Monday, June 20, 2005

Mock Draft 2

Marvin Williams should be a slam dunk no matter where he ends up



By Paul Benedict and Anthony Peretore

With less than two weeks until the June 28th NBA Draft, Paul and I would like to present you with version 2.0 of The NBA Source Mock Draft. Rather than bang heads and fight one another to the ground, my partner and I are going to list our respective predictions for each pick. Trades will not be factored into the mock, but we will certainly mention potential deals when appropriate.

1. Milwaukee Bucks

Anthony - F Marvin Williams, North Carolina

-With Milwaukee's GM Larry Harris stating that he will draft based upon talent rather than position, you'd have to think Williams ultimately gets the nod over Bogut. This became clear after Bogut showed as much athleticism as Karl Winslow at the Chicago combine. The Bucks also think Williams is skilled enough to eventually play the 4 and take over for Joe Smith. Seems more logical than replacing Gadzuric with Bogut.

Paul - C Andrew Bogut, Utah

-Though Bogut was anything but stellar at the Chicago physicals (66th out of 70), all signs are still pointing to the Bucks leaning towards taking the big Aussie #1 overall ahead of Marvin Williams.


2. Atlanta Hawks

Anthony- C Andrew Bogut, Utah

-With something like 12 SFs and PG Tyronn Lue already on their roster, Atlanta will be better suited with Bogut than Marv, or either of the heralded PGs. While the Bucks may still use that first slot on the Utah center, Bogut's gross display in Chicago very well may cost him that honor.

Paul - SF Marvin Williams, North Carolina

-As much as Ant and I believe the Hawks would be crazy not to take Chris Paul here considering Tyronn Lue is their point guard, Atlanta has made it clear that they're going to grab Bogut or Williams here-- whichever player is not taken by Milwaukee number one.

3. Portland Trailblazers

Anthony - SG Gerald Green, Gulf Shores Academy (TX)

--No way GM John Nash takes a PG after he used his 13th pick in '04 to grab Sebastian Telfair. If you don't remember, Telfair was projected to be drafted somewhere in the 20s, but Portland pulled the shocker and took him with the last pick in the lottery. How taking Paul and basically saying "fuck Telfair" helps this team in anyway is beyond me. Green will be the pick, that is if the Blazers keep this spot. (Check out Paul's reasoning below)

Paul - PG Chris Paul, Wake Forest

-I know we said we weren't going to factor trades into this mock draft, but it's almost a foregone conclusion that Chris Paul is going to be picked third overall. Portland knows Green will almost certainly be available at #6, but I'm guessing that they swap picks with Charlotte and get the 'Cats to toss in a future #1 to make it worth their while.


Chris Paul has firmly established himself as the top point guard in this year's draft.


4. New Orleans Hornets

Anthony - PG Chris Paul, Wake Forest

-It is almost a certainty that some combination of the 3, 4, 5 and 6 picks will be shuffled, we're just not sure how. If I had to bet on it, I'd say Charlotte ends up with Paul, Utah with Deron Williams and New Orleans moves down to take Danny Granger. But if the picks somehow remain the way they are, there's no way Paul slips past 4.

Paul - PG Deron Williams, Illinois

-If New Orleans holds onto this pick (there's been rumors that they may swap with Utah), then there's no way they don't take the best point guard available, and in this particular scenario, Deron Williams would be that guy. Williams is the only top player in the draft to have worked out for the Hornets thus far and Allan Bristow would be content with drafting him. If they do trade down to 6th, Danny Granger is the pick.


5. Charlotte Bobcats

Anthony - PG Deron Williams, Illinois

-I ultimately see Deron ending up with Jerry Sloan in Utah, probably one slot higher at 4. If Charlotte mysteriously stays here at 5 however, they won't go away without their point guard of the future.

Paul - SG Gerald Green, Gulf Shores Academy (TX)

-As I stated before, I really believe Charlotte will be drafting for Portland here and assuming such is the case, the Blazers get their guy in Green. Though GM John Nash is reportedly upset with Green for not having worked out against anyone, the Blazers' need for a top flight shooting guard is too dire for them to turn him away.

6. Utah Jazz

Anthony - SF Danny Granger, New Mexico

-Granger may just turn out to be one of the more complete players in this draft. Utah will probably move up to get a point guard, and if that's the case look for New Orleans to nab the former Lobo. One scout said of Granger, "If he were at Duke, he'd be a top-five pick right now." Top-6 ain't too shabby.

