In Pt 2 we'll be reviewing every player......
Was our big "local" recruit for the season and looked good early on, showing good shooting range and rebounding from the SF spot. Suffered a foot injury at some stage in December, which affected his play but to what extent is unknown. Started to draw criticism for the excess minutes he received even in games where he struggled. Had plenty of games with high turnovers and poor shooting % but there's enough there for the team to build on. I think there are comparisons to be made with "The Cat" and expect in 2 seasons he'll be one of the league's stars. Must work on his defensive game especially and his passing.
Bring Back? Yep ( I think he's under contract anyway with a player option)
Back in uniform after missing the previous year with an ACL injury. An elite defender but his shot was MIA for most of the season. Needs to be cut some slack for the fact he's returning from a serious injury plus he didn't have a clear role. I liked him as a legit 6th man but some games he was 1st of the bench, others the 4th or 5th. Some games he got a couple of minutes, others 25.
Bring Back? Yep
Saw hardly any action and was purely used in junk time or for brief spells to rest Warren. Some think he's the next Brett Maher, others think he hasn't got it. Has shown some smarts at times but has also been exposed for his size.
Bring Back? I'd prefer to see him have a big season in the SEABL and review for 2013-2014. May keep as the local development player.
Had a few huge games later in the year but struggled early. Still one of the most dangerous scorers in the league when he's on. Like Herbert, struggled with not knowing when he'd be on and for how long. A liability on D at times but has a knack for coming up with steals and deflections.
Bring Back? Yep. A crowd favourite, low cost, key role player
Proved useful on the giants of the league (Schensch, Khazzouh etc), giving the opposition plenty to think about before entering the key. Set some bone crunching screens and made some hard fouls. Offense was very up and down. Rebounding not what it should be for a player his size. By all accounts a popular member of the team and knows his role.
Bring Back: If he's cheap, yes. 36ers need a big body to backup DJ.
Was brought in to be the PG but it was soon discovered he's better at SG. This threw out team balance and the team was forced to reshuffle, never finding a good rotation. When Crosswell went down he struggled mightily. In the last third of the year he showed some better signs with a larger effort to get to the basket and some better passing (and less trunovers). He probably has a large upside but his size and leadership are cause for concern. No coincidence 3 of the 4 finals teams have veteran, US point guards.
Bring Back: No. We need to go for a 28-30yr old import with size,leadership and a sound defensive game.
Didn't see much of him and very hard to make an assessment.
Bring Back: Only as the local development player
League's most improved and probably one of the most well rounded scorers. I'd expect he'll work on his post game in the offseason and work on his strength. I've got questions over his demeanour and intensity but he's made big strides and is still learning how to play. His defense is his major weakness and this must be worked on in the offseason. The team needs to surround him with some big bodies.
Bring Back: I love his skills set and the improvement made but he's still a work in progress in several areas. Team must make him it's focal point and surround him with the right players.
Was brought in for spot backup minutes, soon become clear he was our best PG. Has limitations but is a great passer and smart player. Is under contract and coming back from injury so must be slotted back into a backup role off the bench.
Bring Back: Yes
Love his work ethic, passion and energy. His shot needs some work but he's got all the other tools. Needs more minutes and should get some of Weigh's minutes and some at SG.
Bring Back: Yes
An energy player who tries to make things happen. Shot developed over the season and the team worked better with him and Warren as the starting backcourt.
Bring Back: Probably not, only because of roster spots
An elite rebounder and strong low post player. No shot from beyond 10ft (including free throws). Came in underdone and I'd imagine if he came in fully fit and was getting 32-35 minutes a game he'd be a regular 18/12 guy.
Bring Back: Yes
From team MVP to bench man to injury list. A tough year for "Balls". Coming back from injury he'd probably have to accept a 6th man role and although the pieces don't fit brilliantly together, if he's coming off your bench you've got to be a solid team.
Bring Back: Yes
So that gives us............
Bench- Herbert, Crosswell, Ng, Helliwell, Ballinger
"Hang on" you're probably thinking, "that's 9 players from this year's team back, how do they take us to the playoffs?". Good question.
1) Balls and Crossy missed a large chuck of the season. That helps.
2) Weigh will improve and be injury free
3) Simpson will be fitter and better for a year in the league
4) DJ should continue to develop
5) Creek is only 20 and I'm expecting him to continue to grow. In that lineup all he needs to do is get out and run and take the opposition's best scorer.
6) A pass-first, defensive minded PG would be a much better fit for this roster. Imagine a true point looking to run the break, feed the big men outside and give Ng some good looks. Excited?
7) That bench should have clear roles...
Herbert- splits time with Creek and Weigh. On with Creek at times for pressure D
Crosswell- pure backup for the import
Ng- comes on when the offense is dried up and as a zone breaker
Helliwell- plays only against the giants or to spell DJ
Ballinger- splits time at the 4 & 5 mainly. A focal point on offense for the 2nd unit.
8) If "Balls" returns to his best I don't mind Diamon coming off the bench, would be super effective in that role if need be.
What do you think?
Tomorrow: Pt 3- The Coaches, The Game Plan and The Management