February 14, 2013

Debating Steven Adams

Filed under: Basketball,Players — Chas @ 7:35 am

I know it is common in just about every city, but I am not a big fan of the cross-media thing. Where a local columnist also does the radio show. (And by that, I mean, my general problem not specific to a particular guy.) Not because his work suffers or because he isn’t particularly good. It bothers me because every column written takes on an undertone of preparing for a topic on the radio show.

I thought about this as a couple weeks ago Joe Starkey did a column on Steven Adams. This week Ron Cook had his own column. Both centered on the issue of whether Steven Adams would return for his sophomore year (or even junior year). And hey, Chris Mueller also did a Steven Adams column — though, he is more radio guy first so I probably cut a little slack on that. For the record, Starkey thinks he will. Cook says, “who cares.”

In both you can almost feel how this is just prelude to using it as a topic on their respective shows.

Okay, I’ll take the bait. I believe Adams plans to come back, but I won’t be surprised if he goes pro based on the rate of his improvement. Sad to say, the Nerlens Noel injury may very well provide a boost to his place in the draft after slipping into projections that say the teens to the twenties.

His numbers may not look impressive, but look at the #9 pick from last year, Andre Drummond. The UConn one-and-done put up less than outstanding numbers and still went lottery.



28.4 10.0 7.6 2.7 .538 .295


23.4 7.2 6.5 2.0 .594 .404

Adams has shown steady improvement. Especially in recent weeks.

“Steve is starting to show what he is really all about,” junior forward Lamar Patterson said. “Everyone has heard of what he can do, but now he’s starting to show it. He’s one of the most talented big men, I think, in the country. That’s a big statement for a freshman, but we’re starting to see the real Steve Adams now.”

Pitt had played without a legitimate low-post scoring threat since DeJuan Blair left for the NBA in 2009. The Panthers were good enough to win a Big East championship and a No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament in 2011, but Dixon wanted to return to the formula that worked so well when Blair, Aaron Gray and Chris Taft manned the middle for him early in his tenure.

“This is the first game we saw the results,” Dixon said. “We’ve been emphasizing it, trying to get better in that area.”

It was the first time Adams reached double figures since scoring 10 Dec. 19 against Delaware State, but this breakthrough game had been in the works. In the past six games, he is 22 for 36 from the field and averaging 9 points per outing.

“He’s more patient,” Patterson said. “He’s not as sporadic as when he first came in. That comes with being a freshman. As long as he keeps improving, we expect him to do big things.”

Adams is not doing much media. Pitt has shielded him. So, there is something of a big question mark regarding the kid and his future. That just fuels the speculation. And really, even if he did more media it wouldn’t change anything. Whatever he says now. Or next month mean nothing until the window to declare for the NBA draft.

If it helps, it seems the New Zealand media believes he’s staying for another year.

Before the start of the US college basketball season, rising Kiwi star Steven Adams was tipped to spend just one year with the Pittsburgh Panthers, before declaring for the NBA draft.

But it now seems almost certain that he will return for at least another year at Pittsburgh, which former NBA player and ESPN college basketball analyst LaPhonso Ellis said would be a smart move.

“One more year of college development will be great for him. What it will help him with is his understanding of the American game, because it’s so different.

“One more year in college will enhance his skill level and put him in a better situation to get drafted next year.”

Ellis has been impressed with Adams’ growth since the start of the season. He believed his game would keep evolving as he became more consistent with his play.

“He’s better now than he was in November. Because of his work ethic, you’ll continue to see him get better. I’m really excited about his future.”

Adams’ old mentor from New Zealand won’t speculate on what Adams will do in April. But he does say this about the free throw shooting.

That is one area letting him down (averaging 37.5 per cent). Is that a confidence or technique issue?

Neither. He damaged his thumb five weeks ago. It’s heavily strapped and giving him restriction. He has to make some adjustments because he’s been shooting them pretty poor.

What about his development in other areas?

Overall, he’s making tremendous progress. As a freshman you can feel like you’re doing nothing right because the coach tries to tear you down and build you back up.

But he’s third in the Big East in field goal percentage (58.3 per cent) and fourth in blocks. And he’s getting better each game.

How is he enjoying life in general?

He’s loving it and he got a 3.8 grade point average in the first semester which was extremely surprising. He’s finding college life, team-mates and the environment good but at the same time challenging.

Hopefully he finds reasons to keep playing at Pitt (*cough* girlfriend *cough*). But, it wouldn’t be a mistake if he looks to the pros.

Adams stays for at least one more year because he needs to, pure and simple. Yes he has great up side potential, I repeat, POTENTIAL. Some of that potential is currently being realized as he gets more minutes and confidence this year. But really, at his current level of play, he would get chewed up and spit out in the meat grinder we call the NBA.