Paul - PF Fran Vazquez, Spain

-The potential deal with New Orleans which would enable the Jazz to nab Deron Williams makes a lot of sense, but I'm not quite convinced that Allan Bristow is willing to pass on Williams for Granger unless the Jazz make an offer he can't refuse. I'm also bailing on any possibility that the Jazz take Raymond Felton-- he's just not a good fit for that club. So if they don't trade up and neither Williams nor Paul is available to them, look for Kevin O'Connor to add some more size and athleticism up front (and to officially place Carlos Boozer on the trading block) by drafting Fran Vazquez.



If Fran Vazquez isn't selected by Utah 6th, there's a possibility he could fall out of the lottery.


7. Toronto Raptors

Anthony - SG Antoine Wright, Texas A&M

-With Jalen's Rose's contract expiring in two years, it's time for GM Rob Babcock to find his successor. Wright proved to be one of the best college 2-guards in the country last season averaging 17.0 PPG and 6.0 RPG. With three years of collegiate ball already under his belt, 'Toine will be able to step right in and help this young Toronto team.

Paul - SF Danny Granger, New Mexico

-Granger has been climbing up the boards with some outstanding workouts and is now considered a long shot to last longer than 7th. The Raptors don't have much at the 3 as it is, so Rob Babcock will scoop up Granger if he's available.


8. New York Knicks

Anthony - PF Fran Vazquez, Spain

-Hard to imagine the first Euro won't be seen until 8, but nevertheless, New York has no choice but to go with the best remaining big. Following in the footsteps of fellow Spaniard Pau Gasol, Vazquez appears to be a relatively safe pick in comparison with fellow 4/5s like Channing Frye, Chris Taft and Charlie Villanueva. I'm not buying that Isiah has made any guarantee to Frye.

Paul - C Channing Frye, Arizona

-The Knicks held a supposed "secret" workout with Frye last week and reportedly came away sold that he was their guy with the 8th pick. The fact that Frye is now cancelling workouts with teams drafting after the Knicks is further evidence that 'Zeke' has locked him in to the 8th spot. What a shocker-- Isiah makes yet another foolish move. I'm not too keen on Frye ever becoming anything special in the NBA. The Knicks would be best off trading down, which might allow them to get rid of one of their debilitating salaries,and grabbing one of the high schoolers towards the end of the first round.


9. Golden State Warriors

Anthony - C Channing Frye, Arizona

- The Warriors' only glaring weakness at this point remains at backup center. Last year's first round pick Andres Biedrens seems better suited at the '4', making Adonal Foyle the only true center on the team. With Chris Mullin seemingly piecing together a run 'n gun type roster, Frye appears the logical choice at 9. However, I'm going to predict the Warriors trade this pick, nabbing a future 1st, and electing to work with what they currently have.

Paul - F Hakim Warrick, Syracuse

-With Frye almost certainly off the board by the time Chris Mullin and co. are on the clock, the Warriors will have to settle for the smaller, more athletic Warrick-- they might be disappointed come June 28th, but they won't be in the long run.


10. Los Angeles Lakers

Anthony - PF Sean May, North Carolina

-It will be very interesting to see what Phil Jackson does with this pick. Whatever he does will certainly provide us with a clearer picture as to what he plans on doing the rest of the offseason. I don't think he will waste the pick on Raymond Felton, but rather get a guy like Earl Watson or even Sarunas Jasikevicius to run the point. The Zen Master expects to contend immediately, and the only way to do that is to bring in proven talent. The Lakers will take May and insert him into the starting lineup alongside Lamar Odom at the '3'. Don't be surprised if LA tries to move to 3 (Portland) by including Caron Butler in a potential deal.

The Lakers can't go wrong with Felton or May


Paul - PG Raymond Felton, Lakers

-With Phil Jackson officially being named head coach, I think there is now a distinct possibility that the Lakers pass up on Felton. He's not known for his defense and has a suspect shot-- two serious concerns for a point guard playing within the Zenmaster's system. At the same time, I just don't think there is anybody else available here who fills a need and I'd be shocked if Jax were to opt for a high schooler like Martell Webster. Keep an eye on this situation-- Lakers might be a team looking to deal come draft night.

11. Orlando Magic

Anthony - G/F Martell Webster, Seattle Prep (WA)

-I think the Magic have to set their sites on an eventual replacement for Grant Hill and Webster fits the bill. Even if Hill can stay healthy for a few more seasons, he will be a nice mentor for the budding Webster.

Paul - G/F Martell Webster, Seattle Prep (WA)

-The Magic might be tempted to play it safe and draft Joey Graham here, but given the early results on Dwight Howard, I would be surprised if they passed on Martell Webster. They can feel safe knowing Webster will be the direct understudy of Grant Hill, and they might be able to use the kid right away for his impressive perimeter skills.


