Raw Materials

Posted by Rob Mahoney on November 3, 2010 under xOther | Read the First Comment

Screen shot 2010-11-03 at 4.34.23 AM

After months of pondering the future of of an empty roster, there are now 15 newly christened members of the Texas Legends. Some of those 15 we know, and some of them we don’t, but with the draft now behind us, the Mavs’ D-League affiliate is beginning to come into focus.

Despite the public hiccup, Rashad McCants may be a Legend after all. His current inclusion on the roster represents more of a possibility than a certainty. Marc Stein reported for ESPN Dallas that McCants intends to pursue every possible NBA lead before reporting to Legends camp, and Percy Miller, McCants’ personal adviser, insists that there is legitimate NBA interest in the Rashad’s services.

Sean Williams is in, though. Absent are Mavs training campers Adam Haluska and Dee Brown, but in their place are a few former NBAers (yes, it’s that Antonio Daniels) and a few familiar faces (yes, it’s that Moussa Seck…as if there are others). Behold, your 2010-2011 Texas Legends:

NameHeightWeightAgeLast Played for
Sean Williams6-1023524Hapoel Jerusalem
Rashad McCants6-421526Sacramento (NBA)
Antonio Daniels6-420535Minnesota (NBA)
Reece Gaines6-619829Bakersfield (D-League)
Matt Rogers6-1022522Southwest Baptist
Justin Dentmon5-11185??Afula Israel
Kelvin Lewis6-419522Houston (NCAA)
Moussa Seck7-422224Mavs' SL
Booker Woodfox6-1185??Creighton
Curtis Terry6-519625Petro Luanda (Angola)
Reece Hampton6-5195??Adams State (NCAA)
Keith Clark6-820323L.A. (D-League)
Dar Tucker6-419322L.A. (D-League)
Pierce Caldwell6-3200??Incarnate Word (NCAA)
Andre Gatlin????????

Only 10 of these Legends will comprise the actual opening day roster; in a rather cursory determination, I’d wager that Pierce Caldwell and Andre Gatlin, both products of the Legends’ open tryouts, are likely to be among the five players cut loose. Otherwise, I see McCants, Williams, Reece Gaines (whom the Legends acquired via trade), Daniels, and Seck as virtual locks to make the final roster, with Dar Tucker and Keith Clark not far behind.

It’s also worth noting that Kelvin Lewis attended the Mavs’ pre-Summer League mini-camp, but did not make Dallas’ or any other NBA team’s Summer League roster. Also, per Marc Stein, Curtis Terry is the Mavs’ own Jason Terry’s brother.

Here are some extra tidbits on the Legends, via the team’s press release:

  • Matt Rogers was the Division II Player of the Year last season.
  • Justin Dentmon, formerly of Washington University, was drafted in the third round. Dentmon spent last season playing for Afula Israel, where he averaged more than 20 points per game. In his senior year for the Huskies, Dentmon made 41.2 percent of his three-point attempts.
  • Kelvin Lewis, who graduated from Houston University in the spring, will join the Legends after winning the Conference USA Tournament MVP during his last few collegiate games. Lewis averaged 15.5 points per game in his final season with the Cougars, and hit 39.7 percent of his three-point attempts.
  • Booker Woodfox, the sixth round pick and Dallas native, also has D-League experience. After graduating from Creighton in 2009, Woodfox was picked up by the Erie Bayhawks midway through last season. The 6-foot-1 guard is known as a three-point threat, making 47.6 percent of his attempts from deep during his senior season at Creighton.

Selection Monday

Posted by Rob Mahoney on August 31, 2010 under News | Read the First Comment

The Texas Legends participated in a peculiar one-team, ten-round expansion draft on Monday, in which Nancy Lieberman and her staff had their pick of the L.A. D-Fender litter. The Legends now own the rights to 10 former D-Fenders. Those 10 players are, according to a release from the team:

NameHeightWeightCollegeAge
Keith Clark6-8245Oklahoma23
Joe Crawford6-5210Kentucky24
Michael Fey7-0270UCLA27
Ryan Forehan-Kelly6-6195California30
Gabriel Hughes7-0240California30
James Peters6-8215UNLV29
Frank Robinson6-4220Cal-State Fullerton26
Diamon Simpson6-7230St. Mary's (CA)22
Dar Tucker6-4205DePaul22
James Wright6-1185Colorado29

For those keeping track at home, the D-Fenders not selected were: Lawrence McKenzie, Ray Reese, Rodney Webb, and Horace Wormely.

The Legends still do not have a roster. Though they now own the rights to the selected 10, not all of those players will be in the D-League next season, much less in Frisco. As Scott Schroeder of Ridiculous Upside noted last week, Diamon Thompson, Michael Fey, Ryan Foreham-Kelly, and Frank Robinson have already signed contracts to play overseas next season, and thus will likely pass on the opportunity to play for the Mavs’ affiliate. Of the remaining six, some will at least make it to Legends camp, though it’s unknown how many of those players will actually make the final roster.

The Legends have begun to take shape. Even if, for the moment, that shape is something of an amorphous blob.

UPDATE: Here’s Schroeder’s take, again from Ridiculous Upside.

The Shallow End

Posted by Rob Mahoney on August 27, 2010 under News | 2 Comments to Read

We knew that the genesis of the Texas Legends’ roster could somehow be connected to that of the now-defunct Los Angeles D-Fenders. We also knew that an expansion draft could be an important formative step for the Legends. What we didn’t know is that those two would methods of acquiring players would actually be one in the same, as the D-League announced on Thursday. There will be a D-League expansion draft for the Legends benefit after all…with a 14-player pool comprised of solely former D-Fenders.

From the team release:

The roster for the inaugural Texas Legends season, which tips off in November, will begin to take shape by way of an Expansion Draft, it was announced today. The 14-player expansion draft pool is made up of solely of the returning players from the 2009-10 Los Angeles D-Fenders, which will be on hiatus for the 2010-11 season.  Included in the pool are guard Dar Tucker and center Michael Fey, two of the 30 players invited to the 2010 NBA D-League Elite Mini-Camp, held in June in Chantilly, VA.

…“This is another step towards our inaugural season,” Legends Owner Donnie Nelson commented.  “The D-Fenders had a number of very talented players who have a real chance to develop into NBA athletes.  The opportunity to draft their rights is the first step towards forming our team.”

Essentially, the Legends will have the right of first refusal on all of the D-Fenders, and there should be plenty of refusing. L.A. had the worst record in the Western Conference last season (and the second-worst record in the D overall), and the overall talent of the roster reflects that. I’m sure some of the D-Fenders will end up with the Legends to start the season, but don’t mistake this for anything more than the most basic of starter kits.

Available for the picking are Dar Tucker (also known as he who did this), Michael Fey, Joe Crawford, Diamon Simpson, Ryan Forehan-Kelly, Gabriel Hughes, Lawrence McKenzie, Frank Robinson, Horace Wormely, James Wright, Keith Clark, James Peters, Ray Reese and Rodney Webb. You can view all of their statistical information here, but keep in mind that someone has to produce on every team, even the second worst in the D-League.

UPDATE: Scott Schroeder of Ridiculous Upside ranked the top 10 D-Fenders and described them in greater detail. I’m inclined to defer to him on these matters. Follow along with Schroeder as he briefly explains each of the top 10 options, their relative standing, and why it makes sense to draft the rights of some players that have already signed deals to play overseas.