In another year who knows? One thing for sure however, he is getting better game by game.

Comment by Dr. Tom 02.14.13 @ 7:52 am

Adams will have a long career in the NBA. Selfishly Hoping he stays another year. Pitt would be top ten. However if he lived on the streets as a kid and has 17 siblings the NBA money
will be hard to resist. Let’s enjoy the ride this year.

Comment by JR 02.14.13 @ 8:13 am

Look at it another way. If he stays, he will have one season in the (old) Big East and one in the ACC. He will have played against most of the best college teams in the country. That, along with adjusting to the US game and refining his skills can only make him more valuable to the pros.

Comment by Pitt Dad 02.14.13 @ 8:18 am

PITT can not afford to lose Adams after 1 year. The lose of Birch & Gilbert has PITT thin on the front line. JD needs to recruit the BIGS. Say a pray that Adams is a Panther for @ least 3yrs!!! HTP

Comment by DC33 02.14.13 @ 8:39 am

Some project Adams as about a #20 pick. It seems he would get a 2 year contract worth about $2.8M/yr. If he stays and improves to a #7 pick or higher, he should get a 2 year $5.7M/yr deal.

Comment by PghPinstripes 02.14.13 @ 8:56 am

I’m selfishly hoping he stays, but i also think it is in his best interest to do so as well.

Everyone worries about injuries, but only a catastrophic injury would prevent him from being drafted next year, and such an injury is unlikely to happen. Sure, he may get hurt at some point, but that doesn’t prevent guys from getting to the NBA very often.

Nerlens Noel may be hurt but if he goes to the draft, I will bet all tha I have he is drafted in the first round, still a millionaire.

For Adams, if he goes this year, his a mid to late 1st round pick. If he stays and improves (very likely) he’s a lottery pick and he makes more his first NBA year than he would in his first 3 NBA years were he to go this year and be drafted late in the first round. Worst case, he stays, gets hurts and drops in the first round a bit but still drafted, still a millionaire and better prepared for the NBA.

Comment by PantherP 02.14.13 @ 9:13 am

Adams should stay.

The factors he should be considering (Green = GO! Yellow = Maybe, Red = Stay):

*Draft Projection
Green = Lottery
Yellow = 1st round
Red = 2nd round

Green = Immediate $$ need
Yellow = NBA dream, shaky college situation
Red = Good college situation, immediate cash not an issue


Green = able to compete at NBA level immediately.
Yellow = game not quite there but able to handle NBA life style
Red = physically not ready and not quite mature enough

*Risk – Two kinds of risk 1) performance risk and 2) injury risk.
Green = consensus improvement projections are too high and/or injury risk is high (think Greg Oden and DeJuan Blair)
Yellow improvement projections are reasonable and no abnormal injury risk
Red = low expectations and low injury risk

Adams Scores:

Yellow/Red – No one has him as a lottery pick, most have him in the late first round.

Red – He comes from a bad situation in New Zealand, so his expectations are low. By all accounts, his family is not pressuring him to “bring home the bacon”. His college situation is good, and will be getting better if his GF is coming.

Red – He would get his ass beat up in the NBA right now and he could really use another year to adjust to the US and mature a little more. He needs some structure.

Yellow – The improvement expectations are high, but he has been meeting them so far. I think he will continue to improve steadily and then it’ll click and he’ll dominate. If that click happens this season, then maybe I would adjust this to Green. He is a big tough kid, no abnormal injury risk.

So unless something materially changes (i.e. his projection or performance) it is a no brainer for him to stay.

See, it is all so simple when you break it down scientifically!

Comment by boubacar aw 02.14.13 @ 9:23 am

If Steve is offered a high spot in this years NBA draft he should go and take the money. Admittedly I don’t watch the NBA and am not an NBA expert. I don’t believe Steve is NBA material just yet but if he has a chance to go to the next level he should go and take the. $$. He needs to look out for his best interests. Pitt will survive without a 7′ center.

College sports cow down to media for the $$. When Pitt enters the ACC expect to see Thursday night ges at Heinz field. Forget about the kids who have class on Friday, it’s about TV revenue.

Steve needs to look out for Steve.

Comment by MariettaMike 02.14.13 @ 9:23 am

One only has to look at someone like Chris Taft, who was much better than Kiwi Steve as a Freshman and still wasn’t ready for the NBA. And where is Chris now, who knows. I do know he didn’t have a very long NBA career.

On the other hand if Kiwi Steve stays and develops his game like Aaron Gray did, Steve will be a lottery pick and have a very long and rewarding NBA career. And make much more money in the long run. 😉

Hope he’s smart enough to not look at the quick buck but the long view of things.