12. Los Angeles Clippers

Anthony - Yaroslav Korolev, Russia

-Korolev apparently got the "promise" from Elgin Baylor, and I wouldn't doubt the stupidity of the Clips' GM. Touted as one of the most complete Euros in the draft, LA takes yet another lottery chance by banking on the potential of a "young Andrei Kirilenko". Rashad McCants would be the better and safer pick, especially with Bobby Simmons testing free agency.

Paul - SG Antoine Wright, Texas A & M

-Yaroslav Korolev is staying in the draft and the Clippers are being pegged as the team that promised to take him if he's available. He will be, but so will Antoine Wright and Elgin Baylor will not let a "promise" prevent him from making the pick that suits the team's needs the most.


13. Charlotte Bobcats

Anthony - SF Joey Graham, Oklahoma St.

-Placing first overall in the Chicago combine, Graham not only alleviated any doubts about his athleticism, but also propelled himself into the lottery. Desperate for players with big game experience, Charlotte will take their chances on the former Cowboy and make him their SF of the future. Sorry Gerald Wallace.

Paul - SF Joey Graham, Oklahoma St.

-The Bobcats seem intent on grabbing a point guard and small forward with their lottery picks (that is if they keep both of them)-- Graham has firmly cemented himself as the best 3 still out there with his stellar performance at the Chicago Physicals.


14. Minnesota Timberwolves

Anthony - PG Raymond Felton, North Carolina

- I haven't seen one mock with Minnesota taking a point guard but if Felton's still around at 14, I don't think Kevin McHale will have a choice. With Sam Cassell laying a terd the size of Michael Olowokandi in the T'Wolves proverbial bed last season, Felton seems like the perfect fit to take over.

Paul - PF Ike Diogu, Arizona St.

-Diogu has been shooting up the boards as of late and Minnesota needs a low-post offensive scoring threat more than just about anybody out there.

Diogu would make a nice additon for either Minny or NJ


15. New Jersey Nets

Anthony - PF Ike Diogu, Arizona St.

- Still looking for Kenyon Martin's replacement at the 4--the Nets hope to get just that in Diogu. Ike is still on the fence about keeping his name in the draft, but my senses tell me he'll make the better decision to turn pro now rather than return to a shitty Sun Devils squad.

Paul - F Charlie Villanueva, Connecticut

-The Nets can't get their hands on Warrick so they grab local bum Villanueva. Not Rod Thorn's finest hour...


16. Toronto Raptors

Anthony - C Johan Petro, France

- Realizing that Rafael Araujo is a big time bust, Babcock will re-attempt to get his '5' of the future, this time selecting Petro. With two picks in the first round, the Raptors will gamble on the raw, 7-1, 250 lb. Euro in hopes of obtaining yet another building block for the future.

Paul - PG Jarrett Jack, Georgia Tech

- Jack is a very safe alternative in case Rafer Alston self-combusts and may even push 'Skip' for minutes as soon as next season. Babcock may decide to go big after taking Danny Granger at 7, but will be hard-pressed in passing up Jack.


17. Indiana Pacers

Anthony - SG Rashad McCants, North Carolina

- I think McCants should go a lot higher, but plenty of scouts still aren't convinced he can be a consistent scorer at the next level. On this experienced Pacer team, Rashad would not have to contribute right away, especially with Ron Artest returning to action. McCants should work himself into a complimentary role off the Pacers' bench and possibly even supplant jerk-off Stephen Jackson in the starting lineup.

Paul - G Roko Ukic, Croatia

-The Croatian has built up some serious steam over the last week and now appears to be a lock for the first round. With Marko Tomas and now Rudy Fernandez likely backing out of the draft, Ukic has a chance to move up the international ranks. And for a team like Indiana who's looking for a player they can leave overseas for a year or two, Ukic seems like an ideal fit who can eventually step in and give the Pacers a different look off the bench.


18. Boston Celtics

Anthony - PG Roko Ukic, Croatia


Next Manu?

- Ainge is working out Ukic (whom Chad Ford has labeled as the next Manu) later this week and may be tempted enough by the Euro to throw him into the Delonte West/Marcus Banks mix. Ukic may have slightly different plans: "Boston has Delonte West, but I think because of my size, we could play together in the backcourt." Ainge just may agree...

Paul - PF Andray Blatche, South Kent Prep (CT)

-Yes, the Celtics already have Al Jefferson, but Blatche is a few inches taller and can learn the ways of the NBA alongside Baby Al and help to form an imposing frontline in the foreseeable future for the Celts.


