My mock draft 5/24/09 (with reasoning behind entire 1st round)
Here is my mock draft with some reasoning behind the picks
1. LAC - Blake Griffin - This is really a no brainer. No explanation really needed, hes the best in the class hands down.
2. MEM- Ricky Rubio - They have Conley and also Mayo who can play the point a bit but Rubio is a potential cant miss prospect. He can split time with Conley. You need two solid PGs on your team unless you have a superstar PG. Rubio could be that superstar but not in his rookie season.
3. OKC - Hasheem Thabeet - I feel like this is another no brainer. WIth Westbrook, Durant, and Green, the Thunder is really missing a true SG and a true C. Thabeet may never be a big time offensive threat but on a team with Westbrook and Durant he will not need to score. He will just need to be a game changer on the defensive end where the Thunder need the most help.
4. SAC - Jordan Hill - There really isn't a position that the Kings don't need and so I think they could go with whoever they think is best available here. I see them taking Hill because he is arguably the best available here and has the potential to be a very solid PF in the league. He may never be a prennial all star but it would not surprise me if he went to a few all star games and put up solid numbers his whole career.
5. WSH - James Harden - The Wizards have Arenas and some youth at the PG spot, Caron Butler can play SG and SF, Jaimsion can play SF and PF so they dont necessarily need SG here but there are no PFs left worthy of this #5 pick. Harden will be able to give Butler and Jamison breaks and he can flat out score the basketball. He may never be a player that leads his team but on a team like the Wizards he wont have to.
6. MIN - Demar Derozan - Minnesota is solid enough at the PF and C postiion to where they can wait. They need a dynamite scorer/athlete and Derozan is exactly that. He could be the next Vince Carter without a doubt and Minnesota needs a superstar like that. Minnesota could look PG here but I think the potential of Derozan is what will set him apart from everyone else at this pick.
7. GSW - Brandon Jennings - GSW doesnt really have a true PG on their team. Jennings is at his best when in a run and gun system and Golden State would fit his playing style very well. I think the Warriors would love to get Jennings here if he is still available.
8. NYK - Stephen Curry - It has been pretty well known that the Knicks like Curry at the 8 pick. Although i think this is a little high for Curry, I think he would flourish in the Knicks system and the Knicks need a big time score/shooter.
9. TOR - Tyreke Evans - Toronto is looking for some more scoring to help Bosh out. Tyreke could end up being the top scorer in this class. He has the potential to be a big time PG or wing in the NBA. Tyreke began to dominate at Memphis when he was moved to the PG spot. I dont see him primarily playing PG in the NBA but on a team like Toronto I could see him doing a lot for the team.
10. MIL - Wayne Ellington - I do not think Wayne Ellington is the 10th best player in this class but this is purely a need pick and I think Ellington is the next best pure SG. Michael Redd is over the hill and MIL needs to think about his replacement. Enter Wayne Ellington. Possibly the best shooter in the class besides Curry and Ellington showed at North Carolina that he could get his own shot.
11. NJN - Earl Clark - The Nets are another team that has some major pieces in place and just need a few more filling pieces. The Nets need a big time SF who can do a number of different things for a team. Earl Clark is arguably the most versatile player in the draft and has been doing really really well in his pre-draft workouts so far. The Nets could use his rebounding and dirty work. Also, Clark has some of the best potential in the draft. He is lazy at times but if he asserts himself all season and really works on playing hard all the time, he could end up being the 3rd or 4th best player in the class if not better.
12. - CHA - Gerald Henderson - Charlotte has two solid PGs in Augustin and Felton so PG is not a need here. One big need I see in Charlotte is a very good SG for the future. Henderson has a immense amount of potential and if he improves his shot he could be very very good. CHA could use another scorer in their system.
13. - IND - Jonny Flynn - It wouldnt surprise me in IND went with BJ Mullens or even Dejuan Blair here. They need big men but they may be reaching if they were to take Mullens or Blair. With Flynn they get a possible franchise PG in the future. Jarret Jack is better suited in an off guard position and TJ Ford is very injury prone. Flynn would help right away here.
14. - PHX - Ty Lawson - I think PHX is hoping Flynn falls to them here but if hes off the board then Ty Lawson could be the pick. Nash is definitely nearing retirement or at least a drastic decline in minutes. Barbosa can play the point a little but PHX really needs to think about life after Steve Nash. Picking Lawson would be a very smart pick. He is perfect for their system and will have a few years to learn under Nash before fully taking over.
15. - DET - BJ Mullens - Mullens would be a good pick here for the Pistons. Their big men are in the bottom stages of their career and DET needs a young big man to come in and help. Mullens has a ton of potential if he could just put together more offensive moves. He was viewed by many as the top incoming freshman last year but didnt always look the part. However, he is definitely worth it here and Detroit could use him.
16. - CHI - Terrence Williams - this is a bit of a bias pick as T-Will is my favorite player in the draft and the Bulls are my favorite team but I think Williams would make sense here. They need to get rid of Gordon in exchange for a bigger SG who can do more than just score. That is Terrence Williams. With an improved shot he has the capabilities to play both SG and SF. The little things he does though is what sets him apart. He rebounds like a big man and passes like a point guard. The Bulls desperately need a player like T-Will who can do just about anything they ask of him.
