I know we all like to talk about who’s going to be the big ticket guys we can find in free agency or the draft this season. I am definitely an advocate of going after some quality free agent signings, nothing big needs to happen but I’d like to see the Nuggets pick up at least one regular contributor via free agency/draft who was not on the team last year. I’m also an advocate of trading JR Smith (I have been for about 9 months now) and I’m not opposed to moving Kenyon Martin either, though I’m not opposed to keeping him and letting that contract come off our books instead of someone elses. I really think the Nuggets should take a look at the two D-league call ups they have. While generally teams make this sort of move to pick up some non-guaranteed contracts (which are useful trading pieces, after all that’s how we stole our 2 million dollar league leader in DNP-CD), players do come from the D-league and have success. Chris Andersen was the first such player to do so. So I figure in a time where free agency has yet to begin, trades are next to impossible to figure out because free agency has yet to begin and the draft is still far off, why not do a write up on the two least known prospects in Denver.
Karl is the son of well…Karl (Duh!) and also a cancer survivor. With him on the team that gives the Nuggets three cancer survivors and if that doesn’t speak to our teams determination and will then I don’t know what does. Coby "played" with three different teams last season. He started out with Cleveland, went back down to the D-league, got called up by the Warriors when they decided/were forced to put the JV squad out there for the last month or so of the season and then settled in Denver for the playoffs. Coby spent most of his time in Cleveland and Denver (all of the time in Denver’s case) wearing a suit. He managed to get in 5 minutes of PT while in Cleveland and rack up more turnovers than rebounds, points, assists, steals and blocks combined. Again, it was only five minutes. Luckily in Golden State he managed to see the court for meaningful minutes. He cracked double figures twice in the four games he actually played in, but threw up some pretty atrocious percentages to get it (5-13 and 4-12). His best game was in a loss to Houston when he put up 12 pts on 5-13 shooting to go along with 7 ast and 5 reb in 38 min.
Coby put up decent stats in the D-league: 19.3 pts, 6.0 reb and 4.9 ast. He also is a career 46% fg shooter in the D-league while also shooting 36% from three. Coby is best when he can set his feet and catch and shoot. He’s got more athleticism than one would think by looking at him but he won’t be winning any dunk contests. Coby strikes me as a smaller version of Eduardo Najera. Not great skills, but a scrapper with a decent jump shot. Coach Karl said that he thinks Coby has a great basketball IQ and also does a good job of getting out on the break.
Coby Karl Dunks (via skEwb)
Coby Karl amazing performance in SUMMER league 2007 (via LAlakers2007)
Unlike with Coby, we don’t get the benefit of having seen Butch play for our summer league team or in the NBA last year so he is a bit of mystery. Butch fits the mold of the type of player who Denver could really use. At 6'11 (legitimate) and with a 6’11 wingspan, Butch has the length and size to be able to be a force on the defensive boards. He also possesses a decent shot with a good amount of range. Butch averaged 17.7 pts and 11.9 reb for Bakersfield this year and was named 2nd team All NBA D-League. He shot 47.9% from the field (35.4% from three). The best way to utilize Butch on offense is with a high pick and roll. He is quite good at setting picks and then rolling to the three point line for an open look. To be most effective at this Butch needs to be paired with a quick guard who can get to the lane quickly and draw the defense in and the Nuggets have a perfect player to do that in Ty Lawson.
The main detractor from Butch is his build. He is listed at a generous 240 lbs but is probably closer to 230 lbs. With his slight frame he is not going to be a big force down low or on the offensive glass. He is not the big body banger the Nuggets desperately need in the post but Steve Hess could have something to say about that. Butch will stretch the floor for the Nuggets and help keep the lane unclogged. Also, Butch is just one of those guys who has a knack for figuring out the way the ball is going to bounce off the rim and getting to it quickly. He was pretty beastly on the defensive glass in the D-league. In his last three games with Bakersfield he pulled down 13, 15 and 20 boards (10,13,17 on the defensive end). With some work and some bulk he could dominate both ends of the glass. He also has the type of length that would be beneficial for a shot blocker but Butch has yet to develop that strength. Maybe Bird could teach him how to fall for head fakes (just kidding). One thing we know for sure, when it comes to the big cheese, Butch delivers!
PEP'S PIZZA ~ Brian Butch 2009 (via pimastarrking)