Tuesday, February 23, 2010

2010 NBA Mock Draft (Version 16)

1)    New Jersey Nets- John Wall- PG (Kentucky)


Wall gets the nod again at the top of the draft.  He has perennial All-Star written all over him.


2)    Minnesota Timberwolves- Evan Turner- SG (Ohio State)


Turner has great size and ball-handling skills, but will need to hone his outside shooting and decision making in order to be an elite NBA player.


3)    Golden State Warriors- Derrick Favors- PF (Georgia Tech)


Favors has great athleticism and could develop into a fantastic player in the right situation.  Something tells me that Golden State may not be that situation, so look for Favors to do his best work in another team's uniform.


4)    Sacramento Kings- Donatas Motiejunas- PF (Lithuania)


The Kings need a franchise point guard badly, so a trade here seems plausible, but Motiejunas is young, versatile, and very skilled.


5)    Utah Jazz (from New York)- DeMarcus Cousins- PF (Kentucky)


Utah's lottery hopes now rest squarely on the frail shoulders of Tracy McGrady, and that has to be a good feeling.  The Knicks played horribly leading up to the deadline, and they'll likely have some chemistry issues to overcome over the final stretch.  Utah's pick could easily end up in the top five, and a talent like Cousins would be a wonderful fit next to Paul Milsap and Deron Williams.


6)    Indiana Pacers- Wesley Johnson- SG (Syracuse)


Johnson is a versatile scorer with legitimate leadership qualities.  He would look great next to Danny Granger, and be a stabilizing force on both ends for Indiana.


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


Aldrich has a great post game, but his limited athleticism will likely find him behind Cousins on draft day.  Still, he's happy at number seven, and Detroit is thrilled to add a back-to-the-basket big man who can really rebound.


8)    Washington Wizards- Xavier Henry- SG (Kansas)


The Wizards need a center or a guard to play along with Randy Foye, Al Thornton, and Andray Blatche.  Center is probably the more pressing need, but the value is better with Henry, who could turn into a very effective player at the next level.


9)    Philadelphia 76ers- Ed Davis- PF (North Carolina)


Philadelphia hopes that Jodie Meeks will answer their need for outside shooting, so they'll likely turn their attention to a big man on draft night.  Davis is likely done for the season with a broken wrist, but he still has the tools and potential of a top ten pick.


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


Aminu is a bit of a tweener, but he runs the floor well and would be a good fit in an athletic Clippers lineup, which is now devoid of a starting small forward next year after trading Al Thornton to Washington.


11) Milwaukee Bucks- Greg Monroe- PF (Georgetown)


Monroe is a polarizing prospect, much like Brandon Jennings was last year.  The Bucks take a risk again and will likely see huge reward as Monroe grows into all of his skills.


12) Houston Rockets- Solomon Alabi- C (Florida State)


Alabi needs some seasoning, but could develop into a very nice player down the line.  His size and surprising shooting touch will allow him to spell Yao Ming right out of the gate.


13) Memphis Grizzlies- Willie Warren- PG (Oklahoma)


Memphis would be a good fit for Stanley Robinson as well, but the addition of Ronnie Brewer gives them some flexibility on the perimeter.  Behind Mike Conley Jr., however, they are very thin.


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


Again, Stanley Robinson would be a nice fit here, but Patterson is a much safer bet and New Orleans could use some depth up front.


15) Minnesota Timberwolves (from Charlotte)- Avery Bradley- SG (Texas)


Minnesota needs help on the perimeter, and while a small forward would be a better fit, Bradley has too much talent and upside to pass up at number 15.  Stanley Robinson and Jan Vesely are possibilities as well.


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


Anderson dropped 31 points and 12 rebounds (including 5-for-8 from 3-point range) in an upset win over Baylor on Saturday.  He is the best pure shooter in this class, and has been working hard to develop the rest of his game, as well.


17) Miami Heat- Hassan Whiteside- PF (Marshall)


Whiteside's athleticism and potential are intriguing, but he definitely has bust potential also.  I would be surprised to see him find a position in the lottery with the depth at power forward in this class, but he's worth a shot at number 17.


18) Portland Trail Blazers- Stanley Robinson- SF (Connecticut)


Portland needs an infusion of youth and energy, and Robinson has those in spades.  He is hands-down the best athlete in the class and his basketball IQ is vastly underrated.