17. - PHI - Jeff Teague - Philly has Andre Miller at the point right now but he is another player that is entering the latter part of his career. They need a replacement for a year or two down the road. Lou Williams is more of a SG than a PG and not the answer. Teague, however, can do it all and could end up being one of the better PGs in the league. He has an uncanny ability to score the ball and can also dish it with the best of them. Bringing in Teague off the bench would be a much needed spark for the 76ers.
18. MIN - Jrue Holiday - This is an interesting pick. A lot of people have Holiday going higher and a lot of people have him going lower. He is tough to gauge because he never played up to his potential at UCLA but still has that potential that everyone loves. He is a lockdown defender than excels more in the PG role. Much like Westbrook last year, he had to defer to the SG position as Collison was the main PG at UCLA. I think Holiday will be much more productive at the PG position and the T-Wolves need a PG improvement over Telfair.
19. ATL - Eric Maynor - The Hawks have tried taking PGs in the past few drafts but they havent panned out. They had to go get Bibby last year and that was a good pick up. But the Hawks are another team that needs to look at the future and what is after a current player. Maynor is a proven winner and he can lead a team. He wouldnt need to score a ton for the Hawks but they need someone who is going to be able to come in and manage a game for them. Maynor can do that.
20. UTH - DeJuan Blair - Utah has Boozer and Millsap who fill a similar position to Blair. However, both could be on their way out whether in trade or in free agency so Utah needs a big man here who will do the dirty work that Millsap and Boozer have always done for them. Blair is as tough as they come and will battle every night just like we are all seeing from teams in the NBA Playoffs right now.
21. NOH - James Johnson - New Orleans needs a SF who can do some different things. They have Butler and Posey who can shoot the ball but Johnson is a hard nosed player who will work for his points. He reminds me of Josh Howard. Just a hard nosed player who is going to do what ever he can to help his team win. That is the type of players that the Hornets are looking for here.
22. DAL - Patrick Mills - Jason Kidd will only be in Dallas a few more years and Barea is not a sufficient replacement. Patty Mills could be one of the sleepers in the draft. He would fit in very well in Dallas's system and could be trained by Kidd to take over once Kidd calls it quits.
23. SAC - Chase Budinger - Many people have Budinger way off the board by now but I have just been very unimpressed with him. He has off the charts jumping ability and very good form on his shot. However, the next time he guards someone will be his first. He plays no defense at all. Louisville absolutely torched Arizona and Budinger frequently got beat. Sacramento needs anything at this point though and the long term potential is definitely there to make Budinger a worthy pick here.
24. POR - Sam Young - There really isnt a need on Portlands team. Experience is about all they need. Therefore, here is Sam Young who played four years at Pittsburgh and has a great amount of experience. He may be near his peak performance wise but he is a smart player who would definitely help Portland. He could be an ideal 6th or 7th man for them.
25. OKC - Marcus Thornton - This LSU guard can surprise a lot of people. He really turned it up near the end of the year. He is a lights out shooter with good athleticism. The SG spot is the other need for the Thunder so he could come in and create a line up in the future of Westbrook, Thornton, Durant, Green, and Thabeet.
26. CHI - Tyler Hansbrough - The Bulls desperately need inside scoring. Although I believe he will not be nearly as effective as he was in college, he has the moves and can actually post a man up and draw a foul. That is something that the bulls lacked this year. Hansbrough would give the Bulls another player who gives 100% effort and leaves it all out on the floor. He is a winner none the less and the Bulls need more of those on their team.
27. MEM - Gani Lawal - After having them take Rubio with the 2nd pick, they will be stacked at the guard positions. They have Rudy Gay at the SF position so there is no need to draft a SF. However, Lawal would be very good for them at the PF spot. He could give them quality minutes and he has the athleticism to play above the rim. He would be a very nice complementary player on Memphis.
28. MIN - Taj Gibson - This is the Wolves 3rd first round pick and I have them taking a big time SG and a playmaking PG with the first two picks. Now they can get someone who will do the dirty work and rebound and block shots. Gibson is older than most in this class so he is more mature and will be able to contribute more right away. He would be a nice complement to Kevin Love and Al Jefferson in the front court.
29. LAL - Omri Casspi - I really know very little about this man. All I know is what I have read about him on this website. I have come to the conclusion that he could be very similar to Rudy Fernandez. He would help out the Lakers in a number of ways at the SF position.
30. CLE - DaJaun Summers - Cleveland is a team that really doesn't need anything. Summers though is a shooter with athleticism and would be a solid contributer coming off the bench for the Cavs. I dont ever picture Summers being more than a role player but on the right team like Cleveland, he will only be needed to work hard and fill a need when someone gets hurt.
THANKS for reading my Mock Draft and lets talk about it and what you like and dont like about it.
