I'm one of those quiet citizens that reads numerous articles and post, with my constant responses only being heard by my Apple imac. But, I have to get something off my chest. It's a tragedy how underappreciated Marcus Camby truly is, and how obsess this franchise is with Chris Kaman. Now this isn't one of those illogical "unsavvy" fan rants about how I just hate Kaman because of his goofy demeanor and ridiculous hairstyle. No, although that adds to the equation, I feel that he is one of the better centers of this league, but just not the right center for this team. I'm not gonna get as statistical as Steve or Kevin would, but i will use common observations to support why we need to begin forgetting Christopher Zane Kaman.
Lets start by asking the question, "As a center, what is Chris Kaman's greatest strength?" I think we can all agree that it's his ability to score. Now mind you, I'm not saying he's great at this, I'm simply stating that it is HIS greatest asset as a NBA center, but more of that later. He is not a great defending center, he's not a playmaking center with good court vision, awareness, control, and high basketball IQ, and he's not a rebounding center. He is a scorer. Now I ask you this, "Do we need a "scoring center?" I agree that players that can score should always be welcomed on any team, but when that is all a player has to offer, particularly at such a vital position, it becomes a different matter. Moreover, examining this club, you will realize we're stacked with scorers in our lineup. Good scores. Hell great scorers, maybe not as late, but great scorers. Eric, the new and improved Al, a healthy Blake, and we all know what Baron is capable of. Thats four fully cable scoring options, why the hell would we want to tie up valuable offensive possession time with the ball in the clumsy hands of Chris Kaman. Now one could make a point that during a time like this with Eric back and forth with injuries and Blake out, that having a scorer like Chris is good to have around. Exactly, and this was his opportunity to show the Nation why Dunleavy been stuffing him down our throats for so long. And don't get me wrong he had some great games, but to be a "scoring center" you better be able to not only score, but score on a consistent basis. You're not defending so great, your not making "savvy"(I'm not letting that go Dunleavy) court decesions, and your not rebounding...so yes you better be able to score at a high consistent basis. Is he? Is he clutch? Would you give Chris Kaman the ball in the 4th quarter with 15 secs left down by one? A fair simple "No" is my answer. Actually it's common knowledge that Chris' performance decreases in clutch situations...and is that a great trait for a "scorer"? Fellow citizens, this was Chris' last opportunity and he showed us his scoring potential, but it's just not a good fit with this team.
Which brings me to my final point. Marcus Camby. Prior to the beginning of last season I was not considered a Camby fan. I didn't dislike him, but was rather indifferent about him. But after witnessing two seasons with him on our team, I dare to say that Marcus Camby is undoubtently this teams MVP. Aside from Eric's flashes of greatness last season, Camby's consistent performances was the only thing worth cheering last year. And his solid play only continued into this season. The tragedy is he does not get the recognition he deserves because he does it quietly. He's not pouring in a string of games of 20 plus performances, he's to busy consistently (no string) grabbing a zillion rebounds and swatting just as many shots. Lets look at question #1, but now pose it to Camby. What is his strength? Some will say defender. Does this team need that...ah hell yeah. Does he do it consistently....ah hell yeah. Some might answer rebounder...Does this team need that....ah hell yeah. Does he do it consistently....ah hell yeah. I agree with both, but would also answer, great playmaker. I could ramble off points to support this, but look no further than the Legendary Greatest Fourth Quarter of Clipper History. Who can forget "the pass"? Funny thing is, it didn't surprise me. News Flash, Camby is one of the best passing centers in the league. Also, which Kevin pointed out so well, Cambys ability to use his head and instruct Kaman on a vital defensive stop during live action is just the kind of leadership this team needs. Can we ever expect any of this from Kaman? Some Kaman fans may argue the age difference and state that Camby's years are numbered. True, which makes him perfect for this team. Camby still has a few more good years left in him, during that time he can continue to mentor our future center, D. Jordan. Do we want Christopher Zane Kaman mentoring our future center? Lets not make the same mistake that Toronto, New York, and especially Dever made. Good centers are hard to come by. Lets tie this guy up for the rest of his career. He is exactly what we need with Blake, Gordon, Baron, and Al...that lineup just makes me gringe with excitement. Kaman will only slow us down, by fumbling a past, or holding the ball too long, or by missing a defensive assignment. Keep Camby...and Forget Christopher Zane Kaman.