and they answered the bell

This signing keeps the Sonics in the elite of the NBA. Allen is one of the truly special players in the NBA and he will carry this team to wins. It gives this team an identity to build around. The deal is a good deal. It allows the Sonics to still get done all of the other things they anticipated in the off-season. They should be able to match whatever offer comes in for Vlady. They should be able to sign a solid back-up to Luke, they should be able to make a choice between Reggie Evans or Jerome James or another front court player that is on the market.
The concern on the deal is how will Allen perform when he is 33 and 34 years old on the backside of this deal. History indisputably says that he will slide and struggle. If anyone can beat Allen would be the one, but I wouldn’t bank on that. Instead, the Sonics have positioned themselves so that as Allen ages, Ridnour, Collison, Lewis and Vlady all move into their prime and should be able to cover his weakening. It is an incredibly bright future for the Sonics.
FIRE UP !!! This is really a great day and a huge relief. The Sonics answered the bell. Allen wanted to stay. He has his team and that is what he wanted. Seattle has a superstar that they can embrace and is worthy of being embraced. The Soncis should be near the top of the West for the next half decade.

I would expect that Nate will be in the fold in the near future. As of 2:00 today the Sonics had not talked with Nate since he returned from his weekend in New York. Portland is putting on the full court press and Paul Allen is at the forefront of that full court press. Allen is telling Nate that he will be his man, that they will together take the Blazers to great heights. I wonder what Mike Holmgren would tell him about how that really plays out?
Bottom line on the Nate end is that the Sonics have done everything to make it a palatable return for Nate. They have offered very good money. They have re-signed the superstar that is at the core of the franchise. When I have talked with Nate he was very concerned about where the franchise was headed, would they step up, did they have a plan. Those questions have been answered now it is time for Nate to carry the Sonics to new heights as a head coach.


Anonymous said...

on the radio tonight locke said roughly ray allen destroyed the spurs and bruce bowen.

wrong. ray allen 32.5 points per game against sacramento. only 21.5 points against the spurs. below his regular season average.

as you sometimes say to callers, get the facts before you make a statement.

Locked on Sports said...

Dude before you try to rip me be prepared. You might want to recall that in Game 1 of the series he scored 8 points in 13 minutes before getting hurt. Therefore, if you take that out and count the next 5 games he handled Bruce Bowen. If you are going to bust me you will have to try again.

mrcoffee said...

Taking the 1st game out, Ray averaged 24.4 per game shooting 44%. That was without their 2nd and 3rd scorers for majority of games.

Let's talk about how Marion, Rip and Anthony faired against Bownen and Spurs' defense.

Anonymous said...

he didnt handle bowen as the previous post notes. ok take the first game out, fair enough. so he hits his regular season averages. that is fine, but that isnt "destroying the spurs and bowen". they largely controlled him.

Anonymous said...

and "dude", in the remaining five games he went 6-14 (ok but a little below average), 6-23 (very bad), 12-20 (nice), 8-19 (ok but a little below average), 11-25 (average).

so that is one strong shooting game, 3 near average, and one very bad. thats doesnt sound like he destroyed the spurs. thats what i rebutted.

i had to amp up the tone to get you to respond. you hadnt to some previous posts where i was trying to help you get more information. if you want comment, maybe answer it more and correct me when i'm a little off abut admit when you are off too.

mrcoffee said...

Anonymous dude,

Did you even watch the series game 3 to game 6? Sonics had no problem scoring against the best defense in the league and not necessariely by Ray scoring tons. Why? Ray was drawing double team (mostly Duncan or Mohammed) when he was off the ball a the perimeter. Results, plenty of open looks inside for Collison, AD and JJ.

Did you see how hard it was for Pistons to score, with Sheed, Rip, Billup and Prince.

anonymous hater said...

anonymous you suck

-A. said...

I am going to change the topic.

I am happy for the sonics and may go to a game or two next year [I am a student money is scarce]. I am not convinced that they are going to pull off as big of a year next year. I think James and Fortson has a lot to do with it, and I am not everyone will be back.

I do hope this signing doesn't tie them up too much in the future.


[I wanted to ask you this, so I am going to throw it in here. I'd really be interested in your response.]

Game 7 NBA finals.

The Pistons seems to have control over Duncan (and the game) through the 3rd quarter. Wallace, McDyess, and Campbell seem to have him out or rhythm, and working hard on defense.

Around 5 minutes left in the 3rd quarter McDyess gets in foul trouble. So is Wallace, and I think Campbell too. Each with 4 or 5 fouls.

Coach Larry Brown goes small. Suddenly Duncan gets in a rhythm. Brown stays small for the whole rest of the quarter and allows Duncan to get confident (which he was not) and get hot [which, again, he was not].

Duncan's hotness carries into the fourth quarter. Spurs win.

