PhillyPhilly wrote:The key to success isn't just to bring everyone back. The key is to bring the best players back and then find a way to improve both the starting five and the bench. This is what Elton should be thinking about night and day before the draft and before free agency starts.
1. Push the Wizards past what they're comfortable paying Thomas Bryant Jr (RFA) to backup Dwight Howard. Should still be cheaper than Dewayne Dedmon, and I think Bryant has more upside. One of only three or four backup fives in the league who can protect the rim and stretch the floor. Two year veteran, only 21 years old (7.31.97).
2. Use our leverage as a championship contender to low-ball a veteran backup guard who gets left without a chair: Derrick Rose, Ricky Rubio, Darren Collison, Rajon Rondo... There's enough out there that we ought not have to pay much. Somebody mentioned Rose re-uniting with Jimmy Butler as a possibility. I for one would not be mad at it. Split the MLE between Rose (4m) and Bryant Jr (5m)?
3. Use our leverage as a championship contender to low-ball a 2015 draft bust at forward to sign a long-term deal for little to no money. Guys like Mario Hezonja, Stanley Johnson and Trey Lyles have no leverage. Yet I think they are not done as NBA players just yet. Hezonja and Johnson have played for franchises in disarray, already not known to develop talent well. Good opportunity to get one of them on the bench for practically nothing but the chance to play for a winner.
Ben Simmons, JJ Redick, Jimmy Butler, Tobias Harris, Joel Embiid
Derrick Rose, Zhaire Smith, Mike Scott, Mario Hezonja, Thomas Bryant Jr.
Vasilije Micic, Shake Milton, Matisse Thybulle, Jonah Bolden, Daniel Gafford
(Shamorie Ponds, Nicolas Claxton)