Spurs bring back the band for training caEDDY CURRY WHERE DID HE COME FROM?!?!

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To say Eddy Curry’s inclusion on the Spurs training camp roster was a surprise would be underselling it. Stephen Jackson not talking to the media was a surprise. Tony Parker making fun of one member of the media’s hair (not me, my hair is immaculate) was a surprise. Manu Ginobili yelling really loud when he was recording some clips for what I can only imagine was the jumbotron video was a surprise.

Eddy Curry signing a training camp deal with the Spurs was downright dumbfounding. But when you take a step back and let it simmer, this is just the kind of move the Spurs make.

First, and we’ll get this out of the way quickly, Curry looks pretty fit. He doesn’t look like the out-of-shape Curry that we remember from the New York Knicks. I won’t go as far to say he’s in peak physical condition, but he doesn’t look like he’s in the kind of physical shape where he’ll embarrass himself this month.

Like most of the moves the Spurs make, this is a low-risk deal for them. They bring in Curry, who if nothing else is a legit 7-foot body, and see what he can do. Can he improve the Spurs defensively? Is he a head case? If the Spurs don’t like what they see, they waive him. No big deal.

If dude can play, well, they just brought in a solid sixth big who, once in his career, averaged almost 20 points a game for an entire season. That’s pretty good value for a training camp invite. Oh yeah, and dude has championship experience. (Okay, that’s stretching it a bit.)

Now here’s where I get honest. I don’t think he’s going to make it. I’m not venturing out on a limb very far with that statement, but it is early to make any real definitive statements. Unless the Spurs are intent on trading one of DeJuan Blair / Matt Bonner / Tiago Splitter (remember, he’s getting paid next summer), or waiving Blair, Curry is surplus to requirements.

If the Spurs were going to keep a sixth big on the roster, I would hope it would be one who can help-and-recover on pick-and-rolls (not Curry) and/or does a good job of protecting the rim (1.1 blocks per 36 minutes for his career). Curry doesn’t fulfill either of those requirements. In that sense, Curry doesn’t fit. But when you look at RC Buford and Co.’s track record over the years, the transaction list is filled with a lot of low-risk moves that usually don’t work out, but could have a much larger impact if they did.

In that regard, this move fits the Spurs to a T.

  • Titletown99030507d

    Do you have to go off and disrespect Taigo again in a sarcastic tone? He should get paid especially if he’s better than Diaw, Blair and Bonner the 3 stooges of our front court.

  • Titletown99030507d

    TIAGO!

  • http://48minutesofhell.com Andrew A. McNeill

    Calm down, I wasn’t being sarcastic. Splitter is due for significant raise when his deal is up and I’m not so sure the Spurs will be the ones to bestow it upon him.

  • lvmainman

    Spurs need a 3rd big to play Dwight Howard to avoid Duncan in foul trouble. Just like Willis and Purdue for Shaq. I would have preferred Fesenko or a face up 7’0″ like Garrett Stutz from Wichita St, but Curry might be worth it. Only because that picture of him in a Spurs uniform is the slimmest I can ever remember him looking.

  • http://www.facebook.com/dromjohn John M. Perkins

    Ignoring their current wallets, Omer Asik is a poor man Tiago Splitter. Splitter gets an Asik sized wallet next summer. The wallet might have a Spurs logo on if the money comes from Jackson and Ginobili. 50%/50%.

  • Graham

    Considering he’s playing for proverbial peanuts, I’m absolutely onboard with this as a test run. Interesting to consider him as a potential backup center, if Tiago is traded for a power forward of some kind. Getting him a chance to compete for a roster spot certainly doesn’t hurt.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Craig-Thomas/1541940034 Craig Thomas

    What exactly has Tiago done to earn any more that “the 3 stooges”? He is a 10 and 5 guy who cannot stretch the floor, is injury prone, and plays like he’s 6’8″. I can already see it coming: “but his PER is soooo high,” yeah those are the benefits working in the Spurs system as a semi-mobile big with Manu passing you the ball and Duncan as the focus of the inside defense. As we saw in the playoffs, he is still a liability shooting FT’s and provides little rim protection despite being 6’11”.

