To keep Dwight Howard, the Lakers will have to sell him on a vision for 2014 and beyond. As a result, if championships are his goal, the Rockets are the safer bet for a whole host of reasons. Read More. Written by Jonathan Tjarks on May 23, 2013
HEAD COACH:Lionel Hollins A former NBA player, All Star and 2 time all defensive team player. I think Its important for NBA coaches to have played in the league. As a player Lionel was a tough, defensive minded player...And he is the same way as a coach. Love his defensive first attitude while coaching the game and his agressiveness. He encourages his teams to play the passing lanes and to go for steals which lead to easy transition points. The grizzlies under Lionel Hollins lead the league in SPG and also were top 3 in opposing ppg as well as top 10 in other defensvie catagories. As soon as i picked Rubio, i knew of 3 coaches i wanted to run this team. Doug Collins, Scott Brooks or Lionel Hollins...So i pretty much drafted this whole team around Rubio and Hollins. There are a lot of 2 way players on this team and he should get the most out of his guys defensively. He is the type of coach that encourages going for steals, so you can expect a slight increase to players SPG averages underneath him. Was absolutely thrilled i got Coach Hollins to coach my teams and that i didnt have to settle for somone like Spoelstra or Avery in the later rounds.
PG: Ricky Rubio:6'4 180 lbs 21 Years old PG out of spain. Had an incredable rookie year putting up 11/8.3/4.2 along with 2.2 steals per game. One of the best young Points in the game, is the definition of a "Pure PG". Isnt known as a scorer/shooter but he did put up 34% from beyond the arc in 94 tries (Also shot 80% from the FT line, so chances he can improve his shot are pretty good). Not only is Rubio a very good play maker, but he is also one of the top defenders in the league at the PG position. Was a DPOY in spain and showed he can defend some of the worlds best Point guards. He also gets a ton of steals while being a great defender. Rubio is still so young at 21 years old, but has so much experience running a team. I dont think its crazy to think within 2 years Rubio can be a 13/11/5.5 type of player. If he works on his jumper and can improve his FG%, he can be argued as being a top 3 PG in the near future. I have high hopes for Rubio and i feel like i built the perfect team around him. We are expecting anywhere from 10-13 ppg 8-11 apg 4-6 rpg 1.5-2.2 spg from rubio next season. (32-34 mpg) SG: Martell Webster:6'7 230 lbs25 years old.Alot of people are going to disagree with me with starting Martell Webster over Demar Derozan, but i feel like my starting 5 has enough offense in it and is lacking a 3pt shooter. Martell is a very good defender (maybe underated by some here) and is also a 3pt threat. (a career 37.4% shooter from downtown) Martell will only play 20-22 mpg for us while Derozan will be playing 32 mpg. Martell's 3pt ability will space the floor for the Rubio/Hickson pick and roll and he should get plenty of easy 3pt oppurtunities in transition. Martell is also a good shot blocker/rebounder from the SG position. Averaging over 3 rpg and about a half a block a game. Martell only averaged 6.9 ppg last season, but in his previous 3 seasons before that averaged 10ppg. We are expecting him to be around that 8-10 ppg mark along with 1 apg 3.5 rpg 1 spg and .4-5 bpg. Him and Rubio are going to be a very solid defensive back court.
SF: Rudy Gay:6'9 230 lbs 25 years old. IMO one of the most underated players in the league. Gay may not be a 26ppg player, but he is a very solid/efficient 2 way player. Been right around the 20ppg mark the passed 5 seasons, and we are expecting him to take a 2-4 ppg leap from 19-20ppg to 21-24 ppg while playing with rubio and this up-tempo team. And now that he is the clear cut #1 option, that should give him more oppurtunity to score as well. But Gay isnt just a scorer, he is a lock down defender and a player who gets rebounds(over 6 a game) Steals (over 1.5 a game) and blocks (1 a game) He is a perfect fit with this team/coach. Him and Rubio will cause a ton of havoc in the passing lanes as well as in transition. Gay is an average 3pt shooter at about 35% for his career, and is a career 46% shooter from the field. We expect Gay to be an all-star this season and average about 21-24 ppg 6-7 rpg 2-3 apg 1.5-2 spg 1-1.2 bpg.
PF: J.J Hickson: 6'9 242 23 years old. JJ is a very good player. Good finisher/good rebounder/good touch around the basket/can shoot the mid range if open.In 2010-2011 JJ averaged 14 and 9 and just under a block a game in 80 games on 28mpg. JJ averaged 18 mpg with the Kings splitting time with guys like Cousins and Jason Thompson. On a team with a bunch of me first players and no direction, he wasnt given much of a chance to succeed. His season total numbers were hurt because of this. His 20 games with portland were different. He was given 32 mpg and put up very good numbers. averaged 15/8.3/1.2 apg along with .9 bpg and .6 spg. This was also playing behind Lemarcus Aldridge. Aldridge got injured and allowed Hickson to start in his place, during his 9 starts Hickson averaged 19/11/2/1/1.1bpg and shot 54% from the field. Hickson is a very good Pick and roll player and has good hands. He is an average defender/shot blocker as well. If given the minutes and put in a role where he is able to succeed, Hickson could be a very dangerous player. He has double double potential and possibly all-star potential (although that could be a stretch) If he can put up 15/8 with Felton, I expect him to play much better with the likes of Rubio. I am expecting 15/9/2/.6/1bpg on 50-53% next year. Hickson is the perfect player to have with Rubio. He's also another great dunker/athlete in this system.
C: Anderson Varejao: 6'11 (7'3 if you count the fro) 260 lbs. One of the best overall defenders in the league. Great post defender, great man defender, great at taking charges and pick and roll defense. Isnt an elite shot blocker, but still alters shots coming into the paint and will slide in for a charge which is even better then a blocked shot. Hes a double double guy and is a good finisher around the basket. Hes also a pretty good passer for a big man and picks up a lot of steals for a center too. Last season he was averaging 1.4 steals a game before injuring his wrist. Varejao IMO is one of the most underated Centers in the league, and he is a guy opposing players hate going against because he plays dirty and loves doing the dirty work. Great box out, Great rebounder, great defender...cant ask any more from my starting center. Im expecting about 8-10/9-12/2apg/1+spg along with about a block a game.
6th man SG/SF:Demar Derozan: 6'7 220 lbs 22 years old. Demar is definatly am up and comer in the NBA. He averaged 17 ppg both his sophmore and junior season in the NBA. Demar is a very hard worker, and is in the Gym constantly improving his game, and because of this we have high hopes that he will become an all-star one day. He already has a very solid mid-range game at only 22 and is one of the most athletic players in the league. Young/tough kid should fit well in the James Harden/Manu Ginobli 6th man role. We expect him to be towards the top, if not win the 6th man of the year award. Decent defender who has the athletic ability to become a respectable/good defender in the league. Lionel Hollins preaches defense, so we hope he can help have a positive impact on him and turn Demar into the 2 way player he can be. But even if he doesnt, he is still a solid player with all-star potential at only 22 years old. We are expecting 17-19 ppg 3-4 rpg 2-3 apg along with .4 bpg and 1-1.2 spg
7th man SG/PG:Leandro Barbosa6'3 194 lbs 29 years old. Barbosa at 29 is still one of the fastest players in the NBA. The guy is a 1 man fast break and will help push the tempo as a scorer off the bench. Leandro is not known for his defense, but he is a career 40% 3pt shooter as well as a good ball handler/scorer and a great finisher at the rim. Averaged 12 ppg last season on the Raptors while only playing about 21 mpg. Barbosa is a very efficient scorer as well, not only is he a career 40% 3pt shooter, but also a career 46% scorer from the field. Not much of a rebounder or passer, but as a solid 2.5 apg total for his career, which isnt bad for a SG. Will play some spot mins at PG if there are injuries, but will primarily be a SG. We expect Barbosa to have a great season with us, especially since he will be playing in a system/style that he can benifit from. We are expecting 10-13 ppg 2 rpg 3 apg and 1.0-1.2 spg on good shooting %.
