AP Photo/Greg Wahl-Stephens
Position: Shooting Guard
Drafted: Second Round, Pick 40
2012-13 Season Averages: 11.17 PER, 6.0 MPG, 1.7 PPG, 1.3 RPG
It's rare that you'll find a second-round draft choice on a list like this, but that is the case for scoring machine Will Barton. Strangely, there is much less to make about Barton's abilities than those of the player preventing him from finding minutes: Sasha Pavlovic.
Thus far, Pavlovic is averaging 19.7 minutes per game. In that time, he has posted a slash line of .364/.333/.000 and earned a Player Efficiency Rating of 7.15.
This is further proof that Pavlovic's value as a shooter was lost back in 2007, the last and only time he averaged at least 9.0 points per game.
Nevertheless, Portland Trail Blazers head coach Terry Stotts continues to play him over a younger, more promising player. That player, of course, is Barton.
Although the former Memphis Tiger is uncertain to play any better than Pavlovic, he is a younger and more athletic option. He brings a great energy to the floor, as evidenced by his performance against the Houston Rockets.
Barton finished the game with five points, four rebounds, one assist, one block and one steal in 15 minutes of play.The question is, why would Stotts opt to choose an unproductive defensive liability in Pavlovic over an upside-ridden Barton?
If the postseason is the goal, it's time to develop a potential star instead of utilizing a proven weak link.