Our 4-headed center monster

Published: February 13, 2011

I wanted to analyze how DJ Aaron Andersmith has performed since Oak went down. I have been less than thrilled with what I have seen from him in these past 7 games, so I crunched some numbers to find out, in the words of H Jon Benjamin, “Does this look as bad as it looks?”

First, in the 7 games without Oak, DJ Aaron Andersmith has averaged 58 minutes per game. 58! That would lead the league, if 4-headed monsters were eligible. To simplify things, I calculated the rest of his numbers per 32 minutes. Why 32 minutes? Because on the year our starters have averaged a tick over 32 minutes per game. 32 it is.

Pts       Reb       Blk       Fouls

10.5      8.1      0.9      4.6

What can we say about this statline?  Well, 8 boards and 1 block per game are rather mediocre averages for a starting center. The scoring isn’t bad… but remember this 7-game stretch includes career games by both Smith and Andersen.

And the fouls? If you project DJ Aaron Andersmith’s fouls per game over an 82 game season, he would come within 9 fouls of Darryl Dawkins’ NBA single-season record of 386.

So how crucial is it that we acquire a legit backup big? Even if Oak comes back soon, and even if both he and West stay healthy the rest of the way, we are going to need about 26-32 minutes per game from bigs not named Okafor or West. 

Good luck Demps!


  1. Hornet

    February 13, 2011 at 4:05 pm

    I agree, we need to be looking at getting another back up big. Gray, though, has been pretty decent.

    As a starter: 27.8 minutes per game, 6.6 points per game, 8.6 rebounds per game, 3.2 PF per game, 56% FG

    Not that bad to me. And his defense has been really good actually. But we definintely can’t be relying on Gray only off the bench. We need someone else.

    • cp3pdx

      February 13, 2011 at 7:11 pm

      Gray has done a few things really well, most notably establishing deep position in the post. I think with his size and strength, and CP3 looking for him under the basket, he might have a 20 point game in him… against the right opponent. I can’t see him playing much in a playoff matchup with dallas or okc.

      • Hornet

        February 13, 2011 at 7:28 pm

        Against those 2 teams I don’t see him doing much but against LA I could see him being useful against Bynum. Maybe he could do something against OKC too (which is who I expect to face in the 1st round). Last time we played OKC, Gray had 7 points, 3/3, 3 rebounds in only 17 minutes. Maybe he can be effective against them and bully them around.

  2. Jeff

    February 13, 2011 at 11:43 pm

    gray’s rebound rate has picked up lately as has West’s.

    On the flip side, Mbenga looked lost trying to battle with Kevin Love for boards.

  3. chiefyoungblood

    February 14, 2011 at 1:41 am

    Aaron Gray gets better the more he plays , I think he may be the type of player who just needs minutes and security to flourish. A season spent being a terrible teams staring center would really do him good or maybe even a bad teams heavy rotation back- up.

    such soft hands , such terrible feet.

  4. L_REAZY

    February 14, 2011 at 7:18 pm

    This really isn’t a weakness … its actually a strength! We We generally have four 7-footers backing up West and Okafor. Name one team that has that?

    Aside from the height and recognizable size, each of them do at least one thing pretty well. Gray; rebounds, Smith; Pick-and-Rolls, Andersen; Pick-and-Pops, & Mbenga; alters shots.

    On any given night one of these guys can be depended on to fulfill an area of need behind Okafor.

    I feel like the one position, the one glaring need that prevents this team from winning games that they should is at the Shooting Guard Position. We need a scorer or a pure ‘open-shot-maker’.

    I suggest the Hornets get Rip Hamilton while he’s still available or cover both the SG & PF/C needs with a trade for Roger Mason Jr. & Anthony Randolph while they’re still available. These are realistic scenarios, because the Hornets will not hit a home run trade for a superstar. Antwann Jamison would be the closest trade to a home run right now.


  5. Mason

    February 16, 2011 at 5:02 pm

    You got his name wrong; you have to call Smith a PF as West’s backup, and that makes our 3-headed monster..err, bunny rabit at center named Darid Grandenga. Flows off the tongue much easier.

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