19. Memphis Grizzlies

Anthony - PF Charlie Villanueva, Connecticut

-Being from CT, I got to watch Charlie play three times a week throughout the 04-05 season. One night he'd be an absolute force, ripping down boards, dominating the paint, running the fast break, etc. The next game he'd be a no-show and shoot something like 2-9 with 4 rebounds. If his NBA career goes anything like this he'll be overseas in two seasons. But I could see him coming into Mike Frattelo's system and putting up valuable numbers in 20 mpg. They'll need another inside presence with Stro Swift departing.

Paul - PF Sean May, North Carolina

-With Stromile Swift leaving, Sean May can step in and (literally) eat some minutes off Fratello's bench. Jerry West loves experienced guys who know what it takes to win-- May won't get by him.


20. Denver Nuggets

Anthony - SG Francisco Garcia, Lousiville

- It's no secret the Nuggets need a 2-guard and while everyone seems to be sleeping on Garcia, he just may be the perfect fit for George Karl's crew. Francisco can shoot the lights out, something Denver was desperately lacking last season. Expect the Nugs to take another G/F with 22 as well.

Paul - SG Rashad McCants, North Carolina

-It's probably a bit of a stretch having McCants fall this far given his combination of talent and experience, but there's simply no way he falls any further. The Nuggets need a 2-guard who can shoot desperately and would be delighted to get their hands on McCants.


21. Phoenix Suns

Anthony - SF Ryan Gomes, Providence

-I'm not sure what this kid did last season for 20+ teams to overlook him. 21.6 PPG, 8.2 RPG, 3.2 APG, and 1.5 SPG; what else did he need to do last year for scouts to respect him? Well if the rumors are true and Jerry Colangelo does in fact give up on Shawn Marion in order to re-sign Amare and Joe Johnson, Gomes could be his eventual successor.

Paul - PF Wayne Simien, Kansas

-The Suns would love to see Arizona St. product Ike Diogu fall to them here, but they'll be happy with Simien. Though he won't ever become a starter for them, he can give them a solid scoring punch off the bench and also do some much-needed glass work.


22. Denver Nuggets

Anthony - SG C.J. Miles, Skyline H.S. (TX)

- Here's that second SG pick for the Nuggets. Let 'em duke it out Georgie!!

Miles and Melo even have the same doo

Paul - SG C.J. Miles, Skyline H.S. (TX)

-Miles has decided to stay in the draft which leads many to believe that he has received assurance from teams that he will not drop into the 2nd round. The Nuggets, with two picks, seem like an ideal landing point for the 2 guard as they can afford to bring him along slowly.


23. Sacramento Kings

Anthony - SF Ersan Ilyasova, Turkey

- Almost a clone to Peja, the Kings elect to draft their star shooter's eventual successor. With loads of potential and a deadly perimeter game, the Kings can let him develop in Europe for a couple years before bringing him over to be mentored by Stojakovic.

Paul - SF Yaroslav Korolev, Russia

-Korolev may indeed have a promise that has him being drafted much earlier, but if something were to happen and that promise were to be revoked, look for him to slide towards the bottom of the first round. Sac Town has a good history with foreign players and would be delighted to have a chance at drafting Korolev.


24. Houston Rockets

Anthony - PF Wayne Simien, Kansas

- Houston arguably got knocked from the first round due to their lack of depth at the 4. With Juwan Howard hurt, Ryan Bowen was their best option. That will all change with Simien, who was regarded as one of the best players in the country at the beginning of the '04-05 season. I have a feeling a lot of teams will end up regretting passing on the former Jayhawk.

Paul - PF Chris Taft, Pittsburgh

-And finally the Chris Taft freefall is complete. Houston would be an ideal place for Taft to end up-- Van Gundy would give him the discipline he needs and a strong head like Juwan Howard might help to bestow the right attitude on him.


If Wayne Simien can avoid the injury bug that has plagued him throughout his college career, he could end up being a steal towards the end of the first round.


25. Seattle Supersonics

Anthony - C Randolph Morris, Kentucky

- Morris didn't quite live up to his lofty expectations as a freshman with Kentucky, but scouts are still fascinated by his potential. With Jerome James testing free agent waters and Robert Swift yet again rumored to be on his way to Boston, Morris will fit in nicely.

Paul - C Johan Petro, France

-The Sonics are really hoping either Taft or Simien slips to them here, but they'll be content taking a project like Petro if he's still available. Though he won't be able to come in and contribute immediately, he gives them hope at the center position for the future.


