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Roundtable: What Do the Wizards Do If They Pick 1st?

Amid Caps Fever, and on the heels of a forgettable 19-win season, it's been relatively easy for the Wizards to fall off the radar screen. But with less than 10 days left before a drawing that could drastically alter the franchise's future -- or hardly alter it at all -- Wizards Insider realized it's time to get to speculating. So we assembled a roundtable with four of our favorite Wizards sites to ask the question, "What would the Wizards do with Pick x?" TruthAboutIt.net, Wizards Extreme, Bullets Forever and WizzNutzz join us this week for a look at the possibilities.


The No. 1 pick is an easier decision to make than this dunk. (Photo by Joe Murphy/Getty Images)

Keith McMillan's Take:

We know the Wizards will have a pick no worse than fifth. But there's a pretty big difference between having your choice of prospects at No. 1, and wondering who'll be left at No. 5. For the Wizards, that could be the difference between picking a franchise-changing player or not picking one at all.

Over the course of the week, we'll ask our panel what the Wizards should do with the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th picks, should they get each one. On the 19th, the NBA will hold the drawing that determines which pick the Wizards have, and then we can focus our speculation on a particular draft slot.

If you can't wait until the 19th, you can always try ESPN's draft lottery generator, a tool that predicts how the draft will go based on the available players and the liklihood of teams landing particular draft slots. But if you have grand hopes, beware. I tried it nine times in a row several weeks ago, and the Wizards ended up with Ricky Rubio at No. 2 four times, UNC's Ed Davis -- who is no longer in the draft pool -- at No. 3 four times and Davis at No. 4 once. I did it five times a few days ago, and while the Kings, Grizzlies and Clippers each ended up with the top pick, the Wizards got Rubio at No. 2 three times and James Harden at No. 5 twice. I just ran it once more right now, and it was Hasheem Thabeet at No. 3. (I'm having a hard time getting my mind around Griffin in Kings purple).

But the Wizards need their combination of ping-pong balls to come up only once, and they have a 17.8% chance of getting the top pick. And if they do get it, the dilemma isn't much of one. With a later pick, they might be forced to look at several options; at No. 1, it's draft Oklahoma's Blake Griffin or trade the No. 1 pick for someone who can help the Wizards win now.

The Wizards are one of the only teams in the league not freeing up cap space for the mega-free-agent class of 2010. With team and player options, as many as 10 Wizards are already under contract for 2010-11, including more than $10 million each per season for Caron Butler, Antawn Jamison and Gilbert Arenas. But their salary situation isn't dire two seasons from now -- less than $54 million would be committed to those 10 players. It's next season, with almost $76 million committed to a virtually full roster, that they run the risk of paying the luxury tax. And while it's easy to say because they aren't spending my millions, it seems like a small sacrifice to pay it for one year in exchange for three, six or maybe 10 years of Griffin.

While the fact that Etan Thomas and Mike James will be the Wizards' fourth- and fifth-highest paid players this season if Ernie Grunfeld can't (or won't) trade their expiring contracts is good reason to consider trading the pick, unless the Wizards can get immediate help at the talent level of, say, a Carlos Boozer, it doesn't make much sense to pass on Griffin's potential.

If the Wizards pick 1st, they should: Draft Blake Griffin.
The Wizards' Possible Reasoning: Despite potentially having to pay the luxury tax for a season, Griffin would give the team some more muscle and lineup flexibility, and possibly a fourth scorer in the starting lineup.

Michael Lee's Take: Based on his talent, his ability to contribute right away and the Wizards' need, Blake Griffin is the perfect fit at No. 1 for Washington. Most NBA scouts and league executives have rated this as a one-man draft, and even with the recent addition of Ricky Rubio providing some intrigue, Griffin remains the player most ready to help the moment he steps on the floor.

Griffin would immediately provide the rugged, physical presence the Wizards have lacked for some time. He got knocked around his sophomore season at Oklahoma, with teams unable to stop him otherwise, but he also regularly inflicted punishment on the opposition with his angry-at-the-rim dunks and emotionless, double-double destruction. While he might not develop into a franchise cornerstone, like a Shaq or LeBron or Tim Duncan, he won't have the pressure of carrying the Wizards right away with the team built around the talents of three all-stars in Gilbert Arenas, Caron Butler and Antawn Jamison. He may also benefit from learning the ropes under Jamison before eventually sliding into a starting role.

