Last week I started the first in a series of blogs about draft do-overs.
Over a 5 year period from 2005-2009, what would each team have done differently, knowing what they know now?
I will list the starting 5 for that team in 2005 and the starters now. Then, I will show their draft picks from the last 5 years... and what picks they COULD have had. This is obviously unscientific and has relatively no merit, since hindsight is alwasy 20/20 and there are no salary cap restrictions or "talent projections" to deal with.
Washington looks to be one of the harder teams to judge. They had so much talent and have pissed it all away in the last couple years. They were so mismanaged and ill fitted talent-wise, they needed an overhaul in 2005.
In 2005 the Wizards ran out this starting lineup:
This one will be difficult to judge, considering the talent they had (Arenas, Butler and Jamison were all great players), the talent they got rid of (almost everyone on the entire roster eventually) and what we could "make up" with imagined trades.
In 2005 the Wizards didn't have a 1st rounder. Their first pick was Andray Blatche in the 2nd round. The only notables in round 2 after their pick were Amir Johnson and Marcin Gortat. All three are basically a toss up, so we will just leave their pick alone. They couldn't do much with it.
In 2006 they had almost the same roster and starters. They had DeShawn Stevenson instead of Jeffries, as well as a rotating center position... but otherwise didn't change much. Ideally, the Wizards would have gotten rid of anyone and everyone back then (since they did eventually anyways) and started rebuilding sooner. They had the 18th pick this year and took Oleksiy Pechirov (who?) but could have had Rondo or Millsap. We'll take Rondo... mostly because Gilbert gets suspended because of the gun incident and suffers an injury. They needed a PG for a couple seasons and instead went with Antonio Daniels for 2007. Same roster as 2006, other than that change.
In 2007, they took Nick Young, in what is probably the weakest draft class of the past 5 years. They had the 16th pick overall and we would have taken Marc Gasol instead. As of right now our team could consist of:
Arenas (not active), Jamison, Butler, Rondo, Blatche, Gasol and their other randoms.
2008 saw their roster suffer the trainwreck we were all witness to. Only Butler and Jamison started more than 60 games. The Wizards ran out guys like Dominic McGuire for 57 games and Mike James for 50. Not your top tier starters. They picked JaVale McGee with the 18th pick. They could have had George Hill, Serge Ibaka or Nicolas Batum. All three could have ended up in the 2010 starting 5. We'll go with George Hill for now though, since he is starting to thrive in San Antonio.
In 2009 they lacked another 1st round pick and there was nothing of note in the 2nd round. They did end up getting Mike Miller in a trade though. So this team is obviously a big mess.
They could have ran out: Rondo, Butler, Miller, Jamison and Gasol... with Arenas, Hill and Blatche coming off the bench. Knowing what we know now though, they could have traded away Arenas in 2005 when he was still a big deal. They could have gotten monster dividends from him and maybe even got rid of Jamison for a much better haul than they got from Cleveland later on. Not even counting the goods that Washington coud have gotten for their 2 best players... we have a squad with:
With Hill as their 6th man is still competive and very young. Getting rid of Jamison and Arenas in 2005 could have brought back a variety of options (deeper bench players, draft picks that would have altered our entire roster and/or quality starters) that would drastically alter even our make believe team.
People always make fun of the Clippers and Knicks for being poorly ran, but Washington hasn't done anything notable in trades or the draft for the past 5 years. Time will tell if they bucked the trend with their pick of John Wall this year.