NBA Draft 2012 Results: Dion Waiters and Players Drafted Way Too Early

Josh SchochAnalyst IIIJune 29, 2012

NEWARK, NJ - JUNE 28:  Dion Waiters of Syracuse greets NBA Commissioner David Stern (L) after he was selected number four overall by the the Cleveland Cavaliers during the first round of the 2012 NBA Draft at Prudential Center on June 28, 2012 in Newark, New Jersey. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
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Thursday night's NBA draft seemed more like a soap opera than a draft. The drama from the lottery carried over to draft night, and there were some truly head-scratching picks.

Several players were drafted way too early, and the teams who picked them easily could have traded down and still taken them. However, the teams took the safe route and drafted these guys much earlier than they should have.

Of the 60 selections on draft day, these were the ones that were way too early.

 

Royce White, Iowa State

Where He Was Taken: 16 (Houston)

Where He Should Have Gone: 20-25

Royce White's draft stock took a huge hit once it was discovered that he has a fear of flying. However, the Houston Rockets took a leap of faith and selected him with the 16th pick.

White was taken before seven-footer Tyler Zeller, who would have addressed Houston's true need for a center. He was gone before Perry Jones III or even Fab Melo were selected. Heck, even Jared Sullinger might have been a better pick.

However, White was taken just after the lottery ended.

The Rockets could have easily waited to take him with their No. 18 pick, or traded down to get him, but they took him very early.

LOUISVILLE, KY - MARCH 17:  Royce White #30 of the Iowa State Cyclones looks on dejected from the bench late in the second half against the Kentucky Wildcats during the third round of the 2012 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament at KFC YUM! Center on March 1
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

 

Miles Plumlee, Duke

Where He Was Taken: 26 (Indiana)

Where He Should Have Gone: Second Round

Duke big man Miles Plumlee never showed much in college. He was good on defense but not great and was only average on the offensive end. However, he found his way into the first round and was taken before the likes of Perry Jones III.

Plumlee impressed at the combine, but that should not have completely erased his four years of mediocre basketball with the Blue Devils.

It was nothing short of shocking to hear Plumlee's name called before so many other great players, and Indiana has taken a huge chance by drafting him in the first round.

 

Moe Harkless, St. John's

Where He Was Taken: 15 (Philadelphia)

Where He Should Have Gone: 25-30

Moe Harkless was a first round pick, but he should not have been taken with the first pick after the lottery.

NEWARK, NJ - JUNE 28:  Moe Harkless of St. John's Red Storm walks on stage after he was selected number fifteen overall by the Philadelphia 76ers during the first round of the 2012 NBA Draft at Prudential Center on June 28, 2012 in Newark, New Jersey. NOT
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The Sixers could have easily traded down if they wanted Harkless, or they could have taken North Carolina center Tyler Zeller with the No. 15 pick.

Harkless doesn't address the true need of a big man for Philly, and he certainly didn't warrant such an early pick.

This was probably the most questionable pick in the draft.

 

Dion Waiters, Syracuse

Where He Was Taken: 4 (Cleveland)

Where He Should Have Gone: 7-10

No. 4? Are you kidding me? No. 4?

Dion Waiters is a great player and will be a good shooting guard alongside Kyrie Irving for years to come. However, there was no need for Cleveland to keep the fourth pick if they knew that they wanted the Syracuse prospect.

Waiters probably wasn't going to go until the ninth or 10th pick in the draft, and yet the Cavaliers decided the pass up on big man Thomas Robinson and wing Harrison Barnes to take Waiters.

While the Cavs did miss out on SG Brad Beal out of Florida, there were better players on the board than the second-best shooting guard in the class, and this pick was definitely a reach.