19) Miami Heat (from Toronto)- Lance Stephenson- SG (Cincinnati)


Stephenson has huge potential and would benefit from playing with a consummate professional like Dwyane Wade.  He also has good size and length, giving Miami flexibility on their perimeter.


20) Oklahoma City Thunder (from Phoenix) - Jan Vesely- SF (Czech Republic)


Vesely is a very promising prospect.  He is only 19-years old, but is already showing an affinity for defense and a nice outside jump shot.  Oklahoma City has 12 players under contract for next year, plus two first round picks, and adequate cap space, so drafting an international prospect makes a lot of sense here.


21) San Antonio Spurs- Damion James- SF (Texas)


James is a great rebounder with a very smooth offensive game.  He will likely be a career reserve, but a very productive one.


22) Oklahoma City Thunder- Larry Sanders- PF (Virginia Commonwealth)


Sanders needs to put on weight and refine his offensive game to stick at the next level, but he has great shot-blocking instincts, which is exactly what the Thunder could use.


23) New Jersey Nets (from Dallas)- Jordan Hamilton- SF (Texas)


Hamilton has a long, lean frame, similar to former Longhorn Kevin Durant.  He should be able to play multiple positions in the NBA and could develop into a deadly scorer.


24) Atlanta Hawks- Gani Lawal- PF (Georgia Tech)


Lawal isn't a freak athlete or a natural shot blocker, but he's a ferocious rebounder with an underrated offensive arsenal.  He's a safe pick for the hometown Hawks, and will be a nice upgrade from Jason Collins and Othello Hunter.


25) Memphis Grizzlies (from Denver)- Paul George- SF (Fresno State)


George is a very talented player, who struggles with his decision-making.  He is clearly the number one option at Fresno State, but he takes way too many contested jump shots and will need to work on his maturity and basketball IQ to stick at the next level.


26) Minnesota Timberwolves (from Utah)- Dexter Pittman- C (Texas)


Pittman has a wide body and pretty good shot-blocking instincts.  He is also remarkably efficient offensively, and well worth a look at the end of the first round.


27) Cleveland Cavaliers- Jerome Jordan- C (Tulsa)


Jordan may not have the upside of Ekpe Udoh and others, but the Cavs could use a true center to go along with their roster full of power forwards (Anderson Varejao, Antawn Jamison, JJ Hickson, Leon Powe, and Darnell Jackson).


28) Boston Celtics- Devin Ebanks- SF (West Virginia)


Ebanks has fallen steadily after beginning the season as a potential top five pick.  His play has been inconsistent and uninspired, and staying at West Virginia for a third season seems like his best option, unless the Mountaineers can generate a late run in March.


29) Orlando Magic- Sheron Collins- PG (Kansas)


Collins wins out over Armon Johnson, Eric Bledsoe, and Kemba Walker as the third in a very thin class at point guard.  He has a very effective crossover, a solid jump shot, and the mentality of a leader, which should translate well at the next level.


30) Memphis Grizzlies (from LA Lakers)- Ekpe Udoh- PF (Baylor)


Udoh is a freak athlete with wonderful shot-blocking instincts.  He definitely needs some seasoning, and would benefit from being brought along slowly, but could develop nicely in the right system.

