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Prowling the NBA: Free Agent Soundoff - LeBronimo!

LeBronimo
1 - interjection:
::an expression used by or to describe NBA teams who have figuratively thrown themselves off a great height in an all out effort to sign LeBron James (ex : Chicago, New York)

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Well, I'm all about fighting the battle before conceding the war (meaning don't be McHale-ish....make the call, even if the chances are negligible). But the chances of us signing LeBron are...well....negligible. Enough that even I wouldn't suggest we legitimately target him. Or Wade either.

So who should we try and sign? That's the whole point of this update. A chance for you all to voice your opinions on who the team should sign. I've got my top 5 targets, and you can read on to find those out.

Why do this? Well....

....we (and I mean that including me) don't get the interest in Rudy Gay or David Lee. We just drafted Wes Johnson. We already have Kevin Love. Right? Right.

The question then, is who do you all think we SHOULD be pursuing? Because while it's a big market out there, it's also a tricky one. As we can see, not everyone fits.

So sound off, Hoopusters. But first, read on for my 5 targets this summer:

1. Chris Bosh

You had to have know this would be my #1 guy. Anyone who's payed any attention to anything I've said the past....oh...3 months, should know this is my #1 guy. The skill, the fit....it's too perfect to pass up.

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As many of you remember, I already addressed this possibility in depth earlier this year, so I think I'll let that do the talking for me since, well, the talking points are still the same:

Getting Bosh to come here would take a massive sales pitch and no small amount of luck. We'd have to get either John Wall or Evan Turner in the draft. We'd have to guarantee him that we'd sign a real center, because he's tired of "defending the Alamo" by himself. We'd have to give as conclusive proof as possible that Ricky Rubio will be here in 2011. And we'd have to show him that we plan on competing in a year, not 3-5.

But here's the thing: we already plan on all that anyway. And if we can convince Bosh that this is the right place for him, well...I pity the fan who would rather have Al Jefferson or Kevin Love over Chris Bosh.

Speaking of which, here's my top 5 reasons why I love Chris Bosh:

1) He's basically the most productive power forward in the NBA. 24 points, 11 rebounds, 2.4 assists on 52% shooting. And he's a go-to scorer. Not a guy who plays off others. You can give him the ball on any possession, iso his side of the floor, and he'll get you something good 9 times out of 10.

2) He's taller than people realize. He's listed at 6'10". Why, I don't know. Because in the pre-draft combine, he measured 6'10.25" without shoes. That basically makes him effectively 7' tall on the court. He also has a 7'3.25" wingspan, which is larger than (for reference) Andrew Bogut, Anthony Randolph and Tyson Chandler.

3) He can pass the ball like a guard. Very much like Kevin Garnett and Pau Gasol. He regularly makes brilliant bounce and drop passes on the move. He had a sensational, behind the back at full sprint pass in the all star game. He's on that next level of passing for big man: not just fundamental, but intelligent, and even flashy.

4) He gets to the free throw line. Bosh averages an absurd number of free throws for a big man. The kind you'd expect from a guard. His average of 8.4 FT/game is less than one less than Anthony and Wade, and more than (among others) Kobe Bryant, Kevin Martin, Brandon Roy, and Paul Pierce. He's sixth in the entire league in FTA/game, and considering the hack-a-Howard policy a lot of team employ, it can be argued he's the best big man in the league at getting to the line. As opposed to Al Jefferson, who is arguably the worst.

5) He has personality. And ya ya ya, I know what some of you are thinking, Jonny Flynn, David Kahn, draft, etc etc. But I think this is important. You have to have a public face for your team and a charismatic force behind it. Hasn't the team seemed bland since KG left? No one to draw the fans? No one to rally the rest of the roster? No one to provide the team leadership? Every team needs a leader who can "lead the attack", who can...in a way....speak for the team, and who can speak to the team in a way that will get through to them. I think Bosh has that quality....certainly our team lacks it.

We obviously didn't get Wall or Turner, but Wes Johnson is a pretty damn good compliment for a guy like Bosh. Probably better than Turner would be, when you really think about it.

I mean, this should be plan A by whatever cliche you use to describe absurd amount of distance. Bosh is long and athletic: he fits the system....AND he's a go-to scorer: he gives us a superstar. I would trade every big man on our roster to get Chris Bosh, and you should too.

