Some Actual Meat to Chew On

Two items have piqued our interest this morning.

First of all, Gene Hansbrough, father of Tyler Hansbrough as told WRAL that the consensus player of the year is undecided about his future.  That is not really surprising and one thing that is often missed with Hansbrough is the only reason to return has to do with personal and team glory i.e. breaking records and winning a title.  His draft stock is going to stay where it is for the most part.

Secondly, DraftExpress has info on three Tar Heel players but not the three you think.

Ty Lawson- Sources with knowledge of the situation claim that Lawson will return to North Carolina next season, as he is not satisfied with where he’s being projected to be drafted—in the late first to early second round. He’s been moved to our 2009 mock draft.

Tyler Hansbrough- Sources close to the situation tell us that Hansbrough will likely enter his name in the draft without an agent and try to help his stock with a strong showing at the Orlando pre-draft camp. He’s currently projected to be drafted in the 20’s, although it’s not quite clear how much another year of college basketball will help him in the short or long-term.

Danny Green- Is reportedly strongly considering testing the waters without an agent.

What?  Danny Green?  Actually I heard Green’s name bantered about right after UNC lost to Kansas but I dismissed it because I was under the impression he was not looking to enter the draft.  This sounds like he wants to go through the process and see what shakes out.  There is also the issue with his father being in prison and who knows how that is affectiing his decision since he might be looking to get to the NBA and earn some money assuming his stock goes up.  If Lawson returns because he is unhappy with his status that is an encouraging sign since he (1) made a smart move (2) you know for sure he is going to play his rear end off next season to impress people. As for Hansbrough this information confirms the idea that his stock is not going to improve with another season so he is inclined to see what kind of waves he can make during the process and if it works out he is gone, if not he will return.

Still no news on Ellington’s intentions

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79 Responses to Some Actual Meat to Chew On

  1. Will says:

    This process is wild. You would have to guess and press conference or press release would come by Friday.

  2. […] Tywon, and Tyler have Q-Tip’s support! I’m sure they are relieved. I thought Danny Green would consider his options […]

  3. AEM says:

    Could it be that the site misprinted and put Green’s name instead of Ellington’s? That could make more sense to me. Not saying that Green is not thinking about testing the waters, but for now there has been no mention of him anywhere and the trio has always been talked about almost as a unit, you see one name, you see all three. In the end, by Sunday we should know the result.

    AEM

  4. jackiemanuel says:

    Not sure why my linking posted twice. Green might be the best NBA prospect, no?

  5. wcb22 says:

    I wonder if Roy has been out recruiting?

  6. Isn’t Danny’s dad out of prison now since there was some talk about him not being able to leave his state but perhaps being able to work out a deal to see Danny play in the Final Four?

    Green testing the waters instead of Wayne makes more sense, as does Tyler trying to up his stock by particiapting in pre-draft workouts and camps. However, how much further (or is it farther?) up the ladder can he realistically climb here? MAYBE mid-teens? Of course, either way (stay or go) he will be drafted out of the lottery this year or next.

  7. Chris says:

    I wouldn’t suggest that Green terminate his lease on his apartment anytime soon. The NBA? Are you kidding? He can dance, I’ll give you that……….maybe a tryout for Dancing with the Stars is in order.

    Hansbrough is by far the best NBA prospect on the team. He will have a long, durable, productive and lucrative career in the NBA. He’s not a JJ Redick type situation.

  8. Tar Heel Fan says:

    Green is possibly the best pro prospect, it was just surprising to see it had reached that point. He did a good job of flying under the radar since the focus was on the other three. Since he is a junior he should avail himself of using the process and I wrote as much last season.

  9. Josh Bowling says:

    Chris, is the fact that Hansbrough is the only one who showed up well on the Final Four the reason you feel better about his situation and potential? I know I probably had an over inflated view of him from the beginning, while you have had a much lesser view of him. Seems we have kind of settled in the middle so to speak about Tyler.

  10. C. Michael says:

    It is smart for any Junior to test the waters. You get to do it once, “for free,” so why not? I agree that Green may end up being the best pro out of the group. Right now all three (Ty, Wayne and DG) are predicted to be first rounders in the 2009 draft.

  11. Tar Heel Fan says:

    Danny Green could be the next Tayshaun Prince.

