A1 Summer 2007 Preview

CRFC BBall @ CAC

After all the mock drafts were completed, the emails exchanged, and the frantic text messages sent, the A1 draft finally, thankfully went down at 5:30PM in the Massage Room on Monday.  But all the pre-draft build up about blockbuster trades, mega-deals and free bar tabs died to a fizzle once the selection process began.  Not a single trade went down and I blame the absence of MixTape for me to take advantage of.  A number of late minute dropouts caused a lot of reshuffling on the draft boards, and no one was sure what to expect.  Even the nubs (RoY and Mike D) held onto their picks and tried to draft to their strenghs.  Amazing considering the nearly 200 emails I got throughout the day yesterday.  Someone may draft the actual draft list later in the day, but here you’re going to get your preview of how each team is going to fare, and who has the best shot, to win it all this season.

# 1 Love Explosion – GM O’Cal (# 7 Overall pick)
Roster: O’Cal, KO, Salazar, Kip, Kenny Rivera, Ronaldo Salem (r)

O’Cal’s is coming in your face (wait for it….) with a team that is loaded from top to bottom.  The prohibitive favorites to win the Brick this season, the lineup has plenty of shooters (Salazar, Rivera, O’Cal) and enough bigs (KO, Kip) to get it done downlow.  While not sure what to expect out of Ronaldo, any extra contributions will go a long way in locking up the Brick for this squad.  After that opening line, I’ve got nothing else to say, and I’m sure O’Cal will let the team’s play do All the talking for them this season…

# 2 Hot Scissor Action – GM Tibbs (# 8 Overall pick)
Roster: Tibbs, Preacher, Noah Bergman (r), Tosti, Macho Man, Rob Hutchins (r)

Well this should be interesting.  Despite my efforts to try and shake up my draft slots, there were no takers.  All that hard work on the email chain paid no dividends, and I could still end up getting fired in the morning.  This was a slight deviation in past draft strategies, but this will mark the 1 year anniversary of my only CRFC Championship, so I’m desperate for a Brick.  This squad could trot out a 6’1″ + line-up at anytime.  The Preacher, assuming he shows up this season, will be a force on the block.  I’m looking for the guy that averaged 22 and 13 a year ago.  Pair him with the Young Buck, Rob Hutchins and the glass is theirs to lose.  Seriously, I heard Rob is like 16 years old, 6’1″ 130lbs.  The first order of business? Order 10 large pizzas. The second? Get him to hit the weights!!  Bergman, another attendance conundrum last season, can play the wing with Tibbs (that’s right, I’m chucking).  Tosti and Macho will get plenty of shots and see all of their time as ball handlers.  (Scissor me-timbers!)

# 3 Sofa King – GM Rattling AK (# 3 Overall pick)
Roster: AK, Jrod, Brian Greenberg (r), Roger Lau, Tim Beagan, Harrelson Rivera

The top three teams ranked will not only fight for the top record, but also for top honors in the team name category.  This season, the Hitman will easily be the most prolific scorer in the League and was a great pick at the number 3 spot.  AK is expecting big things from B2 native Brian Greenberg, who was a suprising 2nd round selection.  I’m assuming the reigning A1 Rookie of the Year Roger Lau is expected to be the number 2 scoring option.  Both Jared and Lau love going to the hole and they will open things up for Rivera on the oustide (Huge steal in the last round).  Also expect plenty of shots to go up, so Greenberg, Beagan and AK will have a ton of offensive rebound opportunities.

# 4 6 For the Road – GM Mike D (# 2 Overall pick)
Roster: Mike D (r), Steve O (r), E Brown, Vladi Nechev (r), Jeremy Gall (r), Quintin Walsh

I absolutely nailed rookie GM Mike D’s first and second round picks in the mock draft yesterday, and I will now change my name to Mel Kiper Jr.  Seriously, those two picks were right on point, and he had the foundation of a serious contender.  Vladi Nechev was another excellent pickup in the third round, giving them a solid point guard who will be able to distribute, shoot, and handle defensive pressure.  While getting Gall in the fourth was certainly a great pick in terms of value, one has to question the decision not to go with another guard at this spot.  Like RoY below, Mike D will be looking for his shot as he’ll be playing a pivotal role on this squad as a swing man.  And did I mention this squad has four rookies!?  But seriously, they have a ton of height, no one is getting to the lane on these guys.

# 5 Rum & Coke – GM RoY (# 6 Overall pick)
Roster: RoY, Big Ticket, Alias, Hinton, Tim Spinney, Matt Fisher (r)

Another rookie GM making a solid debut on the rankings as Kahana nabs the fifth spot in the preseason poll.  This squad has some good balance with Kurt, Smith and Spinney all able to bang down low and get tough putbacks.  Obviously, the strategy to get Hinton to play the point is just a ploy for Tommy K to slide over to the 2 and get a lot more shots.  It’s all good, as RoY will have to be a heavy lifter on offense for these guys to compete for the Brick.  As always, unexpected contributions from a rookie, in this case Matt Fisher, can put a team over the top.

# 6 Another Bad Decision – GM Serge (# 1 Overall pick)
Roster: Serge, Trevor, Matt Wrobel, Chris Adams, Kevy Kev, Tom Covert

I hope Serge wasn’t referring to grabbing Trevor at number 1 (again) when he named his team.  Nah that can’t be it.  With Matt Wrobel back into the CRFC fold, Trevor may finally have a reliable big guy that can’t get the tough points in the paint.  (Not so veiled reference to my play on Wednesday).  Chris Adams and Tom Covert will also bang down low, and this team will have no problem getting boards and keeping teams boxed out.  But with Kevy Kev as the only other reliable ball handler, depth may become an issue down the stretch.  Usually, I would rank Serge’s team dead last in my rankings, but a seperated shoulder will cause the General to miss at least the first three weeks of the season, nearly guaranteeing that Another Bad Decision gets off to a good start.   😆

# 7 Passing Ruffians – GM Cheese (# 5 Overall pick)
Roster: Cheese, JaySar, Karl Sattlmair, Sweens, Hinks, Eugene Joseph (r)

The four guard offense almost worked last season, so Cheese has slightly re-tooled his formula and will try to make it work again this time around.  The players are a little bigger, a little better defensively, and can all get their own shots.  The question will be whether Karl Sattlmair can step into the role vacated by Derek Gallagher from last season’s Ruffians.  They are going him to be the guy that steps up crashes the boards, as rebounding looks to be an issue again for Cheese’s mates.  Will the Born Gamer slide to the shooting guard spot?  If he does, he’ll be a dangerous spot up man with Cheese feeding him the rock.

# 8 Mr Adanian – GM Edwards (# 4 Overall pick)
Roster: Edwards, Finn, Nip, Brady, Yavor, Andrew Floyd

For those that don’t know, this is a not so veiled shot at MixTape, who gets married this weekend.  Nothing seems to be wrong when I look at this roster on paper.  One of only 2 squads without any rooks, one would assume the veteran leadership would be a positive.  The bigs, Nip and Brady, are two of the best running the floor, and Finn will have them doing it regularly.  Yavor seems to be the perfect defensive compliment to Finn, but is he going to find enough shots for his liking?  With Edwards and Floyd off the bench, this seems a solid squad, it just rubs me the wrong way.  Besides, somebody has to be ranked last, and it might as well be Edwards.