Posted by: Kingsguru21 | September 7, 2009

Probing Jon Brockman style

I’m really not sure I can squeeze out 50 words about Brockman, and make it worth it. To be honest, I’m not even sure why I wasted 1000+ words on Sergio Rodriguez. But, I did.

I guess the biggest question about Brockman is whether he can defend C’s (I doubt it) without losing a lot in the process. Maybe he can; maybe he can’t. I question whether Brockman’s rebounding will make up for whatever he gives up defensively, and/or offensively. That’s the essential difference between Brockman and Sean May.

Still, Brockman is the type of project that makes sense. Even if he isn’t ideal in the terms of what you want in young rookies for a season, you can invest in him. Or, you can offer him a contract and see what happens. The worst that can happen is you send him down to the NBDL or cut him early on. In financial terms, other than Sean May, there isn’t a higher risk/reward type player on the Kings roster (other than draft picks) who will come cheaper. Taking risks is one way a team gets better. Not every risk pans out, but giving yourself as many opportunities to take advantage of them is the difference between a smart team and a bad one. My hope is that the Kings aren’t squandering the financial end of a deal because the team won’t spend 450 K on a 22 year old kid. (That’s dumb business honestly.)

So why haven’t the Kings offered him a contract? My guess, is they tendered an offer very early in the process, and Brockman didn’t like it. So, he didn’t sign the tender. But, because he’s contractually obligated to stay with the Kings until they make a decision, he’s stuck.

Or, the Kings didn’t offer him a tender contract at all, Brockman became a Free Agent at midnight on the 7th of September.

Works for me either way. (But not really. I just wish the team had signed him already. They’re still only at 12 contracts. Since they must have a minimum of 13, I don’t really get the holdup.) I really believe they’re trying to get a player to compete for that spot, and Brockman is one player who has an inside track. (My dream scenario is that the Kings let Brockman, a player like Rod Benson, and another big compete for 2 spots. That would be really awesome.)

Brockman is a plus rebounder on a team that doesn’t have any, really. In nearly 31 mins, he averaged close to 15 points and 11 1/2 boards a night. That isn’t bad work. If you put his stats at per 36 numbers, he would have gotten 17.3 points a game, and 13.4 boards along with them.

(Only Jason Thompson is a plus rebounder offensively, and it could be that Brockman, Thompson and Evans are the 3 best rebounders on the Kings in 2 years. With Thompson being the worst of the 3. Not a bad haul for two draft’s if you ask me.)

I don’t see why the Kings absolutely have to pass on Brockman given they need to take risks. Brockman needs to improve (as I’ve said many times before and this is rehashing) his inside finishing and interior defense. He needs to develop a 17 footer if he wants to stick in the League for a meaningful career. He needs to play rough & tumble defense, use his 6 fouls, gobble up boards on both ends, set screens, make an ass of himself at every possible moment. Giving the Kings energy and toughness is something he can do.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with using a season where the Kings are likely to be one of the worst 5 teams in the NBA (again) to help develop the young talent and try to give them time to learn. But, Brockman’s development is not at the level of Donte Greene or Omri Casspi yet. (As in it’s critical to the Kings becoming a much better team with regards to Greene or Casspi’s development.) He’s a bonus perk that came along with the Kings getting 2 free salaries paid (as Sam Amick noted in this blog post–the Kings got 2.9 mil from Portland in the June 25th transaction) that essentially means the Kings don’t have to pay Rodriguez or Casspi/Greene’s salary this season. Other than DeJuan Blair, I’m not sure the Kings would have gotten a player in the 2nd round who fits the bill of giving the Kings something they need. And that need is? A garbage pale, hard hat kid who does the dirty work and likes it. Can Brockman do it? Will the Kings sign him?

Stay tuned. I’m not Nostradamus.

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