Shabazz Muhammad was the MVP of the McDonald's All-American game.
So, now what?
The 2012 NBA draft has come to a close, and as exciting as it was, we need something to hold our interest. Free agency kicks off July 1st, but even that has lost a lot of luster with few big names on the open market. Alas, we can turn to the 2013 NBA draft.
While it is sure to be less deep than its predecessor this summer, next year's event will maximize intrigue because things are very much up in the air. There are highly touted freshmen who will be playing at big and small schools alike this fall. Some we caught a glimpse of in the McDonald's All-American Game earlier this year.
There are also holdovers who saw that the 2012 draft was stacked. The thinking was that holding out one more year would raise their stock in 2013. This group will be duking it out with the youngsters for the top spots in the 2013 draft.
While the Bobcats lost out on the ultimate prize of the 2012 draft, Anthony Davis, they did walk away with Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, who will be quite an integral piece of their future team. Kidd-Gilchrist figures to start at small forward for Charlotte and his game will improve the Bobcats in a variety of ways.
Unfortunately, Charlotte still has large holes to fill. There is nothing on their roster to convince me they won't finish with the worst record in the NBA once again. Luckily there may again be light at the end of the tunnel.
Should the Bobcats bottom out for another season, they figure to have the best shot at landing the No. 1 pick in 2013. If the stars align, they will be able to select Davis' replacement at Kentucky, Nerlens Noel.
Looking from a distance, the only difference between he and Davis seemingly is that one owns a tell-tale unibrow, while the other sports a hi-top fade.
Noel is another defensive stud who stands just south of 7'. He will be a shot-blocking giant for the Wildcats this coming season and will immediately be in the running to be the No. 1 pick. The Bobcats will once again be thin up front and must hope they are able to draft Noel.
James McAdoo could reunite with a former teammate.
The Suns will be entering a transition period as franchise cornerstone Steve Nash searches for employment elsewhere. The rumors are flying in terms of suitors for the two-time league MVP. With him on the way out and only Kendall Marshall making his way to Phoenix via the draft, it is hard to see the Suns finishing outside the NBA cellar.
The rest of their starting lineup is not scaring anyone, so they could very well find themselves with the No. 2 pick in the 2013 draft.
The selection of McAdoo here reunites him with his point guard at UNC. Playing with Marshall, McAdoo put up averages of six points and four rebounds while playing 15 minutes per game.
As the Suns enter their rebuilding years, he would be an exciting player to bring in. That's particularly true considering his relationship with Marshall, who figures to be Phoenix's next leader.
Shabazz Muhammad will be playing at UCLA next season.
The NBA's newest re-locaters could not have gotten more unlucky with their recent fortunes. Due to them falling out of the top three in the lottery, their first-round pick went to Portland in the Gerald Wallace deal. This left Brooklyn with no first-round selection and no new player to introduce to their new fans and stadium.
The Nets also have several free agents who will be drawing interest elsewhere. Derron Williams, Kris Humphries and Wallace may all be gone next season. This leads me to believe they will once again be duking it out in the lottery.
In Muhammad, Brooklyn will get its exciting young player to introduce to the city and make its stamp on New York. He will join MarShon Brooks and others in the new youth movement of the Nets.
Muhammad is a thrilling player to watch and has an impressive motor. His offensive game is already refined before a year of college at UCLA can improve him. He will help the Nets win games and put fans in the seats in Brooklyn.
Cody Zeller chose to stay for a second year at Indiana.
Bradley Beal was the perfect pick for the Wizards in the 2012 draft. He has the ability to start right away and slides in perfectly next to John Wall in the backcourt. Unfortunately for Washington, that will not be nearly enough to get them in playoff contention.
Their frontcourt is still incredibly thin and not very talented. They have some minor pieces, but that won't stop them from once again drafting in the top five.
In Cody Zeller, the Wizards finally get a legitimate NBA big man. Zeller scored 16 points per game on 62-percent shooting as a freshman at Indiana. At 6'11" and 230 pounds, he has an NBA-caliber body and will give the Wizards interior scoring and defense.
He will give Wall a solid pick-and-roll mate and keep defenses concerned with the painted area, which should create opportunities for Beal and the other jump shooters.
The Wizards need serious size inside and Zeller can give them that in spades.
