Earlier this week, reports came out that Eddy Curry is serious about getting himself back in to game shape. Matt Moore with Pro Basketball Talk quoted a story out of the Miami Herald early this week that said that Curry was working out with famed conditioning coach Tim Grover to get himself ready for a post lockout audition for NBA squads, with the Miami Heat highest on his radar.
The article goes on to say that Curry now weighs about 300 pounds, which is about 50 pounds less than he weighed when he started working out with Grover, but still five pounds over his listed weight (which I'm sure was completely accurate when it got printed...). Curry still wants to get close to 275 for any auditions, which is probably a good idea.
Curry has always been very talented. His ability to score in the post is pretty impressive. If he gets himself in shape, I don't see why the Heat wouldn't bring him in. What's the risk? When Juwan Howard or Jamaal Magloire are giving you regular minutes, why wouldn't you take a chance on a guy who was averaging 20 points per game before Mike D'Antoni showed up and did what he always does, namely refuse to mold his coaching style to the roster he inherits. Curry isn't going to get much more than the league minimum for one year. So you'll have a guy who's been humbled and will be motivated to prove he's worth a larger (no pun intended), long term deal. With a strong coach and team leaders in place, Curry could become a productive center again.
So if he's good enough for the Heat, why wouldn't he be good enough for the San Antonio Spurs? Curry was on his way to becoming a productive member of basketball society in Chicago, but then left for the most toxic environment ever for a young player, the New York Knicks when they were under the rule of Isiah Thomas. Tyson Chandler, who may or may not have just won an NBA championship if you want to pretend this year's Finals happened, says he still talks to Curry often and still thinks he has what it takes to be a productive guy in this league. That's a pretty good vote of confidence.
One of our own, Jason Rogers, said the Spurs should think about targeting Aaron Gray this offseason. Gray is low risk, low reward 7-footer who more that held his own in playoffs against Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum. So here's the question: Do the Spurs pay Aaron Gray something like $2.5 million for Gray (a logical pay raise), know that you're going to get like 8 PPG, 6 RPG and some solid hustle or do you take a cheap gamble on a high risk high reward guy like Curry?
I honestly don't know the answer, part of me thinks you sign Gray for a little bit more and just take the decent production. At the same time, I feel like that's what the Spurs have been doing for the past couple years and it hasn't worked because Tim Duncan isn't the best big man in basketball anymore. So maybe you choose Curry and hope for the best, which could be something like 15 and 8 rebounds per game. Still, it would just feel weird having the Spurs do that. The larger meaning is the Spurs now have to think about these types of moves, especially if they're not looking to make any big moves whenever the lockout ends.
I live in NY so I have followed this guys career very closely. All I can tell you is this! The spurs office should make this guy their #1 priority for next year. This guy has ENORMOUS TALENT!!! I was hoping all last year that we would somehow aquire him. It was (and still is) unbelievable to me that this guy has been so badly undervalued simply because the sycophantic obnoxious NY sports press is so expert at dogging atheletes for things that are beyond their control. Like coaching or injuries. Remember, this is the same press who dogged out Zach Randolph when he was here. Any fool could see that Zach was a great player, but the NY press was able to literally get him run out of town by misidentifying him as the problem. They are notorious front runners and there are two in perticuler who are great writers but really clueless about the game itself. But they delight in their ability to build up or tear down irregardless of the reality of what is actually happening. And this guy got caught up in their circus. Sure, he had some maturity issues. He was, after all, drafted out of HS. But there is no coach in the NBA who would be better suited to bring this guy to his full potential. Pop has never had a reclamation project with the kind of talent this guy has. And this guy has never been with an organization from top to bottom like the spurs. With a leader like Tim who is the ultimate role model and mentor for him. He could ultimately turn out to be Pop's piece de resistance in terms of diamonds in the rough. This guy will become an all-star with the proper coaching and support and mentoring that he could get here. I pray that we make this happen.
I'll take Gray ahead of Curry anyday. The worst part of Curry is his attitude, laziness, and lack of focus on the court. He does have a huge body like Shaq. However, Gray is a better option on any aspects to the Spurs right now.
Both E. Curry and A. Gray played for the Chicago Bulls I think. Curry refused to have medical and physical tests and he was dumped. Despite the absence of an imposing center, Gray did not stay long with the Bulls. Why? Is the ready Spurs to inherit these players and what issues and problems they bring? Is the Spurs that desperate for pf/center? The free agency and rookie ranks are just fertile source of pf/center. K, Fesenko started with the Jazz and gave quality minutes in the absence of their injured Turkish player. He is now a free agent. So are C. Landry, E, Clark and McRoberts. In the rookie ranks why not take a really close look at R. Richards and M. Tisdale. The latter 2 players haven't played in the nba, they are young and coachable. If they have to gamble, gamble wisely with some degree of success. Talking about wing players. The spurs have a lot of them. It is just a matter of gelling with the others. I have nothing against C. Joseph but the spurs could have gambled by drafting a big guy then.
@rtesoro440 I like Landry a lot, but he's a little small and something tells me he's going to go to whoever pays him the most next season. McRoberts is super athletic, but he doesn't do any dirty work. I still think bringing Richards over this year could work. Gray's problems were he was buried behind guys that are better than he is (Noah, Ty Thomas, etc), and I think he'd be a good dirty work guy, but no one listed here or in my column are long term solutions for Los Spurs.
I agree, the team needs to look at all options. Curry never liked running the court or position defense. I believe this is why Chicago let him go. If his attitude has finally changed, why not give him a look, but Gray is finally finding his way in the game and has a good attitude. The Spurs are likely to have to emphasize wing players and PG, with just ok PF and center in the future Kareem and TD type guys are just a rare breed. Everyone but D Howard is second tier. The days when a M Gasol, or Bynum are the elite centers is upon us. These guys couldn't get on the floor 20 yrs ago. So, titles can be won with a good complementary players and skill backcourt guys or one prolific scorer, with a good compliment. Fesenko is another possible, and I still like S Willimas from the D league, if he has grown up. If Cris Johnson could contribute in the playoffs for the Blazers, Williams should be a good bench center.for SA