Should Orlando Bring Rashard Lewis off the Bench?
The media in Orlando suggests the idea to Stan Van Gundy, and to their surprise, he doesn’t completely reject it. It’s not likely to happen anytime soon, but SVG has at least considered making the struggling Lewis the L’s most expensive sixth man. From the Sentinel: “Let’s face it: Rashard’s contract was outrageous whether he was a starter, bench player or became a Nobel Prize-winning physicist. We all know that he is struggling to get shots, let alone make them. He looks as if he’s loitering sometimes or just getting exercise. If Lewis, 31, played with the second team, he might be able to get into a shooter’s rhythm instead of being the third or even fourth option as a starter … Much to my surprise, Van Gundy didn’t reject out of hand the notion of Lewis as a sixth man. ‘It’s reasonable,’ Van Gundy said. Van Gundy even indicated he has toyed with rearranging all the furniture in the lineup — except at center, of course. But Stan says he has no plans to change Lewis’ role, adding that the defense already has lost its identity during this skid. Lewis, naturally, wasn’t wild about my idea — even if it could make him more productive. His face scrunched up and he shook his head after Thursday’s practice. He pretty much has been a starter since, oh, the sixth grade. ‘I don’t know if it would necessarily be better,’ Lewis said. ‘But I understand what you’re saying. Like [Dallas guard] Jason Terry. He comes off the bench, but plays starter’s minutes.’”