Amazon Contextual Product Ads

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

2013 NBA Mock Draft - Post NCAA Tournament Edition (w/ Commentary)

1. Charlotte Bobcats - FR Nerlens Noel, F/C, Kentucky

I'm not a doctor nor do I play one on TV, so I cant give an opinion on how alarming his ACL injury should be going forward. Team doctors will have the luxury of checking him out and drawing their own conclusions. If they are worried, then maybe Charlotte would look at Ben McLemore here. If not though, Noel should be the pick. While Im not a doctor, I do feel qualified enough to say Noel has the highest upside and talent in this draft and produced admirably when he was healthy. Injuries withstanding, he should be the #1 pick in this draft.

2. Orlando Magic - FR Marcus Smart, G, Oklahoma State

This pick could get interesting with Trey Burke's performance in the NCAA Tournament. I was always a Burke believer, but after his tourney run, a pick in the top 5 doesn't sound like a stretch anymore. And as for Smart, there are legitimate concerns about his ability to make handle pressure and make plays consistently with the ball in his hands. While his work ethic, defense, and body make him a seemingly safe pick, you may not be getting the natural point guard you want. With Burke on the other hand, you know you will be getting a guy who can run the point effectively.

3. Phoenix Suns - FR Ben McLemore, SG, Kansas

The Suns have been the floor landing spot for every mock I've done the past couple of months and it does seem like a perfect match. Phoenix desperately needs help at shooting guard, particularly from behind the arc. McLemore needs to go somewhere without a lot of pressure to be a star, and Phoenix is generally laid back. McLemore is still coming into his own in terms of both as a basketball player and a young man, having been a late bloomer in high school, and needs to get use to all the expectations around him. Coming in, McLemore can make an impact immediately as a shooter and grow into a bigger role as he gets more comfortable.

4. Cleveland Cavaliers - SO Otto Porter, SF, Georgetown

Cleveland's front office has used steals as a big indicator for feature success in the draft recently and Porter averaged 1.8 per game this season. Porter's lateral quickness is rather weak, but his excellent anticipation skills (not just playing passing lanes but denying drives before they can even start) and 7ft+ wingspan make him a valuable team defender moving forward. Porter is also a good passer on offense and can be a distributor for the Cavs when they need Irving to step up more as a score. Overall, Porter will be a solid fit for any team and has a very low bust rate.

5. Detroit Pistons - SO Trey Burke, PG, Michigan

This pick comes down to Burke and Oladipo and just like award voting this year, I see Burke getting the edge. Burke to the Pistons would bring a lot of excitement to the local fan base, but more importantly, it would fill the role of point guard for years to come. Unlike Brandon Knight, Burke is already ready to lead an offense and could take over the starting job from Day 1. With Drummond and Monroe inside, being able to lock up another position - especially at point - will be big for the franchise moving forward.

6. New Orleans Hornets - JR Victor Oladipo, G/F, Indiana

New Orleans actually had a middle of the pack offense this year, but one of the worst defensive teams. Pairing Oladipo with Anthony Davis could quickly turn that around and push New Orleans into respectability. Hopefully they'll start to push the ball more as well to take advantage of Oladipo's physical gifts.

The Hornets could also look at Shabazz Muhammad here. If they were willing to take Rivers last season, then another selfish, high usage, pampered high school player shouldn't bring up red flags to them either.

7. Sacramento Kings - FR Shabazz Muhammad, SF, UCLA

Half of the game of basketball is defense. Of the 8 worst teams in defensive efficiency this season, the Kings are the 7th of the group the come up already in this mock draft. Yes, 8 of the 9 worst defensive teams in the league also happen to be the worst teams overall as well. So it should make sense to the Kings that in order to get out of the lottery every year, they may need to start making some picks that could make an impact on that end. Because of this reason, Cody Zeller makes a lot of sense here. But by the same token, the Kings also have their choice of offensively gifted guys like Alex Len, Isaiah Austin, Shabazz Muhammad, and Anthony Bennett. Thats why - knowing them - I have them going with one of the latter choices.

8. Oklahoma City Thunder - 1992 Rudy Gobert, F/C, Cholet

The Thunder have more room to take a risk than most. Sam Presti has no reason to be in fear of losing his job, their roster doesn't have any extreme pressing needs, and they have had a good track record of developing talent. Therefore, I would put Presti and the Thunder as a prime candidate to take a guy like Steven Adams, Giannis Adetokunbo, Isaiah Austin, or Rudy Gobert. Right now, Gobert seems to be the most highly ranked, but the order could easily reverse in the coming months.

