Gerald Henderson, the Bobcat's first-round pick in this years draft, has picked up two DNP-coach's decisions and two appearances of four minutes or less in the past five games. This should reflect more on the coaching of Larry Brown than Henderson's skill level, but regardless, a first-round pick is getting minutes and the Charlotte Observer's Rick Bonnell suggests a trip to Maine.
According to David Arnott over at Rufus on Fire, channeling his inner Donnie Walsh, Gerald Henderson is just too good for the D-League:
My general stance on sending players to the D-League is that there are guys, like Ajinca last year, who get close to nothing from being in the NBA. They're not good enough to learn and improve from playing against the top competition in practice and in games. Therefore, send them to Iowa to learn and improve until they're good enough to actually get something from the big club. Henderson isn't even close to that. Dude holds his own whenever he's on the floor. He's probably best served by playing against NBA competition more than he is by playing 35 minutes per game against D-Leaguers.
Well, David, I'm going to disagree, but let's get one thing correct before I get into this: He'd be sent to Maine, not Iowa. While in Maine, he'd learn from Mike Procopio, one of the best talent developer's in America (seriously, google it).
While in Maine, he'd be greeted with a younger, hungrier and possibly better group of swingmen than he has with the Bobcats. Billy Thomas, Billy Walker, Mario West and Trey Gilder all have NBA talent and all are working hard to get back to the NBA - yes, they all have been in the NBA within the past year. Seems that he may be able to improve by being pushed by those teammates every day just so he can say he didn't have to come off of the bench in the D-League.
If Henderson was sent to the D-League for the rest of December, he'd be matched up against former NBAer's Donnell Taylor, Reece Gaines and Cartier Martin while being checked by one of the best defensive players in the D-League in Fort Wayne's Ron Howard. For 35 minutes a game, none of those are easy match-ups.
Hmm, sitting on the bench and losing confidence or playing and practicing with NBA fringe talent (which is what Henderson is now, FYI) for a couple of weeks?
For me, the decision seems easy. D-League, Hooah!