Stan Van Gundy

Ross Geiger’s 2010-2011 A Trade-Away From Being A Good Player Team

Find him consistent minutes & he too will become consistent

PG: Jerryd Bayless, Portland Trail Blazers

If there’s one player in the league that I know best regarding game play and ablities (outside of the Milwaukee Bucks players) it’s Jerryd Bayless. He’s one of the hardest working players in the NBA and staying committed to improving upon his game has been a habit since childhood. Having grown up in Arizona playing against Bayless and seeing his progression into an NBA lottery pick, it’s very hard to watch him getting limited minutes in Portland. Not only has Bayless never really fit into Portland’s plans but with the recent draft selections in Elliot Williams and Armon Johnson, it looks as though there’s no hope in seeing Bayless get significant floor time. A good NBA comparison to Bayless would be Golden State’s Monta Ellis, Bayless is great off the dribble, has tremendous lift of his pull-up, and can get to the basket. Reasons he doesn’t see the floor include not finishing when he gets to the basket, not a true point guard and he’s an undersized combo-guard. Systems that’d Bayless could really be beneficiary in include teams such as the New York Knicks, Golden State Warriors, and Phoenix Suns. Any team that has any interest in going up-tempo should consider trying to deal for Bayless, let him for once show you what he can do. That opportunity in finding consistent minutes night in and night out has never been awarded to him.

Gilbert Arenas + John Wall = Not a Good Fit nor Opportunity for Hinrich

SG: Kirk Hinrich, Washington Wizards

So you may be thinking, didn’t Hinrich just get traded? Well yes, but no. Hinrich once again is in a situation where he’ll be forced to play tandem guard off the bench with John Wall and Gilbert Arenas. While Hinrich has no problems defending most shooting guards in the league, it kills his potential playing a swingman position on the offensive end of the floor. Hinrich must find a situation where he can once again become a starting point guard. A few teams that stand out as good fits for both Hinrich and the team would be the Memphis Grizzlies, Miami Heat, New York Knicks, and if they weren’t so caught up in bad point guard contracts, I’d also include the Toronto Raptors.

Potentially "The Next Rashard Lewis"

SF: Earl Clark, Phoenix Suns

The Phoenix Suns organizations have struggled in the player development department ever since the signing of Mike D’Antoni. When the Suns hired Alvin Gentry to takeover as head coach, player development improved slightly but they still struggle to find their young talent some minutes in the rotation. While I understand with the emergence of Jared Dudley’s play off the bench backing aging veteran Grant Hill made it difficult to find the rookie forward out of Louisville some time, he wasn’t given enough time to even be fully evaluated in NBA game situations. For the sake of the Suns future, I’d encourage them to give a better effort in finding time for Clark as they did with Goran Dragic. Slowly it looks as though the Dragic experiment is about to pay huge dividends as a young guard they can lean on moving forward into the coming years and truthfully Clark, if given the right opportunity, could give them the same type of feeling. Not only is Clark a perfect small forward in the Suns system, but he’s got the perfect size, strength, and abilities to become the next Rashard Lewis. Both Clark and Lewis stand at an even 6-10 with Clark just 5 pound lighter than the proven, veteran sharp shooter. Due to lack of minutes and a small window of opportunity, Clark happened to be of quietest lottery pick rookies last season.

"Play Me or Trade Me"

PF: Brandon Bass, Orlando Magic

One of the more shocking developments of the 2009-2010 NBA regular season was the lack of playing time Brandon Bass received as a first-year member of the Orlando Magic. After signing a 4 year, $18 million dollar contract with Orlando, it was assumed he be a prime time factor off their bench, but Bass never seemed to be even close to part of Stan Van Gundy’s game plans. I can’t help but think of Bass’s few years with Dallas leading up to his signing with the Magic and how big of a role he played in games off the Mavericks bench. I can only scratch my head and wonder why on earth he wasn’t given a chance. Bass’s game is one that team’s interested must proceed with caution due to his playing ability and it looks as though Orlando doesn’t see him being a piece to the puzzle. Despite his considerably large contract for his type of talent, Bass potentially is a diamond-in-the-rough trading piece for other team’s should consider dealing for.

