Tag:Samuel Dalembert
Posted on: September 24, 2010 9:17 am
 

Preseason Primer: Sacramento Kings

Posted by Matt Moore
 
Could we have seen it coming? Could we have known that Tyreke Evans was going to join Michael Jordan and LeBron James among the handful of players to average 20 points, 5 rebounds, and 5 assists in their rookie season? That he would make such a huge difference? Well, yeah, we should have. The question is where do the Kings, whose rebuilding project they find accelertaed, go from here? That's where we begin with the lastest in our Preseason Primers .

Training camp site: Sacramento, CA
Training camp starts: September 28th

Key additions: Samuel Dalembert (trade), Antoine Wright (free agency), Luther Head (free agency), DeMarcus Cousins (draft)

Key subtractions: Spencer Hawes (trade), Jon Brockman (trade), Andres Nocioni (trade)

Likely starting lineup: Tyrke Evans (PG), Beno Udrih (SG), Donte Greene (SF), Carl Landry (PF), Samuel Dalembert (C)

Player to watch: DeMarcus Cousins. There's no getting around it. "Boogie" is the guy you want to keep an eye on. He could dominate. He could underwhelm. He could blow up on his teammates. he could fit in seamlessly. He could add weight. He could slim down. Anything is possible with Cousins, and his progression will be a huge factor in how the Kings do this season.


Chemistry quiz: Evans needs to be the leader, and this is the season where he's got to start showing that. Meanwhile, there aer a bunch of players on the Kings like Thompson and Greene who may wind up frustrated if they can't secure their positions on the team. Throw in the explosive Cousins and you have a tenuous situation that could be brilliant, could be terrible. It's wait and see.


Camp battles: All eyes on small forward, as Donte Greene and Omri Casspi battle for control of the universe... I mean, small forward spot. Greene has more experience and athleticism, but Casspi is arguably more skilled. This is going to be and intense and close fight. Sorting out the rest of the frontcourt will be tough as well with experience (Dalembert, Landry) versus upside (Thompson and Cousins) as well as slotting positions.

Injury issues:
Evans had an ankle injury in Team USA tryouts but should be fine. Other than that, the Kings enter camp healthy.

Biggest strength: Athleticism. Evans, Thompson, Greene, Cousins, Landry. They're tough, long, and athletic. That team can create mismatches on the floor sheer length and leaping ability. Strong, too. Should be a lot of fun to watch.

Glaring weakness: Inexperience. The best thing about being young is you don't know any better. That's also the worst thing. The Kings are going to struggle as they learn how to win. Learning to be consistent starts in camp.
Posted on: September 13, 2010 9:59 am
 

Shootaround 9.13.10: 'Toine's got an invite

Bobcats aggressively looking to move Damp, the Magic's new arena is smarter than you, and Oden's progress going slow. Posted by Matt Moore

The Bobcats have what their GM is calling "probably one of the most valuable contracts in the league " in Erick Dampier. Dampier's contract is a non-guaranteed, voidable deal for $13 million, meaning a team can dump one or several players for Dampier, then waive him and clear off money immediately. If the Bobcats can find a taker, they might be able to solve some of their considerable problems. Like the fact that they have no viable point guard in place. You know.... that.

Speaking of valuable partially guaranteed expiring contracts, Magic Basketball takes a look at whether Vince Carter can be moved this season by himself for a wing upgrade. The prospects are not great.

Most new arenas are nice. But the Magic's new arena is smart . They're able to target advertising in real-time, flexible responses, and the ticket systems can load cash for concessions if ticket gift-givers want to provide a meal along with the basketball.

There's an unwritten rule, one that should be written for a lot of first-time credentialed press members from team blogs, that you don't root in the press box. Unless, apparently, you're abroad for an international competition .

Samuel Dalembert is not so much a fan of the Canadian national team's coach . Okay, that's kind of an understatement. To say that he pins all their problems on Leo Rautins would be more accurate. Dalembert has had a year with what happened in his home country of Haiti. This is just one other failure he's venting about.

Greg Oden will not be in attendance during team scrimmages this week. I know, you're shocked. Try and lay down for a bit to deal with this news.

Antoine Walker has actually been invited by a real life NBA team to participate in some practices and scrimmages. The Bobcats have made no assurances he'll make it even to camp, though.

Andre Iguodala reflects on the entire FIBA World Championship experience and winning the gold.

Guess who's available? Pops Mensah-Bonsu! Contract rescinded, back on the street , ready to come in and play five or six minutes at a time with rebounds and missed dunks at your disposal. Kidding aside, Bonsu's a solid bench player that deserves a run.