Griffin's ceiling could be a hybrid of Amare Stoudemire and Carlos Boozer, but he still needs to work on developing a consistent low post move and reliable jump shot. The son of a basketball coach, Griffin already has a good basketball IQ and one skill that usually translates from college to the NBA -- his ability to inhale rebounds. Though Griffin may turn out to be closer to 6-feet-8 than his listed 6-10, his aggressive (some would say reckless) playing style should mesh well with the talent already on the roster. Griffin easily could've been a top 10, possibly top five, pick as a freshman, but his decision to stick around helped him emerge from out of the shadows of Derrick Rose, Michael Beasley, O.J. Mayo and Kevin Love. He served as the face of his university and college basketball overall, never cowering under the immense pressure and scrutiny.

If Washington gets the No. 1 pick, another minor question is if the Wizards give him Michael Jordan's No. 23. Griffin told me that he'd be willing to change numbers out of deference to the player regarded by many as the best to ever play the game. But following Jordan's acrimonious departure, a team source told me that the organization would have no problem giving Griffin the 2-3. We shall see if that becomes a concern.

Coming Tuesday: TruthAboutIt.net on the 2nd pick

By Keith McMillan  |  May 11, 2009; 12:05 PM ET
 | Tags: Blake Griffin, draft, draft lottery, roundtable  
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Comments

Griffin is a no-brainer if the Wiz land the No. 1 pick, but could see EG trading his rights plus a bad contract like Etan's to land a player of the calibre of Carlos Boozer. After the No. 1 pick, I don't see anyone who is going to make the Wizards better in the near future and a trade would be a better scenario if a bad contract (Etan, James) could be shipped off with it to acquire a veteran player.

Posted by: wizfan89 | May 11, 2009 1:05 PM | Report abuse

The no 1 pick could put a team like utah in the conference finals or finals next year. while boozer is a dog in the post and from 15-18 ft., he hasn't been able to carry that team or stay healthy. Utah would easily part with him for blake. that's deron williams team, it's be utah's version of cp3 and tyson/west

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | May 11, 2009 1:16 PM | Report abuse

Boozer is too old. The Wizards need to net a player with good skills that is young enough to be the bridge AFTER the 33 year old Jamison starts to decline.

Boozer in my mind is also not a skilled enough front court player to warrant that kind of trade.

We need better value than Boozer.

Posted by: leopard09 | May 11, 2009 1:20 PM | Report abuse

for sure leo.

I think david lee is a better fit since we have perimeter and interior players already that can score, or at least should be better at scoring with some serious offseason work.

I wish we had a 4 who rebounded, blocked shots, played d, and gave you 10-17 pts off of dunks, putbacks, and the occasional post-up.

Tawn is good in his way, but he shoots from the perimeter too much and leaves the wiz one offensive rebounder down. He's also a liability against legit 4 men on defense. He needs the ball too much for other players to be effective in the offense. maybe saunders will install an offense that gets aj his shots and maximizes the other guys talents.

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | May 11, 2009 1:28 PM | Report abuse

people, how often do you need to be told. etan and mike james no longer have bad contracts since they expire after next season. we dont need to dump them since they instantly free up lots of space after next year (which we need to resign haywood). our bad contracts are now songaila and stevenson (and future jamison).

Posted by: PindarPushkin | May 11, 2009 1:28 PM | Report abuse

The thing with trading the pick and a player for someone like boozer, You'd have to trade a comparable salary, so I'm assuming that the Wiz would either include Thomas and another conctract, or Jamison. But I think for the 1 or 2 pick and Jamison, the Wiz should get more than just Boozer in return. He may be more of a true PF than Jamison, but production-wise, he doesn't bring as much value, and he's really not much of a better defender. On top of all that, he's been very injury prone the last 5 seasons. That combination should bring back someone of the caliber of Chris Bosh.

Not if it's the 1 or 2, and just salaries, I could understand someone at the level of Boozer. But having both Boozer and Jamison on the same team makes little sense, unless Jamison was then used in another trade.

Posted by: segastyle | May 11, 2009 1:31 PM | Report abuse

This comment is predicated on the UNLIKELY chance that the Wizards decide to trade the number one pick to Utah to obtain the rights to Carlos Boozer. The Wizards would still have a winning proposition. Our 2009-2010 front line would be Jamison, Booozer, McGee, Blatche and Haywood. We would have the deepest frontcourt in the league.

Carlos Boozer is only 28 years old. At 6'9" and 266 lbs he would bring the Wiz the low post presence that is sorely lacking.

