Extended NBA Mock Draft 3.0
With the Final Four less than a week away, here's an updated mock draft with many player's seasons having come to an end. There are still quite a few unknowns as far as who's entering, and with so much parity, there is sure to be a lot of movement in the mock as the draft approches. *Team needs will be factored in once the NBA season ends and the draft order (aside from the lottery) is set.
||Ben McLemore 6-5 201 SG Kansas Fr.||The battle for the top pick has apparently become a two horse race. After Nerlens Noel's season ending ACL injury, McLemore became the favorite to be the top pick. But with inconsistent play, culminated by a dreadful tourney performance in which he scored 2 points on 0-9 shooting vs. UNC, McLemore left the door open for Noel to go first even with the ACL injury. McLemore bounced back with a big final game against Michigan, showing off his feathery touch and athletic gifts. He is not a finished product and scouts will nitpick his level of assertiveness, lack of a fiery personality and other aspects leading up to the draft. But at the end of the day, he's the guy in this draft with the greatest shot at becoming a superstar. While the feat has not been accomplished (a SG going 1) in 40 years, McLemore is in position to do it. His outside shot is comparable to a perfect golf swing, it's a thing of beauty. Combine that with freakish athleticism and you have a high level prospect. NBA Comparison: Ray Allen|
||Nerlens Noel 6-11 208 PF Kentucky Fr.||On the bright side for Noel in sustaining the ACL injury, he no longer had any more games for scouts to nitpick the deficiencies in his skill set. His value to the Wildcats also became abundantly clear as the team languished without him, falling short of the NCAA tournament, dropping 4 of 8 in his absence. Noel's length, leaping ability and cat-like reflexes make him an extraordinary shot blocker. He shows a willingness to hustle and play hard, which combined with his elite level athleticism is very encouraging. His offensive game, however, is extremely raw and may never be anything more than put back dunks and hook shots. He also needs to get much stronger as his upper body and legs are rail thin. Granted, added weight could ultimately put even more stress on what appear to be fragile knees. The other real concern is that Noel tore the same ACL that he had torn as a sophomore in high school. After coming back faster than doctors had recommended, some wonder if this recent injury was inevitable and whether there could be structural damage making further injuries to the same knee more likely. Regardless, Noel's ability to impact the defensive end puts him in the running for the top overall pick and he should land in the top 3, despite not being able to fully work out for teams leading up to the draft. NBA Comparison: Larry Sanders|
||Marcus Smart 6-4 225 PG/SG Oklahoma St. Fr.||Despite Okie State losing in the first round of the tournament, Smart's stock was virtually unaffected. His leadership is rare for such a young player, and his intensity/energy is infectious. He always seems to be one step ahead of the competition, showing great anticipation. He's also a highly intelligent decision maker with a great feel for the game. His PG skills are a work in progress, but it's important to remember this is his first full year playing the position. While he lacks elite athleticism, his ability to be a leader and impact games makes him special, as he showed with his performance beating Kansas at Phog Allen Field house. Look for his shot to improve over time as he'll put in the work to improve upon it. NBA Comparison: Andre Miller|
||Otto Porter 6-8 205 SF Georgetown So.||Porter made a very impressive jump from his freshman to sophomore seasons, showing no difficulty in becoming the leader of the team and winning Big East Player of the Year. Otto is about as low risk as it gets in this draft, however his ceiling isn't as great as some of the other top prospects. He's a relentless defender and a pro athlete, but it's unlikely that he will ever be an elite level scorer. He's very thin, but weight/strength shouldn't be an issue at the 3 position. He showed the ability to knock down key shots throughout his short college career. Despite a less than picture perfect jumpshot, he gets results. Porter's consistency and potential makes him a possible top 5 pick in this year's draft. NBA Comparison: Tayshaun Prince|
||Anthony Bennett 6-7 240 PF UNLV Fr.||Despite being 6'7, Bennett's wingspan makes him essentially a 6'9 player and he's got massive shoulders and hands. Bennett wins the award for most vicious dunks in college as he had numerous dunks that reminded fans of Shaq. While he lacks the foot speed to defend on the perimeter, essentially making him a stretch 4. Some scouts have even mentioned him as a potential #1 pick, though that's probably a reach, considering he's a tweener and the last 6'9 or under PF to go first was Kenyon Martin. Bennett battled injury problems in high school and appeared to be breaking down some towards the end of the year. How big of an issue teams see his injury concerns being will likely factor into just how high Bennett ends up going. NBA Comparison: Rodney Rogers|
