Originally Posted by Doug Smith
Three spots, all kinds of money and – most important – playing time at the two, three and backup five.
That’s what Bryan’s got and the one quick dispatch I got from Vegas last night suggest that he’s likely to sit back for a couple of days before getting back into the signing mode. After all, why be in a rush? There doesn’t seem to be a lot of action league-wide except for suggestions Utah’s trying to move Carlos Boozer somewhere so they can match a big offer sheet to Paul Millsap, who, to my everlasting credit, I haven’t called Ronny in months.
Guess it now comes down to prioritizing the names and I’m sure the braintrust is working on a list that they aren’t quite ready to share with me, lest a guy who’s four or five be hurt because he’s not No. 1 or No. 2.
Personally, given circumstances like chemistry, roles, finances and the like (all of which have to figure into this), here’s the list I would make. And I bet it doesn’t surprise.
He knows the team and most of the players, has a great relationship with Jose, respects Jay, can pretty much play three spots in a pinch and isn’t that bad a defender. Sure, the year he was here he had some inconsistencies to his game but he’ll tell you that was because he never really got a defined role from Sam. Might have been a wee factor but that is a troubling history.
Another guy who wants to be here and fits perfectly into the locker room. And, I tell you, that’s a big a thing as anything. Think back to the 47-win team. Great chemistry. Think to the 41-win team a year later? Not so great, there was some disconnect between T.J. and Bosh (I’m not entirely sure why, but it was there), Bargnani wasn’t nearly as outgoing as he was in the locker room last year and as he was with Rasho, who’s a good friend and mentor.
And do this math: There are 96 minutes a game to split between the fours and fives. If you’ll have Bosh and Bargnani for, say, 37 a game (and that’s maybe even a bit low), that’s 74 and even my math skills tell me there’s 22 a game left over.
If you can’t get 22 good minutes out of Reggie Evans, who wasn’t obtained so he could sit on the bench, and Rasho, you’re in trouble.
Now, the third spot’s the tough one.
If you get Delfino, does he satisfy the need for a 2 and a 3 and therefore send you looking for a combo guard who can play some 1 and 2?
Or do you like Douby on the court with Turkoglu and Turkoglu running the offence?
Same thing with Roko. Can you play him with Turk and take that penchant for over-dribbling away from him?
What are you going to get out of DeRozan, who now doesn’t have to score?
Does Antoine Wright get a shot at starting and would he be okay as a backup?
And there’s Bryan’s statement that he doesn’t want to give out longer deals to all of these three so he can protect himself against a tax hit a year from now.
A tough call.
I’d see if I could Jarrett Jack on a one-year deal, although I know that might stunt Roko’s development a bit more and it would take Indy renouncing him and I don’t think that’s going to happen.
If you can’t get him, here’s a name that came up in a comment yesterday and one I have heard around the team, although not for a month or so.
Can do a few different things on the court; I am told he’s one of the all-time good guys so he wouldn’t be a locker room problem and he might take a one-year deal to re-establish his bonafides in the NBA.
I know there will be people in the organization who like him.
Anyway, only after that would I go looking at guy like Kleiza (I’m not a huge fan because I’m not sure what he does well enough to make a difference) and, perhaps, take a quick look at Josh Childress, who Atlanta could very well match on.
One other thing to think about:
To make an offer to a restricted free agent with a full qualifying offer from his current team that deal has to be for at least three years and I honestly don’t see Bryan offering anyone a three-year contract.
That could change for the right guy but that would surprise me.