Grading Washington Wizards' 2013 NBA Draft Decisions
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In a draft that was very tough to predict, Washington ended up having some of the best available players at the time fall into their lap. Now, the Wizards' young backcourt of John Wall and Bradley Beal is complemented by Porter at small forward, and they added a bench player in Rice.
After weeks of speculation, and rumors that the Wizards may even trade the pick to the Chicago Bulls for swingman Luol Deng, they stayed put in the first round and eventually made a move in the second round to move up and select Rice.
Both of these moves will make immediate improvement to the Wizards' roster and filled in holes without having to make major moves and spending cap space in free agency.
For now, there is no telling how well these picks will turn out in four or five years, but fans can still grade these picks and be optimistic about the future of Washington's basketball team.
Otto Porter (No. 3)
Leading up to draft day, it was pretty clear cut that the Wizards were going to use the No. 3 pick in the draft to take either Porter or power forward Anthony Bennett out of the University of Nevada at Las Vegas.
That decision ended up being made for Washington's general manager Ernie Grunfeld when the Cleveland Cavaliers selected Bennett with the No. 1 overall pick, surprising almost everyone in the Barclays Center.
Porter was an excellent selection for Washington. While he didn't have the high upside that some players who were still available at that time had, such as Nerlens Noel and Alex Len, he was a safe pick that should immediately pay off.
The 20-year-old out of Georgetown probably won't be an All Star right away, but he should be the starting small forward when the start of the season rolls around. Porter showed scouts that he is a reliable shooter and is NBA-ready.
Washington could have gone with Noel or Len to get some help down low, but Porter was a much better pick for the Wizards in this time of rebuilding. Having someone who could be a potential bust isn't what the Wizards need (Jan Vesely anyone?), and Porter will be ready to contend for the Rookie of the Year award in 2014.
Glen Rice Jr. (No. 35)
Rice averaged 13 points per game at Georgia Tech during his junior year before he was suspended indefinitely for off-the-court issues.
His value depreciated after the suspension, but he was picked up in the NBA Development League draft in 2012 by the Rio Grande Valley Vipers. Rice led the Vipers to the D-League championship this season and eventually became a sleeper pick in the draft.
The Wizards addressed their need for a backup shooting guard with this pick, and Rice will likely be Washington's leading sixth man heading into next year, if not this season.
At the No. 35 pick, Rice was the best available player, and the second round was the right time to take a risk.
There is no doubt that Rice is talented, and if he can stay out of trouble, he could turn out to be the best steal in the draft.
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