8th man PF/C:Jordan Hill 6'10 235 lbs 24 years old. Jordan Hill is the dark horse on this team. Everybody else can be expected to produce at a high level, but Hill is where ther is a bit of a question mark. Hill is a solid rebounder/defensive player/shot blocker/shooter while being a good athlete. He will be 25 soon and We feel is ready to step up into a bigger role. He has never averaged more then 15mpg, but has always put up solid numbers for the amount of mins he played. averaged 5/5 .9 bpg for LA in only 11 mpg and the same for houston in 15 mpg. We feel Hill is ready to step it up this up and coming season and is ready for a bigger role. In 20-24 mpg we are hoping to get 7-8/7 with about 1.2-1.4 bpg and just under a steal a game (good steal numbers for a big man). Will play some backup Center, and although he is a bit undersized, we think he can handle the duties. If Hill fails to produce with the higher minutes, we at least know he is a productive player at 10-15 mpg and still have some depth at center behind him.
9th man PG:Patty Mills 6'0 185 lbs 23 years old Patty Mills is a player i have liked for a little while now. Good shooter and likes to attack the basket. Last season in 16 games, Patty averaged 10.3 ppg and 2.5 apg 2 rpg in only 16 mpg of action. Thats pretty insane for only playing 16 mins a game. Mills also shot 43% from down town and made 1.5 3's per game. Shot 49% from the field in total. Patty probably deserves a bigger role then he will get with my team, but at least he will get steady playing time. Who knows, if he ends up producing as a backup, he could see himself get more mins in the future or could be used as a nice trade chip in the future. Patty will be playing 14-16 mpg and we are hoping to get 7/3.5/2 along with .6 spg.
If patty were to play 24 mpg...i think he could be a 10/4/3/1 type of player.
10th man C:Aaron Gray 7'0 270lbs 27 years old Probably the odd man out of the 9 man rotation, but will get some minutes vs teams with elite big men(Bynum,Gasol,Dwight etc) and will play if there is foul trouble. Big strong player who gives much needed size at the center position, has one of the best rebound % in the game and averaged 4ppg 6 rebounds in only 16 mpg last season. Not a great shotblocker, but he is a big boy and will clog up the paint. Great player to have as a 10th man.
PG Sundiata Gaines6'1 200 lbs 26 years old Big strong physical PG. Loves to attack the basket and is tough/fearless. Very good defensive player and produce as a starter while Deron Williams was injured. Averaged 5/2/2/1sp in only 14 mpg last season on the Nets. In 12 games as a starter he put up 8.7ppg 2.6 rpg 3.3 apg 1.2 spg in 25 mpg while playing great defense. He is a great option to go to as a reserve if somone ahead of him goes down. He can also play some SG as well since he is a so physical even though he is undersized.
SG/SF Jordan Hamilton6'7 220 lbs 21 years old Big strong nba body who is a good finisher inside and is a good 3pt shooter. Shot 36% from 3 last season and is also a decent defender and a good rebounder. May not play a whole lot, but has the potential to be an NBA starter in the league some day. High value pick for where i drafted him. Can be used as a trade piece later down the line, or fill in as a backup SG if Barbosa is ever traded or at the point of decline.
PF Craig Brackins6'10 230 lbs 24 years old First round draft pick in 2010. Hasnt played much his first 2 seasons, but he is definatly a player with nba skills.Good jump shot, Decent athlete, decent rebounder as having a good back to basket game with good footwork. Still young, but has the potential to be an NBA rotation player. Another value pick i grabbed in the later rounds. Could be used as a trade chip later down the line or play his way into the rotation. But for now is still a project.
PF Jon Leur6'10 230 lbs 23 years old Jon played pretty well as a rookie in limited mins. Putting up 5/2.6/.5apg/.4bpg in only 12 mins of work. A great jump shooter with range out to the 3pt arc. Has some decent back to basket skills if i remember right from college. Another player with potential and I think he can be a solid rotation player in the near future (maybe not for my team since im loaded, but in real life i think he will be a solid role player) Good value pick and a nice project player.
C Jerome JOrdan7'0 240 lbs 25 years old Legit 7 footer. Decent athlete, Decent jump shot and a good rebounder/shot blocker. Not a bad pickup for my last pick. Has potential to be a rotation player in the league and i think he will be next season with the Knicks.
In conclusion, i think i have built a very solid YOUNG team that will compete for years and years to come. I think my team could quietly make some noise THIS season because of all the depth and how well my players fit with one another. Maybe not championship ready yet, but after 2 years in the playoffs i think they will be ready to start competing for championships. Gay/Derozan/Rubio arnt even in their primes yet, and i think all 3 will be all star players. And i have young players who will be ready to step up as well. And i have a lot of trade pieces on this team as well, i dont know if that factors into grading, but i have valuable players that if i was an acual GM, i could make future moves.
Rudy Gay 15.0 Anderson Varejao 7.7 Leandro Barbosa 7.6 Martell Webster 5.3 Ricky Rubio 3.5 Jordan Hill 2.9 Demar Derozan 2.6 Aaron Gray 2.5 JJ Hickson 2.4 Craig Brackins 1.4 Jordan Hamilton 1.1 S. Gaines .854 Jerome Jordan .473 Jon Leur .473 Patty Mills .213
Head Coach: Nate McMillan Rotation: PG - Derrick Rose(30) - Mario Chalmers(24) - Norris Cole SG - Iman Shumpert(32) - Vince Carter (23) - Reggie Williams SF - Danilo Gallinari(35) - Vince Carter - Derrick Brown PF - Brook Lopez(30) - Joel Anthony(19) C - Marcus Camby(27) - Glen 'Big Baby' Davis(21)
- Pre Rose Return PG - Mario Chalmers(28) - Norris Cole(15) - Iman Shumpert(5) SG - Iman Shumpert(27) - Vince Carter(15) - Reggie Williams(6) SF - Danilo Gallinari(33) - Vince Carter(10) - Derrick Brown(4) PF - Brook Lopez(30) - Joel Anthony(19) C - Marcus Camby(23) - Glen 'Big Baby' Davis(25)
- Pre Shumpert Return PG - Mario Chalmers(32) - Norris Cole(16) - SG - Vince Carter (29) - Reggie Williams(19) SF - Danilo Gallinari(35) - Derrick Brown(13) PF - Brook Lopez(30) - Joel Anthony(19) C - Marcus Camby(23) - Glen 'Big Baby' Davis(25)
Salaries & Age: Derrick Rose: 6.9 - 23 Iman Shumpert 1.5 - 21 Danilo Gallinari 4.1 - 23 Brook Lopez 3.1 - 24 Marcus Camby 9.2 (Expiring) - 38 Mario Chalmers 4.0 - 26 Vince Carter 3.0 - 35 Joel Anthony 3.6 - 29 Reggie Williams 2.5 - 25 Norris Cole 1.0 - 23 Derrick Brown 1.0 - 24 Lance Thomas 458,000 - 24 Darius Morris 754,000 - 21 Renaldo Balkman - 1.3 - 27 2012 Salary: 42.85
Champions. High-skilled, defensive minded, team-oriented. The Timberwolves are champions.
This writeup will explain why the timberwolves are
1) The best defensive team in B-A-T.
2) A highly efficient offensive squad.
3) A team with a scary good future
4) A well salary-managed team.