The 76ers made for a great story in the 2012 playoffs by advancing to a Game 7 in the second round. However, they will once again be gasping for talent next season.
Top scorer Lou Williams is a free agent and could be on his way out, as is Spencer Hawes. Also, star Andre Iguodala is an attractive trading chip whose big contract is coming off the books soon.
If Philadelphia loses these players, they will be struggling for an identity once again. Their inability to score is what did them in last season and it will only get more noticeable this year.
With Hawes possibly leaving this offseason and Elton Brand a free agent next summer, the 76ers will be in serious need of height. Adams, a 7' center from New Zealand, is about to take the NCAA by storm at the University of Pittsburgh. His draft stock will be on the rise all season as he proves his ability to bang with the bodies of college basketball.
He is supremely athletic and has great hands around the rim. Philadelphia will take him and immediately regain the identity that they lost for one year.
New Orleans Hornets:
The Hornets are without a doubt a team on the rise in the NBA. However, playing in the insanely difficult Western Conference will hinder them as the young team tries to play together and forge an identity.
They will be relying heavily on two unproven rookies in Anthony Davis and Austin Rivers. With a lot of young talent not used to playing with one another, they are still a year away from competing.
The Hornets will have a very talented frontcourt if they can keep Chris Kaman to play with Davis. Should they re-sign Eric Gordon, he will be paired with Rivers and Greivas Vasquez in a solid backcourt. Where New Orleans needs help is on the wings.
Enter Tony Mitchell. He is a 6'7" forward who can run the floor, score and rebound extremely well.
As a freshman at North Texas, Mitchell averagesd15 points and 10 rebounds per game. He also managed to block three shots each night, outstanding for a player his size. Mitchell represents a player who can hold down the defensive side and wipe the glass with Davis, while also scoring in transition with those three quick guards.
The Pistons are still in the midst of a large rebuilding plan, but they drafted another major piece in Andre Drummond.
They will pair Drummond with Greg Monroe and form one of the best young frontcourts in the league. However, those two are still very young and they still have a great many holes in the backcourt. The Pistons will show more fight, but ultimately wind up in the lottery again.
The most obvious hole for the Pistons is at shooting guard. The spot has not been a strong suit for Detroit in many years. Finally parting ways with Ben Gordon was the right thing to do, but there will be very little production from that position this season.
Drafting Alex Abrines, the Spanish shooting guard with unlimited range, would be a smart move. He has NBA size at 6'5" and should see his game transition nicely into the NBA.
Portland Trail Blazers:
Portland has been one of the unluckiest franchises in sports the past few years. The Trail Blazers have been decimated by injury time and again.. Last season was no different and who knows what lies ahead.
They have big holes in the backcourt and hope Damian Lillard can fill a large one. Their depth in the frontcourt is also something of a concern. They drafted Meyers Leonard who should be a solid center in the NBA, but they may be facing some tough decisions in free agency.
Both J.J. Hickson and Nicolas Batum may be leaving, which would leave a very thin team. If both draftees aren't solid as rookies and they aren't able to bring in fresh talent through free agency, the Trailblazers could be destined again for the lottery.
The uniqueness of Gobert is very attractive and would fit well on a team like Portland. He will join a frontcourt of Leonard and LaMarcus Aldridge and give the Blazers one of the most intriguing presences in the league.
Gobert's insane wingspan of 7'9" is unlike anything I've ever seen. With that mix of power, athleticism and skill in their frontcourt, Portland could instantly become a contender again.
B.J. Young gives Utah a replacement at PG.
The Jazz did not look like a team deserving of a playoff berth last season during their Round 1 spanking at the hands of San Antonio. They were a very inconsistent team that overachieved in making it to the playoffs. They have a lot of solid pieces but never seemed to put it together all the way.
Their skilled front line of Paul Millsap and Al Jefferson should have been an asset in that series, but it just didn't happen. They have some suspect parts filling out the rest of their roster. The Jazz are a team in danger of falling from the playoffs to the middle of the lottery due to their own flaws and a strong conference.
Already a position of question, point guard becomes even more dubious after Devin Harris becomes an unrestricted free agent following next season. This opens the door for the Jazz to select the top PG prospect in B.J. Young out of Arkansas.
