Crushed Optimists

We are twin brothers who grew up in Central Washington. This blog is devoted to the life of Seattle sports fans, as well as various other topics that we will espouse for your enjoyment. We could be called another OFFICIAL SEATTLE SEAHAWKS site, but we'll take our uneducated crack at the Mariners, Sonics, and Huskies as well. A Seattle Sports Blog? Must be the land... of crushed optimism!

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

NBA Mock(ed) Draft: Take 1

To answer:

Yes, I did notice that ESPN has the Hawks ranked #1 in their first edition of the Power Rankings.

Yes, I did see the NFC West Overview where the columnist had the gall to suggest that this was the year the Cardinals are really hyped, as opposed to last year, when most pundits managed to forget about hype in placing them firmly above the Hawks in 99.9% of their preseason predictions.

I do like clinging to the "no respect" card, so that's why I'm happy that Petey Prisco and Petey King are still around to dispense nuggets of "wisdom".

Anyways, this post started as my first go around into Chad Ford's NBA mock draft, the real version of which occurs next Wednesday. As I've said before, I'm not a huge NBA fan, and am an even less of an NBA draft fan. Still, since at least we don't have to deal with high schoolers this time around, I may actually recognize 75% of the names on the below list.

1. Toronto - Andrea Bargnani (PF)
I can't help myself. Can you honestly see any team giving millions of guaranteed dollars to a guy who looks like this? Who cuts this dude's hair?

Beyond that, I think this is what happens when there is absolutely no legitimate number one prospect in the draft. Is there honestly one player in this draft that you could see building a team around for the next ten years? I don't think so. Maybe Bargnani will be cheaper and actually enjoy living in Toronto, as long as he doesn't ever talk to Vince Carter.

2. Chicago - Tyrus Thomas (PF)
Well, Thomas showed some pretty good skills in the NCAA tournament. The guy can leap out of the building and can at least play some defense. However, his jumper is spotty at best (can you say "brick" all together now?) and definitely needs a lot of grooming. In other words, he's perfect for the Bulls.

3. Charlotte - Brandon Roy (SG)
I can't really argue with any team that chooses Brandon Roy. I think he's legitimately the best player in this draft, and the Bobcats could really use his outside athleticism, which paired with Emeka Okeafor gives them a wicked inside-out combination. Throw in Raymond Felton and Sean May and you have a team with a foundation of talent for a successful run.

4. Portland - Adam Morrison (SG/SF)
This from the "who is the person who would most drive Nate McMillan up the friggin' wall" department. Yes, Morrison can score, draw some fans, and invite opposing columnists to write that stupid Larry Bird article every other week. Yet he refuses to do the one task that Nate demands out of anyone who would get playing time... defend. I would probably go with a bigger player like LaMarcus Aldridge with this pick instead. Still, since Portland has been managed by Xenu for the past few years, don't be surprised if they go the wrong route yet again. Hey, at least Morrison doesn't beat and starve his pit bulls into fighting each other and probably won't get caught at the border going 100 mph while smoking enough weed to stun a small horse. Little victories.

5. Atlanta - Shelden Williams (PF)
At this point if I was a Sonics fan I would probably lose interest, because the two players I want in this draft (Roy and Williams) would be gone. While Ford criticizes Atlanta for this, I'm not sure why. Williams is a terrific interior defender and will help Atlanta provide some depth other than their multitude of two guards.

6. Minnesota - LaMarcus Aldridge (PF)
I'm pretty ho-hum about Aldridge. Minnesota could use him, though, to give some additional front court depth to work with KG (and possibly to replace him when that trade finally happens). He's an okay player, but I found him a little overrated. At least his shooting percentage around the basket is fairly impressive.

7. Boston - Rudy Gay (PF)
I can guarantee that whoever this pick is that Bill Simmons will whine about it. I sure know I wouldn't want Gay. I saw a ton of UConn games over the past year and I would have put Gay as the fourth/fifth best player on the court... on UConn. He doesn't take over the game, is inconsistent from the stripe, has a testy outside shot... but man, his wingspan is HUGE.

8. Houston - JJ Redick (SG)
The Rockets could definitely use a shooter, but already have one being groomed in Luther Head. Redick, to me, is just another Head. With the bust that was Stromile Swift, and some decent size still on the board, I would move in that direction. Either that or get a PG. I would definitely rather have Marcus Williams than JJ Redick, regardless of what Dick Vitale would say.

9. Golden State - Patrick O'Bryant (C)
The first "big guy on a surprise NCAA Tourney team who cashes in" pick. These stories never go well... and always seem to involve a team like Golden State. Go figure.

10. Seattle - Cedric Simmons (PF)
Ford says some people like him better than Shelden Williams. Ford's people are often wrong. I mean often. I think he just says that so we don't actually know it's his crappy opinions. I would probably trade down at this point. If not, either we do get the next best PF or (better move) the best PG in the draft, Marcus Williams, in case Luke Ridnour moves on.

11. Orlando - Ronnie Brewer (SG)
This is not a good pick. Brewer is an okay player, but a lottery pick? Are you kidding me? Randy Foye is still there, so is Rodney Carney. Either would be FAR superior to Brewer. Come on, Chad. You can do better than this.

12. New Orleans - Hilton Armstrong (C)
While I agree that NO really needs to get a center to replace Jamaal Magloire, I would be very wary about Armstrong. I think he was as much a product of the good defenders around him (and poor interior players in the Big East) than any real talent on his part. Combine that with his offensive ineffectiveness and Armstrong has "bust" written all over him. We're at 12, and already Johan Petro is far superior to the talent here... yes, this is a weak draft.

