Mar 24, 2013; Miami, FL, USA; Miami Heat small forward LeBron James (6) dribbles the ball against Charlotte Bobcats small forward Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (14) in the first period at the American Airlines Arena. Mandatory Credit: Robert Mayer-USA TODAY Sports

Charlotte Bobcats Season In Review: Michael Kidd-Gilchrist

The Charlotte Bobcats selected Michael Kidd-Gilchrist with the second overall pick in last year’s draft. After winning a National Championship at Kentucky, Kidd-Gilchrist looked to bring his defensive intensity to the Queen City.

Kidd-Gilchrist averaged 9.0 points, 5.8 rebounds, and shot 45.8% from the field in 78 games this season. He made 77 starts and averaged 26 minutes. Here’s what Roberto Gato writers had to say about MKG’s rookie campaign:

Bryan’s Grade: C+

Kidd-Gilchrist had the rookie season I thought he would have. He was a good defender right out of the gate, a solid rebounder, and pretty good in transition. He was also an awful shooter, and his half court offense suffered as a result.

The thing is, if it wasn’t for Mike Dunlap’s mental lapses this year, MKG could’ve had an even better rookie season. Dunlap forgot about Kidd-Gilchrist in too many fourth quarters, and his minutes, obviously, suffered. With a new coach in place next season, MKG should put up better numbers. I’ll give MKG a C+, because, like I said, he had the season I thought he would have. Nothing better, nothing worse.

Edward’s Grade: C+

Kidd-Gilchrist was everything he was billed to be this season. His size, athleticism, lateral quickness and length matches up defensively with at least three positions on the floor. Kidd-Gilchrist at this defensive peak could be a real stat stuffer. He’s an above-average rebounder, does a good job of contesting shots and forcing turnovers. He has a good motor and plays well in the open floor. It’s frightening to think about what he could do under a good defensive-minded head coach. He has all the tools to be one of the best defenders in basketball.

Statistically, Kidd-Gilchrist was expectedly underwhelming. He has raw offensive tools, an unreliable jumpshot and isn’t much of a shot-creator or playmaker. Despite the hitch in his jumpshot, he made 74% of his free throws on the season. Kidd-Gilchrist’s jumper will be the key to unlocking his offensive game. There’s no expectation that he’ll ever become Reggie Miller, but he needs enough of a jumper to keep the defense honest.

Kidd-Gilchrist will turn 20 before the 2013-14 season. He has a long career ahead of him as a solid rotation player. While he didn’t do much, if anything to be a candidate for the NBA’s Rookie of the Year, he’s shown signs that he can bring the defensive energy and intangibles the Bobcats need going forward.

What Grade Would You Give MKG For The Season?

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