FanPost

Vasquez/Lowry/Teague > Mo/Tinsley/Watson ?

In considering how many free agents Utah could let walk this off-season, and considering the surmounting freed up cap space, Utah could be presented with many more optimistic options for backcourt replacements and rebuilding pieces than previously thought. Here are a few:

2013 Free Agents

Chris Paul

Brandon Jennings

Tyreke Evans

Kyle Lowry

Jeff Teague (his brother Marquis (Chicago) might turn out pretty good too)

Darren Collison

Jose Calderon

Jarrett Jack

D.J. Augustin

Aaron Brooks

Mario Chalmers

CJ Watson

Isaiah Thomas

Greivis Vasquez

Tpney Douglas

Shaun Livingston

Okay, so Chris Paul probably won't ever end up in Utah. He has a pretty good thing going where he is. Who knows, he could always end up in Laker Land, but probably not Utah. For various reasons, I'm not sure Brandon Jennings nor Tyreke Evans would be the exact pieces Utah is looking for either.

With the various angles of leverage Utah could wield this off-season, one would think they could acquire at least a young, defensively good, but offensively moderate PG. Optimal would be a young PG, with an impressive past, the desired qualities needed for Utah's team, particularly good defensive skills amongst other skills, and the potential to sign a long term contract with Utah and build a good team with that particular piece.

Of the rest of the players listed, I think Kyle Lowry, Greivis Vasquez, and Jeff Teague would be the best starting PG prospects for Utah.

Vasquez has height, athleticism, distributes more points (9.2 APG X 2 pts or 3 pts) than scores (14 PPG), and has good shooting %'s. His DRtg of 112 (up from 107) could be more due to his team losing all the time than his particular defensive skills. When he's on the court, his team's ORtg goes up 4.9 PTS/100 possessions, but when he's off the court, the opponents ORtg goes up 3.8 PTS/100 possessions. So when's in, he's increasing his own team's offensive more than he helps the other team's offense when he's on the court. I know that may not sound particularly great, but I think some of his teammates mask his individual effect defensively. I'll admit I would need better info than I have right now to give a better analysis of it.

Lowry has been hovering around the 17-19 PER range the last few years, averaging about 13 PPG, 6.2 APG, 4.3 RPG, 37% 3P shooting, 3..9 FTA per game (80+ %), all in about 32 mpg over his last 3 years. I know some of those numbers may not sound impressive, but considering he's been through 2 different teams in the process, and missed a lot of time with the Toronto in the beginning, I still think he hasn't hit his ceiling. He gets a lot of boards, is active, and has defensive ratings of 106 and 104 over the past 2 seasons. In 36 MPG, Lowry averaged 16 PPG, 7.4 APG, 5.1 RPG, and 4.7 FTA.

Teague brings the defense (DRtg 104 this year, 102 last year) Utah needs in the backcourt. Atlanta as a team however has a particularly good team DRtg itself (104.2), and has had a good DRtg the last few years, so once again, part of his his defensive rating could be due more to his teammates. However, Teague shows good athleticism, in 36 MPG : 16 points, 7.7 assists, 1.7 steals, and shoots a career average not particularly above average, but above 45% and 33%.

A lot of those guys on the list I could be very happy with as backup PG's, but I think Teague, Vasquez, Paul, and Lowry could be the top starting prospects. The three I went into stats about are 26, 27, and 24, respectively.. I think if coupled with a top PG from their first round draft picks, Utah could have a really exciting lineup next year without resigning many of it's own expiring contracts.

Starting:

Vasquez / Lowry / Teague (PG)

Hayward (SG)

Carroll (SF)

Millsap (PF)

Favors (C)

2nd Unit:

Trey Burke / Myck Kabongo / Michael Carter-Williams (PG)

Burks (SG)

Evans (SF)

Williams (PF)

Kanter (C)

Obviously there could be the potential for signing FA's in other positions, like a young big, a wing who can drive to the hoop (like an Evan Turner / Andre Iguadala type but I guess that's Hayward), etc., but I was mostly concerned with PG FA's. I wouldn't have any issue with Utah keeping Foye or Mo, as long as they did not suck up minutes from players better than themselves, and maybe took a reasonable contract for what they're capable of producing defensively and not just offensively.

All comments are the opinion of the commenter and not necessarily that of SLC Dunk or SB Nation.

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