Some people unloaded Jason Richardson after he underwent exploratory arthroscopic surgery last month. Those same people were probably worried about his health. Richardson proved that he is well and returned to action as a slightly improved fantasy asset.
Now with Jason Richardson plus some fillers (a second round pick and Jared Dudley), being traded to the Phoenix Suns in exchange for – uh a bunch of fillers – Raja Bell, Boris Diaw, and Sean Singeltary; those same people who unloaded him wish they had him back.
Phoenix Suns – They get to boost Amare Stoudemire’s waning morale and keep him just that little bit happier, motivated and hopefully more productive. Sadly I disagree that adding Jason Richardson is the key to the Suns’ road to redemption. REMOVING Steve Kerr from management is still the solution. But this trade does soften the ill-timed “Shaq-Marion trade FUBAR”. We’ll see if he can make some more improvements.
Jason Richardson – It’s not as if he wasn’t a big enough scorer over at Charlotte. Now with Steve Nash handing him the ball on a silver platter, expect him to light up the scoreboard from pretty much everywhere on the basketball court. Expect scoring to go up slightly but more importantly expect his FG% to be better and more stable. Of course treys, those wonderful treys; MORE, MORE and MORE of them over at Phoenix. He should be able to get back to or even exceed last year’s averages in that category.
DJ Augustin, Gerald Wallace and Emeka Okafor – After J-Rich’s departure, these guys will have to really make it a team effort to compensate for the scoring void left behind.
Boris Diaw – I wouldn’t be surprised to see him inserted into the starting lineup right away alonside Raja Bell. He will be able to provide flexibility and some much needed court savvy. That’s what I would prefer. Somehow it’s more likely to see him and DJ Augustin come off the bench as offensive sparks. Who knows? I didn’t expect the Bobcats to trade J-Rich away.
Jared Dudley - He will see some time on the court. He will get that fantasy Nash-factor bump. Impact to his value may be minimal, but still keep your eye on him in deep leagues.
Charlotte Bobcats – Well good luck on your rebuilding plans. Let’s leave it at that.
Leandro Barbosa – He will now rarely see the light of day. Well not exactly. He will still get to relieve Steve Nash every now and again. But expect his scoring and treys to dip.
Phoenix Suns – They still have Shaq. Well to be fair, he’s really just there for his contract to expire, but a snidely remark about him and his occasional presence in the Phoenix lineup couldn’t be helped.
Raja Bell - He was not known for his scoring before. But now he will be feeling the biggest pinch of missing an elite passing PG finding him open on the wings for the trey.
Sean Singletary – Who? My point exactly. Don’t ask. Never you mind. Move along now.
This is one competitive bunch of drafting freaks! You’ve got a whole buffet of assorted strategies banging around in the paint (draft pool). These guys are tenacious. I’ve even got my own faves: Jeff’s team and SA Spurscasters. Looking sharp there boys. Some teams are coming around nicely, others not so much. I suppose there are mixed feelings from the drafters at this point. Some guys wished this was a real league so they can see their strategies come to fruition, while others are probably wishing they could do over certain picks and are glad that it’s just a mock draft. For the guys who fall into the latter category, fret not fellow drafters! My first round pick, Allen Iverson, probably put it best:
It Ain’t a Game, It’s Just Practice!
I’d like to thank some of the other drafters for chiming in with their comments. I appreciate the interaction, keep it up. I must admit that I’m learning a lot as I find myself having my fair share of “Doh! I wanted him!” moments – I found myself saying it a lot especially in this round .
Well my life in the blogosphere has been up and running for about 3 weeks now and I must say I’ve been having a blast! It’s taken some hard work, but I’m happy to say that writing about Fantasy Basketball has been a good training camp for my writing and hopefully soon, my Fantasy Basketball career as well. At this point, I’d like to thank my wife, Annie, for patiently contributing some of her time to help edit my posts! In the process of blog networking, I’ve been invited to be a contributor in the HoopStar BLOG, where I will be posting my thoughts on Fantasy Basketball every other week or so. Anyway on to the post . . .
It all started with Andrei Kirilenko posting in a Russian blog that he was not too happy to be returning to play for the Utah Jazz this year. When the dust of this initial rumor settled down and revealed a true sentiment held by the Russian Superstar, the Jazz front desk quickly came out and expressed interest in working things out and keeping their “best” defensive player (read more from ESPN). The latest update in this ongoing situation is that AK is intent on leaving the Jazz, citing how he feels he will be returning to another unhappy season. I think it speaks volumes that he’s willing to forsake the remaining $63M of his contract just to find a different place to play basketball. He wants a fresh start to rekindle his love for the game which was already sparked by his inspired performance at the EURO Basketball Championships, where he led his Mother Russia all the way to the top of the podium. He says he’s even ready to play in Europe, if that’s what it takes to get away from playing in Utah. Frankly I don’t see this happening because if the Utah management decides to acquiesce and let go of AK, there are a lot of NBA teams that I feel should jump at the opportunity to snag this defensive workhorse! In spite of Jerry Sloan‘s preference to to keep AK in Utah, the franchise does have some options open to it (read TrueHoop). The trade scenario that I’d most like to see come to fruition is the Phoenix Suns deal where we can potentially see AK and Jarron Collins or perhaps Paul Millsap go to the Suns for Shawn Marion. Now that would be an interesting change for both teams concerned. I feel that the passion by which AK is expressing his disappointment leaves the Jazz with only 2 clear choices. Either let him go (trade, buy-out, or whatever) or let Jerry Sloan, who seems to be at the root of AK’s unhappiness, go. I’m not holding my breath to see the latter happen because Jerry’s practically a Jazz institution, coaching the team since he inherited the head coaching job from Frank Layden in 1988. It’s not all too rare to see a star player and a team’s coach not get along. If both of these guys were getting a divorce, the documents would have a check mark on the box that cited irreconcilable differences. . . It happens.