Young has good size for a PG at 6'3" and also boasts impressive range, shooting 41 percent from deep last season. With the Razorbacks, he scored 15 points per game as a freshman. He will have to work on his distribution this season and prove that he can dish to Utah's quality big men to earn this lottery selection.
Alex Poythress was the leading scorer for the East team.
Sacramento could surprise people and emerge next season, but I believe they are a year away. After drafting Thomas Robinson, they will have a scary front line, pairing him with DeMarcus Cousins. They will need young PG Isaiah Thomas to continue improving. But even that may not get them out of the lottery.
What the Kings are missing, especially if Tyreke Evans is moved, is a slashing wing. They have built a talented frontcourt and surrounded it with long-range bombers like Marcus Thornton. They are in need a slasher like Poythress.
Poythress will join Nerlens Noel at Kentucky, where he will showcase his NBA skills. He has tremendous upside and will thrive in transition with the young Kings.
Isaiah Austin (33) has the potential to grow more.
Without Howard, Orlando is a bizarre concoction of role players. Whether he starts the season on the team or not remains to be seen, but without him, this group is bound for the lottery.
Orlando has an embarrassing lack of height if Howard says his final goodbyes to the Magic. The Magic start Glen Davis and Ryan Anderson in a frontcourt that does not scare anyone. They need to draft height and potential, two things that describe Isaiah Austin perfectly.
Austin may be the best seven-footer available in the draft.
The Baylor commit is still growing into his body but boasts outstanding ball-handling skills for a player his size. He is supremely gifted athletically and provides the Magic with an agility that they lack in the front court.
Myck Kabongo could be the distributor the Warriors have searched for.
Many think that this could be the Warriors year to finally make a push and be a legitimate playoff team. But they have big injury risks in the starting lineup and are scarily thin all over the court.
They have proven in recent years that they are unable to sustain a season in which an integral piece goes down. There is too much risk involved with David Lee, Stephen Curry and Andrew Bogut to say they can reach the postseason next year.
Golden State has built a talented team at almost every position. However, Curry may be an issue. In addition to his injury risks, he is not a talented distributor. With players like Klay Thompson and Harrison Barnes a part of the offense, Curry can't get them the ball well enough. He is more of a shooting combo-guard than a PG and could thrive given the opportunity to play with a classic passer.
Kabongo is the best pass-first point guard in the 2013 class. He could run the point off the bench or start in a small-ball lineup.
This would allow Curry and Thompson to play more off the ball, which would benefit both players greatly. The Warriors have always been a quick fast-breaking team, but they've never had anyone to distribute on the break, whether it be Curry or Monta Ellis. Kabongo could lead that charge.
Kyle Anderson was the best player for the East team.
The Caveliers will win more games than many think next season but they are still a couple moves away from earning a playoff spot in the East. They added solid pieces in Dion Waiters and Tyler Zeller during the 2012 draft and need to hit again in 2013 to take the next step.
While the Waiters-Kyrie Irving pairing is intriguing and exciting offensively, it may lack substance. That is what a player like Anderson could provide the Cavs. Anderson is a vastly intelligent player who has the size to play point guard, shooting guard or small forward. While he is primarily known for his passing abilities, he will look to score more for UCLA this coming year.
Andre Roberson will help the Dallas front court rebounding.
The Mavericks failed to defend their NBA title and did not look too great in the process. It is clear that the peak of this team's performance has passed and it is time to move on. Dallas is losing older players to free agency and needs to get younger, particularly down low.
Shawn Marion was regularly alone on the defensive glass last season and needs help if the Mavericks are going to contend again.
Roberson is a Marion-like player with his outstanding versatility. He is a huge rebounder and shot-blocker who can help take the defensive pressure off Marion and cover for Dirk Nowitzki's flaws on that end.
As a sophomore at Colorado, Roberson averaged 11 points and 11 rebounds per game. He also blocked two shots per game and improved in ever category from his freshman year. If he can continue this improvement, he should be a lottery pick and would fit nicely in Dallas.
Patric Young has monster defensive potential.
The Bucks had a decent shot at the playoffs last season but ultimately fell short and were relegated to the lottery again. There they selected UNC's John Henson, a 6'11" power forward. He will help to shore up a thin front line.
If Ersan Ilyasova leaves in free agency, there is not a whole lot there. But I do believe that the scary backcourt tandem of Brandon Jennings and Monta Ellis is enough to sneak them into the Eastern Conference playoffs.
