F Andre Iguodala
This deal works excellently for both teams. With the news that Dwane Casey
has officially been hired for the Raptors, this means they're focused on the
defensive end of the court. They also have a need at SF(they've tried plugging
the hole with Marion and Turkoglu and both came up short for them).
Not only does Iguodala fit a need in terms of being a SF and being a great defensive
wing. But just as in the Thunder situation, Iguodala would co-exist brilliantly
with Baragani off the pick and roll.
As for us, new ownership would love to shed salary and they do so here(9 millions worth).
But in the light of what the fans here at Liberty Ballers would want, I'll argue
this is a strong package for Iguodala.
Derozen had a very strong campaign last year, having averaged 17 PPG on 46% shooting.
Mind you, as a three he might need a little work. We'll miss the rebounding Iguodala
provides(Derozen's 3.8 boards leaves a bit to be desired), nor does DeRozen
have Iguodala's playmaking. But Derozen does have a good mid-range jump shot and
he is a good slasher, so as far as half-court offense is concerned Derozen would
be a major plus to the team.
Defense, is a concern, but Derozen's a budding kid(21 years old) and Doug Collins would
be in his ear. Nothing's a guarantee, especially in rebuilding but I'll place
my bets on Derozen becoming a excellent starting 3 with Collins's tutoring.
Furthermore, even if Derozen never develops a 3 or passing abilities, that's fine.
As I argued before, We don't need Iguodala's playmaking abilities anymore. Evan
Turner can take on those responsibilities. With Jrue Holiday/Evan Turner in the
back-court, DeRozen can be the killer mid-range shooter/slasher that'll just open
things up for us.
Next is Alabi, and not much can be said. Except that he's young, 7 foot and under
contract. In my mind, we couldn't lose anything from acquiring the kid.
Finally, the 5th pick. We should treat Alabi as a third stringer untill otherwise
confirmed(IE: Training Camp). Now that we have our future wing set of Holiday/
Turner/Derozen. We have a new(or rather, a more focused approach) on our
dilemna of bigs.
Speights is hopeless, Brackins is probably Thad's replacement at best. We don't
have a future starting four. Hawes is clearly a back-up and we need a starting five.
There are two players that are highly touted that we could select at #5 that would
fill those very important needs: Jonas Valanciunas and Bismack Biyambo
The two bigs are polar opposites, Jonas is more known for his ability on the pick
and roll and ability to finish underneath the basket. Though draftexpress
states "Andris Biedrins meets Joakim Noah",it appears that's more due to his
quickness and arm length then any actual results. Hence, we should look at Jonas
as a four. A four that with his great screening and finishing ability, would
be a great asset to the Holiday/Turner/Derozen hypothetical trio.
Also, Jonas's excellent FT shooting rate also suggests range out to the mid-range area.
If Jonas can develop and become the type of perimeter oriented four we know from European
style of play in the past,along with his inside scoring potential he'd be too good
to pass up for us.
On the flipside, there's also Bismack Biyombo. The kid's got swagger(he reportedly
stated he'd lead the league in rebounds and blocked shots) and he's definately
done that in Africa. At a young age, Bismack has been a rebounding and defensive
force and he's freakish athletically and at 18-19(or whatever age he is), he still
has room to grow.
If we take Biyombo, all the more reason for a scoring four. Since his offensive
game is utterly undeveloped and given the type of player he is(IE: A defensive big),
we're better off not hoping from anything on that end.
I'll take Biyombo #5 overall, Jonas might be more polished with just as
much potential as Biyombo, but Biyambo is a specialist at a field(rebounding/blocking)
that we sorely miss.
So at #16, we're going PF. But who? Dontas Motiejunas. The Sixers brass is high on
him, I was too when he was projected as a lottery pick and honestly I don't care why
he's fallen. Dontas can be our Jrue Holiday(IE: Special player falling due to
Dontas has sweet touch around the mid-range/potentially 3pt bomb range as well. He's
crafty around the basket. Basically, Dontas is the international hybrid four that
Collins believes is the prototype of the new NBA.
The problem? Like all of these hybrids, Dontas doesn't have great body strength
and won't exactly be able to give us post production. And it's questionable
to whether he'll be able to set good solid screens for a pick and pop jumper.
Basically, like all projects for every area a project's good in, he has one or two
really bad areas that are crucial to his position.
That said, Dontas has major upside and if he falls to us at #16, we're stupid if
we don't take the guy
C:Spencer Hawes/Bismack Biyombo/Solomon Alabi
PF:Elton Brand/Dontas Motiejunas/Craig Brackins
SF:DeMar Derozen/Thaddeus Young(resigned)/Andres Nocioni
SG:Evan Turner/Jodie Meeks
PG:Jrue Holiday/Lou Williams/Evan Turner
Take note: Only reason Hawes is starting, is because of "experience", Brand
because he's immovable and he has pride. You know he's gonna want to elevate his game
in order to avoid being benched.
I imagine Collins will start Biyombo around mid-season, when he's more accumulated
to NBA games and experience. Biyombo may very well start some pre-season
games for that kind of experience as well.
But Biyombo/Motiejunas/Derozen/Turner/Holiday is what I'm confident in banking
on. Turner/Holiday are excellent playnmakers. Derozen an excellent slasher/mid-range
guy. Motie can step up and hopefully be a weapon in pick and roll situations and
Biyombo is the defensive C.