The Grand National Championships

June 16, 2008

The Combo Guards are waiting for another year…

Sure, Tiger has disappointed the masses for his 14th major. But you know what? I’m moving on. Freaking Cyborg’s got to beat some unlikable dude for me to care about him…

But why are we here? Because people are making a return to the innocent halcyon fields of the college ballcourt. And you know how we are going to do this? We’re going to play a game of Combo Guard*, White Guy, or Moment of Clarity!

The rules of breakdown are simple. These players are either combo guards/tweeners, white dudes, or people who have found their moment of clarity.

A.J. Abrams, Texas: Combo Guard. At 5’11” and being the tag team partner of D.J. Augustin, he does have solid catch and shoot skills, but let’s be honest. He’s a 5’11” 2-Guard. He needed to come back.
Antonio Anderson, Memphis: Moment of Clarity. While Anderson does have some solid distributive magic with his 6’6″ height. But his shooting is bad, his defense is inconsistent, and he’s going back to Memphis as a starter. This is a decision that could make him millions.
Chase Budinger, Arizona: Combo Tweener. He has good athleticism, he has good catch and shoot abilities. He can finish. But there are days, weeks, and months where he offensively disappears. That and he can’t defend 2’s, let alone 3’s.


Also? He looks right retarded. Admit it.
Lee Cummard, Brigham Young: White Guy. A mad scientist could intersperse DNA of him and Budinger and clone themselves the white George Gervin.
DeMarre Carroll, Missouri: Moment of Clarity. While he is still taking his Flinstones Chewable vitamins, and he is with the upside, he was hurt last year. He needed more time.
Josh Carter, Texas A&M: White Guy. Even if he’s really not a white guy? His game is two steps and no handles. He’s a deadly standstill shooter and a high-effort defender. Another year may not help, but it couldn’t hurt.
Robert Dozier, Memphis: Moment of Clarity. There is something to be said for the skinny 4 who’s athletic enough to play the three. And when Dozier is hot, he is the Matrix Reloaded. But like the sequel, his focus can be fuzzy and his mid-range game is as annoying as that goddamn rave scene. Also? Don’t hit women Robert Dozier.
Wayne Ellington, North Carolina: White Guy. His shot is sexy. He has a decent ability to create an opening for his shot. The problem? No handles, no athleticism, and no toughness. He is your prototypical white guy stereotype.
Alonzo Gee, Alabama: Moment of Clarity. His athletic ability is off the hook. But his game is tartar levels of raw. He had all eyes on him from the wing this season, and his shot fell off. Nobody was even gonna look at him in Round 2 this season.
Danny Green, North Carolina: Moment of Clarity. I don’t say this as a reason to hate, but the fact of the matter is, he has a chance to really improve his draft stock. He developed decent handles and a good shot to go with his athleticism and his shut-down defense. If he can consolidate his offensive game? He’s a 2009 first rounder.
Lester Hudson, Tennessee-Martin: Combo Guard. Lester’s got a story and an ability to put the biscuit in the basket to rival Steffen Curry. His athleticism is not great. He’s 6’1″ and his handles and creativity aren’t great. Even so? He has freakishly long arms (ZOMG 6’9.5″ WINGSPAN LOL) and upside. If he learns how to play on more than instinct? Look out.
Stefon Jackson, Texas-El Paso: Moment of Clarity. Now I honestly don’t know why this cat isn’t better hyped. He is one of the best pure scorers from inside the arc. His slashing game is awesome and his handles are tight. Put it this way? He doesn’t need a 3-point shot to win the dance, but he’s Michael Redd 2.0 if he develops it. (He can defend you know?)  
Ty Lawson, North Carolina: Moment of Clarity. All he needs is a healthy, non-criminally active season and he’s a lottery pick. It’s worth about 3 million dollars to him if he does.
Leo Lyons, Missouri: Moment of Clarity. On offense, when he’s got the ball facing the basket? He’s a force of nature. The problem? He is pretty useless everywhere else. He needs to get the stew of his game going.
Jerel McNeal, Marquette: Combo Guard. He is a lock-down defender. He is an exquisite slasher. He has plus-plus athleticism. He needs to develop his shot from form on upward. But as it goes? He’s a retarded Leandro Barbosa.


Should I really make a joke here?
Jeremy Pargo, Gonzaga: Combo Guard. He has great athleticism. His shot is marginal to mediocre. And at 6’2″ he needs to learn how to develop more than a 1.71 to 1 Assist to turnover ratio. Supernintendo Chalmers says stay in school.


MMMM…Stay in school. 
Josh Shipp, UCLA: Moment of Clarity. Admittedly, he is a 6’5″ small forward. But it goes deeper. His defensive game is not great in the man-to-man aspects. He can get shots, but he can’t make them. He does provide excellent point forward skills and finish on the break, but when you’re sinking less than 33% of his jumpers? You best take more time. 
Ron Steele, Alabama: Moment of Clarity. Missed the 2007-2008 season and then declared. Self-explanatory.
John Riek, Winchendon School (MA): Moment of Clarity. Because the Winchendon School seems like a place to cultivate secret handshake motherfuckers. All honesty? He needs to cultivate his inner Hasheem Thabeet. And he’ll need at least three years of college to do it.
Robert Vaden, Alabama-Birmingham: Tweener. Sure he’s got 21 points per game. Sure, he’s got touch beyond the arc and at the line. But he’s a 6’5″ forward without defensive powers. That never works.  

Sure, some of these are suckers who will either fall off or never be heard from again. But there’s some definite intrigue here. Lester Hudson could roll up on Steffen Curry all like “Boo Motherfucker!”

I dunno. What the hell is wrong with me?

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