Henson will not be enough to fill the void left by Ilyasova and Andrew Bogut. Patric Young is a physical beast who would fit very well next to Henson. The two could work together to clean the glass and quickly start fast breaks with outlet passes.
Young's numbers from his sophomore year were fairly impressive, averaging 10 points and six boards per game on 62-percent shooting. Those numbers were in only 26 minutes per game. He figures to see more time this season as a junior and thus more time to showcase his NBA body and skills to match.
Adonis Thomas could find a home in Toronto.
The Raptors are a team that could turn things around quickly and make the playoffs in the East. With the return of star Andrea Bargnani, their scoring woes should be partially relieved. They are also still involved in the Steve Nash talks.
While the Raptors need a center, Thomas is too talented to pass up here. The Raptors will be relying heavily on Quincy Acy and probably Terrence Ross at small forward.
Adonis Thomas played limited minutes at Memphis as a freshman but should be featured more as a sophomore. His stock is going to skyrocket as the Tigers start winning once again this season.
He has more NBA skills than Acy does and should be able to fill that role nicely in Toronto. Drafting him would help the Raptors solidify their spot as a playoff team in the East.
Jeff Withey could be a great backup in Houston.
I'm not sure if this was Houston's initial plan when they acquired those three first-round draft picks, but it could work out well just the same. The Rockets took three NBA-ready players, and combining them with their already solid team should lead to a playoff birth.
The one thing they are still missing, particularly if Marcus Camby leaves in free agency or retirement, is a center. Right now, packaging those picks for a star center seems unlikely, which means Samuel Dalembert may be starting there. They will need to draft a young big man to play meaningful minutes.
Withey emerged as a legitimate player in his junior year for Kansas. He averaged nine points, six rebounds and almost four blocks per game in just 24 minutes. His playing time and numbers should increase as a senior, making him a viable candidate to start at the NBA level.
Archie Goodwin put in 14 points in the McDonald's All-American Game.
After largely missing out on the 2012 draft, Minnesota can improve its already talented young team and solidify its spot in the Western playoffs.
The Timberwolves were on the verge of a playoff spot before everything unraveled following the Ricky Rubio injury. As is, I think they are talented enough to earn a low seed in the West.
Minnesota has a decent-sized hole at shooting guard Their two main players at the position averaged a combined 12 points per game.
The Timberwolves should be thrilled that Goodwin fell this far to them at No. 18. Many think he is the best pure shooting guard in the draft. What he lacks in range, he makes up for with the ease with which he gets to the basket. He is a player of incredible grace and could do wonders with a distributor like Rubio alongside him.
Mbakwe could be the glue player New York needs.
I have to believe the Knicks can be better than a seven or eight seed in the East. With their current crop, they should be able to work their way into the middle of the playoff race next season.
They will need to figure out a few minor things in free agency, but their version of the Big Three needs to be able to carry this team better than it has.
What the Knicks lack is a versatile player who can play multiple positions off the bench and doesn't demand the ball to score. They need a "glue-guy" who can help to bond the big-name stars and the young unproven players and force them to be better than they have been. Trevor Mbakwe may be that player.
He has proven he has intense loyalty by returning for his senior season at Minnesota and has the NBA skills to make it at the next level. Last season he averaged 14 points and nine rebounds per game on 60-percent shooting.
He can play defense and offense with the elite talents in the NCAA and is unselfish as any player in the draft. The Knicks would be smart to draft a known quantity like Mbakwe.
Alex Len has NBA size, something the Clippers need for depth.
The Clippers have shown they are here to stay and will be a playoff team for the foreseeable future. They proved that in their opening-round win over Memphis. Despite missing out on most of the 2012 draft due to prior trades, they did have some effect on the night.
They acquired Lamar Odom in the trade that sent Mo Williams out of town. Odom will try to revitalize his career where he started it.
Even if Odom is his old self, the Clippers could use depth behind Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan. Alex Len is a 7'1" Ukranian player who played at Maryland last season.
As a freshman, Len played limited minutes but was productive. He averaged six points, five rebounds and two blocks per game, playing just 21 minutes.
Len is expected to improve vastly in his second year. With one season of American basketball under his belt, he will be more ready to take on his big ACC opponents and his draft stock should rise accordingly.
Ryan Harrow will be playing for the University of Kentucky this year.
The Nuggets were on the doorstep to a matchup with the Oklahoma City Thunder before falling to the Lakers in Game 7 in the playoffs. It was the first step the young team had to take on their path to continued success in the NBA. They have some free agency decisions to make concerning JaVale McGee and Andre Miller, but are in good shape for the future.
They intelligently drafted Evan Fournier, who they can stow away in Europe for another year before deciding on a plan for him. They also made a great value selection with Quincy Miller in the second round.
This is a purely speculative pick. I think a lot of teams are going to go hard after Andre Miller in free agency. The Nuggets may not want to keep him, as they may plan to hand the reigns to Ty Lawson. In that case, they could use another point guard. Harrow just completed his transfer year and will play for Kentucky next season.
Though he was marginal at N.C. State, he will have the benefit of something almost no Kentucky stars get, two years under John Calipari.
Anthony Bennett has a similar all-around game to Josh Smith.
The Hawks will once again be on the cusp of something real and falter in the playoffs. That has been their M.O. for the past few years. Perhaps if they can stay healthy and put it all together, they could make real noise in the Eastern Conference, but it never seems to pan out.
With Josh Smith entering the final year of his contract, there is the chance that the Hawks could try to move him to bring in pieces for the future. They are also facing some decisions with free agency this summer.
I don't think Josh Smith is long for the city of Atlanta. It seems to come out year after year that he wants out and a change of scenery may do him good. If he is to be moved before or during the season, the power forward spot becomes quite worrisome. Shifting Al Horford over creates a Zaza Pachulia-shaped void at center.
Anthony Bennett has the most potential of anyone in the draft to wind up a Josh Smith-like player. He is incredibly athletic and also very versatile. He may have been the most impressive player at the McDonald's All-American Game, where he produced nine points and six rebounds in just 13 minutes.
He will showcase all his skills in an uptempo game at UNLV this year. He could fit well with a point guard like Jeff Teague.
The Bulls will undoubtedly finish with a worse record than last year. But no matter what happens in the playoffs or when Derrick Rose gets back, the Bulls should be able to earn much higher than a four seed in the East.
The team struggled mightily when he went down in last year's postseason, but they are still one of the better teams in the conference and should be able to defend their way into the playoffs again.
The search for offensive proficiency outside of Rose has been well-documented. A player like Dario Saric would be able to play off Rose much more easily than some Americans. Saric has shown superb ball-handling and passing skills for a player who is 6'10". He would be a change of pace from the defensive-minded Luol Deng on the wing.
There is little versatility to the Bulls' roster, so it definitely cost them when Rose went down. Teams can;t succeed in the playoffs by merely defending. There has to be a balance, which Saric could provide with another year under his belt.
Lehigh's C.J. McCollum took the nation by storm but returns for another year of college.
No matter what the Lakers do with Pau Gasol, they should be back to their usual spot in the West. With Gasol, they are the same team they've been for the past five years. If they move him, the return they get should be more than enough to help Kobe Bryant and Andrew Bynum.
But they are still searching for the answer at point guard. Until then, they won't be able to accelerate past the top team in the West.
The Lakers do face issues this summer if Ramon Sessions moves on. They will need a point guard to handle some of the scoring load, particularly if Gasol is dealt for non-offensive pieces. While clearly not the long-term answer, I think McCollum is an intriguing prospect here.
The Lakers are an elite team and don't need an instant game-changer. They can afford to take a chance on the Lehigh product who scored 22 points per game last season as a junior. He also grabbed six boards and dished out four assists a night. McCollum posted a 30-6-6 line the night Lehigh upset Duke in the NCAA tournament.
C.J. Leslie can fill in at a variety of positions.
The Pacers are an expertly put-together team. They run like a well-oiled machine and play off each other well. They must re-sign Roy Hibbert this summer at all costs. Other than that, there is no reason to believe they won't be in the thick of things once again in the East.
Assessing the needs of a team like the Pacers is tough. There are no glaring holes. They have four guards who can play. They have three quality big men and just added Miles Plumlee in the 2012 draft. And they have a star in Danny Granger. The one thing they may lack is an explosive, above-the-rim scorer.
