Now that the draft dust has settled a bit, it seems like a good time to put together a few thoughts regarding the upcoming season. What kind of offense will Nate put in, now that Zach is gone? Who will make the final roster? What kind of development should we expect from the players? All this and more on As the Ball Bounces.
KP has done his part this offseason with only a few more things to iron out (Ime & Travis). With the departure of Zach, Dan, and Freddie and the addition of Frye and Francis (maybe) and our draft picks, we have a whole new look coming into the season. It will be Nate's job to get the pieces to fit together as a cohesive unit.
Nate is looking at a completely new offensive style of play this year. We can't dump the ball into Zach and wait for him to decide what he wants to do anymore. As I'm not a master of the X's and O's, I'll make this a response question.
Question #1 How do you see the offense evolving this season, given our new roster? Specifically, what kinds of plays do you see as our bread and butter options?
With those options in mind, what will the roster look like? The roster currently (or will shortly have) 21 players, and we'll likely only fill 14 of the 15 available spots. That means we need to cut seven names off the list below. Who's the weakest link?
- Greg Oden C
- LaMarcus Aldridge PF/C
- Channing Frye PF/C
- Joel Pryzbilla C
- Raef LaFrentz PF/C
- Travis Outlaw SF/PF (assumed resigning)
- Martell Webster SG/SF
- Brandon Roy SG
- Jarrett Jack PG
- Sergio Rodriguez PG
- Darius Miles SF
- Josh McRoberts PF
- Rudy Fernandez SG (staying in Europe)
- Taurean Green PG
- Petteri Koponen
- Ime Udoka SF (50/50 chance of resigning)
- Steve Francis PG/SG (likely buyout)
- Joel Freeland PF/C
- Jammal Magloire PF/C (gone)
- Luke Schenscher C (gone)
- James Jones SF (awaiting finalized trade)
Now that the roster is set, at least for us, what can we expect from the players?
Oden= Defense. Period. Learn, learn, learn.
Aldridge= Exactly what he's doing in summer league.
Roy= Team leader and floor general.
Jack= Smart play. Able to play Pippen to Roy's Jordan.
Webster= Offensive and Defensive assertiveness. Time to shine or make room for someone who will.
Sergio= Command of the offense and adequate defense.
Travis= Plays like he earned it. Heady defense and TEAM offense. Able to score when it matters without becoming a black hole.
Everyone else= Either new or not starting. New guys get a year to learn the "Nate way", and the vets need to be ready when their name is called.
Team wins/losses= Who cares? Develop the players we have. The wins will take care of themselves. Now that you know what I'm expecting, what do you think?
Question #3 What are your expectations for individual players and the team as a whole?
For those of you who have made it to the final line of this post, I sympathize with you. Being a Blazer addict is a great/terrible thing, and I'm afraid there's no cure.