26. Detroit Pistons

Anthony - SG Julius Hodge, N.C. State

-The one glaring weakness for the Pistons this off-season has been their lack of depth. Hodge's versatility and experience should allow him to become a fixture off the pine for Larry Brown and co.

Paul - SG Francisco Garcia, Louisville

-Garcia is a Larry Brown kind of guy-- tough, solid defensively, and makes the most out of his talent. The Pistons could really use a shooter that could spread the defense as Garcia would likely find a comfortable niche off the Pistons' bench.


27. Utah Jazz

Anthony - PF Chris Taft, Pittsburgh

Taft: This is the energy Sloan and the Jazz hope to get

- Originally, I didn't think Taft would slip this far, but then again, I thought the same thing with Jameer Nelson last season. The ex-Panther is known to have a poor work ethic and lack of desire to improve. With Carlos Boozer possibly moving this offseason, Jerry Sloan will take Taft under his wing and push him to reach his potential.

Paul - SF Ersan Ilyasova, Turkey

-The Jazz have had a lot of success with foreign players over the years and can afford to let Ilyasova stay overseas for a year or two. When he's ready, fellow Turk Mehmet Okur will help ease Ilyasova into Mormon country.


28. San Antonio Spurs

Anthony - PF Ronny Turiaf, Gonzaga

- When you're as good as San Antone, it's all about drafting depth. With a player of Turiaf's caliber still available at 28, the Spurs will have no problem rolling the dice.

Paul - C Randolph Morris, Kentucky

-The Spurs may opt to go international with this pick, but will likely decide to draft a younger big guy that can replace Tony Massenburg immediately and of whom Tim Duncan can mentor from the outset.


29. Miami Heat

Anthony - PG Jarrett Jack, Georgia Tech

- In Game 7 against Detroit, the Heat appeared lost after Damon Jones tweaked his ankle. If you don't think that's constantly bugging Ron Jeremy right now, you're nuts. Jack comes in to push out the atrocious Keyon Dooling.

Paul - PF David Lee, Florida

-Lee is crawling his way up the boards and given the Heat's success with local products (Haslem, Dooling), he may not last beyond this pick. (Note: I'm not sure which Playoffs Ant was watching-- Keyon Dooling was outstanding save Game 7).


30. New York Knicks

Anthony - C Andrew Bynum, High School

- Bynum's apparently staying in, making perhaps the worst decision of any player testing the draft waters. Why not go to UConn for two years, propel yourself into the lottery, and be guarenteed $ millions, rather than a spot on a NBA bench for the next 3 years? This is why you don't allow your brother to represent you.


Paul - G Monta Ellis, Lainier H.S. (MS)

-With two first round picks, it would make sense for the Knicks to grab a project that they can wait on with this pick. Ellis had an excellent workout for them and Isiah would be more than happy to scoop up the Mississippi prodigy.

Close, but...

Anthony - David Lee, Rudy Fernandez (pulls out), Luther Head, Nate Robinson, John Gilchrist, Marko Tomas (pulls out)

Paul - Marko Tomas (pulls out), Rudy Fernandez (pulls out), Martyans Andriuskevicius (pulls out), Tiago Splitter (pulls out), Nemanja Aleksandrov (pulls out), Andrew Bynum (pulls out), Julius Hodge, Luther Head, Ryan Gomes, Ronny Turiaf.

4 Comments:

At 8:59 PM, Blogger Shepard said...

As a Laker fan I like Anthony's opinion on #10 pick.

And I wnat to see Jaske in LA. Jasikevicius/Atkins, Kobe, Odom/May/Butler/healthy George, Mihm/healthy Divac doesn't sound like lottery again :) and when you add the Zen, you get a legitimate contender.

 
At 9:35 AM, Blogger Anthony Peretore said...

Char-
Yeah, I'm not sure why everyone is sold on Felton going to LA. They have bigger holes to fill in the front court, especially seeing that Odom was playing out of position all of last year. I think May would be a perfect fit, but eventually they will have to upgrade at the point and center if they want to contend with the San Antonios and Phoenixs of the West. Thanks for writing in.

 
At 2:49 PM, Anonymous BUHS BALLAZ said...

ant-

do you not think hakim warrick will get picked at all? whats up with that man?!?!?!

 
At 1:43 PM, Blogger Anthony Peretore said...

Yeah oops, that's why I hate these things. It's so hard to keep track of everyone. You know what would be sweet? If I could quit my job and make millions off this site. Until that becomes a reality, I'll have to write article in between accounting projects. I expect Warrick anywhere from 14-18.

 

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