My candidate is Kendrick Perkins. After his bar fight, dehydration episode, and not ever working out or playing with any of the Thunder squad, I thought he was just mailing it in and would be out of shape. Dude looks jacked and ready to go. Too bad we don't get to see him against Bynum and Gasol tonight. Thanks lockout.
Who do you think (not hope) will have a bounce back season? Who will regress from last year?
Kris Humpries, as in he will "bounce back" to the mediocre player he once was....
For real though, I think it will be Tyreke Evans. He had a lot of injury issues last season, and shot nearly .50 less efficiently than he did last season from the field. This season, hopefully he will utilize his excellent finishing ability and not settle for so many jumpers
I'm hoping Kris Humpries doesn't bounce backwards lol... He could be a cheap option for the Pacers at power forward to help out with rebounding.
But my bounceback nomination goes to Greg Oden. The lockout benefits him because he probably wasn't going to start the season on time anyway. I ran into him not too long ago and he looks great. He works out like a man possessed.
Crossing my fingers. I am DYING to see this guy get back on the basketball court and show his stuff. People look at his statistics and say that he was a bust or a disappointment. That may be true considering his expectations were to challenge Dwight Howard and Yao Ming as the best Center in the league. But, he was really coming into his own before the last time he went down. His stats through the last 7 games before his injury against Houston were 15.6 ppg, 9.6 rpg, 2.4 bpg, 62% FG, 77.5% FT in 26 mpg. So, if the guy is playing just over half of a game, he is getting about a double double and a couple blocks. How many Centers can you say that about right now? As of last year, the only players averaging near that in Greg's minute range were Kris Humphries (without the defense), Marcus Camby (without the offense) and Reggie Evans (with even less offense).
Having a big guy like Greg Oden, if healthy, could pay off big time. I think that Tyson Chandler absolutely destroyed every Center he faced in the play-offs. Bynum was his closest match-up, but I feel he killed Kendrick Perkins. Perkins averaged 4 and 5 against Dallas, looking incredibly outmanned against Tyson while providing very little resistance defensively. I understand that he was coming back from injury, and he may have a bounce back season, but I think this is a sign that long, athletic players could give Perkins fits. Even an unhealthy Andrew Bynum gave him issues the year before, knee injury not withstanding in Game 6.
All I know, is that if Portland does indeed play OKC, with a healthy Greg Oden and a healthy Kendrick Perkins, I like Oden. He is incredibly difficult to box out and his combination of size and athleticism is just about second to no one at the Center position. Dwight Howard is quicker and more athletic, but he does not have Greg's girth, plain and simple. Greg was able to push around the likes of Carlos Boozer and Nene as a rookie, plus he always seemed to be able to crush Joakim Noah. He had a 24 point (7-8 FG, 10-12 FT), 12 rebound and 2 block against Noah in a Blazer win a few games before getting hurt. Noah had 7 points, 8 boards, 5 fouls and absolutely no answer for Greg down low (If you want to blame foul trouble, Noah played 33 minutes to Greg's 27). If Greg does indeed get the green light to come back, it could mean huge things for the Blazers. It is incredibly hard to rank Greg as a Center, seeing that he has lost so much time and been absolutely injury prone. But, if he is healthy, he will be a match-up problem for everyone he faces and if he does indeed come near the averages he was putting up in the last 7 games before we last saw him, I believe that would make him one of the best post players in the league.
@IndianaBasketball: Glad to hear it man. I know you have always had Greg's back as well. Really hope that he is healthy, because if he is, I know he will be ready.
Definitely Andray Blatche. Everyone thinks he sucks because he had a down year where he was injured. He said he's been making changes during the offseason. He cut out the bad influences in his life, and has been working on his body (gettig in shape and gettings stronger. He's also been trying to be a leader, and set up players-only workouts during the lockout, but only two of his teammates showed up. http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wizards-insider/post/andray-blatche-i-have-to-make-changes/2011/09/10/gIQAMhF1HK_blog.html
He's one of the most skilled and complete big men in the NBA. He might have the best handles .for a PF in NBA history (maybe Lamar Odom has better handles), he's very skilled in the post, can pass, shoot, and is an underrated defender when healthy. I'm telling you guys, that foot injury really set him back. If he's truly lived up to his word, no doubt he'll be an All-Star next season. He has all the talent in the world.
And Perkins looks pretty good in that vid. He looks slimmer and more toned. Last year, he looked really slow, and it hurt his defense, so the him shedding excess weight should help him a lot. I thought he was overrated last year, but maybe he can turn things around if he's fully healthy.
I see marc gasol, serge ibaka being terrific this season.
I am afraid to see zach randolph and carlos boozer facing physical issues (injuries, weight).
Steph' curry will benefit from mark jackson new coaching and will have a great season.
I think kevin love could benefit from rubio's arrival in minny.
