Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Breaking Down Guys Who Will, In All Likelihood, Soon Be Cut

Sekou Smith went to the Hawks' practice facility Monday to check out who has gained weight (Josh Smith, weighing in at a muscular 240, how gaining muscle will improve his jump shot is an unanswered question), lost weight (Tyronn Lue, down to 177), and who is going to training camp with little or no chance of making the roster.

There are some interesting guys participating, a couple of whom could be useful should they get to play in games that count. Obviously, Joe Johnson, Speedy Claxton, Josh Smith, Marvin Williams, Zaza Pachulia, Lorenzen Wright, Josh Childress, Tyronn Lue, Shelden Williams and Salim Stoudamire are making the team. Future Arkansas RimRocker Solomon Jones, probably will also. So the Hawks can keep up to four more guys, with useless duo Royal Ivey and Esteban Batista both already under contract.

Greek center Andreas Glyniadakis played reasonably well in the D-League last year (22.2 mpg, 10.5 ppg, 4.8 rpg, 1.2 bspg, 53.5 fg%, 81.6 ft%). His size (7-1, 280) and Esteban Batista's ineptitude make him the most likely to stick.

Lionel Chalmers shot the ball horribly in limited minutes with the Clippers in 2005. His college career leads one to believe that he has the ability to do better than that. He played pretty well for Phoenix's summer league team and is (like so many others) undoubtedly a better point guard than Royal Ivey. The Hawks will probably find some dumb reason (like not wanting another small point guard) to keep Ivey over Chalmers.

Cedric Bozeman was once better point guard than Ivey, too. Injuries have severely limited Bozeman's athleticism and versatility to the point where he didn't even rate a draft bio (there were 120) on NBA.com this summer.

Shawnee Mission West product Matt Freije can shoot, or at least he could in college. His 57% true-shooting percentage at Vanderbilt didn't translate in his brief trial with the Hornets in 2005 where his TS% fell to 35.6. He'll never get to the line in the NBA as often as he did in college and he'll probably never rebound enough to survive a cold shooting week.

For reasons I don't understand, Sekou Smith is enthusiastic about Kaniel Dickens, a small forward with the game of a college power forward. I doubt there's room for him behind Joe Johnson, Josh Smith, Josh Childress, and Marvin Williams.

Andre Brown is basically Shelden Williams if Shelden Williams didn't block shots or make free throws. Unlike Batista and Solomon Jones, the franchise has nothing invested in Brown and won't keep him around.

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