Our look back at the 2012-13 season continues. Today's installment: Kevin Seraphin.
Basic stats: 9.1 points and 4.4 rebounds in 21.8 minutes per game, 10.3 PER, 23.5 usage percentage and 47.8 true shooting percentage.
Contract status: Washington picked up their team option for Seraphin for next year. He'll make $1.7 million in 2013-14 and $2.8 million in 2014-15 if his option is picked up.
Preseason expectations: There were high hopes for Seraphin following his strong finish to the 2012 season. He looked like he'd be, at worst, a versatile third big.
Offense: Seraphin wasn't the worst offensive player in the NBA last year, but he was among the most destructive. Kuhveen shot frequently (23.5 percent usage rate, higher than Nene) and inaccurately (47.8 percent true shooting percentage, worst among Washington rotation players). On top of his inaccurate shooting, he was a terrible passer who averaged only 1.7 assists versus 2.7 turnovers per 36 minutes last year. This provided a deadly combination that killed Washington's efficiency any time he took the court, landing Seraphin his first Andrea Bargnani Award for providing his team with the least production of anyone in the NBA, contributing -4.9 wins and owning the second worst shot selection in the NBA.
If there's a silver lining here, it's that Seraphin shot well at the rim and in the paint. If he could just cut out the jump shots and draw a few fouls. he might be useful. That said, he's going to have a strong temptation to drift away from the basket as long as he's playing significant minutes at power forward, something that's unlikely to change if Washington retains both Nene and Emeka Okafor.
Defense: Seraphin's defense was decent this year. While Washington was noticeably better defensively with Okafor and Nene on the floor together, but Seraphin was part of quite a few effective defensive lineups. He has the strength to guard big post players and the quickness to bottle up pick and rolls, but lacks the length and hops to adequately protect the rim when he moves to center. The numbers back this up, as Washington's overall defense was much better when Seraphin was paired with a shot-blocker like Okafor as opposed to a more below-the-rim type like Nene or Trevor Booker.
While Seraphin's overall defense was OK, his rebounding wasn't. Seraphin averaged a career-low 7.2 rebounds per 36 minutes, a very poor mark for a player with his strength and size. Seraphin is physically capable of far, far more on the glass and needs to be more aggressive when pursuing the ball.
Other stuff: Seraphin brings a lot of toughness to the court and was very effective against bulky post players, something that can't be said of Nene and Okafor. Even if he doesn't turn things around on the offensive end, Seraphin should always have a place in the NBA as long as he can effectively defend big centers.
Did he meet, exceed or fall short of expectations? He fell way short. Seraphin looked like a future starter at this point in 2012. Now? It's not even a guarantee that he'll be in the rotation next year.
Overall: It's hard to view Seraphin's season in any kind of positive light. Between the poor shot selection and the lack of rebounding, Seraphin probably did more harm than good last year.