Cleat Geeks

Clear the Dekk

One of the pieces in the Chris Paul trade was Sam Dekker, he is a small forward/power forward and being with the Clippers should present more opportunities to prove himself as a legit forward. He is only 23, but has tons of potential. He has been in the association for two years and in his sophomore season, he averaged 6.5 points per game while appearing in parts of 77 games for the Houston Rockets last season. He broke his left hand in April prior to the playoffs and missed the entire series against the Oklahoma City Thunder.

What drives his potential is his ability to score in multiple ways. He is 6’9 and can post up and dunk while he can also penetrate the lane and draw fouls, which leads to foul line shots. One of the areas of improvement will be his ability to rebound the basketball and be a compliment shot blocker to DeAndre Jordan and Blake Griffin. Add to that, he should be the biggest benefit when teams are guarding Jordan and Griffin, which should give him a legit chance to take his game to the next level. While he will not be a starter, Dekker must be a key contributor for the “new” Clippers franchise to prove himself.

During his last season playing alongside Frank Kaminsky, Dekker shot over 50% from the field and averaged just under 15 points per game. What could be overlooked is his personality, as being in L.A. appears to be a perfect combination, especially in the locker room. Positive chemistry is always welcome in any locker room, but especially with the Clippers as there have been rumors of tense relationships between Jordan and Griffin. If his Twitter account is any indication, L.A. is the place for him.

Dekker will be a bigger piece to the Clippers success than he was with Houston, and he knows there will be higher expectations playing in a bigger market. He is a legend in high school basketball circles in Wisconsin and it may take some time for him to adjust to a bigger market. The best way to accomplish this is by having a solid preseason, which is only a couple of weeks long this year.

His numbers in his first two seasons in the NBA may not be that impressive, but his numbers will only improve as he gets more minutes. Any NBA fan should appreciate what Dekker brings to the table both on and off the court, he takes his job seriously but does not obsess over mistakes. When you compare him to the juggernauts of the NBA, he is not close to being a household name but that is not a drawback, it’s what adds to the greatness of this game. If he is successful with the Clippers, Dekker will be noticed more by NBA fans, players and coaches.

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