The Bulls winning the 2008 NBA Draft Lottery really shakes things up a bit. Chicago only had a 1.7 percent chance of winning the lottery, but lo and behold they will pick first on June 26th in Madison Square Garden.
The Bulls made the biggest jump in the draft, coming in at 10th but landing on No. 1. Seattle had the biggest drop, falling from a projected No. 2 pick down to No. 4.
1. Chicago—Derrick Rose, PG, Memphis
This is my “feel good” pick of the ’08 draft. Chicago, like last year with Portland choosing first, is faced with the ultimate task of deciding between Rose and Michael Beasley. Portland ultimately had to decide between two can’t miss players as well, Oden and Durant.
I think the Bulls will go with Rose for a few reasons. He is a big upgrade from current PG Kirk Hinrich. Rose’s game translates well to the fast paced NBA style of play, and he will make an immediate impact on the game, where as Beasley could take some time to adjust.
I know Chicago has had success in drafting “Michaels,” but Rose is Chicago’s own son, and he’s a can't miss prospect.
2. Miami—Michael Beasley, PF, Kansas State
Luckily for Miami, the Bulls must decide between Rose and Beasley, and the Heat can patiently wait at the No. 2 spot. Either athlete would benefit Miami.
Beasley is a better fit in Miami than Rose. The Heat is D-Wade’s team and I wouldn’t want to mess with the back court chemistry. Beasley is a perfect complement to Sean Marion, and since the Diesel’s departure, the Heat haven’t had a force down low.
3. Minnesota—Brook Lopez, C, Stanford
The T-Wolves are in desperate need of a true center, and Lopez certainly fits the description. Although the ’08 class is loaded with big men, most are SFs and PFs. Lopez really proved himself this season in a loaded Pac-10 conference. He has the height, the muscle, and the frame to be a force in the NBA.
4. Seattle—Jerryd Bayless, PG, Arizona
Bayless, the third “one-and-done” to be selected in the ’08 draft, is an exciting player. He will be an excellent fit alongside Durant and his ability to be a scoring PG will have a positive impact on the Sonics' offense from the get-go.
In recent NBA workouts, Bayless has impressed scouts more so than O.J. Mayo has, bumping Bayless up in the draft to No. 4.
5. Memphis—Kevin Love, PF, UCLA
Love really proved his worth and lived up to the hype surrounding him at UCLA this season. The talented big man has post moves for days and can battle down low. With the departure of Pau Gasol, the Grizzlies are in dire need of a big man. Love is tenacious on the low block and is a great windex man.
6. New York—Darrell Arthur, PF, Kansas
The consensus among NBA analysts is that the Knicks will go with either O.J. Mayo or Italy’s Danilo Gallinari.
The Knicks certainly don’t need to waste their draft pick with a guard and I’m not sold on drafting a 19-year-old Italian player this high in the draft (or anyone from Europe for that matter).
Arthur is a big man, the best available in my opinion at pick No. 6, and he really showed what he is capable of throughout the NCAA tournament and the Jayhawks National Championship run. Arthur is agile, rebounds well, and moves up and down the court with great speed for a big man.
7. Los Angeles Clippers—O.J. Mayo, PG, USC
The Clippers need a true PG that can run the show and play some perimeter defense. Look no further than O.J. to fill that role in Los Angeles.
They’ll have a tough time deciding between Mayo and Eric Gordon, but Mayo’s ball handling skills are far superior and better fit the role. Mayo claims he chose USC because he wanted to play on a big stage, although we know it was actually for $30,000 and shiny new TV, so L.A. is a good fit.
8. Milwaukee—Eric Gordon, SG, Indiana
As an Indiana fan, I’m happy to see a former Hoosier drafted in the top-10, but I hate to see him go to Milwaukee. Scouts believe an SG with a presence like Gordon’s can really free up Michael Redd and allow the both of them to get their touches.
Look for Gordon to be drafted by Milwaukee, because at No. 8, he’s the highest talent undrafted. Gordon could have really benefited from another year of college ball, as we all saw his numbers plummet in the second half of the season, but his upside is too great.
9. Charlotte—Anthony Randolph, PF LSU
The Bobcats are looking for someone who can produce right away, from an offensive standpoint. Randolph is super-athletic, has great size, and a tremendous upside. It’s Randolph’s athleticism that makes him a sure lottery pick.
10. New Jersey—Joe Alexander, SF, West Virginia
New Jersey is in an interesting situation. If a PF like Anthony Randolph or Darrell Arthur is still available, look for the Nets to go in that direction. Alexander has a great mid-range game and he’s athletic in the post. His shooting range has scouts going crazy and his size is a bonus at small forward.