||Alex Len 7-1 240 C Maryland So.||Len shows the agility to get up and down the floor, make plays at the rim and the touch to knock down shots from mid range. While some may knock his fluidity, toughness and consistency, it's important to remember that bigs normally take the longest to mature. For a 20 year old who is still adjusting to American culture, being away from Ukraine where he grew up, his sophomore season was excellent. Len is the classic boom or bust pick that teams in the mid lottery will be afraid to take as well as not take and miss on. NBA Comparison: Jonas Valanciunas|
||Trey Burke 6-0 180 PG Michigan So.||Burke's stock has been on a meteoric rise all season and he's used a clutch tournament run to solidify himself as a likely lottery pick and possible top 10 pick. His performance against Kansas was legendary, as he refused to allow his team to lose, coming up with all the big plays down the stretch including a game tying 3 in the final seconds. Burke was not only the top PG in the nation this year, he was the best player in the nation. He carried the Wolverines all season with a will to win that was unmatched on the college level. His 6'5 wingspan helps offset his 6'0 frame giving him some additional length to get shots off. While detractors may argue that Burke's attributes will make the transition to the next level difficult, his "immeasurables"; competitiveness, heart and determination are off the charts. NBA Comparison: Kemba Walker|
||Shabazz Muhammad 6-6 225 SF UCLA Fr.||Shabazz had a rough ending to the season with the report coming out that he's actually 20 instead of 19 as his father had purported. He also struggled in UCLA's tourney loss to Minnesota shooting 6-for-18. But he's still one of the most talented prospects in this year's draft with a killer instinct and high level scoring ability. He has turned living with Tourette Syndrome into a positive as he plays with a chip on his shoulder exerting a high level of intensity at all times. Detractors point to his less than 1 assist per game, labeling him one dimensional and even a "ball hog", but in a draft devoid of talent, don't expect him to fall very far. His character and abilities on the court could ultimately be undervalued by the time the draft takes place. NBA Comparison: Nick Young|
||Cody Zeller 6-11 240 PF/C Indiana So.||Zeller's stock took the biggest hit during the tournament as he looked shell shocked in their Sweet Sixteen loss to Syracuse and their 2-3 zone defense. He failed to live up to the preseason hype and much of the time chose to defer instead of taking on the role of the team's star. It obviously has taken a toll on his draft stock and there's question about whether he will even come out this year. Granted, he's still likely a top 10 pick if he does. Zeller shows the ability to knock down mid range shots with regularity and runs the floor like a gazelle, which is rare for a 7-footer. Unfortunately his post game did not advance the way many expected and his athleticism and explosiveness, whether due to injury or for unexplained reasons, seemed to disappear for much of his sophomore year. NBA Comparison: LaMarcus Aldridge|
||Victor Oladipo 6-4 190 SG/SF Indiana Jr.||Oladipo is a late bloomer and draws rave reviews for his demeanor and personality from those who have spent time around him. While he may lack superstar potential, he appears to be the ultimate glue type player as an overachiever who brings boundless energy. His explosiveness is off the charts, particularly off of two feet and his shooting and ball handling have shown surprising improvement. At 6'3 - 6'4, he's undersized, taking his long term potential down a notch. Some wild comparisons such as Dwyane Wade and even Jordan have been thrown out for Oladipo. But those are unfair for a player who will be a role player, not a star at the next level. NBA Comparison: Tony Allen|
||Kelly Olynyk 7-0 240 C Gonzaga Jr.||Olynyk is another big riser in this year's draft. He was flying way under the radar before this season, having red shirted last year with Robert Sacre as the team's starting center. He was arguably the most dominant big in the country and despite Gonzaga's flame out in the tourney, he was solid. Kelly lacks great athleticism and quickness, but shows the skill set of a 10 year veteran. Olynyk's ability to defend the pick and roll has led scouts to believe he can make it defensively in the league. He's got a Euro-style game, but many scouts are convinced that his skill level and size will be enough to overcome a lack of sheer athleticism and become a solid NBA post player. NBA Comparison: Spencer Hawes|
