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Why Michael Kidd-Gilchrist fits the Bobcats system (my write-up)

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Many individuals on the message board were thoroughly upset when commissioner David Stern read out "with the second pick, the Charlotte Bobcats select: Michael Kidd-Gilchrist," and to be honest; I was a little skeptical myself. However, after digging around the aspects of what Gilchrist brings to the Bobcats and what Mike Dunlap is trying to accomplish; I think you will be pleasantly surprised.

[b]Need[/b]

When the Charlotte Bobcats traded away their only pure small forward on the roster in Corey Maggette for Ben Gordon and a future first round pick, most assumed that a small forward would be the pick; but most didn't see Michael Kidd-Gilchrist as the pick. Gilchrist was ranked as the top wing player in the 2012 NBA Draft and he possesses characteristics that you rarely see in the NBA anymore (high energy, rebounder, transition game, defender, and ability to do the little things that other guys can't or just don't want to do).

[b]Measurments[/b]

At 6'7.5" and 233 pounds, Kidd-Gilchrist's size and weight translates great to the NBA small forward position, putting him around the same area as Carmelo Anthony, Paul Pierce, and Rudy Gay. MKG also has a 7'0" wingspan and a 8'8.5" reach, both which ranked fifth among small forwards at the NBA combine. Kidd-Gilchrist also seems to be in great shape as only seven percent of his weight came in as body fat at the combine which ranked sixth among small forwards (Jeff Taylor came in first with only 4.2% of his weight being body fat). Also of note, his no step vert reach ranked him third among small forwards with an 11'4.5" measurement.

[b]Stats[/b]

Michael Kidd-Gilchrist averaged 11.9 points per game, 7.4 rebounds per game,1.9 assists per game, 1.0 steals per game, and 0.9 blocks per game. Those numbers don't seem like they belong to a second overall pick, but just wait; it gets better. Kidd-Gilchrist is far from a ball hog, and loves to get his team involved, he averaged the smallest percentage of shots of any player in Kentucky's rotation; and in attempts per game, this translates to eight attempts. Now let's dig a little further, seven of these attempts are two point field goals and the other attempt is a three point field goal, so if MKG makes every attempt, he should be scoring about 17 points per game. However, MKG isn't perfect; but he does put up 12 points per game leaving only five points off the board. Harrison Barnes averages 14 shots per game (ten two-point field goals and four three-point field goals) scoring 17 points per game out of a possible 32 points per game. Unfortunately, this hurts MKG because the less shots he puts up, the worse his efficiency is based on the system; but in reality he isn't as bad of an offensive player as people make him out to be. Kidd-Gilchrist actually shot 49% from the field (this number is somewhat inflated due to most of his shots coming at the rim) and 54% from inside the three point arc. MKG's per 40 stats were actually quite good, putting up 15.3 points per game, 9.5 rebounds per game, 2.4 assists per game, 1.3 steals per game, and 1.2 blocks per game. I personally think these are what Kidd-Gilchrist's stats will look like in the NBA because he is going to be forced to play closer to 40 minutes than he is 30 minutes. His efficiency stats weren't great, but lets remember who was on that Kentucky team. MKG accounted for 15% of all of Kentucky's points, 19% of all of Kentucky's rebounds, 11% of all of Kentucky's blocks, and 16% of all of Kentucky's steals. These are great numbers considering the fact that Kentucky just put six of those guys in the NBA.

[b]Transition Game[/b]

When Dunlap was hired, he said that the Bobcats were going to be an up-tempo team. When speaking on the draft, Dunlap said that he wanted a high energy guy who could get out and run. Michael Kidd-Gilchrist fits the mold perfectly for both of these attributes. Kidd-Gilchrist has the "LeBron James" ability if you will, to draw fouls and get to the line. Gilchrist gets to the free throw line on 18.2% of all possessions which is the top number for all wings in this years draft and a whole three percent higher than Kris Joseph's second place finish and on top of that; Kidd-Gilchrist gets out in transition the third most often out of all the wings at an astonishing 25% (one out of every four plays). Even more impressive is Kidd-Gilchrist's ability to put the ball in the basket once he is out in transition. Kidd-Gilchrist made 71% of all his field goals on the fast break, which is the top number of all players in the 2012 NBA Draft.

[b]Ability to get to rim[/b]

In today's NBA, the best players can get to the rim; and that is something that MKG does better than anyone in the draft class. In the half court offense, 47.9% of Kidd-Gilchrist's shots came at the rim which is an out of this world number when you really think about it. After watching the NBA Finals everyone agrees that LeBron's decision to finally start attacking the rim is what ultimately helped the Heat secure the NBA Championship, and with MKG's desire and will to attack the rim all ready; all he needs to work on is his shot.

[b]Gets Easy Points[/b]

One thing the Bobcats couldn't do last year was get easy points and most of these easy points that I speak of, are still there at the free throw line. The Bobcats shot 74% from the free throw line last year, but if you take the players on the active roster and average out the percentage they have going for them right now, they are at 70%. MKG was a 75% free throw shooter last year which ranks fifth among small forwards drafted. Also, that number probably could have been higher if he didn't attack the rim so much, but at the end of the day; he gets the Bobcats more easy points.