Comment by EMel 02.14.13 @ 9:47 am

Stop with the “he needs another year” stuff. If he is going to be a first round pick, he doesn’t NEED another year. The NBA draft is not like it was 20 years ago. You strike when the iron is hot. If he were considered a first round pick and came back, it is actually more likely that another year in college will hurt his stock. And this nonsense about another year of development in college helping his game is just that, nonsense. Do you really think practicing with his team mates and the strength coach all off season is better for his development than playing hoops full time with an NBA training staff?

The fact is, we all HOPE he stays. But to suggest that another year of college hoops is better for him and his draft status is almost certainly wrong. Just ask Jared Sullinger, Perry Jones III and just about any other highly ranked player who came back only to see his stock drop.

Comment by Pete in MD 02.14.13 @ 9:55 am

@MariettaMike. Regarding the Thursday night games at Heinz.

They will be much fewer and further between than when we were in the BE.

Yes, ACC does play Thursday night games, but they have never stuck a member as the “Thursday Night” team. They have rotated them very fairly.

So, with 14 teams, and with a fair rotation, that will not happen as often as it did in the BE.


Comment by Dan 02.14.13 @ 10:06 am

@Dan — I beg to disagree with you on Thursday night games in ACC. I have season tickets to GA Tech games and they have had a Thursday night game on their schedule every year since I’ve been a season ticket holder which is over 15 years. I hate Thursday night games at Tech because Friday’s came too early for work. Now I’m retired but I still believe, like the B1G conference, college football games should be played on Saturdays.

Comment by MariettaMike 02.14.13 @ 10:27 am

A little off topic, but worth noting:

Looks as though the top brass @ Big East Team Fan Shop read this blog..

As of today, the ‘Pittsburgh panthers ACC Arch T-Shirt – Navy Blue’ has been wiped clean from the site.
Entering the product ID: 1111700, you’ll find “IMAGE NOT AVAILABLE” & “ON HOLD.”

Take a look for yourself. LMAO!

link to

Comment by Neil 02.14.13 @ 10:28 am

Unlike Ron Cook, I don’t think it’s in Steve Adams best interest to go early. First and foremost, if he’s enjoying college life, then make the most of it. You will neve get that opportunity again. Being in school does make a difference, it refines you and despite what the skeptics say it helps educate you, teaches you how to present yourself and many other things. I belive most athletes are the better for have been in school. Getting paid one or two years soomer doesn’t really make that much of a difference. When any of us look back at our college years we relaize how important that short time was in our lives for our development. My advice to Steve Adams, enjoy your time in school, refine your skills, because it will never be quite the same in the pros. Besides you will command more money in few years as game develops.

Comment by Justinian 02.14.13 @ 11:03 am

EMel is absolutely right. As for Taft, I hope for the best – but the last I saw of him (close to 2 years ago i think) he was jumping on a PAT bus in Oakland after a JD youth summer camp visit & was at the JCC for a cup of coffee (where I believe he was found to be unreliable and ties were cut). We all know that Adams could benefit from additional college run, but if his development accelerates & the 10 make a nice March run who could begrudge him the opportunity that guaranteed money could provide? Given JD’s relationship w his family, we should all expect him to advise Steve to jump for the cash if he is projected in the top half of the first round right?

Comment by ptbreezeb 02.14.13 @ 11:05 am

Yeah, if I thought Adams was anywhere near his ceiling I’d say go.

I am in full support of athletes going out and getting as much money as they can as soon as they can. Everyone is profiting off them, this is their trade so of course go get your money.

In Adams’ case though he has not hit his ceiling. He is developing in to a very likely lottery pick, and under the rookie pay scales for the NBA lottery guys do far better as a rule (its hardly up to the team that drafts him).

If he stays he also gets more notoriety. If he leaves this year, it will be years before anyone hears of him again, until he actually gets some minutes. If he stays, and takes us to a Final Four, his notoriety sky rockets and in addition to being a lottery pick he’s in a much better position for endorsement deals. Sure, maybe no Nike but something far better than he gets if he is draft pick 14-30, with no name recognition and no chance of making a name for himself until at least 3 or 4 more years in the pros.

Comment by PantherP 02.14.13 @ 11:13 am

link to

This is a table of the rookie pay scale. Top 5 guys make more in their first year than the picks 20-30 do over three years.

Comment by PantherP 02.14.13 @ 11:22 am

Adams needs to develop an offensive move to take the ball to the basket. Currently, he has none.

His skill level is not even close to what it needs to be in order to compensate for the fact that he looks pretty awkward while trying to get position around the basket and is not the best jumper in the world.

Doing the math, the million or two or three he would make should he elect to enter the draft this year could easily be made up by improving his game enough to become a mid to high first round pick next year.

The decision to stay another year is not that hard, unless of course you really don’t think you can get much better.

