And now a mock for tomorrow’s NBA Draft. We crapped out after the lottery…those are the only interesting picks anyway
1. LA Clippers
Really a toss up here…it’s not like they already announced who they are picking. We’re going to love the anticipation, edge of your seat drama of David Stern coming to the podium for that first pick. For all of you who may have money on the draft (we don’t really know if there are Vegas odds on drafts) and you get this one wrong…just do yourself a favor and take the rest of your money, put it in a locked safe and forget the combination. That way your money will be safe.
In case you haven’t been following, the pick is more obvious than the coming year-long buildup of Shaq and LeBron joining forces against Kobe. Griffin brings hype to the hapless Clip Show, and even more inevitable disappointment and heartbreak. His demise-before-his-rise will play out in grand fashion on the only soap opera to compete with Guiding Light as longest running train wreck.
2. Memphis Grizzlies (they’re probably going to trade this pick, but predicting that is dumber than labeling Ricky Rubio as a can’t miss prospect…)
Instead of entering into Clipper-esque drama with Rubio, they decide to take the safe 7 footer, aka the most boring player in the draft. If it weren’t for the dude’s freakishly large hands (you know what that means) he would just be a skinnier Michael Olowokandi…in fact he probably still is this generations Candy Man. On the downside (yes, worse than Candy Man 2.0) Marc Gasol large, bearded mug will be confined to the bench during pre game introductions. Here’s to you finding your Spanish brethren someday Marc…
Real life comparison: The hottest girl at the bar will make you buy her too many drinks, so you just take the sure thing three seats down (and about a foot and a half taller).
3. Oklahoma City Thunder
When we found out he was, in fact the next Pete Maravich (despite their only common traits being their floppy hair, skin pigment and the occasional flashy pass) it sets our minds a flutter because at one point Jason Williams (not “good guy” Jayson) aka “White Chocolate” was also the next Pistol Pete. And the plot thickens even more when it comes to mind that the next Jason Williams was Rubio’s own Spanish national teammate Sergio Rodriguez (or as David has learned in four years of close proximity to Blazer Nation, THAT PIECE OF GARBAGE SPANISH POINT GUARD who needs both a haircut and a clue on the court). This brings to mind two questions: First, with two Pistol Petes how is the Spanish national team NOT the most entertaining team to ever step on a court and second…was Pistol Pete really ever so good as to warrant four (FOUR!) heirs apparent?!
Ben’s anger aside, this is a pretty solid pick, considering you have a position-less Westbrook at point guard and Kevin Durant craves picture perfect lob passes in the key to earn him that max contract (that probably won’t be with the Thunder).
4. Sacramento Kings
We really can’t make fun of him, because he’s just too damn solid. We’re high enough on him that we’re PISSED he won’t fall to our beloved Warriors. Our only reservation on Evans is that for some odd reason history has not been particularly kind to point guards who are 6’ 5”. There have been some greats at 6’ 4” (Kidd, Payton), one at 6’9” (Magic) and the rest are pretty much 6’3” and below. Of course there’s a good chance he won’t play point guard, and some are saying he’s still growing. Perhaps he’ll avoid becoming Marco Jaric (6’5”) Redux…though I’m sure Evans would approve of Jaric’s companion.
Can we just take a moment and remember how ridiculous Sacramento was not that long ago? The cow bells, Tyra Banks and Vlade Divac. Doug Christie’s wife, C-Webb’s kicks and the Turk backing up the Slav. Where have all the good times gone? And to think, if contemporary Hedo were on the Kings in 2002, we might have been talking dynasty in Sac Town. To put things in perspective…Beno Udrih started 72 games for the Kings this year. How the mighty have fallen.
5/6. Minnesota Timberwolves
James Harden and Stephen Curry
Even before the trade, looking at their depth chart was more painful than a post-blackout hangover (only Twolves fan remember how awful this team is). Aside from Al Jefferson and the white Wes Unseld (the Beach Boy), this team is deplorable. These picks offer scoring, entertainment and the prospect that the ball will no longer be brought up court by Kevin Ollie. They say Curry can pass and Harden can score. They also say Curry can shoot and Harden is lazy. Worse case, Curry is a shorter, much cheaper Mike Miller. Harden seems to be the draft’s biggest enigma. Nobody knows how hard he will try, nobody really knows what NBA skills he has. Either way, these two, combined with Jefferson’s healthy ACL, brings Minnesota back into the land living (if only slightly).
