NBA Rumors: Drew Gooden's Professionalism Would Be an Asset to Contender

Brian MaziqueCorrespondent IIINovember 29, 2012

MILWAUKEE, WI - NOVEMBER 3: Drew Gooden #0 of the Milwaukee Bucks talks to Luke Walton #4 and Jon Leuer #30 of the Cleveland Cavaliers before the start of the game at Bradley Center on November 3, 2012 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Mike McGinnis/Getty Images)
Mike McGinnis/Getty Images

It seems obvious the Milwaukee Bucks are shopping veteran big man Drew Gooden. Gery Woelfel of the Racine Journal Times writes:

"the scuttlebutt around the league is the team is trying to move the 31-year-old Gooden, who is being paid $6.68 million for this season and the next two seasons as well."

Gooden has a lot to offer a contending team in need of a veteran inside presence. He plays with great energy, and he has always been a capable scorer and rebounder. In his career, Gooden averages 12 points and 7.7 rebounds per game.

Beyond his statistical contributions, one of Gooden's biggest assets is his attitude. Even amid a current decrease in playing time and trade talks, he has remained positive and productive. He told Woelfel:

"I’m not a selfish person and I’m not a selfish teammate. I’ll do whatever I can to help the team. Right now, I’m trying to help the team vocally in any way I can."

That help includes working with Bucks' young big man Larry Sanders for nearly 30 minutes.

That type of selflessness is invaluable when it comes from a veteran that actually has something to offer. Gooden not only has something to offer a contender on the floor, but he has the right approach as well.

Teams won't have to worry about bringing in a personality that could potentially disrupt the locker room, or a guy who will whine about minutes. There are a few playoff-bound teams that could benefit from Gooden's presence.

He would be an upgrade over Hasheem Thabeet as a backup center in Oklahoma City.

He'd also be a decent option as a backup to Al Horford in Atlanta. The length of Gooden's deal may be the biggest stumbling block in a trade. Even though the $6.8 million isn't an astronomical number, committing to it for over two years is something to think about.

If a team does chose to pull the trigger on a deal for Gooden, they will be acquiring a true professional.


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