Posted by: musicmanjr | May 11, 2009 1:41 PM | Report abuse

"Tawn is good in his way, but he shoots from the perimeter too much and leaves the wiz one offensive rebounder down." - lilhollywood10

Jamison was our best offensive rebounder last season, and 10th in the league for PF. Second best on the Wiz the season before that. He may not be a banger, but one thing Jamison has always done, and done well, is grab rebounds.

He does shoot a lot of outside shots, especially for a PF. On our team however, that's not such a bad thing, particularly this past season. He was our second best 3pt shooter (of players who attempted at least 1 per game on average) at 35%. Because our SF spot is weak in the outside shooting department, whether you're talking about Butler or McGuire, and this year we were also inconsistent in the backcourt, we needed his outside touch. Really we need less 3pt shooting from Butler. He should stick more to his slashing and mid-range jumper, which is solid.

Posted by: segastyle | May 11, 2009 1:45 PM | Report abuse

We don't need no stinkin Ricky Rubio,what has he done and who has he done it against?

Posted by: dargregmag | May 11, 2009 1:50 PM | Report abuse

I'd bet the farm on the Wizards not trading the #1 pick if they in fact are lucky enough to win the NBA lottery. The luxury tax penalty would only effect the Wizards this season, as previously mentioned. With the big offseason coming up, the Wizards will have no trouble trading away James and Thomas at the deadline. At the very minimum they should be able to snag a future first round pick, which would probably be best case scenario given the amount of minutes already taken up on the roster.

Posted by: wizfan305 | May 11, 2009 2:12 PM | Report abuse

There's no way the Wizards would trade the #1 pick, certainly not for Boozer. He's a solid player, but he's not the forceful interior presence Griffin could be. He's also got a tendency towards injury and, quite frankly, the Jazz played better when he was hurt and Millsap was filling in for him.

Posted by: kalo_rama | May 11, 2009 2:17 PM | Report abuse

I can see some of Amare in Blake's game, but Boozer? Not a drop.

If I were forced by threat of waterboarding to make comparisons, they'd be as follows:

Blake Griffin: Dwight Howard (but littler)
Ricky Rubio: Chris Paul (not as fast)
Hasheem Thabeet: Dikembe Mutombo (you could do worse)
Jordan Hill: Charlie Villanueva
James Harden: Rodney Stuckey
Brandon Jennings: TJ Ford
Demar DeRozan: Gerald Wallace

Of course, if they really turned out like that, it would be the most successful draft in league history. No, they're not that good. This draft is not, IMO, as good as last year's.

Posted by: Samson151 | May 11, 2009 2:29 PM | Report abuse

Sure would be a nice luxury for Flip to integrate Griffin into the lineup. Would be a huge upgrade over the 6 pt, 5 reb career average from our poet PF.

Posted by: t-train | May 11, 2009 2:36 PM | Report abuse

Griffin for Boozer? No thank you. Boozer is very good. Griffin is unproven. But Griffin is 6 or 7 years younger. We need Griffin's fierce athleticism and interior strength. There are two possibilities: Griffin helps THIS team win now, or is a central part of the rebuild if this team doesn't go anywhere. In either case, give me the young big, not the aging big.

Even in the 2 slot, I think we take Rubio. His upside is enormous. After 2, if we can get an immediate contributor and shed a contract, fine. It will be a disappointment if we are at 3, 4 or 5 in the draft in any case.

Posted by: psdfx | May 11, 2009 3:14 PM | Report abuse

I did the ESPN thing and got Blake 6 out of 10 times tried.

Posted by: slimbo-Rice | May 11, 2009 3:18 PM | Report abuse

BG no questions. Case closed. Period

Posted by: MaxnDC | May 11, 2009 3:26 PM | Report abuse

I'd like to see a picture of Blake next to Carl Landry before I'd say case closed. If he compares favorable with Boozer in height and wingspan then fine, but he doesn't look exceptionally long. And he hasn't been very durable in college which should be a concern for the Wizards.

Posted by: djnnnou | May 11, 2009 4:14 PM | Report abuse

Well I tried the generator about 10 times and only landed Griffin once but got Rubio about 5 times and Harden 2.

Posted by: usiel3 | May 11, 2009 4:24 PM | Report abuse

The previous comparison of James Hardin to Rodney Stuckey doesn't make a lot of sense to me. I know Hardin is often called a "combo guard" but he is the size of a two guard (unlike Stuckey).

All season I have struggled to find a proper comparison for Hardin, because I don't agree with comparing him to Brandon Roy either. I think Roy has shown that he is more athletic and more able to break people down 1on1 than people give him credit for.

