This edition of the Kool-Aid will address Chris Bosh and his potential trades. The Kool-Aid is a column that discusses hot issues in sports with one man's take. Questions and comments can be sent to koolaidQandA@gmail.com .
For the first time since Shaq affronted his manhood , Chris Bosh can't seem to stay out of the news.
The 6'10", 230 pound center out of Georgia Tech is in his sixth season with Toronto. Since entering the league, Bosh has established himself as a statistically solid and consistent scoring option with rebounding ability, cranking out double-doubles like an In-N-Out burger stand.
With career averages of ~20/9 and a lot left in the tank, Bosh is one of the top five players in the upcoming free agent sweepstakes (which includes Dwyane Wade and LeBron James)...that is, if he doesn't get traded first and makes an immediate impact somewhere else.
The rumors are swirling, and teams sorely in need of post offense from the Windy City to the sunny skies of Los Angeles (Angelenos know it only rains when the Clippers are playing at Staples, so I'm talking about the Lakers. And yes, THESE Lakers ) appear to be in the running.
But why is Chris Bosh so valuable, and what team is the best fit for him? By analyzing Bosh's game, let's try to find an ideal situation.
Who is Bosh really? The numbers don't lie: in a contract year, Bosh is averaging more than 23 a game on 52 percent shooting and grabbing boards like that ball has a Benjamin taped over the NBA logo.
His ORP (Offensive Rebound Percentage, a rate statistic explained here ) is good for top 10 in the league. He is, currently, the most prolific offensive post presence in the league.
But what about his defensive statistics?
The Toronto Raptors, whose starting front line consist of Bosh and Andrea Bargnani, have one of the worst defensive front lines in the league.
The Raptors are 26th in the league in opponent points in the paint per game (they give up 41.7 PPG in the paint).
In moving Bosh, the Raptors could sign an actual big (if they're so hell-bent on keeping a center that doesn't grab boards and jacks up 4.1 3PA a night) and stop re-painting the key after every night.
The Raptors are actually poor defenders in general, giving up 105.3 PPG, good for fifth-worst in the league.
However, when Shaq called out Bosh for being soft, he had a valid point. Not only did Shaq drop 45 on 20-for-25, he called Bosh out on it.
How did a then-35-year-old Shaq get the kind of offensive positioning to go 20-for-25? The answer is the alleged "RuPaul of Big Men"'s inability to take damage down low.
Your dear writer, at 6'6", weighs ~250 pounds and is able to pass off as a normal (albeit overweight) human being. Chris Bosh, at 6'10, weighs 230 pounds and couldn't pass for a chicken fry at your local Burger King.
Most teams looking for bigs and gunning (sorry, Gilbert) for Chris Bosh are looking for a big that can perform on both sides of the ball.
Chris Bosh is effectively one-sided. So if Bosh moves, he will be in the interest of a team that has an established defensive post presence, and a team that might need that extra offensive piece to put them over the hump and in the league of the Cavs, Celtics, and Lakers (teams that should NOT be pursuing someone like Bosh in the interest of preserving chemistry). Examples:
If Dallas can somehow keep Erick Dampier and deal Josh Howard's contract with another player, they might have a dream scenario on their hands. Dirk moved to the 3 and Chris Bosh? They'd look like the Aliens from Space Jam to every NBA team except the Lakers, and they'd play to match.
Dampier and Bosh could be the tandem target of all kinds of off-color "lack of testicular fortitude" jokes from Shaq, and we all know Shaq cracking more jokes about opposing centers is a good thing.
Chicago is the most common utterance in the Bosh-rumor circus for this reason: they can unload Hinrich and one of their four (yes, four) PFs including Tyrus Thomas or Brad Miller (or both!) and complement Noah...that is, if they don't move Noah in the deal.
Joakim Noah is quickly becoming one of the biggest assets in the post for Chicago. If Chicago can't win with Chris Bosh, then flame-retard Del Negro's donkeys, cause his ass is fired for sure.
Yes, it's possible that the Heat trade away Beasley, Richardson, JO'Neal, Alston, or any combination of these players, effectively making the Heat a title contender.
Whether Spoelstra knows what to do with such big pieces is another question altogether. Imagine Dwyane Wade playing with a Chris Bosh to clean up his misses...that's an offense that becomes scary, really fast.
Entertain me for a second here, even if it may seem fiscally impossible...this is the absolute best fit.
Trading for Bosh (although it would upset the "straight-out-of-HBO's-Entourage" Cavaliers chemistry), it would make them the official "WAMW" team of the NBA.
Trade Shaq out...Varejao does all of the dirty work (with twice as many pricelessly indignant "palms up, what the ----" looks at referees to make up for the potential loss of good jokes).
Bosh's coming to the Cavs would ensure a happier, more-possibly-staying-in-Cleveland, LeBron.
Los Angeles Lakers
As for the Lakers rumor about Bynum-for-Bosh...you can imagine how insane that might be. Not only is it totally unnecessary (Andrew Bynum sans injury problems is everything Chris Bosh wishes he was), but the Lakers already have a post presence who is more "finesse" than Bosh.
Not to mention this current post presence also plays defense and does cameos on CSI. You can't really ask for much more than Pau Gasol, and trading out the brawn (Pau's foil) for another version of Pau Gasol, just doesn't make sense.
My prediction for where Bosh moves?
If not Chicago, then nowhere. He's staying in Toronto until the off-season. There really isn't a dearth of good offensive post players, it's that a lot of these post players don't have the hustle to come back on defense, and Bosh happens to be in the same mold.
Don't look for teams to be TOO interested in trading for him before FA signings in the off-season; Chris Bosh is playing like he doesn't want to get hurt in order to protect his financial future, and we all know that THAT attitude doesn't win championships.