The Charlotte Bobcats could not have had a better season. Actually, if winning 7 of 66 games isn’t embarrassing enough, it would be even more embarrassing if the Bobcats didn’t end up getting the #1 pick in the June draft. This team has a lot of improving to do and it starts with cleaning house.
When I looked at the roster and what some of the players are making, in terms of money, I was dumb-founded. Here is a list of what each player is set to make for the 2012-2013 season (click here).
If they keep Corey Maggette, Tyrus Thomas, Bismack Biyombo, Reggie Williams, Kemba Walker, Gerald Henderson, and Byron Mullens on the roster for next season, the Bobcats would have a total of $32,164,847 under contract. From some of the research I have done, the salary cap is $60 million meaning the Bobcats would have $27,835,153 to spend on draft picks, free agents, and re-signing players. I think [Kemba] Walker can be a long-term solution at the point guard spot. But they have questions at shooting guard, small forward, power forward, and center. They are not going to fix all their problems through the draft, so they will have to sign two or three guys via free agency that can come in and contribute right away.
The Bobcats have one first and second round pick in the draft. They are the favorites to get the #1 pick via the lottery selection. If they end up with the #1 pick, they need to take Kentucky star Anthony Davis. He will fill the void at the power forward spot and be the best defensive player on the team (that’s not saying much but still). If the Bobcats encountered more bad luck and end up with the second, third, fourth, or even fifth pick in the draft, they should look to fill other needs.
If they get the second pick, they should take Kansas power forward Thomas Robinson.
If they get the third pick, they should take Florida shooting guard Bradley Beal.
If they get the fourth pick, they should take North Carolina small forward Harrison Barnes.
And, God forbid, if they get the fifth pick, they should take Kentucky small forward Michael Kidd-Gilchrist.
But I expect the Bobcats to get the first pick and take Davis. With their second round pick, the Bobcats should look to upgrade the shooting guard position. I like Vanderbilt’s shooting guard John Jenkins. I think Jenkins could develop into a very solid player, and maybe even an all-star, someday. He can really the shoot the ball, but I don’t know if he is still going to be left when the Bobcats select at #31.
The Bobcats aren’t going to solve all their problems through the draft. Free agency is going to be crucial for this team to improve their roster. If I was Michael Jordan, I am hoping that D.J. Augustin and D.J. White don’t accept their qualifying offers. Things haven’t gone smoothly for Augustin in his four seasons. He has been injured some this season and they drafted Walker for a reason. Augustin isn’t going to help you win, neither is White. They both need to go.
Some possible free agent targets for the Bobcats are Nick Young (SG), Ersan Ilyasova (PF), Gerald Wallace (SF), Chris Kaman (C), Spencer Hawes (C), Jerryd Bayless (PG), Jonny Flynn (PG), and Shannon Brown (SG).
The Bobcats have a lot to improve, but they can start doing it as soon as this June. With a few good draft picks and free agent signings, the ‘Cats can turn this thing around.
But when was the last time MJ made a smart move? Since making the playoffs back in 2010, he has stripped the Bobcats of Raymond Felton, Tyson Chandler, Gerald Wallace, and Stephen Jackson.
It’s hard to win when you get rid of veteran players for younger players who are unproductive and not ready to make an impact in the NBA.
I hope the Bobcats can turn it around. Maybe they will win more than seven games next season?