No Worries, we are still better than last year...

I think we are still a better team than last year(yes I heard about Oden).  I am trying to compare last years starter and backup players to this years projected starters and backups.  This is how I see it breaking down:


06-07 lineup        07-08 lineup(projected)

1.Jack        vs.    1.Jack (upgrade) Jack will improve upon last year, he could be a big surprise
2.Roy         vs.    2.Roy   (upgrade) I think Roy will be MUCH better this year, expect him to  lift                                                      the pressure off Mr. Oden with his fabulous play.
3.Ime         vs.    3.Travis (even) Travis brings better rebounding and scoring, but Ime brought                                                       better defense and the 3 ball.
4.Zach       vs.     4.LMA  (downgrade/even) LMA probably wont bring 23 and 10, but                                                                    defense and team chemistry will definitely improve.
5.Joel         vs.    5. Joel  (upgrade) Joel was a non-factor last year, I hope/expect that he can                                                          contribute a little more, possibly a lot more.


1.Sergio     vs.    1.Blake     (upgrade) and I think a very important one.  Point guard play was                                                     very sketchy last year, we will have much better players at                                                       the point this year.
2.Webster    vs.    2.Webster (upgrade) Webster will be a better player this year than last,                                                          perhaps a breakout guy.
3.Travis     vs.     3.Jones     (even)  defense is about even with a slight edge to Jones, Scoring                                                       and rebounding should be about the same with a slight edge                                                       to outlaw.
4.LMA        vs.     4.Frye       (upgrade) LMA was hurt and only put up 9 and 5                                                                                last year, Frye can do better than that.
5.Magloire   vs.     5.Raef       (downgrade) Mags was fairly important last year. I hope and                                                                    think that a healthy Raef can be a factor, but to be safe                                                             I will assume he wont be.


  1. Dickau    vs.      1.  Sergio   (upgrade)  Dickau played ok, but Sergio can change a game                                                      when he is feeling good.
  2. Dixon/Jones  vs.   2.  Green    (even)  Green probably wont get much time,                                                                       but neither did Fred Jones and when he did get time,                                                          he was very unimpressive.
  3. Miles      vs.    3. Miles     (even/upgrade)  Probably wont be a factor, but anything he                                                           could give us would be an upgrade.
  4. Raef       vs.    4. McRoberts (even/upgrade)  Raef played 27 games and averaged 3.5pts                                                             and 2.5rbs.  I think Josh can match or beat                                                                that, most likely beat it.
  5. Gingerbreadman  vs.    5. Oden      (even)  Come on.  Oden has more of presence and                                                             impact while sitting on the bench with crutches           
So basically, my only downgrades are a Zach for LMA swap, and that could turn out to be an upgrade if Aldridge can approach 20 and 10 while playing good defense.  I also have Magloire for Raef as a downgrade, but not much of one.  If Raef is healthy he can provide shooting that will be important to stretching the d, this could actually be even or possibly an upgrade if Raef is healthy.

Now here is a very important part, we have guys that could be surprises this year and tip the scales.  Just look at Outlaw, Jack, Blake, Webster, Jones, Frye, or even  Joel, Mcroberts, and Miles(left out LMA because I expect him to take a big step forward).  I don't see any of these guys taking steps back on last year, and they could all easily take big steps forward.  

So what do you think?  Am I anywhere close? Please feel free to dismantle my argument in any way you like, I want to accurately gauge how our lineup will look without Greg Oden.  My opinion is that we are still better than last year, and with a couple nice surprises, we could be in a playoff race come March and April

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