  12. C. Michael says:

    I could see that. He’s not as tall/long, but he has better bulk which will allow him to be a better on-ball defender. Maybe a Manu-type ceiling…

  13. Tar Heel Fan says:

    And something else to consider. Green’s best case is to go late in the first round to a contender team where he can be a role player. He is not a superstar/franchise guy so if he tests and gets himself on the Spurs, Rockets, Celtics, Suns, etc he can work himself into a contributing role with little pressure.

  14. Josh Bowling says:

    Man, we are finding ourselves outside of next year’s ncaa sweet sixteen.

  15. Josh Bowling says:

    ^^^^^^

    Did you see Ed Davis in the Jordan Game? He looked like he could care less about playing basketball. I hope that seeing the UNC campus ignites him.

  16. bamagrad says:

    I actually wasn’t surprised to see Danny’s name listed, but not for the reasons people have listed here. I don’t recall where I read it, but I remember reading that his father, prior to going to jail, (during Danny’s freshman or sophomore year) wrote letters to all the UNC coaches regarding Danny’s playing time or lack thereof. Coach Holladay actually opened his and read it and discussed it with Coach Williams, but Coach Williams never opened his…why because it’s Coach Williams’s team and no one gets to tell him who plays when and how much.

    So depending on how influential Danny’s father is on his decisions, Danny has always seemed like the most likely to jump out of anyone on the team…and not because of his draft prospects but because of his “attitude.” There were a couple of times during the season based on his overconfidence in his shot selection and his comments in his press conferences that he reminded me of Rashad McCants (the bad Rashad McCants).

  17. tarheeler4life says:

    I dont think Tyler is good enought to play in the NBA. He’s not going to get any substantial playing time his first year anyway. He should stay his last year and win a title at UNC!!!!!

  18. tarheeler4life says:

    Green isn’t going anywhere!!!!! I beleive you guys are looking into this way too hard.

  19. tarheeler4life says:

    Oh yeah and without an agent too? Give me a break!!!

  20. Tar Heel Fan says:

    How are we looking into this “way too hard?” We have a report from a website that has shown past credibility in this area saying Green is thinking about testing the waters. The situation with his father might be part of the reasoning that is true and since there is apparently some kind of rift between the coaching staff and Green’s father(based on the comment above) it is possible the reason no one has heard anything about it is because he is doing it without the UNC staff’s input. Now that is speculation on my part but it could be the case which is why his name has not come up when Roy had discussed the “gathering information” phase.

    And the fact you do not think Tyler is good enough to play in the NBA sort of reveals your ignorance. He question is not whether he can make to the NBA, the question is longevity and impact.

  21. Asheville Heel says:

    Thanks for the memories… As much as I wish it not to be true Heels fans, get prepared for an annoucement this week that ALL three of the guys will declare for the draft. It is not certain that all of them will sign with an agent so there could be an outside chance that someone in the group returns but I am not counting on it. This news is consistent with what we heard prior to the season that regardless of what happened Lawson and Ellington were gone after this year. Tyler would more than likely stay if Lawson was coming back but he knows that he has “no shot” at the 2009 NC without him. Other than staying and breaking a lot of the UNC & ACC career records TH has accomplished everything he can at the college level. If he has no chance at winning the NC he truly does not care about personal records. He will go down as one of, if not, my favorite all-time Tar Heels. I wish them all nothing but the best at the next level! Lastly, no word on whether Danny is going to test the waters are not.

  22. Wadsworth says:

    I would be curious to know if Green’s decision to stay or go is based in any part on Ellington’s decision. With Ellington, Green will be forced to compete with Ginyard and potentially Davis for time at the 3. Without Ellington, Green could be a starting 2 next year, which would be a much more natural fit for where he will play in the NBA.

  23. C. Michael says:

    Asheville, what do you based your postulation on? All recent info (at least that I’ve seen) seems to point towards at least 3 of the 4 coming back.

  24. Asheville Heel says:

    Sorry, “or not”!

  25. Tar Heel Fan says:

    And I am not willing to write off the 2008-09 team as a non-contender simply based on the defection of Lawson alone. I know people say he is the lynch pin, I have said so myself but at the same time a very experienced team of juniors and seniors can do a lot of damage in the NCAA Tournament and if Bobby Frasor is healthy he might be steady enough to get the job done. Remember, the FF is a crapshoot and everyone is losing people. I would be hard pressed to find the mix of talent and experience UNC would bring back even if Lawson were to leave and the other three return.