C: Roy Hibbert (33) Hayes (10) Ben Wallace (5) PF: Gibson (33)DJ White/ Childress (15) SF: Deng (35) T Williams/ Childress (13) SG: Sefolasha (31) Stuckey (17) PG: C Paul (36) Stuckey (12)
The coach: Avery Johnson
Defensive presence: Our starting five boasts two all-nba defenders in Chris Paul and Luol Deng. The other three players could have easily been named all-nba defenders as well. All of my guys are good help defenders and man defenders. Hibbert is the anchor, and can handle any center in the league. Deng and Sefolasha will do as well as anyone against the great wings of the league. Chuck Hayes and Ben Wallace are two forces to be reckoned with behind Hibbert. Both still make their presence known to the entire opposing offense. They both will play short minutes, and will be able to give 110% effort to protecting the rim every time down court. We have a defensive minded coach who isn't afraid to hold players accountable. Not much else to say, it's pretty obvious how insanely good this defense will be.
Highly efficient offensive squad: Obviously, its hard not to be with Chris Paul running the show. My 1, 2, and 3 all can shoot the 3 at a high %. Sefolasha 44%, Deng 41%, and Paul 37%. So the spacing is there. Hibbert and Gibson both shoot at 50%, which is solid but not great for bigs. However, Chris Paul is a bigs best friend. Both are effective in the pick and roll, and it will become there bread and butter playing with Paul. Expect an increase points and fg% from both bigs. Also, Taj can hit the mid range J, again, helping spread the court. Deng can score inside and Paul is capable of penetrating for layups himself.
Our 6th man Stuckey,averaged 15ppg in under 30mpg against starter level defenders. He should pickup a similar # of minutes this year, and be extremely effective against 2nd units. DJ White has averaged 8ppg off the bench at PF over the last two seasons in under 20mpg. He will be a nice inside scoring presence to have when Gibson hits the bench.
The most important factor though, is the unselfishness of every player in the starting unit. The ball will be moved until the best shot is available. When we need a big bucket down the stretch, Chris Paul will deliver it.
Scary good future: Sefolasha is 28 years old. Every other starter is 27 or younger. Rodney Stuckey is only 26. Hayes is 29, White is 26, Williams is 24, and Childress is 28. Basically, this team is championship level now and is young enough to play at the same level for 5-10 more years. We'll keep the core together, and allow them to build chemistry.
Salary Considerations: My team came in at just 7 million over the cap. Considering comparable talent level teams in BAT have been 20, 30, even 40 million over the cap, the Wolves are in excellent position financially.
Deng- 12.3 M Taj- 1.2 M Thabo 3.3 M Hbbert 2.6 M Paul- 16.4 M
Starting 5: 35.8 million Stuckey -8.5M Keliza -4.6M Chuck Hayes 5.3 M Earl Clark- 1.2 M Von Wafer- 1.0M B Wallace- 2.2M A. Carter- 1.4M Azabuike -300k Sean Williams - 900k Josh Childress- 6M Royal Ivery (waived) -1.2M
Coach: Doug Collins One of the Charlotte Bocbat's priorities was bringing in a head coach who has had success as an NBA player and who can relate to NBA players especially young players. Doug Collins has had a successful NBA playing career and despite injuries, he was the #1 overall pick and a 4 time NBA all star. As a head coach he has made the playoffs 7 out of his 10 coaching seasons. Collins has the rare ability to coach a young team and have instant success. With the Bobcats cornerstone players consisting of young pros who have not experienced championship level play, Collins' coaching style which stresses defense, rebounding and team play will help elevate the Bobcats core of DeMarcus Cousins (21), Stephen Curry (24), Klay Thompson (22) and Andre Igoudala (28) to a formidable NBA contender. Collins ability to get the most out of his players, teach fundamentals and reward team and winning basketball are components that the Bobcats' roster needs with an abundance of young players. There is no doubt Collins will be able to get the most out of the Bobcats potential championship young core.
Backcourt: Stephen Curry & Klay Thompson With a franchise cornerstone in DeMarcus Cousins, Curry and Thompson bring a dynamic skill set in our back court. Both players are young shooters who are undeniably two of the top shooters at their positions. There is minor concern over Curry's ankles as most of his injuries occur are standard ankle sprains and he has had offseason surgery to take care of it. Klay Thompson has all the tools to be a great offensive option with his efficient long range game and smooth mid range game. Both players can also play off the ball, move the ball and will provide the best floor spacing backcourt in BAT despite being only 24 and 22 years old respectively. There's no more to say about these two young special backcourt players .
Front Court: Andre Iguodala & Elton Brand These are the veteran leaders for our squad. Brand is a proven NBA All Star and a walking double double on most nights. His offensive production at age 33 is not what it was in his prime but he can still defend and rebound which are keys to Coach Collins system. Coach Collins will rely heavily upon Brand to be a veteran leader on and off the court especially for our young team. Andre Iguodala is one of the premier defensive players in basketball. His offensive game is very versatile as he is one of the few wing players who consistently approaches triple double type performances. With his ability to create, he'll make everyone around him better affording open shot opportunities. Every night he'll draw the top offensive assignment on the other team and he'll be able to neutralize their production with his defensive abilities.
The Anchor: DeMarcus Cousins DMC, Big Cuz, Boogie or Whatever you want to call him is one of the most talented players in basketball regardless of positions and despite young age has proven to be one of the top post players in basketball. He is an elite rebounder, has a rare offensive skill set because of his speed and strength at the C position, can pass and brings defense to the Table. He is a natural center where he has statistically and defensively been the most efficient during his short career. He has gotten a bad rap on his image but with veterans like Brand and Iguodala and a great player coach in Collins there is no doubt Cousins potential can be reached as one of the top forces in basketball.
The Bench: The bobcats bench rotation is comprised of 10 NBA starters who unlike many other nba players "stay in their lane" in terms of skill set. The biggest wild card on my bench is Jordan Crawford who is a dynamic scorer off the bench off the dribble and creating for others. 25 year old Vasquez is one of the biggest point guards in basketball and has proven he can run a team and set up his teammates. He is a leader as well who'll set up the offensively and play alongside both Curry, Thompson or Iguodala if necessary. Williams is only 25 but a seasoned veteran who has been a long time starter. He is solid in all facets improving his jumpshot every year and his 3pt shooting. He can defend, rebound and make the open shot. Booker and Koufos are our two big boys in the middle. They both bring a defense and rebounding first mentality and efficient scorers in the paint. Again this is a team with set roles and these guys will stay in their lane playing within the team concept that Coach Collins stresses.
The Rest Peitrus is a veteran who has been involved in playoff wars as a starter and role player. Hell bring outside shooting and a defensive first mentality. Babbitt is a young gun with the potential to crack the rotation as an outside sniper. White side and Lee are both young players who are defensive minded. They are cheap and under contrast who can also be viewed as assets in future moves unless they get their chance to make the active roster.
My team is under great cap conditions and have a ton of assets to make moves now and in the future although our cornerstone players are set in stone. We love our franchise core despite their young age and we have a head coach in place who will get the best out of our players.
PG: Rajon Rondo 6'1 (26) |Gilbert Arenas 6'3 (30) I Mike James 6'2 (36) SG: Gerald Green 6'8 (26) I Ronnie Brewer 6'7 (27) I Gary Neal 6'4 (27) SF: Ron Artest 6'6 (32) I Chase Budinger 6'7 (24) I Ivan Johnson 6'8 (28) PF: Amir Johnson 6'9 (25) I Markieff Morris 6'10 (22) I Louis Amundson 6'9 (29) C: Jason Thompson 6'11 (25) I Larry Sanders 6'11 (23) I Hamed Haddadi 7'2 (27) HC: Gregg Popovich
Smoke24 AKA the Bulls Gm, wanted to create a team that is not only talented, but one who can compliment each other and create mismatches like no other team. He wanted to bring a Championship caliber team back to Chicago ...
Roster: W.I.N (What's Important Now)
HC: M. Woodson- I like Mike as a coach. He's a teacher, plus a man who harps on defense. He fairly has a young roster so there is some teaching that's going on here. But he has talented young players so the teaching will only make them better. Plus he took a Knicks Team and led them to their best record since 2001. He can take a team, where I feel is the most taented team he's had, and lead them to great places...
Monta Ellis- $11,000,000 (26)- He's the scorer of this team plus for Matchup Purposes, is the Starting Point Guard. He's a handful for anyone guarding him, but he's never had the talent to play with as he does here in Chi Town. We believe that with what he as around him, he'll become the All Star he deserves to be. At Only 26, he has so many more years to be a good player for us...
Tony Allen- 3,150,000 (30)- My defensive Stopper, my guy that is going to take the challenge of stopping the opposing teams best player. And he can score with is a plus.
Caron Butler- 8,000,000 (32)- One of my favorite players since College. He can score, defend, rebound. He is a, if not thee glue guy on this team. He's the veteran presence that will be extra beneficial on the Bulls, especially when the team average age is under 26. And no matter how he got it, he has a ring so he can teach the young guys on this team what it takes to win one, along with...
Pau Gasol- 18,714,150 (32)- One of the most talented big men in the game. Can get you a double double every night if needed to. Plus is the Big man on this team that will get the ball, he doesn't have to defer to any other big man on my team as much as he had to do with the Lakers. He pretty much can do what he wants.
Jason Smith- 2,500,000 (26)- A another 7'0 footer in the lineup. Two seven foot guys makes a world of difference when it comes to rebounding and protecting the paint. Plus Smith is coming off his best season as a pro, and that's with the New Orleans Hornets. Now he's with a more talented team, so he can put up more talented numbers. Plus his claim to fame is Not taking anymore sh*t from Blake griffin.
Jarrett Jack- 5,000,000 (29)- The backup point who will still play starters minutes.
Landry Fields- 762,195 (23)- A hard working Guard/Forward Who will rebound and give us the occasional points.
Josh Harrellson- 473,604 (23)- A hard head who will play hard working minutes and has more range shooting then most PF
Robin Lopez- 2,862,602 (24)- Can take the place of Smith and even though he won't give all that Smith can, Still can be a spot Starter or a guy who will have that punch you in your mouth attitude.
Jared Dudley- 4,250,000 (25)- Pretty much a starter who gives us that punch off the bench. Oour bench won't miss anything as long as he's out there ballin.
Anthony Randolph- 2,911,231 (23)- A multi-talented Sf who could give great minutes as long as its limited and he has the players around him who can succeed. High Reward, Low risk player...
Jonas Valanciunas- 2,812,200 (21)- Chad for says he would have been a number two pick in this draft, that's enough for me
Everyone wants to Harp on statistics as to how well there team is going to do. Us, we don't really care about stats, we went the cohesion, reliability, and potential mismatches. We believe that we built a contending team while at the same time staying young and still is a potential destinations for future free agents. But as for now we want to...
Team Canada (BAT 8.0)
HC: Lawrence Frank C: D. Cousins PF: Nene SF: E. Illyasova SG: R. Stuckey PG: D. Harris
Bench: Jo. Crawford, G. Davis, A. Randolph, J. Bayless, P. Mills, J. White, J. Petro, W. Ellington, S. Alabi
When the draft started i was in the 25th position. I needed to figure out a way to make this team a win now and also build for the future. I traded up to 8th and was able to get Kobe. My next of objective was how was I going to build my team around Kobe. The past couple years Kobe's teams haven't been able to keep up with the young or explosive teams. I was able to fuse a team that had both youth and experience. Most win now teams sacrifice winning it all for lack of future flexibility. I have players in roles where they can succeed no matter their age. Kobe has about 5 more seasons or so left in his tank. He needs some young guns that were ready to contribute mixed in with players like Nene and Boozer to get him to the promise land.
Head Coach: Brian Shaw
The man that will run this show. Brian Shaw is no stranger to winning. Has won 3 championships as a player and 2 as an assistant coach. Every superstar must play for a coach they like and respect. Shaw and Bryant are the perfect combo because the great relationship they have. He will also be able to install the principles of the Triangle Offense with this team with his time coaching under Phil Jackson and having the horses to run the system.
Codename: The Kid
A rising young PG, Brandon Knight brings his silky outside shooting, with his poise and smooth game. Standing at 6'3" he's the floor general, but also has the ability to play off the ball when needed. The perfect compliment to Kobe, as they can play off each other.
Codename: The Assassin AKA BLACK MAMBA
Kobe Bryant. What is there to say that you already don't know. He's the team's #1 option, closer, killer. When the games on the line you know this man will have the ball and deliver. Codename: Lockdown
Chris Singleton is one of the most versatile young defenders in this league. He can virtual guard all 5 positions on the floor. At 6'9" with a 7'1" wingspan he is a tough match-up for the offense. He also brings an elite level of athleticism and explosiveness. His role is to be that glue guy and bring his defensive intensity to the starting lineup in a mold of Kawhi Lenard does for the Spurs. Codename: Black Magic
Boozer the fallen solider. Has a career average of 17 and 10, but has shown the ability to give you 20 and 10 a night. He has taken heat for his play the past two seasons, but the offensive system doesn't fit his game. We believe Boozer will thrive on team like the Rockets and play big role to it's success. Excellent pick and pop player
Codename: The Beast[
The big man in the middle. Silky mid range shot and tough and rugged post game. Also has shot block ability. Great PnR player and also has the ability to Pick and Pop. I think that he and Boozer compliment each other because they both can operate from different parts of the court and won't get in each other way.
6th Man Codename: Watch ya Ankles
Kemba can be an explosive weapon off the bench for this team and can even play some mins in the backcourt with Knight.
Codename: American Psycho
Codename: Da God
Codename: Fake Em's AKA Old Head
Codename: In Ya Grill
Codename: It's Yi not Yao
Codename: Born Ready
Codename: Get to Know Me
Nikola Mirotic has been called an explosive scorer with a great outside touch. We have great future prospect that will eventual come over for us and help bring more youth and experience to this team. He is a potential starter in this league and we hope he will be able to fulfill his promise when he comes over from Europe.
Nikola Mirotic, 6'10, Power Forward, 1991, Real Madrid Drafted in the First Round (23rd Overall) by the Chicago Bulls
Drafted in the latter part of the first round due in large part to the 5-year contract extension he signed with Real Madrid after winning the Euroleague Rising Star award last season, Nikola Mirotic has been nothing short of terrific in recent months. Garnering MVP honors while guiding Spain to the U20 European Championship this summer, Mirotic led the competition in scoring at 27 points per-game and finished second in rebounding at 10 boards per-contest.
Returning to Madrid for the 2011-2012 season, Mirotic has gone from being a sparkplug scorer off the bench for Real to one of the best power forwards in European basketball.
Last season, Mirotic wasn't expected to be much more than garbage-time performer for the iconic club considering the depth and experience ahead of him. He surprised many by carving out of a role as arguably Etorre Messina's most consistent big man, averaging a combined 7.3 points and 3.4 rebounds in the super-competitive ACB and Euroleague.
Thus far this season, Mirotic is playing 7 more minutes per-game than he did last season, but his per-40 minute numbers are nearly identical to those that he posted in his breakout season last year –quite an impressive feat.
Still seeing his touches come first on the perimeter, second with his savvy movement and hustle off the ball, and third in the post, Mirotic's versatile, but highly efficient offensive game has been a big reason why his club is in first place in the most difficult group of the Euroleague and tied for first in the ACB.
Mirotic is not an elite athlete and may lack a degree of NBA upside because of it, but he's playing great basketball for one of Europe's best teams and couldn't be showing too much more in the way of role-player potential for the NBA.
With the departure of Rudy Fernandez, Mirotic will be called upon to step up his scoring even more on the perimeter. He's clearly a rising star in Europe who could be a significant piece for the Bulls down the road, if he's able to make it over the ocean someday
Dwyane Wade, 30: $15.7 David Lee, 29: $11.6 DeAndre Jordan, 23: $10.1 Thaddeus Young, 23: $7.5 Linas Kleiza, 27: $4.6 DJ Augustin, 24: $3.2 Shane Battier, 33: $3.0 Dahntay Jones, 31: $2.7 Kevin Seraphin, 22: $1.7 Sebastian Telfair, 27: $1.5 Vladimir Radmanovic, 31: $1.4 Rasual Butler, 33: $1.2 Sean Williams, 25: $0.9 Charles Jenkins, 23: $0.5 Kelenna Azubuike, 28: $0.3
Total: $64.9 Cap Room: None.
The Making of a Dynasty
Starters: Superstar with championships: Dwyane Wade (X2) Top Tier Go-to Scorer downlow to compensate for superstar guard: David Lee Top Tier Low Post/Help defender: DeAndre Jordan Lockdown, Top Tier Perimeter defender: Shane Battier Solid starting PG: DJ Augustin
Overall: Clutch, championship caliber superstar : Wade Scoring down low: Lee (20 ppg 2012), Young (13 ppg 2012), Seraphin (14 ppg as starter) Playmakers: Wade (6.2 apg), Augustin (6.4 apg), Jenkins (6.3 apg in April as starter), Lee (3 apg) Outside shooters: Augustin (career 37%), Jones (43% 2012), Battier (Career 38%, PO: 37%), Kleiza (35% 2012), Wade (seasons with 3+ 3FGA per game, Wade shot 30%+) Shooting efficiency: Wade (50% FG 2012), Lee (54% career FG), Seraphin (53% FG 2012), Jordan (64% career FG), Young (51% career FG) PO/Veterans: Wade (30), Lee (29), Battier (33), Jones (31) Promising Youth: Young (24), Jordan (23), Young (23), Seraphin (22), Augustin (24), Jenkins (23), Williams (25) Top Tier Perimeter Defenders: Wade, Battier, Jones, Young Top Tier Low Post Defenders: Jordan Strong Low Post Defenders: Jordan, Seraphin, Young
Thad. Young (24): When starting at his natural SF position: 15 ppg, 5 rpg DJ Augustin (24): When starting over 4 years: 14.1 ppg, 6.7 apg DeAndre Jordan (23): When taking over full time starting job: 7 ppg, 8 rpg, 2 bpg, stellars defense Charles Jenkins (23): When he took the starting PG job: 1st year: 9 ppg, 5 apg Kevin Seraphin (22): When taking starting C job: 14 ppg, 7 rpg, 2 bpg
Even though the Wizards are more of a contending now team, we have plenty of solid youth coming up through the ranks. Trading one of our older, all-star caliber pieces would easily be replaced fairly well.
Overview: - Wizards are one of the top 3 teams in terms of fit and balance with the talent around them and a strong Head Coach with HC experience. - One of the deepest teams, having several of the bench players being starters on their previous teams; even the 2nd unit fits extremely well and has tremendous balance. - Although mainly considered a current contender, having a strong base of youth to compensate for the veterans also means promise for, at least, PO contention for several years after Wade's decline/departure in 3-5 years. - No injury concerns Worst Case Scenario: Losing in ECF Best Case Scenario: Championships (several years contending)
Starting 5 strongly resembles '06 Championship Heat team: 1. Wade (Wade/Wade) 2. Scoring, back to the basket big man that can pass well. (Lee/Shaq) 3. Other big man is strong defensively and does dirty work. (Jordan/Haslem) 4. PG is a strong 3 point shooter that does not need the ball. (Williams/Augustin) 5. SF is a strong defender with strong 3-point shooting. (Posey/Battier)
Augustin 30/Jenkins 14/Telfair 4 Wade 32/Jones 16/ Battier 18/Young 26/Kleiza 4 Lee 32/Kleiza 16/Williams 0 Jordan 28/Seraphin 20/Williams 0
PG: Jose Calderon / Darren Collison SG: Courtney Lee / Anthony Parker / Maurice Evans SF: Trevor Ariza / Hedo Turkoglu / Luke Walton PF: Amar'e Stoudemire / Carl Landry / Andres Nocioni C: Udonis Haslem / Brendan Haywood / Kurt Thomas
Salaries Amar'e Stoudemire: $18.2 million Hedo Turkoglu: $10.6 million Jose Calderon: $9.8 million Carl Landry: $9.0 million Brendan Haywood: $7.6 million Trevor Ariza: $6.8 million Andres Nocioni: $6.7 million Luke Walton: $5.7 million Udonis Haslem: $3.8 million Anthony Parker: $2.3 million Courtney Lee: $2.2 million Darren Collison: $1.5 million Kurt Thomas: $1.4 million Maurice Evans: $1.2 million TOTAL: $86.8 million
Roster: PG — Kyrie Irving | George Hill | Josh Selby SG — Arron Afflalo | Manny Harris SF — Grant Hill | Charlie Villanueva | Gary Forbes PF — Drew Gooden | Lamar Odom C — Andrew Bogut | Andray Blatche
TradeBlock: Arron Afflalo, Andrew Bogut, George Hill, Grant Hill, Lamar Odom, Drew Gooden, Andray Blatche, Charlie Villanueva, Gary Forbes
Prigioni | Kidd Felton | Smith | Richardson | White Shumpert | Novak | Copeland Anthony | Stoudemire | Barron Chandler | Martin | Camby
PG: Andre Miller / Beno Udrih / Jonny Flynn SG: OJ Mayo / JR Smith / Daniel Gibson SF: Carmelo Anthony / Corey Maggette / Chris Wright PF: David West / Gustavo Ayon / Donantas Montiejunas C: Tim Duncan / Kwame Brown / Chris Wilcox Coach: Rick Carlisle
(C) CARMELO ANTHONY (SF) - 6'8" 230LB (27)
One of the top 3 small forwards in the NBA, Carmelo Anthony is one of the most offensively potent players in the NBA at any position. An All-NBA top 10 talent, Anthony has been a winner at every stop in his 10 year career thus far. One of the most heralded high school players in decades, Anthony lead the Syracuse Orangement to their ONLY national title as a FRESHMAN in 2003. He also revived a Denver Nugget franchise that was teetering no oblivion and lead them to 8 straight 50+ win seasons. A 5 time NBA All-Star and 2 time Gold Medalist with Team USA, the 27 year old Anthony is still yet to peak in his NBA career. As a Knick Anthony took an injury riddled team that was all but out of the playoff chase and carried them almost single handedly to an 18-6 finish (a .750 winning percentage) to close out the 2011-2012 season and continued to prove that he is perhaps the most deadly game closer in the NBA today.
With the Pistons: Anthony will be looked on to be the Pistons primary offensive option no doubt. But unlike in past stops in both Denver and NY, Anthony now has the RIGHT TYPE OF talent behind him to be able to better pick his spots and score within the flow of what should be the most potent offense in BAT 7.0. Reducing the need for Anthony to have to carry the offensive load (as he's had to everywhere he's been) should allow him to evolve into an even more potent all around player. As a rebounder and as a distributor, Anthony has shown that he can excel in both areas (as evidenced in career highs of 7.4rpg and 3.8apg). As stated, a much more potent and much deadlier all around Anthony is the expectation going into the BAT season, backed by one the deepest and most talent laden teams around. We expect Anthony to reach his career highs in multiple statistics (49.2% FG (2008), 7.4 RPG (2008), 3.8 APG (2007) while averaging a very efficient 25-26 PPG) as well as truly become a strong defender (something that he has shown he's quite capable of doing in spots throughout his career).
Other Player Opinions: Both Lebron James and Kobe Bryant have said that Carmelo Anthony is one of the best and most competitive players they've ever played against. Bryant himself, when asked which single player in the NBA he'd most likely to team with to win a title mentioned Carmelo Anthony as that player.
(C) TIM DUNCAN (C) - 6'11" 255LB (36)
One of if not THE greatest POWER FORWARD in NBA history and perhaps GREATEST PLAYER OF HIS GENERATION, Tim Duncan stands above all other players in the game in playing the game the right way and producing in every single facet of the game. A true WINNER and COMPETITOR, Duncans accomplishments is truly mind boggling...2x NBA MVP, 4x NBA Champion, 3x NBA Finals MVP, Rookie of the Year, 13x NBA All-Star, 9x All-NBA First Team, 3x All-NBA Second Team, 8x NBA Defensive First team, 5x NBA Defensive Second Team and one of the top 50 players of All-Time. But beyond awards and accolades Duncan has shown that he is even better when it counts the most as being one of the few players in NBA history who performs better in the playoffs (22.3 PPG, 12.1 RPG, 3.4 APG, 2.5 BPG) than he averaged in the regular season (20.6 PPG, 11.5 RPG, 3.1 APG, 2.3 BPG) throughout his career!!!
With the Pistons: Despite his age, Duncan has shown that he can still perform at near peak for 25-28 minutes a game (highlighted by his terrific playoff run in 2012 where he averaged near 18/10/3/2 and carrying his team to the Western Conference Finals) both on the offensive and defensive ends of the court. We will watch his minutes during the regular season in anticipation of having a fresh and healthy Duncan when the stage is biggest and he performs best (not a problem given the depth of strong, physical and talented big men on this team). Duncan's great feel for where his teammates are and ability to play the high post will help prevent the paint from being completely clogged which should allow this teams various weapons (headed by Carmelo Anthony) plenty of free room to attack the basket. Duncan will be looked on to facilitate the offense (with their absolutely terrific back court play making duo of Miller and Mayo) and score when he can within the flow of the offense (he will not need to carry the offense as he has had to with the Spurs). Defensively, we expect Duncan to help anchor the defense in the paint and be guy who will lead by example and by action for his other teammates to follow (something that he shouldn't have a problem with as the leader of the Spurs great defense for over a decade). Our expectations is for Tim to provide us roughly 15 PPG, 9 RPG, 3 APG, 1.5 BPG which should be quite attainable given all the other players on this team that will allow him MUCH BETTER looks at the basket, less attention from opposing defenses and a lot more depth that he had with the Spurs.
General Opinions of Duncan: Widely considered one the greatest players to ever play the game. Gregg Popovich has said of Ducan, a great individual, a great teammate, a winner and a competitor like none he's ever seen.
DAVID WEST (PF) - 6'9" 240LB (31)
One of the most physical and intense players since he entered the league in 2003, David West (a 2x NBA All-Star) has shown that he is one of the most productive power forwards in the NBA (averaging 16 PPG, 7.2 RPG throughout a career highlighted by career highs of 21 PPG and 8.9 RPG in 2009). Considered a player that possess an very high basketball IQ to go with his extremely competitive nature, West has been an anchor both on the offensive and defensive ends. Wests has shown that he's a winner and a competitor that helps make his teammates better (helped set the "never back down" tone when he was with the Hornets and Pacers). Offensively West's ability to post up in the paint as well as his great mid-range shot makes him one hard player to defend (which is complicated even further for opposing defenders by his willingness to play physical, near dirty, ball). Defensively, West combines his tough physical style and great understanding of the game to help provide a great defensive backbone to any team.
With the Pistons: West's defensive physicality and drive will obviously help anchor the paint with Duncan. His ability to hit jumpers as well as postup will provide Rick Carlisle the flexibility to play different combinations/matchups and sets without losing a beat (especially when Duncan sits as West can play C against smaller lineups). But it's really West's intensity, his ability to have his style of play rub off on his teammates AND his willingness to play whatever role that his team needs him to play that makes West an absolute terrific addition to this team and a terrific fit with the other players on this team. We expect West to be a bulldog of a player that helps make the Pistons a tough minded and physical team and for him to be another terrific compliment to Carmelo Anthony. 14-15 PPG, 8-9 RPG and a whole lot of toughness is hardly too much to expect and we look forward to it.
Others opinion on West impact (beyond stats): Monty Williams and Chris Paul has complimented West as being one of the toughest players they've ever played and the guy who helps set the tone for others. Frank Vogel and several Pacer players have credited West with essentially giving the Pacers a "backbone" and helping make them a much tougher team.
OJ MAYO (SG) - 6'4" 210LB (24)
One of the most heralded players in the nation even before high school and all the way through his single season at USC, OJ Mayo exploded onto the NBA scene in fine fashion averaging 18.5 PPG, 3.8 RPG, 3.2 APG while shooting 44% FG and 39% 3PT as a rookie). He followed that with an equally impressive sophomore season in the NBA (17.5 PPG, 3.6 RPG, 3.1 APG, 46% FG and 38% 3PT). Then a combination of injury and lineup changes saw Mayo have a sub-par 3rd season where Mayo lost his starting job. He rebounded somewhat last season and was a contender for NBA 6th man of the year voting. But now a FA, Mayo is looking to start again and his ability (there's still a ton of it) should provide him numerous opportunities to return to the starting lineup where his ability to shoot (especially from deep), to score, to make plays for others (one of his best skills) and defend should once again push him back to his early career peaks. There is no doubt that Mayo has a lot of talent, he just needs a different situation to get back into the swing of things. And that's where the Pistons come in...
With the Pistons: Mayo has said that he would like to play the point. While he won't necessarily be hear his named announced as a point guard (when the starters names are announced) he will have plenty of opportunities to make plays. In fact Mayos superb ability to make plays and pass for a SG is exactly why we think he will thrive with the Pistons. Along with Andre Miller and Tim Duncan, Mayo forms what very well could be the best passing trio in the league. And in doing so provide the type of offensive ball movers and playmakers that should allow Carmelo Anthony and the rest of the offensively packed team to get the ball in MUCH BETTER position for them to be able to score quickly and allow this offense to truly be unstoppable. Ahh but not only do the Pistons get the playmaking OJ Mayo, they also will allow him to optimize his ability to hit from deep, to defend and to pick and choose his spots to put his own points up. He'll get plenty of playing time (with Miller also on a minutes cap) and every chance of turning back into the Mayo that everyone was excited about and wanted and who played like a future star in waiting.
Fitting in Mayo's baggage with this team: Obviously there is baggage but this is really a MUCH BETTER situation for him with a team full of veterans that can stabilize without chastising and a head coach that has the greatest knack of getting the best out of the players he has in Rick Carlisle. OJ Mayo should not be a problem at all. He'll be a starter, he will get to be greatly involved in running the offense, he'll get plenty of great looks thanks to the focus opposing defenses will have on Anthony and Duncan and because Andre Miller will be his back court running mate.
ANDRE MILLER (PG) - 6'2" 200LB (36)
One of the most consistent players in the NBA across his 13 year career, Miller remains a wonderful table setter and an elite play maker in this league. Having averaged 14.1 PPG, 7.2 APG, 4.0 RPG and a terrific 46% FG, Miller also possesses one of the best assist-to-turnover ratios in NBA history. A true point guard, Miller is an expert at getting the ball to his teammates in the best situations for them to score...a skill that has not diminished with age. His toughness, great feel for the game and competitiveness has made Miller a true difference maker wherever he's been. Miller's slashing ability (even at 36), creative pinpoint passing and remarkable court vision creates great opportunities for his teammates in both transition and in the half court. His constant court chatter makes sure that teammates are communicating with one another, his overall leadership skills, the stability he brings and his bulldog nature are assets that Miller brings beyond his passing and play making.
With the Pistons: Miller will be the primary play maker and play caller on this team. It will be his job to get the ball into the hands of his talented teammates when they are in stride and in their comfort zone and to limit stagnation on the offensive end of the floor. This should not be a problem for him as this has been what has made Miller such a great player for his entire career. His ability to handle both an uptempo style as well as half court sets will provide tremendous opportunities for the Piston offense and should make everyone that much more efficient offensively. With the help of Tim Duncan and OJ Mayo, the Piston starting lineup should be near impossible to stop on the offensive end. Defensively, Billups will be counted on to provide his usual bulldog, physical style and do what he can by anticipating the passing lanes and using his strength and experience to hold ground against opposing guards. Mayo will guard the quicker opposing guard and Miller the other to help lesson the burden on Miller defensively.
JR SMITH (SG) - 6'6" 220LB (26)
One of the most dynamic, talented and frustrating players in the NBA, JR Smith certainly doesn't lack for ability. Able to shoot from deep or put the ball on the floor for spectacular drives/dunks Smith is a handful for an opposing team on the court (and can be an equal handful for his own team off the court). But when all's said and done, the 6'6" superbly athletic Smith brings a great resume as a 6th man and dynamic scorer off the bench. In addition to his offensive skills, Smith can also defend multiple positions (when focused) and help with his doable point guard skills. A flamboyant young player that has yet to hit his stride, Smith has proven that he is one of the BEST 6TH MEN in the NBA since he entered the league in 2005 posting career highs of 15.4 PPG, 4.1 RPG, 2.8 APG, 1.5 SPG, 40% 3PT and 46%FG all as a pure bench player).
With the Pistons: Smith will continue to be asked to do what he does best, which is come off the bench and ignite both the offense and the defense. We'll look for him to stay focused, to attack the opposing team on offense, shoot only when needed and otherwise, rebound and defend like he's capable of doing. With the depth and talent on this team, we will not need Smith to go outside of his comfort zone (like he had to this past season with the Knicks) and instead will put him back into the same situations that allowed him to excel for the Nuggets.
COREY MAGGETTE (SF) - 6'6" 225LB (31)
One of the most physically potent players in the NBA for most of his career, Corey Maggette has shown his ability to be an handful for opposing teams to contain. A skilled inside-out player Maggette has been among the league leaders in drawing fouls and getting to the line where his career 83% FT comes into play. A physical player that can rebound and has shown the ability to pass the ball Maggette brings another potent scorer off the bench for the Pistons. After being mired in systems that simply do not fit his skills the past 2 seasons (with the Bucks and then the awful Bobcats where he was asked to play out of position at PF regularly), Maggette will get the chance to return to his comfort zone last seen when he played for the Warriors in 2010 when he averaged 19.8 PPG, 5.3 RPG, 2.8 APG on 52% shooting from the field while being among the league leaders in both free throw attempts and makes)...all of which came in a reserve role. For a guy considered a volume scorer, his FG% and TS% is actually extremely high for a wing. And much has been made of his ability to draw fouls and for good reason. Maggette's ability to put pressure, absorb contact and finish is among the best in the NBA. Don't let the general negativity about his selfishness get ahead of the fact that he's still a tremendous player and talent.
With the Pistons: Maggette will team with JR Smith to provide the Pistons a potent 1-2 punch off the bench. His ability to put pressure on opposing defenses will be critical in the Pistons "Bully Ball" system as will be his ability to start should if needed. Defensively we will expect Corey to play physical and use his great strength and athleticism to keep opposing big wings from establishing positions in the paint and to provide defensive rebounding and overall toughness. While the later is not something that Maggette is known for, we expect with the type of leaders and hard workers on this team that Maggette will not have a problem in following suit and putting forth some of the best defense we've seen in his career thus far. With the great play makers we have on this team, we also expect (like with Carmelo) to minimize the need for Maggette to have to hold onto the ball for any length of time and, instead, expect him to receive the ball more often in full stride while he's moving towards the basket and can utilize his potent offensive repertoire to put the ball in the hole. But should there be a need, Maggette's ability to post up opposing wings will also greatly benefit this team. Look for Rick Carlisle to play Maggette and Smith against each other, giving the guy that provides the greatest all around effort (especially on the defensive end and in terms of team play) more time as the true 6th man...which should help bring out the best of both players.
BENO UDRIH (PG) - 6'3" 205LB (29)
Much like Jeremy Lin, Beno Udrih went from an afterthought traded by the Spurs for a future 2nd round pick, to being waived by the Wolves to being one of the biggest surprises of the 2007-2008 season when he was (like Lin) forced into the starting rotation for the Kings when the starter (Nick Van Exel) went down with injury. Udrih managed to step up big time in (after spending the early part of the season playing scant minutes) by averaging 14.5 PPG, 5.2 APG on 46% shooting from the field and 39% shooting from 3. Rewarded with a long term contract Udrih continued to produce strong numbers throughout the 2010-2011 season (averaging 12.8 PPG, 4.7 APG while shooting 48% from the field and 37% from 3 in his 4 seasons with the Kings despite not having played on poor shooting teams which limited his APG numbers noticeably).
With the Pistons: Unlike with the Kings, Udrih will not be short on players that can put the ball in the basket. We expect him to play a good number of minutes behind Andre Miller and for him to prove once again why the Kings gave him that contract. His ability to see the floor and his ability to attack the basket and find the open man (why he was nicknamed the "Slovenian Tasmanian"...on account of the Tasmanian Devil), will allow him to create numerous opportunities for the many finishers in the second unit. His ability to start will also give us great insurance in case of injury or to give Miller more time off in anticipation of the Pistons title run. And the ability to shoot the 3 will help stretch the floor when he plays off the ball.
KWAME BROWN (C) - 6'11" 265LB (30)
Though he has not lived up to his lofty draft expectations, Kwame Brown has shown that he can be an extremely serviceable and productive backup big man. Brown uses his still terrific combination of size, strength and athleticism well both in terms of man-to-man defense (which he excels at) and as a rebounder. In recent years, Brown's game has also become more physical and played with an edge...something that the Pistons relish and which he will fit in well with. Browns quickness and athleticism will also work well with the Pistons more uptempo second unit and he should be the recipient of plenty of alley-oop dunks.
With the Pistons: Brown will be expected to play major minutes as the primary backup at C to Tim Duncan. With the expectation to limit Duncan's minutes, look for Brown to play 20 or so minutes a game. A more than capable defender and rebounder, Brown should be able to handle the load and perform very well at it. We do not need scoring from Brown beyond the put back and dunks fed to him by the Pistons play makers. We simply need Brown to be an active, mobile player that can impact a game as a top notch reserve which he has shown he can do.
GUSTAVO AYON (PF) - 6'11" 235LB (26)
Had Gustavo Ayon played his rookie season on a team in a bigger market, he would be a player that would be making headlines and receiving accolades from the media. As it is, what Ayon proved as a 26 year old rookie with a ton of international experience, is that he's a serious player. An extremely athletic, aggressive, physical and skilled big man, Ayon showed that he can more than handle his own against NBA caliber bigs by averaging nearly 10/10 as a starter. Having spent many years in Europe playing in the top Spanish leagues where Ayon was a star, he was no novice once he doned the Hornet blue and stepped onto the NBA court. Showing the ability to out quick NBA centers and outmuscle and outjump NBA power forwards, Ayon was able to go toe to toe with many a surprised opponent. Able to shoot with either hand and showing the ability to put the ball on the floor, Ayon posed matchup problems aplenty on the offensive end. Defensively, his aggressive style of play often found him outjumping, outhustling and simply outplaying the other teams big.
With the Pistons: The expectation is for Ayon to take the next step into becoming a potential top NBA big. His ability to play both PF and C also is a great asset as he can provide some coverage for Brown behind Duncan as well as give the Pistons an extremely big and mobile front line when paired with some of the other players on this team. A physical, nose to the ball, do whatever it takes type of player (a la Anderson Varejao) we expect Ayon to be mentioned in the conversation of guys who might eventually be able to replace Duncan when he retires.
