September 2, 2007
Yesterday at ESPN, Chris Sheridan wrote about team USA’s success and went on to evaluate each player’s contribution in a grade format. Of course it’s easy to give Carmelo, Kobe and LeBron an A, A+ and A respectively. Those guys are on any school’s honour roll (although I would argue Kobe should just as likely have an A+ too). The grades that surprised me and I disagree with are specifically Tyson Chandler, Tayshaun Prince, and Michael Redd. Starting with Chandler, Sheridan gave him a B. This is unfair because the role he was set out to play, he played unbelievably! He wasn’t chosen to be the starting centre and put up those numbers. He was chosen to be a solid defensive specialist and be a rebounding machine. He accomplished all of this, and blocked 14 shots in total! In we’re evaluation his contribution based on what he was supposed to do, I give him an A! Next, Tayshaun Prince. Sheridan gave this guy a B. I was so happy when the team added this guy in the first place. The team chose him because every team needs role players like himself. They didn’t need him to come in and score points at all, but rather do everything else (ie: rebound, play defense,etc). Although his shooting percentage was down, he was one of the team’s leading rebouders! I remember catching that he had something around 12 rebounds one game! This guy should get more credit for job he did well that he was supposed to do. I’d give him an A-. Finally, we have Michael Redd. Sheridan gave him a B+. Unlike Chandler and Prince, Redd was brought in for instant scoring. The last time I checked, he average 15.4 point on a team where the scoring was so spread. This is impressive! Although that average would be mediocre in the NBA, this is significant for a bench guy in international play. His job was to score, and he was reliable in this position. He deserves and A!
Of course, anyone and everyone could argue a half grade here and there, but I was taken back by Sheridan’s harsh grading. I know he’s a teacher in school I would NOT want.
August 18, 2007
The Detroit Pistons have signed backup guard/forward Jarvis Hayes. With the intention of having him as a backup to Tayshaun Prince, Hayes has a career average of about nine points per game, according to his website (www.jarvishayes.net). Will JH’s nine points per game be enough to provide a confident Flip Saunders with reason to have some serious confidence in his bench? Well, if you look at who was backing up Prince before, Carlos Delfino average 3.6 points per game last season, which was his best yet. The worst part about Delfino was he was incredibly inconsistent. Getting rid of him was a wise move on Joe Dumar’s end. I feel with Hayes, the Pistons will finally have some consistent backup on the bench. Combining Hayes and some of the talented rookies, and of course McDyess, the Pistons are in good shape for another title run.