    So again I’ll ask, what has Tiago done to make him any better than Diaw who can actually pass, shoot, and be on the floor with Duncan ergo helping the team chemistry? Paying Splitter any more than $9 Mil a year would be a crime.

  • http://www.facebook.com/brandon.burkhart Brandon Burkhart

    I’d rather bring back Nazr Mohammed.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Craig-Thomas/1541940034 Craig Thomas

    Omer Asik actually plays defense is the issue. Asik’s avgs per 36 minutes: 8.0 ppg 13 rebs, 2.5 blks. Tiago’s: 16.2 ppg 9.8 rebs, 1.2 blks.

    Now, which would you rather have if you’re in the Spurs’ position? Sure the extra 8ppg would be nice, but we’re good on the offense. We need a defensive big man who can protect the rim and rebound the ball. Asik is clearly the better choice with 3 extra rpg and 1.3 extra blocks. So, from the Spurs’ perspective, Tiago would actually be a poor man’s Asik due to Asik’s superior defensive skill set.

    Why should we overpay Splitter if there are better bigs on the market? We should definitely NOT pay him anymore than Asik is making in his backloaded contract which is about $6.5mil a year. We need an Asik, not a Splitter.

  • Titletown99030507d

    Yeah we would rather have Tiago’s numbers JA. Imagine if he actually averages 25 minutes or better yeah we would be better off especially if the 3 bombs start clanging the rim and Timmy’s top of the key only shot clangs as well on any given night. I can aafely say if Tiago averages 25 minutes you can take that double double to the bank.

  • Titletown99030507d

    Your dreaming boy. Tiago isnt leaving the Spurs any time soon. Useless Blair or Bonner go first. And Bonner hasnt spaced shit for sometime now and now fat Curry is your answer. LOL! X 1000!

  • Titletown99030507d

    Your full of s*%$. He’s done more than Bonner or Blair. And if would have Diaw’s minutes he sure as hell do more than him too. If they continue with the 3 stooges the same shit will happen this season.And if you think Kawhi is going to put this team on his shoulders good luck with that. He’s good but he’s no Ginobilli in his prime. And if Curry makes the team then maybe we wont have to worry about our front court match ups having to play our two undersized bigs meaning Tiago finally gets to play real minutes
    yippy KI Yay mf!

  • Titletown99030507d

    Good maybe he’ll go to a contender and be efficiently utilized. Can’t wait.

  • http://48minutesofhell.com Andrew A. McNeill

    Tiago’s not going to average 25 minutes a game because he’s a backup center. And the guy he’s backing up is a Hall of Famer. Splitter isn’t quick enough to play power forward in the NBA, that’s all there is to it. He’s a center and unfortunately for him, there’s a better center ahead of him on the depth chart.

  • Titletown99030507d

    Diaw thinks hes a pg. What good is he if doesnt shoot
    We have Tony for that. I want to see Diaw rack up the block shots with those minutes. Yeah thougt so. Watch a game why dont you.

  • Titletown99030507d

    That is a crock of $hit. Then why does Blair a “center” play next to Tim for the last 3 years? Is Tim a PF or Center when Blair steps on the court? And I know Tiago is way better than that useless piece of meat who looks lost on the court most of the time. He can’t even set a good pick or even has the court vision to do so not to mention the BBIQ. And now you have Diaw a “PF” (Blair 2.0) but he’s a good passer big deal get me some blocks. I don’t know how many damn times I have read and heard that these bigs are all interchangable on this team. So what is it? Timmy a Center now or a PF? Oh it depends now with who he is paired with. Bullshit I don’t buy it.

  • Titletown99030507d

    Oh yeah that hall a famer better make his only shot he brings to the table a “top of the key shot” which practically disappeared on him in the OKC series usually in the first half of every game. But he’s Timmy and a hall of famer. Let’s see if does that again in the WCF this season. WE are putting off the inevitable. Let’s accept the fact that we aren’t winning any more Championships with old players. And by the way how many games will he sit in 82 games? You guys are in denial. Let’s move on.

