2010 NBA Mock Draft - v 7.0

With the draft order set, everyone is updating their mock drafts today. Including me.

1. Washington Wizards - PG John Wall, Kentucky. The Wizards just had a possible franchise saving night. They get the best player in the draft. If you look around the NBA, the best young point guards (Williams, Paul, Rose, Westbrook, Rondo) were all drafted, not traded for. That is the best way to get your stud point guard, and the Wizards lucked into the new face of a rebuilding franchise. Congrats Wizards fans.

2. Philadelphia 76ers - SG Evan Turner, Ohio St.
At first, I thought DeMarcus Cousins would be the best fit here. The Sixers could eventually move on from the uninspired Samuel Dalembert/Elton Brand front court and go with Cousins and Speights. But once I stopped overthinking things I realized you can't go any other direction then Turner. He is the second best player in the draft. And after the whole Durant/Oden thing (and Darko/Melo, Olowokandi/everyone, Bowie/Jordan, etc.) teams should be realizing you can't automatically take the guy just cause he's 7 foot.

3. New Jersey Nets - PF Derrick Favors, Georgia Tech. The Nets are the big losers here, losing 70 games then losing out on Wall and Turner. But Favors could be a nice consolation prize. Favors is still somewhat raw, but could be one of those power forward slam dunk champions in the future. And not a Tyrus Thomas type, more of an Amare Stoudemire type. He'll be a better fit next to Brook Lopez then Cousins would be.

4. Minnesota Timberwolves - C DeMarcus Cousins, Kentucky. David Kahn has shown in a big way that he is not afraid to take what he thinks is the best player available, regardless of positional need. I think this would be the best pick, even though pretty much everyone will have Wesley Johnson pegged here. Cousins is a legit 7 foot back to the basket center that will be able to better defend opposing centers. The Wolves can't have either Love or Jefferson attempt to defend any seven footers for another year, and they are fooling themselves if they think Darko is the answer.

5. Sacramento Kings - SF Wesley Johnson, Syracuse.
The Kings would like COusins to fall down here, because Spencer Hawes has been disappointing. But they settle for Johnson. He's a good small forward who can run the floor, shoot, rebound and play defense. He doesn't do anything well but can be a nice second option to Tyreke Evans. He is not a guy who needs the ball in his hands all the time to be successful.

6. Golden St. Warriors - SF/PF Al-Farouq Aminu, Wake Forest. And now we come to the Warriors. What will they do? Well, for one, Don Nelson will be back next year, meaning you can throw positional needs out of the window. Which would be good for Aminu, who can play power forward for them in that offense. Which might not be bad for him, since he is a tweener anyways and athletic enough to thrive in this chaotic offense.

7. Detroit Pistons - PF/C Greg Monroe, Georgetown.
The Pistons were a mess in 2009-2010. What they lack more then anything is some toughness down low. Monroe's ceiling is not that high, but you know you are getting a guy who will rebound, block shots and is a great passer out of the post, playing in the Princeton offense. He'll start from day one.

8. Los Angeles Clippers - SF Gordon Hayward, Butler. Will Hayward be the next Adam Morrison? Tall, white shooter from a mid major who made a name for himself in the NCAA Tournament? Clippers fans hope not. They have a spot open at small forward and could use some more offense. Defense, as well, which is not Hayward's strong suit. Still, I can't see him slipping past the Pacers.

9. Utah Jazz (from New York Knicks) - C Cole Aldrich, Kansas. The Jazz are going to lose Carlos Boozer and Mehmet Okur. I don't think Aldrich will be all that great, maybe top out as a Brendan Haywood type. 12 points and 8 boards a night. But he could be a solid starting center on a playoff team, and if the Jazz can get a starting center out of this draft thanks to a free pick, they should be happy.

10. Indiana Pacers - PG/SG Avery Bradley, Texas. Reach? Maybe. I just think the Pacers need to try to hit a home run, because their team is an absolute mess right now. They can't just go the safe route and take another project big man. I think Bradley will shoot up the boards and be a better pro then a college player. He can play good defense and is a talented combo guard. Maybe Russell Westbrook? If he can approach that Pacers fans might have something to be excited about other then Danny Granger.

11. New Orleans Hornets - PF Ed Davis, North Carolina. The Hornets had an amazing draft last year, giving their back court some great depth. Now they have to do that with their front court. Davis could be a nice pick here, offering some nice upside and athleticism when the plodding Emeka Okafor is on the bench.

12. Memphis Grizzlies - PF Ekpe Udoh, Baylor. The Grizzlies are pretty much set on the starting five, and have a ton of first round picks as backups. They could still use a better bench though. Udoh can play offense and defense, and could start once Zach Randolph moves on.

