Monday, August 01, 2005
SONICS TO SIGN RICK BRUNSON AS BACK-UP POINT
950, KJR'S Locked on Sports reports that according to sources inside the NBA, the Sonics have come to a one-year agreement with Rick Brunson. Brunson, 32, is a 8 year veteran in the NBA. Brunson will be the back-up to Luke Ridnour.
Last season the Sonics played a three-guard rotation, however in the 2005-06 season the Sonics are anticipating that they will have a 4-guard rotation. Brunson stand at 6 foot 4 inches tall and weighs 190 pounds. His size is a nice compliment to Ridnour.
Last season, Brunson played 80 games, starting 39, with the LA Clippers averaging 24 minutes a game. He scored 5 points per game and averaged 5 assists. In his 39 starts last season he averaged 7 points, 7 assists and 3 rebounds.
His assist to turnover ratio was an impressive 5.1 to 1.56. This is very similar to what Daniels brought to the floor for the Sonics.
His shooting is not a strong point. He is a career 38% from the field. On the positive side he should be able to stretch the defense as a career 36% three point shooter. Over the past two seasons, Brunson has really added the three to his game and has hit 206 of 547 attempts for 38%
This will be the Temple graduates 7th team in the NBA. He started his career as an undrafted free agent with the Portland Trailblazers. Since he has bounced around, but a great sign of what type of player and person Brunson is that three teams have had him back for a second run.
According to sources the contract is a 1 year deal for the minimum contract. That will not count against the Sonics mid-level exception.
LOCKE’S TAKE –
This isn’t going to wow anyone but it makes a lot of sense. The Sonics have decided to play a 4 guard line-up next season with Brunson backing-up of Ridnour. Brunson is the ultimate back-up point guard. He doesn’t turn the ball over. He is just good enough that he can hurt the other team. He has been through so much as a player that you know he isn’t going to rock the boat wanted more time or more shots. His performance this last year with the Clippers was strong enough that if Ridnour gets hurt he could run the team for a short period of time.
The real issue is with Ridnour’s development and the likelihood that he will be playing 34 minutes a night next season the Sonics have moved into a realm where the back-up point guard becomes an interchangeable part every two years or so. Therefore, Brunson is a very good answer at the back-up position.
Interesting comparison to who AD was when the Sonics acquired him. Daniels last year in Portland he average 3.7 points and 1 assist in 13 minutes a night. I doubt Bronson will be able to what AD did last year for the Sonics, but you would have never imagined AD would have done that when he came to Seattle.