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Offseason approach for free agency and draft

Published: March 28, 2011


The New Orleans Hornets need to focus on gaining another center and a stretch forward during free agency and gain some guard play in the draft. The players that look to be good fits for the free agency category would be Jeff Green and Greg Oden.

First, Jeff Green made his reputation felt in OKC when he came in and played his role correctly to the tune of averaging about 15 points a game as well as collecting about 5 rebounds per game.

This would be a good pick up because he has the ability to play the SG, SF or PF at any point in games and the hornets need that kind of versatility. Also, he is a strong player so he can play defense and score against anyone and will not get roughed up so this is priority number one.

Now, most people who read this are probably wondering why I would put Oden in the mix for players the hornets need to get. Here are a couple reasons why the Hornets need to give Oden a chance.

1. He is athletic

We all remember the years when CP3 was throwing alley-oops to Tyson Chandler like it was nothing, as well as being able to get over other centers to get many tip out rebounds that Chandler used to get, well here is a player who is athletic enough to be able to fit into that mold because Okafor, too short and not nearly athletic enough to do that as much as Chandler has and it has shown, and Gray, no where near the athletic stand point, are both not near the skill set that Chandler was for the Hornets.

2. He can play defense

Again, another Chandler comparison, Chandler was a great shot blocker for the Hornets and would be able to change opponent’s shots with ease as well as cleaning the defensive boards because the games against the Lakers have proven that Okafor cannot compete with on the defensive end.

I’m not expecting Oden to be a great scorer, if you notice on these reasons, they are fundamental things that great centers of this generation have. Look at Chandler now with the Mavs, Howard with the Magic, Garnett with the Celtics and list goes on. This would be just a try and see type deal because he has the skill set, just has not been able to play due to injury so if the Hornets sign him, it would probably be a one-year contract with a team option for the second season if he performs well.

Next, the hornets need to get a consistent shooter in the NBA draft. Nothing against Marco and Willie, but they are very inconsistent when it comes to their shooting. They both have three or four game stretches of amazing shooting then they cool off for the next few. I can see the hornets eyeing Doron Lamb of UK or Josh Selby of KU to fill that need. The Hornets should resign Willie for his defensive ability and Marco for depth on the bench or at least an invitation to training camp to see if he cannot earn his spot.

The Hornets would go ahead and resign Landry and hope to see West accept his player option. The Hornets would let go Banks for sure and probably give training camp invites to Mbenga and Smith. Remember David Anderson is under contract still through next year.

This is how the roster would look for next year for the first game (Notice I did not give Mbenga or Smith a spot).

PG: Paul/Jack

SG: Draftee/W. Green/Belinelli

SF: Ariza/ J. Green/ Pondexter

PF: West/Landry/Anderson

C: Okafor/Oden/Gray


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