Posted by: SportzWiz | May 11, 2009 4:34 PM | Report abuse

Regarding Griffin's durability: He's gotten hurt a few times, but he was never out for long periods. Boozer, on the other hand, has missed 142 games in 7 seasons.

Posted by: kalo_rama | May 11, 2009 4:37 PM | Report abuse

I still don't buy the Thabeet/Mutombo comparison. Thabeet has been shown to wilt when the other guy gets physical with him. Mutombo took a licking and kept on ticking with the best of them. Back when he was with the Sixers playing the Lakers in the Finals, Shaq rearranged his face with a few well-timed elbows and Mutombo never backed down.

Posted by: kalo_rama | May 11, 2009 4:47 PM | Report abuse

Blake Griffin is going to be Barkley. I'd rather have Griffin than Boozer. He's going to be a bear in the middle, C-Web also draws a comparison..

Posted by: frak | May 11, 2009 4:58 PM | Report abuse

A couple of quick points for people who are discussing height.

1) Boozer is barely 6'8" Landry is 6'7"(not much of a difference), that is the main reason that he fell to the 2nd round.

2) I wish the experts on TV would stop talking about how they think that B. Griffin will "most likely" measure out at 6'7" or something. If you watched him both years at OU, you will realize that he actually grew (not just on the team roster). He was the same height as his brother (6'6" or 6'7") as a freshman, but he is clearly taller than Taylor when you watched him play this year. I think that lots of the "experts" didn't get to see him much in person this year. I feel 99% sure that he will measure out taller than Beasley did and I would be shocked if he wasn't taller than Boozer (at least 6'9").

Posted by: SportzWiz | May 11, 2009 5:14 PM | Report abuse

Blake G. #1. Possibly ready to help NOW.

Rubio #2 Would be fun to watch
#3 ?????

Let's hope for 1 or 2.
Wizzies are due for a break.
No one jumps out after #2.
I think there are a bunch of about 10 after Rubio that could go #3.

Posted by: VBFan | May 11, 2009 5:19 PM | Report abuse

If we get the one, we should definitely take Blake Griffin. And, Blake should definitely use Jersey 23. Even though Michael played here that #23 is only sacred for Chicago and Carolina.

But a bit of history. The most famous # way back was #32. Charlie Scott the first black player to play for dem' Tarheels wore #32. That Jersey # was retired at Carolina and Charlie Scott is an all-time great at Carolina. He kinda put Dean Smith on the map so-to-speak.

In comes Michael and the most popular number at that time being #32 he could not have and voila #23 is born.

The rest is history.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | May 11, 2009 5:42 PM | Report abuse

MICHAEL LEE says "...Wizard's need." dictates we take GRIFFIN with the first pick. Although I agree, I have a question? Where's the need? We already have ALL-STAR ANTAWN JAMISON and budding superstar ANDRAY BLATCH at that position. Who needs GRIFFIN.

Posted by: glawrence007 | May 11, 2009 5:43 PM | Report abuse

If the Wizards pick 1st, they should: Draft Blake Griffin.

That's the easy part....

Then they need to trade MJames, AB, and NY to the Pistons for RIP.

PF Griffin
SF CB
C BTH
SG RIP
PG Gil

6th Man AJ

off the bench..

PG Critt
SG DS
PF DSong
C JM

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | May 11, 2009 5:45 PM | Report abuse

There's no way the Wizards would trade the #1 pick, certainly not for Boozer. He's a solid player, but he's not the forceful interior presence Griffin could be. He's also got a tendency towards injury and, quite frankly, the Jazz played better when he was hurt and Millsap was filling in for him.

Posted by: kalo_rama | May 11, 2009 2:17 PM

Agree and one further, I would not trade the the #1 pick for Bosh either. Take Blake with the pick and stand pat. By trade deadline options will become clearer.

But one question, by standing pat, we donot have a slot for our second pick. What do we do with it?

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | May 11, 2009 5:54 PM | Report abuse

MICHAEL LEE says "...Wizard's need." dictates we take GRIFFIN with the first pick. Although I agree, I have a question? Where's the need? We already have ALL-STAR ANTAWN JAMISON and budding superstar ANDRAY BLATCH at that position. Who needs GRIFFIN.

Posted by: glawrence007 | May 11, 2009 5:43 PM
____________________________________

Andray Blatche a budding superstar?? He'll never work hard enough to ever be a star in the NBA... Please, Keep Griffin, who does work hard & trade Blatche if the opportunity presents itself.

They have this thing in the NBA called the sixth man... Griffin easily could come off the bench to provide scoring punch with Young while spelling & giving Jamison/Butler a rest.

