Who needs the off-season of 2010?

Published: May 1, 2011

As we all know, the 2010 Free-agency was the most-action packed free-agency in history. LeBron permanently destroyed his reputation to join Bosh and Wade in Miami. Carlos Boozer went to Chicago. Amar’e decided he had had enough sun and went to the Big Apple. We saw Teams overpay players drastically. (coughTorontocough)

Then there’s the 2010 off-season that saw every team except the Hornets make trades for cap space for those free-agents. The Hornets were the only one who made trades that didn’t primarily involve courting to LeEgo. (Even though they had a better chance than at least two of teams: New York and New Jersey. Kudos CP3). When Carmelo demanded a trade, if New Orleans had been on his list of destinations, I’m sure Dell would have gladly dealed Marcus, Peja, and perhaps Quincy to Denver in exchange for Carmelo, and some bits of pieces like draft picks, and 3rd string centers, and a little bit of money. 

But this is the free-agency of 2011, with Tyson Chandler, Marcus Thornton, and Greg Oden, Tayshaun Prince, and Vince Carter. Teams wasted all their money in 2010. Now the Hornets are the best available option on the block, because playing with a team that pushed the Lakers to 6 games with their two most important bigs non-existent. (David West and Emeka Okafor.) Now with those two going to be a factor in the next year’s playoffs. You’re salviating if you are a shooting guard with any sort of decency on the court and off the court.  

They may even own the off-season of 2012 if they play it right. The off-season of Dwight Howard and Deron Williams basically. The Hornets are the only team with any sort of decency for the next two off-seasons that can offer a nice contract and can even improve, combine that will Dealer Dell Demps, and the Lakers, Spurs, and Mavericks will be hollow shells of what they were during this season, courtesy of age. 

The West will come down between New Orleans and Oklahoma City. (Sorry Memphis and Portland, I just don’t think you can keep your lightning in a bottle until the start of the 2013 season.) Oklahoma City doesn’t have a cap manuverability that the Hornets have. Also the Hornets have the money-savy front office, now add an owner whose actually willing to go over the luxury tax to win. (Gary Chouest.) What do you get? 

Prime Free-Agents for 2011: (in order of importance)

Marcus Thornton

Tyson Chandler

Greg Oden

Caron Butler

Tayshaun Prince


Free-Agents of 2012:

Dwight Howard

Deron Williams


So if the Hornets play this correctly, their front-court rotation could be so packed,  that somebody out of West, Ariza and Thornton has to come off the bench. (Thornton) West would have to move to SF and Ariza to SG or DWest would have to come off the bench. (Okafor definitely would too.) 

Paul         Jack

Ariza        Thornton



Howard     Okafor





Chandler   West

Howard     Okafor


Looks pretty nice, right? 

How to do it:

Don’t overspend in 2011

Unless it’s Chandler or Marcus, employ the Ben Gordon method. (This is what Ben Gordon should have done after 2009). It’s a 1 year contract, but that 1 year is a nice fat 1 year around 5-7 million. [Note: the Bulls should have given Gordon a 10 million 1-year contract in the 2009 off-season. It meant he could have joined the 2010 Free-Agency Class.]

#2 Have CP3 appeal to Dwight Howard. Pointing out all the benefits that would be gained from teaming up with Paul, West, Okafor, Ariza, and possibly Chandler, and the fact that Howard is the 2 (or is it 3)-time defending Defensive Player of the Year, and that he would be perfect for Monty’s system of Defense. Also don’t forget about the constant-alley-oops. (Howard could even throw them, if he was in the mood to Chris Paul.)

#3 Remember to tell the free-agents that the West is theirs for the taking this season.


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