  26. C. Michael says:

    A PG combo of Bobby Frasor and Larry Drew is much better than the PG combo of a frosh Frasor and QT was on 2006. Plus, across the board, the supporting cast will be FAR better than it was in 2006. No reason next years team can’t win 30 w/o Lawson, and like you said, the tourney is a crapshoot, anyway!

  27. Josh Bowling says:

    We are standing OUTSIDE of next year’s ncaa sweet sixteen.

  28. Josh Bowling says:

    ^^^^^^

    Unless these Freshmen come in and play like the group (Tyler, Danny, Marcus) did in 06.

  29. C. Michael says:

    52- I saw that too. European’s take the cake when it comes to being lunatic sports fans, or maybe it is just being lunatics, in general… 😉

    Josh – Right now, UNC is a projected 1-seed ( http://sports.espn.go.com/ncb/bracketology ), so unless Zeller/Davis/Drew are alias’ for Wallace/Stackhouse/McGinnis, I think UNC should be fine!

  30. scl11 says:

    Name the 16 teams better with Carolina.

  31. scl11 says:

    Sorry, name the 16 teams better than Carolina

  32. 52BigGameJames says:

    I think Josh is having trouble staying in the moment.

  33. 52BigGameJames says:

    CM–do they build “moats” around their basketball courts? I’ve seen a ref or two I’d like to go “English soccer” on!

  34. heels fan says:

    I disagree that Hansbrough can’t increase his draft position by coming back next year. I’m not saying he will vault to a top 5 pick but what if he adds a consistent 3-point shot to his game? How about adding another move driving to the rim other than the spin-left thing he always does? His shot blocking isn’t a strength either.

    Those are just a few things he could work on and its not like he is a slacker and would goof off the whole summer. He has consistently improved every year and I don’t see why it wouldn’t happen again and his extra work would probably result in a contract that paid a few hundred thousand more a year if not more.

  35. 52BigGameJames says:

    glad I’m not the only one–how about being able to body people out of position in the post? better passing would be of benefit as well

  36. What if Tyler, Ty, Wayne, and Danny all leave?

  37. C. Michael says:

    Then someone is very bad at math… the number of actual first round picks << the number of potential first round picks + 4 UNC Tar Heels.

  38. 52BigGameJames says:

    just a thought gang: Tyler comes back, and with some more inside help (read: freedom to foul) decides to turn his “magnifying glass” on the defensive side of his game. Who here doubts if he makes his mind up he could become one of the best defensive players in the land? What does that spell for opponents. Plus, the added benefit of Tyler finally being able to dish out some of what he’s been taking!

  39. C. Michael says:

    Agreed, 100%. Also could envision UNC going big and having Tyler play a hybrid 3-4. I was really impressed with his lateral quickness this year and have no doubt he could guard people on the wing. He’s every bit as quick as Battier was.

  40. DeanForever says:

    What if Tyler, Ty, Wayne, and Danny all stay? Is THIS the scenerio that many are thinking about, but afraid to even entertain? The way this is all playing out looks like the following will happen:

    1. Ty Lawson will announce his return.
    2. Wayne Ellington will test the waters, but will return when enough pro scouts are caught looking at either their paperwork (either doodles or the time slot for Chris-Douglas Roberts to ball) or their watches.
    3. Tyler Hansbrough will test the waters (which makes sense), but will come back to play for all the glory (which, strangely enough, makes more sense when you consider who he is).
    4. Danny Green will also test his abilities, which are abundant, but I don’t see him being influenced by going to a contender (in this year’s draft). I think that he has just a good a chance to come back next year, get drafted (by a mid-level team such as Indiana) and work his way into some decent minutes. We can speculate that he would get drafted to a better team this year, but (and we all can agree on this) he won’t be a starter. It’s quite likely that Danny Green will play for a few different teams before his NBA days are done.

    So, omigosh, like, they’re all gonna come back!!!

  41. C. Michael says:

    DeanForever,

    I’m not sure I can be objective here, but I have a hard, hard, time finding anything in your post that I could disagree with!!