9. Washington Wizards - FR Anthony Bennett, PF, UNLV

For the longest time the Wizards have been featured in the top 5 of mock drafts, but after a winning streak spearheaded by John Wall, they now find themselves just barely inside the top 10. John Wall has proven to be worth being built around during this stretch and the Wizards should look for players that can compliment him. A skilled power forward like Bennett who can stretch the floor and get down up and down in transition would be welcomed. Wizards played surprisingly effective defense this year, getting a offensive weapon down low would be great.

10. Minnesota Timberwolves - SR CJ McCollom, G, Lehigh

CJ McCollom picked a good year to be a senior. Even with an injury, he is kind of the defacto scoring guard pick for a team picking in this range. Besides him, you're mostly likely looking at a big gamble with Archie Goodwin. A gamble I may not be opposed to, but I don't think any team is comfortable picking him this high at this point. Maybe workouts and interviews will give a general manager enough confidence to roll with Goodwin in the lottery - the place where his talent level suggests he gets picked.

11. Philadelphia 76ers - SO Cody Zeller, PF, Indiana

At this point in the draft, Zeller should be considered a steal. I can understand if you don't want to take Zeller in the top portion of the lottery because of his upside, but you can't pass up him here. Zeller will do much better playing in the NBA with a more spread floor and his lateral abilities and IQ on defense will make him a solid defender right away. Put him in a better role than he was put in at Indiana and he will look like a much better player.

12. Portland Trailblazers - FR Mitch McGary, F/C, Michigan

In general, I don't think the tournament ultimately helped many guys. It will all balance out in the end and a lot of things that were seen are things that GMs would discover later on once they dissected the regular season tape more. One thing they wouldn't see on the tape is anything to suggest the breakout "March" McGary had during the tournament. He is one guy who used the tournament to showcase skills that folks just didn't think he had. McGary has the size to play both positions inside, is light on his feet, plays very hard, has a NBA body, and showed off a surprising ability to hit mid-range jumpers. He looks like a glorified Nick Collison - or the Nick Collison who played on the Thunder around 2007 (a very valuable player).

13. Dallas Mavericks - SO Michael Carter-Williams, PG, Syracuse

The Mavericks could use help everywhere, but there seems to be a consensus among fans that they want a point guard. Do you get a point guard in Michael Carter-Williams? Personally, I don't think so and Im not going to rehash all the reasons why again and again. No matter what I think, there is surely a team out there that will find the idea of a 6'7 point guard intriguing enough to take in the lottery. Maybe it will be the owner who also wants to bring in Brittany Griner for a summer league spot.

14. Phoenix Suns - SR Mason Plumlee, C, Duke

I've been saying all year that Plumlee is overrated and ranked much farther ahead of Dieng, Withey, and other centers for no reason. With Louisville winning the championship, Dieng seems to be finally getting attention and that train of thought may be finally getting ready to chance. If I had my way, Plumlee wouldn't be close to the lottery. I just don't see any intrigue at all. Maybe the Suns gamble and go with a Steven Adams here since this is their second draft pick in the lottery. For now, I'll put Plumlee in this spot but simply as a placeholder. The time is coming where he will be relegated to where he should be drafted.

15. Milwaukee Bucks - FR Glenn Robinson III, sF, Michigan

Milwaukee gets up and down the court, creating a lot of possessions, but doesn't score the ball efficiently. Glenn Robinson III isn't a game changer, but he will be able to take advantage of opportunities in transition created by Brandon Jennings. Robinson III is an explosive athlete that runs the court well and can also hit jumpers from all over the court with ease when left open. He wont create much off the dribble for himself beyond a simple pump fake, but that is what a slashing point guard like Brandon Jennings is for.

16. Boston Celtics - 1994 Giannis Adetokunbo, SF, Filathlitikos

Ainge is no stranger to taking risks nor is he afraid of losing his job. He recently went out to scout the "6'10 point guard", who will most likely end up playing the small forward role in the NBA. Adetokunbo has point forward skills, but the most intriguing part of him is his physical gifts. He glides around the court in similar fashion to Kevin Durant and possessing oven mitts for hands. He will likely spend a lot of time in the D-League as he plays on a low level team in Europe, but he could be better than just about anyone in this draft if he turns out.

17. Utah Jazz - FR Isaiah Austin, PF, Baylor

The Jazz could be in a tough spot if things shape up this way. There is no point guard worth taking this high and there are also a lack of 3-pt bombers at the SG position in this spot either. There are a dearth of big men, but thats not necessarily what a team with Al Jefferson, Enes Kanter, and Derrick Favors needs. Maybe they trade the pick, but ultimately I think its more likely we see a big man go in this spot than one of the remaining guards on the board. Isaiah Austin is a highly intriguing player, one who could be one of the best scorers to come out of this class. He makes plays off the dribble like a guard to set up jump shots, plays smarts, and reminds some scouts a bit of Dirk. He is well worth the risk at this spot.

