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Thread: The Most Underrated Acquisitions of 2010

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    Default The Most Underrated Acquisitions of 2010

    The Most Underrated Acquisitions of 2010

    By: Alex Kennedy Last Updated: 8/15/10 6:05 AM ET


    This offseason was supposed to alter the landscape of the league forever. With 192 players on the market and nine teams with $10 million or more to spend, it was clear that teams would be busy this summer.

    After years of anticipation, the past six weeks haven't been a letdown. Stars such as LeBron James, Chris Bosh, Amar'e Stoudemire, and Carlos Boozer found new homes. Twenty current or former All-Stars signed new contracts. Mediocre teams turned into powerhouses overnight and basketball fans were on the edge of their seats for much of the process.

    With so much activity, there were many significant additions that flew under the radar. Acquisitions that would have dominated the headlines last summer were overlooked or quickly shoved aside as new information surfaced. From the young talent brimming with potential to the experienced role players that could put their team over the top, HOOPSWORLD breaks down the ten most underrated acquisitions of the 2010 offseason.

    Anthony Randolph Last season, Randolph was considered one of the best young big men in the league and the Golden State Warriors were hesitant about shopping him. His athleticism and potential had executives drooling and teams kept calling about his availability. Fast forward several months and acquiring Randolph isn't front page news. When the New York Knicks traded David Lee to Golden State in exchange for Randolph, Kelenna Azabuike, and Ronny Turiaf earlier this summer, basketball fans hardly noticed. That's because the deal was made on July 8, just days after Amar'e Stoudemire signed with New York and the same evening that the world was tuned into "The Decision" on ESPN. As LeBron James captivated nearly ten million viewers, the Knicks were finalizing their deal for the twenty year old that had a knack for scoring and blocking shots.

    While he's coming off of an ankle injury, Randolph is expected to be ready for next season. The Knicks trade may have been passed over because of the free agency frenzy surrounding players like Stoudemire and James but at this point in his career, Randolph has unlimited upside and this acquisition won't be overlooked for long.

    Michael Beasley This summer, the Miami Heat had no choice but to trade Michael Beasley. Dealing the former second overall pick was the only way they could sign LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, and Chris Bosh. But it wasn't the fact that Beasley got traded that was surprising, but rather how the exchange took place. After shopping Beasley for some time, the Heat finally found a taker. The Minnesota Timberwolves were willing to use their cap space on the power forward, sending two future second round picks to Miami.

    Two years ago, Beasley had all of the potential in the world and was poised to become a superstar. While he has had his off-court issues, the kind of talent and upside that he possessed doesn't just disappear. He struggled alongside Dwyane Wade and was disappointing in his first season as a full time starter but he could thrive as the focal point of the offense in Minnesota. Many are saying that this is a chance to turn his career around but keep in mind, Beasley is only twenty-one years old. His new teammate, rookie Wesley Johnson, is two years his senior. He's still years away from reaching his prime and he has plenty of time to develop and mature. The Timberwolves essentially acquired a potential franchise player for two second round picks. This is the epitome of a low-risk, high-reward move and could make the Timberwolves look like geniuses if Beasley gets back on the right track.

    Shaun Livingston Livingston, similar to Beasley, has been through a lot for his age. While he's only twenty-four years old, the gruesome left knee injury that nearly ended his career has caused him to spend years rehabbing and bounce around the league. After several ten-day contracts and even a stint in the NBA Development League, Livingston was finally able to stick with the Washington Wizards last season and made the most of the opportunity. When injuries forced him into the starting lineup, Livingston showed glimpses of greatness and the potential that made him such an intriguing player before his injury. At six-foot-eight, he causes matchup problems every time he steps onto the floor and drew comparisons to Magic Johnson early in his career.