  42. We’re all dreaming here. Nothing wrong with that. But, the chance of Tyler coming back is probably not as good as the chance that he will leave. Yes, he could benefit the Carolina team by picking up better defensive skills, but what would that do for him in the NBA? The only improvements he could make to up his stock would be to get a better 3 and to add a move. That and mastering the ability to walk on water may get him in the low teens range for the draft next season.

  43. C. Michael says:

    But in a very real sense, it is not about Tyler (or any Heel) getting better… it is about the 2009 draft being MUCH weaker. Most of the Heels are moving up 4-6 slots just based on who is leaving this year.

  44. 52BigGameJames says:

    I totally disagree ATH. Almost nothing in your post I agree with.

  45. 52BigGameJames says:

    and I’m not being dismissive or argumentative.

  46. DeanForever says:

    C.Michael,

    Exactly. You saved me a post there. Nice.

    Anxious Tar Heel,

    Think about the whole “improving his defense” argument. We saw that he could switch on screens and/or guard smaller/quicker players (okay, I AM referring to the Duke game at Cameron and YES, I know that Greg Paulus is only worthy of one of those adjectives), or guard bigger players (Character was probably the most recent true big man…the KU boys were just freaks). However, there needs to be a case for him improving his defensive speed. Who can he help shut down in the league right now? Is he going to get a defensive assignment on Stoudamire? Boozer? Even Drew Gooden for that matter. One could retort by saying, “well, what’s another year of college ball going to do for him in that department?” I then get to say that another year at UNC means that he would be playing a lot more than not (weird rhyme there), and that is important.
    I think that Tyler would like to play before the scouts just to see where his game needs to go for next year. He will take his bumps, show that hustle of his, sweat, get bumped around, and maybe hit an outside J or two. Yet, I don’t see the collective opinion of the scouts changing that much by seeing the obvious. Unless he does perform the art of walking on water (which would be cool), I can’t see him overly impressing anyone with his game; more specifically, his defensive quickness. Just throw Brandon Rush and Arhtur back at him and he’ll announce his return.

  47. 52BigGameJames says:

    meanwhile, over in Durham…

    Tom (Houston): Dana, last year it seemed that Duke over-achieved (lots of credit to K implementing a new style and being successful with that small unathletic team), but what about next year? They still have no big man to fill the gap. More over-achieving or is Duke a legit threat now that they are a year older?

    SportsNation Dana O’Neil: (2:05 PM ET ) Tom: I’m hearing rumors of another player looking to bolt alongside Taylor King, so I’m curious to see how that plays out. Otherwise, the Achilles heel remains – no big man, too many outside shooters. That said, yea, they’ll be older and more experienced which helps.

  48. Tar Heel Fan says:

    Would that be the Lance Thomas is thinking about transferring rumor? I also saw some message board banter about Nolan Smith at one point as well.

  49. 52BigGameJames says:

    not sure–just caught a glimpse on another board. As much pressure as there will be in CH should everyone return, it will be nothing compared to the boiler room in Dur-Ham if K doesn’t right the ship.

  50. tarheeler4life says:

    For one thing, I’m not ignorant. Don’t get me wrong, Tyler is one helluva college player. I just think that if he does get into the NBA and I’m sure he will, he’s not going to get any playing time and I don’t think he’s going to really amount to anything. Though, I must say that he really has nothing else to prove in the college level besides winning the national championship and being the all time scoring leader of Carolina, in that case, he should go.

  51. Johnny says:

    I would’ve said the same thing about Nick Collison, who is (or was, or might be) playing up here in Seattle when he came out of college. But Nick has turned into a solid if not spectacular NBA player. Up until this year, he was probably the only guy on the Sonics’ roster that anyone wanted to trade for other than expiring contracts. I think Tyler is of the same mold and will have a good NBA career.

  52. Josh Bowling says:

    Likewise Johnny. Let’s not sell the achievement of being all time scorer at UNC short. That is one hell of an accomplishment to shoot for, no pun intended.

  53. Josh Bowling says:

    There is no way in heaven that we are preseason number one. Hansbrough, Ellington, Lawson gone, I don’t see us finishing in the top 4 in the ACC, let alone number one in the nation. You can tell that blog or ESPN site, or whatever it is that they are selling the big 3 short if they think that those players can leave and we are still number one. Just doesn’t add up to me, unless you think that the 3 coming in are better than the ones departing.