7. DUUUUUUUBS (Golden State Warriors)
Our boys usually draft the big man out of need, often passing on a better, smaller player. But for the first time since basketball was more an expose of players’ thighs than a spectacle of athletic talent, the opposite seems to be happening. Monta isn’t a point guard; Acie Law is not the answer. But instead, the Dubs invest in a bona fide power forward who can rebound… and maybe even post someone up. Now it may seem strange to the Warrior faithful that the team could try to play multiple bigs with Nellie as coach, but that’s how most real teams do it. Time to join the NBA.
8. New York Knicks
This is a draft for point guards. Mike D’Antoni was a point guard. His best teams were led by Nash, a great point guard. Chris Duhon (of all freaking people) lit it up for the Knicks at… guess which position. That being said, D’Antoni wants a more talented PG, and New York native Jonny Flynn fills the role to perfection. Maybe it was his ballsy play during that OT marathon against UConn but it seems like he has exactly the quality needed in a 7-seconds-or-less offense. And by quality we really just mean cockiness.
And where does every Compton raised, Southern Cal Trojan want to end up? If you said Toronto you’re…probably not even close to right. DeRozan can do his best Jordan impression trying to usurp the starting shooting guard spot from Anthony “EuroJordan” Parker (yes, that was his nickname while playing for Maccabi Tel Aviv, soak it in). Euro Jordan hasn’t quite been Air Canada, so DeRozan could be playing big minutes early on. Solid pick for a team with just about one year left to make the playoffs.
Another conundrum because Holliday played out of position in limited minutes in his one and done year at UCLA. On the other hand, Ramon Sessions is slated to start, with Luke Ridnour backing him up, which can’t be good. Bonus points to Holliday since people describe him as “tough,” “gritty,” and “defensive minded.” These just so happen to be traits that Scott Skiles falls in love with…until he demands 50 pushups. Skiles needs to save face, since he’s still starting Charlie Villanueva, whose softness rivals the most luxurious satin pillows in the Pottery Barn catalog. Then again they did just trade Richard Jefferson so Joe Alexander could start. With direction like that, they could take hometown hero (and by hero, we mean perceived leader who shoots 28% from three and 46% from the free throw line, standing at a generous 5’11”) Dominic James and we really wouldn’t be shocked.
We officially support Bill Simmons becoming their GM.
We’ve identified a major need for the Nets. They have a budding superstar in Devin Harris at point, an aging Vince Carter (we refuse to call him a star), and a nice young center in Brook Lopez. Adding a combo forward only leaves one spot: the small forward. I wonder who could fill that spot while still pleasing part owner and rapper Jay-Z? We can now add the Nets to the list of teams who are intentionally leaving a hole in their rotations to hopefully be filled by one LeBron James. Though they appear to be a dark horse in the looming LeBron sweepstakes, humor us and imagine him on the same team as Earl Clark. Devin Harris would average 15+ apg…all on dunks! Brook Lopez wouldn’t even need to rebound!
12. Charlotte (yes, they actually have a team) Bobcats
The most anonymous team in the league takes among the quietest prospects in this draft. Reports came out about how…bizarre Williams was (he literally carried a Barbie backpack in public) but coach Larry Brown (bet you didn’t remember he was their coach, huh?) has dealt with his share of strange players. More importantly, Williams is docile compared to personalities like A.I. or everyone on the Knicks during Larry’s tenure. Brown likes players he can coach, and he just might have one.
13. Indiana Pacers
John Hollinger thinks Lawson is one of the top two players in the draft. Then again, Hollinger’s system rated Michael Sweetney over Dwyane Wade coming out of college. It seems Larry Bird will stop at nothing until he has acquired every point guard that is under 6’ (watch out D.J. Augustine). Word is he’s placing call into Mugsy Bogues and Spud Webb and Tiny Archibald. Soon enough, Nellie WILL be their coach.
14. Phoenix Suns
The last time Phoenix took something from Italy, Mike D’Antoni took them to new heights in fast paced basketball and playoff choking. Also, it’s about time Nash had an actual backup, seeing as with all the minutes he has played his biological clock is ticking to the pace of an 85 year-old coal miner.
It’s too bad everyone freaked out over the fact that Jennings went to Europe and then didn’t play big minutes. If Rubio had had last year’s season in an American college, scouts would be piling on him as being too injury prone and raw. Somehow everyone is an expert on euroball when a flashy American point guard struggles on the court yet they can’t read that a floppy haired Spaniard hit only 30 percent of his shots. Really, what the hell?