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Too Many Small Forwards?

So I've been doing some serious thinking since the Dallas Mavericks' demise. I am a Mavs fan and after the initial anger subsided, I started to think what needs to happen next, how do the Mavs go about repairing this team? I know, this is a Texas Tech blog, and I'm getting to my point. But I must digress a little more.

I remember watching New Jersey over the past two or three years and how they've typically drafted. Aside from last year where a top 10 point guard fell into their laps late, they had drafted or acquired 3 players who seemed to play the same position. At the time, I remember thinking to myself that it was so silly that the Nets would acquire swing-man after swing-man (Vince Carter, Richard Jefferson and Antoine Wright). Well, I was wrong, very, very wrong.

It seems to me that there are a couple of obvious fixes for Dallas. The first being to acquire low post scoring, which isn't something that you can pick up at your local market, however, the Mavs could look to acquire at least 2 athletic swing-men. I think this solves a couple of problems for the Mavs. First, they would be better equipped to handle most teams defensively and the Mavs would have some options as to who would guard a particular player. It would also allow Dallas to run a little more which would theoretically create some easier opportunities on the offensive end.

I know, this is a long way to Tech, but next year Tech has 4 swing-type players who fit this mold. When Tech first signed this class, internally I thought that signing so many players who play the same or similar positions is a mistake, but I kept reminding myself that signing so many talented players, regardless of position is good news for the overall talent level for this team. I now know the error of my ways and there can not be enough of these talented players. In no particular order let's take a look at the incoming wing players:

  • D'Wayln Roberts: Roberts is a skinny but very athletic (6-7, 180) forward from Duncanville who has a decent outside shot, and has very long arms, much like Kevin Durant, but on a smaller frame. Very good player, can run the floor and block shots.
  • Mike Singletary: Singletary already has a Big 12 body at 6-5 and 210 pounds, already has a decent shot, but once again, is very athletic and can score inside. Led his high school team to the state title game, eventually losing to Roberts' high school team.
  • Darryl Ashford: There won't be too many of us who have seen Ashford play as he spent the last year at New Hampton Prep, however, just from his measurables, he's 6-4, which would make him big enough to guard most shooting guards and small forwards in the Big 12.
  • A.J. Hardeman: I'd love to see Hardeman come to Tech, sit out a year, get adjusted to college life and then be unleashed on the rest of the Big 12. Once again, although I haven't seen Hardeman play, I get the impression that he's a better rebounder than Roberts and has a little more size (6-7, 210), thus making him more of an inside presence immediately.

I know it's simplistic to say that the Mavs can fix everything with a little more athleticism and it's simplistic to say that the Red Raiders can be a much better teamwith more athleticism, however, I do think that this will help tremendously next year. Having multiple options is a wonderful thing to have for a coach and would have allowed Tech to match up better against teams like Texas, Oklahoma State, Kansas, A&M, etc., the list goes on.

This is a good thing.