Posted by: tony325 | May 11, 2009 5:56 PM | Report abuse

If the Wiz, don't get the #1 pick, can they get it by a trade? For example, Blatche and their pick for the #1 pick?

Posted by: Izman | May 11, 2009 5:57 PM | Report abuse

Hey all,
Appreciate the reaction. I didn't mean for that one remark to be a referendum on how valuable Carlos Boozer is, I just was throwing out the name of the type of established player it would take to get the Wizards to listen to overtures for Pick No. 1.

I also agree with Pushkin, that the contracts of James and Thomas are assets at this point, or awful close to it. If the Wizards are really concerned with getting under the tax cap this year, then they would want to move one of those guys ... and frankly, it might not be all that hard.

Good points.

Glad to hear some of you tried the generator and got Griffin for the Wiz. I didn't get it one time.

Posted by: KeithMcMillan | May 11, 2009 6:05 PM | Report abuse

Just using some hyperbole to generate some posts on the old blog. I certainly don't think AB WILL be a superstar although he could be very good if he applied himself. And I've been complaining all along about JAMISON's bull-fighter defense which sucks. Yeah yeah, he rebounds, he shoots inside and out, he's an ALL-STAR, but you can't have a truely NBA CHAMPIONSHIP TEAM without tough interior defense that the offense can feed off of. And he doesn't bring it. Maybe GRIFFIN will.

Posted by: glawrence007 | May 11, 2009 6:16 PM | Report abuse

Count me in for Blake also. Moves would have to be made though. I guess they could double ticket prices but that wouldn't be good.

Posted by: patrick15 | May 11, 2009 6:21 PM | Report abuse

Gotta get Griffin!!

And yeah I agree SportsWiz I would be very surprised if Griffin is any less than 6-9. The dude played center and was usually the biggest player on the court. I watched alot of his games and he sure looked a legit 6-10 to my eyes. Going up for dunks his head was higher than the rim!

If we don't get him at either 1 or 2 (if Rubio somehow goes 1) then we gotta trade the pick... although I wouldn't mind if they pick up Jordan Hill.

Posted by: Darnell1 | May 11, 2009 6:53 PM | Report abuse

"The previous comparison of James Hardin to Rodney Stuckey doesn't make a lot of sense to me. I know Hardin is often called a "combo guard" but he is the size of a two guard (unlike Stuckey)."

I've got them as about the same size - 6'5" and Harden about 12 lbs. heavier. That not so?

"All season I have struggled to find a proper comparison for Hardin, because I don't agree with comparing him to Brandon Roy either. I think Roy has shown that he is more athletic and more able to break people down 1on1 than people give him credit for."

Oh, definitely, Roy's the better creator. Harden is a fundamentally sound player with out a whole lot of native running/jumping ability. The rationale I had for comparing him to Stuckey is that both are solid players who came into the draft with reasonably NBA-ready games -- something I wouldn't say about most players.

Posted by: Samson151 | May 11, 2009 7:56 PM | Report abuse

kalorama: "I still don't buy the Thabeet/Mutombo comparison."

Yeah, that was pretty weak. They're similar in size and skill coming out of college, however.

Who'd be a better comparison?

Posted by: Samson151 | May 11, 2009 7:58 PM | Report abuse

I suspect Griffin will turn out to be about the same height as Kevin Love -- six-nine and loose change. For some reason Love looked shorter, probably because he's built like a FedEx dropbox. Griffin is so active I'm not sure height makes all that much difference -- it didn't for many of the great rebounders of the past, such as Rodman.

I imagine Thabeet won't be 7'3" when they get around to measuring him, either.

Posted by: Samson151 | May 11, 2009 8:03 PM | Report abuse

"Yeah yeah, he rebounds, he shoots inside and out, he's an ALL-STAR, but you can't have a truely NBA CHAMPIONSHIP TEAM without tough interior defense that the offense can feed off of. And he doesn't bring it."

How often do you find a PF who's a star on both offense and defense? You can count them on your fingers. Jamison wouldn't be one of them.

Posted by: Samson151 | May 11, 2009 8:06 PM | Report abuse

How about the #1 overall pick plus James and Thomas, to Detroit for Rip Hamilton? That would give the Wizards a killer starting five, one that would instantly make them contenders in the East. Griffin will be good, but this teams time to win is now, and Rip would be a perfect fit.

Posted by: Roman5 | May 11, 2009 8:15 PM | Report abuse

tried the draft machine. six straight times I got Rubio at #2. I would rather have Griffin. I love that kid. But Rubio would be OK. After that there are huge question marks. I agree with many previous posts- Griffin for boozer would be a bad trade for the Wiz.

