With the NBA Finals starting on Thursday, every other team in the league has their minds on the 2013 NBA draft.
Of course, the top lottery picks are expected to produce superstars that will help turn organizations around. However, there are two rounds in the draft for a reason.
Teams will still be able to acquire quality talent during the back end of the draft. In fact, there will be players available during this time that will become immediate stars.
James Southerland, F, Syracuse
James Southerland is one of these players that will be available in the second round. If you watched any Syracuse Orange basketball this past year, you’d know that Southerland was a vital part of the team's success.
The senior had his best season under Jim Boeheim in 2013 and helped his team reach the Final Four.
Southerland will immediately help the team that drafts him because of his versatility. The forward is decently sized, measuring in at 6’8” and 215 pounds. His frame, however, doesn’t prevent Southerland from moving all around the court.
Last season, Southerland averaged more than 13 points, five rebounds and one steal per game. While playing nearly 30 minutes per game, he also attempted six three-pointers per contest, sinking almost 40 percent of them.
Southerland can hold his own in the paint defensively and help stretch opponents with his range on offense.
Deshaun Thomas, F, Ohio State
Another player poised to be a star is Ohio State’s Deshaun Thomas. He will be one of the best players in this year’s draft that probably won’t go in the first round.
When the Buckeyes needed a basket last season, they turned to Thomas to do so. The forward had a great year, averaging nearly 20 points and six boards per game while shooting 45 percent.
Over his three seasons with the Buckeyes, Thomas showed that he an elusive scorer. Although his defense can be questioned at times, Thomas is a long player who has a great outside jump shot.
Similar to Southerland, Thomas plays as a stretch forward who can hit the three-point shot. He’s a very good talent and someone that will make an immediate impact in the NBA.
Peyton Siva, G, Louisville
Peyton Siva is a fantastic point guard that led his Louisville Cardinals to an NCAA championship last year. The senior proved that he’s a fantastic leader and great facilitator with the ball.
Siva won’t be a first-round selection mainly because he is undersized. While the guard is only 6’0" tall, this doesn’t take away from his skill.
Siva put up very well-rounded numbers last season, averaging 10 points, six assists, two rebounds and two steals per game.
He isn’t a great outside shooter, but his quickness and vision allow him to penetrate defenses and distribute the ball. Some team that doesn’t need a scoring option out of its point guard will find a great late-round player in Siva.
All statistics courtesy of sports-reference.com.
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