Throughout the NBA playoffs, where we Raptor fans are left to wallow, Raptors Republic brings you the 100 Words Series. Calling on RR writers and other Raptor scribes from around the internet and MSM, we’ll provide the Republic with 100-word takes on players, coaches, management and announcers. Look for these two or three times a week, continuing today with Landry Fields. The mission I charged the contributors with was simple: you have 100 words (prose, poetry, song, whatever) to discuss said player.
Arsenalist, Raptors Republic
He needs to become more like Tracy Murray. Some three-point shooting, timely athleticism, a bit of defense, and once in blue moon a highlight play which makes you say, “You know what, if I had some money to waste, I think I’d buy his jersey”. The easiest way to address the lack of flexibility on the roster is for the existing players to improve, and you can make an argument that Fields is at the top of that list. His revival began before the games stopped mattering so let’s not write his improvement off completely; his jumper was better and he appeared more confident on the floor, no doubt helped by his recovery from injury. Whether he goes back to rookie-year levels or sticks to his current form is the question. I say he surprises us.
Blake Murphy, Raptors Republic
Stealing a page from Steve’s book here with a Haiku:
Can’t shoot anymore
Contract is an albatross
Elaine Alden tho
In seriousness, hopefully the offseason to recover and retool his shot following wrist surgery helps fix his stroke. And his confidence, since his 14 three-point attempts were just as troubling as the fact that he hit just two. His defense is fine and the little things he does are great but it’s all not quite enough if he can’t space the floor like he was brought in to do. I expect a rebound year.
Garrett Hinchey, Raptors Republic
Let’s get through the good stuff before we discuss the abnormally-large-even-for-an-elephant elephant in the room: Landry Fields is a character player, a guy who hustles on defense and generally seems to care about his teammates, and a contender for having the most smokin’ hot wife in the league. In all these facets, he’s fantastic.
Now, to the contract. Oh, that contract.
Sure, it wasn’t his fault, but the albatross of a deal that Fields has is an indicator of the moves made by the previous organization: short-sighted, spur-of-the-moment, and quickly fixed through redundancy (in this case, the Gay deal). Do I think Landry could be a solid backup if he fixed his shot? Absolutely. Do I think he’ll be best known as a Raptor for embodying the poor spending habits of the Colangelo regime? Without a doubt.
Tim W., Raptors Republic
The reasoning behind signing Landry Fields was a bad one (to try and sign a 38 year old PG to a $30 million contract), he was horribly overpaid (he probably could have been had for half the amount he signed for), had a previously existing, although unknown, injury and he ended up having, easily, the worst season of his career.
Amazingly, despite all that, Fields is a guy I’d want to keep, and not just because he’s pretty much untradeable. He’s a high IQ player who knows his role, plays good defense and, when healthy, can score a bit.
Sam Holako, Raptors Republic
Not sure what else we could have expected considering he was signed to the wrong contract for the wrong intentions. Didn’t help he was injured for part of the season, but he’s a smart player, and if he can find his three point range again, he can be a valuable backup. I would have ended with an haiku, but Blake nailed it.