@mikeyvthedon : agree with you on oden's promise before injuries and I hope to see him bounce back but he's only beginning to run...
The longer this lockout goes, the more it benefits Greg Oden. I'd give him until about mid to late Jan to be ready to go.
I think it's great they've been this patient with him because I don't think the team doctors in Portland were doing right. I think his last micro surgery was caused by mismanagement of his broken patella injury... And the broken patella injury was caused do to mismanagement of the hairline fracture (team doctors missed it) he'd suffered. Not having any contact with the Portland doctors and having contacts with his doctors in Indiana/LA have probably been the best thing for Oden.
He looks real good though. He's not gained any weight. You can tell he's been lifting weights (low weight, max reps to get ripped and not necesarily bulked). He hasn't been running, BUT he's been walking and light jogging for awhile now.
Something tells me it will be surely sunny in Wisconsin. Milwaukee, Wisconsin, that is. I believe both Andrew Bogut and Brandon Jennings will bounce back next season. Lack of NBA means that Bogut has a great amount of time to regenerate his injury-prone body. He's already a top defender, just can never stay healty. Also, BJ will have time to work on his inconsistent offense.
At this point I just hope there's the opportunity for players to have a bounce back season...My guy would be Andrew Bynum, if he can stay healthy and get the opportunities he deserves, he can become a star. Staying healthy is a BIG if.
I think Oden gained too much weight. That's what led to the broken patella. I can't find the article right now, but I read somewhere that he gained too much muscle in his lower body, which caused the patella to split. And you could even tell on the court. I think his body got too big for his frame. He looked so filled out especially in the upper body He may need to shed a few pounds so he body can carry its weight better, I've seen that happen to guys in the military they gain too much weight too fast and next thing you know they have stress fractures. Even coach McMillan was concered about how much weight he had gained after his first microfracture surgery. He said he wanted him to be wiry strong instead of bulky like he became. Portland's medical and training staff is TERRIBLE!
If he can keep his weight down, it will be good for his career. It's a shame Portland has mishandled him like this. He could've been the next great center.
Evan Turner will show why he was #2 pick
Not as long as Iggy is there and Jrue Holiday is handling the ball majority of the time. Turner must learn to operate off-ball.
Kobe Bean Bryant. He had a good statistical output with terrific efficiency this past season with apparently some great clutch stats. But one thing he didn't do anymore was strike fear in the oppositions hearts anymore as he was no longer dominating a game from begining to end like he had in previous seasons. Not to mention his knee wasn't fully healthy, hands have become mangled, and he even had an ankle injury. Recently former Michael Jordan now Kobe Bryant physical trainer Tim Grover was asked in an interview with The Chicago Tribune about Kobe being over the hill. Grover replied in a emotional manor
"Lets get one thing straight.." , Grover said, " This long summer has done wonders for Kobe's mind and body. His knee is the best I've ever seen it. Just a couple days ago I had some Mcdonald's All Americans in here.. and Kobe beat them in a dunk contest. I wont even talk about how bad they got it during the One on One drills.. Yea, his finger is still rotten, but he's found a way to adjust and his jumper is back. Kobe is back.. and he's gonna be MVP again. You can bet on it"
I can't find a link to the article if anyone can find the exact link and post it for me, I'd be much obliged.
He's pretty bouncy
I also think Gilbert Arenas is a candidate. About a month after the NBA season, D12 said that Gil already lost about 20 lbs, and there was a video of him boxing with Patrick Ewing Jr., and he looked like he was in pretty good shape.
But I think in order for him to flourish, he needs to start. I think the first step is to trade Jameer, because SVG loves him, and I don't think he'd bench him for Gil. I like Jameer, but Gilbert at his top level is easily more talented than him, and they need to see what Gil can do. Gil can be the key to whether Dwight stays in Orlando or not (even though he might not get the chance to prove himself in the lockout drags on for the whole season). But ORL might be able to force Dwight to stay depending on the changes made to the CBA. But like I was saying, it was clear that SVG had Gil on a short leash, and he needs to let Gil do what he does. Now with the extra time he's had to get in shape and rhab that knee, I think he'll be a much better player this season. He might not ever go back to the player that could score 30 on any given night, but I think he'll be a good player next season. Maybe even fringe all-star.
No chance in Cleveland
Sorry, I meant Hell.
I strongly disagree that Andray Blatche " might have the best handles .for a PF in NBA history". But i also do really like blatche as a player when he's not doing something completely....blatche-y. The problem isn't skill it's just that the guy has always been a bonehead decision maker. If he comes back this year with that problem corrected somehow then watch out. To me there are a few guys who have the chance to do big things this year. When healthy, Greg Oden does exactly what portland expected him to do when they drafted him: rebound and block like a mad man. Tyreke evans looks to have a much better year as well and i expect numbers more along the lines of his rookie year if not a bit more assists and a few less points just because the team isn't what it was 2 years ago. Evan Turner is also a guy who HAS to do better this season.
