Institutional solutions for individual problems; or The problem of Kwame Brown

By Jason Wojciechowski on December 19, 2008 at 9:28 PM

From Freedarko comes this:

So if we all agree that guards, especially the pointy type, are gaining in value, but require more scouting, and big men are drafted on crude factors and no longer rule the game, the age limit makes perfect sense. Put simply, it gives the greatest opportunity to the greatest number of players, not just those born with tremendous height. The argument at Vassar hinged on the Williams/Ellis/Miles troika. The other side claimed that their being drafted showed that the age limit worked for guards. My point was, it shows that it didn't. Had Monta spent a year in college, he would've been a no-brainer lottery pick.

Indulge me in an analogy. If we all agree that pitchers are gaining in value, but require more scouting, and hitters are drafted on pure tools and no longer rule the game, the age limit makes perfect sense.

Ok, nobody in baseball is arguing this. Why? Because it's a problem for individual teams, not for the league. It's not David Stern's concern or Bud Selig's concern if the teams aren't smart enough to recognize that they shouldn't draft Kwame Brown. Nobody ever holds it against GMs when they pass up great players if they get good ones. Let's say Joe Dumars had drafted Chris Bosh instead of Darko Milicic. Would people still bitch about he could have had Carmelo? No, because he got Bosh, and that's all anybody would remember. GMs shouldn't worry about the "we might be passing up the next great player" factor and instead just focus on the "we should get a guy who can actually play the game" issue. And the league as a league needs to keep its nose out.

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