||Michael Carter Williams 6-6 190 PG Syracuse So.||Carter-Williams is a true point guard with tremendous size. At 6'6 he reminds some of the high school version of Shawn Livingston that many became so enamored with before his tragic knee injury. Though not quite the talent, MCW's ability to set teammates up for baskets is special for a player his size. His length, having a near 6'9 wingspan really helps his cause defensively. He has a lot of work to do on his outside shooting and must prove that he can hang with the speed of today's NBA PGs. He would likely pair well with a small 2-guard like Monta Ellis as he would probably be better suited defending 2 guards while running the point. He's got some off court baggage (shop lifting incident) that will need to be addressed in interviews with teams. Plus, the track record for Syracuse products has not been great in recent years. He's another boom or bust pick who could end up a star or not even making it in the league. In a down draft, Carter-Williams has top 10 potential. NBA Comparison: Shaun Livingston|
||Glenn Robinson III 6-6 200 SF Michigan Fr.||Robinson had a very solid showing in the tourney and will benefit from Michigan's Final Four run if he decides to declare for this year's draft. He shows the explosiveness and strength to finish at the rim as well as solid potential to play on the perimeter. Scouts would still like to see more out of him on the defensive end and with his ability to handle the ball. "Lil Big Dog" was a little less consistent as the season has progressed, but had an impressive end to the season. With basketball bloodlines, GR3 shows intriguing potential for the future. NBA Comparison: Andre Iguodala|
||CJ McCollum 6-3 190 PG/SG Lehigh Sr.||As a likely first rounder in 2012, some questioned McCollum's decision to return to campus despite virtually knocking defending champion Duke out of the NCAA tournament single handedly. This year CJ was able to establish himself in many scout's minds before going down with a season ending broken foot. He's got a nasty crossover and ISO game, but questions linger about his ability to play the PG position as well as defend. If he falls very far, he could end up being an excellent value, as teams may be spooked by the unknowns surrounding him. NBA Comparison: Stephen Curry|
||Mason Plumlee 6-11 240 PF/C Duke Sr.||Plumlee was one of the surprises in college this year. He added some offensive skills around the basket, and played the year with surprising consistency. He is a better version of his brother Miles who somehow landed in the late first round in 2012. While he's not overly skilled in the post, he is very explosive, runs the floor well and shows a willingness to fight for rebounds and play tough in the paint. In such a weak draft, Plumlee figures to land in the 12-18 range. NBA Comparison: Yi Jianlian|
||Kentavious Caldwell Pope 6-5 205 SG Georgia So.||KCP is an underrated athlete with the ability to get to the rack as well as create and knock down shots on the perimeter. He doesn't blow you away in any one area, but he's a good shooter and scorer. After a freshman season in which he struggled with efficiency, he was able to improve upon his shooting from the floor and beyond the arch. He'll get looks in the late lottery and should find a spot somewhere in the first round. NBA Comparison: Michael Redd|
||Rudy Gobert 7-1 230 C France 1992||Gobert has struggled to put up consistent numbers in the French League. So the question is whether teams will be willing to look past the lack of productivity and draft him on potential. He has ridiculous length with a reported 7 foot 9 wingspan. He also possesses good shooting touch and appears to have a body that will allow him to add strength and eventually battle in the paint in the NBA. His mobility and athleticism are average by NBA standards and he still needs to get tougher and develop a better feel for the game. NBA Comparison: Shawn Bradley|
||Giannis Adetokoubo 6-9 215 SF/PF Greece 1994||Adetokoubo is this year's "International man of mystery". He's got a tremendous basketball body and some wicked highlights on youtube. The problem for him and scouts is that the level of competition that he's currently playing at is very low, so getting an accurate gauge of his talent and potential is difficult. Overseas contacts that have tracked him over the past few seasons and are familiar with him claim that he's got the talent to be a late lottery pick this year. He'll need to improve upon his shooting, but he's said to be further along than Batum at the same age and he's a similar type of athletic specimen. NBA Comparison: Nicolas Batum|
||Doug McDermott 6-7 225 SF Creighton Jr.||McDermott ended the year 2nd in scoring at 23.1 ppg and is a NPOY candidate. He's not very athletic, but as an elite shooter some scouts envision him in a role similar to a Kyle Korver. McDermott still plays more as a 4 than a 3 and he'll need to transition completely to the SF position to make it in the NBA. The idea of becoming one of college basketball's top 5-10 all time scorers (and even an outside shot at becoming 2nd all time to Pete Maravich) plus helping his Dad (Creighton Coach Greg McDermott) in their first season in the Big Ten could be enough to entice him to return for his senior season. NBA Comparison: Luke Babbitt|
||Dario Saric 6-10 230 PF Split Croatia 1994||Saric is an immensely skilled forward who was a point guard in his junior years but due to his growth spurt has become a forward. He lacks the foot speed to defend on the wing which means he must continue to put weight on and become a power forward. He has tremendous ball handling, passing and feel for the game, but whether or not he has the quickness to utilize it is the question. He still has a lot of work to do on his jump shot, but his desire to be great makes him one of the top international prospect for this years draft, despite some physical limitations. NBA Comparison: Dejan Bodiroga|
||James McAdoo 6-9 235 SF/PF UNC So.||McAdoo has really struggled with his adjustment into team leader and go to player. He lacks intensity and aggressiveness and despite being a strong athlete, his lack of a true NBA position could prove costly. McAdoo was considered a possible lottery pick had he entered the 2012 draft after his freshman year. He lacks the speed to beat opponents on the perimeter and the strength to overpower bigs in the paint. He gets a lot of baskets on talent, but there are legitimate concerns about how his skills translate to the next level. McAdoo's stock has really taken a hit and he's seen as a late first round pick if he enters his name in this year's draft. NBA Comparison: Michael Beasley|
||Mitch McGary 6-10 260 C Michigan Fr.||McGary has been so crucial to Michigan's Final Four run that he's getting first round mentions from scouts. Most would like to see him do what he's done in the tourney over the course of a entire season, but they may not get that opportunity. Looking at his numbers on the season, one would be hard pressed to draft him in the first round. But considering his run through March and how he dominated Jeff Withey (25 and 14) and Patric Young (11 and 9), his stock is skyrocketing. McGary plays on emotion and the thing that scouts will need to determine is whether he can maintain this type of energy/passion on a consistent basis. NBA Comparison: Bill Laimbeer|
||Lucas Nogueira 7-0 220 PF Brazil 1992||Nogueira is extremely raw, but players with his size and agility are rare. He had a breakout performance at the Copa America U18 tournament in 2010 and some NBA scouts came away saying he had top 5 pick potential. He lost most of that hype with a dreadful showing at the 2011 adidas Eurocamp in Treviso, but this season he's playing in Spain for Estudiantes and regaining momentum. He's raw, but so long and athletic that he appears to be the perfect "stash pick" for a late first round team like OKC or San Antonio. "Bebe" developed a reputation for being soft and lazy, but this season it's apparent that he's focused and working to get stronger and developing his game. For him, it's just a matter of becoming more aggressive and maintaining his focus. Bebe is a huge wild card for this year's draft and could really begin to catch fire and move up draft boards after an impressive season playing in the world's second best league - the ACB. NBA Comparison: Samuel Dalembert|
||Gorgui Dieng 6-10 245 PF/C Louisville Jr.||Dieng is benefiting from Louisville's deep tourney run, showing the ability to consistently knock down mid range shots. While not a speed burner, he shows good defensive abilities, particularly in blocking shots. Dieng missed a portion of the year with a fractured wrist, but his return coincided with the team's resurgence as he anchors Louisville's interior defense. The strong finish to the year has put him back in late first round discussions. NBA Comparison: Ruben Boumtje-Boumtje|
||Tim Hardaway Jr 6-5 190 SG Michigan Jr.||Hardaway Jr. shows mental toughness and consistent effort at all times. He has a well developed offensive game with good elevation and form on his shot. The big knock on him has always been foot speed as he lacks a great first step to beat opponents off the dribble. He also has a slight frame and appears a little bit frail. He grew up around the game, and that is apparent with his focus and feel. Hardaway lacks great upside and is seen as a likely rotation player, but his toughness and professional approach gives him a chance to grab a late first round spot. NBA Comparison: Shandon Anderson|
||Jeff Withey 7-0 235 C Kansas Sr.||Withey certainly appears to have shot blocking potential for the NBA. The all time block record holder for the NCAA tourney has seen his game steadily progress as he's become a factor on the offensive end as well. Detractors will point to the fact that it took him so long to make an impact in college and that he's beating up on players 2-3 years younger than himself. With his lack of lateral quickness and overall speed running the floor, is he a dinosaur that came to the game 20 years too late? Or will his shot blocking ability make him a long term future back up in the league? NBA Comparison: Travis Knight|
||CJ Leslie 6-8 200 SF/PF NC State Jr.||Leslie is one of the draft's most explosive athletes. A former McDonald's All American, CJ was integral to NC State's tournament birth, though the team did fall short of expectations. Some scouts are him extremely high on him, while others consider him an early to mid second rounder at best. His lack of a true position and body language raise red flags about him as a legit first rounder and NBA player. Interviews and workouts will be crucial for Leslie. NBA Comparison: Terrence Morris|
||Allen Crabbe 6-6 190 SG California Jr.||The Pac 12 player of the year, Crabbe has a sweet outside shooting stroke and solid athleticism. He also possesses good size for the 2-guard position. The biggest knocks against him has been his toughness, level of intensity and consistency. He had a solid finish to the year, leading Cal into the second round of the tourney, but it seems that he's a player that needs a push (or shove) to motivate him. He's not considered a self starter, so having coaches and people around him that will facilitate his development will be key. Crabbe didn't always display the best body language and showing that he's a team player with a positive attitude will be paramount. He'll need to do well in individual match ups in team workouts in order to convince scouts that he's a legitimate first rounder for this year's draft. NBA Comparison: Francisco Garcia|
||Nate Wolters 6-4 193 PG North Dakota Sr.||Wolters is a flashy lead guard who some scouts are extremely high on. He has great creativity and shows a flare for the dramatic. He is a solid athlete but lacks elite quickness off the dribble and needs to improve upon his outside shooting. Wolters struggled some in the tournament matching up with Michigan's Trey Burke although neither guard had a great shooting performance. Wolters was 4th in the nation in scoring and had the single greatest scoring output of the past 3 seasons dropping 53 points against IPFW. NBA Comparison: Luke Ridnour|
|30.||DeShaun Thomas 6-7 221 SF/PF Ohio State Jr.||Thomas doesn't have great athleticism or foot speed. In fact his movements resemble a creaky old NBA veteran who is in his 12th season. But he's such a tremendous scorer that has been getting a lot of first round buzz from scouts. He was a top player in his class throughout high school and has had a prolific college career. There are legitimate concerns about how well his game will translate as he plays like an undersized, stretch 4, but his ability to get "buckets" and score points can't be overlooked. NBA Comparison: Ryan Gomes|
Just missed: Adreian Payne 6-9 230 PF Michigan St. Jr., Tony Mitchell 6-8 235 SF/PF North Texas So., Isaiah Austin 7-0 205 PF/C Baylor Fr., Archie Goodwin 6-4 190 SG Kentucky Fr., Isaiah Canaan 6-1 191 PG Murray St. Sr., Jamaal Franklin 6-5 185 SG/SF San Diego St. Jr., Lorenzo Brown 6-4 190 PG NC State Jr.
I don't see Archie Goodwin, Tony Mitchell, or Isaiah Austin falling to the second round.
McAdoo and Beasley are at about the opposite ends of the skill-level spectrum. And Mason Plumlee is nothing like Yi on offense.
Pistons are not drafting Anthony Bennett another undersized power-foward who played in a &$#%#&@! conference, i wouldn't mind him at SF, but hes too big to play small forward and i dont want another Jason Maxiell on our team, we already have the froncourt of the future in Drummond and Monroe, the pistons need a SG/SF or some type of wing player that will either score, or play defense like Oladipo or Shabazz
That "&$#%#&@! conference" sent less teams to the tournament than only the Big East and the Big Ten
That "&$#%#&@! conference" only had two of its five teams (Colorado St. and San Diego St.) make it to the Round of 32, while another lost to Harvard in the first round.
The MWC isn't a dog&$#%#&@! conference.
Edit: Creighton is going to the Big East, not the Big Ten. As a realist, I see Doug coming back for his senior year, even in a weak draft. He needs to work on his defense badly if he is ever going to defend the 3 spot. He is going to play in the NBA with his shooting ability, but I predict that he comes back next year to help his dad and Creighton in their first year in the new Big East. Also, chasing #2 all time in D-1 behind Pistol Pete is kind of a big deal.
think alot of these comparisons are pretty inaccurate..