Posted by: chris88 | May 11, 2009 8:15 PM | Report abuse

This is why I like Harden:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H64rKHfSwww

He's very efficient, and his game is built around a really consistent shot. So the lack of jumping doesn't bother me.

Posted by: Samson151 | May 11, 2009 8:22 PM | Report abuse

harden reminds me of mitch richmond, he was plenty good before those air bacon's came out and then of course like any basketball player should after naming their shoes after highly saturated swine, got fat and bounced out of the league

Posted by: bford1kb | May 11, 2009 8:53 PM | Report abuse

"Who'd be a better comparison?"

Someone referred to him as a "poor man's Samuel Dalembert" a while back. That works for me.

Posted by: kalo_rama | May 11, 2009 10:06 PM | Report abuse

At #1 you pick Blake Griffin unless you get an offer for the pick(or a package) that you simply cannot refuse.
At #2 I would take Rubio if Blake goes #1.
At #3 Thabeet would be an interesting choice since he plays defense and blocks shots. The Wiz have a good offense when healthy and having a good shot blocker to pair with McGee for years to come would be nice. We may trade a 3rd overall pick though.

If we get the #4, I would take Jordan Hill based on need but you have to take a look at Harden too.Still, we may trade the #4 overall.
If, Heaven forbid, we get the #5 overall I think you either trade it or go for Hill or Harden, whoever is left.
At #4 or #5 you can't rule out trading down to about the middle of the 1st round or so if you can get a first round pick in 2010 out of the deal.

Posted by: jeremybozz | May 11, 2009 11:48 PM | Report abuse


Harden to Richmond
Thabeet to Tall Sam

Not bad comparisons at all. Both those guys turned out pretty well --

Posted by: Samson151 | May 12, 2009 6:36 AM | Report abuse

Turning out like Dalembert would be fine for Thabeet if he were a mid-first round pick. Turning out like Dalembert if he's taken in the top 3 would make him a massive disappointment, if not a bust.

Posted by: kalo_rama | May 12, 2009 8:58 AM | Report abuse

kalorama: "Turning out like Dalembert would be fine for Thabeet if he were a mid-first round pick. Turning out like Dalembert if he's taken in the top 3 would make him a massive disappointment, if not a bust.Posted by: kalo_rama"

Yes it would, wouldn't it? But there's one important diff between the two: Thabeet's four or five inches taller (if the numbers can be believed).

The question about shot-blockers is how much offense they'll learn to play. Will he be restricted to dunks, or pick up a little jump-hook? Even if he's soft throughout his career, just a bit of scoring can make a real difference to a team.

Posted by: Samson151 | May 12, 2009 9:50 AM | Report abuse

roman: "How about the #1 overall pick plus James and Thomas, to Detroit for Rip Hamilton?"

That's been brought up a number of times here, and some very persuasive arguments made against it. The main being, if I recall, that Gil Arenas isn't Chauncy Billups.

Posted by: Samson151 | May 12, 2009 10:08 AM | Report abuse

Still, you can see Joe Dumars salivating at the very thought of that trade.

Posted by: Samson151 | May 12, 2009 10:11 AM | Report abuse

Samson

I don't think it is fair to compare players from different drafts because you can only select from what is available in a particular draft. Using this logic, nobody is really worthy in this draft to be #1 overall. Blake may be good, but he aint #1 overall good, except in this draft. He ain't Tim Duncan good. He ain't Shaq good or dominant. He ain't Olajuwon good. He is probably better than Kwame though. But Kwame turned out to be not overall #1 worthy either. The thing is, a lot of analysts would have picked Kwame #1 too and said it.

Now the question should be is Thabeet the third best player available or have the potential to be? If you don't think he is, trade the pick. But what do you get for Thabeet? What is he worth? What is he worth packaged with a expiring contract or two? That depends on what you get back. I doubt if you get a significant YOUNG big man.

We have some serious decisions to make.

Posted by: G-Man11 | May 12, 2009 10:15 AM | Report abuse

I don't want Rip. The wizards have enough offense. He won't improve the defense. His career has reached its peak already. Rip would only stunt Nick's growth, a pup. Of note though, Rip was a pup when Michael Jordan the Wiz as a player at the same position. After the first year, Jordan traded the pup and watched him blossom. Nick is our pup now. Jordan would be a lil younger Jordan. Keep the pup, and don't add Rip.

Posted by: G-Man11 | May 12, 2009 10:21 AM | Report abuse

"Not if it's the 1 or 2, and just salaries, I could understand someone at the level of Boozer. But having both Boozer and Jamison on the same team makes little sense, unless Jamison was then used in another trade".

umm how does it make little sense?....Jamison can come off the bench.
But lets just say that we do land the #1 overall pick, the only way you do not get griffin is if: phoenix is knocking at the door with amare stoudamire(and they wanna take blatche and thomas or james)...or dallas is giving up dirk nowvitzki and they are willing to take thomas or james and blatche. phoenix would be more likely but i seriously doubt they would do so. but if you get the #2, maybe a trade with utah wouldnt be so bad. They can get an impact player @2, along with an expiring contract and a forever bench player in blatche, or songalia. Carlos Boozer is an upgrade instantly from what we have and would fit well into our system. the potential line up would be:

1)arenas...
2)butler
3)mcguire
4)boozer
5)haywood

6th man- jamison
7-mcgee
8- j critt
9 young or stevenson...
thats a nice starting 5 that can score well but defend much better than

james
mcguire
butler
jamison
blatche...

Posted by: jasperhneyaolcom | May 12, 2009 10:51 AM | Report abuse

"Yes it would, wouldn't it? But there's one important diff between the two: Thabeet's four or five inches taller (if the numbers can be believed)."

That's really not that important a difference. Taller doesn't equate to being better. Shawn Bradley was 7' 6" but he still sucked. Paul Millsap is a 6' 8" (maybe) 2nd round pick. DeSagana Diop is a 7' lottery pick. Who do you think most coaches, GMs, and players would rather have on their teams?

"Even if he's soft throughout his career, just a bit of scoring can make a real difference to a team. "

Except (A) he has no offensive skills other than dunks and putbacks. He has no real back to the basket game and can't hit a jumpshot. (B) Softness in a guy who's primary role is to provide defensive toughness on the inside is a pretty major problem.

In the NBA he won't have the luxury of just camping out in the lane and swatting shots from 6 foot guards or (on offense) catching spoon-fed passes under the rim while being guarded by guys who are 7 or 8 inches shorter than him. On a nightly basis he'll have to go head-to-head, chest-to-chest with guys who are nearly as tall and (in most cases) stronger and/or quicker and/or more athletic than him. His demonstrated tendency to wilt when facing tough physical matchups in college doesn't bode well for the NBA, where such matchups will be much more frequent.

Can he be a useful NBA role player despite that? Sure. But the odds of him ever panning out to the degree where he'll justify being taken in the top 5 are pretty long, I think.

Posted by: kalo_rama | May 12, 2009 10:54 AM | Report abuse

"That's been brought up a number of times here, and some very persuasive arguments made against it. The main being, if I recall, that Gil Arenas isn't Chauncy Billups."

Posted by: Samson151 | May 12, 2009 10:08 AM

That's part of the argument. The other is that (A) Rip isn't really the kind of SG the Wiz need and (B) he and Flip didn't exactly become best buddies when the two were in Detroit, so importing their old drama into a Wiz locker room that's already got its own issues is a bad idea.

Posted by: kalo_rama | May 12, 2009 10:58 AM | Report abuse

Hey guys be like the Redskins and take the best player with number 1-5. You should get a pretty decent player. Some coaches can develop players better than others. A. Blache, N. Young, Mckee, and Mcquire will develop better under flip than Eddie Jordan. Eddie will still be depending on Juan, Ethan, and Pess. We need a break in all of this. Just pray that the ping pong floats the Wiz way. No trade Eddie.

Posted by: gman1030 | May 12, 2009 11:20 AM | Report abuse

I haven't seen a ton of Griffin, but what I have seen reminds me a bit of Kenyon Martin while in New Jersey, though I think with more potential athletically and mentally.

I can't see how the Wiz would not take Griffin with the first overall pick, unless in an unbelievably great trade.

If we land the second pick, and are looking to trade it, I still think packaging that pick with either Butler or Jamison and some salary could at least entice Toronto into thinking about giving up Bosh, especially if they think there's a chance he won't resign there.

He's a question, and I'm thinking the answer is 'no,' but anyone see any scenario where if Andre Miller does not resign with Philly, the number 2 pick, Butler, and something else could land us Igoudala? He can provide the same offense that Butler has, brings a ton more defense, and fills a huge whole at the starting 2 spot. I think a lineup of Arenas, Igoudala, McGuire, Jamison, Haywood with Crittenton, Young, Blatche, McGee off the bench could do some serious damage.

Wishful thinking, no doubt.