To me, it seemed like, Brown lost the game for them. I'd think to contain Duncan, in game 7, risk losing McDyess. Go all out.

I did not read anything remotely close to this in any post game analysis.

What do you think? Did Brown screw up?



Anonymous said...

people use different terms and that created more of difference than there really is.
ray performed to his normal level.

"Sonics had no problem scoring against the best defense in the league."

they averaged 92 points against the spurs. 7 less than their regular season average. while giving up 4 more than their regular season average.

by the way detroit scored 93 against the spurs, two more than the sonics.

those are the facts.
look 'em up.

Anonymous said...

In Popovich's words (I am paraphasing)

Sonics is one team when the ball in Ray Allen's hand, and they are another team when it isnt'.

Anonymous said...

First of all, almost all playoff games slow down unless you are playing Suns or Kings.

Secondly, Sonics were without Shard and Radman. They really couldn't play their game without these two guys knocking down 3's. Of course their scoring would be down cuz instead of 3 pts a basket, they could only get 2 pts.

mrcoffee said...

First of all, all playoff games slow down unless you are playing against Suns or Kings.

Secondly, between Lewis and Radman, they had 0 3 pts basket. Sonics scored 3's with these two guys in stretching the floor. Without them (effective anyway), they had to change their style trying to score inside and middle range. But those are 2 pt baskets.

Anonymous said...

that true. ray is our leader and does a fine job.

but since two shots were taken at me, i decided to add another, maybe the last, we'll see.

i allowed folks to remove the first game where ray was injured in the spirit of listening and being reasonable. but if you step back and look at it again, wasnt ray's injury because bowen was being bowen? and by being close and under him ( he makes a lot of good defensives plays and some where he knows the chance of injury is up and does it anyways) he took ray out of a key game that probably turned the series.

he definitely didnt lock ray down but he did his job. better than others did in the sacramento series. if ray had "destroyed" with 32 points a game average instead of the 25 he got after the first game, the sonics would have won. it didnt happen that way.

Anonymous said...

"First of all, almost all playoff games slow down unless you are playing Suns or Kings.

Secondly, Sonics were without Shard and Radman."

true but dont say they scored at will.

Anonymous said...

what the heck, here is another.
i posted this excerpt at anothe rforum two weeks ago.

"looking at team stat differentials, the sonics series was toughest series for the spurs on FT% differential; second toughest on rebs, steals; second easiest on pts, turnovers, FG% differential, 3pt% differential, eFG% differential; and easiest on blocks, personal fouls incurred, FT made, and PPS differential.

a play or two difference could have made it a 7 game series. without the sonic injuries, the series outcome could have been up for grabs. we won't know if fully healthy lewis and radmanovic could have given the sonics more from the 3 pt game to break thru or if it would have been contained like the rest of it was. they did win two games. from the stats, it looks a lot like the second round series for the spurs. suns and pistons have stronger stat comparisons. but the sonics could still have been as high as the 5th best team overall. and that is fairly close. especially considering injuries and expectations."

mrcoffee said...

Take out the 2 top scorers off a team, any team, see how they would do scoring wise. Especially when they shoot 3's, Geez.

Anonymous said...

yeah the ankle injury slowed ray no doubt. he fought on but without enough help. it is true he really only had one above average for him game against the spurs. only hit 30% of his threes and had 3.5 turnovers a game. but the spurs are the champs so i wasnt surprised. another chance next year. should be a good one.

Anonymous said...

You only can look at stats so much, it was clear Ray Allen had to carry the load with Lewis and Radmanovic out. This allowed the Spurs to alter there gameplan and send double teams, which allowed easy hoops for Collison and others. Bowen can NOT handle Allen by himself, it's very obvious and was stated many times by national analysts. Remember, Bowen could gamble on many occasions because he had 2 7 footers (one on the all defensive team) for help. This is why you can't rely only on statistics.

Vicious said...

If you consider that Bruce is a "shut down" defender and Ray was still able to get his season average.. Then i'd have to say Ray Allen was cleary able to do what he wanted DESPITE missing Lew and Vlad.

As Mr. Coffee said, look at Marion who looked awful against Bowen.

I'll just use your own words..

"ray performed to his normal level."

Yeah, against the best defensive team AND without offensive option 2 and 3 on the team.

Use any adjective you wish, Ray was able to score against Bowen. Something no one else in the league seems to be able to do consistantly.

Anonymous said...

superstars are supposed to step up a level in the playoffs, not just hit their average. ray without rad and lewis was a significant handicap so i am not going to rehash any further. amare did step up huge but even that wasnt enough against the best overall team & coach. so credit to the spurs and respect to all those that tried.

the sum of the two sides of this debate is closer to the full story than just one. i just pointed out the stuff to balance it.

Vicious said...

That was my point..that Ray scored near his average without Lew/Rad.

It was fun watching Amare dunk on Nazir Mohammed though..