Ahh, it’s good to be back. I feel like a bear coming out of hibernation. Except it’s the fall, not the spring. And I’m fatter, not thinner… Ok, it’s a terrible simile. Just shaking off the rust. But it appropriately illustrates what you should expect from the following cerebral voiding.
This is my bold predictions article, my writing equivalent to a Dubbya Bush “going with my gut!” moment. You want facts, stats, metrics? Keep walking, fella. This here piece is chock full of conjecture, fact-glossing best guesses, and shockingly basic deductive reasoning. Slim and JB are the fact finders, and, let’s face it, the guys whose advice you really should follow. BUT FORTUNE FAVOURS THE BOLD! And if nothing else, the following moves would certainly be considered bold. What I hope you take away from this, good reader, are reasons that I think a few players may be under valued, and therefore grabbed, or higher than they should be, and not reached for.
We’re wheeling and dealing here folks, no reasonable offer refused, so come on down to the lot, there’s a clown making balloon animals for the kids! Take a gander:
Now this model’s a beaut! A Grandma-type only drove this one to church on Sundays! (Ok, I’ll ease up on the used car salesman jargon, but I refuse to give it up entirely!) Adams was drafted to be brought along slowly, but he ingratiated himself to Coach Brooks, and got burn in the later part of the year, and into the playoffs. JB has him ranked 165th, which if you wanna get all metric like, is right where he should be. But consider this: Kendrick Perkins is another year along, and we all know he should be put out to pasture, and is the only other legit center on the team. Yes, he’s young and gets into foul trouble, and you’ll be punting FT%, but he could have Spencer Hawes breakout potential, in my humble opinion, without the 3pts. Ok, truthfully, nothing close to Hawes in terms of final production, more in terms of actual production exceeding his ADP. Slim wrote that he will have limited scoring, and I respectfully disagree. In pre-season, Adams has scored 19+ 3 times this preseason out of six, at time of this article being written, with blocks, steals and a sexy per-36. With him very possibly starting over Perk when the regular season comes around, I would trade for him for an Anderson Varejao, or other slightly higher-ranked injury risk bigs and hope that it pays off.
Another one priced to move! JV burned owners last year after lofty expectations, no getting around it. But big men take longer to develop, I have been told, and I have it on good authority that he was mandated by Coach Casey to watch his fouls, which would account for the drop in swats and steals from year one. He was gelded, but the stallion is back! He was a monster in the last 20 or so games of last year, and was a double double machine in the first round of the playoffs, with a high FT and shooting %. He also played his Lithuanian pakala (aka arse, for the bohemians) off this summer at the FIBA tournament, with his team placing 4th, losing to France (whose lineup is all NBA players), despite being the top player in the game with 25 pts, 9 boards, shooting 9/10 from the line, and 60% FG% in the game. The whole gang is back in Toronto, so continuity will also hopefully help his production. Add all that together, and you got… I dunno. But what I do know is that Nerlens Noel is ranked 49, and JV is ranked 81 by our illustrious JB. And while Noel is a potential beast that may well exceed his projection, he’s been off a whole year due to a nasty injury, has never played in the league, and will likely be on a minute restriction. He’s a classic risk/reward, and too risky for this guy. I would rather take JV in round 7-8, and use that sweet 4th-5th round pick on something more safely alluring.
Joe Johnson SG, SF
This one has some miles on him, but make no mistake, he is a muscle car personified. A two who can post up his defender, and assert his will. He’ll be good on FT%, FG%, he’ll score, board a bit, and hit a few treys, and the occasional swipe. As Slim pointed out, Deron Williams has yet to prove he can stay healthy, they’ve lost Shaun Livingston, as well as Andre Blatche, so somebody’s gotta score… If you happen to nab Johnson at his Razzball ranking of 106, well, I think you have got yourself a deal there, partner!
Here’s the thing: We all know that the kid can score, as well as do a lot things, and I like him a lot, but at 42? I don’t like what’s going on in Milwaukee. There, I said it. Coach Kidd is playing Giannis Antetokounmpo at point, and Parker at Power Forward sometimes? I don’t get it. Larry Sanders coming off the bench? I just don’t know what will happen there, and in a fantasy season, you can ill afford to have it take 10 weeks for role definition/direction to take hold in the land of the deer as it did in Brooklyn. No science here, it’s all gut talking, of which I have in spades. I’m not sayin’, just sayin’. Never trust a skinny chef, which has nothing to do with with the topic at hand, but are words of wisdom. I would love to get Parker in round 6, but he won’t be there for me, I would wager.
His foot is already hurting him in pre-season. Immense talent (less the boards, oddly), that is not debatable. But at his Razzball ranking of 46 [editors note – injury has him moving way way down], how long can you keep him on the bench if he injures himself? And he will be injured, be sure of that, sure as awkward boners occur in junior high. If you want to take a producer that is always at risk of injury, take Nene Hilario at the end of the draft, not Brook with your 4th rounder.
Ricky Rubio PG
So I have an inside scoop here: I happen to be friends with a guy who’s cousins with the guy who operates the tee shirt cannon at the Target Center Area, and he has said that Ricky’s offence is not looking good, and not good enough for me to bite at 28. He will definitely dish and steal, as JB has pointed out, but I’m also worried about the dimes dropping a scootch with a new Love-less cast. My Gut’s on the mike here, people, straight spittin. But if, say, Mike Conley was there to take, I’d buy American (one more car zinger, Booyaa!)
That’s all I have for now, sports fans. Truth be told, it’s hard to poke holes in the rankings the two real analysts at Razzball have compiled for your viewing pleasure, so consider that when you sharpen your tongue to disagree with me.
Puh-leaze, let me know what you think, I’d love the comments!