I would be shocked if something was done. To be honest this is one of the few years that an arguement could be made that a trade doesn't have to be made.

Do we have weaknesses? Yep.

Could we shore up a weakness with a trade? Without a doubt.

Could we destroy any kind of chemistry that might exist with this team if we do make a trade, even one that makes sense? Absolutely.

Here's my take on it.

If nothing happens, which is what I expect, then as long as we can make it out of the first round this summer will be relatively quiet.

If we get bounced out again in the first round then the team will need a serious overhall. No matter how good the regular season record is, you can't keep losing in the first round.

I would think the only players that should feel secure if that happens is O'Neal & Artest & probably Miller.

As we start to close out the season I still have the same questions about this team that I had last summer. Center spot & guard play.

Fred Jones has made good strides in his second year & Reggie has at least bounced back to decent form.

A.J. is one of the most valuable players on this team, not because of his floor participaton per say, but he is a true leader on this team.

Anderson has been competent, that is to say he is dull. Which isn't a bad thing really.

Jamaal changed the season when he came in. Till he came in our forwards were winning games in spite of our guard play. But Jamaals court vision & his suprising shooting changed the season & he made Reggie Miller better. But of late he's kind of hit the wall again.

I still don't feel great about any of our guards.

But for as bad as I feel abour our guard play I feel that much worse about our center spot.

Jeff Foster has done a decent job. But he is a backup, nothing more nothing less. You will not win a title playing Jeff Foster at center big min.
He get's boards but he cannot bang with the big boys successfully.

Scot Pollard has had 5 good games. I've actually been contemplating whether or not Scot shouldn't be starting right now. But let's not get carried away, he still is not a starting caliber center.

Primoz ed:

O'Neal. Here's the rub. He can & does play center. He actually plays it very well. However when he does play center it takes away from his game which he excells at.

Which brings us to what U.B. & I have discussed all season long. Is a lineup of Al, Ron & J.O. big enough & tough enough to advance deep into the playoffs?

I think they can, but I'm not confident they can.

I just am afraid that a big physical teams (N.Y., Detroit, N.O.) will just abuse us & we will see a throwback to players standing around harping at refs. looking for calls.

But then again they may very well be good enough. A lot of that is going to depend on Al. Is he willing to play the power forward spot & pretend that he is his old buddy Antonio? (God knows I would prefer him to be like Dale but it's just not in him) Meaning getting rebounds, setting picks & being an asset on offense but not the focus of it?

I hope he does, but I'm not sure.

I think we go through the day like we go through on the vast majority of trade days, with nothing happeing, & in this case it's hard to argue that it was a horrid mistake.