18. Atlanta Hawks - SO Alex Len, C, Maryland

The Hawks have constantly looked for a center to allow Al Horford to play power forward full time. Danny Ferry chose to zero in on some sharp shooters last offseason and now it is time to find a true post threat so tjhey can establish an inside-out attack. Ferry comes from the Spurs organization so finding a true offensive threat in the post is a priority. He also was in charge of the Cavs when they had Zydrunas Ilgauskas - who happens to be the player Alex Len is most often compared to. While Len's offensive skills are unquestioned, teams will worry about the mental and physical challenges the NBA game will present to him.

19. Chicago Bulls - FR Archie Goodwin, SG, Kentucky

The Bulls needs a shooting guard and while they would prefer a guy who can shoot, Goodwin has too much upside and talent to pass over for someone like Jamaal Franklin at this point. Goodwin struggled along with the rest of the UK freshman, but he was one of the few fighting until the very last game. Goodwin showed promising fearlessness and aggressive and while it didn't translate efficiently this season, it is a good sign for his potential moving forward. He has one of the quickest first steps in the draft and combines that with a good frame and explosiveness at the rim. Give him time and he could become a great isolation threat in the league.

20. Atlanta Hawks - SG Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, SG, Georgia

Caldwell-Pope's decision still seems to be up in the air as he waits for more feedback from NBA teams. He grinded away on a bad team at Georgia and things aren't looking much better for the Bulldogs a year from now. It makes sense for Caldwell-Pope to leave now even though he still has some growing up to do and has much to learn as a team player. He makes a lot of silly mistakes and has questionable awareness on defense, but his ability to score the ball makes him intriguing. He combines a nice first step with a silky smooth jumper, and is able to hit dribble pull-ups with ease. He may be the most talented, well-rounded (scoring wise) shooting guard this side of the lottery.

21. Utah Jazz - SR Erick Green, G, Virginia Tech

We are still waiting to hear whether or not Myck Kabongo, Shane Larkin, and Ray McCallum decide to enter the draft. As you can see from this mock draft, after the top 3 PGs are off the board there is a hole available for a point guard to grab with some good workouts. Erick Green could sneak up on some people. He's 6'3 with long arms, is an excellent scorer, strong shooter off the dribble, pushes the ball in transition, plays hard, and is a high character guy who will impress during interviews. He has always been a scorer in college due to playing on a weak team, but he is unselfish and smart enough to adjust to being a full time point guard.

22. Brookyln Nets - JR Gorgui Dieng, C, Louisville

Nets biggest need is the center spot and thats not a bad need to have at this position. Steven Adams, Jeff Withey, and Kelly Olynyk are all still left on the board. Dieng is a guy who could be the best defensive anchor of the bunch - including Withey who led the NCAA in shot blocking - and also has some useful offensive skills. He has good touch from the foul line extended area and is also a good passer from the same area. Dieng is set to graduate early and has a very interesting background that is worth checking out.

23. Indiana Pacers - JR Kelly Olynyk, F/C, Gonzaga

Olynyk has slipped far enough in this mock and the Pacers would be happy to have him as a possible replacement for David West. Olynyk is an awesome offensive player who will thrive in the pick and roll game. He will need to find the right team that can utilize him in such a role - and use him enough to make it worth having him on the court on the defensive end as well. He was one of the best stories of this college hoops season, coming off a redshirt season in which he used his time to really improve his post game.

24. New York Knicks - FR Steven Adams, C, Pittsburgh

When it comes to guarding a chair, Steven Adams may look better than any prospect doing so. It was odd seeing Adams come out, given his apparent desire to attend school in the USA and get an education on top of his basketball dreams. Adams was extremely raw at the beginning of the year, but got more and more comfortable for Pitt as the season went on. Still by the end of the season, he still had a lot of work to do to even become a good college player. But there is no doubt his upside is there. He has great physical tools and the biggest question with him will be his tentativeness. If he doesn't want to end up as a Hasheem Thabeet type bust, then he will need to make sure he doesn't play with the same kind of motor as him. He has to start getting used to throwing his weight around consistently.

25. Los Angeles Clippers - SR Jeff Withey, C, Kansas

Withey's block shot to foul ratio really doesn't get talked about near enough. What he did on the defensive end of the court in college was truly remarkable. Using his volleyball background as a guide, Withey mastered the art of blocking shots cleaning and most importantly - keeping them inbounds. He was Kansas's most important player for defensive reasons alone, but he also was able to score on offensive with a unblockable hook shot. Withey, for the second straight year, played a really good tournament even as the rest of his team struggled.

