The 2013 NBA lottery has just concluded itself and to no surprise the Cleveland Cavaliers are winners for the top pick in the upcoming draft. Dan Gilbert is blessed; he is a father to a son that appears to have luck working on his side. Since his son has been representing the Cavaliers at the lottery, the team acquired the top pick in the NBA draft twice in the past three seasons. However, is it ideal to obtain the draft’s top pick in a year in which general managers and scouts claim there is no franchise-changer? Would it be more financially beneficial to draft later in the lottery if most of the upcoming prospects received fairly equivalent grades? I guess we won’t know until next season, until then it's safe to say having the top pick is more valuable. So who is the top pick going to be? Let’s find out.
1.Cleveland Cavaliers- Nerlens Noel- C 7’0 206 lbs Kentucky: With the top pick in the draft, the Cavaliers would be making a terrible mistake not to take the consensus number one overall. Despite not being ready until Christmas, Noel is the best player in the draft and fills a need for them as an interior rim protector. Tyler Zeller has a limited ceiling and proved this past season he can’t be the big man in the middle. With some added weight and time in the weight room, Noel can be Cleveland’s version of Tyson Chandler.
2.Orlando Magic- Trey Burke- PG 6’1 187 lbs Michigan: Jameer Nelson is getting old and this team desperately needs a team leader and a floor general. Trey Burke is that guy, he lead a young Michigan team with talented wings to the National Championship game. Ah, sounds like a young Orlando team to me. Trey Burke’s biggest problems are; he is only “good” athletically and does not possess the typical combo guard size, then again he is a point guard. Height and weight wise, Burke stands with Chris Paul and Mike Conley, and they faired out just fine. Burke’s shooting ability and playmaking ability will help improve the young Mo Harkless, Tobais Harris and, Nicola Vucevic.
3.Washington Wizards- Otto Porter- SF 6’9 198 lbs Georgetown: In Washington two things are for sure: John Wall and Bradley Beal. The back court is set and if you kept up with the NBA in the later portions of the season you would also agree. John Wall played terrific, seems like he got the hang of playing with Beal. What’s missing are a few wings and some long term big men. This early in the draft, no big man is worth taking, so let’s just assume that Otto Porter makes the most sense at SF. Why? He is the safest pick in the draft, and he fills a glaring need for the Wizards. He offers intangibles no other player in the draft offers, though he’s not great at anything, he is good at almost everything. Porter possesses a very high basketball I.Q. and I.Q. sticks with you in the long run. Porter should make an immediate impact to an already talented Wizards team.
4.Charlotte Bobcats- Ben Mclemore- SG 6’5 195 lbs Kansas: Plain and simple, the Bobcats need scoring. No one in the starting lineup or on the roster can consistently score the basketball. Some scouts have Oladipo going here, but remember who the number two pick in the 2012 draft was? Michael Kidd- Gilchrist, he reminds me a lot of oladipo, high motor, great defensively, but can’t consistently score. Mclemore is a terrific scorer with tremendous athletic ability, he can catch the ball and take you off the dribble with an explosive first step or he can shoot from anywhere on the court. His only problem is creating his own shot; if he isn’t catching the ball on the move then he forces a bad shot. Kemba and Mclemore can make a very exciting backcourt for years and finally the Bobcats can put some points on the board.
5.Phoenix Suns- Victor Oladipo- SG 6’4 213 lbs Indiana: The Suns allowed a whopping 104.9 points per game which ranks 26th overall last season. That is terrible, though the Suns haven’t been known for their defense but I thought the Dantoni- Nash era was over. The team is obviously flipping a new chapter and why not go defense? Victor Oladipo can help reduce the points scored against. Oladipo can be one of the league’s premier defensive players in the future, potentially becoming a lock down defender who can guard your best player. In today’s star driven NBA, that is a luxury any coach would love to have. He also has the ability to get out in transition and help push the tempo a little with Goran Dragic due to his athletic ability. Oladipo has a very high motor; he’s a gym rat and if you don’t believe me, check out his stats from his sophomore to his junior season. What stands out is his improvement from behind the three point line. If he was able to improve from 20 % to 44 % in one season, then who knows how much potential he has left to improve.
