Grading Every Draft Pick

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2014 NBA Draft Results: List of Grades for Every Team

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2014 NBA Draft Results: List of Grades for Every Team
Jason DeCrow/Associated Press

Upset at your team's selection during the 2014 NBA draft? Well, you probably have a right to be.

There were a bunch of head-scratchers during this year's event. Bruno Caboclo, a very raw prospect from Brazil, was selected No. 20 overall by the Toronto Raptors. Many predicted he would go to the Raptors, but not in Round 1. Some said Round 2. Others thought they would pursue him heavily in post-draft free agency.

Nope, they grabbed him at No. 20.

For every questionable pick, there are great ones, though. The Charlotte Hornets grabbed Noah Vonleh at No. 9, and the New York Knicks traded into the draft to select Cleanthony Early at No. 34. Those are two of the bigger steals of the night.

As is the case after every draft, it's time to dish out some grades.

Kenny DeJohn's 2014 NBA Draft Grades
Team Picks Grade
Boston Celtics Marcus Smart (6), James Young (17) A-
Brooklyn Nets Markel Brown (44), Xavier Thames (59), Corey Jefferson (60) B
New York Knicks Cleanthony Early (34), Thanasis Antetokounmpo (51), Louis Labeyrie (57) B+
Philadelphia 76ers Joel Embiid (3), Dario Saric (12), K.J. McDaniels (32), Jerami Grant (39), Vasilije Micic (52), Jordan McRae (58) A
Toronto Raptors Bruno Caboclo (20), DeAndre Daniels (37) D
Chicago Bulls Doug McDermott (11), Cameron Bairstow (49) B-
Cleveland Cavaliers Andrew Wiggins (1), Joe Harris (33) A-
Detroit Pistons Spencer Dinwiddie (38) B
Milwaukee Bucks Jabari Parker (2), Damien Inglis (31), Johnny O'Bryant III (36) A-
Atlanta Hawks Adreian Payne (15), Walter Tavares (43), Lamar Patterson (48) B+
Charlotte Hornets Noah Vonleh (9), P.J. Hairston (26), Dwight Powell (45), Semaj Christon (55) A
Miami Heat Shabazz Napier (24) B+
Orlando Magic Aaron Gordon (4), Elfrid Payton (10) C+
Los Angeles Clippers C.J. Wilcox (28) D
Los Angeles Lakers Julius Randle (7), Jordan Clarkson (46) A-
Phoenix Suns T.J. Warren (14), Tyler Ennis (18), Bogan Bogdanovic (27), Alec Brown (50) B+
Sacramento Kings Nik Stauskas (8) D
Houston Rockets Clint Capela (25), Nick Johnson (42) A-
Memphis Grizzlies Jordan Adams (22), Jarnell Stokes (35) B
New Orleans Pelicans Russ Smith (47) B-
San Antonio Spurs Kyle Anderson (30), Nemanja Dangubic (54) A-
Denver Nuggets Jusuf Nurkic (16), Gary Harris (19), Nikola Jokic (41), Roy Devyn Marble (56) B+
Minnesota Timberwolves Zach LaVine (13), Glenn Robinson III (40), Alessandro Gentile (53) B
Oklahoma City Thunder Mitch McGary (21), Josh Huestis (29) B-
Utah Jazz Dante Exum (5), Rodney Hood (23) A

 

Best Drafts

Utah Jazz

The Utah Jazz had a fantastic draft, although their picks were really no-brainers. Both Dante Exum (No. 5) and Rodney Hood (No. 23) were expected to go higher. When they were still available, the Jazz pounced.

Jody Genessy of the Deseret News attributed their success to a bit of luck:

Two picks. Two players quickly snatched up in positions lower than they were listed on the draft board in the Jazz’s war room.

All things considered, this draft haul turned out to be a best-case scenario for a Jazz team that endured a rough, 25-win rebuilding season and grimaced as lottery-lucky Cleveland leapfrogged them in the draft order in May.

While a good draft on paper, only time will tell just how good Utah's haul was. Exum is still a very, very raw prospect. He's an intelligent player and has the raw talents that suggest growth and development, but he was an unknown as a prospect until earlier this year. He needs time.

Hood, on the other hand, is little more than a specialist. He's a lights-out three-point shooter, evidenced by his 42 percent shooting from beyond the arc last season. Defending on the wing is also a part of his game, but for all intents and purposes, the Duke product is really just a shooter.

Shooters often move around the NBA a lot during their careers. If Hood can develop into more than just that, he'll stick around in Utah for a while.

Utah still had a very good draft because of the potential of their haul and because of the value of their picks. It's time to see how their picks contribute next season and beyond.

 

Philadelphia 76ers

The Philadelphia 76ers were busy on draft night, selecting (or acquiring in draft-night trades) very talented prospects that will help bring this team out of the basement of the Eastern Conference. That said, you'll have to wait a few years before you see them together.

Joel Embiid was the pick at No. 3, but he'll likely miss a good amount of next season following surgery. Dario Saric, a player acquired for Elfrid Payton (No. 10), has to play at least two years in Turkey after signing a three-year contract with the Anadolu Efes, as reported by ESPN's Chad Ford:

They did grab two guys who can definitely contribute right away, however. K.J. McDaniels (No. 32) and Jerami Grant (No. 39) are elite athletes who can score in transition and play incredible defense. When these two are on the court, it will be difficult for the opposition to get anything going offensively.

But other than their transition games, McDaniels and Grant aren't accomplished scorers. It will be interesting to see the team dynamic when both are on the floor. I predict a lot of running.

Vasilije Micic (No. 52), another foreign-born player, will likely also be stashed overseas for a season or two.

I like the haul because of the overwhelming talent taken. Embiid and Saric are top-tier prospects, but they're just a few years away from really turning this franchise around.

 

Charlotte Hornets

The Charlotte Hornets now have some exciting young talent to run around on their new honeycomb court that was unveiled on Thursday.

Vonleh was a no-brainer at No. 9. Many—including myself—thought he'd be in play for the Orlando Magic at No. 4. Instead, Orlando chose Aaron Gordon. Exum, Marcus Smart, Julius Randle and Nik Stauskas were then taken.

Vonleh is an athletic stretch 4 who can shoot well and create space on offense. He won't play to his full potential next season, but he's a future piece to build around.

The best move of their night was making a trade for P.J. Hairston (No. 26). James Herbert of CBS Sports broke down the trade that brought him to Charlotte: "The Charlotte Hornets selected former North Carolina guard P.J. Hairston with the No. 26 pick in the 2014 NBA Draft. They traded the No. 24 pick, Shabazz Napier, to the Miami Heat in exchange for this pick, the No. 55 pick and a future second rounder."

Hairston, a polished scorer, can step in right away and provide instant offense for this team. The Hornets aren't far away from making a legitimate postseason run, and adding a go-to scorer like Hairston is a step in the right direction. That's why Matt Moore of CBS Sports gave the grade an "A":

The Hornets will look to implement him into their system in training camp.

 

Follow Kenny DeJohn on Twitter: 

@KennyDeJohn_BR

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