    Averaging 15.5 points and 6.3 assists in the final month of the season as the Wizards' starter, it was clear that Livingston's injury was no longer limiting him and he was ready for a bigger role. With Raymond Felton bolting to New York, the Bobcats are giving him a chance to compete for the starting job after inking him to a two-year, $7 million contract. He still has a lot to prove but this is a move that could really pay off if the pre-injury Livingston is back.

    Ronnie Brewer After signing Carlos Boozer, Kyle Korver, and missing out on J.J. Redick, the Bulls agreed to terms with Ronnie Brewer. Although Redick was Chicago's first option, Brewer may have been the better option all along. Tom Thibodeau will value his perimeter defense and he also has experience playing alongside Boozer and Korver from their days in Utah. Not to mention, he'll cost the Bulls $2 million less than Redick each season.

    Brewer fell into Chicago's lap after the Memphis Grizzlies declined to offer him a qualifying offer despite the fact that they traded their first round pick in 2011 to acquire him last season. This allowed Brewer to become an unrestricted free agent and opened the door for the Bulls to bring in a potential starter who fits their system at a bargain price.

    Josh Childress Once it became clear that Childress was trying to return to the NBA, interested teams began to line up. The Atlanta Hawks still owned the forward's rights but were willing to move him for a draft pick. The Phoenix Suns acquired the twenty-seven year old for a second rounder and signed him to a five-year deal.

    But on the same day, the Suns acquired disgruntled forward Hedo Turkoglu from the Toronto Raptors and the deal with Atlanta immediately became an afterthought. The trades were often reported together with Childress taking the backseat to Turkoglu. Despite attracting a lot of interest from teams early in the offseason, Phoenix's addition of do-it-all Childress flew under the radar.

    Anthony Morrow The New Jersey Nets may have struck out on stars this offseason but they were able to add at least one player who is poised to breakout next season. After a frustrating stint in Golden State where he saw his minutes and role changing from game to game, Morrow will look to take advantage of the consistency in New Jersey. Trading Courtney Lee to the Houston Rockets will likely give Morrow the chance to start and expand his game.

    Already one of the best shooters in the league, he has spent this summer improving his defense and all-around game. In the past, Morrow has thrived when put in the starting lineup. In fifty-four games as a starter with the Warriors, he averaged 15.2 points and 4.6 rebounds. The twenty-four year old is determined to prove that he's not a one dimensional player and while the move was underrated this offseason, Morrow looks to be a steal for the Nets as he continues to develop.

    Raja Bell After flirting with the Los Angeles Lakers early in free agency, Bell signed with the Utah Jazz and wasn't heard from again. While he didn't land with the defending champions, Bell will still bring his stifling defense back to the Western Conference and was a significant addition for the Jazz.

    After Ronnie Brewer and Wesley Matthews got away, it was important for Utah to sign a guard and the veteran Bell comes at a relatively cheap three-year, $10 million price. As the most experienced player in the locker room, he'll bring veteran leadership to the shooting guard position and team as a whole. After frustrating stints with the Bobcats and Warriors, Bell is once again healthy and ready to compete for a championship while bringing his signature toughness to the Jazz.

    Steve Blake Because Blake joined the Lakers just one day into free agency, his signing was put on the backburner as bigger names narrowed down their options and the stars met with teams. While Blake will be a reserve in Los Angeles, he may be one of the most important players on the roster heading into next season. After watching the Oklahoma City Thunder, Phoenix Suns, and Boston Celtics kill them with bench play, the Lakers went into this offseason looking to improve their depth.

    Outside of Raymond Felton, Blake was arguably the best point guard available and will be a significant upgrade over Jordan Farmar. Many teams called but he wound up taking less to sign in Los Angeles and compete for a ring. With Derek Fisher getting older, Blake can play big minutes off of the bench and it pays to have someone that has started in 310 games running your second unit. The Lakers needed a distributor who could improve their bench and start if necessary and that's exactly what they got in Blake.

    Brad Miller Although Miller is the oldest player on this list, he's an important addition to the Houston Rockets. After Yao Ming missed all of last season with a hairline fracture in his left foot, the team realized that they needed an experienced center on their bench.