Comment by PittofDreams 02.14.13 @ 11:37 am

The smart money rides the wave of Pitt’s move to the ACC, another year of development for him and lots more $$$$$ up front when he’s a known commodity rather than a project at the next level.
In finance, termed “appreciated assets”.

Patience is a vertue, then,,,,,SHOW ME THE MONEY!!!

Comment by Dr. Tom 02.14.13 @ 11:38 am

Regarding Chryst’s choice for Defensive Coordinator or lack thereof, the best rumor I’ve heard to date is that Chryst is likely to go through Spring Ball with House as DC.

If he doesn’t like what he sees, Chryst would then hire someone from the outside.

It’s well known that Chryst likes to roll the dice when it comes to playcalling.

That’s a whole other matter when it comes to hiring a guy to head up your defense when you’re coming off a six win season.

Here’s hoping Chryst is about to pull a rabbit out of his hat and it ain’t someone on the current staff.

Comment by PittofDreams 02.14.13 @ 11:46 am

If Adams were to come back and be a top 5 pick, then he should come back. I am simply suggesting to you that it isn’t all that likely that coming back would solidify that, and then he just missed a year of earning. There is also a lot of risk in coming back. Obviously injuries are a concern, but another year of marginal improvement will not seriously improve his stock, and the fact is it sometimes hurts it.

A current example would be someone like the Plumlee kid at Duke. If he had come out after his freshman year, the draftnicks had him as a certain lottery pick. Now, not so much. No one in their right mind would say that he is not a better player than he was as a freshman, right or wrong, people have just seen him so much his ceiling has lowered. I believe this to be possible for Adams.

The counter to that argument is someone in my own backyard, MD’s Alex Len. He came back and has played his way into the discussion for #1 overall pick. The difference is no one had him as a first rounder last year, so there was less risk of hurting his stock.

My point, again, is that another year in college does not automatically mean an increase in your draft stock, even if you improve as a player. Adams needs to consider this if he is in fact a likely first round pick

Comment by Pete in MD 02.14.13 @ 11:47 am

Glad to see some validation for what I have suspected to be his foul shooting problem for the last month.I still can’t understand why the media hasn’t noticed his injury.It isn’t just a freethrow issue either.Even though he is progressing nicely I maintain it is hurting his rebounding and overall shootig as well.If Steven Adams stays he will be next years 1st pick but I think he will be a lottery pick this year after he gets us deep in March.After theOrange lost last night Pitt has an excellent chance to win the BE.If over the next 3 weeks he improves half as much as he has over the last 3 Pitt will far exceed any preseason expectations and could possibly get to hallowed ground.I said it in November and it is still true today.This team will go as far as Adams will take it.If he leaves I still think we will be a very good team next year.If he returns we could have it all.

Comment by spiritofsection22 02.14.13 @ 11:57 am

The Nba scouts do not but much faith is statistics. They realize the team and system the player is with in college will have an impact on those.
Although Adams has some conditioning work ahead the only player I have seen who at 18 had an NBA body was LeBaron. As for all the centers in college in the country I agree with the concensus of the scouts Adams has the best footwork for a man his size and the highest ceiling.
If he went out after his freshman year he would be a lottery pick.
After 2 years in the NBA he will be a legitimate star.

Comment by pittisit 02.14.13 @ 11:58 am

I agree with Boubacar’s thoughtful analysis. Trying to be unbiased because all Pitt Fans want him to stay four years (FU Ron Cook), I think it is in his best interest to stay at least another year. Unless of course he miraculously becomes dominant and takes us to the promised land.

It is obvious that he is much better compared to the confused looking player he was early this year. He still has a long way to go to become a competitive center at the NBA level and can get there for sure under Jamie’s tutelage.

He will probably be a lottery pick probably next year on his current pace of development. Another year in the weight room and improving his skill set will make him a starter in the NBA much sooner.

It is also impossible to put a price tag on the college experience. Most of us look back fondly on the four years that helped to transform us from children to adults. Once it’s over you are on your own facing life’s challenges.

I just hope that Steve has good advisers and support when he does make the transition, so he invests his money wisely to secure his future. A college education, and financial literacy skills, will take him a long way.

We all know about the athletes that squander their millions, get ripped off by their so called friends and advisers and end up bankrupt in a short period of time.

Let’s hope Pitt and his college experience prepares him for what is ahead.

So far, he seems like a genuine, level headed, team player, a credit to his country and our University. He has overcome long odds, and deserves great success. I hope he stays long enough to become a Pitt legend and then becomes a star in the NBA.

Comment by gc 02.14.13 @ 12:08 pm

@MariettaMike. Point taken. I do believe that the schools aren’t really “forced” to take them though. Some teams, more than others, may jump on those games to get the tv money. So, if Stevie P. wants the cash, I guess we could be in as many.

I read or heard, that they kind of have a “feeler” conversation with all of the a.d.’s, and they’ve never really had to force anyone.

But, you are correct, if S.P.’s mindset is to jump on them, then, we will.

As for the games……….

I have two points of view, and they are both very selfish!!!! LOL

I do not like games on Thursday night for Pitt, with your above mentioned concerns, and, overall, I just feel college football is for Saturdays.

However, when it’s not Pitt, I do enjoy watching other teams play on Thursday nights and glad to have games on!!! LOL

Comment by Dan 02.14.13 @ 12:18 pm

lots of good pts raised on here but its all a bit premature. Can’t really debate the decision to stay or go until after Pitt wins the national championship game (or not)this season. I think the NBA deadline to declare is near the end of April of each yr. At that time, Adams will make that decision with his family and Jamie, based on his performance during the regular season and NCAA tournament.

Until that time, lets just sit back and enjoy his game by game improvement. Like Emel, PantherP & others on here, I would love to see him come back next yr, develop his inside offensive game, and secure that lottery pick status, after leading Pitt to that coveted Final Four. HTP

Comment by Bossdaws 02.14.13 @ 12:48 pm

To be fair to Taft, it was subsequently reported that he entered the NBA draft specifically because he had been told that his back would not hold up for more than a couple more years of competitive basketball. In other words, he felt he had to take the risk of jumping to the NBA because another year of college would further shorten his pro career (at best), or even derail it completely if his back gave out while still in college. I don’t know if he made the right decision, but I think it was more rational that most of us believed at the time.

Comment by Pantherman13 02.14.13 @ 1:16 pm

If he plays this well with a bad thumb what can he do when it is healthy? How come nobody in the media noticed?Don’t they get paid to know this stuff?I can’t imagine how hard it would be to play at this level with such an injury.A few weeks ago there were posts on this site demeaning Adams for not being able to sink fouls and pounding Dixon for the same. Add 25% increase to Adams’ freethrow shooting and Pitt would be shooting 70% as a team. So much for the critics.

Comment by spiritofsection22 02.14.13 @ 1:24 pm

Is there a Joe C in the house?

Comment by HLandPitt 02.14.13 @ 1:27 pm

Comment by classof 69 02.14.13 @ 1:42 pm

we can speculate all we want but the truth is he probably doesn’t even know what he will end up doing. Yes, he is probably thinking right now that he wil be returning, but as we all unfortunately found out back in December — right now doesn’t count!

Comment by wbb 02.14.13 @ 1:44 pm

If Adams leaves Zanna will have to play center and although we have no backup on the horizon,I still think we could have a pretty good team next year.Both freshman recruits should be able to contribute and we would have a real good group of seniors.I think we would be able to at least make the NCAA and maybe even win a game or two.We desperately need depth at the 5 and I am sure Dixon is busy trying to find someone in either the junior college ranks or eligible transfer group.

Comment by spiritofsection22 02.14.13 @ 2:01 pm

Steve Adams will do better and ultimately make more money if stays in school and develops his skills. The more skilled he becomes the higher he will go in the draft. The top picks make the big money. If you go early, before you develop the other parts of your game, not only do you take the risk of not making it in the NBA, you will be making a lot less every year. He should stay at 2 more years and maximize his talents so he can command more money.

Comment by Justinian 02.14.13 @ 2:04 pm

@wbb is spot on. Not even worth discussing. Way too many games left.

Comment by Omar 02.14.13 @ 2:11 pm

@class of 69, that’s effin’ brutal!!!! LOL

Comment by Dan 02.14.13 @ 2:39 pm

wbb and omar, it’s never to early to Blather or beat a dead horse.

We debated, if he would come, how good he would be, now it’s when he should leave. That’s what we do.

Comment by gc 02.14.13 @ 2:55 pm

@Dan & @MariettaMike, The old Big East has basically become the new ACC so what ever time spots the old Big East FB games on ESPN netowrks the new ACC is probably going to fill.

That said, I’m ok with one game on a Thursday night if early in the season like in Sept..Normally there is ton of stuff going on during Sept on Saturday’s so nice to free up an extra weekend and gives me a reason to take Friday off and have a long weekend.

However the Wednesday and Friday games are horrible both at home and on the road…hopefully the ACC will stay away from those games but fearing ESPN will overrule.

As far as Adams staying or going , I’m not a Ron Cook fan either but he’s got this one right. I’m not even going to waste time discussing it. It’s a win win for Pitt fans.

Comment by milo bloom 02.14.13 @ 2:58 pm

Whoever created that ad is about to experience some serious sensitivity training, assuming they are still employed.

Comment by longsufferingpittfan 02.14.13 @ 2:59 pm

Love LOVE that Illinois ad!

