Two things about Hasheem Thabeet: 1) He is never going to be an offensive force in this league, he is defense and rebounding guy; 2) He needs a lot of work a lot of specialized coaching.
Could there be a better fit for him than Dikembe Mutombo? Somebody must carry on the tradition of the finger wag, and Thabeet could be that heir.
Mutombo was courtside for the Grizzlies last night, and according to the Commercial Appeal he may spend part of the summer working with the raw Thabeet.
It is believed, too, that the Griz might talk to Mutombo about working as a paid consultant in the off-season. Mutombo will spend a lot of time coaching Thabeet in the summer if the Griz have their way.
Thabeet had dinner with Mutombo Tuesday night and the two shared their first extended conversation.
This kind of mentoring situation worked with another raw big man in Andrew Bynum, who worked for a couple years with Kareem Abdul Jabbar. Memphis reached out to the NBA’s all-time leading scorer, but due to a battle with cancer he couldn’t take the job on. But Mutombo might be a better fit for Thabeet -- the kind of game that kept Mutombo in the league for 18 seasons is what Thabeet needs to do to be a success. The Grizzlies are not looking for a scorer; they want a guy to own the paint and the glass.
And someone to wag their finger after a block.