Tuesday, April 20, 2010

2010 NBA Draft Mock Draft (April 20th)

Similar to ESPN's Chad Ford, I've designed a "Lottery Machine" that selects the 2010 NBA Lottery at random, based on the prescribed lottery odds of each team.  Using a program called Mathematica (Courtesy Wolfram Research), I've compiled 22 random lotteries, which I will use to complete a different mock draft each weekday from now through May 18th when the 2010 NBA Draft Lottery is held.



1)    Washington Wizards (5)- John Wall- PG (Kentucky)


Gilbert Arenas has always been more of a shoot-first point guard, and drafting Wall would allow him to move off the ball at times.  The Wizards are an interesting case at the top, because Evan Turner, or even DeMarcus Cousins could come into play here.


2)    Sacramento Kings (3)- Evan Turner- SG (Ohio State)


DeMarcus Cousins could also be considered here, but imagine the pressure a duo of Tyreke Evans and Evan Turner would put on an opposing defense.  It makes my mouth water just thinking about it.


3)    New Jersey Nets (1)- Derrick Favors- PF (Georgia Tech)


If the Nets were so unlucky as to fall past #2, Favors would likely be their pick.  Of the players at the top of the draft, he probably provides the best fit for the re-building Nets.


4)    Minnesota Timberwolves- DeMarcus Cousins- C (Kentucky)


Minnesota's most pressing need is on the perimeter, so Wesley Johnson has a chance to land here; but Cousins is a far better value, and drafting him would almost assuredly end Al Jefferson's time in the Twin Cities.


5)    Golden State Warriors- Wesley Johnson- SG (Syracuse)


The Warriors could really use some depth up front, but Johnson is too perfect of a fit for Golden State to pass up.  He is a long, rangy player who can defend multiple positions and rebound, as well as shoot from distance.


6)    Philadelphia 76ers- Greg Monroe- PF/C (Georgetown)


The 76ers need to put Elton Brand behind them any way they can.  They have some nice young pieces on their perimeter, and a physical force down low in Marresse Speights.  Monroe would be the perfect frontcourt compliment.


7)    Detroit Pistons- Cole Aldrich- C (Kansas)


Something tells me that Detroit may be the team to move up into the top three in the lottery, but if not, they'll likely grab Aldrich, who is the most polished of the big men in this class.


8)    Los Angeles Clippers- Al-Farouq Aminu- SF (Wake Forest)


Trading away Al Thornton at the deadline was a clear indicator that the Clippers are still in search of their small forward of the future.  Aminu is still raw, but he has tremendous potential and would be a very effective player in an up-tempo system.


9)    Utah Jazz (from New York)- Hassan Whiteside- C (Marshall)


Utah is one of the few teams in the draft who can afford to take a gamble on a guy like Whiteside.  They could use some depth up front, but they don't need huge production from him any time soon, which seems to be a perfect fit.


10) Indiana Pacers- Ed Davis- PF (North Carolina)


Tyler Hansbrough had some productive spurts as a rookie, but Davis has the makings of a franchise power forward.  Xavier Henry would also be a very nice fit here.


11) New Orleans Hornets- Patrick Patterson- PF (Kentucky)


Much like they did with Darren Collison last year, the Hornets will land a productive rookie with a wealth of experience at the collegiate level.  Patterson will make David West expendable just like Collison did for Chris Paul.


12) Memphis Grizzlies- Donatas Motiejunas- PF (Lithuania)


Memphis has a young core of talented players who still need to learn to play together.  They don't have any major holes, so they could take a bit of a risk at number 12, especially for a player with such great value.


13) Toronto Raptors- Ekpe Udoh- PF (Baylor)


Udoh has made some major strides in the last 12 months, and I think he would be a great fit in Toronto.  They're developing a roster of athletic, young players (DeMar DeRozan, Sonny Weems, etc.) who like to get up and down, and Udoh is no exception.  He would also add depth to a frontline that will likely soon be devoid of Chris Bosh.


14) Houston Rockets- Daniel Orton- C (Kentucky)


Orton makes it four Wildcats in the lottery, including three freshmen.  He is very raw, but has a good frame and solid defensive instincts.


15) Milwaukee Bucks- Xavier Henry- SG (Kansas)


The Bucks hit another homerun in finding a replacement for Michael Redd.  Henry is a very efficient scorer with an NBA body.  And, unlike most one-and-done guys, I expect him to have solid production as a rookie.


16) Minnesota Timberwolves- Jan Vesely- SF (Czech Republic)


Minnesota would love to pair Henry with Cousins, but Vesely makes sense here for several reasons, too.  He is a long wing player with exceptional defensive instincts, and he will allow Minnesota to wait a year or two before guaranteeing him a contract.


17) Chicago Bulls- James Anderson- SG (Oklahoma State)


I've been saying for months that Anderson is the guy that the Bulls need to draft.  They need outside shooting, and anything more that Anderson can provide is a bonus.


18) Miami Heat- Eric Bledsoe- PG (Kentucky)


Carlos Arroyo played ahead of Mario Chalmers down the stretch this season.  If that doesn't tell you that they need an upgrade at point guard, nothing will.


19) Boston Celtics- Paul George- SF (Fresno State)


The Celts hope George can become a replacement for Ray Allen when they don't re-sign him this summer.


20) San Antonio Spurs- Gordon Hayward- SF (Butler)


Hayward is a heady player who can do a little bit of everything- he's the quintessential Greg Popovich player.


21) Oklahoma City Thunder-Larry Sanders


Oklahoma City has a great, young nucleus, but they need some depth up front.  Sanders is a long, springy player with good shot-blocking instincts.


22) Portland Trail Blazers- Gani Lawal- PF (Georgia Tech)


This pick may change after the Blazers re-signed Marcus Camby today, but Greg Oden's inability to stay on the floor means they may need more depth up front.


23) Minnesota Timberwolves- Elliot Williams- SG (Memphis)


Williams is a score-first combo guard who can really get to the basket.  He would be a nice fit next to Ricky Rubio down the line.


24) Atlanta Hawks- Devin Ebanks- SF (West Virginia)


Atlanta needs depth, especially up front, and if Ebanks fills out, he could be able to check the four and the five.  Also, he and Josh Smith would be fun to watch together.


25) Memphis Grizzlies- Avery Bradley- SG (Texas)


Memphis took a risk on OJ Mayo when he came out two years ago, even though he didn't have a natural position.  Memphis won't be afraid to take a similar chance on Bradley.


26) Oklahoma City Thunder- Solomon Alabi- C (Florida State)


Miroslav Raduljica would be a good pick here too, but Alabi has a lot of potential, and great size, making him a first rounder if he enters.


27) New Jersey Nets- Stanley Robinson- SF (Connecticut)


New Jersey needs help on the wing and Robinson has elite athleticism.  He just isn't a very polished prospect at this point in his career.


28) Memphis Grizzlies- Damion James- SF (Texas)


Memphis makes it two Longhorns in a row, grabbing Damion James to add to Donatas Motiejunas and Avery Bradley.


29) Orlando Magic- Armon Johnson- PG (Nevada)


Orlando is arguably the deepest team in the league, but they could use an upgrade at backup point guard.  The position is very thin in this draft, but Johnson is by far the best available.


30) Washington Wizards- Miroslav Raduljica- C (Serbia)


After grabbing Wall, they'll take the best available big man in Raduljica.  A core of Wall, Gilbert Arenas, Al Thornton, Blatche, and Raduljica wouldn't be too bad two or three years from now.

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