  • Titletown99030507d

    You can keep that boney guy. Splitter brings more to the court. If that wino is smart he’ll utilize Tiago more efficiently by “PLAYING HIM”. You are a joke. I’m glad your not the FO. Watch a few games.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Craig-Thomas/1541940034 Craig Thomas

    What an accomplishment! Tiago’s done more than the most undersized and sometimes most rotund center in the league. Also, he beat out our beloved red rocket who puts on his greatest superpower of disappearing completely in the playoffs. Those sure are some tough guys to be ahead of!!!

    I just want to know why you are riding Tiago’s thang so hard? You realize he’s the 3rd best big man on a mediocre national team right? Like Andrew said, no way Tiago cracks 20+ minutes per game this year especially against strong post teams. The man is like a walking foul waiting to happen not to mention again he plays like he’s undersized when’s he’s 6’11”.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Craig-Thomas/1541940034 Craig Thomas

    What are you talking about? I assume since you read Spurs forums you understand we have an issue at the 4/5 position. We need rebounding, but first and foremost, WE NEED RIM DEFENDERS. Ask yourself, “is Tiago Splitter a rim defender?” From watching the Spurs for past two years, and his 0.5 blocks per game avg, you can easily determine he isn’t a good rim defender. He’s an average rotation defender. Asik is an above average rim defender and great post defense defender. What use is Splitter then? He’s a good pick and roll guy and also a large body. WE DON’T NEED ANYMORE PICK AND ROLL GUYS. We already have more than enough. We need a 7’0″ player who can rebound and block. What don’t you understand about that problem?

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Craig-Thomas/1541940034 Craig Thomas

    lol calling out the best power forward in NBA History because he was guarded probably the best low post defender in the NBA for 3/4’s of the game, what a joke. And when Timmy wasn’t being guarded by Perkins, he was being guarded the NBA’s leading shot blocking and 2nd in line for DPOY. “But why couldn’t Timmy take over?!?!” Sorry if his knees were a little sore from carrying the Spurs to 4 Championships.

    Let’s get to Tiago. Where’s his top of the key shot? Oh wait, I remember, HE DOESN’T HAVE ONE b/c he can only play from about 2 ft from the rim. His post moves are elongated and wimpy, he can’t play post defense against Centers b/c of size or PFs b/c of lack of speed, he is a walking foul waiting to happen, he can’t shoot FT’s, doesn’t rebound particularly well, often has bricks for hands, is injury prone, lacks athleticism, and plays like he’s 6’8″. You need to wake up and smell the coffee b/c you are in denial. Splitter is terrible and his only saving grace is his pick and roll game with Manu. He doesn’t deserve a dime above $5 mil and most Spurs fans would agree with me. Go back to Brazil and worship at your statue of Splitter’s stupid looking smile and let me know when he develops into the next Tim Duncan.

  • Bry

    Splitter is a center. That’s all he can play. I like him, and he is a very solid back up center for the Spurs. When a guy can only play one position (like PG or C) then it really cuts down the team’s flexibility to give him minutes. Tiago cannot defend the vast majority of PFs in the NBA. He simply can’t. He also has no offensive game away from the basket (although he does set good screens and rolls quite well). So, on both ends of the floor he’s unequipped to play PF. If you look at his stats, he’s a center in almost every way (although not a rim protecting one) right down to his free throw percentage. Timmy is also playing Center now. He’s the starting Center, and only plays PF on the rare occasion when Tiago is there along side him. There’s a reason Pop is loathe to do that (essentially playing two 6’11” Centers at the same time). Duncan can still play PF because he has defensive smarts and that shot from 12-15 out. That’s just the way it is. Tim Duncan is a better Center (and a far better PF) than Splitter is right now. Diaw is a better PF than Splitter is right now (primarily because on both ends of the floor Diaw CAN do what is expected of a PF along with being an excellent passer). You can piss and moan all you like; but it’s a simple fact. Until one of those two things changes, Splitter will have to be a back up. Although I do disagree with Andrew on one point. Splitter could end up playing 25 MPG this season because Duncan’s MPG continue to decrease and Pop may end up playing Splitter SLIGHTLY more often with Duncan. If those two things happen, then you could easily see Splitter’s MPG rise up into the mid 20s.

