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