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Previewing the D-League Playoffs
by: Jim Hlavac, Mike Schmidt - D-League, NCAA Scout
April 13, 2008
5. Colorado 14ers (28-21) @ 4. Los Angeles D-Fenders
(32-17)


Previous Meetings:
Los Angeles won the season series 2-0
March 14 - Los Angeles 99, @Colorado 96
March 26 - @Los Angeles 101, Colorado 90

Team Stats
LAD points for 104.4
LAD points against 99.9

COL points for 109.2
COL points against 103.9

Records
LAD Home Record 18-6 .750
COL Road Record 10-13 .435


Los Angeles D-Fenders

The D-Fenders are riding a four game losing streak heading in to the playoffs and have clearly been hurt by defections to Europe. The key loss for the D-Fenders comes in the form of Stephane Lasme (Miami Heat), who combined with McCoy, gave the team a tandem of defenders at the rim who would have made them the favorites to win the title. To get back on track, they will need strong guard play from Coby Karl, who has scored the ball effectively since his third and final return to the D-Fenders. Karl needs to cut down on turnovers in his role as the initiator of the triangle offense. Up front, Jelani McCoy still provides interior defense, but they need another big man to provide help-side protection at the rim. If Abdoulaye N’Diaye can stay out of foul trouble, his defense would be a great asset to the D-Fenders headed into the playoffs. Consistency will also been needed from small forward Sean Banks, who has struggled as of late despite ranking among the scoring leaders in the D-League this season. The NBA veterans on Colorado will provide a tough challenge for the D-Fenders, and they will need to be firing on all cylinders to beat the 14ers in this game.

Starting Lineup
PG Erick Craven (7.9pts, 3.1reb, 2.6 ast)
SG Coby Karl (17.3, 5.6, 4.4)
SF Sean Banks (21.9, 5.4, 3.1)
PF Brandon Wallace (8.0, 6.5, 3.0)
C Jelani McCoy (11.0, 7.9, 3.3)
Head Coach: Dan Panaggio

Team Leaders (Season)
Points: Sean Banks 21.9
Rebounds: Jelani McCoy 7.9
Assists: Brian Chase* 3.6, Jelani McCoy 3.3
* No longer with team

Team Leaders (Last 10 Games)
Points Sean Banks 20.9
Rebounds Jelani McCoy 9.3
Assists Jelani McCoy 4.8

Key Losses
SF Devin Green (Italy) 16.4pts, 6.4reb, 4.2ast
PG Brian Chase (Turkey) 16.5pts, 3.8reb, 3.6ast
PF Stephane Lasme (Miami Heat) 10.6pts, 7.5reb, 1.3ast

Assigned Players
Coby Karl (Lakers)

Players with NBA Experience
Jelani McCoy, Robert Whaley


Colorado 14ers

The 14ers seem to be peaking at the right time, winning their last six games to close the season. They are clearly helped by a stacked roster which includes many NBA veterans who now have had time to build chemistry as a team. Point guard Eddie Gill recently returned from the Seattle SuperSonics, and has NBA playoff experience under his belt. Billy Thomas can space the floor with his shooting and provides a steady presence on the defensive end. Kaniel Dickens ability to light it up from long range will also be an asset to the 14ers in the playoffs, and John Thomas has years of NBA playoff experience under his belt as well. NBA point guard Taurean Green starts next to Gill and provides a nice scoring punch in the back-court, and a number of solid role players including Justin Cage and Eric Osmundson can fill in off the bench. Lack of depth up front is the big concern for the 14ers, but they have a well balanced roster otherwise as well as a veteran minor league coach. If they can win in Los Angeles, it could provide the proper momentum they need to take home the 2008 championship.

Starting Lineup
PG Eddie Gill (7.9pts, 3.1reb, 2.6 ast)
SG Billy Thomas (16.2, 3.4, 3.8)
SF Kaniel Dickens (19.6, 5.3, 1.5)
PF John Thomas (13.2, 8.1, 1.2)
C Roderick Riley (10.5, 6.9, 0.5)
Head Coach: Joe Wolf

Team Leaders (Season)
Points: Elton Brown* 20.4, Kaniel Dickens 19.6
Rebounds: Elton Brown* 11.9, Rodrick Riley 6.9
Assists: Eddie Gill 8.5
* No longer with team

Team Leaders (Last 10 Games)
Points: Eddie Gill 19.4
Rebounds: Rodrick Riley 9.7
Assists: Eddie Gill 8.6

Key Losses
PF Elton Brown (Israel)

Assigned Players
Taurean Green (Denver)

Players with NBA Experience
Kaniel Dickens, Eddie Gill, Billy Thomas, John Thomas


