Published on June 28th, 2012 | by Bryant West, Columnist0
2012 NBA Draft Mock #8: Draft Day Extravaganza
Today’s the day… Finally! Draft Day is always like Christmas, expect with even less certainty because your wish list to Santa may not be your team’s wish list. What’s that, little Timmy? You wanted the Warriors to get Harrison Barnes? Too bad! You get Andre Drummond instead!
The ultimate culmination for NBA fans and College Basketball fans alike, and 2012 is turning out to be one of the most interesting and entertaining drafts in NBA history. Here is to hoping that today goes off without a hitch and best of luck to the big Brow and company.
Also, check out my updated Big Board for complete player rankings.
1. New Orleans Hornets (21-45): PF/C Anthony Davis, Kentucky
Stupid NBA is running the “will Anthony Davis be the number one overall pick?! Tune in and see!” I mean, come on. There is as great a chance that the Hornets will NOT pick Anthony Davis as there is of my mock being 100% correct.
2. Charlotte Bobcats (7-59): PF Thomas Robinson, Kansas
Half of me expects the Bobcats will trade down with Cleveland to No. 4, so that Cleveland can take Bradley Beal here and screw up the Wizards plans. Cleveland swaps the No. 4 pick, the No. 24 pick, and maybe spare parts to get the Bobcats to move down.
Here is the kicker. As Sam Amick/Chad Ford/every NBA reporter reported, the Wizards started fielding calls on the No. 3 pick, and the inside scoop is that they are fielding calls mainly from teams that want… Thomas Robinson. The Bobcats really want Robinson, but if they trade down to No. 4, will he be there? I doubt it. If Cleveland gets to No. 2 and takes Beal, that means Washington probably would take Robinson at No. 3 anyways.
So half of me expects the Bobcats to trade down, half of me thinks if they love Robinson that much, it won’t happen. Which leads us to…
Hit the jump for the rest of Bryant’s mock draft…
3. Washington Wizards (20-46): SG Bradley Beal, Florida
Big surprise! Washington gets the ideal backcourt mate for John Wall and the Wizards will see a significant improvement next year. A lineup of Wall/Beal/Trevor Ariza/Nene/Emeka Okafor isn’t grand, but it’s 8th seed worthy, and I think it’ll be a great team for John Wall to finally capture his full potential with.
4. Cleveland Cavaliers (21-45): SF Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Kentucky
As I said last week, SI.com’s Sam Amick, one of the best reporters out there, and last week he had the Cavaliers taking Barnes over Kidd-Gilchrist. Now, every expert, including Amick, has the Cavaliers doing the absolutely smart thing and taking Kidd-Gilchrist. That sound you hear is every Kings fan sobbing in disappointment.
Kidd-Gilchrist doesn’t give the Cavs the second option scorer that Barnes does, but he’s better than Barnes at everything else.
5. Sacramento Kings (22-44): SF Harrison Barnes, North Carolina
Two things. A., I don’t buy Sacramento trading back. Really don’t. If there are two things the Kings do very well on Draft Day, it is sending out smoke screens (in 2009, everyone was CONVINCED the Kings would take Rubio, and NO ONE saw the Kings taking Jason Thompson in 2008) and drafting the correct player. (Check out this article by Jeff Goodman of CBS Sports, which ranks Geoff Petrie as the second best drafter in the NBA, behind OKC’s Sam Presti). You know what the Kings are bad at? Trading. Just look at last year…. Don’t trade the pick, Petrie!
Now would I be surprised if the Kings trade back? Not entirely, but I expect they’ll happily take either Barnes or Kidd-Gilchrist, whoever is left. They’re likely smokescreening just to raise the value and see what they can get.
6. Portland Trailblazers (From New Jersey Nets) (22-44): PG Damian Lillard, Weber State
Sticking with this one and feeling better about it as the week goes on. Lillard has all the potential to be a top ten point guard, and his scoring instincts are absent in Portland’s roster.
7. Golden State Warriors (23-43): C Andre Drummond, UConn
Most mocks now have Drummond to Golden State, and I can’t believe I’m saying this, but Drummond is a better pick for the Warriors than Dion Waiters would be. I’m not a fan at all of Drummond’s often lazy attitude, but I prefer his defensive potential over the smaller Waiters, who I see as the next Marvin Williams – couldn’t start in college? Why is he a lottery pick, then?
Meanwhile, Drummond pairs with Andrew Bogut (if he’s ever healthy) and Golden State can suddenly rebound AND defend the post! Crazy, right? Just don’t as Drummond to shoot free throws or score consistently. Or give 100% effort.
8. Toronto Raptors (23-43): SG Dion Waiters, Syracuse
Who SHOULD the Raptors pick here? If I was in the war room, I’d press for Terrence Ross, who has as much potential as Waiters (if not more, in my book) and is a far better shooter. That’s what you need next to DeMar DeRozan, not a smaller DeRozan who has to play point guard.
9. Detroit Pistons (25-41): PF John Henson, North Carolina
The Pistons could go Meyers Leonard here, but I’m sticking to my guns and keeping John Henson where he belongs. If he bulks up, he’ll be a mini Anthony Davis.
