David Andersen

David Andersen's "tough guy" expression is very similar to his "I hope nobody smelled that" expression. (Getty Images)

The Toronto Raptors’ regular season kicks off against the Knicks on Oct. 27 so that gives me 10 days (starting today) to profile the guys I expect to make up the Raptors’ 10-man rotation going into the 2010-11 season. Solomon Alabi, Marcus Banks, Ed Davis, Joey Dorsey, Ronald Dupree and Julian Wright are not part of this group at the moment but that could change later in the season and they’ll get their own writeups if and when that time comes.

Let’s do this in alphabetical order and start with an obligatory writeup of the somewhat mad-scientist-looking David Andersen.

David Andersen, C/PF, 6’11″, 247 lbs.
2009-10 stats: 63 games, 14.1 MPG, 5.8 PPG, 3.3 RPG, 0.7 APG, 0.2 BPG, 0.2 SPG, .432 FG%, .346 3P%, .687 FT%, 12.1 PER

It actually kind of bums me out that this is the first guy I have to write about for this season’s Raptors player profiles. When I learned the news in July that Bryan Colangelo had acquired him from Houston for a future, conditional second round pick and cash, my reaction was puzzlement which quickly turned to despair. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying Andersen is anywhere close to the worst player to ever put on a Raptors uniform — Greg Foster has been out of the league since 2003, thankfully — but I really don’t see why the Raptors would want to back up their soft, jumpshooting center with a crappier, soft, jumpshooting center. I mean, it’s not like this formula has brought the team great success up to this point, right?

If you think I’m being a little harsh on Andersen, here’s how Houston Rockets blog “The Dream Shake” described him on the day he was traded: “David Andersen can do one thing effectively: hit the turnaround jump shot. He is amazing at it. But that’s it. Literally, there’s nothing else.” Well, I know that’s what I primarily look for in an NBA center. Who needs post offence, rebounding or shot-blocking? Ugh.

Here’s some statistical evidence of Andersen’s finesse-oriented game: according to 82games.com, 75 percent of his field goal attempts from last season were jumpshots, which is a higher percentage than any player on this Raptors roster had in the NBA last season. Andrea Bargnani tied with Jose Calderon for the second-highest percentage at 74 percent.

On the defensive end, we should probably expect him to grant his opponents a plethora of and-ones since he averaged 4.8 personal fouls but just 0.5 blocks per 36 minutes last season. Andersen played far more minutes than any of the other players with that toxic statistical combo last season — and there’s a good reason for that. While he’s not a particularly good rebounder, he did average two more boards per 36 minutes than Bargnani. Of course, that’s not saying much.

I’m going to close by attempting to say something nice about David Andersen, because he doesn’t seem like a bad bloke — he’s arguably the third-best Australian-born big man in NBA history. And did I mention that he has a sweet turnaround jumper? Because he totally does.

Comments (8)

  1. Given that we don’t seem to be likely to do much better with our Bosh trade exception than to get a rent-a-player like Carmelo Anthony (whom, if we really wanted to blow it all up for next season, we could probably get for Bargnani/Reggie/Banks). I’m fine with the use of the smaller exception to bring back a player who is not completely useless.

    He’s an OK scorer on a team where scoring can be a problem, and a player who has already made the adjustment to the big leagues on a team where the fourth big would otherwise be Dorsey or Alabi, and as long as he has the commitment to bringing it defensively on defense that the coaches are looking for, I’m OK with him in the rotation for now, knowing that he’ll probably get taken out of the rotation when Ed Davis is ready to play.

    Sure, Dorsey might be intriguing in that role, but given that Anderson is going to be playing with Sonny and Amir most of the time, I can understand why Anderson might get the nod over someone who has the energy and effort of those two, but lacks the control. Hey, that’s life on a no-star Raptor team this year.

  2. I think BC just replaced the $2.5M trade exception we got in the Turkoglu/Barbosa swap with Andersen’s expiring deal so that if need be, he can package him with other players in a trade.

    Besides that, I have been pretty pleased with Andersen’s play so far. He’s a good shooter and rebounds fairly well. It seems that everytime he gets a pass, he shoots, but they aren’t necessarily bad shots. Defensively, he does what he’s capable of doing. Not the greatest defender, but not the worst either.

  3. He’s also making 2.5 million, 1/4 as much as Andrea, and chicken feed by NBA standards. Heck, Marcus Banks is making twice as much this year.

    So, really, not too much to complain about. Many teams have awful backup centers.


  5. scoot you are the first from canada who writes his name correctly and not andersOn as everybody in toronto type….

    its pretty anoying you guys talk about david and you didnt even have seen him playing.

  6. @daniel: Did I write anything about him that’s inaccurate? He’s a soft jumpshooter who doesn’t rebound particularly well or block many shots. Is anything about that statement off-base?

  7. No Scott you can think whatever you want THAT PART OF THE COMMENT WASNT FOR YOU i was reffering to a lot of ppl from realgm.

  8. Anderson is the best, most experienced back-up C currently (18min, 4rbs, 5.6ppg) in 5 preseason games that the Rap’s have. Lots of worse back-up C’s in the NBA.

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