On May 27, I asked you to predict the Mavericks' starting five plus three bench players. I posted one, too. Almost two months later, we are all SO WRONG. Like, NOT EVEN CLOSE. So far away IT'S INCREDIBLE. BASKETBALL IS CRAZY. CAPS LOCK CRAZY.
Before we continue, here is the Mavericks' actual rotation, by my contest: Deron Williams, Wesley Matthews, Chandler Parsons, Dirk Nowitzki, Zaza Pachulia, with any of J.J. Barea, Devin Harris, Jeremy Evans, Charlie Villanueva or Samuel Dalembert counting as a "top three" sub.
Spicy_Curry425 was the only one to predict Pachulia on the roster in this exercise, but he had him coming off the bench behind Hasheem Thabeet while Ish Smith and C.J. Wilcox started in the backcourt. He also had Pops Mensah-Bonsu on the bench. So ... yeah, good try but no cigar.
Three commenters correctly predicted Deron Williams as the Mavericks' starting point guard. Nickas Knows did it, but he also predicted himself as the team's 12th man, along with Monta Ellis, Tyson Chandler and Al-Farouq Aminu all returning.
rico16135 also correctly predicted Williams at point -- while guessing both LaMarcus Aldridge and DeAndre Jordan would come to Dallas, too. JK19 also had a fun -- but incredibly insane -- prediction of Williams and Lance Stephenson in the backcourt while D.J. Augustine, Luis Scola and Aminu came off the bench.
So no, none of the 363 comments came anywhere close to the lineup the Mavericks will trot out there in late October. (Just in case something tricky happens at center: Samuel Dalembert was mentioned in two predictions, both as a backup, and JaVale McGee's name was not mentioned. That second part actually surprises me a little bit, but I suppose in May we were all still thinking somewhat rationally.)
Full disclosure: here's what I had as a starting five and bench.
Nope on EVERY SINGLE PREDICTION. I should resign.
By my count, there was only one prediction of Matthews and Jordan together, by Moneyball staffer Danny Webster. Obviously, that roster nearly came to fruition if not for that thing that happened in July that we still don't have a catchy name for. JordanGhazi? We're getting closer.
Another user whose post I cannot find anymore had Jordan plus Jeremy Lin, I think. Lin was thrown in there a few times. Mainly, it was a lot of Jordan plus Khris Middleton or Danny Green. I think if we had conducted this survey a month later, it would have been more skewed towards Matthews, but that's water under the bridge. Six people ended up picking Matthews, which seems low to me in retrospect.
We had a rough points system outlined but I'm not sure anyone truly won. I wouldn't even know where to start with it. You all did great. Basketball is a crazy madman's game that we should stop trying to predict. Or maybe not, considering that's half the fun of it.
Read through those comments and share your own crazy findings.