6.New Orleans Hornets- Alex Len- C 7’1 255 lbs Maryland: Last year the Hornets selected Anthony Davis with the first pick overall. This past season only proved why he was number one overall. He showed flashes of being a great basketball player in the future, he's a lock down defender and a good weak side defender in the paint. The franchise is clearly building around Davis, so why not compliment him with a center with an array of post moves. Len is a project and might not wow anyone in his rookie season, but this season he proved he is NBA caliber. He can come in as a rookie and pushing for the starting center role, he has the size and height for it, it’s all about his development. Len and Davis can be one of the league’s top front -court in the future.
7.Sacramento Kings- Anthony Bennett- PF/SF 6’8 240 lbs UNLV: Anthony Bennett has one major question he needs to answer if he wants to improve his draft stock, what is his true position? He is the pure definition of a tweener. Tweener’s usually are hard to defend but aren’t very good defensively. If teams are drafting this player to be a small forward then it’s a bad idea, a small forward must be athletic enough to defend explosive opposing wings. Sacramento is fortunate enough to have a glaring need at the 3 and 4 position and they have the luxury playing Bennett where he is better suited. Bennett is arguably the most talented player in the draft, being able to shoot, drive and post up but a torn rotator cuff kept him out of the combine which hurt his stock. I believe Gm’s are scared to take the risk on him but at seven, there is no risk at all. Bennett can provide scoring help to a team that needs it, Bennett can complement cousins well by stretching the court. This would be a good value pick.
8.Detroit Pistons- Michael Carter-Williams- PG 6’5 185 lbs Syracuse: Brandon Knight is not a point guard. The team traded for Calderon because they didn’t see point guard instincts in Brandon Knight. Knight is better suited for the shooting guard position and it looks like Will Bynum and Jose Calderon aren’t going to resign, leaving the team with no point guard. MCW is very athletic, has a high I.Q. and is a pure passing point guard. Opposing guards are very athletic in the modern NBA and guards will have a hard time shooting over the lengthy (6’7 wingspan) point guard and will have a hard time blowing past him because he displayed great foot work and an athletic step to keep up defensively. The offense looked very stagnant at points and MCW can get the offense going by setting up Drummond with easy jams, setting up Monroe in the post or out around the free throw line for an easy 15 foot shot.
9.Minnesota Timberwolves- Shabazz Muhammad- SG 6’5 222 lbs UCLA: Muhammad raises question marks about his mentality and approach to the game. Muhammad rarely gets his teammates involved (.8 apg) and is a poor rebounder. Fortunately for Muhammad, the Wolves have a great rebounding team and a great passing point guard. Muhammad should transition nicely into the NBA; he can focus on scoring because that’s why the T-wolves would be drafting him. Rubio, a franchise point guard needs a complementary shooting guard that can score from anywhere on the court. He proved at UCLA he can shoot the ball and drive left. Good pick.
10.Portland Trailblazers- Cody Zeller- C 7’0 240 lbs Indiana: Word is the Trailblazers are fielding offers for Lamarcus Aldridge, not sure why but so be it. They would desperately need a replacement and Zeller possesses similar skill sets. He has post moves and can knock down that 15 foot jump shot. Though his wingspan isn’t very long but it’s ratio with his height. His weight and strength is also a problem but Zeller is smart enough to hit the weight room. Zeller and Leonard down-low with an all-star point guard in Lilard can be a very fun team to watch in the future if the Blazers decide to move Aldridge.
11.Philadelphia 76ers- Kelly Olynyk- C 7’0 235 lbs Gonzaga: The 76ers are improving at the center position by drafting Olynyk. Andrew Bynum hasn’t played a minute all season and I don’t think he will resign.The team is set at the point guard position with Jrue Holiday and they have talented wings. They must go big and the best big man left on the board is Olynyk. Olynyk can provide a post game for a team that is lacking interior scoring and can offer a team some size that is on the shorter end other than Hawes at the big man position.
