Wednesday , Jan , 28 , 2009 C.Y. Ellis

Blow it up and Start over


Blow it up and Start overBlow it up and Start Over is exactly how it sounds. I’m going to take a look into three NBA teams that I believe need to be dismantled.

It could range from teams who have had success, but their era has run its course. It could be a team that never accomplished anything, though lots expected more.

Either way, the teams below need to handle their business and build for the future.

Washington Wizards

Yeah, I know. It’s way too easy this season to gang up on the Wizards. And you may pull a "Gilbert Arenas is injured" excuse. But does it make a difference? Even with Gilbert, this roster has way too many players who think shoot first.

Solution?

Good luck on this one, but trade Gilbert Arenas. The knee injury and recently signed long term deal may make this a difficult sell. But with all the talent on the Wizards, they need a true point guard who will look to set up others before himself. Guys like Caron Butler, Javale McGee, Nick Young, and Andray Blatche could benefit from a floor general of this characteristic.

Depending on where they will look in the draft, I would definitely listen to offers for Antawn Jamison. The key word being listen. Jamison continues to be one of the most underrated players in the league, even though he averages 21 points and 9 rebounds a night. If Blake Griffin doesn’t find his way to the Verizon Center, and Jamison doesn’t field enough interest around the league, then I’d probably have no choice but to hold on to Jamison and give JaVale McGee more time to develop.

The two guys I wouldn’t trade would be Caron Butler and Nick Young. Butler’s improvement from year to year isn’t a secret anymore, but Nick Young is just one of those players I’ve been fascinated by. When Young gets it going, he can score in a variety of ways. He’s a gifted scorer that I’d like to see average at least 30 minutes a night. He may need to improve his defense, but in extended time he could be a 18-20 ppg scorer.

Phoenix Suns

This one is easy to see from miles away. Steve Kerr seems to have a huge case of denial with the underachieving Suns roster. The sun has clearly set in Phoenix, yet Kerr seems to believe reconstructing an offense around a Shaq in decline will get them much farther in the post season.

Phoenix is going nowhere in the playoffs. Shaq has taken a beating over the years, and won’t be able to hold up during a playoff series.

Steve Nash is slowly on the decline, and playing in a offense that doesn’t placate his abilities.

Amar’e Stoudamire is a disappointment on the defensive end, and not happy with his current role in the Suns new half court offense.

In my opinion, you owe it to the fans to take one more shot in the post season. Odds are, the Suns won’t get far, And they’ll be forced to make choices..

What do you do with Shaquille O’Neal? His contract will be up at the end of the next season. Do you let the deal run out? Do you make calls around the league in hopes of acquiring a package of young players from a team who needs cap space? Remember, if Kerr still had Marion, his contract would be up after this season.

Steve Nash has a team option for next season which I’m sure will be picked up. But Phoenix needs to probe around the league, and the draft for Nash’s replacement. After all, Nash will be a unrestricted free agent for the 2010 off season. If the Knicks don’t find their point guard of the future, don’t be surprised if Nash is lured to the place where he currently lives in the off season.

When it comes to Amar’e Stoudamire, rumors are already floating around about a possible trade before this season’s deadline. You’d have to be mentally insane to trade a 26 year old averaging 21 ppg and 8 rebounds. What if Amar’e goes somewhere else and becomes a player who averages 26 and 11? Phoenix would look pretty bad. I know the defensive efforts need to improve, but with a bunch of core players on the tail end of their career, I think your left with no other options.

Los Angeles Clippers

It’s kind of funny in a messed up sort of way. When the Los Angeles Clippers signed Baron Davis to a 5 year, 65 million dollar deal, they thought they instantly left lottery status. How could you blame them? Especially after watching Davis turn around a gloomy Golden State franchise.

When it became clear Davis and the Warriors were not seeing eye to eye in terms of dollars and years, the Clippers swooped in with hopes of actually competing with a Laker franchise which has always dominated the area.

Things would first go wrong in the off-season shortly after Davis was signed. Davis claimed he and Elton Brand had a verbal commitment to play together in Los Angeles. Brand would sign with Philly, and Davis would say "WTF?"

The season would start and things looked to be all the same for L.A.’s other team.

A 10-34 record does a more than adequate job of telling the story.

It’s been a complete mess for the Clippers. There is no way of getting around it.

When it comes to fixing the problem, you’ve got to look at Baron Davis and Mike Dunleavy. The two have not gotten along, and both should be equally responsible for the losing ways this season.

Dunleavy is said to be on the hot seat, and will most likely be fired. But with that being said, where do you go with guys like Baron Davis, Zach Randolph, Chris Kaman, and Marcus Camby?

I doubt Randolph will be going anywhere but crazier things have happened. I thought it was amazing when Donnie Walsh was able to pawn him off on another team. The odds say Randolph will be a Clipper until he reaches expiring contract status.

Having Zach Randolph in the frontcourt plays a huge part in the Chris Kaman situation. Kaman’s name has been no stranger to trade rumors this season, probably because of having Randolph along side him in the frontcourt.

I would try my best to move Randolph. I’d just hate to be stuck with Zach and have to deal Kaman who is younger and a better defensive presence. Reality says there isn’t enough touches to go around, and Kaman will most likely have to suffer via a trade.

In terms of a educated guess, I’d say the Clippers don’t trade Baron Davis and Marcus Camby. Mike Dunleavy will be fired, and the Clippers will look to a core of Baron Davis, Marcus Camby, Al Thornton, and Eric Gordon. Randolph and Kaman being the question marks going into the next season. Not to mention the high draft pick they’ll receive at the end of the year.

There is too much money invested in this team. And I wouldn’t disagree with a different head coach to steer the ship. Somebody who gets along with Baron Davis.(yes, he has a ego, but what NBA player doesn’t).

Major decisions hang in the balance for the Clippers, but I do like their talent situation for the future.

If you were running one of these clubs, what personnel decisions would you make? Let your thoughts be known in the comments section.