SAN ANTONIO - As the postseason continues toward its conclusion, perhaps Friday night in Arco Arena, the issues that Geoff Petrie has to address during the offseason are increasingly apparent. Besides resolving Rick Adelmanís
situation - and assuming that the roster will be adjusted to complement Ron Artestís skills - he clearly has to upgrade the roster in two areas - power forward and perimeter shooting. Brad Miller is a high post center who can pass, shoot, and there was a time, collect close to 10 rebounds per game. But the power forward spot has been problematic, particularly on the defensive side, since Chris Webber blew out his knee in Dallas. Petrie undoubtedly will try to maneuver to acquire someone who can offset Millerís lack of mobility and athleticism.
Kenny Thomas is only 6-foot-7, and erratic at both ends. Shareef Abdur-Rahim is only 6-foot-9, and probably best-suited as a reserve. He is not nearly as quick or effective as he once was, though his jump-hook remains is a terrific option.
And when you study the Spurs - the model for Western Conference teams, if not the league - the their balance is exceptional. They make it difficult for opponents to attack the basket, which makes it imperative to (a) score in
transition and (b) space the floor with three-point shooters. In the deciding three minutes in Game 5, for instance, Mike Bibby was the Kingsí only consistent outside shooter on the floor, and he labored through a 3-for-12 night.
The effort is there, and Artest is sensational, but the Kings have holes. Petrie will have a busy summer.