  • Titletown99030507d

    Diaw can’t defend the same power forwards Tiago would be guarding as well. He and Bonner and Blair can’t defend any of those power forwards Tiago would be guarding. You expect me to believe that Diaw can defend Chris Bosh, David Love, Dirk, etc better than Tiago. Man you are dreaming. And I’ll piss on that if I want to.

  • Titletown99030507d

    First off Timmy should quit if his knees are going to be a problem, second he wasn’t making too many of those top of the key shots in the all important WCF series in just about every 1st half of those games. He missed chingos of shots that would have mattered, third he’s quicker than Timmy around the rim on offense and getting to the rim on PNRs. So I don’t care what you say keep watching the games and you’ll see. 82 games buster is a lot for Timmy to take and those old ass knees.

  • Titletown99030507d

    Who said he was going to be the next Tim Duncan Awhole. Comprehend what I’m writing. “I said he’s better than Bonner or Blair and deserves to be on the court longer than those two idiots. But if you want to be bringing Timmy into this. go right ahead lets see if he last 82 games. What he’s going to sit half of those games. They are not winning shit now or ever anymore that front court with Timmy, Blair, and Bonner is a joke and you know it. That wino of a coach thinks he’ll get one for the thumb for Timmy good luck with that. HAHHAHAHHAH!

  • Titletown99030507d

    By the way Timmy’s not the best PF in the league today and that’s what matters. What has he done for me lately? He’s far from it.

  • Titletown99030507d

    the way it stands. Who would you rather want defending the rim instead of Tiago? Diaw, Blair, or Bonner. Answer the freakin question if you know how. Oh and by the way don’t get all hot bothered about Curry. He 6 fouls in 2 minutes waiting to happen. Joker.

  • Titletown99030507d

    Yeah give the raise to Bonner and Blair.

  • STIJL

    You really think Tiago could defend Bosh, Love or Dirk effectively? Bwha ha ha

  • Graham

    Yet you rip the thought of trading Tiago for a proper PF, when of everyone he’d be the most likely to pull something in return? Who are we getting with Diaw/Bonner/Blair? Those guys are highly cost effective players that aren’t exactly going to net you much on the trade block. At least with splitter we can maybe hoodwink someone into thinking he’s the next Roy Hibbert. (Which it seems like you do)

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Craig-Thomas/1541940034 Craig Thomas

    You’re right, he’s not the best PF, but at age 36 with 4 Championship rings, 3 Finals MVP’s, 2 MVP’s and 15 all-star appearances, his basketball career is more decorated than the other top 4 power forwards COMBINED. I don’t think you understand how vital Duncan has been to the Spurs. Probably because you’re not a Spurs fan. You’re just a dopey Tiago Splitter fan.

    I hope you went to the scrimmage last night to see your cherished Tiago get the minutes he deserved… ON THE BENCH!! Tiago’s is a walking house of injuries. He’ll never be anything more than a rotation player. He is not even 1st or 2nd best big man in his own country. He’s garbage. DeJuan “McDouble” Blair got 19 pts last night. Want to know how many Tiago got: 0. That’s b/c he’s garbage and injury prone.

    If you don’t respect Tim Duncan, you don’t respect the Spurs. You’re not a Spurs fan, you’re not even a true basketball fan in my estimation. You need to get the hell out of these forums with your trolling trash. As you leave, I can give you some audio of Stephen A. Smith laughing hysterically saying: “TIAGOOO SPLITTTTERRRR HAHAHAHAHAHA.”

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Craig-Thomas/1541940034 Craig Thomas

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q1LRRjRYCdo

    TIAAGGOOO SPLITTTERRR?!?!?? HAHAHAHA

  • http://twitter.com/nudityJ Nudity J. Fandango

    Awesome lets get a big rim defender that can sit on the bench and not play.

    Unless the guy you bring in is better than Timmy (and he still is a quality quality big) then you are just wasting a spot.

  • DieHardSpur

    @Titletown99030507d:disqus
    Tim Duncan was the best defensive player in the league per minute last year, allowing -6 points per 100 possessions. End of story.

    @facebook-1541940034:disqus
    Tiago Splitter had the second highest field goal percentage off all players last year. He only has a few tricks up his sleeve, but what he does, he does extremely well. End of story.

