Monday, November 5, 2012

Draft order based on my preseason predictions. You can check them all out here.

Everyone keeps saying how down this draft is. While there isn't much, if any, star power in this draft, a lot of these guys will still be rotation players. The draft must go on!

---------

1. Cleveland Cavaliers
PF/C Cody Zeller, So, Indiana
7'0, 240 lbs
Hometown: Washington, IN



Right now I think Cody Zeller, Shabazz Muhammed and James McAdoo are the favorites to go first overall. When there are a few players in play for the pick, size usually wins out. Zeller is a very talented offensive big man. He can score a variety of ways and could be a future 20 point per game scorer in the NBA.  He is more athletic then people give him credit for (white guys can be athletic too). He may not rebound or block shots like his position would demand, but offensively, he has a chance to be one of the best. As for the Cavaliers, they are still assembling talent and now have a big guy who is more then just a hustle player.

----------

2. Portland Trail Blazers
SG/SF Shabazz Muhammad, Fr, UCLA
6'6, 225 lbs
Hometown: Las Vegas, NV



You have heard the name Shabazz Muhammad for years, and he will finally arrive on the college basketball scene in 2012. Muhammad has an NBA ready body and game right now. He is 18 years old, but is built like a guy ten years older at 6'6, 225. He can handle the rock, play good defense, attack the rim, rebound. Simply put, he is an all around wing player who could very easily wind up being the first pick in the draft. The Blazers are starved for talent after whiffing on pretty much every first round draft pick the last five years, and really need another game changer like Muhammad.
----------

3. Charlotte Bobcats
SF/PF James McAdoo, So, North Carolina
6'9, 230 lbs
Hometown: Norfolk, VA



Top recruit James McAdoo was simply a luxury for the 2011-2012 Tar Heels. Playing behind three first round picks on the front court, McAdoo barely saw any time during the regular season. He had a good tournament run, though, and it would be a serious upset if he wasn't the nation's most improved player as a sophomore. He has drawn comparisons to James Worthy with his old school, silky smooth game. He is a bit of a tweener though, and if he is drafted by the Bobcats he might duplicate somewhat what Michael Kidd-Gilcrhist does. The Bobcats will be a very good defensive team with MKG, McAdoo and Bismack Biyombo.

----------

4. Orlando Magic
SF Tony Mitchell, So, North Texas
6'8, 235 lbs
Hometown: Dallas, TX



There may not be a more talented player in college basketball then Tony Mitchell. A former top recruit who was unable to play at Missouri, Mitchell found a home with North Texas and had a very good freshman season. He mostly relied on natural ability, and was simply too strong for the small school guys who tried to guard him. He got to the rim at will and racked up points and rebounds. He was wise to come back to school for his sophomore season and continue to develop his game, especially as a shooter as he will probably have to play small forward at the next level. The Magic just need talent anywhere they can find it at this point.
----------

5. Dallas Mavericks
PF/C Nerlens Noel, Fr, Kentucky
6'10, 228 lbs
Hometown: Everett, MA



Nerlens Noel has drawn comparisons to Anthony Davis, but they aren't all that similar. Both are tall, lanky forwards who excel at swatting shots from anywhere. In fact, Noel may be even better then Davis in that aspect. But Noel is still so skinny and weak, and his offensive game consists of mainly put backs. He has so far to go on the offensive end, but he offers game changing shot blocking ability. In a draft this weak, he is still a top five pick, and if his offense shows improvements, he could push to be the number one overall pick. On the Pistons, he will start out as a shot blocking backup who will have to be worked into the rotation slowly. He will not be ready to make an immediate impact like Davis.

----------

6. Houston Rockets
PF/C Rudy Gobert, France
7'1, 231 lbs
Hometown: Saint-Quentin, Aisne, France



Starting with Noel and continuing with Gobert and others, the common theme you will see with my 2013 NBA Mock Drafts is talented, but very skinny, big men. Gobert is mostly potential at this point. He can block your shot, run the floor and slam it down on a fast break, but will struggle if he gets the ball in the post. Like most young, skinny, long big men, he will need a lot of coaching and patience. But if he puts it all together, watch out. The Rockets have about 75 young players on the team, so they can afford to develop Gobert.

----------

7. Detroit Pistons
SF Alex Poythress, Fr, Kentucky
6'7, 239 lbs
Hometown: Clarksville, TN



If Nerlens Noel is John Calipari's new Anthony Davis, then Alex Poythress is Michael Kidd-Gilchrist. Poythress is very strong and tough and is a plus defender. Defense and rebounding is his calling card, as his offense is still a work in progress. He would be an excellent fit next to Anthony Davis and Ryan Anderson on the front court.

