The Third Wave

Posted by Rob Mahoney on June 26, 2010 under Commentary, News | 3 Comments to Read

The 2010 free agent class is unprecedented in many ways. Never before has a group of athletic mercenaries been so thoroughly dissected, endlessly analyzed, and hotly anticipated. Once the shenanigans begin on July 1st, all sorts of fun will be had, as so many franchises across the league will y be either destroyed or reborn in a cleansing fire.

Now, pay close attention, because while everyone is paying attention to the glitter at the head of the class, plenty of interesting things will be going on at the tail. Players like LeBron James and Dwyane Wade are proven and invaluable, but the summer will also yield completely untested prospects: undrafted free agents. In a typical NBA off-season, that doesn’t mean much; occasionally a team may unearth a role player from the undrafted ranks, but even that only happens on the rarest of occasions. Yet the survivors of this year’s draft seem a bit different. There obviously aren’t any earth-shaking talents in the bunch, but there are a number of interesting players that are viable candidates not only for a Summer League roster, but perhaps a spot on the Legends or even more.

Obviously not all of those prospects are going to pick Dallas over all of their other suitors, but the early returns are promising. Despite a mini-report from Jeff Goodman of Fox Sports, a Twitter exchange between St. Mary’s center Omar Samhan and Mark Cuban indicates that Samhan will indeed be a part of the Mavs’ Summer League team. Harvard point guard Jeremy Lin is also tabbed as a part of the fun. That’s a hell of a start, especially since Rodrigue Beaubois and Dominique Jones will headline. It should be interesting to see how the rest of the Vegas roster turns out.

Unfortunately, the Mavs have to do without a number of players they had expressed a clear interest in.

There are plenty of prospects still out there (Mikhail Torrance, Charles Garcia, Mac Koshwal, Aubrey Coleman, etc.), but the demand for these players is clear. By now, I’m sure the appropriate calls have already been placed. That makes the process less of a selection and more of a waiting game. The Summer League roster should be assembled in about a week’s time, which doesn’t leave much time for anticipation. Still, it’s worth keeping tabs on the unclaimed third round draftees over the next few days.

They Smell Like the Future: The 11th Hour

Posted by Rob Mahoney on June 24, 2010 under Commentary | Be the First to Comment

Draft day is upon us. Although the events of this week make moving up in the draft a costly proposition, there’s still an outside chance the Mavs will move up in the second round or even into the late first. Regardless, there should be an interesting prospect of some kind on the board when the Mavs are finally on the clock with the 50th pick. Here are all of the draft previews featured here over the last few weeks (in alphabetical order):

Trevor Booker – PF, Clemson
Aubrey Coleman
– SG, Houston
Sherron Collins – G, Kansas
Charles Garcia – PF, Seattle
Luke Harangody – F, Notre Dame
Mac Koshwal – PF/C, DePaul
Sylven Landesberg – SG, Virginia
Chas McFarland – C, Wake Forest
Art Parakhouski – C, Radford
Dexter Pittman – C, Texas
Jon Scheyer – G, Duke
Donald Sloan – PG, Texas A&M
Mikhail Torrance – PG, Alabama
Greivis Vasquez – G, Maryland
Michael Washington – PF, Arkansas
Brian Zoubek – C, Duke

If the pre-draft buzz is to be believed, Vasquez and Torrance could actually be gone by the end of the first round, with Zoubek not far behind them. Booker should also be out of the question by the time pick no. 50 rolls around, meaning that it’s extremely unlikely that Dallas will be able to draft a player that’s NBA-ready.

Feel free to peruse the per-possession stats of all of the previewed prospects (and all of the players the Mavs have worked out that weren’t previewed) in the chart below. You can sort by any of the listed measures, or classify by position to compare against the rest of the crop.