The NBA just inked a deal with a Spanish bank for $100 million for sponsorship across the NBA, WNBA, and the D-League. That's a pretty big chunk of change. The league keeps talking about losses, and keeps ratcheting up big deals.
Posted on: September 2, 2010 1:17 pm
Edited on: September 7, 2010 1:22 pm
 

Pop Quiz: What teams are flying under the radar?

Posted by Royce Young

Fall is here, hear the yell, back to school, ring the bell ... The NBA season is right around the corner, and NBA training camp starts in just a few short weeks. To get you ready for the NBA season, we've put together 25 pop quizzes. Pencils ready? We continue our Pop Quizzes with this question.. .

What teams might people be sleeping on?

When the season starts, everyone is in first place. And when the season starts, everyone has the hopes of being that sleeper team that comes out of nowhere to shock the basketball world. Everyone thinks their team could be the next Oklahoma City Thunder, the next Tampa Bay Rays, the next New Orleans Saints. Even the most pessimistic fan has that small bone in their body that thinks, "What if?"

But for some squads, it's just not realistic. Just like there has to be a best team, there also has to be a worst team. We've already tried to focus in on that really, really bad team. But what about the squads maybe flying under the radar? Not just teams that might come out of nowhere and make a playoff run, but teams like last season's Memphis Grizzlies who were simply just better than expected. Or teams that people simply aren't giving enough credence to. So, who are this season's sleeper candidates?

Sacramento Kings
The Kings are almost approaching "trendy pick" territory, which is extremely dangerous. That's the area the Clippers were in last season and where teams like the Houston Texans have perpetually been stationed. It's like sports purgatory. You're better than terrible, probably mediocre, but because of elevated expecations, you're set up to be a disappointment. It's a really odd place. And the Kings might be in that category.

But the reality is, there's a ton of talent on that roster. Tyreke Evans is obviously waiting to break out into superstardom, smart moves brought in Carl Landry and Samuel Dalembert, two players that help a lot and of course drafting maybe the most talented player last June in DeMarcus Cousins helps. The roster has talent, and lots of it, but it's about overcoming youth and learning to win. The Thunder figured those things out last season as they put together an unexpected 50-win season. That expectation might be a little high for this young Sacramento squad, but seeing them as a potential .500 team or maybe even pushing for the postseason in March isn't too hard to picture. 

Indiana Pacers
By playing much better basketball and finishing the last two months of the season 12-10, the Pacers played themselves out of a higher lottery pick. But what they might have done, is played themselves into a better 2010-11 campaign. Momentum heading into an offseason is always a good thing and even with a rag-tag roster that didn't feature a real point guard, the Pacers were able to compete. Now with Darren Collison, a proven point man, Indiana has something to get a little more excited about.

Of course losing Troy Murphy stings. Stings a lot in fact. Indiana is desperately searching for an interior replacement for Murphy, but for now, the Pacers will try and survive on Danny Granger's scoring, Collison's creating and the continued development of Roy Hibbert. The Eastern Conference is looking at a changing of the guard with teams like Cleveland falling down the line a bit. The eighth spot is wide open in the East, and the Pacers might just have enough to get there.

New Jersey Nets
Don't laugh. Seriously, don't. Everyone knows the Nets weren't truly as bad as their record indicated last season. It was a snowball effect that started in training camp and eventually led to the team flirting with the worst record ever. Simply put, that roster was just too good to win only 14 games last year.

But with the additions of Jordan Farmar, Travis Outlaw and Troy Murphy, there has definitely been a talent upgrade. An interior duo of Brook Lopez and Murphy is definitely one of the best combos in the East. Add in rookie Derrick Favors whose ceiling is so high even he can't touch it and the Nets are a lock to be better. Will they be a playoff team? Probably not. But can they be a vastly improved squad that at least can talk a little postseason around February and March? Definitely.

Portland Trail Blazers
What are they doing on here? Well, hear me out. Most aren't considering the Blazers a true Western contender this season. Most don't think Portland has what it takes to get to the Western finals. Playoff team? Certainly. But a team to be reckoned with? Hardly.

And that's where I think people might be wrong.

Everyone knows the well chronicled injury issues the Blazers faced last year. Starters missed lots of games, bench players missed lots of games, everyone missed lots of games. The team was ripped apart with injuries, but yet somehow, someway, made it into the playoffs and won over 50 games. So imagine that Blazer roster at full tilt. Of course that's a big if, because assuming Greg Oden will be healthy for a full season is like assuming Gary Busey won't say something crazy on TV. But even just having Brandon Roy, Joel Pryzbilla, Andre Miller and Nicolas Batum all together for a full 82 means that's a pretty scary roster. Is this your traditional sleeper? Not really because everyone already knows they're good. But the question is, just how good?

 
 
 
 
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