6. Sioux Falls Skyforce (28-22) @ 3. Dakota Wizards
(29-21)

Previous Meetings:
Sioux Falls won the season series 7-3

December 9 - Dakota 115, @Sioux Falls 105
December 16 - Sioux Falls 96, @Dakota 90
January 9 - @Dakota 99, Sioux Falls 88
February 14 - @Sioux Falls 105, Dakota 102
February 17 - Sioux Falls 112, @Dakota 100
February 19 - @Sioux Falls 97, Dakota 95
February 25 - Sioux Falls 117, @Dakota 108
February 27 - @Dakota 116, Sioux Falls 106
March 28 - @Sioux Falls 124, Dakota 115
March 29 - @Sioux Falls 105, Dakota 103

Team Stats
DAK points for 107.8
DAK points against 105.8

SXF points for 105.0
SXF points against 104.1

Records
DAK Home Record 17-7 .708
SXF Road Record 9-15 .375


Dakota Wizards

After losing a very solid group of guards over the course of the season, the Wizards struggled some at the end of the season, but won their final two games to win the division. They still have the strong front line of Carlos Powell, Rod Benson and Kevin Lyde that rivals any group they will face in the D-League playoffs. Recently added forward Andre Patterson could also help up front, particularly when it comes to rebounding. The challenge for Dakota will be their guard play. Blake Ahearn is collecting his paycheck from the Miami Heat these days, and Dontell Jefferson makes good money in Latvia. They feature scorer Tony Gipson and fellow guard David Bell in the backcourt. The Wizards struggled against the Skyforce in the season series, but must take advantage of Carlos Powell’s ability to create. This game will be an intense matchup featuring the two oldest rivals in the D-League. The home-court advantage may be enough to get it done for Dakota, but it will surely be a close game.

Starting Lineup
PG Tony Gipson (12.8pts, 2..6reb, 4.3ast)
SG David Bell (12.8, 3.4, 3.8)
SF Carlos Powell (22.3, 6.5, 4.8)
PF Rod Benson (13.4, 12.1, 1.2)
C Kevin Lyde (12.2, 7.7, 2.0)
Head Coach: Duane Ticknor

Team Leaders (Season)
Points: Carlos Powell 22.3
Rebounds: Rod Benson 12.1
Assists: Dontell Jefferson* 5.0, Carlos Powell 4.8
* No longer with team

Team Leaders (Last 10 Games)
Points: Carlos Powell 24.7
Rebounds: Rod Benson 11.8
Assists: Carlos Powell 5.1, Tony Gipson 5.1

Key Losses
PG Blake Ahearn (Miami Heat) 19.0pts, 2.0reb, 3.5ast
PG Maurice Baker (France) 18.2pts, 6.6pts, 4.5ast
SG Dontell Jefferson (Latvia) 17.0pts, 4.7reb, 5.0 ast

Assigned Players
none

Players with NBA Experience
none


Sioux Falls Skyforce

The Skyforce had a rough start to the season, but quickly turned things around behind D-league MVP Kasib Powell. Unfortunately for them, Powell now suits up for the Miami Heat, and their other talented forward Bobby Jones spends his time with the Nuggets these days. Coach Nate Tibbetts has done a great job with his squad this season, and could have very easily won the coach of the year award. Without Powell, they will need Chris Alexander to have a big game in order to neutralize the Dakota front line. In the backcourt, David Bailey and Elton Nesbitt have been consistently scoring the ball throughout the season, and they should have a clear advantage against Dakota in this area. Power forward Glen McGowan has also stepped up his play since he was acquired from Tulsa, but the Skyforce have a thin bench at this point. If their guards can control the tempo of the game, Sioux Falls will have a chance to pull out a tough road win in the opening round of the playoffs.

Starting Lineup
PG David Bailey (15.4pts, 3.5reb, 5.6 ast)
SG Elton Nesbitt (15.4, 3.2, 3.6)
SF Carl Elliott (14.2, 4.5, 2.8)
PF Michael Joiner (10.3, 4.4, 1.0)
C Chris Alexander (11.6, 11.2, 0.9)
Head Coach: Nate Tibbetts

Team Leaders (Season)
Points: Kasib Powell* 22.2, Elton Nesbitt 15.4, David Bailey 15.4
Rebounds: Chris Alexander 11.2
Assists: David Bailey 5.6
* No longer with team

Team Leaders (Last 10 Games)
Points: David Bailey 23.0
Rebounds: Chris Alexander 12.6
Assists: David Bailey 5.8

Key Losses
SF Kasib Powell (Miami Heat) 22.2pts, 6.0reb, 3.0ast

Assigned Players
none

Players with NBA Experience
none
 


Feedback for this article may be sent to jim.hlavac@draftexpress.com mike.schmidt@draftexpress.com .

 

Stephane Lasme
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 7"
Weight: 213 lbs.
Birthday: 12/17/1982
32 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Leon MBA
Previous Team: Anadolu Efes , PRO
Drafted: Rnd 2, Pick #16 in 2007 Draft
by the Warriors
Positions:
Current: PF/C,
NBA: PF,
Possible: PF
Quick Stats:
10.2 Pts, 6.1 Rebs, 1.0 Asts


Coby Karl
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 4"
Weight: 209 lbs.
Birthday: 03/06/1983
31 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Homestead
Previous Team: Ludwigsburg , PRO
Drafted: Undrafted in Draft
Positions:
Current: SG,
NBA: SG,
Possible: PG/SG
Quick Stats:
8.3 Pts, 2.9 Rebs, 2.8 Asts


Jelani McCoy
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 10"
Weight: 245 lbs.
Birthday: 12/06/1977
37 Years Old
Teams:
High School: St. Augustine
Previous Team: , PRO
Drafted: Rnd 2, Pick #4 in 1998 Draft
by the Supersonics
Positions:
Current: C,
NBA: C,
Possible: C
Quick Stats:
9.0 Pts, 5.7 Rebs, 0.8 Asts


Sean Banks
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 7"
Weight: 206 lbs.
Birthday: 01/25/1985
29 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Bergen Catholic
Previous Team: Memphis , PRO
Drafted: Undrafted in Draft
Positions:
Current: SG/SF,
NBA: SG/SF,
Possible: SG
Quick Stats:
9.5 Pts, 2.3 Rebs, 1.2 Asts


Brandon Wallace
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 9"
Weight: 203 lbs.
Birthday: 03/14/1985
29 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Silver Bluff
Previous Team: South Carolina , PRO
Drafted: Undrafted in Draft
Positions:
Current: PF,
NBA: PF,
Possible: SF/PF
Quick Stats:
8.1 Pts, 6.5 Rebs, 1.2 Asts


Brian Chase
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 5' 10"
Weight: 170 lbs.
Birthday: 10/08/1981
33 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Paul L. Dunbar
Previous Team: Virginia Tech , PRO
Drafted: Undrafted in Draft
Positions:
Current: PG,
NBA: PG,
Possible: PG
Quick Stats:
8.8 Pts, 1.7 Rebs, 0.8 Asts


Devin Green
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 7"
Weight: 210 lbs.
Birthday: 10/25/1982
32 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Beechcroft
Previous Team: Hampton , PRO
Drafted: Undrafted in Draft
Positions:
Current: PG/SG/SF,
NBA: SG,
Possible: PG/SG/SF
Quick Stats:
12.0 Pts, 7.1 Rebs, 1.6 Asts


Robert Whaley
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 9"
Weight: 269 lbs.
Birthday: 04/16/1982
32 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Benton Harbor
Previous Team: Walsh , PRO
Drafted: Rnd 2, Pick #21 in 2005 Draft
by the Jazz
Positions:
Current: PF,
NBA: PF,
Possible: PF
Quick Stats:
4.2 Pts, 2.9 Rebs, 0.7 Asts


Eddie Gill
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 1"
Weight: 176 lbs.
Birthday: 08/16/1978
36 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Overland
Previous Team: Weber State , PRO
Drafted: Undrafted in Draft
Positions:
Current: PG,
NBA: PG,
Possible: PG
Quick Stats:
0.0 Pts, 0.3 Rebs, 0.0 Asts


Billy Thomas
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 4"
Weight: 208 lbs.
Birthday: 12/23/1975
38 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Loyola College Prep
Previous Team: Kansas , PRO
Drafted: Undrafted in Draft
Positions:
Current: SG,
NBA: SG,
Possible: SG
Quick Stats:
7.9 Pts, 2.8 Rebs, 1.9 Asts


Kaniel Dickens
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 8"
Weight: 215 lbs.
Birthday: 07/21/1978
36 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Denver East
Previous Team: Idaho , PRO
Drafted: Rnd 2, Pick #21 in 2000 Draft
by the Jazz
Positions:
Current: F,
NBA: F,
Possible: F
Quick Stats:
15.0 Pts, 2.0 Rebs, 0.0 Asts


John Thomas
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 9"
Weight: 260 lbs.
Birthday: 09/08/1975
39 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Roosevelt
Previous Team: Minnesota , PRO
Drafted: Rnd 1, Pick #25 in 1997 Draft
by the Knicks
Positions:
Current: F,
NBA: F,
Possible: F
Quick Stats:
4.9 Pts, 4.2 Rebs, 1.2 Asts


