It was a difficult year, Wes. But not all is lost. Unlike your Orangemen counterpart, you showed signs that you’re going to be a solid role player in this league for a very long time. It’s all going to come down to that 2nd year, though.
One thing we learned this year was great of a shooter you can be. It’s just unfortunate because you probably shot the ball too much. Your numbers took a hit in the second half of the season — possibly from fatigue or perhaps Rambis’ washy rotations — especially from beyond the arc (35-percent). We also saw some very good situational defense out of you. Those games you locked up Kobe Bryant were a treat! I had the feeling that, with your body type and those dangly arms, you could become a good defender in “our league.”
But what else can you do?
What you need to work on for next season is your versatility and overall fine-tuning your game up. Some work on your dribbling will help you greatly as you learn the art of slashing towards the hoop. That, in turn, will also get you to the foul line much more, something we definitely need more from you. Did you know you shot more three-pointers than free throws this season? By a landslide, too? Play the odds and take more efficient shots from closer to the hoop. It’ll never be easy but study Latrell Sprewell, as I see you filling a very similar role (Aside from all the legal troubles, hopefully.) Also, don’t limit those stout defensive performances to only when the Lakers come to town. Never give up on defense and learn what kind of motor it takes to sustain a lengthy NBA game.
You’ve been an immediate fan favorite thanks to your smile and demeanor; everyone’s falling in love with you. There’s no denying that, but you’ll lose that infatuation just as quickly as you earned it with a bad season next year. Just ask your buddy, Jonny. He’ll tell you all about that feeling.
Just don’t let it happen, please?