Mar 25, 2014; Los Angeles, CA, USA; New York Knicks forward Amar

NBA Free Agency 2014: Is Chris Kaman an Option?

With the only holdovers from last season’s roster being Thaddeus Young (for now), Michael Carter-Williams, Tony Wroten and Nerlens Noel, the Sixers have a lot of spots to fill. Philadelphia has a bunch of players on non-guaranteed contracts, with options for next season, but the free agent market has some viable options for backup spots. With the youngest team in the league, the Sixers should be looking to bring some veterans into the fold to help expedite the progress of the young stars.

Chris Kaman may not appear as the hottest option, especially at 32 years old, but all options should be looked at this off-season. The Sixers aren’t winning any championships in the next two or three years, so these are valuable seasons to develop the young talent that Hinkie has and will accumulate. Which means that veterans needs to be brought in to help coach and mentor these young players. Chris Kaman has the opportunity to be one of these players. As I didn’t watch much — if any — of the Lakers this season, Jacob Rude of was nice enough to give me the low down on Kaman:

From Jacob Rude of,

Strengths – Few big men have the set of moves offensively that Kaman has. He can post you up, use either hand, shoot the pull-up, or even drive by you. He delivered a small handful of memorable offensive performances. In a league that is going small, Kaman remains one of the few old-school big men who can beat you down low. Really, it was a little surprising that no contender made a move for Kaman for a playoff run. His veteran presence and leadership could be useful for a team lacking veterans.

Weaknesses – To call Kaman bad defensively would be an insult to people that were bad defensively. He’s deplorable. He’s old, can’t keep up with younger players, and really can only play limited minutes because of it. He also has the tendency to force ill-advised shots. It may have been a result of the Lakers awful season, but Kaman had no conscience when shooting the ball, especially early on.

For a contender or team needing a veteran, Kaman can be your guy. He’s a great teammate, but don’t rely on him to be your starting center if you want to compete.

Jacob brings up some points that make sense to me. Specifically, “his veteran presence and leadership could be useful for a team lacking veterans”. With the Sixers being the youngest team in the league, with a rookie center in Nerlens Noel, doesn’t this option seem pliable? Kaman is old-school, he bangs in the paint and has an extensive offensive repertoire. Noel doesn’t need help on the defensive end, that side of the ball is Noel’s specialty. For Nerlens Noel to be the complete center we all hope he can develop into, he will need a mentor on the offensive side of the ball. Now, Kaman is no Shaquille O’Neal or Hakeem Olajuwon, but he’s a veteran with experience in this league.

The Sixers don’t need much on the floor, production wise. This season, Kaman played 39 games, starting 13, and averaged 18.9 MPG which is a career-low. In this 18.9 minutes, Kaman averaged 10.4 points and 5.9 rebounds, decent numbers considering his age and lack of minutes.  There’s a reason that Kaman has stuck around the NBA for 11 years, he has valuable experience that could help Nerlens Noel. Obviously, this signing is all about furthering the development of Noel. If Kaman comes at the right price, why not?

Should Chris Kaman be in a Sixers uniform next season?

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