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Monday, July 2, 2012

NBA Draft Grades (Part 3)

Oklahoma City Thunder - Perry Jones (28)

Grade: A


One of the best organizations were able to land a huge talent all the way down at the end of the first round. Jones has knee concerns, but as a player, he is definitely a top 20 pick. He may not be what everyone expected him to be, but he has the ability to be a nice role player. He gives the Thunder a stretch four and another long, athlete to play on defense. I would have made this exact pick if I were Presti.

Orlando Magic - Andrew Nicholson (19), Kyle O'Quinn (49)

Grade: B-


The Magic took two solid small school big men who might be able to turn some heads in Central Florida. Nicholson has a nice scoring arsenal and will be asked to use it from Day One on what will likely be a watered down Magic line up.

Philadelphia 76ers - Maurice Harkless (15), Arnett Moultrie (27)

Grade: B


Maurice Harkless is a coachable player that should take well to Doug Collins' critical ways. He has a lot he needs to work on and Collins will be able to help him. They had some options at the 4 position at #15, but chose to trade up later to #28 to get Moultrie, who they liked. Moultrie adds some athleticism to the position and was a good value pick, despite the fact that Im not a huge fan of him. He can give them some scoring a la Marresse Speights. I thought Draymond Green would have been a nice fit in the late first, but its personal preference at that point.


Phoenix Suns - Kendall Marshall (13)

Grade: B-


Unfortunately for them, they were unable to get their hands on any of the top wings available in the draft. The last hope was Jeremy Lamb, who went one spot ahead at 12. Phoenix might have tipped their hand a bit much, causing Morey and the Rockets to trade up two spots to get ahead of them. Marshall was a guy they also really liked though, as they brought him in twice to workout and raved about him after the selection. He was the sensible pick here, but it would have been nice to have Lamb. Marshall can't be forced into action too quickly.

Portland Trailblazers - Damian Lillard (6), Meyers Leonard (11), Will Barton (40)

Grade: TBD


There were two directions Portland could have went in to fill the void at PG and C. They could have taken Drummond and then Marshall or went in the direction they ended up going. It was obvious before the draft which way they would go, but time will tell if it was the right move. To make it more interesting, Barnes was sitting there at #6 too. Portland was definitely put in some tough spots where your scouting department and decision making is key so I can see us looking back at this in a few years and either completely bashing or applauding the front offices decisions. New GM Neil Olshey definitely put his head out there with this one, but youve got to take some risk and trust your instincts, and I like what he ended up with. Lillard looks like a nice player. Leonard is boom or bust and I wouldnt be surprised if he did bust, but hes much better value than Zeller. Barton also has some decent potential for a second rounder - that was a good pick for sure. If I had to grade this now, Id give it a C+.


Sacramento Kings - Thomas Robinson (5)

Grade: B


I love the Thomas Robinson pick, but Petrie was put in a situation where it would have been near impossible to mess it up. He did make the correct pick though, so good for him. I wish they would have held onto their second rounder, Doron Lamb would have really topped of the draft for them. Im sure Petrie wasnt the one who wanted to pick up cash for the pick, however.

San Antonio Spurs - Marcus Denmon (59)

Grade: A


As everyone in the second round targeted overseas guys, the Spurs went against conventional wisdom and took Marcus Denmon. The Spurs did it again, getting value out of a late spot. I thought of Denmon as a big sleeper and after the Spurs took him, I feel really good about him being able to contribute in some sort of role. He can be a Gary Neal type of player at the next level.


Toronto Raptors - Terrence Ross (8), Quincy Acy (37), Tomislav Zubcic

Grade: D-


If they get Nash, he may make Ross look a little better, but this draft still reeks of ineptitude. When we look back on it, I think we'll cringe at seeing Ross above Rivers, Lamb, Marshall, and Drummond. Or at least 3 of the 4. I really read Colangelo wrong on this pick. To top it off, both of his second rounders sucked too. Acy is an energy guy that can't rebound. Usually that doesnt go well. DeMarre Carroll and Renaldo Balkman both fit that bill too and they haven't had much success - and they were more versatile and skilled. Zubcic is the kind of guy that looks good in an empty gym, but based on everything else, you can almost already write off this Euro who fits the soft stereotype to the core. Guys who know international basketball thought Zubcic was a joke.

Utah Jazz - Kevin Murphy (47)

Grade: INC


The Jazz didn't do much, opting not to trade into the first round and instead hang onto their lowly selection at 47. Murphy is just your average second rounder who will fight to make the team.

Washington Wizards - Bradley Beal (3), Tomas Satoransky (32)

Grade: A-


Wizards had to be relieved when Beal was available. Hes a perfect fit for them and can be a franchise changer. With their two picks, they were able to get Wall's friend and Vesely's friend which doesn't mean anything, but based on the Irving/Barnes rumors, apparently some people think its a big deal. Satoransky has potential and the Wizards may hope for him to play some PG once he comes over. He's not much of a PG now, however. I thought they needed an upgrade over Mack and Tyshawn Taylor would have been a nice fit, but Satoransky does have more upside.





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