I love opinions because they help us evaluate different portions of a picture we try to focus in on. I have been reading and studying a lot of posts and player evaluations. I've come up with a possibility for a bright future as a blazer fan, when reading this there will be a few holes that would need to be filled in but they should be easy fixes.
Winning teams have certain qualities that make them successful, like players that are passionate, hard-nosed, unselfish, and basketball savvy. A team needs to have players that have overlapping skills sets and role exceptance. I believe that symmetry and balance is key to a teams success on the court and in the locker room. There are two players in this draft who I believe exemplify these qualities in T. ROB and T. JONES. They have the ability to be flexible in most any scheme a team plays. Plus they could contribute right away.
Drafting these 2 players allows us to be flexible with player movement in trades and free agency. Now some may joke that a trade of LA for Howard would be absurd but look at it from this prospective, LA is a top talent in this league with a very reasonable salary which would give orlando some salary relief. We would throw in a few other pieces to make this happen and more attractive but i don't believe much more would be needed. Now some would scuff at having Howard but he is a defensive monster in the middle and an anchor. Further more would entice D. Will to possibly sign with portland making a great 1-2 punch. Must get a commitment long term from Howard (don't laugh) before trade were to happen. We would still have a lot of cap room to acquire key FA.
I think Wes is a must keep he has that personality that wants to be successful. If portland does get to keep restricted rights to Hickson he in the short term is a fill in at PF. I hate position labels by the way but for everyones sake i'll add them. Hopefully when FA begins we get some time before the offers roll in for Batum and Hickson so we can use them for over the cap room. If not, this like many other speculations are shot to hell. So if you're following you have a starting line up of -
D. Will - W. Matthews - N. Batum - J.J. Hickson - Howard
In my opinion that is a pretty good line up. Now to be a great team they need a really good bench with little or no let down. I would love it if portland was able to bring Freeland and Deibler over at a reasonable prices to let them grow into rolls onto this team. Going to need a back up to lead the offense, I like Flynn in this roll because of skill set and his possible low salary. I really hope E. Williams becomes something special and can fill a roll like Harden for OKC (bad injury mojo). We need guys that can get their own shot and put pressure on D's. They are young and inexperienced but we all start that way and in 2 years they should be very dominant. Second unit would look like this -
J. Flynn - E. Williams - T. Jones - T. Robinson - J. Freeland/ K. Thomas
Portland in all would trade Babbitt, Smith, S. Willliams, and V. Claver's rights. Would like to keep Babbitt for his outside shot but we have little in the way of viable trade bait.
Possibilties are =
LA, Smith, S. Williams (expiring contract next year), #40 maybe a future 2nd or 1st for Howard and #49.
Trade up with charlotte. Using the #6, #41, Claver's rights and Babbitt for #2. - T. Rob
Hopefully T. Jones would be there at #11. ( love for the local kid)
Sign a few others to minimum contracts to fill out roster and new blazer owned stampede team, great long term move for them to develop talent. Always great to hear that our team is committed to excellence for our fan base.
Hope i didn't miss to much. Please let me hear your opinions fellow blazer fans.