Tag:Andray Blatche
Posted on: October 8, 2010 2:08 pm

The ASSASSIN Team is...

I must make it clear as to what I term as an ASSASSIN Team. I am not refering to a crappy team that somehow makes the playoffs or a low to middle seed playoff team that wins the the NBA Finals. What I am looking for is a borderline playoff team that somehow makes the playoffs and grabs the 8th seed and knocks off the top seed in the first round. Think of the Warriors knocking off the Mavericks a few seasons ago. They then went on to lose, but the damage was done. That was a peret expample of an assassin team. Against the odds they killed off a much greater foe.

So which of these four teams do you think could sneak into the playoffs and knock out the top seed in the East or West, likely but not certainly the Heat or Lakers

Wizards. With John Wall looking like a stud early on and with Josh Howard returning at some point and a guard rotation of Wall, Arenas, and Hinrich the Wizards could be a crafty and quick team. Andray Blatche continues to grow this team might have the pieces to pull off an upset. Another key will be the play of Yi Jianlian.

Knicks. Amar'e Stoudimire and Danilo Gallinari make a nice combo and with a solid a cast of roleplayers the Knicks could be in great shape to make an upset. Amar'e and newly added Anthony Randolph as the center and power forward, with Gallinari on the wing and Felton and Walker in the backcourt is a perfect fit in a fast paced Mike D'Antoni system.

Hornets. If Chris Paul can return to old form then the sky is the limit. A West and Okafor frontcourt is a perfect defense/offense combo that should gel sometime this season. The addition of Ariza at the shooting guard is a huge upgrade for this team and his play and CP3's health are the only concerns at all.

Grizzlies. Sure they overpaid for Rudy Gay but this team is young and has a lot of good pieces in place. They have a pretty good foursome in Mayo, Gay, Randolph, and Gasol. This team could give a contender real trouble. They lack a lot of depth but I could still see them pulling off an upset.

So which of these 4 teams has the best chance of knocking off a top seed in the playoffs? Please leave feedback or add teams into the mix for a healthy debate. Thanks.
Posted on: October 17, 2009 3:50 pm

Most Improved Player Predictions.

     OK, we are about halfway through the preseason and the regular season is upon us. I understand there have been a couple of threads dealing with the which player will breakout this season and I thought I would have a crack at it. First of all there has to be some ground rules set as to what is considered a breakout season. In my eyes the player has to go from an average role-player to a budding star. This means that you cannot say that Kevin Durant is going to have a breakout season. The guy is already a star in the league. You have to take a player who was getting maybe 20 minutes a game last year or less and averaging about 10ppg or so. This player then has to gain more minutes a game and have a major boost in numbers. I have spent some time looking at different scenarios around the league and have come up with 7 players I think will have breakout seasons or close to it. Please let me know what you think and let me know who I forgot. This is a tricky thing to predict so there can be a wide range of answers.

 Hakim Warrick.
The Bucks might just be the right fit for this young guy. He has all the talent and athletic ability to do a ton of damage in this league. He can play a few different positions and has become a pretty solid shooter. He is fast and seems to be putting in the effort. The main factor for me is that he should see a lot of minutes on the floor for the Bucks and will be one of the first options on offense behind Redd now that Jefferson is gone. Preseason EF score:19



 Brook Lopez. He will become a main option on offense now that Vince Carter has left the building. He already showed us last season that he is one of the best young big talents in the NBA. I think with his size and abilities that he will have his way against most other centers in the east. He is strong and has good footwork and he has shown us he knows how to play smart. He is a star in the making. Preseason EF score:18.6

 Anthony Morrow. This one is a bit of a gamble with the Warriors also having Stephen Curry on the team but Morrow has looked lights out this preseason and may be motivated to play hard so that he is kept on the floor. i am sure he is not going to average 22.6 point per game like he is in the preseason but he could turn out to be a solid 2nd or 3rd option on this team. He also is a solid 3 point shooter and should be a good fit in the Warriors system. Preseason EF score:23.2

 Anthony Randolph. This guy oozes pure talent and it showed over the summer in summer league play. He is about as athletic as they come and is a scoring machine at times. He causes matchup issues with his speed for his size. He has been picked by many as the front runner fro the Most Improved Player Award already. It will be interesting if he can continue to dominate in the regular season against other elite bigman or will his lack of bulk hurt him. Preseason EF score: 17.2

 Tyrus Thomas. He has worked hard on his game this offseason but maybe more importantly he is in a contract season and that might be the motivation he needed to play hard and work hard. He has slowly improved with each season of play and with all the talent that he has it is about time for him to shine. His jumpshot looks smooth and he is playing better defense. He will be a top shotblocker this season in the NBA for sure. Preseason EF score:18.5

 Lou Williams. Sometimes it is about being in the right spot at the right time and with Miller gone and Willaims the new starter for the 76ers he should see a ton of minutes and his numbers should spike. With players like Iggy, Elton, and Young to dish it to his assist number should jump nicely. He has a nice shot and could be a solid third option on this team. Preseason EF score:14.6

 Andray Blatche. Two main factors go into thinking he will breakout this season. For one with Gilbert on the floor running things you have to imagine Blatche getting some nice touches. Just having a good point guard is all a player needs sometimes. Also, if Jamison needs surgery then Andray will be needed to add some scoring and rebounding and his minutes will jump as well. Preseason EF score:15.8


So, who do you like and who did I leave out?




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