2. Amare Stoudemire

Hey, another guy I profiled this year. Actually themed a whole update on him.

"You ever read that book, Sun Tzu, The Art of War?''

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The reasons to pursue Stoudemire are the same as the reasons to pursue Bosh, just....less. He's a productive power forward....just not AS productive. He's tall....but not AS tall. He can move the ball well....just not AS well. He gets to the free throw line...just not AS much.

He is much more athletic though. So he has that going for him.

In Stoudemire, we'd get a big man who's basically everything out current big men are not. Tall, long, athletic, able to score at will and do it efficiently. Considering the makeup of our roster and the style we want to play, Amare would be a pretty damn good pickup for us.

3. Ray Allen

Consider this my "out of left field" player. Not sure what Paul Pierce is thinking, but Allen was questionable to stay with the Celtics all season and is still questionable to return to them. In the meantime, Jesus Shuttlesworth has [still] Got Game.

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Allen's obviously older than would be ideal. He'll probably be retired by the time the team is really ready to compete, and probably wants to go to a contender now. But we can also offer Allen something the contenders can't: money.

Ray is still a fantastic shooter. He's still got most of his athleticism. He's still able to create for himself and others. The fit is there, and although it sounds like a strange course for the team to take (even to me), I think it should be considered, and considered well.

4. Josh Childress

Biggity2Big once again has done fantastic summary work (I seem to be using your posts a lot lately) on a player we all were talking about on and off this year:

Using Hollingers' euro stats translation numbers

Childress, per36, would’ve been a 14.5 ppg, 6.9 rebs, 2.5 asts player on .506 shooting. Using bball-ref’s player season finder, over the last few years here would be his relative company for similarly sized players. There are three things that really appeal to me about Childress and elevates his value to us specifically:
1. He’s smart. I think he would flourish in triangle, and his presence would help other guys play better in it too. The more guys you have that ‘get’ how to play in the triangle the easier it will be for those who don’t. Adding Childress to Sessions, Darko, and Love? Mui bien.
2. He’s just so damned efficient. This goes along with point one, but in the triangle he’d be deadly! That’s why he’d hold more value to us than perhaps other teams. We need scorers and makers, and he’s definitely a maker.
3. He’s got great size, length, and athleticism. He’s 6’-7" with a 6’-11" wingspan. He’s efficient offensively and very sound defensively.
4. BONUS! He’d be a great locker room addition and role model for the young guys.

I’d pay him $7-8 million a year, no problem. If we don’t get Granger, a starting backcourt of Rubio, Turner, and Childress would look pretty damn good, especially if you added a Vesely type as a stretch 4 and a defensive anchor type like Darko in the middle. That team could score some points, defend well, and be entertaining to watch.

by biggity2bit on Apr 23, 2010 10:18 AM PDT reply actions  

I'm all for getting Chill on the team. I actually thought he was the guy we had signed when we signed Pavlovic (talk about disappointment....)

The kicker, of course, is that it looks like the Hawks are spending everything they have (and quite a bit they don't....) on retaining Joe Johnson. That means, a decent offer to Childress has about a 0% chance of being matched. Find the number that gets him to come back to the States. I'm talking directly to you, Mr. Kahn.

5. Oleksiy Pecherov

Haaaa. Kidding.

5. Kyle Korver

This guy can Shoot. The. Lights. Out. Want to know how well? Last season he shot 53% from downtown. An NBA record by a wide, wide margin.

You want a guy who will run the floor, use the screens, and rain it in from downtown? This is him.

It's no secret that we were a beyond terrible shooting team last season. And we did good work to fix that so far this year. Wes Johnson and Martell Webster can shoot. But Kyle Korver offers a different kind of shooting. Comparing Wes to Korver is similar to comparing Carmelo Anthony to Reggie Miller. Wes shoots like Melo (not as well as Melo, mind you....just like him). Likes to get the ball and face up.

Korver does the vast majority of his work off the ball, finding gaps in the defense, running off screen, trailing on the fastbreak. He's a master at making the defense lose track of him. He's also an extremely high IQ player, a solid defender, and moves the ball well. Great guy to bring in off the bench for some scoring punch.

So that's my list.

Feel free to post yours. Let's find out what Canis Hoops thinks the right direction is this summer.

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