Early Season Top 10 Rookie Predictions
#1. Anthony Bennett (SF/PF) - Cleveland Cavs - 24 mpg 10.6 ppg 5.4 rpg .5 bpg .4 spg 46/29/69
Anthony Bennet is a guy with a lot of upside, but I due to Cleveland's revamp, I don't see him being a major stat stuff during is rookie campaign. Adding Andrew Bynum gives Cleveland 3 definate scoring options in Irving, Bynum and Waiters and the addition of Earl Clark gives them more experience at the same position Bennett plays. Now, Anthony will get his share of minutes, but I think it's in the mid 20's per game.
#2 Victor Oladipo (SG) - Orlando Magic - 31 mpg 15.1 ppg 5.1 rpg 3.0 apg .6 bpg 1.4 spg 44/37/75
Victor Oladiop is going to have the ball in his hands and he is going to log plenty of minutes for the Magic. With Jameer Nelson at 30 and only playing 56 games last year while missing 10 the year before, Oladipo is probably going to log a few minutes at the point as well as the SG. Whether Aaron Affalo or Oladipo is the starter, I still think Victor will get 30 mpg. Under Vaughn's coaching, last season, J.J. Reddick was a 31 mpg player as a 6th man and fill in starter. Dipo's gonna get the minutes, and I think he's going to produce.
#3 Otto Porter (SF) - Washington Wizards - 19 mpg 6.3 ppg 3.7 rpg 1.9 apg .4 bpg .8 spg 41/33/74
Otto Porter got a lot of flack for his summer league performance, and to some extent he deserved it. I think he's gonna get bullied at the forward position in the NBA, but he still has a lot of skill and Washington has a weakness at his position. Now, Glen Rice may end up being their guy at the SF position, but I think Porter will still get a decent chunk of minutes and with that I think he'll put up okay numnbers. I'm not closing the book on Porter, I think he can be good, but I'm not expecting much until he gets his strength up.
#4 Cody Zeller (PF) - Charlotte Bobcats - 32 mpg 13.4 ppg 8.1 rpg 1.1 apg 1.2 bpg .7 spg 48/30/75
I stated earlier that I think Charlotte will start Zeller at the 4 and use Bismack to backup both the 4 and 5 positions. Kemba and Jefferson are going to be the top two options, with Zeller and Henderson filling in as 3rd/4th options. I think Zeller is going to get plenty of shots and plenty of mintues for the Cats, and despite subpar length for a man his size, he's still a 7 footer with major springs and a good motor. He'll get knocked around in the paint, as he needs a little more weight, but if his face up game is as good as people say, I think he'll find a way to produce, especially off Jefferson double teams.
#5 Alex Len (C) - Pheonix Suns - 15 mpg 4 ppg 3.4 rpg .5 apg .9 bpg .2 spg 51/0/66
With Alex Len recovering from a foot injury, a injury that 7 footers are notorious for struggling to recover from, I think Pheonix will sit him as long as they need to and when he does come back, I think he'll get limited minutes. They have a double double center, and don't look to be very good. It'd be foolish to risk re-injury to Len by playing him too much. The Suns want to give him some burn when he returns, but risk/reward...I'm thinking he sits a lot.
#6 Nerlens Noel (C) - Philly 76ers - NDP
I think Philly rests Nerlens, lets him practice with the team when healthy and has him hit the weights and work on his post game. Could have a really nice rookie year in 14-15 if he works on his skill and body.
#7 Ben McLemore (SG) - Sacramento Kings - 29 mpg 13.3 ppg 4.2 rpg 1 apg 1.1 spg .6 bpg 41/39/78
Ben had a bi-polar Summer League showing, but I think Sacramento is going to throw him a lot of minutes and let him adjust. Let's face it, they pretty much have to. Their SG's on their roster are Thornton and Jimmer Fredette, a couple of 6'2'' instant offense type players. Ben is a little different will give them a different look, and I think will have an up and down season with some flashes of future potential.
#8 KCP (SG) - Detroit Pistons - 17 mpg 6.6 ppg 2.9 rpg .8 apg .5 spg .2 bpg 40/34/77
On draft night I suspected KCP would play a much larger role this year, but as the summer has progressed, I don't forsee the minutes I did in late June. With Singler a slew of guards who can play both positions and with more experience than Kentavious, I think he'll be brought along a little slower. I don't think Detroit wants Stucky for too much longer, so I think KCP will get his shot at starting, but probably not this year.
#9 Trey Burke (PG) - Utah Jazz - 33 mpg 11.9 ppg 3.3 rpg 7.4 apg 1.3 spg .1 bpg 39/36/80
With Mo Williams out the door, Trey Burke is pretty much the guy, and with John Lucas III as his backup, the only point on the roster who is a real distributor. I think Burke will put up very nice assist numbers, but this is a big role for a rookie and I think he'll struggle with efficiency and turnovers, but I think he'll put up a decent season in the process. He has work to do, but I like his fire.
#10 C.J. McCollum - (PG/SG) - Portland Trailblazers - 26 mpg 10.2 ppg 2.9 rpg 2.6 apg 42/38/79
Portland has done a lot to fill out their bench and I think C.J. will be a fan favorite coming off the bench and scoring the ball in a variety of ways. He'll be splitting minutes with Will Barton at the 2, but he'll also be logging some minutes backing up Lillard. I could see McCollum being a premiere 6th man in this league and I think he'll start to show that as a rookie in Portland. I've always thought his ceiling (role and production wise) was Jamal Crawford.
Kelly Olynyk IMO is a ROY candidate
Pretty big minutes per game for McLemore. He could easily be higher than that with those stats too. Who do you think should start on day 1, McLemore or Thornton?
His adjusted per 36 min based off my prediction is 16.5 ppg. I'd bet Ben starts because Thornton can get buckets and could fit the role of a bench spark. If Ben is off you can put in Thornton, I'll bet their mpg is pretty similar.
I like your take on Porter. IMO Porter is not ready to start for a team with playoff aspirations. His offensive game in the Summer League was a concern for me. He's big on shooting the ball, except he's just an average shooter.
love Oladipo, think he is going to be good,
Burke is going to get the minutes so think he has to be considered.
agree that McCollum might not see the floor as much as you think!
Shabazz = Beasley with out the skill
still think that Zeller is nothing more then a role player
I like Bennet, but you have to be patient, not a #1 pick any other year
have not made up my mind on porter, could be just what the Wizards need or.....
i am going to withhold judgment on Noel until healthy
Mclemore has the ability to be very good, but it is Sac town!
my dark horse is Rudy Gobert, with length + playing time he could be the story of this draft!
KCP after a draft you look at certain players and say WTF? (would be different if drafted in a better situation!
Greek freak. I think he can be good, but needs a team willing to each him
Schroeder? Larkin I am intrigued by both and hope both show the rest of the league the messed up!
When I say top 10, I mean top 10 picks, hence the same order of the actual draft and my inclusion of a guy with a DNP. That's why guys like Olynyk, Bazz and others are unlisted.
I don't get how people didn't realize it was the order in which players where taken. It's quite obvious.
As a Suns fan I have to sadly agree that Len is going struggle in limited minutes. I think those numbers would be accurate even without the injuries. I'm very low on Len if you can't tell.
Burke over 7apg is bold but he'll be getting the opportunity. The question is what will his TO per game be.
No way trey Burke puts up those numbers, nor does he get those minutes. He won't avg 5 assists a game. He is not that good right now and they will probably pick up another veteran pg at some point before or early in the season. His only real weapon is that he has deep range and even that is inconsistent. Too short, not quick enough, can't finish in the paint with nba contact, inconsistent, not a great distributor to begin with, especially if he isn't a huge threat to score. Maybe down the road when he figures out ways to do what he needs to to be effective but I don't see it this year. He'll be a jameer Nelson type player. Solid eventually, not spectacular.
Maybe my prediction will be a little different if a veteran PG is added, but as of now Trey Burke is literally the only PG under contract by the Utah Jazz. Lucas III is a combo who is really best used as a 2nd unit shooter. I'm not saying Burke is going to be a future All-Star, but I think if you throw him in the fire he'll put up numbers just because of the amount of time he plays, but I don't think the 39% FG is particularly flattering and I would also suspect his A/TO ratio is under 2.