----------

8. New Orleans Hornets
SF Adonis Thomas, So, Memphis
6'7, 242 lbs
Hometown: Memphis, TN



The Mavericks are a very old team that just needs to add young talent to the roster, regardless of position. Thomas is still learning how to play the game of basketball, but has a strong, tough NBA frame and is a good slasher who could go all out for the 20 minutes or so he plays per game. Thomas needs to work on his jump shot and ball handling, as he plays more like a short 4 then a 3. If he can improve his jump shot, he could be a high lottery pick.

----------


9. Minnesota Timberwolves
PF/C Isaiah Austin, Fr, Baylor
7'1, 220 lbs
Hometown: Arlington, TX



The Baylor Bears recruited the tall, lanky Isaiah Austin, who is described as "a guard in a forwards body". Sound familiar? For the third straight year, the Bears get a top recruit,, and they hope he will turn out better then Perry Jones and Quincy Miller. Austin is 7'1 and might still be growing, but he is painfully thin. He has a good jump shot and can handle the ball, and of course, with that height and wingspan, he can block shots. Will he be Kevin Garnett or Jonathan Bender? The Wolves can bring him along slowly and hopefully develop him, because the talent is there.

----------

10. Atlanta Hawks
SG Archie Goodwin, Fr, Kentucky
6'5, 185 lbs
Hometown: Little Rock, AR



The Atlanta Hawks traded away long time number one scorer Joe Johnson, so they draft his replacement, who happens to be from the same home town as Johnson. Goodwin is yet another stud Kentucky freshman who will fill the role of Doron Lamb for the Wildcats. Goodwin is a heck of a ball handler and scorer who could start out as a combo guard in the NBA, but should work his way into a shooting guard at the next level, especially when he improves his jump shot.

----------


11. Oklahoma City Thunder
(from Toronto Raptors)
SF Kyle Anderson, Fr, UCLA
6'8, 233 lbs
Hometown: Fairview, NJ


With Steven Adams sitting here the Thunder could go after him with the pick they got for James Harden. But this franchise had absolutely putrid luck drafting big men, going back to their Sonics days. Robert Swift, Sear Sene, Johan Petro, Byron Mullens and Cole Aldrich were all first round busts. They have two more on their roster right now with Hasheem Thabeet and Daniel Orton. So Oklahoma City goes with the most unique player in this class. Anderson has been described as Kendall Marshall in the body of a power forward, which is probably more of a diss then a compliment. Anderson has great ball handling and decision making abilities, and could be a point furward for the Thunder. One more guy who could handle the ball when Russell Westbrook is not in the game.

----------

12. Washington Wizards
SG Ben McLemore, Fr, Kansas
6'5, 195 lbs
Hometown: St. Louis, MO



McLemore is a former top recruit who had to sit out last year due to eligibility issues. He should have plenty of minutes and a very key role for the Jayhawks this year. He has good size and strength for the position and is an active defender. He would make a very nice compliment to the undersized Bradley Beal at shooting guard for the Wizards.

----------


13. Utah Jazz
(from Golden State Warriors)
PG/SG BJ Young, So, Arkansas
6'3, 180 lbs
Hometown: St. Louis, MO


The Jazz are two deep at almost every position. What they don't have on the roster is a young point guard to develop. Young isn't exactly that. He is a combo guard who is more of a scorer then a distributor. I think he will be best in the NBA as a guy who can come off the bench and get you points. He is a heck of a scorer who had very good percentages as a freshman.

----------

14. Phoenix Suns
C Steven Adams, Fr, Pittsburgh
7'0, 250 lbs
Hometown: Rotura, New Zealand



Adams is very young and still very much a project, but he has lottery size and talent and should go there if he declares after his freshman season in Pittsburgh. The Suns have a few good big men but none as athletic and talented as Adams. He will be buried on the depcth chart for a couple years, but could develop into a solid starter.

