The Wolves signed the athletic, 7-foot backup big man we've all been pining for today, and at a reasonable price without having to give up any assets in a trade. I'm starting to really like the long-term outlook of Kahn's rebuilding plan. A look at it, and where I think it's ultimately headed, below the fold.
This site has recently debated whether or not it was a good idea to so thoroughly tear down the McHale squad. I think it was, but that's beside the point now. Kahn did it, and in quick and dramatic fashion. The core of the Old Wolves was Jefferson, Love and Foye, with complimentary pieces Miller, Telfair, Craig Smith, and Corey Brewer around that core. Other than Brewer, who I doubt figures too prominently into the team's long-term plans, everyone but Jefferson and Love are gone. Now we're left with a core of Jefferson, Love, and Jocky Flubio (I'm assuming, long term, only one stays). With that core, the Wolves needed to add:
- Athletic, long starters at both the 2 and 3 who can run the floor and play defense (and preferably at least one of the two could shoot the three.)
- A shot-blocking, legitimate seven-foot big man who also can run the floor and finish in transition.
If Ryan Hollins pans out (and I like his upside), then one of those needs is crossed off the list. And after what we've seen of Kahn so far, does anyone doubt that he'll turn all the assets he's acquired (all the contracts, maybe some draft picks, and the half of Flubio that goes) into one or both of those athletic wing players, whether they are lottery picks in next year's draft or existing players like Jason Richardson, by the start of next season? In Kahn's short but busy time as this team's GM, he hasn't once disappointed us with a refusal to act or part with assets. He has been absolutely aggressive in his dealings.
So if you look forward and see the picture begin to clear up, we could be looking at an opening day 2010 rotation something like this:
PG: Jocky Flubio/ Functional Veteran Backup via Free-Agency
SG: Athletic Wing 1/ Wayne Ellington/ Rodney Carney (?)
SF: Athletic Wing 2/ Corey Brewer/ Ryan Gomes
PF: Kevin Love/ Ryan Hollins
C: Al Jefferson/ Ryan Hollins
And that should be a fun team to watch, and a young core with a much higher ceiling than the Old Wolves had.