Leslie makes a lot of sense here because he is versatile to fill almost any hole if one should arise. He also is an amazing athlete who has an explosive offensive game. As a sophomore at N.C. State last season, he averaged 15 points and seven rebounds per game while shooting 53-percent from the floor.
Isaiah Canaan could be the backup PG the Celtics need.
Getting Kevin Garnett back definitely bumps the Celtics up in the draft order next year. With him, they have a shot to land anywhere from the second to the fifth seed in the Eastern Conference. They also will still have an elite point guard and talented, but aging scorer in Paul Pierce.
They had a questionable draft , taking two high-risk, high-reward players. If they can hit it big in free agency, the sky is the limit for Boston.
There are holes in the backcourt that need assessing. If Ray Allen does not return, there will certainly be a scoring void that neither Rajon Rondo nor Avery Bradley can fill. As a junior, Isaiah Canaan averaged 19 points per game. He also has a deep stroke that is valuable to the Celtics, shooting 46 percent from deep.
Canaan is a smaller combo-guard but has a lightning-quick game, much like Rajon Rondo. A problem arose with the offense last season whenever Rondo left the court. The Celtics lack a legitimate backup PG, particularly one with Rondo's penetration skills. Canaan can bring that to Boston in a reserve role. He expertly ran the high-octane Murray State offense and will show that again this season.
The Spurs stars are not quite done yet and the franchise has been restocking its system with youth along the way. Players like Kawhi Leonard and Tiago Splitter are part of a subtle youth movement in San Antonio.
Last season's No. 1 seed in the West will return to the playoffs unfazed by their loss to Oklahoma City.
The Spurs are fairly thin up front, especially with Boris Diaw a free agent and Splitter and DeJuan Blair joining him next summer. The Spurs need to stockpile height, even if it doesn't pay dividends next season.
Kaleb Tarczewski is a massive player in the Splitter mold. He is a legitimate seven-footer who has excellent mobility, as most foreign big men have developed. The Spurs won't need him right away. But depending on what he shows at Arizona, he could be a big help down the line.
Peyton Siva nearly took down Anthony Davis and Kentucky.
The Grizzlies seem to have an embarrassment of riches. They were actively shopping O.J. Mayo during the season and I don't think they have stopped listening to offers. Either way, Memphis is stacked at the wing position and boasts a fairly deep front line. They also just added Tony Wroten Jr. through the draft to help at shooting guard should Mayo depart.
I really like the makeup of this team. They have two seasons of playoff experience and should be ready to contend for one of the top seeds next year.
When your backup point guard is Gilbert Arenas, that is a problem. Arenas is a free agent this summer, so Mike Conley is going to need more help than Wroten Jr. can provide. Peyton Siva is a fearless point guard who could step right in and work with Conley in Memphis.
Siva was integral in Louisville's run through the Big East and NCAA tournaments. Over the course of those nine games, he averaged 11 points, six assists and four rebounds per game.
His style of play and attitude mesh well with Memphis. If he puts up similar numbers and shows continued leadership qualities, it will be hard for him to fall out of the first round.
Otto Porter will be another late first round steal for the Thunder.
Oklahoma City Thunder:
The Thunder tasted cruel championship defeat this past season, losing in the finals to Miami. Their team should remain mostly intact and should be able to beat out Memphis and San Antonio for that important No. 1 seed in the Western Conference.
After walking away with one of the steals of the 2012 NBA draft in Perry Jones III, the Thunder appear to again nab a player who could have gone much higher, Otto Porter finished his freshman season at Georgetown averaging 10 points and seven rebounds a game. If he improves as expected, with the Hoyas graduating two of their top three scorers, he could be projected much higher than No. 29.
Michael Carter-Williams is a dead-eye out of Syracuse.
With Derrick Rose's status still unknown, he 2012 NBA champions should be able to grab the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference. The Heat have the reigning MVP in LeBron James and should have a healthy Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh, who are both skipping the Olympics.
Miami has the best team in the league. Playing in the weaker conference should allow them to wrack up the most wins in the NBA.
Assuming Ray Allen turns down the minimal offer that the Heat can make him, the hunt for a consistent three-point shooter will continue. In the 2013 draft, the Heat would be wise to look at Syracuse's Michael Carter-Williams.
Carter-Williams showed little in his 10 minutes per game last season. But with Kris Joseph and Dion Waiters gone, he will be able to showcase his talents. He hit 7-of-18 threes, giving everyone a glimpse of what he could become.
LeBryan Nash is a small forward who will be playing a Oklahoma State.
Joshua Smith is a monstrous body in the paint.
Joshua Smith is a junior center for UCLA. He averaged 10 points and five rebounds per game last season.
P.J. Hairston is a shooting guard who will be a freshman at North Carolina.
Blackshear returned to Louisville for another season.
Wayne Blackshear is a sophomore forward for Louisville. He score nine points and grabbed four rebounds in the Final Four loss to Kentucky.
Trey Burke will look to improve on a solid freshman season.
Trey Burke is a sophomore guard for Michigan. He averaged 15 points per game last season.
Reggie Bullock may emerge for UNC this season.
Reggie Bullock is a junior shooting guard for North Carolina. He averaged nine points and five rebounds last season.
Phil Pressey's Mizzou were upset in 15th seeded Norfolk State.
Phil Pressey is a junior point guard from Missouri. He averaged 10 points, six assists and two steals per game last season.
Mike Moser could see his stock soar if UNLV is as good as advertised.
Mike Moser is a junior power forward at UNLV. He averaged 14 points and 10 rebounds per game last season.
Branden Dawson returned to Michigan State for another year.
Branden Dawson is a sophomore shooting guard at Michigan State. He averaged eight points and five rebounds per game last year.
Richard Howell will be a leader on a very good NC State team.
Richard Howell is a senior at N.C. State. He averaged 11 points and nine rebounds per game last season.
Mason Plumlee returns as a senior for the Blue Devils.
Mason Plumlee is a senior at Duke. He averaged 11 points and nine rebounds per game last season.
Ray McCallum could be an electric reserve scorer for the Warriors.
Ray McCallum is a junior shooting guard from Detroit. He averaged 15 points and five rebounds per game last season.
O.D. Anosike is a senior from Siena. He averaged 15 points and 13 rebounds per game last season.
Doug McDermott could score in bunches for the Mavericks.
Doug McDermott is a junior from Creighton. He averaged 23 points and eight rebounds per game last season.
August Cesar Lima is a 6'10", 225-pound forward from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Dieng will once again lead Louisville.
Gorgi Dieng is a junior center from Louisville. He averaged nine points and nine rebounds per game last season.
Deshaun Thomas will have to step up with no Jared Sullinger.
Deshaun Thomas is a junior small forward from Ohio State. He averaged 15 points per game last season.
Michael Snaer will be a junior at FSU.
Michael Snaer is a junior shooting guard for Florida State. He averaged 15 points per game last season.
Nemanja Nedovic is a 6'3" point guard from Serbia. He plays for KK Red Star Belgrade.
C.J. Wilcox could be a steal in the second round.
C.J. Wilcox is a junior shooting guard from Washington. He averaged 14 points per game last season.
Dexter Strickland will need to lead UNC.
Dexter Strickland is a senior shooting guard from North Carolina. He averaged seven points per game last season.
Lamont Jones transferred to Iona College.
Lamont Jones is a senior from Iona. He averaged 16 points per game last season.
Jamaal Franklin could score at any level.
Jamaal Franklin is a junior shooting guard at San Diego State. He averaged 17 points and seven rebounds per game last season.
Zeke Marshall is a 7'0" senior center from Akron. He averaged 10 points and five rebounds per game last season.
The Illini are Paul's team as a senior.
Brandon Paul is a senior shooting guard from Illinois. He averaged 15 points and five rebounds per game last season.
Temple's four year man could make it at the next level.
Khalif Wyatt is a senior shooting guard at Temple. He averaged 17 points per game last season.
Kenny Boynton has one legit NBA skill.
Kenny Boynton is a senior shooting guard from Florida. He averaged 16 points per game last season.
Deonte Burton needs a breakout season.
Deonte Burton is a junior shooting guard from Nevada. He averaged 14 points per game last season.
Reggie Johnson needs a big senior year in Miami.
Reggie Johnson is a senior center for Miami. He averaged 10 points and seven rebounds per game last season.
Matthew Dellavedova is a unique talent.
Matthew Dellavedova is a senior guard for Saint Mary's. He averaged 16 points and six assists per game last season.