13. Toronto Raptors - PF/C Hassan Whiteside, Marshall. Even though Whiteside was only a freshman at Marshall, he is 21 years old. That's pretty old for this draft. Still, he's a project. But he has a freakish body and could be a Marcus Camby type. If he can play that kind of defense he should eventually move to center and allow Bargnani to play his more natural power forward position.

14. Houston Rockets - C Daniel Orton, Kentucky. The Rockets are actually pretty deep right now, so they can take a chance on Orton. If he was on any other team except Kentucky he might not be such an unknown. But he is a big, strong center and was a high recruit. The Rockets could use a real center to back up, and more then occasionally start, for Yao Ming.

15. Milwaukee Bucks (from Chicago Bulls) - SG James Anderson, Oklahoma St. John Salmons was a godsend for the Bucks after Michael Redd went down once again, becoming that go to scorer that Milwaukee really needed. But they need to find a long term replacement for Redd, who just can't stay healthy anymore. Anderson is a classic scoring two guard. He might not do much else, but he will score.

16. Minnesota Timberwolves (from Charlotte Bobcats) - SG/SF Paul George, Fresno St. Among many other needs, the Wolves need an athletic wing player. Ronnie Brewer had a pretty good year, but he might not be more then a backup calibur player. Now, they won't find anyone better then him here, but George has some freakish ability and could be shooting up the draft boards.

17. Chicago Bulls (from Milwaukee Bucks) - PF Donatas Motiejunas, Lithuania. I think the Bulls are going to want to save every penny they can for LeBron James and another free agent or two. So they draft a guy they can stash over in Italy for one more year. Motiejunas was once considered a top five pick, so he has some talent. It's not like the Bulls are throwing away this pick.

18. Miami Heat - PF/C Larry Sanders, VCU. The Heat need to go best available big man here. Jermaine O'Neal, Udonis Haslem are both free agents, meaning they are going to be extremely thin up front next year.

19. Boston Celtics - SG Xavier Henry, Kansas. I would personally take Henry with a top ten pick. I think he is going to be a pretty good pro. But since he doesn't do anything to wow you, he may fall a bit. Who does that remind you of? A shooting guard drafted in 1998 out of the University of Kansas who fell all the way to the 10th pick, and wound up delivering this franchise a title.

20. San Antonio Spurs - SF Luke Babbitt, Nevada.
Reports have Babbitt going as high as 12th to the Grizzlies. I can't see it quite yet. I know the NBA loves their tall white shooters though. Babbitt has a Euro style game, and no one has had better luck with those kinds of players then the Spurs.

21. Oklahoma City Thunder - SF Quincy Pondexter, Washington. I like Pondexter and think he should be taken in the first round. He is a good on the ball defender and can do enough to help a team on offense. Would be a fine backup for Kevin Durant.

22. Portland Trail Blazers - PF Patrick Patterson, Kentucky. Patterson is falling due to his lack of size and talent. You see it happen all the time, but he'll still come right in and help a playoff team right away.

23. Minnesota Timberwolves (from Utah Jazz) - PF Jarvis Varnado, Mississippi St.
The Timberwolves will probably trade the player taken with this pick like they did with Ty Lawson last year. Only have so many spots for rookies. I think Varnado will be taken in the first round, though. He may only do one thing well, but he did it better then any shot blocker to play in the NCAA.

24. Atlanta Hawks - SF Damion James, Texas. Damion James is a solid, but not spectacular player who should be able to get up and down the floor with the athletic Hawks.

25. Memphis Grizzlies (from Denver Nuggets) - PG Eric Bledsoe, Kentucky. The Grizzlies shouldn't force themselves to go into another season with veteran rejects as backup point guards. Bledsoe could have been a lottery pick if he stayed in college one more year.

26. Oklahoma City Thunder (from Phoenix Suns) - C Solomon Alabi, Florida St.
The Thunder got much more then they expected from Serge Ibaka last year, but still could use some more size. BJ Mullens is a long long away from contributing. They take another project, but one who could provide a few minutes.

27. New Jersey Nets (from Dallas Mavericks) - PG Armon Johnson, Nevada.
Looks like Devin Harris is going to stay in New Jersey. Which may not be a bad thing, since he came on after a terrible first half of the year. They could use a young backup behind him.

28. Memphis Grizzlies (from Los Angeles Lakers) - PF Kevin Seraphin, France. The Grizzlies had three draft picks on the roster last year, and with three more first round picks this year, there just isn't enough room for all these guys. So expect a trade here or a foreign guy to be taken.

29. Orlando Magic - PG/SG Dominique Jones, South Florida. The Magic are deep but still could have a spot for a first round rookie. There are a lot of those tweener guards available, and they opt to go with the hometown guy.

30. Washington Wizards (from Cleveland Cavaliers) - SF Stanley Robinson, Connecticut. Not a guy who can do anything great, but should be, at worst, a backup player.

Jonathan Carrano

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