In The Paint's All-American Hoops Blog

Danny Green
Danny Green is always there to help out Carolina's star duo/Getty Images

"I need a name! Batboy, Nightwing, I dunno. What's a good sidekick name?"
-- Dick Grayson (Chris O'Donnell), Batman Forever

Crockett had Tubbs
, Ricky Bobby had Cal Naughton Jr., The Tick had ArthurWayne Campbell had Garth Algar and we all know what name Batman's sidekick decided on.  A hero needs a sidekick, as the nation's stars can attest. So The Tenth Power is bringing you the game's best sidekicks, minus the capes and tights … that is unless they're into that sort of thing.

1. Willie Warren, G, Oklahoma. He couldn't save the Sooners in Blake Griffin's absence  but you're bound to have a drop off if Al Borland is suddenly thrust into the staring role on Tool Time. With all do respect to The Terminator, the freshman Warren and his 15.6 points and three assists per game is the key to Oklahoma's title hopes.

2. Danny Green, G-F, North Carolina.
The Tar Heels have the Tim Tebow of the hardwood in Tyler Hansbrough, Ty Lawson, who is really like star 1A, and the most dangerous sidekick in the game in Green (yes, he's No. 2, but that's more of a statement to Warren's importance in the Sooners' attack). The swingman is having the best year of his career in averaging 13.7 points per game, 4.7 rebounds and 2.9 assists, he's hitting .449 percent on threes and he has six games with three blocks. He also has the satisfaction of emasculating the currently most reviled Dukie, Greg Paulus, on his is resume

3. Cole Aldrich, C, Kansas. The Jayhawks taking over first place in the Big 12 may be one part Dexter Pittman smacking Griffin in the face, but it's also due to Cole Aldrich's ascension as the second-best big in the conference. The only other Big 12 player besides Griffin to average a double-double (15 ppg, 10.7 rpg) has also made his way into everybody's five in Manhattan, Kan. 

4. Patrick Patterson, F, Kentucky.
Like Robert Wagner in Austin Powers,  Patterson is fit to be Number 2, playing in O.J. Mayo's shadow his last year in Huntington, W.Va., to the same role in Jodie Meeks' bid for Player of the Year. He's averaging 18.3 points, 9.1 rebounds and 1.8 blocks and isn't one to leave much doubt in the scratch/pick debate.

5. Damion James, F, Texas. So James and running mate A.J. Abrams are having a season that aside from one well-time upset has been as underwhelming as Leatherheads.  James is a streaky shooter and he hasn't been helped by his move to full-time small forward. But he still remains a ridiculous talent, averaging 15.7 points and 9.1 rebounds per game, has six double-doubles in eight of the last nine games and the kind of athleticism that creates perpetual matchup problems.

6. Robert Dozier, F, Memphis.
While the stars have come and gone, the one constant during Memphis' streak of 55 straight C-USA wins has been Dozier. He's always been a streaky shooter but what makes Slim so dangerous is a 7-foot-3 wingspan that has made him the alltime blocks leader at Memphis and lets him do things like this.

7. Lazar Hayward, F, Marquette.
If the Golden Eagles were The Fantastic Four, Hayward would be The Thing: the inside muscle who doesn't get the same notoriety as the stars at guard (Dominic James, Wesley Matthews and Jerel McNeal). Aside from averaging 15.9 points and 8.5 rebounds, Hayward also has the added ability to console ailing sportscasters.

8. Kyle McAlarney, G, Notre Dame. The Big East's leading three-point shooter is the perfect compliment to Luke Harangody's inside game. McAlarney has been key in Notre Dame's tournament push, averaging 18 points in his last five games.

9. Alex Ruoff, G, West Virginia. Ruoff has struggled behind the arc but he's shouldering more of a role for the Mountaineers as the clear-cut second option behind Da'Sean Butler and his points (16.2), rebounds (3.6), assists (3.5) and minutes (35.8) are all up. Plus, any guy that can channel the great Billy Hoyle gets major props.

10. Gordon Hayward, G-F, Butler. No relation to Lazar, the freshman's ascension has been key in the Bulldogs not missing a beat this season. He announced his arrival in the BracketBusters' win over Davidson after which Wildcats coach Bob McKillop likened Hawyard to Mike Dunleavy Jr. No pressure or anything there.


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