Monday, February 22, 2010

NBA Power Rankings- February 22nd


1)    LA Lakers (42-14)- (W-GSW; L-BOS) Last: 2

2)    Orlando (38-19)- (W-DET, CLE; L-DAL) Last: 3

3)    Boston (35-19)- (W-SAC, LAL, POR; L-DEN) Last: 5

4)    Cleveland (43-14)- (L-DEN, CHA, ORL) Last: 1

5)    Utah (36-19)- (W-HOU, NOH, GSW, POR) Last: 7

6)    Denver (37-19)- (W-CLE, BOS; L-WAS) Last: 6

7)    Atlanta (34-20)- (W-LAC; L-PHO, GSW) Last: 4


8)    Dallas (35-21)- (W-PHO, ORL, MIA; L-OKC) Last: 8

9)    Oklahoma City (33-21)- (W-DAL, NYK, MIN) Last: 10

10) San Antonio (31-23)- (W-IND; L-PHI, DET) Last: 9

11) Phoenix (34-23)- (W-MEM, ATL, SAC; L-DAL) Last: 12

12) Toronto (31-24)- (W-NJN, WAS; L-MEM) Last: 13

13) Portland (32-26)- (W-LAC; L-BOS, UTA) Last: 11

14) New Orleans (30-26)- (W-IND, HOU; L-UTA) Last: 15


15) Miami (29-28)- (W-PHI, NJN, MEM; L-DAL) Last: 18

16) Memphis (28-27)- (W-TOR, NJN; L-PHO, MIA) Last: 16

17) Houston (28-27)- (W-MIL; L-UTA, IND, NOH) Last: 14

18) Chicago (29-26)- (W-NYK, NYK, MIN, PHI) Last: 19

19) Charlotte (27-27)- (W-CLE; L-NJN, MIL) Last: 17

20) Milwaukee (26-28)- (W-DET, CHA; L-HOU) Last: 20


21) LA Clippers (22-33)- (W-SAC; L-POR, ATL) Last: 21

22) Philadelphia (21-34)- (W-SAS; L-MIA, CHI) Last: 22

23) Washington (19-34)- (W-MIN, DEN; L-TOR) Last: 26

24) Detroit (20-35)- (W-MIN, SAS; L-ORL, MIL) Last: 27

25) Indiana (19-36)- (W-HOU; L-SAS, NOH) Last: 25

26) New York (19-35)- (L-CHI, CHI, OKC) Last: 23

27) Sacramento (18-38)- (L-BOS, GSW, LAC, PHO) Last: 24

28) Golden State (16-39)- (W-SAC, ATL; L-LAL, UTA) Last: 28

29) Minnesota (13-44)- (L-DET, WAS, CHI, OKC) Last: 29

30) New Jersey (5-51)- (W-CHA; L-MIA, TOR, MEM) Last: 30

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

2010 NBA Mock Draft (Version 15)

1)    New Jersey Nets- John Wall- PG (Kentucky)


Wall is the hands down choice at the top.  I couldn't name a single team that would pass on him if they had the chance.


2)    Minnesota Timberwolves- Evan Turner- SG (Ohio State)


Turner has been spectacular since returning from his gruesome injury.  His size, versatility, and ball-handling ability may give Minnesota a chance to atone for trading away Brandon Roy on draft night 2006.


3)    Golden State Warriors- Derrick Favors- PF (Georgia Tech)

Favors has long been considered the top big man in this class, but his struggles as of late have DeMarcus Cousins moving into that discussion, as well as consideration at this pick.  Still, Favors' athleticism and potential are too much to pass up at #3.


4)    Detroit Pistons- DeMarcus Cousins- PF (Kentucky)


The Pistons are in position to grab a really quality player at number four.  Even in the worst case, if Favors and Cousins were off the board here, Cole Aldrich would be a wonderful consolation prize.


5)    Washington Wizards- Wesley Johnson- SG (Syracuse)


Johnson has the maturity and skill to become a leader for a team in the midst of transition.  He also fills the perimeter hole left by Caron Butler.  (Which I've been predicting for months, by the way.)


6)    Indiana Pacers- Xavier Henry- SG (Kansas)


Henry has played poorly of late, but with the Jayhawks set to make a late run in March, his stock should rebound.  His athleticism and shooting touch will be a great compliment to Danny Granger on Indiana's perimeter.


7)    Sacramento Kings- Donatas Motiejunas- PF (Lithuania)


Sacramento has expressed interest in acquiring Troy Murphy from the Pacers, but if they're unable to do so, expect them to target a stretch big man in the off-season.  If Motiejunas is available when they pick, he's a great high-upside, low-cost option.


8)    Utah Jazz (from New York)- Cole Aldrich- C (Kansas)


Al-Farouq Aminu and Greg Monroe will get looks from Utah as well, but Aldrich has the most advanced post arsenal we've seen in some time, and he would be a great fit along with Deron Williams and Paul Milsap in Utah.  (Plus, we all know the Jazz love white players!)


9)    Philadelphia 76ers- Patrick Patterson- PF (Kentucky)


The 76ers could really use an outside shooter, but it's a little early for James Anderson to come off the board, so they opt for the value pick instead.  Patterson is a terrific rebounder and underrated shooter with a great head on his shoulders.  He has a long NBA career ahead of him.


10) Los Angeles Clippers- Avery Bradley- SG (Texas)


Bradley may or may not develop the skills to run the point at the next level, but in any event, he's a tenacious defender with the ability to explode offensively at any moment.


