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Draft Workout Politics

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Today the Celtics published an interview with Chris Wallace. Now before you roll your eyes and make some crack about him being the yahoo that traded for Gin Baker, consider for a moment that all signs point to his hand being forced to make that move by Thanksdad Gaston. Now, I'm not going to make any case for him being the best GM or anything, but I do think that he's helped Danny scout for the draft, and they've done pretty well at that lately. But I digress.

One answer that stuck out to me was the one involving the politics of workouts leading up to the draft.

The rules have changed with the workouts...What's your take on the whole process and where it's heading?

"Well, it's made for a very condensed period. We're allowed to start working them out on June 5, the draft is June 28, and you generally don't work people out that day, so let's just say you went up to June 27, that's 22 days. So you have to be really organized and target who you're going after [for workouts]."

And there's a lot of politics as far as getting guys to work out, who they'll work out against...

"It's not so much politics, but all these guys have agents, and the underclassmen who haven't decided yet whether they're going to remain in the draft past the cut-down date in June, they all talk to somebody, if it's their college coach or whoever is helping to guide them, and so the players who are legitimate draft choices are going to have multiple possibilities to visit teams. You very seldom hear about just one team bringing in a guy for a workout. We're bringing in players who we project to be likely available at the spots where we'll draft. So the players, and their advisors, have a real dilemma, to determine what level in the draft do I have our player visit. He can't go everywhere in those 22 days; he'll get worn out. As it is, he's going to get stretched thin doing workouts five to seven days in a row at some point. Sometimes they have to make some hard calls, and all of a sudden the player slips past their previously projected spots, and now they haven't worked out for the teams beyond the sort of 'Workout Mason-Dixon line'. That can create a problem, because some teams won't draft a guy who they haven't worked out. If they don't have that policy, it's just natural that they'd favor the people who they've seen latest. That can be a real no man's land when a player slides into an area where he hasn't worked out [for those teams].

Later in the week Wallace will also break down some of the top picks and talk international basketball more. If you want to try and get some of your words published on, you might try sending them a note here.