|So long Joe D - time to right the ship|
The first order of business is looking over what we've got. It's October 4, 2012 and the season is just weeks away so our roster is set going into the year and I'd like to break it down into three groups.
Group #1 : The Building Blocks
G Brandon Knight 6-3/177/1 exp
F Greg Monroe 6-11/247/2 exp
C Andre Drummond 6-11/279/R
If we're going to get back to prominence then these are the guys it will rest upon. This is our big three. The problem is they're 20, 23 and 19 respectively. The other problem is that the defending champs have this guy named LeBron, the Thunder have three far superior young players in Durant, Westbrook and Harden and the Lakers just teamed up Nash and D12 with Kobe and Pau. Needless to say I don't see a championship in the near future. We've got a 5 year plan - make the playoffs this year, win one series next year, win two series in year 3, get to the finals in year 4 and win it all in year 5. Lofty? Yup. Doable - we'll see.
Group #2 : The Glue Guys
G Kim English 6-8/192/R
F Jonas Jerebko 6-9/210/2 exp
F Kyle Singler 6-9/228/R
That's a short list and these guys aren't ever going to be stars but they are hustle guys. They'll do the dirty work and be solid role players. The kind of guys you want to be your 7th -9th guys. But that means we need a 4th-6th guy in order to make that work out.
Group #3 : The I Hope You're Renting Guys
G : Will Bynum, Rodney Stuckey
F: Tayshaun Prince, Corey Maggette, Jason Maxiell, Charlie Villanueva, Khris Middleton, Austin Daye
C : Slava Kratsov
These guys are the reason this job was open. Lucky the mistakes that were Maxiell, Daye and Maggette will be short lived and I will enjoy getting their $19 million off the books this offseason. Sadly we're saddled with Stuckey for one more year after this, Tayshaun for two more and I have no doubt Charlie V will be picking up his $8.6m player option this summer. I'm hoping that some contender will have an injury and will be interested in Tayshaun or Stuckey and I'm not going to lie...I'd give Charlie V away if someone wanted him. Sadly there will be no takers.
The good news is we have Monroe cheap next year so with a little luck and creativity we might be able to free up enough cap space to make a big run at someone as there are some marquee names that will be available. How nice would it be to bring a James Harden here? OKC has a lot of money tied up already. Maybe we'll get the chance to lure Harden away.
I'm pleased with Lawrence Frank as the head coach. He got something out of this team last year and he'll have every opportunity to be the guy who leads us back to the top.
Since we've got a full 15 man roster and the previous management regime thought it would be a great idea to carry 5 small forwards we might as well send a few guys down. No reason Singler and Middleton should sit in suits here when they could play in the NBDL.
We kick off the season Nov 1 at The Palace against the Pacers. They're an up and coming squad who surprised many people last year. Really I'd love to model the rebuilding here like Larry Bird did there. Make some smart picks, build a good young core and then be able to sign an underrated free agent like David West. And what I wouldn't give to have Paul George. Anyhow its time for the journey back to the top to begin.