NBA General

NBA In Full Swing

With AI settling into his new home, Webber looking for his next destination, and the current 76ers struggling mightily, it is safe to say the rebuilding process has begun in Philadelphia. Out west, the Mavericks and Suns are seperating themselves from the rest of the pack. In Denver, well, let’s just say I can’t wait to see what happens next.After talking about where Iverson was going to go in an article for, it is long overdue for me to give my 2 cents on the rebuilding process taking place in Philly. At first, I thought they could get more value for AI. Upon further review, Andre Miller gives them a true point guard that they haven’t had before. The 2 first round picks from Denver give them 3 total picks in the 1st round. According to’s current mock draft, the 76ers would currently hold the 2nd, 17th, and 30th picks. has them getting Kevin Durant at 2, Corey Brewer at 17, and Mustafa Shakur at 30. I would probably take Tyler Hansbrough at 17 instead of Brewer because you have Andre Iguodala, Rodney Carney, and Kyle Korver already. Hansbrough gives them a winning attitude and hard worker. I strongly beleive in what the Bulls did in the draft. They took proven winners at the college level. Hansbrough fits the description, and gives them a safe pick to fill the void at power forward. Kevin Durant is a stud and you can’t go wrong with him, while Shakur gives them depth at point guard to vastly upgrade over Kevin Ollie. Suddenly, they would be starting a lineup something like this:

PG Andre Miller
SG Andre Iguodala
SF Kevin Durant
PF Tyler Hansbrough
C Samuel Dalembert

That team could have an outside chance of making the playoffs in the Atlantic Division. The variable that we haven’t touched on is they will, for the first time in 3 years, have some form of cap relief to go after free agents. Chris Webber was bought out and, surprisingly, that went down very smoothly. Webber wants to go to a contender and rightfully so. Though he won’t play big minutes, he can provide a role similar to what Gary Payton or Alonzo Mourning played for the Heat last season. After all the dust has settled, it appears the rebuilding process is off to a relatively smooth start under the circumstances.

The Dallas Mavericks and Phoenix Suns have put together phenomenal stretches since starting out slow. The Mavericks started 0-4 and have gone 29-4 since then. The Suns started 1-5 and have gone 25-3 since. If you take away the slow starts, both teams would be on pace to win at least 70 games. We haven’t seen that since since the glory days of the NBA with the Bulls. To think we were so close to having two in the same season, what a shame they had to get off to such rocky starts.

Tackling the Denver Nuggets, I watched them play and AI can co-exist with Carmelo Anthony. Iverson is on a mission to play team basketball and not just put up jumpers. Head Coach George Karl has said that this Melo’s team so hopefully that will make it easier for AI to continue his unselfish play. People say there isn’t enough time for this team to gel and still make a playoff push. I think that is non-sense, when Anthony returns the Nuggets will have 46 games to get on get on track! At 17-16 and currently right in the playoff mix, even if they go below .500 the first few games together they have room for error in the long run.

They did throw me for a loop when they traded Earl Boykins. Boykins was a great spark off the bench and a mismatch nightmare when him and AI were on the floor. The theory is that it makes it easier for everyone else to get their shots without Boykins. However, if you recall the guy who supposed to be the odd man out was J.R. Smith. Now, suddenly, they decided to keep Smith and trade Boykins for Steve Blake. Blake is average at-best, but doesn’t take up a lot of shots so I guess he fits but I would think they could have gotten more value if they had shopped around a little longer.

Ron Jumper also writes for

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