Jason Kidd isn’t getting any younger. Actually, nobody is getting any younger. Unless they are the clients of this man. But I digress. In their 2006 draft crop, The Nets might have found genuine depth, writes the New York Post’s Fred Kerber.
In Marcus Williams, the Nets finally may have found their backup to Jason Kidd. Williams scored 27 points in yesterday’s 92-77 loss to Chicago, finishing with averages of 16.6 points and 8.0 assists. Additionally, Williams, chosen 22nd in the draft, was selected by one website as tied with No. 3 pick Adam Morrison as the Pepsi Summer League™s most impressive rookie.
“He™s a gifted passer, has real good floor vision. He showed that he has a chance to be a good shooter. He™s got a good offensive feel,” said Frank noting Josh Boone, picked 23rd, was “very solid, ran the floor well, was very active around the bucket offensively and defensively, finished around the basket, showed good hands and understands what he can and cannot do.”
Boone averaged 10.6 points and 7.8 rebounds, shot .615 (24-of-39). He blocked five shots in the finale. The Nets™ leading scorer was Antoine Wright at 17.2 ppg.
Though the Knicks’ selection of Renaldo Balkman was almost universally mocked, former coach Larry Brown wouldn’t have been amongst those laughing, writes the New York Daily News’ Frank Isola.
According to several sources, Brown was calling Balkman “a potential steal” weeks before the draft.
While he was still employed by the Knicks, Brown was responsible for running Balkman’s workout. He also scouted him extensively during the Orlando pre-draft camp.
“There were five players that figured to be available late in the first round that Larry really liked,” says one Knicks source. “I don’t know if Larry would have taken him as high as 20 but he always liked Balkman.”
Brown, according to the source, told several of his close associates around the league to consider Balkman. Although Brown and Thomas disagreed on everything last season, they shared the same opinion on a raw forward with loads of athleticism and limited offensive skills. When reached at his East Hampton home, Brown declined to comment on the Knicks.
Though Balkman has drawn comparisons to Dennis Rodman and Ron Artest, many scouts see him only as a role player who won’t crack the rotation as a rookie.
“For a first-round draft choice he’s okay,” says one scout who watched all of Balkman’s games in Las Vegas. “He doesn’t have a true position. I don’t see how he gets on the floor. Considering where they picked, I’m not sure you could have done better.”
In a move surely not unrelated to Michael Jordan’s recent assumption of power in Charlotte, car-wash magnate/fashion plate Charles Oakley is expected to become a member of the Bobcats coaching staff.