    It is common knowledge that Timmy has “altered” far more shots that he ha ever blocked. In that same manor, Tiago’s positional defense and size alter just as many without running up the blocks totals. I am going to tell you something that will blow both of your minds – last year, our best post defender in isolation’s was Matt Bonner, only allowing .86 points per possession.

    I will leave you to your madness after one final comment – Hopefully Pop can find a way to allow Timmy and Tiago to play together this year. If he does, you can look for the Spurs to once again be in the top 5-6 defensive teams in the League.

    Sincerely,
    DieHardSpur

  • Graham

    That ignores the fact that you CANT play them both together. One of them is going to get sucked out to the perimeter and get abused on Pick n Rolls by any athletic PF. Timmy can’t defend the 4 very well anymore, and Tiago never could. Both are much better as goalkeepers for the defense or at the very least bodying up on the block. Playing both would be having size for the sake of size, and be counterproductive, on both ends.

    With the rotation as it is now you get full coverage for the 5 at all times, a skill PF who works great in our offense and is passable Defensively in Diaw, and a meaningful deep threat in bonner (at least in the offseason) who can be covered by the center he’s with (usually splitter)

  • Guest

    I went to the spurs scrimmage and curry didnt look that bad! I think he can work out especially if he come cheap! He’ll be good in those times when timmy needs a break, foul trouble and or we need a presence of another big on the floor! I think blair looked really good, physcally and his game! I think spurs need to move blair from center to PF/SF! The one guy that I think surely needs to go is bonner!

  • http://twitter.com/SONofSAN_210 roland carreon

    I went to the spurs scrimmage and curry didnt look that bad! I think he can work out especially if he come cheap! He’ll be good in those times when timmy needs a break, foul trouble and or we need a presence of another big on the floor! I think blair looked really good, physcally and his game! I think spurs need to move blair from center to PF/SF! The one guy that I think surely needs to go is bonner

  • Bry

    Nobody defends those guys well (you just listed off basically all of the All-Star power forwards in the NBA). My point is that Diaw, whether you like it or not, defends them better than Splitter, precisely because Splitter is a Center.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Craig-Thomas/1541940034 Craig Thomas

    Yes, Tiago’s size should always be accounted for. But the same can be said of Eddy Curry? The fact that Bonner led the team in iso post defense is an interesting case. Part of it must be that opposing posts under-estimate Bonner’s defense and then get out of sorts when he bodies them up with his hands extended to the ceiling, daring you to shoot over him.

    I can tell you however one arena in which Bonner is probably last among our big men, defensive rebounding. This, in my opinion, is much more important than iso-post defense. There will only be a handful of times when the opposing team has two posts who are both capable of posting up while playing on the floor with one another (LA, Minnesota, Boston, Dallas, Memphis). Those would be the only times Bonner is required to go one-on-one in the post. However, he always has to rebound and frankly he is terrible at it. Whether he is flopping for an over the back call, getting completely out-muscled underneath the basket, or just loses his man, Bonner cannot box-out to save his life.

    Likewise, Tiago is not very good at getting rebounds. Being 6’11” he should be getting more than 4.3 a game. He doesn’t use his size particularly well, he is weak with the basketball, rarely jumps to get the ball, and is not the best outlet passer. Does this mean he is a wreck defensively, no. However, Tiago is a below average rebounder in my opinion for his size and length. Defense is much more than how you do on defensive iso’s. It also includes rebounding, reading plays, rotating help-side to defend the basket, and being a shot-blocking presence at the rim. I wish Tiago was better at overall defense given his size and ability; however, the fact remains that big guys like Asik, Nikola Pekovic, Perkins, etc are much better defensively than Splitter while being of similar size and wanting similar contracts.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Craig-Thomas/1541940034 Craig Thomas

    My college played Wichita State and I can tell you first hand you do not want him. Despite being 7’0″, he was basically invisible throughout the game. He got into early foul trouble launching at pump fakes, let smaller players abuse him in the post, and ended the game with a meager 8 pts which should have been closer to 4 without easy buckets near the end of the game. Stutz is not NBA ready for any team, much too slow and lacking of any real offense.

  • Bob

    Tiago may not get the rebound but he usually boxes out well enough for another Spur to get it.

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