First off, here's a projected depth chart heading in to next season:
PG: Lillard; _________
SG: Matthews; Barton/Williams
SF: Batum; Babbitt
PF: Aldridge; Hickson
C: Leonard, _________
Assuming we have a lottery pick (don't be surprised to see a late season "injury" to Aldridge or Lillard if we're hovering around the 8 spot!), where do we go?
Offensive, we've got 3 pt shooters (Lillard, Babbitt, Batum, Matthews) aplenty;
Aldridge and Lillard and to a lesser extent Batum are good extended mid-range options;
Hickson and Aldridge are good short-range players;
Aldridge can score at the rim, and you have to assume that Lillard will figure out how to convert at the cup.
Defensive, we have good wing defenders [Matthews, Batum], poor interior defense and no one who can guard quick ballhandlers. We've also got little shotblocking and very marginal rebounding.
To me it seems like the perfect guy to draft are (in order):
- A shotblocker/rebounder/rim protector with a traditional back-to-the-basket post offense [Oden-class]
- A strong defensive guard [Payton Class]
- A slasher/penetrator who can finish at the rim [Igoudala-class]
Nerlens Noel is a perfect fit, as is Shabazz Muhammad - but those guys are unlikely to be available in the 5-10 range where the Blazers will likely finish. What other names do people like for those roles? Or do you disagree that those are the Blazers needs going into 2013?