DeAndre Jordan Can Do Move of This

C: DeAndre Jordan, Los Angeles Clippers

Jordan is the only player that’s included in both Part 1 and Part 2 of my 7-Part Blog Series and that’s something worth noting. Considering the idea of him being traded to another franchise scares me because he has the size and the raw talent to be on the absolute verge of breaking out. Best fits for Jordan must be teams that already have an established big man or superstar type talent that he can compliment nicely. Teams he could become a border-line All-Star with include the San Antonio Spurs, Atlanta Hawks, Cleveland Cavaliers, Utah Jazz, and probably the scariest destination would be the Oklahoma City Thunder.

This is Part 2 of Ross Geiger’s 7-part Blog Series covering the NBA’s most prominent young players. Be sure to be on the lookout for Part 2 that’s coming soon! In the mean timefollow Ross Geiger on Twitter: @RossGeiger.

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5/8/10 NBA Playoff Predictions

Orlando Magic at Atlanta Hawks- 5 ET ESPN

Horford showing off the difference of height between he and Dwight

If Atlanta is going to win a game in the series, it’s going to have to come tonight. Facing a 2-0 deficit, they return home where they hope to slow down the Orlando Magic’s winning streak that currently stands at 6 games. In order to make that happen, they’d have to find a solution for slowing down Dwight Howard, something that seems to be very improbable after watching the first two games of the series.

Even with impressive Game 2 performance from Al Horford who went for 24 points and 10 rebounds on 9-13 shooting and was a perfect 6-6 from the line, Horford having offensive outbreaks isn’t a solution. The Hawks would be better off if Horford only scored 12 points and 6 rebounds, if he could contain Dwight Howard. Whether or not Horford is capable of that has yet to be seen and it’s definitely not something I’d count on happening anytime soon.

Expect nothing but the best from VC when he's got fresh legs

For the Magic in Game 2, talk about balanced scoring, the starting lineup pretty much defined it with 4 of their 5 starters scoring 20 or more points. To make matters worse for the Hawks is that they all did it on great shooting percentages. Even being the longtime, die-hard Vince Carter fan that I am, I’m a little bit surprised at how well he’s been shooting the basketball so far in the playoffs. The aging Vince Carter of the past couple years has been better known for his up and down play but now it seems as though we’re back to seeing the old Vince outside of 15 feet. I think the time off, he was given between series paid big dividends for him and for the team to maintain fresh legs. Look for the Magic to stay on track and focused on getting through the Hawks as quick as possible. Magic take Game 3 in Atlanta.

Magic- 108 Hawks- 95

With A Head Coach Like This, There’s No Doubt the Magic Will Be Ready For Tip-Off Tonight

Los Angeles Lakers at Utah Jazz- 8 ET ABC

In Game 2, nearly all the Jazz players played well, except for the most important piece to their puzzle in Deron Williams. D-Will struggled mightily from the field shooting 4-16 for 15 points. While it maybe unfair to except nearly 30 a night out of the star point guard, that’s exactly what the need on a consistent basis in order to beat a team like the Lakers.

Expect improved play from D-Will back on his home court

On the bright side the series heads back to Utah where the Jazz have a great opportunity to get even with their opponents. Not only will Deron Williams benefit from being able to bounce back on his home court but the key role players around him should prosper as well.

For the Lakers, they must take better care of the ball in Game 3. They were fortunate to have come away with a win in Game 2 as they committed twice as many turnovers (20) than the Jazz (10). Any game you commit that many turnovers you don’t give yourself a great chance to win, especially not on the road. Though the Lakers should take much better care of the ball in Game 3, the Jazz will pull out an important Game 3 win to remain close in the series.

Jazz- 106 Lakers-102

This Is What I Call Home Court Advantage!