    While the Rockets are hoping that Yao will be ready for the season and be able to stay healthy, it's important to have a veteran waiting for his number to be called. Jordan Hill showed progress during Summer League but he's still very raw and Houston wanted a proven reserve backing up their big man. With Yao coming off of surgery and playing for the first time since having sixteen pins inserted into his foot, signing Miller to a three-year deal was the right move for the Rockets.

    Udonis Haslem When a team signs three All-Stars in twenty-four hours, the role players that they bring in are going to get overlooked. That was the case with Udonis Haslem in Miami. After turning down offers from the Denver Nuggets and Dallas Mavericks, Haslem decided to take about $10 million less to join the Heat. Not only will he be valuable as Miami's best big man, he'll do the dirty work and take on any role that's asked of him. While most of the veterans on the Heat bench are chasing a ring, Haslem has a championship to his name. He has spent entire career in Miami and has played with Dwyane Wade since his rookie season.

    But more importantly, Haslem won't be afraid to voice his opinions and will be able to keep the team's egos in check. Critics have wondered whether or not Miami will be able to handle tough stretches or coexist and that's where Haslem can make his mark. He's a glue guy who will make sure that everybody is on the same page in the locker room. With plenty of new faces that may feel uncomfortable speaking up as they adjust to the new situation, Haslem will break the uncomfortable silences, make sure things are where they need to be, and give everything on the court.

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    I can't wait to see Randolph. If both he and Gallo live up to their potentials, we will have a dominant team.

    I hope Mozgov turns out to be a beast. Because we could have signed Anthony Morrow for about the same amount and would have our starting SG locked up.

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    Evacuee Crazy⑧s's Avatar
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    Morrow would have been prime. But there's as much guarantee with him as there is with Randolph. Out of the 2 I'd have taken The Candyman though.

    Mason Jr. and Azabuike might well surprise us.

    All said, with the acquisition of Mozgov and AR, our lost picks could be made up for. Perhaps drastically, perhaps not.

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    This thread makes me want to CRY ......I wouldve LUV to have
    got both "Morrow and Brewer" fighting for the starting SG role b/c
    whichever came off the bench wouldve made 2nd season Douglas look good.
    I mention this b/c I'm still a big-fan of David Lee, so after we signed
    Amare/Felton we couldve resign Lee ($72M)/resign Earl Barron, plus
    gave Brewer/Morrow the same salary they received from Bulls/Nets.

    u have to excuse me for not being excited over the David Lee to GS trade,
    maybe b/c I dont see the 3 powerhouse East teams Miami/Boston/Magic
    beating a Knick bigman lineup of Barron/Amare/Lee/SF-Chandler/SF-Gallo
    all 4 games in the regular season.

    I dont have anything against Anthony Randolph, his athleticism probably
    is underrated but I dont forget a healthy Randolph inconsistency in both
    year Summer League tournaments, plus how lost he looked playing as a
    bigman PF in GS.
    Azu & Morrow could probably be put on the same equal levels as G/F
    when u look at the players they had to compete against for playingtime in GS.

    After the signing of Roger Mason/Andy Rautins
    the Knicks have 13 players under contract

    1) Raymond Felton PG 6.1 198
    2) Toney Douglas G 6.1 200
    3) Andy Rautins G 6.4 194

    4) Roger Mason SG 6.5 212
    5) Bill Walker SG 6.6 220

    6) Kelenna Azubuike SF 6-5 220
    7) Wilson Chandler SF 6-8 225
    8) Danilo Gallinari F 6.10 225
    9) Anthony Randolph F 6.10 220

    10) Amare <NOBR style="FONT-FAMILY: inherit; COLOR: darkblue; FONT-WEIGHT: bold" id=itxt_nobr_22_0>Stoudemire</NOBR> PF 6.10 250
    11) Ronny Turiaf PF 6.10 249

    12) Eddy Curry C 6.11 295
    13) Timofey Mozgov C 7.1 270

    I added the size/weight/positions these players perform their best ball at, plus drafted at.
    All for the reason of headcoach Dantoni....system

    I was going to put down the playingtime minutes each player average the previous 2 seasons<!-- google_ad_section_end -->

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    Originally Posted by Crazy8s
    Morrow would have been prime. But there's as much guarantee with him as there is with Randolph. Out of the 2 I'd have taken The Candyman though.

