A Substitute for War

Basketball philosophy

2013 NBA Mock Draft (April)

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With the college season over, here is my current mock draft of the 1st round. To get the order for the top 3, I played the ESPN lotto machine:

1. Phoenix Suns – PF Nerlens Noel: Reportedly the clear favorite to go 1st. A creative team may look elsewhere, but Phoenix feels like by the book management. Noel immediately becomes the most exciting player and face of the team.

2. Orlando Magic – PG Trey Burke: As I wrote last week, I suspect Rob Hennigan is targeting feel for the game first players which is Burke’s defining trait while filling their need at PG.

3. Charlotte Bobcats – SG Ben McLemore: The Bobcats need offense, Ben provides that at SG and his spacing fits perfectly between Kemba Walker and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist’s penetration game, especially complimenting the latter’s total lack of range.

4. Cleveland Cavaliers – SF Otto Porter: The Cavs’ draft picks scream advanced metrics, for the stat community Porter is a favorite for his rebounding, assists, blocks and steals for a wing. Small forward is also the Cavaliers position of need.

5. Detroit Pistons – SG/SF Victor Oladipo: The Pistons have needed a blue chip SG or SF for years. Oladipo gives them a high potential slasher and defender, both of which they need. The Pistons history is steeped with elite defensive teams, pairing Oladipo and Drummond would likely mean another is coming.

6. New Orleans Hornets – PG Marcus Smart: Greivis Vazquez is a fine point guard, not enough to draft around. Marcus Smart gives the Hornets a high upside, blue chip point guard to be Anthony Davis’ left hook.

7. Sacramento Kings – PF Anthony Bennett: Bennett is a talented power forward, who can stretch the floor beside Demarcus Cousins. The Kings may also make the ill fated decision of trying Bennett at the SF for a few years.

8. Oklahoma City Thunder (from Toronto) – C Alex Len: The fit for the Thunder is getting a long term center to replace Kendrick Perkins. Len gives them offensive and shotblocking upside. Wouldn’t surprise me if the Thunder took an international player like Adetukunbo here strictly to stash them for financial reasons, with a scary luxury tax situation next year.

9. Washington Wizards – SF Shabazz Muhammad: With a backcourt and frontcourt playing well with a healthy John Wall, the Wizards try to fill the 3 spot and upgrade their scoring and spacing with Shabazz.

10. Minnesota Timberwolves – SG Archie Goodwin: Goodwin should gain buzz through the workouts and combine for his amazing athletic tools. He fills a Wolves need for a blue chip SG, although his lack of shooting is a poor fit David Kahn has usually taken “best player available”.

11. Philadelphia 76ers – C Steven Adams: In the wake of the Andrew Bynum shipwreck, Philadelphia grabs a center with high shotblocking and rebounding potential with his amazing physical talents.

12. Portland Trailblazers – PF/C Gorgui Dieng: Portland needs interior defense, with Dieng gives them with his length and intelligence.

13. Dallas Mavericks – PF/C Cody Zeller: The buzz for Cody is fading fast, leaving Dallas to swoop in getting a high end PF/C who can both help Dirk next year, then replace him in the future.

14. Phoenix Suns (from LA Lakers): PF/C Mitch McGary: McGary gives Phoenix a bulkier frontcourt partner beside Noel, who’ll also produce while Noel recovers from his ACL.

15. Milwaukee Bucks – SF Giannis Adetekunbo – Giannis is a high upside small forward, likely the position the Bucks are looking to fill with this spot.

16. Boston Celtics – PF/C Kelly Olynyk: With the Kevin Garnett era winding down, Olynyk gives them upside and spacing at the PF spot.

17. Utah Jazz – PG Michael Carter-Williams: Utah almost has to take a point guard with one of their 2 picks. With Burke rising up the boards, MCW seems an obvious fit.

18. Atlanta Hawks – C Rudy Gobert: The Hawks have been looking for a C to move Al Horford to PF with for years. Gobert is likely to be picked above Withey due to athleticism and length getting favored in the draft.

19. Chicago Bulls – C Jeff Withey: With Joakim Noah’s durability issues and the value Omer Asik had to the Bulls as his backup, Withey steps into the Asik defensive backup role.

20. Atlanta Hawks (from Houston): PF James Michael McAdoo: McAdoo is a high upside PF who fills a need if Josh Smith is on his way out of Atlanta.

21. Utah Jazz (from Golden State): SF Sergey Karasev: Karasev’s high IQ and 3 point shooting ability fits the Jazz, both their team needs and culture.

22. Brooklyn Nets – SG/SF Jamaal Franklin: Brooklyn can use defense and don’t appear to be fans of Marshon Brooks, Franklin can be a useful rotation player.

23. Indiana Pacers – PG/SG CJ McCollum: While George Hill is the starting PG of the future, McCollum fits in nicely in Indiana in a 6th man shooter and scorer, if not starting SG.

24. New York Knicks – PF Mason Plumlee: Mason gives New York some presence inside on the glass, a nice backup for Melo’s stretch game at the 4.

25. Los Angeles Clippers – SG Kentavious Caldwell-Pope: Caldwell-Pope looks like a solid rotation 2 guard with shooting and defensive potential, who can take some of Willie Green and Chauncey Billups’ minutes next year.

26. Minnesota Timberwolves (from Memphis) – SG/SF Reggie Bullock: If they took Goodwin, the Timberwolves would need to fill their need for shooting here. Getting 3pt shooting from the SF would help the Wolves a lot.

27. Denver Nuggets – PF CJ Leslie: Leslie is this year’s Perry Jones III, a super talented PF who’s considered an enigma. His athleticism and feel will be scooped up by someone who plans on sending him to the D League next year.

28. Oklahoma City Thunder – PF/C Isaiah Austin: Another lottery talent falls to the Thunder. Austin’s skill for a 7 footer could pay dividends down the road.

29. San Antonio Spurs – SF/PF Doug McDermott: McDermott is born to be a Spur steal with his IQ and shooting ability.

30. Cleveland Cavaliers (from Miami) – SF Kyle Anderson: Anderson is another favorite of advanced metrics team, as a high upside stat stuffer. Although Porter is the SF of the future, Anderson gives the Cavs depth.

Written by jr.

April 9, 2013 at 12:58 pm

Posted in Basketball, NBA Draft

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One Response

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  1. Mitch McGary won’t even go pro! But I do like Oladipo to the Pistons he’ll be a great fir


    April 10, 2013 at 5:55 am

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