Sunday, May 22, 2011
Rock Out with Your Mock Out
In heavy anticipation of the upcoming NBA draft, here is my insight on where I think these college studs are going to land in the lottery.
1. Cleveland Cavaliers----- Derrick Williams, SF University of Arizona
The Cavs will look to go for an NBA ready player who has "star" potential instead of taking a solid point guard in Kyrie Irving. Instead of taking Irving and picking up a European question mark with their 4th pick, I think they snag Williams and hope to land Kemba Walker or Brandon Knight at 4. Two solid pieces for a rebuilding franchise.
2. Minnesota Timberwolves----- Enes Kanter, PF/C University of Kentucky
The best big man in the draft will help bolster the front court of the Wolves alongside Kevin Love. Hoping that Ricky Rubio pans out, I think Minnesota goes with the big guy out of Turkey. Also, GM David Kahn may look to deal this pick in hopes of adding some solid veterans to their young squad.
3. Utah Jazz----- Kyrie Irving, PG Duke University
After dealing all-star point guard Deron Williams, the Jazz will look to find a solid point guard to start rebuilding their franchise. The Jazz like Devin Harris, but don't see him fitting in to the equation for future success. Irving is a high quality guy who will be a good player but not a huge star, he's not as athletic as people think. The Jazz also could look to deal this pick for a much needed pure Center.
4. Cleveland Cavaliers----- Kemba Walker, PG University of Connecticut
As I said earlier, the Cavs are going to try to snag a couple of proven winners with their two top five picks. I like the explosive combo of Walker and Williams, has a good ring to it, for the Cavaliers. Walker willed his team to victory in both the conference and national championships. Size and defense are the main concerns for Walker, but Cleveland needs a winner, Kemba is their guy.
5. Toronto Raptors----- Jan Vesely, SF KK Paritzan Belgrade (Serbia)
In the classic Euro-Raptors fashion, the franchise in the Great White North snag Vesely a long freak of an athlete to play 3. They'll have to move Bargnani to forward or center but I think Vesely is a good fit for Toronto. If he can prove that he is a decent shooter, I can see this guy being a good player in the NBA.
6. Washington Wizards----- Kawhi Leonard, SF San Diego State University
The Wizards take an athlete at this pick. The Wizards are trying to reinvent themselves and I think the idea of Leonard alongside John Wall is appealing. Kawhi is a do-it-all type of guy and will bring defense and rebounding to the table, something the Wizards really need. They don't need a center because they already have JaVale McGee, nor do they need a point guard, so I see them taking Kawhi.
7. Sacramento Kings----- Brandon Knight, PG University of Kentucky
This is the steal of the draft. The Kings have finally realized that Tyreke Evans is not a point guard. They'll move 'Reke to SG and draft Knight out of Kentucky. Knight is a guy with no character issues, which will help to counteract last year's pick DeMarcus Cousins. Knight, Evans, and Cousins are not a shabby trio to start rebuilding a franchise on.
8. Detroit Pistons----- Jonas Valanciunas, C Lietuvos Rytas (Lithuania)
The biggest question mark of this draft lands a job with the Pistons. This guy has been somewhat of an enigma for scouts. He is a big 19 year old kid with good skills that need heavy polishing. The biggest concern with Jonas is "how high is his ceiling?" I think the Pistons figure that they have nothing to lose in a relatively weak draft, and gamble on Valanciunas.
9. Charlotte Bobcats----- Donatas Motiejunas, PF/C Benetton Treviso (Italy)
The Bobcats take a shooter at #9 with Motiejunas. Motiejunas is of the Valanciunas ilk in that people are unsure of his ceiling. I think they know that he's going to be a project but are willing to invest in a potential scorer. Michael Jordan is known to take risks and I think gambles (poor choice of words?) and takes Motiejunas.
10. Milwaukee Bucks---- Alec Burks, SG University of Colorado-Boulder
The best slasher in this draft goes to the Bucks who are in desperate need of a scorer. Michael Redd has left a gap at SG for this franchise and I think Burks fills that need. Burks and Brandon Jennings make for an interesting back court, but I think could compliment each other well.
11. Golden State Warriors----- Bismack Biyombo, C Democratic Republic of Congo
The Warriors want someone who is going to play defense and rebound. Those are pretty much the only two aspects to Biyombo's raw game. The guy has an unprecedented wingspan and could help David Lee with defensive rebounding. Now that "Nelly-Ball" is gone in the bay, defense is the number one priority. Plus, if they select Biyombo, they will win the award for best names in consecutive drafts with Ekpe Udoh and Bismack Biyombo.
12. Utah Jazz----- Klay Thompson, Washington State University
The Jazz need a 2 guard now that the "Raja Bell Project" has proven ineffective. Theoretically, Bell in his prime is a good fit for the Jazz, but has lost his jump shot and can't defend like he used to. Klay Thompson can straight stroke the pumpkin, and could provide scoring for Utah. He can spread the floor, opening up the lane for Jefferson and Millsap to go to work. I think he fits in well for this squad.
13. Phoenix Suns----- Jimmer Fredette, Brigham Young University
Taking Jimmer at 13? Fredette about it. The Suns are hoping Jimmer will thrive under the tutelage of Steve Nash and develop a solid passing game to compliment his sweet jumper. Jimmer is a dog on defense, but defense is something that players can really develop in the NBA. Jimmer is more athletic than people think and has been proving that at the NBA Draft Combine. He is a low rick at 13 with what is available, and I think Suns fans will have to "learn how to Jimmer."
14. Houston Rockets----- Marcus Morris, Kansas University
With the last lottery pick, the Rockets bolster their front court with the better Morris twin. Morris is a decent pick at 14 and the Rockets could use some rebounding, Morris can help Scola on the defensive end as well.
Posted by Danny Franks at 4:16 PM