Friday, June 20, 2008

Irish Warriors 2007-2008 Report Card: Baron Davis

So good he owns former MVP's

He averaged 21.8 points in 39 minutes, his highest marks in those categories since 2003-04, whe averaged 22.9 points in 40.1 minutes. He also set a career high in rebounds, 2.7 to 1 assist to turnover ratio, 33% from 3, 4.7 rebounds per game. were all impressive stats compiled. Yet what held baron back was the lack of a true backup PG which meant unfortunately he was ran into the ground. To an extent you can't blame Nelson one bit you play your best players and hope they can mantain their athletiscm but during the Nuggets, Spurs and Dallas games Baron wasn't the Baron of last season looking totally wiped out as he completed the unusualness of completing a injury free season

But where Baron falls short — and this is only a shortcoming because he is expected to be elite — was being a point guard. Baron proved two things this season: 1) he is still a top-notched scorer and 2) he can stay healthy (though that is relative). Unfortunately for the Warriors, they only need No. 2. Golden State doesn’t need Baron to be a dominant scorer, but a playmaker. They are better when he’s not the leading scorer. His assists (7.6) dropped under 8.3 for the first time since he joined the Warriors. His field goal percentage also dropped (42.6) fairly significantly off last season’s career-best 43.9 percent. They needed him to make stuff happen for everyone else, not get his. Last year, he played like Chris Paul. This year, he was Gilbert Arenas. They are much tougher to defend when he’s racking up 15 assists than when he’s scoring 40. Plus, he was bad down the stretch.

Oene lingering question this year is whether Baron should opt out. If he remains a Warrior, we have little incentive to move him. He’ll be motivated in a contract year and, should the Ws decide to part ways at the end of next season, the team would gain tremendous cap flexibility. There’s also the lingering basketball issue of how poorly this team played without Baron on the court for long stretches and the absence of another true point guard ready to fill the role. I’m not denying that the team has problems with Baron running the show, but they’re still not as large as those when he’s completely unavailable. Baron gets one more year of Cohan’s money, the Warriors have one more year of taking the good with the bad in Baron’s game, and then everyone gets to sort things out for real next summer.

A mixed year for Baron but there was no doubt he was excellent before he was run into the ground. Here's hoping we pick up a dependable backup PG to avoid this scenario

Overall Grade B-

Irish Warriors 2007-2008 report Card archive
Chris Mullin C+

Kelenna Azubuike C-

Matt Barnes D-

Marco Bellineli D+

Andris Biedrins A-

Austin Croshere C-

Monta Ellis A+

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