OpinionFebruary 28, 2006

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The First Annual All-Nene Teams

By Brett Roberts

The All-Nene teams are dedicated to those players that could be prime-time starters, but instead find themselves in time-share situations at their position, or, in most cases, not even starting at all. These teams are inspired by Nene Maybyner Hilario of the Denver Nuggets, who despite being very talented has been stuck behind All-Star forward Kenyon Martin and teammate Marcus Camby.

In parentheses you will find the number of first- and second-team votes each player received from the ten judges.

All-Nene First Team

PG: Jameer Nelson, Orlando (6 first-team, 4 second-team votes)
Jameer Nelson is a classic Nene point guard. But this may not be the case much longer. The Magic just recently traded his competition at PG, but now he may split mins with Carlos Arroyo. Time will tell with Jameer Nelson, but so far, he hasn’t been given his chance to break out.

SG: Mike Miller, Memphis (10, 3)
Mike Miller got some nods as a starter, but never gets too many minutes per game, and surely could put up better stats if he saw starter’s minutes. Instead he spends time in the ten-man Memphis rotation.

SF: Andres Nocioni, Chicago (6, 3)
Not sure what the voters saw here other than a solid gritty forward, but the all-Nene small forward is Andres Nocioni of the Chicago Bulls, Argentine teammate of Manu Ginobili in the Olympic games.

PF: Charlie Villanueva, Toronto (5, 5)
Villanueva is the first player with no eyebrows to appear on an All-Nene team. But in all seriousness, the kid just flat out has game. Ironically, he is now starting, but still has some ways to go before he is prime time.

C: Alonzo Mourning, Miami (8, 0)
Fact: Mourning is the best center in the league that doesn’t start.

All-Nene Second Team

PG: Mo Williams, Milwaukee (3, 1)
With three first-team votes, sixth man Mo Williams was voted as a possible Nene candidiate. Keep an eye on Williams should TJ Ford go down again for any period of time.

SG: Eddie House, Phoenix (2, 3)
House can flat out shoot the rock.

SF: Mickael Pietrus, Golden State (3, 7)
Pietrus earned his way into the league with his D, and is becoming known as a shooter, too.

PF: Donyell Marshall, Cleveland (5, 2)
A savvy vet who can board and drill treys.

C: Channing Frye, New York (3, 8)
A promising rookie, Frye only gets his court time in little stints, but usually gets 20-25 minutes per game and performs very well in that playing time, averaging 14.5 points per game.

Not surprisingly, Brett Roberts uses the name Nene when posting in the Cafe’s forums.

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