The Charlotte Bobcats need help at power forward.
OK, I guess it's not much of a secret. Not after coach Larry Brown's 349 hints. He uses words like “roster imbalance,” which sounds subtle, but not so much. Then he says he's “begging” general manager Rod Higgins for a trade, so even the most dense among us will get the point:
Something really must happen before the Feb. 19 trade deadline, and Larry will keep prodding for it. That's just him and it always has been him.
I'm friends with Billy King, who ran the Philadelphia 76ers before and after Brown's departure. Brown brought King to Philadelphia, knowing he needed someone to talk him out of rash or regrettable decisions. Then, after Brown left for Detroit and New York, King brought Brown back to the Sixers, effectively as a consultant.
King liked that Brown would challenge him. That's a great word to describe what Brown does. He challenges everyone to do their best. Generally that's good, but it can wear down people around him.
Brown needs someone reliable to back up Boris Diaw at power forward. You can spend all day saying what rookie Derrick Brown might be, but he's still a rookie and still a 'tweener. I think Derrick Brown is a keeper, but that doesn't mean he's ready right now to get the Bobcats to the playoffs.
Solidifying the power-forward position really might be the difference in making the playoffs. It's not just what Brown can't do with what he has, but also what he must do with what he has.
Gerald Wallace can pretend to be an NBA power forward and Stephen Jackson can, too. But the more time they spend banging bodies with men 50 pounds heavier, the more they wear down. We see it all the time in the NFL; little guys colliding with big guys eventually sends them to the sidelines or, at minimum, erodes their effectiveness.
Wallace and Jackson are already playing massive minutes. Their versatility, particularly on defense, is a big plus, but what happens if one of them gets hurt? Between them, they've missed exactly one game as Bobcats this season. And even with them, this team has a slim margin for error.
Asking either to guard power forwards on more than an occasional basis is inviting a calamity. It would cost money to do something about this, and the Bobcats are already losing millions this season.
But ultimately this reminds me of maintaining a nice car. You buy a Mercedes because you plan to drive it for a long time. Why would you spend for a Mercedes without changing the oil or getting a tune-up?
The Bobcats need one more tune-up if they're going to drive all the way to playoffs. That tune-up is help at power forward.
From My Point of View
Brown may want to look at the Center position while also looking for help at the Power Forward position.
Edited by CarolinaPanthers8789, 18 January 2010 - 11:51 AM.