Monday, March 19, 2007

Stars Could Do In Pistons

I have been going on the assumption the Pistons are - easily - the best team in the Eastern Conference. I have had the full expectation the Pistons are clearly better than both Cleveland and Miami and will be reach the Eastern Conference finals without much trouble. Now I am having some doubts as the season moves on and teams start getting ready for the playoffs. It’s weird, but Miami losing Dwyane Wade has only somehow made the Heat stronger. I know Wade is a great force, but they have played extremely well without him and Jason Kapono - the best shooter for the Heat. The loss to Orlando aside, it seems Shaquille O’Neal has something to prove and is proving it. Cleveland has played a lot of home games lately, so their recent winning streak is understandable from that point. And the Cavaliers are still lacking in certain areas, but LeBron James is eventually going to lead his team to championships. He is capable of being an incredible playoff force, and it may apply itself this year. The Bulls are still there and solid, yet lack the big star. I can’t help but fall into the trap of the star system in the NBA. I always like a team in the playoffs that has that one big star. I know the Pistons have shattered the mold in recent years, and I know their starting five is formidable and I feel Chauncey Billups, in particular, is a star. Yet, somehow, I still feel the Pistons will be vulnerable to opposing star players come the postseason.

Random Thoughts

- I am surprised Jim Leyland named Jeremy Bonderman opening day starter. It seems out of line considering both Justin Verlander and Kenny Rogers were better pitchers last season than Bonderman. I am not sure if Bonderman earned the honor nor if he is the staff ace. It is still more about potential than reality with Bonderman.

- I know he has won a national championship, but this was, nonetheless, Tom Izzo’s best coaching job. I was in Winston-Salem Saturday night sitting courtside. If you all saw what I did, up close like that, you’d know just how much that game should have been a blowout. North Carolina was so much more talented. Yet, the Spartans were in that game. That speaks volumes for Izzo. Watch out for the Spartans next season when this group of players blends with an outstanding recruiting class. It should be dynamite.

- Tyler Hansbrough is an unrelenting force, but I am not so sure how his game will translate to the NBA. He is much bigger and stronger than college inside players. That won’t be the case in the NBA.

6 Comments:

Blogger Eric Chase said...

Hansbrough's game MAY translate like David Lee of the Knicks. Neither are very athletically gifted but both have relentless energy. Rebounding is not about size or position, it's about desire and Lee has shown that his can translate into a double double, which no draftnik could've ever fathomed when he came out of UF

4:16 PM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

Eric Chase,
I don't agree with you about Lee. He is extremely athletic. He won the slam dunk contest at the MacDonalds All-American game while in high school and runs the floor very well. He is actually an exceptional athlete. That,coupled with the desire you mention is why he can rebound like that at that size.
Hansbrough is much bigger and more physical. He is extremely strong. He runs well, has extraordinary hands and a soft touch But in the NBA, I don't know if he will be able to push people out of the way like he does in college. It'd be interesting to see how big he is in comparison to NBA players.
Caputo

4:31 PM 
Blogger ThinkingMan said...

I don't think Hansbrough will be a star in the NBA. But, based on what I've seen, I think he'll be solid. As you said, he's not just a banger ... he's got talent and his range looks like its pretty good up to 12-15 feet. If he continues to improve his outside shot, I think he will be effective in the NBA.

I have to disagree with you about Bondo. Yes, he has been more potential than anything thus far. But I think this is the year he turns into the horse. I look for him to win 16-20 games and post a sub 4.00 ERA.

4:53 PM 
Blogger Eric Chase said...

According to the NBA player card (for Lee) and ESPN bio (for TH) they're nearly identical in height and weight, and to my naked eye, their body types look pretty similar.

Outside of the beginning of last year when TH first burst on to the national scene, I don't think anyone has predicted that he would be a top notch NBA player. Expectations for his pro career have leveled off and rightly so.

As a Sixers fan I'd love to see them get Al Horford and add his toughness to balance out the finesse weak side play of Dalembert. And if TH was available with their other late first round pick, I wouldn't mind having him on my team for a burst of energy, to grab a few boards a commit a couple fouls

7:38 PM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

Thinkingman,
As you know, I agree that Bonderman's potential is higher than even Verlander's, but he hasn't done it yet. It's just I feel opening day starts should be a reward.
Caputo

1:33 AM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

Eric Chase,
Hansbrough has a lot more bulk and Lee jumps a lot better than he does. Hanbrough has better touch. Lee runs the floor better.
Caputo

1:33 AM 

Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home