Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Ranking the UConn Alumni in the NBA

1. Ray Allen.  No surprise here.  Allen took home the NBA trophy and in the process hit one of the most clutch shots in NBA Finals history, solidifying his legacy as one of the most clutch shooters in the game ever.

2. Rudy Gay.  There is no denying his talent but with the recent allegations that his problems on the court had to do with not wearing corrective lenses, it boggles the mind.  Why would he detriment his team and his game over a pair of glasses? Hopefully he'll bounce back and play well on his new team the Toronto Raptors.

3. Caron Butler.  Last year was supposed to be a breakout year for Butler, but it never worked out.  He was on a talented squad with one of the best point guards in the game, but he couldn't take that next step in his game.  With Butler now in the prime of his career and in his hometown, he might take that leadership role that was expected of him the whole time.

4. Kemba Walker.  There wasn’t a whole lot of talent around Walker last year, but he still finished the season strong and showed promise.  With more scoring options around him this year, he looks primed to have a breakout season that is if he can consistently hit the outside shot.

5. Emeka Okafor.  Steady as they come.  Emeka Okafor is a rock in the locker room and a dependable double-double threat.  He won’t wow you, but he is a high character locker room presence that can help out a young team.

6. Ben Gordon.
  Its been a couple of mediocre years for Gordon.  He can come out and drop thirty a game, but is inconsistent.  That’s why he has garnered the sixth man label throughout his career.

7. Andre Drummond.  It was a surprise rookie year for Drummond and the spacing in the NBA worked in his favor.  He found plenty of opportunities to attack the rim and is a force rebounding the basketball.  He is still a major work in progress but his freshman campaign has put a major spotlight on this up and coming big man.

8. Charlie Villanueva.  Mired in the land of inconsistency, Villanueva can’t find ways to get legitimate playing time.  He has always possessed all the tools, but hasn’t been able to put them all together and has been mired on the bench for several years now.

9. Jeremy Lamb.  Being bounced around from the Rockets to the Thunder hasn’t helped Lamb and he ended up playing in the D-League for much of the season, though he flourished down there and with his play in the summer league, he has earned the right for a chance at the Thunder’s roster.

10. Hasheem Thabeet.  No other UConn Alumni has helped his basketball career more than Thabeet.  He was about to be out of the league, but the Thunder took a chance on the big man and it payed off.  Sure he isn’t going to be a starter, but he is a reliable big man and has begun to rebound much better.

11. A.J. Price.  It was a perfect opportunity for Price last season.  Wall was injured and he was awarded with a ton of minutes.  A.J. produced but not enough to stand out as a player to keep.  He’s been floating around training camps and is hoping to sign with the Timberwolves.

12. Jeff Adrien.  Jeff got some minutes with the Bobcats and did a good enough job.  He is a testament to hard work and perseverance.  He’ll get another opportunity with Charlotte and needs to prove his worth to earn a roster spot.  Unfortunately his height will always cause him to look over his shoulder at the next younger and cheaper power forward.

No comments: