NBA Draft 2012 and Players Who Shouldn't Be Ignored

Amy Streifer@AmyStreiferCorrespondent IJune 4, 2012

NBA Draft 2012 and Players Who Shouldn't Be Ignored

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    In the NBA draft there are standout players who are expected to be signed as quickly as possible, but there are also players with great skills who are shadowed in the background.

    Anthony Davis and Thomas Robinson stick out when you think about who will probably be drafted at the beginning, but which players aren't so well-known and might creep up and end up bringing high-end talent to the NBA?

    Here's a list of some players in the NBA Draft who teams should be on the look out for.

Meyers Leonard: Illinois

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    The seven-footer from Illinois should be appealing to NBA teams that need a big man. Leonard led his team and was third in the Big Ten Conference with rebounding, averaging 8.2 per game. He's also a strong blocker, averaging 1.9 per game. 

    Leonard's game isn't just about defense. He knows how to score as well. Hayes scored in double figures 21 times this season, including six 20-point games.

    He's big on his feet, has strong body control and maneuvers himself well on the court. 

    Leonard should be drafted high and will most likely end up on a team that is lacking in the "big man" department.

Tu Holloway: Xavier

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    Tu Holloway knows what it feels like to be a winner, and he will most likely bring that enthusiasm with him to whichever NBA team is lucky enough to land him. Holloway was his team's scoring leader at Xavier with 17.5 points per game. 

    Holloway is a tough athlete and he's the type of player that doesn't mind having the ball in his hands when it matters the most. He'll take tough shots and he transitions well.

    With Holloway, Xavier won 100 games in four seasons and they made four NCAA tournament appearances. In the draft Holloway should be viewed as one of the top point guards available, and a team will no doubt scoop him up.

Drew Gordon: New Mexico

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    The power forward from New Mexico shouldn't go under the radar during the 2012-2013 NBA Draft.

    After a successful surgery in 2012 to repair a torn meniscus, Gordon went on to finish eighth in rebounding for his career at UNM and second in double-doubles. He averaged 13.7 PPG and he shows true potential for a 21-year-old coming out of college. 

    Gordon plays with intensity and he has good size at 6'9, 245 lbs. 

    In Gordon's first season, he was named Mountain West Conference Newcomer of the Year after he tallied 18.3 points, 14.8 rebounds with 52.7% shooting. 

    Gordon will bring talent to the NBA and shouldn't go overlooked.

Renardo Sidney: Mississippi State

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    The NBA Draft got even bigger when Mississippi State junior forward Renardo Sidney announced he would skip his senior season and accept entrance into the 2012 NBA Draft.

    At 6-foot-10 and 300 lbs, Sidney will no doubt be an extreme presence on any NBA team. He averaged 11.5 points and 6.1 rebounds during his stint at Mississippi State. He scored six double-doubles in his career and scored in double-digits 29 times.

    The big man once had a publicized fight with a teammate during a tournament in Hawaii, so if Sidney wants to be drafted high in the NBA Draft, he'll have to make sure that he keeps his cool, on and off the court.

Robert Sacre: Gonzaga

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    Sacre is a seven-footer that knows how to get the job done when it comes to free throws and defense. He went 80% as a free-throw shooter for Gonzaga and is frequently on the line.

    He finished his career with 1,270 points, putting him 21st on the Bulldogs list for points scored. He also ranks second in career blocks with 186.

    Starting 113 of 136 games in his college career, Sacre is tough, gritty and has size that puts him ahead of some of his teammates. He was a leader on Gonzaga and should bring that same type of energy with him to the NBA.

Scott Machado: Iona

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    Scott Machado may be one of the most overlooked players in the 2012-2013 NBA Draft. Machado doesn't stand out for his size. He's short for an NBA player at 6-foot-2, 180-pounds, but this point guard is athletically fit, talented, and Jeremy Lin-like when it comes to his skills.

    The guy is also an expert with the ball in his hands. In his career at Iona, Machado shot 11.8 points per game. In his senior year, the Queens, NY native shot 40% from the three-point line his senior year.

    Machado became only the second player in Iona's history to record 100 or more assists in his first three seasons. He's a player that likes to move the ball efficiently and he's a pass-first type of player. Machado has talent, and NBA teams should look past his small stature when they go through with their decision-making process.