---------

15. Milwaukee Bucks
SG Michael Carter-Williams, So, Syracuse
6'6, 185 lbs
Hometown: Hamilton, MA


Carter-Williams was a high recruit who struggled to find any playing time on a deep veteran Syracuse squad. Gone are Dion Waiters, Kris Joseph and Scoop Jardine, and Carter-Williams is set to shine as a sophomore. Carter-Williams is a very talented scorer who thrives with the ball in his hands. He is quick, lanky and good on the break. He will also learn how to play good defense playing for Jim Boeheim and the Orange. Syracuse has had guys come out of nowhere to become high first round picks (Wesley Johnson and Dion Waiters) come to mind, and I fully expect Carter-Williams to be one of the top guards selected when he declares. The Bucks have a good set of starting guards, but little depth to speak of Carter-Williams will give the back court some size and provide punch for the second unit.


----------

16. Chicago Bulls
PF/C Alex Len, So, Maryland
7'1, 225 lbs
Hometown: Antratsit, Ukraine



Len is yet another talented, but very skinny, big man project. He came over from the Ukraine and was thrown directly into brutal ACC play his freshman year after sitting out the first ten games of the 2011-2012 season. As you would expect he had a very up and down season and his offense consisted mostly of put backs. Like most skinny young players, he is a good shot blocker and rebounder, and that area of his game is ahead of his offense. He has definite lottery potential, especially as his body fills out and he packs on the muscle. For Chicago he could take over Omir Asik's old role, as the Bulls lack front court depth, and could work himself into a very solid starter one day.

----------

17. Cleveland Cavaliers
(from Sacramento Kings)
PG/SG CJ McCollum, Sr, Lehigh
6'3, 190 lbs
Hometown: Canton, OH


CJ McCollum has had a tremendous career for the Mid Major Mountain Hawks. Like most great players who play at that level, he has the ball in his hands pretty much all the time. He is more of a scorer then a distributor at this point, but has the talent to make his mark as a scorer off the bench at the next level. McCollum solidified his first round status by leading Lehigh to an upset over number two seed Duke in last year's NCAA Tournament. He completely took over that game. Cleveland has a nice set of starters at guard with Dion Waiters and Kyrie Irving, but no depth to speak of. McCollum would be a great combo guard off the bench.

----------

18. Utah Jazz
SF Dario Saric, Croatia
6'10, 223 lbs
Hometown: Sibenik, Croatia


The Jazz will most likely have two more first round picks this year to add to their very impressive collection of young talent. Saric might not declare for a year or two because he will be barely 19 by the time the draft rolls around, but he is eligible. He is a tall, skilled wing man who can rebound and handle the ball. His jump shot is not quite there yet but he has definite first round talent. The Jazz could draft him and let him develop overseas like the Bulls are doing with Nikola Mirotic.


----------

19. Brooklyn Nets
PG Ryan Harrow, So, Kentucky
6'2, 170 lbs
Hometown: Marietta, GA


Ryan Harrow hasn't played basketball in almost two years, which makes him an ancient 21 year old sophomore. John Calipari has had one of his point guards taken in the first round every year since 2010 and that trend should continue, if Harrow plays like many think he will. He is great at scoring with the ball in his hands and backing up Deron Williams in Brooklyn he will not have to worry about leading a team for 30 minutes per night.

 ----------

20. Los Angeles Clippers
PF/C Mason Plumlee, Sr, Duke
6'10, 235 lbs
Hometown: Warsaw, IN


If Miles Plumlee can be a first round pick in a deep draft, his more talented brother should be considered a first round lock in a weaker one. Plumlee was thought of as a future lottery pick, but his offense has never quite developed. Right now he reminds me of Chris Andersen. A guy who can give you 20 minutes of energy, rebounding and shot blocking. There is nothing wrong with that and every NBA team is looking for guys who can do just that. The Clippers especially lack rebounding and shot blocking off the bench.


----------

21. Boston Celtics
PG Myck Kabongo, So, Texas
6'1, 180 lbs
Hometown: Toronto, Ontario, Canada


Kabongo has some of the same question marks that current Boston Celtics point guard Rajon Rondo had in college. Most notably he is small, skinny and can't shoot. But he is probably the best distributor in this class and should be a first round pick whenever he declares because, simply, there are not that many good point guard prospects on the horizon. Theoretically he could learn from Rondo and become a good backup, but that might be difficult because Rondo is a terrible human being who hates everyone.


----------

22. New York Knicks
SF Otto Porter, So, Georgetown
6'8, 205
Hometown: Sikeston, MO


 Porter is a lanky, defensive minded young small forward who has drawn comparisons to Stacey Augmon. He is adept at using his long arms to deflect balls in passing lanes to set up the fast break. He is not much of a shooter yet, but his athleticism and ball handling has scouts intrigued. There is a chance he won't have the strength to match up against the bigger forwards or the speed to keep up with the quicker ones. The Knicks need all the young talent they can get on defense and should just go best player available.

