Don't expect to see the Atlanta Hawks' newest addition on the court in the playoffs. This move was likely made with next year's training camp (if there is one) in mind. From that standpoint, lets take a closer look at Rolle.
Rolle is listed at six-foot-eleven and 235 pounds and was drafted with the 51st selection in the 2010 NBA Draft by Oklahoma City. Rolle was traded to Indiana where he was released in training camp after increasing his stock with a good showing in Summer League.
After being waived, Rolle moved on to the Maine Red Claws of the NBA Development League but suffered a knee injury just two games into the season. He came back late to play in 15 games where he averaged 14.1 points 5.5 rebounds, 1.5 steals, 1.3 assists, and 1.2 blocks per game. If there is a downside, it is that Rolle is already 25 years old.
Admittedly I haven't had the opportunity to watch Rolle play very often. He was at LSU as a sophomore before transferring and playing his final season at Louisiana Tech. After covering the Summer League this past offseason I do remember quite a buzz around Rolle. It was thought that Indiana considered buying out Solomon Jones' contract so that they could keep Rolle.
When I don't know a lot about a player like Rolle I turn to Scott Schroeder of Ridiculous Upside for answers. Here are a few things that he had to say about the Rolle signing and some thoughts from his play in the Orlando Summer League.
I really was impressed with Rolle in his game after not having high hopes for the 6-foot-10 power forward out of Louisiana Tech. The long and athletic big man didn't look as soft as I remember on his way to a solid 13 points, five boards and a block in under 19 minutes of action as the starting power forward. If he can rebound as well as he did this game (five rebounds don't tell the whole story, folks), he'd probably be high on the list of D-League call-ups going into next season.
Magnum's an interesting player, and should at least be as productive as the Hawks current crop of backup bigs is, with the exception of Zaza Pachulia. He will wear #25 for the Hawks.
"I've got a chance to come in and work and finish up the season with the fellas pretty strong," he said. "Every day I have just got to work and earn my spot."
Atlanta has often been criticized for signing older players that have passed the point of usefulness to round out their bench instead of going for a younger player that could potentially surprise. Perhaps this is a step in the right direction as only time will tell. Congratulations to Magnum Rolle and welcome to the Hawks family.