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.

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