- plumlee - did 90% of his work on the inside and is by no means soft, so comparing that to an overhyped foreign player whose favorite shot was a pick n pop who was called nothing but soft doesnt make much sense. plumlee is an efficient scorer n great athlete who seems like hes still improving, think he can be a productive nba player.
- mcadoo - the scouting report seems accurate, however beasley was one of the ncaa leading rebounders his freshman year, and was anything but unpolished. bob huggins brought something out of him that hasnt been seen since, theres a reason why some draft experts said beasley was the better talent then derrick rose, its because he was an elite talent. mcadoo is nowhere near that type of talent in the college game.
mcdermott- doesnt seem like youve seen creighton play this year, because babbitt although a highly rated player out of high school, it was fairly obvious that he didnt like to defend and his defining nba skill would be shooting the 3 who probably should have stayed in school as he was not all that polished. mcdermott is a multi-faceted scorer who played very hard at all times (as did his team), and really understood how to read screens n move without the ball, and had no time taking contact. think his stock may improve when the blue jays play better teams on a regular basis n he proves that he can score over length. (42 pts vs a rugged wichita state team already suggests that)
other thoughts- zeller played very well all year, indiana had many weapons, so i dont believe he was deferring think he played well within the system, and didnt force shots as watford did in the cuse game..glen robinson is nowhere near ready for the nba n should not go pro, many of his baskets were spoon fed dunks, as he struggles even to handle with his left hand, best attibute is who is dad is, and that he looks like a player. mcgary shows awesome potential and I am a huge, huge fan, but im hoping he returns and dominates for a full season, as he would be much higher then 22. you dont see agile bigs who can shoot the 18 footer, pass, and attack the boards n rim with that energy.
...just in case you didn't know. The picks are not made according to team needs YET. It basically is a top prospect list. The teams are just meant as a guide. Once the lottery is over, then the picks start to become edited to factor in current rosters and team needs. For awhile the Bulls were taking a PG with their pick which would be ridiculous with Rose, Hinrich , and the recently drafted in the 1st round Teague already on the roster. Maybe it was Trey Burke or McCollum, I don't remember. But, at the time that was the most logical part of the draft for those guys. Just give it time, it will start top make sense when everything falls into place.
Good catch on Creighton. The author must have thought that since Creighton is in the heart of the midwest that it makes 1000000% more sense that it be a part of the Big 10 (I refuse to write B1G more than once a post since it's dumb as hell) and Rutgers and Maryland make or sense in the BIg EAST. I read that and said, "Maybe they changed it and the Big 10 Network ISN'T making every conference realignment decision for the Big 10 anymore! Yay!" But, alas I was wrong.
Sad how the game is changing.
You have players who clearly would benefit from an additonal season, but they're so spooked at HS SENIORS incoming, that they leave early.
In some cases is warranted b/c they WILL GET EXPOSED if they stay (GR3)
In other cases, its misguided, b/c a year as 'the man" would put McGary in top 10 status, for example.
How many more years before we admit that white bigs just dont pan out HAHAHA
I'm not touching Alex Len or Zeller that high...
good notes, but idiotic comparisons. Plumlee is NOT Yi....not even close, nothing like him at all. Where does that come from???????????????????????????????? Plumlee is something like kris humphries but better....tougher. And McDermott is a tweener but a high hoop IQ.Bu tnothing like luke babbitt...just because he's white doesnt mean he's like babbit. He does remind a tad of luke Harongody, but not that much. He could develop into carl landry best case scenario. Tony mitchell will be in the first round, and McDermott wont be. CJ leslie wont be either I dont think. Guys like Jamal Franklin will for sure be in the first I think, and brandon paul MIGHT be......personally I think Len is going to be pretty good.....he just needs time. Bennett i love, but his motor worries me. Cody is never going to be as good as Aldridge, but i can accept the comparison. McAdoo is nothing like Beasley. McAdoo is a poor man's Brandon Bass maybe...not nearly ever going to be that good. He's lazy like beasley though. Glenn Robinson isnt Iguodala either. He's a bit like Quincy pondexter though. I do like the Olidipo comparison to tony allen...thats about exactly right in a sense...but Olidipo is more ahtletic and quicker.