Posted by: segastyle | May 12, 2009 11:27 AM | Report abuse

Is Iggy reall worth trading the number two pick and an "all-star" within the conference?

I can see caron, rubio, elton, sam, and lou will or dre mill doing a lot next year in philly while mcguire and iggy fight for playing time. Mcguire was a brightspot last year, if he keeps improving he should be rewarded.

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | May 12, 2009 11:56 AM | Report abuse

If Thabeet stays healthy, I see him somewhere between Dalembert and Mutombo in terms of on the court performance.

He'll probably never be top 5 at his position, and odds are he won't be a defensive player of the year ever.

But in a couple years it's not hard to see him as viable NBA center. I could see a team like OKC giving him serious consideration if they pick in the middle of the lottery.

For the Wizards though, they need insurance at PG and at PF/C from someone who can contribute in the near-term. That isn't Thabeet.

Posted by: JPRS | May 12, 2009 11:59 AM | Report abuse

There's no way Philly is trading Iguodala for anything the Wiz have to offer. He's on the verge of top-tier stardom. Losing Miller would be a hit for Philly, but not even close to the kind that would cause them to blow up the team and start over, which is what trading Iguodala would amount to.

"I can see caron, rubio, elton, sam, and lou will or dre mill doing a lot next year in philly while mcguire and iggy fight for playing time. "

That's ridiculous. Iguodala would immediately become the best player on the Wizards, Arenas included.

Posted by: kalo_rama | May 12, 2009 12:13 PM | Report abuse

I already know what 99.9% of the people are going to say, " Are you buggin'? Did you watch any college basketball this year? How can you not take Griffin?"

To answer... "NO!... YES!... And ,because we want to win a championship now."

Blake Griffin is a good college basketball player. He was a man among boys, but that is my point... he will be playing with other men next year. He has no jumper (it will develop???), he is 6'10 on the college scale (6'8 is the NBA translation), and most importantly, WE ALREADY HAVE ENOUGH PLAYERS TO DEVELOP!

If the Wiz get the #1 pick they should use it for a QUALITY vet and a later 1st round pick (Jordan Hill, James Harden, Tyreke Evans, Stephen Curry, Gerald Henderson, Jeff Teague, Eric Manor, etc. all have just as much, if not more, chance of being great NBA players down the road as Griffin)

Ex: send the pick to the Bucks for Bell or Ridnour and their lotto pick [may have to add a player] or send the pick and James to Minnie for Mike Miller and their lotto pick... just 2 of many possibilities

The point is not to get hung-up on Griffin. He is not LeBron James and with all due respect, will not be... We want to win now (according to Abe Pollin) and Griffin will not significantly make that happen next year or the following one.

WE NEED HELP NOW!

Posted by: fishin41 | May 12, 2009 1:31 PM | Report abuse

Here is what is apparent -- Bullets Suck!!

Posted by: jwing14 | May 12, 2009 1:50 PM | Report abuse

Did I read the quote correctly that Griffin wouldn't be under pressure to step in immediately and contribute? Coming off a 19 win season, the Wizards are DESPERATE for someone to step in immediately and have a big impact. Sheesh...

Posted by: randysbailin | May 12, 2009 5:01 PM | Report abuse

AJ is a flat out great player that goes unappreciated here in DC. I know he is a below average defender but his contribution offensively, very good rebounding skills and his leadership are needed here. With Brendan healthy, Antwan's defensive liability is effectively improved to the degree that his scoring and rebounding production is even more valuable. AJ is a Class Act who can BALL. He is showing no signs of slowing down and in fact has improved.
DC, give AJ his due respect and stop looking to find another home for him elsewhere via all these hypothetical trades. AJ belongs here!

Posted by: jshavatt | May 12, 2009 7:32 PM | Report abuse

No need to involve butler in any trade to send him with the 1st pick unless that player is wade or james or kobe.
In this difficult economic time the wiz are in best shape to land a highly contributing vet. before the trade season is over.There is no need to rush in a trade that involve james and thomas.Any of the 5 possible picks need not be send some where with thomas and jamers, unless the purpose of the trade is just to stay under the salary cup.The new coache has to examine all videos of the last two years about the three young players and need to make a request to part those who can not fit top his system.The focus of the trade should be to part with sangalia,jamison or stevenson. 1st pick and jamison for bosh, no other avaliable star need to have the value to take Blake.I will take players like boozer,rip hamilton, David lee or joe johnson in a trade that involve the second pick with out jamison. No room for players like AI from 76ers.

Posted by: gtefferra | May 12, 2009 7:51 PM | Report abuse

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