11) Milwaukee Bucks- Greg Monroe- PF (Georgetown)


It's looking more and more like Monroe will land somewhere in the bottom half of the lottery, and the Bucks would be thrilled to grab him at number 11.  If Monroe can up his production at the next level like former Hoya Jeff Green, the Bucks will have the makings of something special with Monroe and Brandon Jennings.


12) Memphis Grizzlies- Al-Farouq Aminu- SF (Wake Forest)


Aminu has good size and athleticism, but he is considered somewhat of a tweener by some scouts.  His jump shot needs a lot of work just to be average at the NBA level, but he's a very instinctual player who should mature into a serviceable replacement for Rudy Gay.


13) New Orleans Hornets- Stanley Robinson- SF (Connecticut)


New Orleans has needs at all three frontcourt spots, but perhaps the most pressing need is at small forward.  Peja Stojakovic's best days are clearly behind him, and Julian Wright appears to be on his way out of town.  Robinson is incredibly athletic and would be a great fit beside Marcus Thornton's outside shooting ability.


14) Houston Rockets- Solomon Alabi- C (Florida State)


Florida State's 7'1" Alabi sneaks into the lottery due to his size and shooting touch.  Houston hopes he'll take some pressure off of Yao Ming's lower extremities.


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


I'm going to look like a huge idiot if the Bulls don't pick Anderson, but at this point, I'm willing to risk it.


16) Miami Heat- Ed Davis- PF (North Carolina)


Davis is still a fringe lottery pick after his (likely) season-ending wrist injury.  He has all the physical tools, but as the best player on a bad UNC team, he has 'Zach Randolph' written all over him.


17) Minnesota Timberwolves (from Charlotte)- Jan Vesely- SF (Czech Republic)


Vesely is a rare breed, as far as European prospects go.  He is still young (19-years old), and has a solid offensive game (56% shooting this season), but his real value is in his defensive ability.


18) Miami Heat (from Toronto)- Jordan Hamilton- SF (Texas)


Maybe it's just the burnt orange jersey and the lanky frame, but watching Hamilton play reminds me a bit of former Longhorn Kevin Durant.  He has a very nice jump shot and like Durant, will be able to play multiple positions at the next level.


19) Oklahoma City Thunder (from Phoenix)- Larry Sanders- PF (Virginia Commonwealth)


Sanders is lean and raw, but possesses good shot-blocking instincts and solid athleticism.  If his workouts at the pre-draft combine are up to par, he may make a bid for the late lottery.


20) Portland Trail Blazers- Hassan Whiteside- PF (Marshall)


I've said before that Whiteside should return to school for his sophomore season, but he is an absolute lock to land somewhere in the first round, with the lottery a definite possibility.  Portland could really use his length and shot-blocking ability.


21) Oklahoma City Thunder- Willie Warren- PG/SG (Oklahoma)


Oklahoma City grabs a local product in Warren, but will likely trade him.  They already have 12 players under contract next season, plus two draft picks, and enough cap room to make a play for a second-tier free agent.  Moving Warren for a future first-rounder would give Sam Presti some much needed roster flexibility.


22) San Antonio Spurs- Damion James- SF (Texas)


James is a very smooth player, who is one of the best rebounders in the college game despite his relatively meager 6'7" frame.  He should have a long career at the next level.


23) New Jersey Nets (from Dallas)- Ekpe Udoh- PF (Baylor)


Udoh, like Sanders and Whiteside is raw and very frail.  He has great instincts and athleticism, but will need a lot of seasoning to stick in the NBA.


24) Minnesota Timberwolves (from Utah)- Devin Ebanks- SF (West Virginia)


Ebanks has been unremarkable this season, at times looking like nothing more than his team's third or fourth best player.  Still, he has a lot of potential, making him well worth the risk at number 24.


25) Memphis Grizzlies (from Denver)- Lance Stephenson- SG (Cincinnati)


Stephenson has some character issues, but his game has spoken for itself this season.  He has had some bouts of inconsistency, but nothing more than one would expect from the typical freshman.


26) Boston Celtics- Luke Babbit- SF (Nevada)


Babbit is the possibly the most efficient scorer in college basketball this season, averaging 21.4 points on 53% from the field, 89% from the line, and 40% from behind the arc.


27) Atlanta Hawks- Gani Lawal- PF (Georgia Tech)


Lawal is a local product and perhaps the best rebounder in this draft class.  His offensive game is a little raw, but he should be a productive third or fourth big man off the Hawks' bench.


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


Orlando is one of the deepest teams in the league, but they really need an upgrade at point guard. Johnson has the size and vision to be a great backup for Jameer Nelson when Jason Williams hangs it up again.


29) Memphis Grizzlies (from LA Lakers)- Sheron Collins- PG (Kansas)


Jamaal Tinsley and Marcus Williams have done a nice job for the Grizzlies this year, but neither is a contributing member of a playoff team at this point.  Collins could be a very nice change of pace behind Mike Conley Jr.


30) Cleveland Cavaliers- Jerome Jordan- C (Tulsa)


Jordan has shown little improvement in his time at Tulsa, but he has been a consistent performer at both ends of the floor.  He also provides the Cavs with a true center to replace Shaquille O'Neal and Zydrunas Ilgauskas.

NBA Power Rankings- February 15th


1)    Cleveland (43-11)- (W-NJN, ORL) Last: 1

2)    LA Lakers (41-13)- (W-SAS, UTA) Last: 2

3)    Orlando (36-18)- (W-NOH, CHI; L-CLE) Last: 4

4)    Atlanta (33-18)- (W-MEM; L-MIA) Last: 3

5)    Boston (32-18)- (L-NOH) Last: 5

6)    Denver (35-18)- (W-DAL; L-SAS) Last: 6


7)    Utah (32-19)- (W-LAC; L-LAL) Last: 7

8)    Dallas (32-20)- (W-GSW; L-DEN) Last: 8

9)    San Antonio (30-21)- (W-DEN; L-LAL) Last: 9

10) Oklahoma City (30-21)- (W-POR) Last: 11

11) Portland (31-24)- (W-PHO; L-OKC) Last: 12

12) Phoenix (31-22)- (L-POR) Last: 10


13) Toronto (29-23)- (W-PHI) Last: 14

14) Houston (27-24)- (L-MIA) Last: 13

15) New Orleans (28-25)- (W-BOS; L-ORL) Last: 16

16) Memphis (26-25)- (L-ATL) Last: 15


17) Charlotte (26-25)- (W-WAS, MIN) Last: 19

18) Miami (26-27)- (W-HOU, ATL) Last: 20

19) Chicago (25-26)- (W-IND; L-ORL) Last: 18

20) Milwaukee (24-27)- (W-NJN; L-DET) Last: 17


21) LA Clippers (21-31)- (L-UTA, GSW) Last: 21

22) Philadelphia (20-32)- (W-MIN; L-TOR) Last: 22

23) New York (19-32)- (L-SAC) Last: 23

24) Sacramento (18-34)- (W-NYK, DET) Last: 27

25) Indiana (18-34)- (L-CHI) Last: 24

26) Washington (17-33)- (L-CHA) Last: 25

27) Detroit (18-33)- (W-MIL; L-SAC) Last: 26

28) Golden State (14-37)- (W-LAC; L-DAL) Last: 29

29) Minnesota (13-40)- (L-PHI, CHA) Last: 28

30) New Jersey (4-48)- (L-CLE, MIL) Last: 30

NBA Analytics- February 12th

The following rankings determine the most effective and most consistent players on each NBA team.  Only players appearing in 50% of their team's games are eligible.  Effectiveness is measured using the mean of the player's fantasy value, calculated by ESPN's formula [Pts + Reb + 1.4*Ast + Stl + 1.4*Blk -.7*TO + FGM + .5*TGM -.8*(FGA-FGM) + .25*FTM - .8*(FTA-FTM)] and consistency is measured by the standard deviation of the player's ESPN values divided by the mean.


Eastern Conference


Atlantic Division


Boston Celtics:

Best Player: Rajon Rondo-34.06

Most Consistent Player: Rajon Rondo-.29

Most Inconsistent Player: Brian Scalabrine-1.36


New Jersey Nets:

Best Player: Brook Lopez-35.30

Most Consistent Player: Devin Harris-.32 (30 of 52 games)

Most Inconsistent Player: Trenton Hassell-.86


New York Knicks:

Best Player: David Lee-39.40

Most Consistent Player: Lee-.31

Most Inconsistent Player: Toney Douglas-1.00


Philadelphia 76ers:

Best Player: Andre Iguodala-33.02

Most Consistent Player: Iguodala-.30

Most Inconsistent Player: Jason Kapono-1.36


Toronto Raptors:

Best Player: Chris Bosh-42.22

Most Consistent Player: Bosh-.28

Most Inconsistent Player: Rasho Nesterovic-.94


Southeast Division


Atlanta Hawks:

