James Harden Off My Draft Board
I kept hearing Raptor fans talking up James Harden and that he was the guy for the Raptors. After watching to less than impressive performances in the NCAA tournament from him for ASU. I am not convinced. What people do in the NCAA Tournament means a lot to me and scouts tend to look at it close as well. What do you do when the lights are the brightest? How do you perform under the glare of them? The answer for James Harden is not so hot. If the Raptors are some how lucky enough to hit the lotto and get in the top 3. The guy that I would like to see is Haseem Thabeet. The big guy from UConn is a defensive beast and has drawn comparisons to Mutumbo. Not the old Mutumbo you see now, the you finger wagging shoot blocking force. If not so lucky and Raptors slot in around where they are suppose to select which would be 7th currently I believe. The guy that I think might make sense as much as I hate the school is Gerald Henderson. The Duke product is a slashing scoring guy that sticks out in a Duke system that is not exactly designed for a player with his skill set. Yet he still funds ways to be very effective in it. Those are some early draft thoughts from me. There is lots of time before the draft to break down the entire draft class. But those are some thoughts on 3 guys that should be hearing their name called in June.
Nathan Jawai Back From His D-League Mission
I was surprised to see Nathan Jawai in a suit at the ACC on Sunday. He had a nice run in the D-League and put up a some decent numbers. What I also learn about Nate is as nice as he is the big guy has a temper on the floor. It was not an uncommon thing to see technical foul and Nathan Jawai in an NBDL boxscore. I welcome that kind of aggression and anger to this squad. Raptors need much more of it. Pops Mensah-Bonsu and Nathan Jawai are two of the bigs the Raptors should have moving forward. Both bring some defense and rebounding which have been sorely lacking on this basketball team. Jawai still has a long way to go. However he does have an impressive skill set and showed it much more in the D-League than he had with the Raptors. That was the point of his trip to Idaho in the first place. But he is heading back to Idaho and was in town for some tests and should be back with Stampede by mid-week according to Doug Smith in the Star.
He has averaged in 10 games:
12.2 points, 6.5 rebounds and 1.2 blocks in an average of 25 minutes on the floor.
It will be a key summer for Nathan to take all that he has learned this season and apply it this off-season. I have not given up on the big man and think he can come back next season and hopefully have an impact. Upon further review it seems Nathan may be sticking around as Andrea Bargnani missed yesterday with a heel injury. Jawai may stick around for the end of the season and get some time as Raps reality sets in as a playoffs math is almost done.
Sorry for the lack of production on behalf of the Dino Blogger over the weekend. I am always working hard though know that. Sometimes it takes awhile to see that as I do a lot of work behind the scenes in getting guests for the Dino Nation Blog and setting up things that hopeful will add to you enjoyment of this blog and keep you coming back for more. In what has been a very tough season I am grateful for all of you that keep coming back. It is always good motivation to keep working hard and grinding it out. Raptor fans are first rate and have a ton of passion, love and support for this team and hopefully this blog as well.