    Mason Jr. and Azabuike might well surprise us.

    All said, with the acquisition of Mozgov and AR, our lost picks could be made up for. Perhaps drastically, perhaps not.

    Our lost picks could never be made up for.
    Coach Adelman showcase Jefferies/Hill, and decided this summer to keep both.
    The two players couldve been great trading pieces on draft night without adding
    any first round picks in the trade.

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    Azubuike has great potential with this team, I think a lot of people are underrating him at this point.

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    Evacuee Crazy⑧s's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Kiyaman
    Our lost picks could never be made up for.
    Coach Adelman showcase Jefferies/Hill, and decided this summer to keep both.
    The two players couldve been great trading pieces on draft night without adding
    any first round picks in the trade.
    Are you saying that Mozgov and Randolph are not the equivalent of 2 first round picks?

    And with Jefferies $6M+ salary off the books, we had enough breathing room to sign Felton as well. Otherwise we would have kept Puhon

    Quick comparative:

    OUT: Lee, Jefferies, Hill, Nate, Puhon, Harrington, Eddie House, Giddens, 2 first round picks.

    IN: Amar'e, Mozgov, AR, Turiaf, Azabuike, Felton, Fields, Mason Jr., Jordan.

    As far as I know, we also have----- a couple of 2nd round picks and a quasi protected 1st rounder?

    Why are you still complaining Kiyaman?

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    I don't see how anyone can be upset with what the Knicks have done.

    They kept all of their young talent. All of the players they lost were older and overpaid players who were no longer pulling their weight on our team, not to mention pure trash like Chris Duhon.

    We either kept our good talent (Sky Walker, Gallo, Chandler, Douglas) or lost good talent but gained it back (we lost Lee but we gained Amar'e not to mention Anthony Randolph, Ronny Turiaf, and Kelenna Azubuike).

    Think about just our starting 5.

    PG: Lost Duhon, gained Felton
    SG: Still Wilson Chandler
    SF: Still Gallo
    PF: Lost Lee, gained Amar'e
    C: Lost...oh wait we had no centers, gained Ronny Turiaf

    Even the starting 5 has already been HUGELY upgraded

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    Originally Posted by SSj4Wingzero
    I don't see how anyone can be upset with what the Knicks have done.

    They kept all of their young talent. All of the players they lost were older and overpaid players who were no longer pulling their weight on our team, not to mention pure trash like Chris Duhon.

    We either kept our good talent (Sky Walker, Gallo, Chandler, Douglas) or lost good talent but gained it back (we lost Lee but we gained Amar'e not to mention Anthony Randolph, Ronny Turiaf, and Kelenna Azubuike).

    Think about just our starting 5.

    PG: Lost Duhon, gained Felton
    SG: Still Wilson Chandler
    SF: Still Gallo
    PF: Lost Lee, gained Amar'e
    C: Lost...oh wait we had no centers, gained Ronny Turiaf

    Even the starting 5 has already been HUGELY upgraded
    I have no other choice but to accept what Donnie Walsh/Mike Dantoni
    did to my life long Knick team.
    The sameway I had to accept Layden/Isiah deleting the entire roster
    within their first two seasons (nothing change).
    Do I aprove on how Layden/Isiah/Walsh/Dantoni went about doing things
    their first 2 years on the job? Hell No!
    Have u ever seen Dantoni coach a center in the NBA? Hell No!
    Shaq had alot to do with Dantoni departure from Phoenix.
    Is Wilson Chandler a SG? Hell No!
    Chandler is/was the best starting SF we have on our roster.
    Plus Chandler provides defensive stops at crunchtime at the SF spot.
    Duhon was a FA product of Walsh/Dantoni.
    Last season 29 win team the majority of players Walsh/Dantoni put on
    this team.
    Only 5 Knick players from the 2007-8 season was on the 29 win roster.

    As far as your comment, "Even the starting 5 has already been HUGELY upgraded".
    What starting 5?
    Dantoni played us the same way Larry Brown played us, by changing the
    starting-5 players every several games. DNP players b/c he doesnt know
    how to coach a 8+ rotation in the NBA.

    What we did was change the majority of (Walsh) players on the roster
    this offseason.
    When the Knicks win 41+ games in 2010-11 then u can mention upgrade in
    players, but if the Knicks win 38 or less u have to admit we just change the
    players on the roster.

    The Knicks been in dire need of a change in coaching-staff.
    We payed all that money to Larry Brown to bring "DEFENSE" back to MSG.

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    Originally Posted by Crazy8s
    Are you saying that Mozgov and Randolph are not the equivalent of 2 first round picks?

    And with Jefferies $6M+ salary off the books, we had enough breathing room to sign Felton as well. Otherwise we would have kept Puhon

    Quick comparative:

    OUT: Lee, Jefferies, Hill, Nate, Puhon, Harrington, Eddie House, Giddens, 2 first round picks.

    IN: Amar'e, Mozgov, AR, Turiaf, Azabuike, Felton, Fields, Mason Jr., Jordan.

    As far as I know, we also have----- a couple of 2nd round picks and a quasi protected 1st rounder?

    Why are you still complaining Kiyaman?

    So far the only bright spot to mention on this new roster is Turiaf.

    "We're going to play team basketball. We are going to be playing together and everybody moving in the same direction. We are all here to win basketball games--not to lose. That's something that people need to understand is that we will do whatever it takes, whatever we have to do to make that happen. I have talked to plenty of guys on the team already. I was on vacation with Gallo [Danillo Gallinari]. I have been working out with Stoudamire every day. I have worked out with Toney Douglas. I have talked to Wilson Chandler, Raymond Felton. And of course my two partners from Golden State Azubuike and Randy [Anthony Randolph]. So I've been in contact with a lot of those guys and I think they are excited and there is one key word: winning."
    [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]

    Reading this shows a step in the right direction from a new teammate.
    u can read he is a product of HOF Coach Phil Jackson

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    Originally Posted by Kiyaman
    So far the only bright spot to mention on this new roster is Turiaf.

    "We're going to play team basketball. We are going to be playing together and everybody moving in the same direction. We are all here to win basketball games--not to lose. That's something that people need to understand is that we will do whatever it takes, whatever we have to do to make that happen. I have talked to plenty of guys on the team already. I was on vacation with Gallo [Danillo Gallinari]. I have been working out with Stoudamire every day. I have worked out with Toney Douglas. I have talked to Wilson Chandler, Raymond Felton. And of course my two partners from Golden State Azubuike and Randy [Anthony Randolph]. So I've been in contact with a lot of those guys and I think they are excited and there is one key word: winning."
    [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]

    Reading this shows a step in the right direction from a new teammate.
    u can read he is a product of HOF Coach Phil Jackson


    Wait... what?! in a year where we get Amare, Felton Randolph and Azu. you think the only one bright spot on the roster is Turiaf? While i like Turiaf as a player and a perosn and expect to see shades of Charles Oakley from him with his hustle and nasty style.. He is far from the only bright spot.. i dont even know what else to say to that.

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    Kiyaman, nowhere in my post did I mention Walsh or D'Antoni or ANY COACH for that matter....I merely stated that our roster improved from last year...you have to be a moron to think this is not true...again it has nothing to do with D'Antoni, I know you hate him but I'm not talking about him right now...

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