  54. C. Michael says:

    Josh,

    It is not that ESPN thinks the new players are better, it is they, like most others, think that UNC will return their team intact.

  55. Tar Heel Fan says:

    Given the perceived weakness of the ACC, a starting lineup of Frasor, Ginyard, Green, Thompson and Stepheson with a bench of Graves, Copeland, Zeller, Davis and Drew should be a top three ACC team. Wake would become the favorite with VT and Duke being good but Duke still needs an inside presence and VT will lose Deron Washington.

  56. C. Michael says:

    Jamont Gordon just declared, as well, which would be a big loss for the Hokies, but I have to imagine he’ll come back.

  57. Tar Heel Fan says:

    CM,

    Jamont Gordon plays for Miss State.

    Jamon Gordon played for VT last season(2006-07) but graduated.

  58. C. Michael says:

    D’oh!!!

    Haha, see what all these rumors are doing to my brain!! 😉

  59. Josh Bowling says:

    C. Michael, I hope you are right on!

  60. Leann says:

    In reference to my previous post about the letter from Danny Green’s father. It was an ESPN article. It was Coach Rob not Coach Holladay who opened his letter and it was during last season. Here’s the excerpt and the link to the whole article:

    http://sports.espn.go.com/ncb/ncaatourney08/news/story?id=3310034

    Carolina had won the NCAA title in 2005, Williams’ second year back in Chapel Hill. With a 10-point lead and 6:31 left in the Regional Final against Georgetown last year, a trip to the Final Four seemed all but certain. And that’s when Williams watched Green rush down the court, pull up far behind the arc, and launch a 3-pointer that never had a chance.

    The rest of the game was like a bad movie. Carolina missed its next shot and six of its next seven to send the game into OT, then missed all but two of the next 12 to hand the game — and a Final Four ticket — to the Hoyas. Green’s mistake certainly wasn’t the reason Carolina lost — there was plenty of blame to go around for this collapse — but it was the one Williams called “one of the worst shots in the history of college basketball” when he met with reporters after the game. “I don’t know what he was thinking,” Williams said.

    It took a few days, but Williams softened. He remembered earlier in the year when Steve Robinson, his top assistant, got annoyed with a letter from Danny’s father, complaining that his son’s minutes were down. Williams also received a letter that day, but he figured Big Danny was just venting, so he never opened his. He knew Little Danny didn’t have the same luxury.

    “I don’t think I’ll ever get over that shot,” Williams told Danny later that spring. “But given all that’s gone on, you had a pretty doggone good year. Just go home and forget about basketball for a while.

    “You have enough other things to worry about.”

  61. Leann says:

    And on a different note, while I’m all for knowing this week if they are coming back or declaring, the idea of them declaring but not hiring agents is not something I look forward to. It basically turns into nearly 2 months more of excruciating wonder.

  62. scl11 says:

    Truth be told, only Ellington, Lawson, and Green could improve their draft position by returning, therefore, they should return and Tyler should leave. Tyler can only hurt his draft position by returning, not drastically improve it. But again it is a personal decision for all involved. But from a pure “draft stock” prospective, Tyler should go.

    IMHOP, I think Tyler leaves and the other 3 return, when all is said and done.

  63. Johnny says:

    Ah, but if it is a weaker draft next year (and that is the speculation) Tyler could improve his position even if he doesn’t improve as a player next year.

  64. 52 Big Game, I appreciate your disagreement, but would like to see what you have to say in response instead of just flat out dismissing without an alternate. What other things does he need to improve on that are offensive that he actually CAN do? Part of Tyler is not his extreme skills but his extreme competitiveness and intensity.

    And I am not saying that Tyler doesn’t have room to improve defensively. He does. My point is how much is that going to get him as far as being seen as a better NBA player? Probably not a lot.

    And that is a great point about a potentially weaker draft next year, C. Michael. That’s why everyone would benefit from staying around and waiting. BUT, how heavy potentially is the draft on 3-4’s in 2009? I don’t know off-hand, but I’ll look and let you know.

  65. Leann says:

    Offensively, I know I heard all season about Tyler needing to continue to extend his jump shot to beyond the 3 point line because the guys in the NBA his size have all learned how to shoot that 3 pointer. We know he can do it because he shoots about 100 of them every day before practice as part of his shooting routine, but he needs to get more confident and capable with shooting them in game situations. Standing there, squaring up, and making a three with no one in your face or guarding you isn’t the same as being able to make one in a game.

    Otherwise, I agree that he could use some work on his defensive skills…especially shot blocking, but that’s going to take some work with his vertical leap as well.

  66. 52BigGameJames says:

    http://www.nba.com/history/players/cowens_bio.html

    http://www.nba.com/history/50greatest.html

    I’m going to just start using “Dave Cowens” as my reply when answering those who are trying to convince everyone that Tyler “won’t amount to anything in the NBA”…who in his right mind would’ve said that Boozer would’ve not only made it in the NBA, but actually become an impact player? I could go on with examples, but it’s wasted breath.

  67. Chris says:

    I’ll buy everyone here a meal and all you want to drink if Danny Green gets drafted by anyone in this year’s draft. We’ll go to the Angus Barn and reserve the downstairs wine room. Danny’s problem is that he’s not the caliber of athlete that survives the NBA. He’s not quick enough and can’t jump high enough for the NBA. He played well in several games this year but was supported bya load of talent that took defensive pressure off of him. Imagine a one on one game between him and C D-R, and that’s the ugly picture of his chances in the NBA. Ideas like Danny Green going to the NBA are the result of too much time to sit around and speculate before these guys have to decide. And again, in my humble opinion, Tyler will have a long duable productive career in the NBA……..if George Lynch can do what he did, Tyler certainly has the potential for so much more.

  68. 52BigGameJames says:

    ATH–the Cowens analogy is most appropriate here–almost identical physical size. Tyler actually has better offensive skills, and that will be an enhancement to his pro game, but where I see him being an asset, is exactly like Cowens–a terrific rebounder (which he already is), but also a vicious defender (which he is not). He is a better perimeter defender at this point. It’s already been referenced, but I don’t think he can “manufacture” speed, or a better leap. I see his defensive progression being more in the positioning and jockeying mode–ie–playing smart. The key with UNC (provided he returns of course) is that he hopefully won’t have to be so worried about fouls. I’d love to see him turned loose as the weak-side defender on occasion. I realize the Pro game has better athletes since Cowens playing days, but not so much different that a more skilled version of Cowens can contribute in a big way in this day & age. Understand–because we’ve been so dependent on his offense, and he’s had relatively little post-help, we really havent’ seen what he’s capable of defensively. That presents a BIG gap in his game, and also his pro potential…IMO.

  69. Chris says:

    I may be crazy but I think about Tyler and a comparion to Carlos Boozer. Tyler certainly at the end of his college career will have had a much better college career than Boozer. Boozer went 35th in the 2002 draft to Cleveland, and we all know the story from there. How in the hell did Boozer do what he did? Now I certainly don’t think that after 2 years in the NBA Tyler will be offered 68 mill for 6 years, but I have to think that he’ll find a team in the NBA that fits and he will with his attitude do well.

  70. C. Michael says:

    Chris- the Boozer comparison comes up often when my dad and I talk about UNC, too.