Taurean Green
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 1"
Weight: 173 lbs.
Birthday: 11/28/1985
29 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Cardinal Gibbons
Previous Team: Villeurbanne , PRO
Drafted: Rnd 2, Pick #22 in 2007 Draft
by the Trailblazers
Positions:
Current: PG,
NBA: PG,
Possible: PG
Quick Stats:
13.0 Pts, 2.6 Rebs, 4.3 Asts


Justin Cage
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 6"
Weight: 225 lbs.
Birthday: 06/26/1985
29 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Pike
Previous Team: Mons , PRO
Drafted: Undrafted in Draft
Positions:
Current: SF/PF,
NBA: SF,
Possible: SG/SF
Quick Stats:
9.3 Pts, 4.3 Rebs, 1.8 Asts


Joe Wolf
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 11"
Weight: 230 lbs.
Birthday: 12/17/1964
49 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Kohler
Previous Team: , PRO
Drafted: Rnd 1, Pick #13 in 1987 Draft
by the Clippers
Positions:
Current: C,
NBA: C,
Possible: C
Quick Stats:
0.0 Pts, 0.3 Rebs, 0.0 Asts


Elton Brown
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 8"
Weight: 270 lbs.
Birthday: 09/09/1983
31 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Warwick
Previous Team: Paris-Levallois , PRO
Drafted: Undrafted in Draft
Positions:
Current: PF/C,
NBA: PF,
Possible: PF/C
Quick Stats:
10.4 Pts, 5.4 Rebs, 0.7 Asts


Carlos Powell
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 7"
Weight: 222 lbs.
Birthday: 08/29/1983
31 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Wilson
Previous Team: South Carolina , PRO
Drafted: Undrafted in Draft
Positions:
Current: SF/PF,
NBA: SF,
Possible: SF/PF
Quick Stats:
11.7 Pts, 3.5 Rebs, 4.3 Asts


Rod Benson
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 10"
Weight: 235 lbs.
Birthday: 10/10/1984
30 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Torrey Pines
Previous Team: California , PRO
Drafted: Undrafted in Draft
Positions:
Current: PF/C,
NBA: PF/C,
Possible: PF/C
Quick Stats:
4.8 Pts, 2.5 Rebs, 0.8 Asts


Blake Ahearn
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 2"
Weight: 190 lbs.
Birthday: 05/27/1984
30 Years Old
Teams:
High School: De Smet Jesuit
Previous Team: Missouri State , PRO
Drafted: Undrafted in Draft
Positions:
Current: SG,
NBA: SG,
Possible: SG
Quick Stats:
12.1 Pts, 1.5 Rebs, 3.3 Asts


Dontell Jefferson
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 4"
Weight: 195 lbs.
Birthday: 12/15/1983
31 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Stephenson
Previous Team: Arkansas , PRO
Drafted: Undrafted in Draft
Positions:
Current: PG/SG,
NBA: PG,
Possible: PG
Quick Stats:
3.1 Pts, 2.1 Rebs, 2.0 Asts


Maurice Baker
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 1"
Weight: 178 lbs.
Birthday: 07/28/1979
35 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Madison
Previous Team: Santa Cruz , PRO
Drafted: Undrafted in Draft
Positions:
Current: G,
NBA: G,
Possible: G
Quick Stats:
1.0 Pts, 0.5 Rebs, 1.0 Asts


Kasib Powell
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 7"
Weight: 215 lbs.
Birthday: 03/18/1981
33 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Teaneck
Previous Team: Texas Tech , PRO
Drafted: Undrafted in Draft
Positions:
Current: SF,
NBA: SF,
Possible: SF
Quick Stats:
11.7 Pts, 5.2 Rebs, 1.7 Asts


Bobby Jones
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 7"
Weight: 211 lbs.
Birthday: 01/09/1984
30 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Long Beach Poly
Previous Team: Roma , PRO
Drafted: Rnd 2, Pick #7 in 2006 Draft
by the Timberwolves
Positions:
Current: SF,
NBA: SF,
Possible: SF
Quick Stats:
11.9 Pts, 5.9 Rebs, 1.2 Asts


Glen McGowan
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 9"
Weight: 240 lbs.
Birthday: 03/24/1981
33 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Notre Dame Prep
Previous Team: Pepperdine , PRO
Drafted: Undrafted in Draft
Positions:
Current: PF,
NBA: PF,
Possible: PF
Quick Stats:
16.6 Pts, 7.9 Rebs, 1.4 Asts


Carl Elliott
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 4"
Weight: 220 lbs.
Birthday: 04/09/1983
31 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Worcester Academy
Previous Team: Monterrey Regia Force , PRO
Drafted: Undrafted in Draft
Positions:
Current: PG,
NBA: PG,
Possible: PG
Quick Stats:
9.5 Pts, 3.2 Rebs, 3.5 Asts


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