Chris Kaman: The Right Guy on the Wrong Team
Let me first start by introducing myself and telling you a little bit about who I am. My name is Justin Sucher. I’m 19 years old and currently reside in Metropolitan Detroit.
I’m currently a freshman at Western Michigan University and I am the one and only Los Angeles Clippers fan in the Midwest.
I first became a Clippers fan back in 2000; when the team had studs, Corey Maggette and Lamar Odom, and duds, Michael Olowokandi and Darius Miles. The team, while having a mediocre season, just appealed to me for some reason.
Maggette, my favorite all-time player, was in his first season as a Clipper while Odom was in the spotlight. Before I rant on about the current Los Angeles Clippers team, I’ll give you some insight on where I am coming from when writing this.
Being from Michigan, I had the opportunity to watch Chris Kaman more than others. I didn’t follow high school basketball at the time, so, I, like most of the country, got to see him play in college at Central Michigan University.
I was fortunate enough to see him play in person against some of the MAC schools. Being a post presence myself, I always admired his hard play. I really took notice to his defensive and rebounding mentality, that I somewhat modeled my own style after his throughout my high school career.
Unfortunately, a knee injury caused my basketball career to spiral downward, missing my junior season. I fully rehabilitated my knee, but never played the same after. But enough about me, here’s why I feel how I do.
Kaman has only played for one team in his NBA career, the Clippers. He’s had his ups and downs, and has become somewhat of a commodity in professional basketball. There aren’t players being drafted today that earn their paycheck doing the dirty work.
It’s a thing of the past, and with the AND1 style of basketball that most of today’s youth grow up learning to play, it’s safe to say that there aren’t too many guys who have the same outlook on basketball as Chris Kaman.
During this past off-season, the Clippers’ future was blurred. Two of the team’s starters, Corey Maggette and Elton Brand, bolted for more money, heading to the Warriors and 76ers respectively. However, the team was able to reel in veteran point guard, Baron Davis.
The team looked somewhat promising heading into the beginning of the regular season, but proved otherwise. The Clippers’ front office was able to pull of a somewhat surprising move, trading away Tim Thomas and Cuttino Mobley for Zach Randolph, a guy who has done nothing but put up stellar fantasy numbers and cause problems on each and every team he has played for.
However, since joining the team, the Clippers have doubled their win total from the previous two to four. The team’s record is worse than the talent they have.
The real problem with this team is chemistry. Trading for Randolph is not what exactly what the doctor ordered, and is not a solution to the Clippers’ growing issues by any standard. Marcus Camby, another free agent acquisition, is a very similar player to Kaman, both being double-double machines, and known their shot blocking abilities.
Kaman is a great glue guy for every team, but if you have two of them in the same frontcourt on the same team, it’s not going to work.
This would be a very similar situation if either of the two were paired up with Ben Wallace or Dikembe Mutombo. If the Clippers wish to turn around their season, and even their future, they’ll have to make some frontcourt personnel changes, and trading Kaman would probably net the most value.
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