PlayerPOSTS%eFG%ORB%TO%AST%FTRUSG%STL%BLK%DRB%
Jon ScheyerPG/SG57.250.22.211.525.841.623.12.60.68.4
Art ParakhouskiC58.658.415.614.07.365.827.90.96.023.6
Charles GarciaPF53.149.09.722.08.475.834.90.82.924.9
Greivis VasquezPG/SG54.849.63.818.435.231.330.52.81.010.2
Dexter PittmanC63.865.416.520.45.063.024.51.08.915.3
Sylven LandesbergSG53.047.34.914.522.236.030.11.50.913.3
Luke HarangodySF/PF55.150.58.210.611.835.131.90.82.124.1
Brian ZoubekC62.663.821.621.89.755.317.72.14.024.4
Mikhail TorrancePG59.352.51.119.533.644.925.61.50.811.9
Trevor BookerPF54.953.310.014.417.347.324.82.44.620.4
Mac KoshwalPF/C55.054.411.920.715.348.228.13.32.820.9
Chas McFarlandC49.444.59.923.76.075.318.41.04.618.9
Michael WashingtonPF54.850.79.115.96.362.924.81.45.018.1
Mouhammed FayeSF/PF53.651.28.416.17.934.523.51.42.717.3
Donald SloanPG55.249.62.315.616.745.327.11.10.19.9
Matt JanningSG51.647.21.814.820.133.125.72.70.511.5
Aubrey ColemanSG51.5466.310.215.644.434.14.00.415.6
Devan DowneyPG51.345.81.616.823.431.534.64.50.09.3
Courtney FortsonPG48.340.74.724.224.250.935.42.30.512.8
Derrick CaracterPF59.857.41122.29.045.527.52.03.621.7
Sherron CollinsPG/SG55.850.60.817.624.331.723.31.80.15.6
Ryan ThompsonSG55.547.94.014.116.152.424.01.80.911.1
Jeremy LinPG62.657.13.421.230.968.226.84.43.612.9
Justin MasonPG45.042.94.221.614.249.512.82.51.46.7
Elijah MillsapSG51.545.89.521.613.556.429.93.01.024.5
Marquis GilstrapSF52.949.39.419.29.043.825.31.62.821.6
Landry FieldsSG/SF56.151.96.713.619.550.831.02.62.220.6
Tyler SmithSG/SF61.757.35.513.522.980.419.82.81.114.0
Matt BouldinSG58.952.81.516.921.440.421.62.20.512.4
Scottie ReynoldsPG47.654.41.918.221.851.526.52.80.47.8
Omar SamhanC58.955.213.712.77.143.130.60.87.924.5
Andrew OgilvyC57.950.810.416.28.277.428.52.56.018.5
Tommy Mason-GriffinPG53.149.31.519.728.924.623.41.40.07.8
Magnum RollePF/C54.151.313.115.75.838.324.11.46.918.2
Jerome RandlePG61.355.61.422.223.732.326.61.20.05.5

In case it’s unclear, the stats are as follows (from left to right): true shooting percentage (TS%), effective field goal percentage (eFG%), offensive rebounding rate (ORB%), turnover rate (TOV%), assist rate (AST%), free throw rate (FTR), usage (USG%), steal rate (STL%), block rate (BLK%), and defensive rebounding rate (DRB%).

UPDATE (5:04 PM CST): For the sake of convenience, I’ll be updating this post with periodic pre-draft chatter.

UPDATE (7:22 PM CST):

  • Per Jeff Caplan of ESPN Dallas, the Mavs received some good offers for Rodrigue Beaubois, but they weren’t persuasive enough: “‘We’ve had some unusually attractive offers for Roddy,’ Nelson said. But, nothing that would change the Mavs’ stance. ‘Roddy’s not going anywhere,’ Nelson said.”

UPDATE (8:00 PM CST):

  • A nice little video from the Mavs’ official site showing off the pre-draft War Room.

UPDATE (9:00 CST):

  • Looks like the Mavs may have made their way into the first round after all. According to Marc Stein, the Memphis Grizzlies selected South Florida’s Dominique Jones with the 25th pick for the Mavs, who bought the pick. Check out his Draft Express profile here.

They Smell Like the Future: Art Parakhouski

Posted by Rob Mahoney on June 20, 2010 under Commentary | Be the First to Comment

Photo by AP Photo.

