The Chaos had a few players with bird rights, but none of them were considered must haves, aside from maybe Kenny Gott, who has been the teams rock for the last few years. GM Whetzel had discussions with the players and told them that he would make offers for them, but they wouldn’t be the pay checks they were used to. One of those players didn’t take kindly to it.
Ronald Richardson had been an overpaid player since before he joined the Chaos. His 20+ million annual salary was what he expected and wasn’t going to play for LA for anything less. Richardson knew that no other teams would pay the aging center that kind of money, but that was his stance. Richardson got shown no love by other teams. He was offered the league minimum by every team that courted him. Whetzel initially offered a 2 year deal for a total of about 4.5 million, but Richardson refused it, saying he would only accept a 1 year deal. Whetzel offered a 1 year deal for just over the league minimum and Richardson just laughed. He ended up taking a minimum deal with the Sea Dogs instead. Not a huge loss for LA, but Richardson could have been a decent backup to Lindstrom.
The Chaos signed another big man to backup Lindstrom instead. William Littlefield is a young 26 year old from UNLV that will stay close to home. He is originally from Phelan, California and played 4 seasons with the Archers. He has a good inside game, plays decent defense and gets to the line often. He and Lorenzo Perry will split time filling in for Lindstrom.
Whetzel thought it was important to bring back Kenny Gott, who signed a 3 year deal for about $11 million per year. This is a reduction in salary for Gott, but he knows his role will be reduced and he is in the twilight years of his career. Gott’s veteran leadership will be a much needed part of the team success, even if he doesn’t play as much. Gott only played 33 games last year due to injuries.
Julian Alexander was a steal for a GM who like defensive players. He was signed using the team’s mid-level exception. Alexander is a 6’6″ SF that has very strong post defense, very quick hands and is a decent shot blocker. Alexander will split time with Gott at the SF position.
PG/SG James Bergmann was was signed to a 2 year deal. The Chaos have several PG’s this year so Bergmann will play more at the SG spot behind Del Doyle. Bergmann is a 3 time All-Defensive Second Team player and his quick hands have helped the Chaos be one of the best defensive teams for a few years.
A new PG and 3 point sharpshooter was signed two a 2 year deal. Preston Braun will likely start at PG. He last played for New Jersey and averaged 10.8 ppg and 6 assists, while getting 1.5 steals per game. Whetzel liked Braun’s defensive numbers as well as his sharpshooting.
Hopefully training camps go well for the new players as well as for Lindstrom, who had a great camp last season and had a breakout year.
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