Best Player: Joe Johnson-34.15

Most Consistent Player: Josh Smith-.31

Most Inconsistent Player: Jeff Teague-1.25


Charlotte Bobcats:

Best Player: Gerald Wallace-34.86

Most Consistent Player: Wallace, Stephen Jackson-.39

Most Inconsistent Player: Gerald Henderson-1.52


Miami Heat:

Best Player: Dwyane Wade-42.53

Most Consistent Player: Wade-.28

Most Inconsistent Player: Daequan Cook-1.00


Orlando Magic:

Best Player: Dwight Howard-36.82

Most Consistent Player: Howard-.31

Most Inconsistent Player: Brandon Bass-.78


Washington Wizards:

(For purposes of this analysis, I'll omit Gilbert Arenas, who leads the team in PER and consistency after playing 32 of 50 team games, despite being suspended for the remainder of the 2009-2010 season)

Best Player: Antawn Jamison-32.05

Most Consistent Player: Caron Butler-.33

Most Inconsistent Player: Dominic McGuire- 1.27


Central Division


Chicago Bulls:

Best Player: Derrick Rose-31.42

Most Consistent Player: Luol Deng-.34

Most Inconsistent Player: Jannero Pargo-1.22


Cleveland Cavaliers:

Best Player: LeBron James-52.2

Most Consistent Player: James-.23

Most Inconsistent Player: Jawad Williams-1.12


Detroit Pistons:

Best Player: Rodney Stuckey-27.99

Most Consistent Player: Stuckey-.35

Most Inconsistent Player: Austin Daye-.89


Indiana Pacers:

Best Player: Danny Granger-33.6

Most Consistent Player: Granger-.36 (35 of 52 games)

Most Inconsistent Player: Luther Head-.82


Milwaukee Bucks:

Best Player: Andrew Bogut-32.55

Most Consistent Player: Bogut, Brandon Jennings-.43

Most Inconsistent Player: Jodie Meeks-1.20





Western Conference


Southwest Division


Dallas Mavericks:

Best Player: Dirk Nowitzki-39.23

Most Consistent Player: Jason Kidd-.31

Most Inconsistent Player: James Singleton-1.18


Houston Rockets:

Best Player: Aaron Brooks-28.87

Most Consistent Player: Luis Scola-.36

Most Inconsistent Player: David Andersen-.81


Memphis Grizzlies:

Best Player: Zach Randolph-36.89

Most Consistent Player: Marc Gasol-.34

Most Inconsistent Player: Marcus Williams-1.07


New Orleans Hornets:

Best Player: Chris Paul-44.14

Most Consistent Player: Paul-.27 (38 of 53 games)

Most Inconsistent Player: Darren Collison-.87


San Antonio Spurs:

Best Player: Tim Duncan-38.24

Most Consistent Player: Duncan-.28

Most Inconsistent Player: Matt Bonner-.89


Northwest Division


Denver Nuggets:

Best Players: Carmelo Anthony-42.16

Most Consistent Player: Anthony-.29

Most Inconsistent Player: Malik Allen, Joey Graham-.99


Minnesota Timberwolves:

Best Player: Al Jefferson-32.52

Most Consistent Player: Kevin Love-.28 (33 of 53 games)

Most Inconsistent Player: Sasha Pavlovic-1.16


Oklahoma City Thunder:

Best Player: Kevin Durant- 44.61

Most Consistent Player: Durant-.29

Most Inconsistent Player: Eric Maynor-.88


Portland Trial Blazers:

Best Player: Brandon Roy-36.49

Most Consistent Player: Roy-.34

Most Inconsistent Player: Dante Cunningham-.84


Utah Jazz:

Best Player: Carlos Boozer-37.36

Most Consistent Player: Deron Williams-.33

Most Inconsistent Player: Kyrylo Fesenko-1.14


Pacific Division


Golden State Warriors:

Best Player: Monta Ellis-38.81

Most Consistent Player: Ellis-.35

Most Inconsistent Player: Chris Hunter-1.28


Los Angeles Clippers:

Best Player: Chris Kaman-33.06

Most Consistent Player: Kaman-.32

Most Inconsistent Player: Steve Novak-1.81


Los Angeles Lakers:

Best Player: Kobe Bryant-41.57

Most Consistent Player: Pau Gasol-.33 (37 of 54 games)

Most Inconsistent Player: DJ Mbenga-1.44


Phoenix Suns:

Best Player: Steve Nash-38.44

Most Consistent Player: Nash-.27

Most Inconsistent Player: Earl Clark-1.36


Sacramento Kings:

Best Player: Tyreke Evans-33.30

Most Consistent Player: Evans-.36

Most Inconsistent Player: Ime Udoka-1.03

Thursday, February 11, 2010

2010 NBA Mock Draft (Version 14)

1)    New Jersey Nets- John Wall- PG (Kentucky)


Wall may be hitting the proverbial freshman wall (no pun intended), but he's still undeniably the best talent in this draft class.  This is a no-brainer for the Nets.


2)    Golden State Warriors- Derrick Favors- PF (Georgia Tech)


Favors has struggled lately, but he is a great athlete with superstar potential, so he is definitely worth a look anywhere in the top five and Golden State could really use some frontcourt depth.


3)    Minnesota Timberwolves- Evan Turner- SG (Ohio State)


Turner is the most versatile player in this draft class.  He can play all three perimeter positions and is an excellent ball handler with good size.  He is also a solid athlete with a nose for the rim.  He'll have to improve his outside jump shot, but if he can, he has a chance to be special at the next level.


4)    Sacramento Kings- Cole Aldrich- C (Kansas)


Aldrich doesn't have the superstar potential that a GM would like to find in the top five, but he's a known commodity who should help from day one.  Spencer Hawes has been wildly erratic this season, and Aldrich would provide a stabilizing force down low for an improving franchise.


5)    Detroit Pistons- Ed Davis- PF (North Carolina)


Detroit will likely be looking at a fringe top-five pick, and they could really use a back-to-the-basket big man.  They'll have a tough choice of a group including Aldrich, Davis, and DeMarcus Cousins.  Aldrich probably makes the best fit, but with him gone, the Pistons will target Davis, who has big upside, but fewer character questions than Cousins.


6)    Washington Wizards- Wesley Johnson- SG (Syracuse)


Johnson is able to play multiple positions and can have a major impact on both ends of the floor.  If his game continues to grow like it has in his first season with the Orange, he will become the type of NBA player that the Wizards can build around.


7)    Indiana Pacers- Donatas Motiejunas- PF (Lithuania)


Motiejunas projects to be a Troy Murphy-type of big man who can stretch the floor with his jump shot.  Rumors have been circulating that Murphy may be on his way out of Indiana, making Motiejunas a seamless replacement.


8)    Utah Jazz (from New York)- DeMarcus Cousins- PF (Kentucky)


Cousins has always had superstar potential, but he has showed good consistency and improved maturity recently, which should make him a top-ten lock, with a chance at cracking the top five.  Utah will likely need depth up front when Carlos Boozer's deal expires this summer, and Cousins could develop into a wonderful bargain at #8.


9)    Philadelphia 76ers- Xavier Henry- SG (Kansas)


Philadelphia could use a true point guard or a 3-point shooter capable of stretching the floor.  Henry has been very cold lately, but he's a very adept shooter with an NBA body who should be able to contribute from day one.


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


Aminu has good athleticism and rebounding ability, but some scouts question his natural position.  He shows flashes of the lateral quickness and ball skills required to play small forward, but his below average jump shot and physical style are far more reminiscent of a traditional power forward.


11) Miami Heat- Greg Monroe- PF (Georgetown)


The Heat have won just one game over the past two weeks and now find themselves staring at a spot in the lottery.  The Heat will have $44 million free this summer, but only three players under contract next year.  If Dwyane Wade leaves, absolutely anything could happen, but gambling on a player with Monroe's talent would be a great start to a big summer in South Beach.


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


New Orleans quietly had one of the best drafts in the league last year, acquiring promising young guards Darren Collison and Marcus Thornton, but they could still use some frontcourt depth.  Patterson plays like a grizzled NBA veteran.  He's a tough rebounder with a surprising jump shot and he should be a fixture as a productive role player for a long time.


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


Bradley is a bit of a tweener.  He has great size for a point guard, but has played mostly off the ball at Texas.  His skills, however, speak for themselves.  He has been a factor defensively from day one and has shown flashes of explosiveness offensively.  He's definitely worth a bit of a gamble late in the lottery.


14) Houston Rockets- Solomon Alabi- C (Florida State)


Alabi has good size and surprising touch, hinting that there might be a wealth of untapped potential remaining.  He would be a nice addition to a team looking to take pressure off of Yao Ming's aging joints.


15) Minnesota Timberwolves (from Charlotte)- Hassan Whiteside- PF (Marshall)


This is Whiteside's first inclusion in the 2010 Mock Draft, and while I think he'll probably stay at Marshall for one more season, he might be wise to capitalize on his buzz by entering the draft this year.  The power forward depth of this class may hurt his draft position, but I would be surprised to see him outside of the 12-16 range.


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


Anderson is the best shooter in this class without question, and that is the one asset the Bulls need more than any other.


17) Milwaukee Bucks- Larry Sanders- PF (Virginia Commonwealth)


Sanders needs to put on at least 30 pounds in order to be a force in the NBA, but he's very springy, similar to Tyrus Thomas.  He should be a good weak-side shot-blocker from day one.


18) Miami Heat (from Toronto)- Stanley Robinson- SF (Connecticut)


As I mentioned earlier, Miami needs a lot of help moving forward, and an all-world athlete like Robinson should fill a role in their rebuilding.


19) Portland Trail Blazers- Damion James- SF (Texas)


Portland could use frontcourt help, but the value isn't really there with this pick.  Instead, they opt for James, who could be the answer at small forward, but can also log some minutes at the other forward spot.


20) Oklahoma City Thunder (from Phoenix)- Jan Vesely- SF (Czech Republic)


Oklahoma City will likely use some or all of their $12 million in cap space to sign a big name power forward like Amare Stoudemire, David Lee, or Carlos Boozer, which would bring them to 13 players under contract plus two first-round picks.  I would expect one pick to be an international player, leaving Sam Presti with a little roster flexibility.


21) Oklahoma City Thunder- Dexter Pittman- C (Texas)


Oklahoma City brings in Kevin Durant's former teammate to sure up their front line.  Pittman is a good rebounder with great touch near the basket.


22) San Antonio Spurs- Devin Ebanks- SF (West Virginia)


Ebanks has all the physical tools, but often looks disinterested and disconnected from the action on the floor.  If his individual workouts go well, he could land much higher, but for now, I'll slot him in at #22, where Greg Popovich can teach him to play the game the right way.


23) New Jersey Nets (from Dallas)- Gani Lawal- PF (Georgia Tech)


Lawal is a phenomenal rebounder, who will take a lot of defensive pressure off of Brook Lopez.


24) Minnesota Timberwolves (from Utah)- Mario Delas- SF (Croatia)


Like many European prospects, Delas is raw, but he has averaged 10.5 points on 71% field goal shooting and 92% free throw shooting in his first two Euro League games this season.


25) Memphis Grizzlies (from Denver)- Ekpe Udoh- PF (Baylor)


Udoh is very long and has great shot-blocking instincts.  Like Larry Sanders, he needs to put on weight to be a factor in the NBA, but the Grizzlies' depth up front should protect him until he's ready.


26) Boston Celtics- Willie Warren- SG (Oklahoma)


It's hard to find a place for Willie Warren in this draft, which makes it more and more likely that he'll return to Oklahoma for his junior season.  This seemed far fetched a few weeks ago, when Warren was projected as a likely lottery pick, but his assists numbers (4.2 per game) and shooting percentages (42% from the field and 28% from 3-point range) are less than impressive.  If he does enter his name, he should expect to slide a bit, but not past the Celtics, who could use a backup point guard and a high-energy scorer off the bench.


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


Johnson has great size (6'3") and has put up steady numbers at Nevada this season.  He struggles with his outside shot (21% for the season), but gets to the basket and scores in the mid range with ease (51% overall field goal percentage).


28) Atlanta Hawks- Lance Stephenson- SG (Cincinnati)


Stephenson is a high upside prospect with questions about his character.  He is New York City's all-time leading high school scorer and had a good start to the season, but has struggled recently.  If he can return to his early season form, he should find his way into the first round.


29) Memphis Grizzlies (from LA Lakers)- Paul George- SF (Fresno State)


George is an athletic slasher with a propensity for hoisting up contested outside shots.  If he can improve his shot selection as he matures, he will make Rudy Gay expendable when his rookie contract expires next year.


30) Cleveland Cavaliers- Luke Babbit- SF (Nevada)


Babbit is the best pure shooter available (53% from the floor and 40% from distance), and he can score in bunches (21.4 per game).  He is also an underrated rebounder (9.9 per game), who could either spell LeBron or play alongside him in certain situations.