At 5-10, it's clear some of the assumptions about how the season would go have proven very wrong.
So far Coach Jackson isn't a problem or a help. He's helpful in some ways and weak in a few others. I wouldn't hold him too accountable for the losses, but I'm also not sold that he's a great coach. Give him more time and see how he handles the whole season. He gives good speeches. I hope he does more than that.
Kwame Brown's loss was the end of the season, as far as I'm concerned. The front office kind of struck out getting a big man this off season, but Brown surprised me with his size and toughness. He'd be a great back up center at about $3-5 million per. He was way overpaid, but you could see his importance.
The reason a huge center is so important is that David Lee is undersized. To put David Lee out on the floor and not get killed you need a huge defensive 5 next to him to help him out. David Lee will always fill up a stat sheet. But his lack of bulk and height allow him to be overpowered at will by larger 4's and 5's. Ultimately, I see him playing the Lamar Odom role as the super 6th man on a playoff team with a huge front line. I pray that's the W's in 3 years. In David Lee's defense, I'd name him team captain right now. He has more heart than the rest of them combined.
Klay Thompson won't win ROY. I hope Coach Jackson learned that putting that kind of pressure on a kid before he does anything backfires. But I think Klay will turn out to be one of the first W's draft pick in years that wasn't blown. He'll be a solid player, better than most W's draft picks, and when compared to others drafted at his position, will look better than most, and only weaker than a few. All in all, not a bad pick. Not a home run, but not bad.
Beidrins won't ever get better. Write him off. Is he an expiring contract next season? Play to trade his expiring contract when possible, and don't expect much else from him. Total loss.
Rush, McGwire, these guys can stay. They can play and if the price is decent, I say keep them.
Tyler, well, just wait until middle of next year to see if he's going to do anything. It's way too early to tell. He was always a long term project.
DWright, well, he is what he is. A middle of the pack starter, or a great back up SF. I'd keep the guy, but try to improve the position in time.
The idea that they don't need to practice an offense and only practice defense seems to be backfiring. They have a team built to run and they don't run very often. I put that on the coaching staff. Philosophy is a nice banner, but be flexible in philosophy to win with the crew you have. I remember Nellie in his first go round would walk the basketball up court against certain teams and demand no shots before the 24 was about to run out and play to win the last possesion of the game. He's never credited with that style, but he'd use it when he had to. He coached to win that game, not make a philosophical statement about basketball.
The front office hasn't come through yet. They have a good structure and good people. They did decent in the draft. They have done a good job filling out the bench. I am very willing to give them more time to gel and pull off some good moves. I am not a downer on this franchise with this front office. I predict a competitor in 3-5 years, and I mean a Lakers level competitor.
Given the W's record, I believe the recent rumors of blowing up the team are true. I expect that will be an "excuse" to keep the draft pick, and also gain another one via the trade and try to rebuild the team over the next 18 months. I expect Currry AND Ellis to both be traded. Unfortunately, both are nice players, and neither will ever take you to the championship. You only keep them if your goal is to be a nice team that wins enough to be "near" the top.
Predictions: They play poorly enough to keep their draft pick, and rebuild the team by trading Curry first, and Monta second, and gain additional draft picks and attempt to let the talent of the front office rebuild the team through the draft. I don't see them trying to rebuild as much through trade as through the draft, using trades to get draft picks.