Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports
[Editor's Note: We've moved this to the front page, as we'll be doing a lot more often in the future. With the new updates, it's a lot easier and we'll be looking for great FanPosts for the front page. Keep them coming! -Patrick]
I've noticed a lot of questions about this guy James Anderson on this site recently, ranging on whether he could play or would he usurp Chandler Parsons of his "Dreamy" status. Well have no fear, for this is the era of the internet! Some free time here, a line of crack here and a pocket full of dreams, I'll tell you all I have to know about this guy named James Anderson.
A product of Oklahoma State, this kid was a gunner. He could put the ball in the bucket in strides and he is literally a machine. His jump shot is textbook and effortless. Unfortunately, his inability to create his own shots limits his offensive production. Thankfully, with our star back court, we should be able to make his job much easier, and his abilities will aid us in winning more games. He is fearless with his shot, and is always cocked and ready to release. Catch and shoot is the name of his game, and this is what we need with two quick penetrating guards always looking to dish out to the open man.
He has some ability in playing pick and roll basketball, but don't count on going to him to make any plays. Like I said, he's at his best when the play making is done through someone else. His tremendous ability to play off the ball is a highly valued asset and is hard to teach. His addition to the Houston Rockets bench should easily add depth and an offensive option when James Harden is resting.
His stats from Oklahoma State backs up on what I've already said about him. The kid can score, but what is really amazing has to be the PPS, points per shot category. Not enough can be said about this, because it's not just efficient, it's ultra efficient, especially for a high use back court player. Leave it to Morey to pick a guy based on a stat like this.
Another important statistic to note, would be the PPP, or points per possession. His overall 1.07 PPP, coupled with his 20 possessions per game, reinforced the ideal form of efficiency. As I brought up, his ability to play off the ball is a significant reason for his highly efficient form of play. Lacking an explosive first step, he utilizes a controlled slashing game, allowing the flow of the game to come to him. This should definitely be exploited with the Rockets running and gunning philosophy.
At 23 years old, he's an average height for a shooting guard, but has a nice wing span at 6' 8.5". He's not the most athletic one in the bunch, but the kid has the necessary tools to be a lock down defender with above average lateral quickness. Knowing what coach McHale wants, we should be able to give him the necessary guidance to use these tools to the best of his ability. He crashes the boards, especially on the offensive glass, and is fearless when he drives to the hoop. He can draw fouls, and is not hesitant on taking mismatches when they come his way.
He was drafted 20th overall in the first round by the San Antonio Spurs, unfortunately, minutes were hard to come by and he was eventually waived before making any significant contributions. This would become a frequent pattern, with the Atlanta Hawks, and even back to the Spurs again. As I've commented on before in a thread, the Spurs are great at evaluating talent especially with later draft picks, so this kid can be the real deal if we give him the chance.
GP: 7 GS: 2 MPG: 25.1 FG%: 0.447 3P%: 0.346 FT%: 0.714
OFF: 1.9 DEF: 3.0 RPG: 4.9 APG: 2.0 SPG: 1.0 BPG: 0.6 TO: 3.57
These are his numbers he put up when he was in the D-League with the Austin Toros. They only serve to show what has already been established. The 14.7 points per game in only 25 minutes shows that he'll be able to readily contribute and pack a punch with reserve minutes. The 3.57 turnovers can only reinforce that his handles are suspect, and will need to be worked on. Fortunately, with so many of our players capable of bringing up the ball, this statistic should go down as we work him into the rotation.
An interesting player comparison with him that was made, would be Marcus Thornton. At the time, Thornton was a skilled scorer with several flaws in his game. Through the proper tutelage, he has now become an offensive cog relied on day and and day out with the Sacramento Kings. If we can get even half of this contribution from James Anderson, his addition would be a A+ any day in my book.
So, overall, I believe that adding James Anderson to our bench is a solid addition. His ability to score without a conscience will help to keep us in games when points are hard to come by, or to keep them coming when we have to pull Harden in to rest. If we can mentor him properly under the guidance of McHale, I have no doubt that he could be a pesky defensive force that would allow the bench to anchor our leads when we rest our starters.Let's hope that he lives up to his potential, and become a Houston Rocket we can cheer for.