  71. DeanForever says:

    Although he is a unique collegiate talent, Tyler does fit a certain NBA mold. This prototype (much better word than “mold”) is represented by players with solid NBA upside and those who’s upside was reached in the NCAAs. On the solid side of the coin, you have players like Drew Gooden, Nick Collison, Corlis Williamson, Larry Johnson, and Elton Brand. All of these guys could take you inside-out, or bang down low and battle for rebounds. Williamson was as tenacious as Hansbrough, but he had better, more versatile (and experienced) big men around him. Gooden and Collison played together, and both could shoot from mid-range and grab rebounds. Putting Johnson and Brand in there (instead of, say, Carlos Drunkard) might seem like a stretch, but if Tyler can build an outside shoot (beyond 15 feet) that is feasible. I’m not saying that Brand can shoot the three (he can’t and therefore he doesn’t), but Brand has always played to his strengths, which are a little bit of everything down low: quickness to the glass, great timing on shot blocks, and enough muscle to get where he wants to get.
    Tyler has a little bit of all the above in his game, but I still think that he lacks the ability to defend the more athletic forwards in the NBA. I mean, there aren’t a lot of Michael Cage’s left in the league. 52BGJ is correct in saying that you cannot acquire speed, and Tyler would certainly be exploited. The reason why I brought up defensive speed (in an earlier post) is that, even though he won’t magically become a quicker defender on the perimeter, Tyler can still learn how to read defenses and prepare for quicker dudes making cuts; such as, backing off the quicker players on a switch and forcing them to hit from outside. Although I loved it when Tyler would steal the ball (last year), it always gave me a headache when guys got around him. Imagine him switching off a screen and getting Tracy McGrady. Yikes.
    To finish my comparison, let me point to the lesser of the Hansbrough prototypes, the guys who hit their ceiling in college. Don McLean, Danny Fortson, Raef LaFrentz, Billy Owens, and Ed O’Bannon (sp). McLean and Fortson are easy solves, in that they had little in the triple-H department (heart, hustle, and heroics). Owens struggled early in that old Golden State run-and-shoot offense and never found his identity in the league. LaFrentz was already beset by injuries coming into the NBA, so that really reduced his chances of being a consistent force. I put O’Bannon in there because everyone built him up as a huge team player, making sacrifices (which, if you knew anything about Jim Harrick’s practices, that “team player” bit was probably a bit exagerrated) so that other teammates could score more. Tyler too is a team player, but he also knows that he is the man and needs to take a game over at times.
    Well, I’ve written another damn novel. Some of those comparisons may seem odd, but, what the hell. Too much time on my hands and no Heels B-ball leads one to make such comparisons.

  72. DeanForever says:

    Come to think of it, Don McLean was more of a Laettne prototype, with all the arrogance and diva-like tantrums. The only difference would be the postseason legacies of those two ladies.

  73. DeanForever says:

    Laettner, not “Laettne.” I’m sure that not a single regular on this site minded.

  74. C. Michael says:

    Actually, I kind of enjoyed it… 😉

  75. 52Big, I can see your point with Cowens, although that was a differrent NBA altogether. And I am in no way saying Tyler cannot amount to anything in the pros. He won’t be a superstar, but he will be a guy that is scrappy (I hate that word and don’t believe I just used it) and will be able to go after rebounds and get some scoring just by pure will. And if he gets his 3 point shot in order in a game situation, he will be difficult to guard. Thus my main argument for him to stay. Get another wrinkle or two in his game and then play the 3 or 4 (with Tyler Zeller adding some big man minutes underneath Hans will be able to step out a little) and just dominate by threatening with the 3 and the ability to drive and shoot. And rebound. With the right situation (strong team where he doesn’t have to carry a big load), given his desire to work harder than anyone else, he could be a 12 point-10 rebound guy off the bench and have a long career. Nothing wrong with that.

    BUT, I still stand by my statement that him staying, even if he does improve what he is able to improve, will not be enough to place him as a high pick. By high I mean top-10.

    Nothing wrong with him testing the waters right now and seeing how he can fare in Orlando. But I hope he comes back.

  76. 52BigGameJames says:

    I already addressed that, and I stand by my contention that it’s not so different–we;re not talking about the Chaimberlain/Russell era here, even if it seems like ancient history to you—if it was relevant, then Boozer wouldn’t have made it. I don’t think he’ll be a superstar either, and I do agree that with his skill-set, he will (like Boozer) need to find a good fit, but hey, that’s the case with many players. IF, and it’s a big if, he demonstrates the same kind of improvement & dominance on defense next season, as he has on offense, then I say all bets are off. The right team, with the right need, at the right time, and the other bigs coming out–it all factors into the mix. I’ve learned not to bet against the guy. His “big-ticket” will be as a defender and rebounder imho, and it bears repeating–he hasn’t had the opportunity to show what he can do on that end at UNC yet.

  77. 52BigGameJames says:

    is it possible to get a progress report on Orlando? anyone? I think he returns regardless, but I would love to see how he fares nonetheless.

  78. CarolinaGirl says:

    Am I the only one who thinks that by testing the waters, Danny is not seriously considering leaving early but instead trying to get a feel for what he needs to improve and where he stands in the scheme of things? I think it’s just for him to know what he needs to do this season to put himself in better position. But that’s just my opinion.

    I hope they’re right about Ty, though. Tyler I feel like has pretty much earned the right to do whatever he wants.

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