Jamal Crawford is a terrible basketball player.
I embarrassingly advocated the Ridnour/Beasley-Crawford deal at the deadline because I had legitimate mistakes in my model at the time (as in misplaced signs in the code), so I feel it is my duty to loudly push against any pro-Crawfordian thoughts. Not only is Crawford a bad investment in terms of salary, but he would be an awful signing even if he decided to play for free.
Crawford will not fix our problems at the wing. He will make the situation worse.
(BTW, this post makes extensive use of the PA100 metric. The logic behind PA100 is explained here.)
Jamal Crawford was a good player as recently as 2010. He was never an acceptable defender, but he compensated with his offensive prowess. However, age has taken its toll. Jamal recorded two awful seasons in 2010/11 and 2011/12. There is no reason to think 2012/13, 2013/14, and whatever other years he is signed to will be better.
The days of Jamal Crawford deserving a spot on an NBA roster are long gone. Thirty-two year old players do not suddenly rekindle their careers. When they play like Crawford they retire (if the team holding their contract is lucky.)
Here is a list of the 20 worst players in the NBA to log over 2,000 possessions last season:
Crawford comes in at #13. That is seven spots worse than Wesley Johnson.
The big problem is Crawford's atrocious defense. This is supported by PA100, +/- numbers, general NBA consensus, and the opinions of both coaches and fans. He is the only player to find himself in the bottom five for PA100.def in two consecutive seasons, and he managed to do so while switching teams.
The average shooting guard produces like Eric Gordon or James Harden (in 2011) offensively when lined up across from Crawford. Rubio/Love/Pek is a great core, but they can't compensate for spotting the opposition all-star production at the 2 every single game.
Yes, our wings were terrible last season, but an offseason of Crawford and Budinger is not a solution.
Here is the Wolves' roster from the 2011/12 season compared to our projected 2012/13 roster assuming a Crawford signing:
Even with expected improvements from Ricky, Derrick, and Kevin we would be a worse team in 2012/13 than we were last season. Controlling for diminishing returns in usage is likely to push Budinger closer to average. However, that same control would also make Crawford look even worse.
I understand that Adelman is a great basketball mind and appears to be behind most of the Crawford interest... but he is wrong here. This isn't WP or WS, PA100 really likes high usage players and even "chuckers" to a certain extent. Kobe and Melo are PA100 superstars. "The idea of Crawford" is exactly the kind of player this system likes.
Jamal Crawford as the Timberwolves' starting shooting guard for 2012/13, 14, and probably even 15, would be an absolute hope killer.
I have suffered enough. Do not do this to me.
EDIT: In response to Malastare's request, I am including a petition against the possible signing of Jamal Crawford.