The best team in the D-League has been the Bulls-affiliated Iowa Energy. Two of the key players for the Energy, Kyle Weaver and Courtney Sims, seem like guys who could possibly help the Bulls right now. You might remember Weaver from training camp this year with the Bulls, when he was waived without seemingly getting much of a chance. He's a shooting guard with good athleticism and a broad range of skills, including 3-point shooting. Courtney Sims you might recall from his days as a Wolverine. He's a 6'11" center who graduated from the University of Michigan in 2007. After being the D-League MVP in 2008-09 and spending last season abroad, Sims is having another excellent season thus far this year.
Kyle Weaver -
Weaver is averaging 19 points, 6 rebounds, 4 assists, 1.5 steals, and 1.7 blocks this season. Perhaps most impressively, he's shooting 52.4% from behind the arc on nearly 4 attempts per game. Weaver first demonstrated his all-around abilities in college at Washington State, where as a junior he averaged 11 points, 6 rebounds, 5 assists, 2.2 steals, and 1.2 blocks. In doing so, he posted the first triple-double in school history with 14 points, 13 rebounds, and 10 assists to go along with 6 steals on the road at Stanford.
After a similar senior year, Weaver spent 2 seasons with the Thunder. Here are his NBA stats: http://www.basketball-reference.com/players/w/weaveky01.html. In over 1300 minutes, Weaver averaged 9 points, 4 rebounds, 3 assists, 1.5 steals, and nearly 1 block per 36 minutes. He shot 34.8% from 3 and had a 54.5% True Shooting %. By Roland Rating (which incorporates player PER, opposing player PER, and +/-) he was a league average player in major minutes as a rookie. Compared to Keith Bogans this season, Weaver's NBA stats are better across the board, especially with respect to shooting percentages. Among players with significant minutes, Bogans has the worst Roland Rating on the Bulls by far. Before trading a major asset for a shooting guard, shouldn't the Bulls give Weaver -- a young player who's dominating the D-League for their own affiliate and has a strong collegiate and NBA track record -- a chance to prove himself in place of Bogans?
Courtney Sims -
Frankly I don't know quite as much about Sims, and I need to get some sleep for work tomorrow. Sims is averaging 20 points and 9 rebounds on 63.4%(!) shooting this year. Rather than trying for some more extensive analysis, here's a link to an article on Fanhouse a few days ago: Sims as a possible Noah replacement.
Also, here's a link to the Iowa Energy stats page: http://www.nba.com/dleague/iowa/statistics/
As I understand it, NBA teams can't give out 10-day contracts until January. So what do you think? Are either of these guys worth signing outright to join the team now? Would you wait and give either of them a 10-day contract when eligible? Or do you think the Bulls have better options on the current roster or elsewhere?
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