Thursday is Draft Day, and I'm very excited. Although the NFL draft is more researched and hyped than its basketball counterpart, the two big drafts are always fun. It's like getting Christmas presents for your favorite sports team!
The Bulls have two first round picks this year, at number 16 and number 26. Speculation has Chicago looking at a wide range of players, from UNC stars Tyler Hansbrough, Ty Lawson, and Wayne Ellington to Dookie Gerald Henderson, who could be targeted in a trade-up.
A couple of quick thoughts for my favorite team:
1) Why not package your picks to move up and take Davidson's Stephen Curry? Curry is a lights-out shooter who can also handle the ball and play a little bit of defense. He's also 6'3".
Targeting Curry (who will be gone by the Knicks' selection at 8, if not before) would allow the Bulls to release Ben Gordon. Now, don't get me wrong. I like Ben. But he is barely six foot. He can't play any defense at all. And he's going to cost you at least ten million dollars a year, while never being a true starter.
Curry would be a better complement for Derrick Rose, and letting Gordon go would allow the Bulls to keep Kirk Hinrich, a tremendous team leader and character guy who is about the best Rose insurance policy I can think of.
2) Please don't even think about taking Gonzaga's lightweight PF Austin Daye! I believe that Daye came into the Berto Center for a workout in this leadup to the draft, and he is seen as an upside guy. He has always been a hyped draft prospect. The problem?
Um, he can't really make an impact. Every time I saw him in college he looked lost on the floor. He was about the fourth fiddle on the Zags team last year, behind Heytvelt, Bouldin, and Pargo. I'm sorry, but if you can't look good in college, you're probably not goanna do it in the Big Leagues. I'm terrified of Daye.
3) Anyone from Carolina = a good pick. Danny Green at 26 would be a great deal. So would Wayne Ellington. Gerald Henderson scares me because he is a bit too similar to Derrick Rose minus Rose's court vision (Henderson can't really shoot the trey, either), but he will be a good pro. In my mind, he would be worth it at 16, but not worth trading both picks for.
Ty Lawson and Tyler Hansbrough... oh man, I love those guys. Lawson simply flies up and down the floor, and his J is good too. He would be a blast to watch on the fast break with Rose, Tyrus, and Noah.
Hansbrough is one of the best work ethic guys in basketball and has impressed scouts with his underrated athleticism and midrange game. I'm not exactly impartial here, but any of these Heels would look great following MJ's footsteps.
4) I like DeJuan "Charles Barkley II" Blair, a lot. I think he will be a good pro. If he is there at sixteen, he'd be an easy pick. Sadly, he will be gone. Oh well.
5) Let's trade the second pick for OKC's D.J. White. Need a skilled power forward who still has room to grow and a solid all-around game? White is underused in Oklahoma City and would be a great rotation guy for Chicago. We know that the two teams like to trade (witness Thabo Sefalosha), so why not make this happen?
6) I think this is a pretty good year, all around, for the draft. Not many superstars, although Ricky Rubio has the potential (watch him on YouTube if you don't believe it), but a whole lot of quality starters and rotation guys all the way through the top 40 or so prospects.
I'm excited to see who lands where and for summer league to get started!