The Tanzanian Devil: HASHEEM THABEET.
The 2009 NBA Draft has been widely recognized as a 2-man draft. Outside of Oklahoma stud Blake Griffin and Spanish sensation Ricky Rubio, there’s not much out there, right? Wrong. Enter Hasheem Thabeet. Thabeet is an intriguing figure, almost a freak of nature. At 7’3″, 265 lbs, he needs to grow into his body a bit more, but his length is amazing. The wingspan he possesses is so intimidating, it’s easy to see why he could lead the NBA in block shots, not to mention altering many shots.
Now, I know what some may be thinking, “With DeAndre Jordan, why would we want Thabeet?” Simple. Because Thabeet is experienced. He’s had 3 years of college playing for an elite program in Uconn. His offensive game is a lot more polished than DJ’s. He’s a downright intimidating shotblocker, a la Dikembe Mutombo in his prime. He’s a strong finisher – basically the Anti-Kaman. When you take everything in account, Thabeet is something this Clipper team needs. Take a look at our bigs – Kaman is a skilled post player, but as soft as they come, injury prone, has too many mental lapses, and lacks confidence at times. Camby has been great, but also injury prone, and is in the last year of his contract. DJ is raw, way too raw to make much of an impact as a starter. Drafting him will also allow for one of the bigs to be traded and strenghten the depth of the roster. How dominant is this man on defense:
I see Thabeet as a guy who can come in right away and give the team a solid 25 mins a night. A future with Thabeet/DJ would look very promising. Though I still consider him a dropoff after the first 2 picks, he is a guy who can take over a game defensively. And in our case, to be able to take over a game in ANY kind of way, I’ll take that any day.