Am i supposed to be impressed? Nobody in that video is playing anywhere near NBA speed, including blatche. Don't get me wrong, workouts are workouts and games are games, we'll just have to wait and see how he shows up this season. like I said, I like blatche, but his biggest flaw isn't something that can be solved by simply working out.
^^nah, not trying to impress anybody. Just trying to show people what he's been doing this offseason. I hear many people saying he has no work ethic and lacks leadership, but him trying to bring the whole team together to work out is showing leadership.
I love that you whole-heartedly stick to your choices on here. I respect that a lot. I've been a huge Blatche critic all last season. I know he has all the tools and he still is young and does not have a hefty contract. But if you see the same Andray Blatche next season (unmotivated, injured, and no significant development on both ends of the floor) then would you consider giving up on him? Preferably for a new PF in this upcoming draft like Jared Sullinger.
I know you have read this but the Wizards are not predicted to make the playoffs. I think they will improve but they lack experience and this is a hella young team so I see them in the lottery as well. (Unless John Wall gets major help from Vesley and McGee and Young). But the way I look at the Wizards right now is that they are set at 4 positions. I don't question any position except
PG - Wall (no brainer)
SG - Crawford/Young (solid players)
SF - Vesley (He will bring energy from day one and get out on the break with Wall)
PF - ???
C - McGee (young and showed good insitincts for shot blocking)
The ???? at the PF is for Blatche. I reall think he holds these guys back BUT hey, if you think he will have a breakout season, then I hope I am wrong and I applaud you for not giving up on him. Unfortunately, the thought of having Jared Sullinger sounds so enticing for this group of Wizards IMO.
^^If he underperformed again (by being lazy, not being injured. Geeting injured wasn't his fault), if there was another good PF available like Sullinger, I'd probably take him, but I believe in Dray. if he played great all year, it would've been with all talent, but with all that happened last year and now that he's finally facing adversity, I think he's motivated and ready to prove the doubters wrong. We'll see though.
I believe Kobe will be better this season as well, but I don't take Tim Grover seriously... He said T-Mac was back too.
Oden did get a little too bulked up, BUT the real reason his patella split was because the training staff missed a thin hairline fracture in his knee after he banged knees with Corey Maggette during his "first" season.
The same thing happened to Blake Griffin. He banged knees with Craig Smith during training camp. He had a small hairline fracture. It then split in half after he landed after the dunk vs the Hornets in the pre-season. His wasn't as bad as Oden's, but it was the same situation.
I believe it, simply because T-mac did play good still. He's no longer the unstoppable scorer he once was, but he's still a 12pt 6 ast player with terrific versatility on the right squads. He'd be great with LAL in a Harper role or with PHX in a secondary ballhandler role running pick and role. Same goes for NYK. Remember, when he was running starting pg this year, he was actually putting up some good numbers.
T-Mac was solid this year, but Grover just hyped T-Mac up a little too much... I remember the article and everything lol. "Mac is back!" Had me all excited lol. He hyped Gilbert Arenas up too. So far the only player that he's hyped up and who lived up to it was D. Wade. D. Wade actually had a MVP season after working out with Grover all summer.
But I do believe Kobe will have a great season and be right there for the MVP award. I think people are making a terrible mistake sleeping on Kobe.
Now that I've actually looked at his numbers between 12-14-2010 and 3-23-11 when he became a CONSISTENT 20+ minute per game player (and at times starter) his numbers were actually pretty damn good.
27 mpg, 13.6 ppg, 4.1rbs, 4.7 apg, 46%fg, 38% 3pt, 84% FT
Call me crazy, I'd imagine had he actually managed to get consistent minutes the entire year, his numbers nmay be even better as he would have been able to get in better shape and log bigger minutes.
I think Rashard Lewis will have a bounce back season. He has apparently been working hard to get his body into shape to play the SF position again, and he should benefit from the open looks John Wall will be able to get him. I don't think his numbers will be eye-popping by any means, but he'll be a key contributor for the Wizards this season.
I also have high hopes for Arenas. He and Jameer will play together more as I don't think Richardson will be retained and a healthy Gilbert beats out Redick still for the starting 2-guard spot. Also, the Magic need to go all in to try and convince Dwight to stick around, so playing someone with a huge talent when healthy is the best option to have some success come playoff time and make Dwight feel more confident for the future.
Tried to think outside the box a little for these, but I agree about the obvious ones like Tyreke too.
jason thompson. would like to see him traded. i think his time in sac-town is coming to an end with the arrival of jj hickson
I hope Greg Oden is healthy again! That guy is a beast and I can't wait to see what he can do in the league. The numbers when he was healthly were really impressive.