NBA Mock Draft: Pre-Draft Camp Edition
You have seen all the early entrants and the few players who have decided to play one more collegiate season.
You have seen my big board for this year's draft. The early entry deadline has come and gone, so the only thing left to go is the Pre-Draft Camp in Orlando, which gets underway in late May and ends in the first week of June.
It seems like as good a time as any to mock the first round, so here it goes. The order of teams is based on 2007-08 final record, because the draft lottery isn't until May 20.
1. Miami Heat select Derrick Rose, Memphis Point Guard
Miami needs a lot, and they could certainly go with Michael Beasley, but a point guard who can do it all will be a perennial All-Star.
2. Seattle/Oklahoma City Sonics select Michael Beasley, Kansas State Forward
Everyone has seen the crazy numbers Beasley put up at K-State, so this pick is a no-brainer.
3. Minnesota Timberwolves select O.J. Mayo, Southern California Guard
Mayo is a dynamic combo guard who could help the T'Wolves right away in the scoring column.
4. Memphis Grizzlies select Brook Lopez, Stanford Center
This seems like a simple pick to me. There are lots of guards in the draft, but the Grizz have taken a lot of guards in the recent past. Pau Gasol is no longer in Memphis, so they need to add some front court depth.
5. New York Knicks select Jerryd Bayless, Arizona Point Guard
Bayless has tons of room to improve, but his high motor and passion would be great for the Knicks' locker room.
6. Los Angeles Clippers select Eric Gordon, Indiana Shooting Guard
When healthy, Chris Kaman and Elton Brand combine for a solid front court tandem. A shooter, like Gordon, would spread out the defense and be great for L.A.
7. Milwaukee Bucks select Danilo Gallinari, Italy Small Forward
Like a lot of European players, Gallinari has a fluid offensive game with a few question marks. However, he can be somewhat of a defensive liability. He will fit into the league, no doubt.
8. Charlotte Bobcats select Kevin Love, UCLA Power Forward
The Bobcats have forwards similar to Love, but none with an offensive game that comes close to that of Love.
9. Chicago Bulls select Darrell Arthur, Kansas Power Forward
The NCAA Tournament should raise Arthur's stock, and he would fit in beautifully with the Chicago Bulls.
10. New Jersey Nets select DeAndre Jordan, Texas A&M Center
Jordan did not play significant minutes at A&M, so his numbers weren't huge. However, his potential is through the roof, and that's what the draft is all about.
11. Indiana Pacers select Anthony Randolph, LSU Forward
Like Jordan, Randolph's potential exceeds his current skill. He has the ability to be a stat-sheet stuffer at the small forward position.
12. Sacramento Kings select D.J. Augustin, Texas Point Guard
There is still speculation as to whether or not Augustin will return to school, but I believe he is a lottery pick this year and the Kings could use a point guard like D.J.
13. Portland Trail Blazers select Russell Westbrook, UCLA Guard
Westbrook will have to learn the ropes of playing point guard in the NBA, but he has the ability to be an exceptional defender and game-breaker.
14. Golden State Warriors select Kosta Koufos, Ohio State Center
Opponents out-rebounded the Warriors by four rebounds per game in 2007-08, and Koufos would certainly help on that end. His athleticism fits Don Nelson's game well.
15. Phoenix Suns (from Hawks) select Nicolas Batum, France Shooting Guard
Batum is fluid offensively and has the tools needed to become a solid defender in the NBA.
16. Philadelphia 76ers select Joe Alexander, West Virginia Small Forward
Alexander can shoot from anywhere on the court, and that's something the 76ers need desperately.
17. Toronto Raptors select Chase Budinger, Arizona Shooting Guard
The Raptors are currently thin at the 2-guard position, and Budinger would be a nice pick at No. 17.
18. Washington Wizards select JaVale McGee, Nevada Center
McGee is one of the longest players in the draft (7-foot-6 wingspan). His athleticism, considering his size, should allow him to play for a long time in the league.
19. Cleveland Cavaliers select Brandon Rush, Kansas Shooting Guard
LeBron James is probably the best all-around player in the NBA, but the knock on him is he doesn't like to take the last shot, yet Brandon Rush would not shy away from it.
20. Denver Nuggets select Robin Lopez, Stanford Center
This Lopez is not as solid offensively as his brother, but he is a hustle player who could be a great interior defender.
21. New Jersey Nets (from Mavericks) select Davon Jefferson, Southern Cal Forward
Jefferson is a highlight waiting to happen, and once he develops a consistent outside shot, he'll be a solid offensive player in the NBA.
22. Orlando Magic select Jason Thompson, Rider Power Forward
Thompson didn't play against the best competition at Rider, but I'm still intrigued by this athletic forward.
23. Utah Jazz select Donte Green, Syracuse Small Forward
With Green's size and perimeter game, he could be a tough matchup for years in the NBA.
24. Seattle/Oklahoma City Sonics (from Suns) select Lester Hudson, UT-Martin Point Guard
Hudson reminds me, and a lot of others, of Rodney Stuckey of the Detroit Pistons. He is a dynamic guard from a small school and will put up solid numbers as a pro.
25. Houston Rockets select Roy Hibbert, Georgetown Center
Hibbert actually hurt his stock by returning to Georgetown, so we'll see how he pans out as a pro.
26. San Antonio Spurs select Chris Douglas-Roberts, Memphis Shooting Guard
CDR has a lot of question marks heading into the draft, but, quite frankly, he is just simply a winner and the Spurs have some experience in that field.
27. New Orleans Hornets select Ryan Anderson, California Forward
Anderson lacks great quickness, but he can fill it up in a hurry. At 6-foot-10, he'll have an advantage shooting the three-ball, which is a strong suit for him.
28. Memphis Grizzlies (from Lakers) select Joey Dorsey, Memphis Power Forward
Yeah, it looks like a nice story with a Memphis player going to Memphis, but it is actually a fit. Dorsey will never be an offensive factor, but his defense and high motor will energize his team.
29. Detroit Pistons select Courtney Lee, Western Kentucky Shooting Guard
Lee was already an NBA prospect, but the NCAA Tournament certainly helped his stock. Lee has a lot of skill factors going against him, but he could develop into a solid sixth man.
30. Boston Celtics select Kyle Weaver, Washington State Guard
Weaver has the ability to play either guard position, but his money will be made on the defensive end. He could be a steal late in the first round.
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