[b]Work Ethic[/b]

You won't find an 18 year old with a better work ethic than MKG. Gilchrist started the "Breakfast Club" over Christmas break at Kentucky, urging teammates to join him at the gym at 6:30 a.m. on Christmas Break to get weight lifting and shooting sessions in. MKG will instantly make the Bobcats are harder working team.

[b]It's not to late to change[/b]

Some people think that being the youngest player in the draft is a curse. In the Bobcats organization, it's a blessing. MKG is still 18, and at this point can still change some his bad habits as well as improve on some of his good one's, most notably his shooting. Anyone that believes that Kidd-Gilchrist can't become a better shooter clearly hasn't played a sport before. There are countless examples of players that develop there game later in their career. Just look at LeBron James, when he was drafted, he wasn't known as a jump shooter; he was seen as a freak athlete and a slasher at 18 years old. Now look at James, he has developed all facets of his game and is the best player in the NBA. I'm not comparing Kidd-Gilchrist to James, but saying it's to late to change is a ludicrous statement.

[b]Rebounding and Defense [/b]

Two things the Bobcats couldn't do last year, rebound and play defense. Kidd-Gilchrist can do both of these things, and he can do them very well. Kidd-Gilchrist was the most active player on the defense end in the draft class and his competitive drive causes him to be. When you watch MKG, you can tell he doesn't like to be beat on defense and he doesn't like to give up a rebound. Gilchrist can guard up to three different positions with his speed, size, and length and his footwork is phenomenal; allowing him to stay in front of quicker players. MKG just loves to battle at every area in the game and that is exactly what the Bobcats need.

[b]Leader and Winner[/b]

No matter who you ask, they will tell you that MKG was the leader of that Kentucky Wildcats basketball team in every single way. A leader is something the Bobcats lack greatly. The only player that attempted to be a leader last year for the Bobcats was 18 year old Bismack Biyombo. When the Bobcats drafted Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, they gained a great leader and a great winner. The Bobcats finally have a group of winners on the roster with Ben Gordon, Kemba Walker, and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (all experienced success at the college level). That is something that the Bobcats haven't had in quite a while. Though this team won't be good initially, the ceiling for the Bobcats looks mighty good.

[b]Hope you guys enjoyed[/b]
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Posted · Report post

Awesome read and spot on.

Once this guy steps on the court, everyone will change their tune.

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Posted · Report post

That just about sums it up. Add the ability to be a part time PG with improved ball handling and you see we got a great piece that fits and we can continue to build.

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Posted · Report post

good read up. I agree. It amazes me he was the YOUNGEST player in the draft.

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[center][img]http://multimedia.heraldinteractive.com/images/20120626/d029b0_mkg62612.jpg[/img]
[img]http://i2.cdn.turner.com/si/2012/writers/ian_thomsen/06/29/nba-draft-anthony-davis-michael-kidd-gilchrist/michael-kidd-gilchrist-story-getty.jpg[/img]
[img]http://www3.pictures.zimbio.com/gi/Michael+Kidd+Gilchrist+NCAA+Basketball+Tournament+pzjOQYlXuMtl.jpg[/img][/center]

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Posted · Report post

You guys sure are optimistic. Lost count of the LeBron comparisons. The Hornets must be damn fools if you're right.

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I think it is great that we got a guy who is 6'7, a great athlete, is a winner, and one of the best defenders in the draft and that can guard any position.

His name though is Jefferey Taylor who, as a plus, can actually score some points for us without revamping his entire shooting motion.

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[quote name='teeray' timestamp='1341005711' post='1815604']
I think it is great that we got a guy who is 6'7, a great athlete, is a winner, and one of the best defenders in the draft and that can guard any position.

His name though is Jefferey Taylor who, as a plus, can actually score some points for us without revamping his entire shooting motion.
[/quote]

Swedish players typically don't amount to much in the NBA. Doesn't mean Jeffery Taylor can't, but I'm a bit skeptical.

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Posted · Report post

The best post I've seen about this pick on here or Bobcats Planet. Bravo.

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Great description. This is actually one of the first times that I can see optimism building for the city of Charlotte basketball. It will never be like the hornets of Charlotte. Not saying that I want that Bc this a new era and this is our team. And I think MKG gives a lot of fans around here some hope and excitement.

What I don't understand is how people get he's undersized. He's a good size SF with a lean body. He's 6'7"1/2. Some of the same people saying he's undersized are the ones who wanted t rob... A 6'7-6'8" PF.

But overall I'm happy in the way things are going. But hopefully we will still be exciting to watch but yet still bad enough to warrant a top 5 pick. Then we could possibly get another game changer to add to the mix. Then make a run at a couple veteran players to get this team to a real level of competition and bring back a winning team to Charlotte.

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Would love to have a top 3 pick next year, we'll definitely get our superstar within the top 5 picks. This class was WEAK.

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Great write up. MKG is a beast and cannot wait to see him hit the floor. I'm actually excited about next year. We may not be that good but we have some good young talent.

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