10. New Orleans Hornets (From Minnesota Timberwolves) (26-40): SF Perry Jones, Baylor
I still expect the Hornets will trade this pick, but unlike every other expert I don’t see them taking Duke’s Austin Rivers. Why take a shoot first SG when you already have the much better Eric Gordon?
If they keep the pick, Jones makes a ton of sense. He’s in a place where he’s not the top option and the pressure isn’t on him like it was in Baylor.
11. Portland Trail Blazers (28-38): C Meyers Leonard, Illinois
Again, in selecting Lillard at No. 6, the Blazers bulk up in the paint at No. 11. The choice is between Leonard and Zeller, and I think the Blazers go with the better potentiated Leonard over the safer, NBA ready Zeller.
12. Houston Rockets (34-32): C Tyler Zeller, North Carolina
The deal yesterday afternoon broke as I was writing this, with Houston sending No. 14 and Samuel Dalembert to the Bucks for No. 12.
The Rockets need a C, and Zeller makes sense, although if they’ve traded this pick by the time you read this, I wouldn’t be shocked in the slightest.
13. Phoenix Suns (33-33): SG Austin Rivers. Duke
Yahoo Sports reported two weeks ago that Rivers had a draft day promise from a lottery team, and Phoenix is STILL my bet.
14. Milwaukee Bucks (31-35): PF Terrence Jones, Kentucky
Milwaukee could use a small forward, so Terrence Ross could be in play, but I think they go with a streach SF/PF instead. Jones is a very good all around player and gives Milwaukee a nice starting five with Brandon Jennings/Monta Ellis/Jones/Epke Udoh/Dalembert.
15. Philadelphia 76ers: SG Terrence Ross, Washington
The 76ers need a shooter who can hit the three, and they have two choices in Ross or Jeremy Lamb. I think they’ll go Ross, who is a better defender and just as good an athlete as Lamb.
16. Houston Rockets: SF Moe Harkless, St. John’s
Again, don’t expect Houston to keep these picks, but Harkless has been rocketing up the draft boards and could very well be a lottery pick come this afternoon.
17. Dallas Mavericks: SG Jeremy Lamb, UConn
Almost gave the Mavericks Kendall Marshall here, but Lamb is too good to pass up. I predict he’ll be the last one in the Green Room.
18. Houston Rockets: C Fab Melo, Syracuse
One last time! Houston needs a Center, and Melo has apparently been looking better in workouts then he did at Syracuse. With his athleticism and solid jumper, he’s climbing the draft boards.
19. Orlando Magic: PF Royce White, Iowa State
White over both Jared Sullinger and Arnett Moultrie? What in the world is going on?!
Orlando needs a good face to plaster everywhere once they trade Dwight Howard. White seems to have shaken off the worries about his attitude/anxiety disorders, but I still predict he’ll be nothing more than a great role player.
20. Denver Nuggets: PG Kendall Marshall, North Carolina
Not a great spot for Marshall, who won’t start in Denver when former Tar Heel Ty Lawson in there. But Denver loves team players, and Marshall is the best of the best at that.
21. Boston Celtics: PF Jared Sullinger, Ohio State
Boston snags a 2011 top 5 pick at No. 21 because of fears about Sullinger’s back. If he’s healthy and puts it together, he’d be an absolute steal at this pick, and this is coming from a Sullinger doubter.
22. Boston Celtics: PF Arnett Moultrie, Mississippi State
Back to back bigs for the Celtics, who could use a wing here but there aren’t any great ones left. Moultrie also has lottery level talent but takes a tumble as guys climb over him.
23. Atlanta Hawks: PG Tony Wroten, Washington
Someone will make the mistake of taking Wroten, and I predict it’ll be the PG needy Hawks. While they have Jeff Teague as the incumbent, he’s no long term fit. Neither is Wroten, but his potential will draw eyes.
24. Cleveland Cavaliers: SG Will Barton, Memphis
After taking Michael Kidd-Gilchrist at No. 4, the Cavaliers go with a sharpshooting guard here. Barton is a great offensive player and would fit well between the slashing Kyrie Irving and the do-everything-else Kidd-Gilchrist.
25. Memphis Grizzlies: PG Marquis Teague, Kentucky
The Grizzlies can go many ways here, but they could use a backup point and Teague is coming off a championship season in Kentucky.
26. Indiana Pacers: SF Draymond Green, Michigan State
The Pacers have brought in Green for two workouts, and his leadership will be invaluable on a Pacers squad that is a Deron Williams signing away from being a top three team in the East. Wait, they already are a top three team in the East.
27. Miami Heat: PF Andrew Nicholson, St. Bonaventure
Miami gets a bench big man who can actually score the basketball consistently.
28. Oklahoma City Thunder: SF Jeff Taylor, Vanderbilt
Oklahoma City doesn’t need any one big thing, but Taylor would give them a bench defender who can also hit the outside shot. They need some big men help more than anything, though.
29. Chicago Bulls: SG Doron Lamb, Kentucky
A sharpshooting guard to play off Derrick Rose… whenever he returns.
30. Golden State Warriors: SF Quincy Miller, Baylor
The Warriors are trying to trade Darrell Wright badly, and Miller would be a solid replacement. He may have lingering ACL problems, but he’s got good potential.