----------

23. Phoenix Suns
(from Memphis Grizzlies)
SG Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, So, Georgia
6'5, 205
Hometown: Greenville, GA

Caldwell-Pope was a very highly regarded recruit who had an up and down freshman season for the Bulldogs. Caldwell-Pope is touted as a great scorer and shooter, and he is just that, though his percentages suffered as a freshman. But he has the length and talent to be a 20 point per game scorer in the pros. The Suns really need to get more athletic in the back court.

----------

24. Phoenix Suns
(from Los Angeles Lakers)
SF Andre Roberson, Jr, Colorado
6'7, 210 lbs
Hometown: San Antonio, TX


There are a lot of things that Andre Roberson is not. He is not a great ball handler, a good shooter, an amazing athlete. But what he does usually translates very well to the NBA level. He is a terror on the glass and a very good defender. Roberson averaged a double double with a block and two steals last year, showing his Andrei Kirilenko/Shawn Marion like overall game. Unfortunately he is even smaller then those two. At 6'7, 200 there is virtually no chance he can play power forward in the NBA, which will probably limit him to a bench role. But there is a place in the NBA for someone who hustles and rebounds like him, and he would fit perfectly on a Suns bench that has three rookies in this mock.

----------

25. Oklahoma City Thunder
C Kaleb Tarczewski, Fr, Arizona
7'0, 255 lbs
Hometown: Claremont, NH


Tarczewski is definitely a guy who would benefit from a few years of college, but everyone is eligible in this mock, so here he is. He has a terrific NBA body, and is more then just your average tall white stiff. He has surprising athleticism, can run the floor and is a good rebounder. He will be yet another project big man for a Thunder team that has failed to develop any of them, but has the talent to be a solid starter one day. If he stays two or three years at Arizona, he could be a lottery pick, not unlike a Meyers Leonard.

----------

26. Miami Heat
(from Philadelphia 76ers)
PF/C Patric Young, Jr, Florida
6'9, 249 lbs
Hometown: Jacksonville, FL

Patric Young certainly looks the part of an NBA power forward. He is a chiseled 6'9, 250 pounds and looks like a man amongst boys physically at the college level. But he is still extremely raw and might never be much of a scorer. Still, the NBA is always looking for shot blockers and rebounders and Young is getting better and better at those two parts of his game. For the Heat that is all they will ask him to do. He can't be any worse then Joel Anthony.

----------

27. Denver Nuggets
PG Lorenzo Brown, Jr, North Carolina St.
6'4, 185 lbs
Hometown: Roswell, GA



Lorenzo Brown is an interesting prospect who does not have the natural point guard skills or shooting ability to be a lottery pick, but late in the first round he could be a nice value pick for a very deep Denver squad. Brown has great size and has triple double ability, he is a good distributor and rebounder.

----------

28. Indiana Pacers
SF/PF CJ Leslie, Jr, North Carolina St.
6'8, 206 lbs
Hometown: Holly Springs, NC



Leslie is a very talented player who has had a good career so far for the Wolfpack. The problem is what position does he play? The track record for skinny, lanky power players like him in the NBA is not very good. He has the game of a power forward with the way he can slash to the rim and block shots, but he will probably have to play small forward in the NBA, and right now he does not have a good jump shot. The talent is there for him to be a solid starter, but he has to put in the work so he does not become another Hakim Warrick.

----------
29. Cleveland Cavaliers
(from Miami Heat)
SF Deshaun Thomas, Jr, Ohio St.
6'7, 215 lbs
Hometown: Fort Wayne, IN


The Cavs have had three first round picks in this mock, and the common theme for them was to find guys who can put the rock in the hoop. Thomas can certainly do that, and might average over 20 points per game during his jumior season. The reason Thomas is picked this low is he will probably give up that much on the other end. Defense is an absolutely laughable concept to him. Still, he could come off the bench for Cleveland and provide instant offense. He has the talent to be a big time scorer.

----------

30. San Antonio Spurs
PF/C Gorgui Dieng, Jr, Louisville
6'11, 245 lbs
Hometown: Dakar, Senegal


Dieng is 22 years old and still learning how to play the game, but his rebounding and shot blocking skills are NBA ready. He could be another Sear Sene or Bismack Biyombo. Both of those guys were younger then him when they were drafted, though. If Dieng can show any offensive ability at all, he should be a first round pick.


----------

All logos courtesy of www.sportslogos.net

0 comments: