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Friday, June 29, 2012
Why MKG doesn't make sense for Bobcats

By Ryan Feldman, ESPN Stats & Info

The most popular post-draft topic is always determining who were the winners and losers. But nobody can predict immediately which players will succeed and who will be busts.

However, we know which teams best addressed their statistical weaknesses and which teams made picks that didn’t address those needs.

CHARLOTTE BOBCATS: MICHAEL KIDD-GILCHRIST

The Bobcats needed offense. They ranked last in the NBA this season in field-goal percentage (41.4) and 3-point percentage (29.5). They also ranked last in points per play on jump shots, catch-and-shoot jumpers, spot-up plays and overall offense.

Kidd-Gilchrist doesn’t seem to fit those needs. He shot 25 percent this season on catch-and-shoot jumpers and 20 percent on jumpers off the dribble. Of the 501 college players with at least 100 spot-up plays (includes jumpers and drives to the basket that aren’t isolation or pick-and-roll), Kidd-Gilchrist ranked 491st in points per play.

WASHINGTON WIZARDS: BRADLEY BEAL

The Wizards had an inefficient starting backcourt last season. Of the 40 players with at least 1,000 plays, John Wall ranked last and Jordan Crawford ranked 38th in points per play.

In order to upgrade their backcourt, they drafted Beal to possibly take some pressure off Wall and take minutes from Crawford.

Beal wasn’t incredibly efficient during the regular season, averaging 0.96 points per play. He shot 51.6 percent on 2-point attempts and 32.9 percent on 3-point attempts.

But Beal improved during the NCAA tournament. He averaged 1.15 points per play, which would have ranked among the top-3 percentile during the regular season. He shot 78.9 percent on 2-point attempts and 42.1 percent on 3-point attempts. His 71.1 adjusted field-goal percentage would have ranked best in the country during the regular season.

CLEVELAND CAVALIERS: DION WAITERS

The one area in which Waiters will help the Cavaliers is their transition game. The Cavs ranked 23rd in points per transition play this season. Waiters averaged 1.43 points per transition play, which led all draft-eligible players with at least 100 transition plays.

TORONTO RAPTORS: TERRENCE ROSS

The Raptors scored the third-fewest points this past season. Offense was a priority and they addressed that with Ross. Only two players drafted after Ross averaged more points per play and shot a higher field-goal percentage this season with at least 350 plays against man defense: Andrew Nicholson and Mike Scott.

Ross also could help at the defensive end. The Raptors allowed the second-most points per isolation play. Ross held opponents to 22 percent shooting on those plays. Among players who defended at least 35 isolation plays, Tyshawn Taylor was the only draftee who was better than Ross.

BOSTON CELTICS: JARED SULLINGER

The Celtics had the third-lowest rebounding percentage this past season and the lowest offensive rebounding percentage. Not a single player drafted in either round had a higher offensive and defensive rebounding percentage than Sullinger.

Statistical support for this story from NBA.com.