2009 NBA Mock Draft 3.5

Shady BotrosAnalyst IJune 25, 2009

MEMPHIS, TN - MARCH 29:  Blake Griffin #23 of the Oklahoma Sooners walks off the court after losing to the North Carolina Tar Heels during the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament South Regional Final at the FedExForum on March 29, 2009 in Memphis, Tennessee. The Tar Heels defeated the Sooners 72-60 to advance to the Final Four.  (Photo by Joe Murphy/Getty Images)

With the draft in a matter of hours, there have been some minor changes via trades and rumors. This is an updated mock draft

1. Los Angeles Clippers: Blake Griffin

Who else the consensus No. 1 overall pick?

Griffin is extremely athletic, has a great work ethic, and is extremely creative in getting to the rim. However, he lacks a jump shot, but expect that to develop over the years.

Expect the Clippers to try to get rid of Zach Randolph ad his contract.  

2. Memphis Grizzlies: Hasheem Thabeet

Obviously, we have all heard the Mutumbo comparisons.

Thabeet can come into the NBA and be a defensive presence immediately because of his 7'2" frame. However, offensively, he still has a ways to go and lacks a go-to post move.

He is very raw, but the Grizzlies need height, and Thabeet will be the pick at No. 2, although they give Rubio a long hard look.

The Grizzlies will give Mike Conley a last chance, and as much as they like Thabeet, I think that the Grizzlies want to trade the pick.

3. Oklahoma City Thunder: Ricky Rubio

Many people are saying Harden is the pick, but Thunder general manager Sam Presti knows how good Rubio is.

Russell Westbrook is not a true point guard, and playing alongside Rubio makes him, Kevin Durant, and Jeff Green much better.

Rubio will instantly fit in the Thunder young core and will improve everyone around him. 

4. Sacramento Kings: Tyreke Evans

Evans is the most overrated player in this draft.

He is not a prospect that I really like due to his lack of athleticism and slow lateral movement, which leads me to think that he will play very little time at point guard in the NBA.

However, Evans can beat you off the dribble, and he had a great workout for the Kings.


5. Minnesota Timberwolves: Stephen Curry

With the deal with Washington, the Timberwolves obtain the pick and take one of my favorite players in this draft to play the point.

Curry will be perfect to go along with an All-Star frontcourt in Al Jefferson and Kevin Love.

Curry is the best in the draft in terms of basketball IQ, creating his own shot, and shooting the ball from anywhere on the court. He reminds me a lot of Steve Nash, who wasn’t the Steve Nash of today when coming out.

The stereotype with Curry is that he is weak and isn't athletic. Actually, he has great size to play the point guard at 6'3", and he benched more than Terrence Williams at the draft combine in Chicago.

6. Minnesota Timberwolves: James Harden

The Timberwolves rebuild their backcourt with Curry and Harden. Harden is a great scorer to go along with college basketball’s most prolific scorer in Curry.

Expect the Timberwolves to vastly improve if they get the most out of these prospects, although I expect them to package one of these picks and one of the later first-round picks to trade up to the second pick.

7. Golden State Warriors: Jordan Hill

The Warriors need a big man, and Hill reminds me a lot of a bigger Chris Bosh. It seems Don Nelson has made Hill a guarantee.

8. New York Knicks: Jonny Flynn

The Knicks come out the big losers of the draft, as Curry does not fall to No. 8, which ends the love affair between Curry and the Knicks.

Flynn, however, is extremely quick with the ball. He can create his own shot, and he is very durable, giving the Knicks a great fit for Mike D’Antoni’s system.

9. Toronto Raptors: DeMar DeRozan

Remember, all DeRozan is just a lot of tempting upside, however, he is a few years from becoming a regular contributor.

But the Raptors have some options, since Chris Bosh’s name will be involved in trade rumors.

DeRozan has a ton of upside and is extremely athletic. According to scouts, he has drawn Kobe Bryant comparisons, and Toronto will be getting a player with a ton of potential.

This pick is all but official. DeRozan has been very selective of teams he works out for, and he is at the top of Toronto’s board.

10. Milwaukee Bucks: Jrue Holiday

With the Richard Jefferson deal, the Bucks now have room to sign Charlie Villanueva.

That means Ramon Sessions has to go, which means the Bucks take the best point guard on the board in the unproven Jrue Holiday.

Holiday has a ton of upside. He’s a lockdown defender who has a soft touch from the inside and an NBA ready body, although he may still be a few years away from contributing.


11. New Jersey Nets: Earl Clark

The Nets get a great power forward who can shoot the ball, which means he can stretch the defense.

Clark now has improved his jumper and can play the post.

12. Charlotte Bobcats: Terrence Williams

According to many sources, Williams and Henderson worked out, and Williams got a guarantee that he is at the top of Larry Brown’s board.

Williams is in the Andre Iguadala or Scottie Pippen mold. He isn’t a great shooter or scorer, but he can improve that like Iguadala did.

He is a great perimeter defender, and very athletic player.

13. Indiana Pacers: Jeff Teague

Larry Bird takes the local kid Jeff Teague, who has the quickest first step in this draft. He is more of a score first point guard.  


14. Phoenix Suns-James Johnson

Johnson was among the most athletic player in the ACC.

He is a hybrid who can play the three and the four and has great size to go along with a nice mid-range jumper.

15. Detroit Pistons: B.J. Mullens

Mullens is a talented seven-footer with great upside. However, people question his work ethic.

Detroit supposedly made him a guarantee that he would not slip past No. 15.

As talented as Mullens is, big men take time to develop, and Mullens is still at least two years away from being a solid player in the pros.

16. Chicago Bulls: DeJuan Blair

Blair may be a little undersized, but he is a fearless rebounder.

Blair is about 277 pounds and manhandled Thabeet, which means he isn’t scared to play bigger guys, something he will have to do at the next level.

17. Philadelphia 76ers: Ty Lawson

I think the Sixers are making a huge mistake by passing up on Jennings, but sources say they love Lawson, and he would be a great fit in the Princeton offense.

18. Minnesota Timberwolves: Austin Daye

Daye is very versatile, as he can shoot the ball and he is 6'10".

However, he is considered a bad teammate and soft, and he likes no contact whatsoever. Those problems raise a red flag. 

19. Atlanta Hawks: Brandon Jennings

This would be, by far, the biggest steal of the draft after.

Atlanta traded Acie Law, and Mike Bibby is a free agent, which means the Hawks need a point guard. Jennings is Allen Iverson-quick, he can shoot the ball, and has a ton of upside.

20. Utah Jazz: Tyler Hansbrough

It looks like Carlos Boozer will depart via free agency, which means Utah will take Tyler Hansbrough.

Hansbrough brings a blue collar mentality to the Jazz that will fit in great. He has improved a lot of aspects of his game, like his post play and his jumper, and he would be a steal at No. 20 for Utah.

21. New Orleans Hornets: Eric Maynor

Maynor is very NBA-ready, and Chris Paul needs a backup.

I believe Maynor is too good to be a backup, but he will get solid minutes as a rookie to give CP3 some relief.

22. Portland Trailblazers: Sam Young

Sam Young has scared teams away since he is 24 years old. He has no upside, but he brings great value in the 20s.

23. Sacramento Kings: Gerald Henderson

Henderson has slipped off my board due to his inconsistency.

He also has reached his ceiling and has no upside, but he's a great value at No. 23.


24. Dallas Mavericks: Darren Collison

Collison shared the backcourt last season with Holiday.

Dallas takes Collison to be a nice backup for Jason Kidd if re-signed.

25. Oklahoma City Thunder: DeMare Carrol

26. Chicago Bulls: DeJuan Summers

27. Memphis Grizzlies: Patrick Mills

28. Minnesota Timberwolves: Omri Casspi

Casspiwas not great at the workouts.

If drafted in the first round, he would be the first Israeli ever taken that early.

29. New York Knicks: Chase Budinger

The Lakers have sold the pick to the Knicks for $3 million, hoping to re-sign Trevor Ariza and Lamar Odom.

Therefore, the Knicks get Budinger, who is a player who has never lived up to the hype.

But if there’s any coach who can get the most out of his players, it’s Mike D’Antoni.

30. Cleveland Cavaliers: Derrick Brown


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