26. Minnesota Timberwolves - 1993 Sergey Karasev, SF, Triumph Moscow

The son of a coach, Karasev has an excellent feel on the offensive end and is also a great shooter. And while I love his game on that end of the court, his poor lateral quickness on defensive is something his NBA team will have to work hard to hide. Karasev has said already that he will enter the draft and should be a likely first rounder.

27. Denver Nuggets - JR Cory Jefferson, F/C, Baylor

Cory Jefferson had a March run that rivaled Mitch McGary's, only problem is he did it in the NIT. He averaged 21 points on 72% shooting during their 5 game run that ended in the NIT Title. Jefferson, like McGary, also had the benefit of playing with a great point guard and that is something to look at when looking for sleeper energy power forwards. While McGary and Jefferson were able to showcases their talents easier playing with great point guards, guys like Tony Mitchell, Arsalan Kazemi, Jackie Carmichael, Jarnell Stokes, and Trevor Mbakwe didn't have the same opportunity to show off their gifts. Having said that, I really like Cory Jefferson as a sleeper and I don't think late first round is a stretch for him. He's as explosive as it gets.

28. Oklahoma City Thunder - JR Jamaal Franklin, G/F, San Diego State

Franklin's upside and skills are overstated due to highlights films. He is not a guy who has potential to be a great NBA player and won't be a very efficient offensive player. But the guy competes, defends, and rebounds strong inside. He also has terrific instincts. If he focuses on being a defender, he is a crafty enough offensive player to be able to get to the line when needed and score with his transition opportunities. With the Thunder, he should understand what he needs to do to see the court very early in training camp.

29. San Antonio Spurs - JR Allen Crabbe, SG, California

Allen Crabbe makes his living coming off screens and making shots. He does a good job moving off the ball, working very hard to get open, and isn't just a guy who will use screens to get open 3-pt looks. Crabbe will curl around screens and use a nifty floater in the lane as well. In the Spurs offense, they can take advantage of his skills and utilize him the way he needs to be. Popovich will also be good for Crabbe's personal development, as his mental game is one of his biggest question marks. His NCAA tournament performance against Syracuse was a good example of that.

30. Cleveland Cavaliers - 1994 Mouhammadou Jaiteh, F/C, Boulogne

Raw big man who could have a Bismack Biyombo-esque climb after playing in the Nike Hoop Summit. According to his agent, he is "100%" in the draft and "90%" staying in. My guess is he will be looking for a first round guarantee.

31. Oklahoma City Thunder - SO BJ Young, G, Arkansas
32. Cleveland Cavaliers - SR Mike Muscala, F/C, Bucknell
33. Houston Rockets - SO Myck Kabongo, PG, Texas
34. Cleveland Cavaliers - JR Russ Smith, G, Louisville
35. Detroit Pistons - SO Le'Bryan Nash, SF, Oklahoma State
36. Philadelphia 76ers - JR CJ Wilcox, G/F, Washington
37. Sacramento Kings - SO Tony Mitchell, F, North Texas
38. Memphis Grizzlies - SR Brandon Paul, G, Illinois
39. Washington Wizards - JR CJ Leslie, PF, North Carolina State
40. Portland Trailblazers - SR Michael Snaer, SG, Florida State
41. Philadelphia 76ers - SO Shane Larkin, PG, Miami
42. Denver Nuggets - JR Tim Hardaway Jr, SG, Michigan
43. Dallas Mavericks - SR Jackie Carmichael, PF, Illinois State
44. Los Angeles Lakers - SR Nate Wolters, PG, South Dakota State
45. Milwaukee Bucks - SR Pierre Jackson, PG, Baylor
46. Portland Trailblazers - JR Lorenzo Brown, PG, North Carolina State
47. Utah Jazz - JR Ray McCallum, PG, Detroit
48. Atlanta Hawks - SR Ryan Kelly, PF, Duke
49. Chicago Bulls - JR Deshaun Thomas, F, Ohio State
50. Atlanta Hawks - SR Richard Howell, PF, North Carolina State
51. Orlando Magic - JR Doug McDermott, F, Creighton
52. Minnesota Timberwolves - FR Ricky Ledo, SG, Providence
53. Indiana Pacers - 1992 Leo Westermann, PG, Partizan Belgrade
54. Washington Wizards - SO Adonis Thomas, SF, Memphis
55. Detroit Pistons - 1991 Bojan Dubljevic, PF, Valencia
56. Los Angeles Lakers - 1991 Nemanja Nedovic, G, Lietuvos Rytas
57. Phoenix Suns - SR Trevor Mbakwe, PF, Minnesota
58. Minnesota Timberwolves - SR Arsalan Kazemi, PF, Oregon
59. San Antonio Spurs - SR Carrick Felix, SF, Arizona State
60. Miami Heat - JR Phil Pressey, PG, Missouri

No comments:

Post a Comment