In an attempt to redefine whom we draft in this years draft, I want to add that I am not up to date with this years draft as many of the people here in Clipper Nation was. The last two years, the draft player were fairly easy to predict -this year, not so much. I want to take the notion that in the last few years, we seem to have taken the best overall players in the draft. Al Thornton was a phenominal pick projected to go 10th in the slot, only to be stolen by Spencer Hawes. Eric Gordon was the easier picks also as the Clippers were a backup 2, and Cuttino Mobley was getting old. Let's also not forget that had Eric Gordon not hurt his stocks(and wrist) at the end of his college career, the guy would have been a top 5 selection, not to say he wasn't considered a top 5 selection. And with last years draft pick, the Clippers easily chose the best player in college basketball. In this years draft? We're stuck with the 8th pick. Good enough to improve a team, but not good enough to improve drastically- that is unless Wall, Turner, Johnson, or Favors falls to the 7th pick. Not going to happen is it?
So while in the past previous years we drafted in terms of best player, I advocate that this year we draft in terms of two following aspects: need and best fit towards rotation.
Clearly the Clippers need a SF. Let's face it, we don't have a SF at all as our main target is to go SF shopping this year. But what happens if we're going tie shopping wanting to wear orange, and all JC Penny has is salmon (yes this happened to me.)The only orange they have is overpriced. In this case, assuming Lebron is seriously not considering to be a Clipper, the other SF's are either salmon or overpriced. Some shouldn't even be mentioned in the whereabouts of orange.
So in terms of needs: the SF's (3) on the markets that I can think of at the top of my head are Pierce (ETO), Rudy Gay (RFA), Josh Childress (RFA), and if you will TMAC. But WAIT, but while your comparing the orange ties, what about Joe Johnson? In my personal theory, I still feel Joe Johnson to be a 2. Yes, he can probably transition into a 3, but why? Can he transition into the 3? He averaged 4.6 rebounds last year, not bad, but its not great either. I remember the complains on Al Thornton's 3.9, 4.6 isn't a increasing large upgrade. And thus while we can make Joe Johnson a 3, I feel as if his colors are still salmon. Rudy Gay and Josh Childress are RFA. So unless we want to offer 13-14 mils (maybe a little less but somewhere along the lines, i mean comon, 1 MIL isn't THAT much.. right?) to Rudy Gay and 7-9 mils for Childress, Memphis and Atlantic are very probable candidates for retaining their players. Rudy Gay is a very adequate focal point to the Memphis offense, and Childress has been a very effective sixth man. Now that's orange, but that's also overpaid. Why spend 50 on a tie?
TMAC is a special case to me. He's a three easily. But the injury bug has plagued him so consistantly during NBA career that we overlook his abilities. He's talented yes. At one point, people ranked him as good as Kobe. But again, he's hurt WAY too much. He's a good project if we want to spend on a possible cheap player and attempt to rejuvenate his career, but it might be too much if you want to use him consistantly for 82 games at the three. P.S. I think I might have found this tie at the thrift store, aka, this tie had its better days behind him.
Where am I getting at? We need a three, and by doing so, we are very probable in overspending, finding an injury plagued one, or a player better suited at a different position. Oh, and no more tie analogies, I promise.
So as you can see, we clearly are in desperate need of finding a three, and some dress shoes. There are quite a few prospects at the position. My guess is, Wall, Turner, Johnson, and Favors will all fall at least in the 4, top 6 at most. But again, this year, I advocate we draft in terms of needs rather than best available. Lucky for us, best available are very probable to be SF.
In this years draft, we have Babbit, Aminu, Hayward, Henry and George.
Babbit is an athleticism freak. Scores pretty efficiently, has strong basketball IQ, and seems to be a hard worker. Downside: He's known to be on the slower side with his feets on defense.
Aminu is also an atheletism freak, but probably even more so than Babbit. Aminu can dunk, has an overly large wingspan, can rebound and defend.
Downside: He's not exactly a scorer, and doesn't score as efficiently.
Hayward is a winner. That's really all the arguments I get from this guy. He can shoot and has pretty solid IQ.
Downside: Critics say he's weak, not fast enough, and not athletic enough.
George is a good shooter. He's projected as a sleeper in the pick (not exactly if he falls 7th.) But some people say he's also a bust. You be the judge.
Henry (to me) seems to have a decent NBA career. He feels like a stable NBA type player, but won't have the super star type player. He'll be productive, but more in the John Salmons category.
So how am I going to make a argument? Well I want to begin by saying, we need to draft by the best fit towards the team and focus more on their abilites rather than their weakness. When Steve Nash was drafted, people ignored all his good and only look at his bad (slow first step.) But, he utilized his good and made it better, to a point where he's top 3 pg in the league. Steve still doesn't have the quickest first step, but the man can shoot, pass, and lead. Everybody was on Utah's ass for picking Deron Williams over Paul. Now it seems like they didn't make that big of a mistake afterall. What I am trying to say is, I want us to start looking at how well they excel in a certain area, and see how much more their willing to improve in that "weakness" area. All the players in the draft will have weaknesses, but we should focus more on their upside.
With that, best I believe the best fit for the team is Paul George. He can shoot, is athletic, and can score in transition. This goes against all the previous comments I made, but I'm starting to like George. We all experienced what it was like having a not to good shooter-Thornton at the 3. It can really clog the lanes. But with George and Gordon shooting, this can free up Baron to kick it, pass to the big, or finish. Not to mention, George now can workout with Blake Griffin so that this assumption of George can whither away.
Sorry if this sucked. I haven't had a good rest and I have to take summer school to finish up my GE's and IGETC's. I would elaborate more, but I'm exhausted from Fall, Winter, Spring, and now Summer semisters. Me actually deciding I felt like writing surprised the hell out of me too.
P.s. I bought the overpriced tie at JC Penny. Wanted to look good for banquet.