Radford Senior
6’11.75”, 268 lbs (Combine measurements)
22 years old
Center
Projection: Second rounder

Artsiom Parakhouski is not a name that inspires fear. Hell, it’s not really a name that inspires much of anything. As a seven-foot Belarusian playing for a college most basketball fans haven’t even heard of, it would take something truly remarkable to bring Art to prominence. Fantastic Parakhouski is not, but when the Mavs are picking 20 selections into the second round, they aren’t really looking for something glittering in the muck.

Instead, if they can come out of the draft with a center who can sop up some minutes for minimal salary, it has to be considered a minor victory. Art can be that guy. He won’t necessarily come into the league as a pre-packaged low-post option, but he’s a rapidly improving big man that’s still learning the game. He picked up basketball late, and it shows. It also means he has plenty of room to grow from this point on, even at 22.

Art’s not an incredible athlete, but he’s also no stiff. He’s not a gazelle, but Parakhouski has the mobility necessary to develop into a reasonably effective defender. Obviously he’s not there now — how many big men are coming out of college? — but with decent burn in summer league and maybe a D-League assignment, Art could show some defensive improvement by the end of the season. He’s never going to be quick enough to be anything more than average in pick-and roll-coverage and the like, but that’s all it would take to turn Parakhouski into a useful NBA center.

While I wouldn’t necessarily say that Art is raw offensively, his skills are obviously a work in progress. He’s capable of making his open looks, can finish with authority on occasion, and does show elementary form on a few solid moves.

Regardless, Parakhouski comes in as an NBA-ready rebounder. Art hit the boards against weak and strong opponents alike, and no matter how you slice and dice his rebounding numbers, they hold. Overall rebounds per game? Art was tops in all of college basketball at 13.4. Calculate his rebounds per minute instead? He was merely fourth overall. Adjust for pace? He drops to sixth…such a disappointment. Only the sixth best rebounder in college basketball with the 50th pick.

Art isn’t an exciting prospect, even if he is a solid rebounder and well-sized to man the middle. His development could take some time, and even if Parakhouski turns out to be a legit NBA player, it’s likely he’d cap as a spot contributor. There’s nothing wrong with that. The Mavs shouldn’t be looking for permanent fixtures this late in this draft, but if Art could manage to stick on the roster as a third center, then yahtzee.

2009-2010 Traditional Per Game and Per 40 Minute Stats:

PTSREBASTTOBLKFG%3FG%
Per Game21.413.41.12.42.1.581.250
Per 4024.615.41.22.82.4------

2009-2010 Per Possession Stats (Offense):

TS%eFG%ORB%TO%AST%FTRUSG%
58.658.415.614.07.365.827.9

2009-2010 Per Possession Stats (Defense):

STL%BLK%DRB%
0.96.023.6

Other People:

Matt Kamalsky, Draft Express: “Artsiom Parakhouski is the second highest usage player in our rankings at 19.8 possessions per-game. He ranks a bit below average in his overall field goal shooting (53.4), but turned the ball over at an alarmingly low 13.2% rate. Playing in a small conference, many teams chose to hack the Belarus native in the post, and that shows in his 17.7% shots-fouled rate with his back to the basket (1st). He attempted the second most jump shots per game at 1.6 per-contest, hitting just 33% of those shots, but showing potential in the process. Unfortunately, he really struggled when finishing at the rim, scoring just 1.15 PPP (2nd worst).”

Matt Kamalsky, Draft Express: “Probably the best showcase of Parakhouski’s potential physical impact at the next level was his matchup against fellow prospect Cole Aldrich and the Jayhawks. Parakhouski was bothered by Aldrich’s length on a number of occasions, but saw success against him when he was able to establish deep position. On a number of possessions, Aldrich forced Parakhouski to be a finesse player, something he’s shown the potential to be, but not with any sort of efficiency.

Moving forward, that may be one of the more important developments Parakhouski is yet to make. His size affords him a ton of success against the average NCAA center, and he’s become especially decisive on the block. His poise on the block and ability to get to the line account for his increased scoring average, but Parakhouski continues to show flashes of potential as a shooter.”

Supplementary Materials:

Video from Draft Express.

Stats courtesy of Draft Express and Stat Sheet.