Comment by Chuck Morris 02.14.13 @ 3:06 pm

If Adams is lottery pick go this year. otherwise,given his potential, he will be advised to stay a year because he clearly needs it for many reasons.
Don’t underestimate the fact he is an international student so he as a different point of view, and frame of reference, than a kid who grew up in BBall here in the US (not that either is better or worse, just different).

Finally, isn’t his girlfriend coming to Pitt next year for swimming or something?

as for the link to the ad above… wow… stupid + insensitivity-to-victims = fired…

Comment by Pittscript 02.14.13 @ 3:09 pm

One thing we are overlooking Adams is already more skilled offensively than he has shown in the Pitt system. Unlike most 7’ft NBA centers he is a dangerous shooter from 15 to 20ft. His is 3 for 4 on jump shots from that distance in college.

For some reason, either discouraged by the coaching staff or lacking confidence (I find this hard to believe because at Addidas/N.D. Prep his ability to face the basket and score was what pumped up his ranking).
I wish Pitt would encourage him to take the 15ft jumper it would add an extra dimension to an offense that often has trouble scoring.
Pitt does have a go to man he just happens to be 7′. His hand injury may make him less confident. He can be a 70% foul shooter without all the tape – that is his game. He is more awkward with the hook shoots.

Comment by pittisit 02.14.13 @ 3:16 pm

if he has a shot he should go! even Theebet made more $$ in the pros then most of us will make in a lifetime.
u go! Nerlens Noel anyone? before him I think Pervious Ellison at Louieville blew out a knee & was never the same.
Even Mark Blount made $$ once he got it together.

Comment by Punxy Panther 02.14.13 @ 3:17 pm

@milobloom. Agreed. Even as a college football junkie, have never got used to Wed or Fri. Matchups are usually horrible. Too much stuff to do.

They’ve been doing Thurs. so long, and usually half decent match ups, I look forward to them, when not Pitt.

Comment by Dan 02.14.13 @ 3:21 pm

gc, I stand corrected!

Comment by wbb 02.14.13 @ 3:35 pm

There is a huge difference between being a lottery pick, and someone drafted later in the 1st round.

ex. #5 pick 2012. 3yr contract totals about 10M.
#20 pick 2012. 3yr contract totals about 3.5M.

That’s a big difference, at least to me.

So, to say, if he’s a 1st round pick, just go, is incredibly short-sighted.

Are there risks to coming back, sure, there’s risks with everything.

There are also upside risks.

If he’s guaranteed to be a lottery pick, ya, go.

If they’re telling him, ya, somewhere in the 1st round, then he has a lot to think about.

His stock could fall, it could also rise.

link to

Comment by Dan 02.14.13 @ 3:37 pm

Milo, Dan, All I know that we have played at UConn no less than 3 weeknight games, and lost all 3 (under 3 different coaches) even though we were favored in each. On the other hand, UConn came to Heinz only once on a weeknight, and Tino passed for 419 yards .. under Graham! So what does that tell you?

Comment by wbb 02.14.13 @ 3:39 pm

***above link, at bottom of post, is 2012 NBA contracts for 1st rounders.***

Comment by Dan 02.14.13 @ 3:40 pm

Steve Adams sister Valerie won New Zealand sportswoman of the year last night for her Gold medal performance at the London Olympics in Woman’s shot put. So clearly there is something in the genes. She is 6’5″ and 250 lbs so little brother still has some potential to add some size. In NZ the expectation is another year at Pitt to learn the US game. It may however all come down to his performances at Tournament

Comment by Marcus50 02.14.13 @ 3:49 pm

@wbb..Well at least we won’t have to worry about that anymore! Don’t thimk we’ll see UConn anytime soon in Football again.
My prediction is that either the NC or Virgina game will be a Thursday nighter.

Comment by milo bloom 02.14.13 @ 4:07 pm

“That’s what we do” What a pity. Why waste time and space jabbering about something which is so obviously SPECULATION? Of course, it is fun,even inspirationsl tp watch Mr. Adams improve weekly. I really would like to see him stay at Pitt, maintain his GPA and become a polished hoopster. However, none of us speculators and not even Steve should venture a guess as to his future. Work hard, lad learn from your coaches and the future will take care of itself!!! Rev.George from Columbus which has a track record of sending collegians to the pros MUCH TOO EARLY!!

Comment by Rev. George Mehaffey 02.14.13 @ 4:12 pm


Comment by Dr. Tom 02.14.13 @ 4:14 pm

Dan, Nice to be anywhere on that list, but the top 5 sets you up for life if managed reasonably well.

Change of topic, but if we win the next two, we will have a regular season that no one predicted. Especially after the failure of last year, again which no one predicted. Although highly unlikely, speculate on the Pitt program if Adams were to stay all four years.

