Over the next few weeks, we will be evaluating the 2010/11 seasons of all the players who ended the year on the Wizards' roster. We'll offer our quick thoughts, then ask you to grade their season on a 1-10 scale in the comments. For the purposes of this exercise, we'll start with the key players and work our way down. Next in line: Trevor Booker.
|2010 - Trevor Booker||65||16.4||2.1||3.9||54.9||0.0||0.0||0.0||1.0||1.6||67.3||1.5||2.4||3.9||0.5||0.6||0.4||0.6||1.8||5.3|
Key advanced stat: Booker posted a 58.2% TS%, which is awesome even with limited usage. Less awesome is the 18% he shot from 16-23 feet.
Trevor Booker deserved better last year. When you consider his age, his statistics and his status as a cult favorite, he really should have received more than 1,063 minutes. He would have if not for his foot injury, but it still probably wouldn't have been enough.
Booker had a few things working against him that shouldn't have been. He got caught a bit in the Andray Blatche crossfire. The exact reasons for the Wizards playing Blatche 34 minutes a night are somewhat of a mystery, with many factors tied in. The man most affected by all that, though, was Booker. Minutes Blatche got were minutes Booker didn't get. Flip Saunders tried to get creative and work with Booker on his shooting so he could become a small forward, but the simplest solution would be to have given Booker more of Blatche's minutes.
Now, granted, Booker's position is a bit of a mystery. While he fared better playing around the rim than out on the floor, his rebounding numbers weren't incredibly impressive (13.5% REB%, compared to 13.8% for Blatche), and he is a bit undersized. There's also his jump shot, which is very much a work in progress and made it difficult for Saunders to find a lineup that allowed him to hide that. I also think Saunders was trying to bring Booker along slowly, giving him more minutes and responsibility before he broke his foot. It makes sense, I guess.
But I still don't think it was the right call. One of the major reasons Booker was drafted was because he could step in right away and make an impact. Maybe he's not a small forward or power forward. Maybe he has his weaknesses that will doom him to being a part-time player. But he also has strengths that make an impact on the game when he plays. When he's in there, things happen and he's productive. He proved it in limited minutes this year, and should have earned the chance to do so in more time.
This summer is an interesting one for Booker. He didn't seem that happy on draft night when the Wizards picked Jan Vesely and Chris Singleton, probably because the Wizards have been pushing him to develop his floor game so he could play small forward and power forward. He probably does need to become a better perimeter shooter if he wants to become more than he is right now.
But in a way, it might be for the best. I'd rather see Booker play power forward, even if the team has to live with some of his weaknesses. Drafting two small forwards can put that experiment to end and make it so Booker assumes his rightful place as the top big man off the bench.
A LIMERICK ON TREVOR BOOKER'S 2010/11 SEASON, BY JAKE WHITACRE
Like finding a white colored pear
A rookie with toughness is rare
When you get one
Just play him, son
He'll give other teams quite the scare
How much should Booker be worried by the Wizards drafting both Vesely and Singleton?