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News » Who made the right move this summer?

Who made the right move this summer?

Who made the right move this summer?
Approximately 50 veteran players changed their addresses during the offseason. Some were All-Stars and some were no-stars. Here's an assessment of what kind of impact these guys could possibly have on their new teams. (Rookies and imports are omitted here simply because they have no history in the NBA, and their contributions will be uniformly problematic.)

Definite game-changers

James Posey brings toughness, shut-down defense and clutch long-distance dialing to New Orleans. In fact, his presence could conceivably push the Hornets to the top of the Western Conference.

2008-09 NBA previews

In Phoenix, the question is whether Matt Barnes can score enough to compensate for his habitual lapses in judgment.

Renaldo Balkman has difficulty finding the basket without a road map but could very well become the Nuggets' best defender.

Kwame Brown is an excellent low-post defender, but new Pistons coach Michael Curry has to find ways to hide Brown's notoriously bad hands on offense.

Eduardo Najera brings aggressive defense and injury-prone limbs to New Jersey. Someday Jarvis Hayes will integrate his ornery defense and kinetic offense and become an incredibly valuable player. Someday Keyon Dooling will simmer down and let the game come to him.

Should Gerald Green ever learn to work hard, exert himself on defense, understand the concept of team offense and focus his remarkable talents, the Mavs will have another perennial All-Star.

Chris Duhon will give the Knicks defense, diligence and unselfishness, but can he shoot well enough to stifle the tough New York fans?

T.J. Ford is as quick as anybody in the league, but how long will it be before his new Indiana teammates get disgusted with his penchant for taking ill-advised shots? Meanwhile, Jarrett Jack is sturdy at both ends of the court but isn't athletic enough to man the point and can't shoot well enough to play shooting guard.

Look for Roger Mason to eventually become a useful player in the Spurs' demanding system.

New Bucks point guard Luke Ridnour isn't a very good defender, but unlike the departed Mo Williams, he knows how to run an offense.

Lateral moves

In New Jersey, Yi Jianlian is still soft and defenseless, and Bobby Simmons is still a journeyman player with merely adequate skills in every category.

Ronny Turiaf will bring intensity to Golden State, but because of his chronic foul trouble, most of this intensity will be exhibited while waving towels on the bench. Corey Maggette used to play defense, but as a full-fledged Warrior, he can live in the present and only think about scoring.

Rasho Nesterovic is strong, fearless and immobile. These qualities, along with his solid screens, accurate short-range jumpers and jump-hooks, should make him an adequate substitute for the Pacers.

Ricky Davis was always an inferior impersonation of Baron Davis. Now that they're both with the Clippers, the difference between the two will be easier to discern.


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Added: October 27, 2008


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