Comment by gc 02.14.13 @ 5:08 pm

I watch nba games every week and i know a good amount about individual players and teams. Id be willing to bet i know more about it than most on here. I dont say that to be offensive or to brag i just want to throw my opinion out there. If adams were to declare for the nba hed be picked in the first round foe sure. probably in the upper teens or low 20’s at the latest. He would get every chance to play and hed be making bank. With that said if he were to stay and continue the progress that hes been having for the past few months, he will have a chance to be the number 1 pick and hed be a safe bet for the lottery. I didnt say he would be the number 1 pick, but hed certainly have a chance

Comment by pk 02.14.13 @ 5:09 pm

As a high school basketball coach, I sent one player to UVA another to Maryland and many to small calleges to play and learn. To each I said the following “go to college, enjoy it, when you look back it will be the greatest and most exciting time of your life, do your best, study hard, but have fun…it is the last bastion of your childhood and you will always look back on it fondly”.

I would give the same speech to Steve Adams…and yes, I know there are millions of $$ awaiting him.

It’s not selfish…it’s the truth. I believe he will stay for at least 3 years. We’ll see

I believe going to college is important, not just for learning, but to learn to interact with all other kinds of people. Those skills, the interaction skills, and your adjustment to them, will make or break you in life.

Comment by Dan 72 02.14.13 @ 5:13 pm

Hoping he stays, think he’ll stay. If not, nothing but the best for him, glad we’ve had him.

Hail to PITT!

Comment by Digdug 02.14.13 @ 5:25 pm

The first time I saw Aaron Grey play I thought he was the biggest stooge the game of basketball had ever seen. Dixon developed him into an NBA player who has made a nice journeyman career for himself. Adams would be wise to stay another year

Comment by Dan35 02.14.13 @ 5:43 pm

If Adams were to stay for 4 years Pitt would win at least 2 national championships and he would cost himself a gazillion in lost earnings.

Comment by spiritofsection22 02.14.13 @ 5:50 pm

The true worth of Adams is in the measurements. If he is legitimately a seven-footer — I’ve seen 6’10 a few times — he will have a real shot at the lottery after next season. If his measurements come in lower, is value is marginalized.

The improvement in physique Dixon players make from year one to two is often dramatic. Given the impressive athletic ability the Pitt trainers have to work with, Adams could be physically dominant next season.

He should only go this year if he’s a lottery pick.

Comment by Denny 02.14.13 @ 6:07 pm

ESPN (Insider Subs) doesn’t think Adams is even worthy of Top 25 freshman

link to

Comment by tedsptman 02.14.13 @ 6:13 pm

Adams longterm future exceeds every player on the list.He is a raw diamond playing with a serious injury to his thumb.When he heals and matures he will be the greatest basketball player to ever play at Pitt by a considerable margin.In 40 years of watching Pitt hoops I have never seen a player with his potential.Patrick Ewing was the only player I can recall that even came close to his potential at age 19.We haven’t seen anything yet.This young man is the real deal.

Comment by spiritofsection22 02.14.13 @ 6:39 pm

You spotted that wrap early.

Comment by xfmrman 02.14.13 @ 6:57 pm


Comment by xfmrman 02.14.13 @ 7:41 pm

Denny, I agree he should only go if he is a lottery pick.If he keeps improving this fast he will be.7’agile,strong, coordinated,smart.He has hands that make a basketball look like a volleyball and can jump like roo.He is a lottery pick by seasons end.The amazing part is the social adjustment factor.He might stay on that basis which could make next year crazy around here.I am almost afraid to dream like that!

Comment by spiritofsection22 02.14.13 @ 8:02 pm

With the chance at a (1st round) guaranteed contract and a nice signing bonus, Adams should go.
If it appears that is not likely, he should stay.

Comment by xfmrman 02.14.13 @ 8:14 pm

wow (respect) about his sister above… someone should send tape to Chryst and the phantom DC… they are weak at linebacker over the next few years…

That could keep Adams here.

Comment by Pittscript 02.14.13 @ 8:39 pm


Comment by Pittscript 02.14.13 @ 8:40 pm

All I can say, in answer to the comments, is that Tim Duncan played all four years in college despite all the speculation about his going pro. He stayed in school, and when he went to the NBA he came in with developed game. Since then he has played 15 years in the NBA with the Spurs, and they have won 4 NBA Championships. He did ok in my book and he didn’t lose a Bizillion bucks by staying at Wake Forest.

Comment by Justinian 02.14.13 @ 8:50 pm

link to

Steve’s big sister photo. If he can develop the same strength attributes lookout NBA.

Comment by Marcus50 02.14.13 @ 9:11 pm

As Spiritofsection22 and I have been saying for weeks, Kiwi Steve is playing with a thumb injury.

Don’t know how many have played hoops on this blog, but a thumb injury severely limits just about EVERYTHING IN BASKETBALL. And a thumb injury only heals by NOT playing, as it is constantly being hit, while catching a pass, rebounding, deflecting passes, shooting, blocking shots, etc., etc.. Basically everything, even the aftergame handshake would irritate it.

With that in mind imo, Kiwi Steve’s stats would be at least 25-33% better without the injured thumb.

And being a lottery pick means a lot longer guaranteed career in the NBA for a mid to late 1rst rounder. As one only needs to look on how many from just a few years ago are entirely OUT of the League. They don’t give up so quickly on lottery picks, so I disagree most assuredly with PeteinMd. Whoever he is. :-)

Comment by EMel 02.15.13 @ 2:43 am

Agree Justinian

Tim Duncan staying in school all 4 years trumps any names that the other side can come up. For he is a certain NBA Hall of Famer. And he has his college degree. Mr. Duncan being from another country like Kiwi Steve saw the value of school and developing his game, rather…..

than the quick buck.

Who knows what would have become of Tim Duncan had he came OUT after his freshmen or sophomore year. Most likely he would have been a bust, as he wasn’t physically mature enough, nor was his game at that time.

The NBA will always want someone in the 1rst round who’s 7 foot tall with the athleticism of Kiwi Steve. They will always be there.

Comment by EMel 02.15.13 @ 2:51 am

ESPN (Insider Subs) doesn’t think Adams is even worthy of Top 25 freshman

link to
Comment by tedsptman 02.14.13 @ 6:13 pm

Are we sure Kiwi Steve isn’t on here, cause there’s ONLY 3 players listed.

And you are an unknown poster, lol

Comment by EMel 02.15.13 @ 2:58 am

Tim Duncan is the exception. First of all,he almost certainly would’ve gone 1-3 after his junior year (probably sophomore too but we will ignore that for now) so an argument can be made that he left millions on the table, not to mention the extraordinary risk of getting injured he took. It worked out fine for him, and if Adams or anyone else wants to stay in school, more power to them. However, it still is not the best decision. It’s been 15 years since Duncan was drafted and things have changed a lot. Players are drafted more on their perceived ceilings than on actual results. That’s why players’ stock fall after being seen another year or 2. Which is why so many European players get drafted based on silly workouts and measurements. NBA teams try to project what they can be and after seeing more of them, the ceiling of a player almost always lowers (recently anyway). Therefore, Adams needs to consider all risks when making his decision… including the risk that marginal improvement may in fact hurt his stock, on top of injuries lost earnings etc. And to say Tim Duncan would’ve been a bust if he had come out a year or 2 early is simply ridiculous.

Comment by Pete in MD 02.15.13 @ 9:52 am

I am flat out amazed that more people aren’t curious about the injury he already has.You would think someone in the media would at least ask how he got it,and what is the healing process etc..Other than a few of us here and the NZ mentor nobody seems to care.A thumb injury on your good hand to a basketball player is like playing with to off hands or worse.Where is the media anyway?How come none of those idiots noticed,He’s been taped up heavilly for a month and a half.

Comment by spiritofsection22 02.15.13 @ 10:46 am

What ESPN “thinks” doesn’t count. What really matters is what NBA executives think.
3.8? Pretty good stuff; all with a bum thumb.
Does it matter what the injury is? Really, what significance is there in knowing the clinical diagnosis? It is taped and he is playing. I don’t think he has received poor medical attention.
SA has a good grip on his inner self and it seems as if he is saying to the rest of the world that he has lived his life under his terms and nothing is going to change that.
He stays for one more year then off to NBA riches as a top 5 pick–regardless of what anyone at ESPN thinks.

Comment by sfpitt 02.15.13 @ 12:47 pm

Thus endeth the sad saga of whether or not Mr,Steve Adams is ready for the NBA!!! OBVIOUSLY NOT. For that matter neith is Talib Zanna. Both lads were a major disaster today against Marquette. Pitt was thorough THRASHED in the inside game. No competition. Now Pitt should gt realistic as the FIGHTING MAD Irish come in fresh from a licking by Providence. The Big East has and has had MANY FLAWS, but hoop drams over the years is not one of them!! Dixon’s crew and Pitt fans should be thoroughly on their guard against the South Benders. ND hates to lose. Perhaps even more than Pitt!! The only ball player in the Saturday fiasco for Pitt was Patterson who showed he can hit the 3’s, especia;;y when he is on the run. If you want to see Adams in the Blue and Gold folks, you will will have the opportunity next season. Rev. George from Columbus.

Comment by Rev. George Mehaffey 02.16.13 @ 3:53 pm

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