12.Oklahoma City Thunder- Rudy Gobert- C 7’2 238 lbs International: The Thunder have one problem and that’s it pulling Perkins out the game when they want to push the tempo. When they do that, other teams take advantage and go big, resulting in poor interior defense. When perkins is in the game, the Thunder have a hard time getting out in transition. Gobert is a 7’2 shot blocking center, though he can’t jump, scouts don’t care because he does have a 7’8 wing span. Gobert is athletic enough to offer the Thunder the ability to push the tempo while maintaining size and a defensive presence on the court. May I remind you that they drafted an international prospect by the name of Ibaka in the past? Makes sense here.
13.Dallas Mavericks- CJ McCollum- PG 6’3 197 lbs Lehigh: McCollum no doubt is a point guard, he’s just a scoring point guard. He reminds me a lot of Damian Lilard. McCollum can shoot from anywhere on the court and presents flashes into potentially being a solid passer. Darren Collison is not the franchise point guard the Mavericks are looking for, he’s very small and didn’t average many minutes per game last year for a reason. McCollum can be the team’s franchise point guard and can provide instant offense to a team that is losing O.J. Mayo in the free agency.
14.Utah Jazz- Dennis Schroder- PG 6’2 165 lbs International: Schroeder has been getting a lot of buzz lately, and it was rumored that a team promised him they’d select him. I believe that team is Utah because they have a very obvious need at point guard. They are obviously set at bigs and have some nice wing players, Mo Williams can’t lead this team for long because he is getting old and his team is young. Schroeder is good athlete, with a killer explosive first step to beat defenders off the dribble, because he can do that he also has the ability to create for others with his exceptional passing skills. He great ball handling and amazing foot work. He also has the skill to shoot off the dribble. His only problem is his weight, but he has the frame to bulk up. Sounds too good to be true, then again he’s an international prospect but at 14 this should be a nice pickup for the Jazz.
airmojo posted on 5/19/2013 6:44:42 PM PASPN.net member class: Hall of Famer - Isiah Thomas Contributing Member
Pre-lottery Mock draft 1.0-detailed, feedback appreciated Ok guys, I know its really early to put up a mock draft but this what I see happening if the draft was to take place right now and the teams are fixed in their current slots.
Orlando-Nerlens Noel-Nikola Vucevic and Noel would make a beautiful combination downlow since both compliment each other well. If Vucevic cant play the 4 then he offers tremendous trading value. The Magic desperately need someone to defend the paint. Burke would make sense here, but his combine was terrific to give him the nod and I think the magic can wait one more year with Nelson.
Bobcats-Ben Mclemore- Plain and simple, the bobcats need to pair Kemba Walker with a complimentary sg to make up their backcourt for the future. No other pick here makes sense for them.
Cavaliers-Otto Porter- The cavaliers have a glaring need at the 3 and Porter makes perfect sense. The roster is very young, adding a more experienced player (in retrospect to bennett) makes more sense. It was close between Benett and Porter but remember the Cavaliers invested the 4th pick in thompson a few years ago and if Benett can't play the 3, there will be a problem with his role on the team, thats why they go with the safest pick in the draft with Porter.
Phoenix- Victor Oladipo-The Suns weren't too nice on the defensive end last year and Oladipo can provide instant defense and athletcism to this up-tempo team.
New Orleans- Cody Zeller- Zeller is on the thin end of a big man. Yet pairing his offensive abilities with Davis's skill set would be a beautiful move. The Hornets are building around Davis and bringing in a big man to compliment him must be their first move.
Sacremento- Michael Carter Williams- Yes MCW will be the first pg off the board. He did a lot to improve his draft stock and the Kings will not win many basketball games starting a midget (no offense isiah). They desperately need someone to control the tempo and run the show, mcw can get the kings offense rolling because they certainly have talent and need a pg that can feed the talented big man cousins the ball.
Pistons- Shabazz Muhammad- The pistons desperately need a scoring threat on the lineup. There is not one player on this lineup that can consistently score the ball, nor shoot the ball. Shabazz is an athletic wing that displays potential to affect the game defensively as well. This pick makes the perfect sense and Joe Dumars would love to draft another big name in the 13 draft. Another name I have here is Trey Burke, my thought process at this point is they want to give Knight another shot to run the show if Calderon doesn't resign. Drafting Trey Burke would mean two things: They gave up on Knight and they don't want calderon back and I don't believe Joe D is willing to make such a risky move at this point of his career.
