Name: Richard Hamilton
Team: Detroit Pistons
NBA Ranking: 62
Looking Back: Rip had a rough season. He lost his point guard and received Allen Iverson which plays Hamilton’s position. One of them had to take the backseat and Rip was demoted to the bench, which he did grudgingly. The Pistons faltered with the new transition and soon Rip regained his starting status and it resulted in a late season push to the playoffs. He never had a chance and they lost in a horrible series versus the Cavaliers.
The Good: It starts with an impeccable motor. Rip will run his defender through double or triple screens for quick released jumpers. It is impossible to defend and he has it down to a science. He is also a solid defender. Even for his small stature, he doesn’t mind tough man-to-man contact. Even though he is unorthodox in his free throw shooting, he is clutch.
The Bad: Rip is dependant on his jumper and if it isn’t there then his game suffers. He isn’t as prolific a three point threat as he should be. Not very athletic, Rip doesn’t have an above the rim aspect to his game. He’s also not very good at taking his man off the dribble and needs to have specific plays designed for him.
Looking Ahead: He’ll need to adjust to the new look Pistons. Rip will need to become a leader on this team, which is something he hadn’t needed to do with the Billups and Wallace on the team. This is a playoff quality squad but they’ll need to find their defensive identity to become a real contender in the East.