Pretty good, I don't think Dejuan Blair will fall to 20 though. I think he could be picked as early as 10. I also still don't understand why Indiana would draft another PG and especially TJ Ford version 2 in Jonny Flynn.
I like your mock. I dont see any huge reaches or anyone who doesnt belong in round 1
Holiday is kinda low but thats it...good job
Check out mock draft 3.5
Pretty good mock. Mostly safe picks. Great explanations on your choices. Ellington at 10, and ahead of Henderson? I really don't see that materializing. Overall pretty nice
I hate you
Solid job, like it.
Some observations, pliz with 3 picks in the first 31, in a "PG's draft", give one to the kings, they really need one, udrih is a joke.
On the pacers, bird says he wants a banger at PF or a big PG/combo guard for the future...understand blair-lawal or evans-holliday.
Really like ur picks for the bulls and thunder in term of teams needs...bulls need depth at PF and a hustler SG(SF), T-will will be a nice complement with his athleticism and all around game, thunder need a C defensive minded with shot blocking and rebounding ability and a SG with scoring ability(they got the hustler with thabo), thunder have cap and enough youth, they could let go the 2nd pick(there's some takers).
On the blazers, same case, sam young or another, but they have enough youth, at the SF spot they need 2 upgrade not add depth, when u have outlaw-webster-batum-(roy could plays some), young doesn't fit, the only need of depth is at PF, see only lawal...i see especially a trade, a package of outlaw-rodriguez-the pick to upgrade at SF or PG.
Hornets, i don't see a SF, they have 3...all are dissapointing or declining ok, but they definitly need a SG or some depth inside( marks was the 3rd big men during the 1st round...LOL).
On the wolves, i give them a TRUE PG of today with the 18th pick(if they don't trade to get one) not a project...14-17-18th picks are PG's picks...in order flynn-lawson-maynor, teague to the hawks.
10th pick for ellington is too high(from 17 to 28 i think), blair could be a lotto pick in term of teams needs(10 to 13).
Earl Clark is nowhere near lazy. As a Louisville fan I watched him for 3 years. He worked as hard as anybody and was the only player that showed up in our elite 8 loss. This is a kid that I think is maybe at about 50% of how good he will be. He improved greatly every year. People think he is lazy because he got winded at times but we pressed all game and he was asked to cover the entire floor at 6'10". No power forward in the country was asked to do as much as Earl. Score inside, score outside, set teammates up for shots, rebound outside your zone, play PHENOMENAL defense, be a leader etc... The guy did it all for us and so did T-Will
and as a fellow Bulls fan I too hope that they can get T-WIll. I would still like to keep Gordon though as Williams just isn't a scorer and probably never will be. But he is an elite athlete, defensive player, rebounder, and playmaker.
First let me say that I am arguably the biggest University of Louisville fan on the planet. I was at that elite 8 loss and it still stings today. Earl Clark and T-Will were my two favorite players from last years team and I even was so obsessive that I have a personalized Earl Clark hat that I wear all the time. Both my parents attended U of L and my older brother is at U of L right now. I watched literally every game last season and Earl was very important. He is arguably a top 5 cardinal of all time for me but just because of that doesnt mean I dont see things he needs to improve on. Lazy may not have been the best word but I mean that he just doesnt focus the entire time he is playing. If you dont agree with that then look at the end of the Kentucky game this year where he almost single handedly threw the game away. He makes stupid plays sometimes without focusing on what to do. I agree with just about everything you said tho. There may not be another player in the class can do everything that Clark can do but the constant knock on his game has been his "laziness" or just lack of paying attention. He turned the ball over frequently last year. I love E5 though and he will always be one of my favorite Cardinals. Im praying he develops into a superstar because ive been waiting for a while for Louisville to have another big time NBA player.
And to everyone else who posted Ill try to hit some of the points
I agree Dejaun Blair could go higher but I just am not sure if he is top 10-12 worthy. He reminds me of a Sheldon Williams type player. Sheldon went #5 in the draft and ive never seen his face since.
TJ Ford is very injury prone and theres really no way to argue that. You need stability at the point guard position and drafting Flynn will give them stability for years to come.
I agree that Jrue Holiday could go much higher. When I update my mock draft I will likely have Holiday in the top 12.
I think Ellington will be a better pro than Henderson and that is why I have him ahead of Gerald. Wayne can score the ball with the best of them and has the purest shot outside of Stephen Curry in the draft.
Yes I will agree that he at times would lose focus or panic and then he would get down on himself. He needs to gain maturity but he is young. But I would never call him lazy. Rick Pitino could tell you how hard he works. His buddy Derrick Caracter was the lazy one.
I think Earl is about the most under-appreciated player at Louisville in a long time. Never seen such a great player get trashed so much.
In no way what so ever am I trashing him. I posted above that he is one of my top 5 favorite Cards of all time. But just because a player is my favorite doesnt mean I cant see weaknesses in his game. I also posted above that lazy wasnt necessarily the best word to be used but he definitely wasnt always there in some games. However, I think we will realize how much he did for us next year and everyone will appreciate what he did for us as much as I do.