I was listening to the latest NBA Today podcast with Mike Yam and Tim Legler earlier at the gym and they were talking about the effect the shortened season is going to have on particular teams and it then got me thinking about our roster makeup and how we are suited for the effects of this squashed-in regular season (this was in between sweating some of my extra pre-Christmas treats calories off!).
When the excitement of the CP3 and Billups pickups calmed down, a number of people here were looking at our roster "inbalance" and suggesting we package up a combination of one of more of the following - Mo/Foye/Bledsoe/Gomes - in order to get another quality backup big. While we certainly needed another big (possibly two), trading away our guard rotation could have come back to haunt us later in the season.
When I look closely, I think the FO have done a superb job this year in looking at the demands that are going to be placed on the roster and balancing it accordingly.For a start, this schedule is going to hit the veterans hardest as they aren't going to have as much time for their bodies to recover from the rigeurs of each game. Then, probably the rookies are going to be hit hard. Sure, they are young and energetic but they haven't yet experienced the intensity of the NBA and the games are going to come thick and fast this year, meaning some of them are going to hit the rookie wall harder and earlier.
Just look at our schedule. From 10th to 18th Jan we play 6 games in 8 days!!! This then continues to 8 games in 12 days!! It's just crazy. Feb starts with 10 games in 16 days and most of these are travelling city to city. They will be in peices at the end of that trip.
Our roster has some veteran players now and some of these are key players. Billups is 35 and not going to be able to play at high intensity in these back to back to back games. Butler is coming off knee surgery and tends to have a history with injuries so overplaying him and also CP3 with his knee history would be a big mistake.
This is where our overcrowded back court comes in. Behind our starters we have Williams, Foye, Bledsoe, Gomes (at the 3). This should give us serviceable rotation players to cover for those who are most at risk from the busy schedule. And these aren't scrubs, these are good decent NBA savvy veterans (exc. Bledsoe). This should stand us in good sted for this season I feel. With the pickup of Reggie (is he signed yet?), we shouldn't have to play Blake more than 35/36 mins hopefully on back to back games, giving him a rest too.
Look at some of the other teams in the West playoff picture. Teams that could do well this year are teams like Denver, Oklahoma who have good depth and balance of players. Teams like the Lakers, San Antonio, Phoenix could struggle in my opinion due to the reliance on their veterans and lack of depth at key positions.
I just think as well has having a nice combination of youth and experience (and most importantly talent), we have the roster breakdown to go far this year if Vinny spreads the minutes properly.
This is gonna be one hellava year. Hold on Clipper Nation!