Washington-Anthony Benett- Amazing value for the wizards at 8. Bennett is potentially the most talented player in the draft but a torn rotator cuff and absence in the combine will scare gms. The wizards have nothing to lose drafting this player at 8, they have obvious needs lineup at the 3-4-5 positions.
Minnesota- Cj Mcollum- Yes this seems to not make any sense because of Alexy shved and Rubio. The t-wolves have obvious scoring needs in the backcourt. Mcollum can be that scoring spark off the bench or can potentially fill a role playing the 2 in the starting lineup. They would love to draft Zeller here because word is Love is not interested in returning here. I believe if New Orleans passes him, the Zeller will not go passed Minnesota.
Portland Trailblazers- Kentavious Caldwell Pope- A slight reach but the obvious remains, Lilard needs backcourt help. Pope and Lilard offer a dynamic future backcourt, both are terrific scorers. Pope can shoot lights out.
Philidelphia- Alex Len- A slips just a little, I have Zeller going over him because Len was not able to participate in any combine workouts because of his injury. He is a slight risk but the value is pretty good at 11 if you ask me. Andrew Bynum is not resigning and the sixers need their center. plain and simple.
Thunder- Rudy Gobert- Yes the frenchman is a lottery pick. This team is far too athletic and the 7'2 frenchman fits the mold of this team perfectly. Kendrick Perkins seems to be on the decline and Gobert can offer some interior defense because it seems like Ibaka has been doing it alone this past year. Gobert is also athletic enough to stay on the court when the thunder want to push the tempo. He fits perfectly here.
Dallas- Trey Burke- I feel really stupid having Burke fall to 13. Someone might take him in the top 3! I don't see many teams that need a pg besides Sacremento and Detroit in the lottery. Since I have mcw going off the board first and Joe D not taking the risk then I have Dallas as his team. Dallas will probably have to trade up but Collison is not the franchise 30+ pg that Burke can potentially be. I see a perfect fit here but 13 seems way too low for a player at Bruke's caliber. This is potentially the best value pick in the draft.
Utah- Dennis Schroder- Not sure what the word is on Schroder being promised. Not sure if a team outside the lottery or a team inside the lottery promised him a selection or not but if it is a team that promised him inside the lottery then Utah would be the team. They have a glaring need at the point guard position, they have tons of talent inside and have a few athletic wings, all thats left is a point guard position to fill because mo-williams can't lead this team for long.
airmojo posted on 5/19/2013 6:51:13 PM PASPN.net member class: Hall of Famer - Isiah Thomas Contributing Member
Burke's combine wasn't terrific*** error in the orlando magic selection description
sorry for the grammar errors.
fyi no trades were taken into account this is just what i believe teams will go after if they were in their spots
BigDaddyJungle posted on 5/19/2013 9:00:35 PM PASPN.net member class: Hall of Famer - Isiah Thomas
re: Pre-lottery Mock draft 1.0-detailed, feedback appreciated Shabazz is 6'4', too small. Can't see Detroit picking him under any situation.
We need Shooters and a pg. We need a player that can shoot the ball and with range.
That is who to look at or a defender at 3 which would only be otto.
Simon posted on 5/20/2013 12:15:20 AM PASPN.net member class: Hall of Famer - Isiah Thomas Contributing Member
re: re: Pre-lottery Mock draft 1.0-detailed, feedback appreciated I think if Anthony Bennett is available we'd take him.