13. Philadelphia - Marcus Williams (PG)
Williams was the best player on that UConn behemoth, and the only player who ever appeared to want to win. He is an absolute steal for the 76ers at this point in the draft. I can't believe the best PG is this much worse than 12 other players.

14. Utah - Randy Foye (SG)
Again, what on earth is Ford smoking to have Foye drop all the way to the Jazz. Utah would turn backflips if this actually happened. Foye is a poor man's Brandon Roy (I wouldn't mind him for Seattle), defends, shoots, and handles the ball well. Jerry Sloan would love him.

15. New Orleans - Rodney Carney (SG)
This would help to make up for the Hilton Armstrong pick. Carney was the senior leader on that young talented Memphis team adn really impressed me this year. I would actually go so far as to call him underrated. NO would do a lot worse than Carney.

16. Chicago - Thabo Sefolosha (SF)
Ah yes, the Chad Ford international special. At least he's waited until 16 to start with them. When they start actually panning out I'll be more in favor of them. Until that point this pick is draft bait for the Bulls.

17. Indiana - Alexander Johnson (PF)
If you need a PF like Indiana may, don't go Johnson's route. Choose Josh Boone.

18. Washington - Rajon Rondo (PG)
Rondo was a huge bust at Kentucky, yet as Ford puts it, scouts might have him ranked as the best PG in the draft? This is why I hate the NBA draft. In the NFL, if you suck in college, you're not even sniffing the fifth round. In the NBA, you can suck in college, but as long as you can jump high, you're getting millions thrown at you. FAAAAAANTASTIC.

19. Sacramento - Sergio Rodriguez (PG)
Yeah. I know nothing about this guy. If he plays crappy defense and whines a lot he's a perfect fit for the Kings.

20. New York - Shawne Williams (SF)
Shawne Williams is an unproven young commodity who is fairly undersized. In other words, he's perfect for the Knicks. Let's face it, there are zero good picks for New York. They suck.

21. Phoenix - Mouhamed Saer Sene (C)
Let's see... Phoenix... unproven young center from Senegal... amazing pick from Chad Ford. Just amazing.

22. New Jersey - Kyle Lowry (PG)
This would have been a great pick for Phoenix, getting an heir apparent to Steve Nash. Instead, the Nets can get the heir apparent to Jason Kidd. Lowry would be a steal at this point.

23. New Jersey - Shannon Brown (SG)
New Jersey really needs size here. You don't need another small player on a team with Vince Carter and Richard Jefferson. I'm sure Ford could have found another foreign player to stick here. C'mon Chad, you can do it!

24. Memphis - Jordan Farmar (PG)
Any Pac-10 fan should be able to tell you that Farmar desperately needed another year to work on his game. He does pretty much nothing well. His shooting isn't great. His passing can get into the awful range, at least in any game he played UW. His defense is sub-par. All in all, I was shocked that NBA scouts gave him enough assurances to stay. Memphis will be getting a far from finished product.

25. Cleveland - Olexsiy Pecherov (PF)
I can't believe how weak this draft is. Cleveland desperately needs a real PG, and desperately needs a real big man. If Pecherov is the best they can do, LeBron is going to be an unhappy camper.

26. LA Lakers - Guillermo Diaz (SG)
This pick cracks me up. The Lakers have holes at every position... except SG, where they have this burgeoning talent named Kobe Bryant. Have you heard of him yet Chad? Hmmmm? I think LA can do slightly better than this, like some no-name from Turkey.

27. Phoenix - Quincy Douby (SG)
Douby can run, shoot, and play multiple positions. In other words, he's perfect for Phoenix. A little bit better than a center from Senegal.

28. Dallas - Maurice Ager (SG)
Ager is a good fit for the runner-ups. He can actually shoot the ball from deep, which might help against teams like Miami who can play a sone and not allow the dribble penetration.

29. New York - Josh Boone (C)
I liked Boone, thought he was better than Hilton Armstrong. Paired with Channing Frye he could become a nice talent for the Knicks. Of course, the moment he becomes useful Isaiah Thomas will probably trade him away for an overpaid small forward. Just my thought.

30. Portland - Joel Freeland (C)
This is classic Ford, "The Blazers don't need more rookies, so don't be shocked if they take a flier on a kid who's still several years away. Freeland has been playing basketball for only three years, but he showed well enough in the Reebok Eurocamp for a team to take a chance on him with the last pick of the first round." You have to be kidding me. The Blazers were awful last year and need talent wherever they can find it. So instead of going for a kid who has proved himself in college they use a FIRST ROUND DRAFT PICK on someone who shows "well enough" in a freaking Eurocamp? What about Leon Power? What about PJ Tucker? Paul Davis? Dee Brown? Yeesh.

That's the first stab! I'll rip another by Friday and then have mine early next week!

posted by Gavin @ 2:27 PM  1 comments


At 4:45 PM, Anonymous Eric said...

There is one pick that will thrill Simmons, one mock I saw had Roy slipping to the Celtics, if that happens he'll do back flips, he's been on the Roy bandwagon since about 2/3rds into the college season.

But I think the odds of that are about .1%, no way Roy goes past the Blazers (if Nate has anything to say about it anyway), and likley does go to Charlotte.


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