DANIEL GIBSON (SG/PG) - 6'2" 200LB (26)
A career 40+% shooter from 3 point range, Daniel Gibson gives the Pistons a deadly 3 point threat when the need arises. Still only 26 years old, Gibson has also shown that he's a capable and willing defender and a passable situational point guard. Capable of playing significant minutes from reserve all the way to starter, Gibson is another player that shows the tremendous talent and depth on this team and at Rick Carlisle's disposal. As a member of the 2009-2010 Cavaliers that went to the NBA Finals, Gibson averaged 11.6 PPG, 3.0 APG while shooting an astounding 48% from 3 point range off the bench!!!
CHRIS WILCOX (C/PF) - 6'10" 235LB (29)
Another big, athletic and physical player that can play both C and PF, Wilcox is a career 8.6 PPG, 5.1 RPG player that dose not waste shots (as a career 54% FG shooter and coming off a season where he shot 60% with the Celtics. A player that offers the Pistons depth and insurance at C behind Duncan and Brown and at PF behind West and Ayon, but who likely would be a rotation player and primary backup for more than half the teams in this BAT, Wilcox is another quality player that can contribute on this deep Pistons team.
HIGH UPSIDE PROSPECTS
JONNY FLYNN (PG/SG) - 6'1" 185LB (23)
A former no.5th overall pick, Flynn has yet to find the right team and system for his skills. After being traded to Portland, Flynn finally began to show the ability that made him such a hot commodity coming out of Syracuse by averaging nearly 4.0 APG for the Blazers. An explosive player that can drive to the basket and create shots opportunities for himself and others, we look to develop Flynn and believe that the best is yet to come.
DONATAS MOTIEJUNAS (PF/C) - 7'0" 240LB (21)
Considered by many to be the best and most talented young big in Europe, Motiejunas has never been short on ability and upside. The concern going into the 2011 draft was about desire and his ability to add weight to his frame. Both concerns have been answered and then some by Motiejunas' stellar evolution into arguably the best big man in Euroleague play. A 7 footer with unbelievable quickness and the ability to score in the paint with a myriad of spin moves, to put the ball on the floor and drive to the basket for powerful dunks AND to hit from deep, Motiejunas would very likely be one of the top picks (only behind Anthony Davis) had he declared for the 2012 draft instead of the 2011 draft. But even beyond the great offensive potential, Motiejunas has become a vocal and intense player overall willing to crash the boards (where he's currently the best rebounder in the Euroleague) and challenge shots. Truly a player who appears to be on his way to greatness.
CHRIS WRIGHT (SF/PF) - 6'8" 226LB (23)
One of the most physically gifted forwards to come out of college in recent memory, Chris Wright had his welcoming party in the last game of the season with a 25 point, 8 rebound, 2 blocks, 11-14 shooting night against the Spurs who were still in play attempting to lock up home court advantage. An explosive finisher and rebounder, Wright is known to be a fiercely competitive player that is willing to do the dirty work and do whatever it takes to win. A player that most who have played with him have said is a great teammate, a intense competitor and a smart individual we look for Chris Wright to continue to work hard and develop and to step into the spotlight in the not to distant future.
Winner of the NBA Coach of the Year in 2002, Rick Carlisle lead the Dallas Mavericks to an NBA title in 2011. Known as a great x's and o's guy and for his ability to always be a few steps ahead of the other great coaches in the NBA, Carlisle is a master at maximizing the skills of his players and getting them to execute to plan. All of which has seen Carlisle, a disciple of the great Chuck Daly, take his team to the playoffs in every year but one of his head coaching career. Carlisle's familiarity with getting a primarily offensively geared team to not only execute their offense to perfection but to also play excellent collective defense is what makes him a perfect head coach to lead this team to a title. His ability to get players to elevate their games and to focus will help guys across the board to become better than they've ever been (from Carmelo Anthony, to OJ Mayo, to JR smith, to Corey Maggette all the way down to the young players we have on this team). His ability to make sure his team executes the game plan and to have game plans built for every opponent will insure that this team does not slack or isn't caught unprepared for any opponent. With Carlisle at the helm of this Pistons team, we feel that we have the perfect coach and player mix to help bring another title to Detroit.
"BULL DOGS, BULL-DOZING & THE ART OF BULLY BALL"
There is no secret that this Pistons team is EXTREMELY talented and deep. But talent and depth alone doesn't win championships does it? What this Pistons will do, led by the mastermind Rick Carlisle is to play as a team of bull dogs that will go about bull dozing their opponents (physically, emotionally and on both ends of the floor) with their talent, size, athleticism, intensity, physicality and efficiency..."Bully Ball" executed to perfection.
Salaries starting with this past season 2011-2012:
PG: Jeremy Lin/Nate Robinson SG: Kevin Martin/Rudy Fernandez/Raja Bell SF: Gerald Wallace/Stephen Jackson/Davis Bertans PF: Kenyon Martin/Boris Diaw/Dominic McGuire C: Marc Gasol/Joel Pryzbilla/Jason Collins
LED BY KEVIN MCHALE
THE PHOENIX **** SUNS:
The team philosophy is simple: play defense, force the issue on offense, move the ball, and we'll be getting calls. Jeremy Lin and Kevin Martin are great at drawing fouls. Gerald Wallace does a little of everything. Kenyon Martin and Joel Przybilla are enforcers. Marc Gasol is our top post player and the guy that will be the center of our offense, along with Jeremy Lin.
I'm just gonna ramble on: The way I wanted to build this team was through talent, pieces that fit, and depth, the ability to present an type of offense in any game. We can go small, with Lin and Nate in the backcourt, Gerald Wallace at the four, and Diaw at center. We can go with a penetrating shooting offense with Lin at point, Martin, Fernandez and Jackson on the wings, and Diaw at center. We can go big with Lin and Jackson in the backcourt, Diaw and Martin/Wallace and Gasol in the frontcourt.
I wanted three ball handlers (Jeremy Lin, Nate Robinson, Rudy Fernandez). Two guys who can play SF: one that can play the two (Stephen Jackson) and one that can play the four (Gerald Wallace). I also wanted four guys who can defend the post (Kenyon Martin, Boris Diaw, Marc Gasol and Joel Przybilla). I also wanted knockdown shooters (Kevin Martin, Rudy Fernandez, Stephen Jackson, Raja Bell, Nate Robinson). I covered all the aspects of my plan.
The team revolves around Jeremy Lin and Marc Gasol. When we are in trouble, we go to Gasol in the post. When we are in late game situations, Jeremy Lin is going to create for his teammates and himself. He is our go to guy. Everyone else has the experience to chip in (Kevin Martin, Gerald Wallace, Stephen Jackson, Nate Robinson, Boris Diaw).
As far as defense goes, we can go to a defensive lineup with Stephen Jackson, Gerald Wallace, Kenyon Martin and Marc Gasol. Kevin McHale won with a post game, passing and defense. He will institute all of this with this team. We'll go all out on defense because of our depth and versatility. We're nasty.
Now with salary we have Wallace and Martin on short deals. Same with Stephen Jackson. Gasol is the only guy signed long term and Jeremy Lin is on like minimum pay right now. We have a great contract situation and we also have Davis Bertans to develop overseas.
Fit? Jeremy Lin distributes, Kevin Martin shoots, Wallace goes all out, Kenyon Martin defends, and Gasol is the low post scorer. Stephen Jackson is our best player off the bench. Nate Robinson is the spark. Rudy Fernandez does a little bit of everything and spread the court. Diaw does a little bit of everything and spread the court at the forward/center spots and Joel Przybilla is a goon.