The Gophers have been enjoying a Glen Mason-esque pre-Big 10 schedule as they find their way without everyone's favorite man-beast, Trevor Mbakwe. Without Mbakwe, it seems that this year's Gopher squad is a mid-table product. However, there are a lot of things to like and to watch develop this year. Right now, not including Mbakwe, there are nearly 11 players getting at least 10 minutes per game (Coleman and Ingram are just short, but it looks like they'll get there)
Here are one dope's thoughts on some of the players:
- Rodney Williams is a beast when he can hang around the basket and not think. Last year, you could literally see the hamster running in Rodney's head as he stood on the wing and Hoffarber tried to will him in with his mind to break towards the hoop. Is he going to get knocked around inside during B1G play? Sure, he is. He's also going to attack the rim for rebounds and get to the foul line as he flops to the ground like a speared carp. 61% from the field and nearly two blocks and two rebounds a game is sick like Scott Weiland's Christmas Album.
- Andre Hollins is finding his 3 point stroke (9-21). Plus, he has Dre Hollins on the back of his jersey; which rules of course. This kid is a freshman and the early returns are impressive I think.
- Chip Armelin has made at least two or three good plays for every dopey play he makes. I've both cursed and praised him on twitter. The sophomore is ACTIVE though and I like his motor off of the bench.
- That being said, neither Armelin nor Maverick Ahanmisi can shoot a three. They're a combined 7-33. (vomit)
- Julian Welch is pretty awesome. He's scored at least 15 and had at least 4 assists in four of the last 5 games. There's some funny math in there, but just go with it. He's brought some leadership at the PG position that was sorely needed. Suck it, Cobbs.
- Elliott Eliason is a 6'11" gangly white man with floppy hair. However, the freshman has provided a toughness and scrappiocity that is much needed. He has a Colton Iverson-like ability to get tagged with the foul, but he's often in the right spot, gets rebounds and can catch the basketball. Like Colton, Tubby will have a short leash for better or worse and Elliott needs to be able to roll with the punches and keep providing energy.
- Dan Coleman's brother is a freshman that's earning himself more minutes as is Andre Ingram; who provides some toughness. I'd like to see more of both.
|"This will get me more drugs, right guys?"|
Hell on Wheels
This show is pretty awesome. It's on AMC and it is about the creation of the transcontinental railroad. It has Colm Meaney (Doc Durant) who channels his role in Last of the Mohicans as native-american-hater-guy that will stop at nothing to get rich off of this railroad. Anson Mount plays Cullen Bohanon a former confederate soldier that used to own slaves. He's hell bent on avenging the death of his wife and he's channeling Clint Eastwood in High Plains Drifter. He shoots whisky and bad guys and throws down against former slave Common in bare knuckle fisticuffs. Good stuff.
There's Natives for Jesus, preachers with agendas, a big crazy Norwegian called "The Swede" and whores with face tattoos. I highly recommend it.
Sounds like it's about a done deal for Josh Willingham to the tune of 3 years, $21 million. This is a decent price for Willingham and as mentioned in my last Twins post I'm glad they sprung for him. I still think the right move is to still acquire Cuddyer or Kubel and finalize that trade with the Nationals for Storen. Right now I believe the lineups is something to the tune of:
Ryan Doumit DH
Still a little light on the pop, right? Also, it's more preferable that Doumit rotate between catcher, 1B and maybe a little RF than DH. Otherwise we have to see the Butera experiment again and it burns the eyes.
The Wolves love to give 4 year deals to third tier PGs and Barea is no exception. (4/$19MM) JJ is a great fit because he and Rubio can speak spanglish in the back court and not defend anyone together. Some might say this opens up the opportunity to move Ridnour, but I think they'll hang on to both JJ and Luke for the time being. Not to mention I don't think you get much more than a 2nd round pick for Luke Ridnour at this point. JJ can get hot and shoot the lights out and I like that. Ridnour can do that at times as well, so maybe it's a hot hand situation. With the Barea signing, it sounds like the Wolves are set. Here's my drunken depth chart:
PG: Ridnour, Rubio, Barea
SG: W. Johnson, Barea, Ellington, M. Lee
SF: Beasley, Derrick Williams, Dead Martell Webster, M. Lee
PF: Kevin Love, D-Will, A. Randolph, A. Tolliver
C: Darko, A. Randolph, B. Miller (in Jan), Tolliver
Time to get fired up, people!