I was high on shabazz until i realised he was actually 6'4". Same with Oladipo. It could be an idea to trade this draft pick for an pick next year.airmojo posted on 5/20/2013 4:14:53 AM PASPN.net member class: Hall of Famer - Isiah Thomas Contributing Member
re: re: re: Pre-lottery Mock draft 1.0-detailed, feedback appreciated He's short for a sf but why not draft him to play sg? The guy can shoot and score and can defend. If the pistons don't trade this pick and are stuck at 7 I have a hard time seeing them draft anyone else besides maybe Burke or if they like one of them centers KJRNDBALL2 posted on 5/20/2013 11:16:31 AM PASPN.net member class: NBA All Star - Bill Laimbeer
re: Pre-lottery Mock draft 1.0-detailed, feedback appreciated NOT EVEN CLOSE ! to being a fan of shabazz, so I definitely wouldn't take him over tburke, cj mc, and especially Bennett.. who though im not thrilled at his "tweener" size?? is gona be a stud.. watch his film..all ya gotta do.. Bennett next to moose and Drummond is absolutely freakin awesome.;.airmojo posted on 5/20/2013 11:58:53 AM PASPN.net member class: Hall of Famer - Isiah Thomas Contributing Member
re: re: Pre-lottery Mock draft 1.0-detailed, feedback appreciated i dont think the pistons are going to take a risk and draft a tweener. if he can display potential to defend the 3's then he should be our guy but word is hes not good defensively and if your sf cant play defense then there is a big problem. at this point my mock is very inaccurate i know that but if there are two players that fall its burke and benett because this as i said is before the lottery and RIGHT after the combine. i know burke might go top 5 maybe even top 3 but i had to make a bold prediction and i have mcw going before him cuz of his combine showing. now that i think about it though maybe burke does get the nod over muhammmad because i dont think theyre too confident in knight. but the 6'4 height shouldnt be a major red flag for muhammad, thats fine, we can play him the 2, i mean he can score and defend. i wouldnt mind solidifying our future back-court in this draft.if we do take burke, knight will have to play the sixth man role in my opinion and this will put us a year back. if they dont take burke ill be upset but ill also like it because itll tell me knight is ready to be our pg.
ill have more mocks after the lottery and after more reports come out for these players Simon posted on 5/21/2013 5:07:29 AM PASPN.net member class: Hall of Famer - Isiah Thomas Contributing Member
re: re: re: Pre-lottery Mock draft 1.0-detailed, feedback appreciated the pistons will draft the best available even if he's a tweener KJRNDBALL2 posted on 5/21/2013 6:46:16 AM PASPN.net member class: NBA All Star - Bill Laimbeer
re: re: re: Pre-lottery Mock draft 1.0-detailed, feedback appreciated True 3's gotta D up and he has flags.. so does every single one of the the players before and most after, in one respect or an other.. this is supposed to be the "best" draft in years I only hope Joe can figure it out.. almost wouldn't mind a trade down to mid teens or so pick up a vet and take a flyer on:
pg- shane larkin mega fast/leaper for only 5'11 (still tburke size)
pg- dennis Schroeder seems like a prototype pg
sg-kentaviuos pope- 6'6 defensive wiz, can definitely shoot
sg-toney snell- 6'7 gr8 shooter
sf- greek freak Antetokoumpo (sp?) jus cuz hes 6'10 can shoot and handles the ball like a pg.. second round would be a fun pick...
got that feeling that 3 yrs from now the big guns from this draft will have come post lotto or at least late lotto.. pick carefully young grass hoppa!!yugsterus posted on 5/25/2013 2:07:43 PM PASPN.net member class: Hall of Famer - Isiah Thomas Contributing Member
re: Pre-lottery Mock draft 1.0-detailed, feedback appreciated Guys Shabazz Muhammad is a brick shit house with long arms and good athleticism.
He is a competitor.
He was top post scoring wing in nation and 2nd best wing at O-rebounding in nation. He was a solid on ball defender and competes.
People put way too much into a guys height, height is only one of many factors in how big a guy really plays basketball. S. Muhammad will play bigger than K. Singler does at SF.
The red flags we dont know. I'd like to see how interviews, if he's mature at all. Sorry, because a kid looked down once when his teammate hit a big shot is not worthy of instant character assassination.
Finally, Muhammad is a SF and doesnt pound the rock. In fact he's the best in this draft at moving without the ball. He does not turn it over. You cant ball hog if you play SF unless you're a point forward type, which he's clearly not. He's a finisher of the play and I think thats perfect fit for kick outs and Monroe hitting him as a cutter.
I will be really dissapointed if we dont get a shooter. No matter how good all-around Oladipo or Porter might be, if they cant shoot the 3 and drive they wont be plus players for our offense, and a bad fit considering we dont have any of that. I guarantee you S. Muhammad is a sure thing in those areas and a good fit at SF. I love McCollum but it may not work with Knight, who I still think can be a good PG if he gets patience and learns how to change pace.