Patience: None for Redd, More for Gallon

Typically, patience isn’t a strong suit of sports fans. Instant gratification is the name of the game. Fans are paying money, they’re living and dying with their favorite teams games every night, they don’t want to hear about some rebuilding plan that’s going to force them to wait a few years for success. They want it now. And when their favorite team is closing in on that success they’ve been so impatiently waiting for, they want them to stop at nothing to obtain it. Clear the bench of those not ready to contribute in a meaningful way or those associated too closely with past failures. Toss the talentless, free the city of its past ghosts and move on.

That’s why Milwaukee has wanted to see the back of Michael Redd’s number 22 jersey walking out of the Bradley Center never to return for a number of years. He’s a link to the old regime, he and Dan Gadzuric, deservedly or not, were symbolic of everything that’s been bad in Milwaukee Bucks basketball over the past twenty years. Overpaid, under-productive and defensively deficient. Long ago the city of Milwaukee’s patience with Michael Redd ran out.

And at this point, that seems fair.

But why has patience already begun to wear thin for rookie Tiny Gallon?

Can we not remember when Michael Redd was everything Milwaukee loved? The second-round pick turned success story? Back before Mike Redd was Max Redd, he  was appropriately paid, perhaps even underpaid, and a reliable offensive performer. But that didn’t happen over night. He entered the league a poor shooting offensive player, but turned himself into a threat after a season paying close attention to Ray Allen. Redd happened to join the Bucks the last time they were relevant, in their division winning 2000-01 season.

Gallon is joining a Milwaukee squad on the verge of something big too. And with all of the talented front court players Milwaukee boasts, he’ll have the opportunity to learn how to be an NBA player without facing much real pressure. Yet he’s already catching some heat after a so-so summer league performance. Okay, maybe I’m being a bit too friendly. After an ugly summer league performance. One in which he racked up 23 fouls to match his 20 turnovers. But it still feels awfully early to be calling for the young man’s head. The loose interpretation of some Scott Skiles quotes has fueled the fire though.

When I see Coach Skiles say Gallon has ‘an awful lot to work on’ and is ‘going to need to be a lot better to make our team and do anything.’ I don’t get concerned. I get excited. That’s how young players get developed in the league. No hand-holding, no bsing, just an organization getting serious with its players. While Coach Skiles is saying that, the assistants are working hard with Gallon to make sure he knows where he needs to improve. To me, Skiles quotes are not an indication that Gallon isn’t going to be apart of Milwaukee’s future, just a comment on how talented Milwaukee is these days.

Three years ago, Milwaukee may have had to toss Gallon right into the fire. With a dearth of draft picks and few players who could even loosely be referred to as prospects (David Noel anyone?), Milwaukee may quickly have attached the ‘next big thing’ label to Gallon. Now Milwaukee can make sure he commits himself the right way. If Gallon is willing to turn himself into the player the Bucks want him to be, the sky is the limit for him down the road. The man has paws as strong as a lion’s. He’s already got a future in the league as a rebounder and someone who can finish around the rim. If he can turn that iffy 3-point shot into a reliable mid-range jumper, Gallon will be a starter some day.

But already people are jumping off the ship.

Be happy with the depth Milwaukee possesses. Love that they can allow their three rookies to develop at their own pace. We don’t know much about Darington Hobson yet, but we know that Larry Sanders will contribute something in 2010. Bask in that. Enjoy that Brandon Jennings has tossed your memory of Joe Alexander up high in the air for Larry Sanders to slam dunk out of your head. Then hope that Tiny Gallon comes around in a year or two.

And remember the start of the Michael Redd Era. Remember what he once was, how he was a model of hard work and grit. Remember that Redd’s glory years are what you’re looking for in every one of their second-round picks from here on out. But don’t forget, even Michael Redd didn’t see the floor much in his rookie year.

Remember that and have patience.

Bucksketball.com is a Milwaukee Bucks blog written by Jeremy Schmidt

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I watch the Milwaukee Bucks often and write about what I see…

8 Comments

  1. Excellent article. I have always liked Michael Redd. He has been the face of the franchise for most of this decade. But it appears his time has come to an end in Milwaukee. Even I am waiting for him to leave so they can use his money to add another important piece to the mix. It is really too bad, but it is the reality in today’s sports.

    Regarding Tiny Gallon, I think you are right on the money. He is a 19 year old kid that has tons of talent, but isn’t ready to be an NBA player yet. But with patience, good coaching, a little growing up, and hard work on his part, he can be a very good player in the league in a couple of years. They don’t make a lot of people like him, his size, and natural abilities. There is no reason for Bucks fans to get on his case at this point. My guess, 18 months from now we will see an entirely different, still young, basketball player who potentially can contribute for the Bucks for many years to come.

  2. Karl wasn’t exactly nice to Redd, either. I remember him telling Redd to, I paraphrase, “see me once you learn to shoot.”

  3. Good article, I’m with you on Gallon. He is only 19. The comparison I use is Daniel Orton. Orton was drafted in round
    one by Orlando, he too is a 19 year old big man. Orton looked every bit as awful in his summer league appearances. Gallon
    has building blocks to become at least a role player in Miltown. He will get a lot better in just one year under Skiles and
    Sampson and Wolf. As for Redd he wore out his welcome with me the second Larry Harris gave him a max deal, you don’t give
    a max deal to someone that can’t carry a team.

  4. Agree on both counts, but can I ask where you’ve heard this groundswell of Gallon impatience? Is it a talk radio thing, or something to take seriously? It’s true they haven’t signed him or Hobson yet, but can’t your 14th and 15th slots be D-league material? I guess the question would be if they still want to get a real back-up center, or re-sign Kurt Thomas. Still, I’d be shocked if they cut either of their 2nd-rounders just because of summer league. They were always projects.

    • Kurt Thomas is a Bull and looks like Tracy McGrady will be a bull too. The West is no longer the dominant.

  5. This article is RIGHT ON. I have read the JSOnline blog contributor posts and while they realize that he is not yet ready, they are not ready to throw him under the bus.

    I think that, in response to one of the posts, what is described in the original post was fed by the “bittersweet” article by Enlund (sp?) in the Journal/Sentinel a day or so ago (which is reinforced by a second Enlund piece in the Saturday J/S (mistitled “Brockton…”) about the Bucks having already decided not to sign Gallon). Even the term “bittersweet” is inaccurate in representing what happened in Las Vegas (if there is bittersweetness that is a function of the ineptitude of Buck management in putting together a competitive team in Las Vegas–point guards added to the team at the last moment, resulting in inept guard play). The J/S didn’t have anybody covering las vegas, and their articles on the five games were all misleading.

    Gallon was the 47th pick in the draft–and if anyone expected himself to excel in Las Vegaa, they were in lala land. There were three second-round picks who did excel, but all of them had considerable college experience (Phoenix pick–Lawal(sp?) and LA’s two picks–one from WV, one named Caracter (sp.) who was transfer from Louisville.

    One of the advantages of the 15-man roster is that “projects” can be developed. Now there are “attitude” problems with Gallon–and I am not yet sold–but hell, the guy is one year out of high school. But hell, the Bucks now have what appears to be a very good 12 man roster without Gallon or Hobson. Let’s let the young guys try to develop and be developed.

    And let’s get real!

  6. excellent write-up. I’m a relatively new fan of basketball, and I gotta say Jeremy, you are teaching me a lot about what to look for in players. Great job.

  7. Nice article. We are indeed fortunate to suddenly have some depth to play with. There’s no harm in putting Gallon the D league to mature his game.

    On a related note, we are definitely the sleeper team in the East. Despite all the quality moves, no one is taking notice….but they will. Oh yes!

    Wish Michael Redd the best….elsewhere.