First off, what a crazy draft! It’s too bad that the drafts weren’t always this unpredictable. But, I must say, that this was probably one of the more entertaining drafts that I’ve seen in a long time, maybe ever.
For a draft that lacked star talent, it sure made up for it in craziness.
Sorry I wasn’t able to put out a second mock draft in time. But in all honesty, it wouldn’t have been much different than the first. Anyways, here are some my thoughts on this year’s draft.
3rd- Otto Porter. Probably one of the more well-rounded players of the class, and he’s only 20 years old. Porter improved a ton from his freshman season, which only helps add to why this was a good pick for the Wizards.
Now, Wizards fans probably have a lot to be happy about now, regarding the future of their team. With a core of Wall, Beal, and Porter, they have something going there. It wouldn’t surprise me if the Wizards make a run for the playoffs next year. Really like the core that the Wizards have going here. They just need to add a young big man and this might be a team to watch for in a couple of seasons. It’s quite possible that Porter ends up being the best player from this class when it’s all said and done.
6th- Nerlens Noel. It would have been really interesting to see a future of Noel-Davis in New Orleans. But at 6th overall (via Jrue Holiday trade), Noel is a good pick no matter who takes him. The Sixers made a good trade to get him, and were even able to keep their 11th overall pick in order to take Michael Carter-Williams.
On the whole, not just with this pick, I feel that the Sixers made good moves to solidify their rebuild status in a loaded 2014 draft. Good for them for realizing that the team they had was really not headed anywhere, so they blew it up without wasting any more time.
7th- Ben McLemore. He was rumoured to be a top pick for quite a while. So, for the Kings to get him at 7th overall, I think that is great value. With Tyreke Evans potentially on his way out, McLemore may get his shot at a starting role right away.
Questions about McLemore’s assertiveness or passion still remain, but his upside is worth the risk. Especially in a draft where there really are no “sure things” and at 7th the risk is very minimal, if any.
9th- Trey Burke. Was rumoured to potentially go as high as 2nd to the Orlando Magic because of their need for a PG. However, teams decided not to take any point guard until the 9th pick.
Now, with no competition in the way of the starting job, Burke should be able to come in and contribute right from the start of the season. It’s hard to imagine that anyone else except for Burke will be the starter for the Jazz at point for next season.
For that reason, he’s my early pick to win the Rookie of the Year award next season as of now.
12th- Steven Adams. The Thunder got a big man that they can develop, and also has the potential to be a good NBA player. The Thunder have lacked an interior presence for some time, so if Adams develops, they may have the guy that they’ve been waiting for.
The question will be though, is how long will it take to develop the young big man? The Thunder are obviously ready to contend for championships right now. So, Adams will need to develop as soon as possible to help them out with that.
But, as long as the Thunder have Perkins and Ibaka, they should be fine with giving Adams limited minutes to start.
25th- Reggie Bullock. Was one of the best, if not the best three-point shooters in the NCAA last season. So, the Clippers got a wing who can defend and hit the three with consistency. Something that will be useful for Chris Paul, who looks like will resign with the Clippers.
Considering the lack of depth at the position, and the fact that Crawford is a much better 6th man than starter, it wouldn’t surprise me if Bullock eventually becomes a starter at some point. Maybe even as early as next season.
29th- Archie Goodwin. Was a highly rated prospect from the 2012 high school class. However, after a pretty mediocre year at Kentucky, his stock plummeted and almost took him out of the first round. He’s not much of a shooter, but his athleticism and ability to get to the rim could make him a very useful player.
Despite his mediocre lone season at Kentucky, I still believe that Goodwin has the potential to be a really good NBA player. The fact that the Suns (via Golden State and Oklahoma City) were able to snag him at 29 is great value.
If the Suns are patient with Goodwin, this could turn out to be a really good pick for them. Since the Suns seem to be in a rebuild mode anyways, I don’t see how he won’t get an opportunity to develop over the next few years. So, he will be an interesting player to keep an eye on.
Least Favourite Picks:
1st- Anthony Bennett. Sorry Anthony. I always like to support the Canadian players, but I have to honestly say that I didn’t really understand this pick. In my opinion, it was not only a reach, but a pick which also doesn’t fill a position of need for the Cavaliers.
I can’t see Bennett being a SF in the NBA, and with them already having Tristan Thompson on the roster playing the same position and who has shown great improvements last season, it doesn’t make sense. Thompson looks like he can hold down the PF position long-term.
That’s not a knock on Bennett that he’s not deserving of number one, it’s just that I don’t believe that he fits with the Cavaliers roster specifically right now.
I do believe that he can still go on to have a great NBA career and be a solid player, but as of right now, I don’t see how that happens with the Cavs. Unless the Cavaliers have plans to make major trades before the season, I still say that Porter, Len or Noel would have been a better fit for this team.
4th- Cody Zeller. It’s obvious that the Bobcats need a better inside presence. But, I do not like this pick at all. The Bobcats need to draft for potential right now, and I think they made a mistake my passing on the potential of both McLemore and Noel who not only fill a position of need, but also arguably have the highest ceilings in the draft.
Zeller, despite his athleticism, doesn’t have the same upside as either player I just mentioned. This was really just a “safe” pick, a player that should make an immediate impact for the Bobcats, however, he’s likely not a player that will turn into an all-star in the future, which was something that the Bobcats needed to take a chance on.
5th- Alex Len. I know, considering that the Cavaliers almost took him first overall, it would seem like the Suns got a steal at fifth. However, I wasn’t really a fan of this pick either, for the exact same reasons as the Charlotte pick.
Obviously being the pick directly after Charlotte, Noel and McLemore were still on the board and in my opinion were both better picks for this team. Again, scouts are saying that Len has one of the highest upsides in the draft; the long-term upside of both Noel and McLemore is probably greater than the upside of Len.
McLemore would have been a good fit with the up tempo style that the Suns play, but, if the Suns wanted a centre, I think they would have been better off with Noel.
Potential Second Round Steals: