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Saturday October 21, 2006 11:12 am

Dropping Dimes Draft Blog: Round 7, Pick 1

Luke Ridnour Round 7, Pick 1: Luke Ridnour, PG, Seattle Supersonics

Two quick notes regarding this pick:

1) I had no choice but to go with another point guard in this situation.  While there are plenty still out there, I could not risk waiting another 23 selections for the draft to get back to this team to address the point guard needs.

2) I made this draft selection prior to the news about Ridnour’s thumb injury, making this pick obviously more risky in present time.

The thumb injury making this pick risky?  What about the threat of Earl Watson taking away some playing time?  Word on the street is that Watson will be “finishing games” as head coach Bob Hill likes Watson’s defense more than that of Luke Skywalker.

However, if you check out the game log from last season, you’ll see that even in games after the Sonics brought in Watson, Ridnour still saw his minutes frequently in the 32 minutes per game range.  And while he wasn’t exactly a huge scorer at all last season (averaged 11.5 points a game), his contributions in assists (7.0), steals (1.6), free throw percentage (87.7%), and lack of turnovers (2.1 a game) were very welcomed by fantasy owners.  In fact, out of any players receiving at least 30 minutes a game last season, Ridnour was fourth in assist-to-turnover ratio, and sixteenth in steals-to-turnover ratio.

There’s an old saying within the investment community that you should “buy on rumor, sell on news,” and I think that these rumors that are hindering Ridnour’s draft position are just what drafters will need to get themselves a solid value at point guard.  I’ve seen him go as late as the eighth round, and could possibly even go later with the Watson effect.  In terms of risk-reward, you can’t get much better than a 32 minutes-per-game point guard on a team that features two of the best shooters in the Western Conference.

How he fits on this team:

With all the aforementioned qualities that Ridnour possesses, the main contributions that he will bring with him are his turnover ratio categories.  With LeBron James and Vince Carter already in tow, I need all of the help I can get in the turnover department.  Ridnour’s efficiency should definitely stop the perceived bleeding.  While he’s not a gunner from long range, his occasional three point shots are also welcomed. 

One fell swoop, and my point guard situation is now taken care of.

Other Team Members:

1.1 LeBron James, SF, Cleveland Cavaliers
2.12 Amare Stoudemire, PF/C, Phoenix Suns
3.1 Vince Carter, SG, New Jersey Nets
4.12 Caron Butler, SF, Washington Wizards
5.1 Chris Kaman, C, Los Angeles Clippers
6.12 Jameer Nelson, PG, Orlando Magic

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