I've been an admirer of Chicago Bulls guard Kirk Hinrich since his days as a Kansas Jayhawk when his team won a Final Four game against Dwyane Wade and Marquette, and lost in the NCAA Championship game to Carmelo Anthony and Syracuse.
So I have nothing against the trade rumors swirling around which would land Hinrich in Los Angeles, but I fail to see how he would make the Lakers any better due to similar players already on the roster.
Hinrich is a decent NBA guard with a nice jump shot and good defensive play, but honestly, what areas would he really improve a Lakers team that won a NBA championship with their current roster?
I'm assuming any deal for Hinrich would include the Lakers parting with Shannon Brown and/or or Jordan Farmar; both players bring attributes to the table which are out of Hinrich's realm.
Hinrich has nice speed and quickness, but it doesn't compare to the speed of Farmar, and he's probably a step slower than Brown also—although his jumper may be a little better than both.
The one element of Hinrich's game which is lauded is his defense; however, he doesn't stand out in that area so much that it would be worth Los Angeles parting with two of their more promising players.
It's common knowledge that a glaring weakness for Los Angeles has been their inability to defend quicker guards on the perimeter, but lately Brown and Farmar have concentrated on that fault and the results have been tangible.
They are still not perfect in that respect and there is room for improvement, but I would be willing to take my chances with two players familiar with the system and expectations, rather than adding a new player to the mix.
And, could Hinrich be expected to come in and slow down the likes of Deron Williams, Chris Paul, Tony Parker, and Aaron Brooks without falling victim to the same ailments which plague the Lakers now?
As I said before, Hinrich is quick but not quick enough to keep up with most of those guys, and he has good size for a point guard which is the position he would be expected to play in Los Angeles.
But Brown is just as big and stronger than Hinrich, which makes him better suited to deal with the bigger, stronger guards such as Williams. Farmar has the quickness to stay with the speedier guards such as Brooks and Paul.
I admire Hinrich's tenacity, heart, passion, and his coachability, but Brown and Farmar excel in those categories too; I fail to understand the point in making a deal unless it makes the team better.
Hinrich definitely won't make Los Angeles worse, but his addition wouldn't cause any significant ripples in the improvement area, and the Lakers may actually find themselves regressing due to the strains of assimilating a new player.
The tendencies of teams when approaching the NBA trade deadline is often to act with the obsession of a compulsive shopper, only to find that purchases were made that were wholly unneccessary.
This is one of those instances, and although I like Hinrich and feel his addition would not make the Lakers a worse team, I fail to see the wisdom in tinkering with a proved product which has already sat at the top of the NBA moutaintop.