Tuesday, June 06, 2006

2011 All-NBA Teams

I got this idea directly from the mighty mjd sports blog. He wrote about this idea a couple weeks ago, and I thought it was really cool, but it took me a while to finally get the time to write it. A lot of my picks are similar to his, but then we obviously have a lot of differences (as you'll see). I tried to keep the positions as best I could, but some maybe be a little off.

First Team

PG Chris Paul - Tough call early on, but I think Paul is the best PG of the future. The jumper needs work, but that's true for most rookies. He still can score, he's a great passer, he's unselfish, and he doesn't turn it over. His 3.34 A/T ratio was 6th in the NBA last year. Also snagged 5 boards a game, which is nice to get from a guard. Add in the fact that he nearly led his team to the playoffs as a rookie, and well, here he is.
SG Dwyane Wade - Does it all. Averaged 27 points per game, over 5 rebounds, and nearly 7 assists as a 2 guard. He's a solid defender, very athletic, and he shot nearly 50% from the field this year. By 2011 (actually, even earlier than that), I suspect he'll be the 2nd best player in the NBA behind the next guy.
SF LeBron James - We all know about him, so I'll be brief. Most athletic player in the NBA. Best finisher at the rim in the NBA. Great passer, solid rebounder, and always gives maximum effort. He's got to improve his jumper some more, and become a better on-the-ball defender, but those are small complaints in comparison to everything that he does so well.
PF Dwight Howard - Just an absolute monster on the glass, and he can't even drink yet. His 12.5 rebounds per game were second in the NBA. Improving offensive game, upping his scoring average by almsot 14 points a game in his second year. Explosive around the rim, shoots a great percentage (53% last year). Oh yeah, did I mention he's only 20 years old?
C Yao Ming - He gets ragged on a lot for some of the things he doesn't do, but the truth is, he's a great player. Upped his scoring average each of his first 4 years, scoring over 22 per game last year. Feathery touch around the basket, and he's almost too unselfish at times. Not a great rebounder, but grabs over 10 a game down there. At times he's unstoppable down low, and when he get that consistency down, he'll be even more of an unstoppable force down low.


Second Team

PG Gilbert Arenas - I had a very tough time choosing between Arenas and Paul for the First Team PG spot, but went with Paul there, but that's no slight to Gilbert. He's a great scorer, averaging 29 per game last year. He's a solid distributor with 6.1 assists a game, but he was #1 in the NBA last year in turnovers, which is ultimately why I took Paul over him. Best second round pick ever. That sound you hear is Warriors fans trying to stick their head in an oven.
SG Kobe Bryant - Obviously he showed us all the things he can do with the vastly different styles of play in the regular season and playoffs. Unbelievably skilled, and should be entering his prime now. He showed during the season that he can score lots of points on anybody, but then showed during the playoffs that he's a great passer. Tough call between him and Wade, but I suspect that in 5 years when Kobe's lost a step Wade will overtake him, but Bryant will still be a star.
SF Carmelo Anthony - Looking beyond his poor performance in the playoffs, he was one of the most improved players in the NBA last year. He learned to be more consistent last year, and got to the hoop more (nearly 150 more FT last year than in 2005). The results? An increase in scoring and lots of game winners. He needs to help more on the boards, and he needs to get better defensively, but don't forget, he only just turned 22.
PF Dirk Nowitski - Along with Kobe, the senior member of this group, but I believe he's taken the next step this year to become to more complete, superstar player. Unbelievable shooter, whether he's taking a running three or a fadeaway from the elbow. Not a great defensive player, but he's improving under Avery Johnson. Always been a good rebounder and good passer. Doesn't rely so much on athleticism, which is why he'll still be very good in 5 years.
C Greg Oden - Obviously the most controversial pick here, but he projects to be a star player. From all reports, he's a great rebounder, great defensive player, very good inside scorer... the only question marks are that he hasn't played against great competition. Let me put it this way, I'd be more surprised if he's not on at least the All-NBA Third team than if he's on the All-NBA 1st Team.

Third Team

PG Shaun Livingston - I absolutely love Livingston's game. He a tall PG, at 6'7'', ut he's quick enough to guard the small point guards (such as Steve Nash during the playoffs), which gives him the potential to be very good defensively. Offensively, he's very quick, good off the dribble, a great passer, and pretty unselfish. He's not a very good shooter right now, but he's only 20 years old, and his physical skills are so good I'll give it a pass for now. As a scrawny guy coming off the bench to play 25 minutes a game, he averaged 4.7 RPG in the playoffs.
SG Kirk Hinrich - If you would have told me I would put Hinrich on a list like this when he was coming out of college, I would have told you that you were crazy. But the more I watch Hinrich, the more I like him. He's a good scorer at 15.9 PPG, a good passer at 6.3 APG, and he takes care of the ball. But he's also a very good defensive player. He's always in the right spot, which makes him so good even if he's not overly athletic. I love his game, and he's the forgotten 5th man from the 2003 Draft (taken 7th overall).
SF Boris Diaw - Ok, so he's not really a SF. I admit, I had to lie a little to fit him in. At age 24, he does a little bit of everything. He can score down in the post, he can hit the midrange jumper, and he can take bigger guys off the dribble (just ask DeSagana Diop). But he's also a good rebounder, and a great passer who always finds the open man. He's an efficient weapon, and too good to leave off.
PF Amare Stoudemire - The hardest player to project because of the injury. If he's fully healthy like he was before the knee injury, he's probably on the first team over Dwight Howard (or Yao, if you consider him a center). However, there's no way of telling how he'll be when he's back. Microfracture surgery has diminished Jason Kidd's skills (although he's still a good player because of his other skills), and Stoudemire depends more on his athleticism than Kidd does. I think he'll still be a great player when he comes back, but I'm not sure if he'll have quite the explosiveness, which is why I put him here.
C - Chris Bosh - Ok, so maybe he's not officially a center, but you get the idea. He's too good to leave off. He can score in the post or in the midrange, he's a solid rebounder, and he's excellent when he gets to the line. And the best part? He's still only 22, despite having 3 quality seasons under his belt. Last year was the first of many All-Star games for this guy.

So, how does it look? Am I way off here? What changes would you make?

9 comments:

Anonymous said...

boris d. is terrible

kevin durant will be in that spot before diaw

Anonymous said...

Yeah, Diaw was a terrible pick there. Kevin Durant definitely over him... what about OJ Mayo? Brandon Wright? Michael Beasley? Derrick Rose?

carmen5rausch said...

Hinrich? no, deron williams, yes. Boris diaw is a one hit wonder, i'd put durant ahead of hinrich, diaw, oden, and livingston. Livingston will never be all-nba any team. Chris bosh will be first team, second at worst. He's the main man in toronto even with jermaine oneal, Back to diaw, rudy gay, durant, jeff green, and brandon roy would all come before him. Brandon roy is already one of the best young players in the nba, he does everyhting for his team. Two years is not an eternity away, kobe bryant is not deteriorating he is still getting better and i predict he has potentially 3 mvp seasons left if not more.

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