Monday, June 25, 2007

Wilson Chandler

I left Wilson Chandler out of my second-tier small forwards post on purpose. He's not one of the 10 best small forwards in the draft. However, Chad Ford's reporting/speculating that Chandler has a first round promise from someone, possibly the Knicks, so I can't/won't stay mum on Chandler.

Chandler is basically a younger, bigger version of Renaldo Balkman with less of an understanding of his weaknesses. If he's drafted in the first round bu the Knicks I would have to think that it's in the anticipation of trading Balkman or Jared Jeffries (though I can't imagine what either one would get in a trade).


Chandler projects as either a very good defensive rebounder as a small forward or a decent-to-good rebounder as a power forward. His primary defensive skill is blocking shots which may largely disappear whether he's used as an undersized power forward or as a slow small forward. As the latter, I guess he could block some shots from behind after he's beaten off the dribble.

Offensively, Chandler didn't score a lot at DePaul but those points he did score used up a lot of possessions. To his credit he did not compound the inefficiency of his poor shooting by turning the ball over very often. In that respect, he's the inverse of Eddy Curry. Also, he improved his shooting between his freshman and sophomore seasons though he's still below average inside and outside the college three-point line and is a sub-66% free throw shooter not that he gets to the line very often.

Chandler could be a reasonable mid-to-late second-round pick (though teams would be better served by signing the criminally underrated PJ Tucker). I wouldn't be surprised if he became a competent ninth or tenth man in the next couple of years and his athleticism could tempt enough teams into giving him enough chances that he could stay in the league long enough to improve enough to become more than a spare part.

Either I'm missing something significant or taking Wilson Chandler in the first round is monumentally foolish.

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