It seems like everybody in the world is coming up with a mock draft of everybody involved in the Draft Lottery earlier this week.
To follow this trend, I’m going to give my picks of who I think teams SHOULD pick. Not will pick, but should. Knowing the Knicks, they’ll probably take Stefon Hannah or something of that nature.
I’ll also give a player comparison in my projections, drawing connections from the draft pick to a current NBA player and showing why I think their skill-set matches up with that pro.
With the number one overall pick in the 2008 NBA Draft, the Chicago Bulls select…Michael Beasley, forward, Kansas State
Beasley is the big man that the Bulls have needed for years now. In addition to providing scoring and rebounding in the post, he’d also make shooters like Nocioni, Gordon, and Hinrich much better, by relieving pressure on the perimeter.
Player Comparison: Rasheed Wallace
Beasley can score both inside and outside, and gets up and down the floor very well for a big guy. There’s no doubting his skill. He has the chance to be even better than Sheed, if he can put all his skills to use and remain focused throughout an entire game.
No. 2, Miami Heat select Derrick Rose, guard, Memphis
The Heat really need a big man in this situation, but Rose is just too good to pass up.
I’m tempted to say they’ll pick Brook Lopez or Kevin Love over this D-Wade clone, but hey, maybe two D-Wades will be better than one. Rose distributed the ball well at Memphis, maybe he’ll be able to pass to capable scorers in Miami.
Player Comparison: Dwayne Wade
Wade was just like Rose when he came out of Marquette. Both have bigger bodies for guards, and can score and play defense. Their primary way of scoring is getting to the hole, so the similarities continue there as well.
Whether Rose will be able to enhance his game at the next level remains to be seen, but the two have definite parallels.
No. 3, Minnesota Timberwolves select Brook Lopez, center, Stanford
The Wolves already have Rashad McCants and Randy Foye to score from the guard position, so a big man is clearly the first priority. Lopez could compliment Al Jefferson really well. He has the ability to post up in the paint as well as shoot a midrange jumper.
Player Comparison: Samuel Dalembert
Although Dalembert is most-known for his ridiculous contract, he’s actually a really good center. He averaged a double-double this season, and I can’t stop thinking of Lopez as the white version. They’re both skinnier players that move well.
No. 4, Seattle Supersonics select Jerryd Bayless, guard, Arizona
This would be the perfect move for the Sonics. Bayless can be the point guard of the future, and give the franchise a great core of youth to work around at a variety of positions.
With Bayless at the point, Kevin Durant, Jeff Green, and Nick Collison, the Sonics could set themselves up for a lot of success in the future, regardless of where they're playing.
Player Comparison: Rafer Alston
Both players are flashy, fast guards who can fill the cup. Bayless seems to be a little more polished than Alston was at the same age, but even if he turned into another “Skip To My Lou”, he’d be better than Luke Ridnour.
No. 5, Memphis Grizzlies select Kevin Love, forward, UCLA
As I already wrote about, Love would be the perfect fit in Memphis. He’s an athletic big who can shoot, a perfect fit in the Grizzlies’ offense. Surrounding Love with scorers like Rudy Gay and Mike Miller would open him up for big-time scoring and assist numbers.
Player Comparison: David West
They’re similar sizes and have similar skill sets. Love might be a better passer, and can score both in and around the basket. Too small to play the center, I think Love can still be a great post player, just like West.
No. 6, New York Knicks select Eric Gordon, guard, Indiana
Gordon is like a combination of every guard the Knicks already have, except he’s actually good.
He can shoot like Quentin Richardson, handle like Stephon Marbury, and get to the basket like Nate Robinson. He’ll give new coach Mike D’ Antoni at least one player to build around.
Player Comparison: Cuttino Mobley
Gordon can score, like Mobley could in his prime. They’re both bigger guards who can get to the basket, and shoot as well. He’d be a great addition to the Knicks, and his flashy game would be great for the Big Apple.
No. 7, Los Angeles Clippers select OJ Mayo, guard, USC
Mayo could stay in California, and provide scoring punch to the guard position for the Clips. To complement Chris Kaman and Elton Brand, Mayo would be a great fit. Additionally, Corey Maggette is seemingly never happy, so this would give L.A. more wiggle room with him.
Player Comparison: Ben Gordon
Just like Gordon, Mayo has the confidence to hoist up a lot of shots, but just like Gordon, Mayo is a streaky shooter who might shoot too much sometimes. Both are cocky, but Mayo carries much more baggage than Gordon ever has.
No. 8, Milwaukee Bucks select Anthony Randolph, forward, LSU
Randolph had a great freshman year at LSU, and Yi has been more of a perimeter player in Milwaukee, so Randolph would be a great fit.
He could play alongside improving Andrew Bogut in the post, freeing up sharp shooter Michael Redd more often on the perimeter.
Player Comparison: LeMarcus Aldridge
Both are skinny for their height, but had no trouble scoring and rebounding at the collegiate ranks. Aldridge struggled initially in the NBA but is a very good player now. Randolph could go through a similar transition period.
No. 9, Charlotte Bobcats select DeAndre Jordan, forward, Texas A&M
Jordan has the biggest upside of any center in the draft, with great size and strength. However, he hasn’t fully matured yet, and could also be a bust if he fails to develop properly.
I think with the proper coaching, Jordan could be apart of a formidable duo, alongside Emeka Okafor.
Player Comparison: Nene
They have similar builds and similar games. Nene has shown flashes of great talent and was playing well earlier this season before dealing with a cancer diagnosis. They both play predominantly in the post, and have the muscle to bang down low.
No. 10, New Jersey Nets select Kostas Koufos, forward, Ohio State
Koufos can shoot from the inside and the outside, and would be the offensive big man that the Nets have been looking for. He’d be a great piece to build around for the future alongside newly acquired Devin Harris, as both like to run the floor.
Player Comparison: Zydrunas Ilgauskas
They have similar size and skill sets. Koufos actually has longer shooting range than Ilgauskas already, but doesn’t handle the ball as well inside or have the same rebounding prowess that “Big Z” has.
No. 11, Indiana Pacers select D.J. Augustin, guard, Texas
The Pacers have been reeling since the brawl at The Palace a few years back, and although players like Jermaine O’Neal and Jamaal Tinsley are talented, a new identity to the team is clearly needed. Augustin is a talented player who will be a good PG for a long time in the league.
With Tinsley’s health and character constantly in question, Augustin would be the first step in the Pacer’s recovery to becoming championship contenders once again.
Player Comparison: Mike Bibby
Both players are smaller guards that can score as well as pass. In addition, both were winners coming out of college.
0Some people think the Pacers would be reaching by taking D.J. here, but I think the risk is worth it. The Pacers would be thrilled to draft the next Bibby.
No. 12, Sacramento Kings select Russell Westbrook, guard, UCLA
Drafting Westbrook would give Kevin Martin a solid partner in the King’s backcourt. Westbrook oozes potential, with great size and skills.
Coupled with last year’s first-round pick, Spencer Hawes, the Kings would have a couple of young players that will excite Sac-Town fans for years to come.
Player Comparison: Randy Foye
I am making this comparison based on the assumption that Westbrook develops decently. Not to his full potential, but also doesn’t bust. He has been compared to stars such as Dwayne Wade, but also could end up like Fred Jones.
Regardless of who he’s compared to, Westbrook should be able to bring size, speed, and scoring to whatever team drafts him, just like Foye brings to the Wolves.
No. 13, Portland Blazers select Ty Lawson, guard, UNC
Although Lawson is undersized, he has the speed and ball-skills to be a solid PG in the league. The open-style of the NBA might actually suit him better than his UNC offense, and Lawson will probably be a better player than Steve Blake and Jarrett Jack have turned out to be.
Player Comparison: Sebastian Telfair
Some people think that Telfair has been a bust, but he played very well at times for the T-Wolves this year. Lawson had time in college to develop and should be as good as Telfair right now. Good enough to average about 10 points and six assists as a rookie.
No. 14, Golden State Warriors select Danillo Gallinari, forward, Italy
Gallinari fits the Warriors perfectly. He’d be perfect in their up-tempo, fast, style of play, and the frontcourt for G-State isn’t exactly mind-blowing with talent. Gallinari would make a great complement to Baron Davis and Monta Ellis.
Player Comparison: Andrea Bargnani
Well, I’m not gonna compare this guy to Dirk. I haven’t even seen him play. Every scouting report and rumor I’ve heard say he’s got a game that revolves around shooting and finesse, so I’m going with Bargnani.
Definitely let me know what you guys think. It should be a really good draft, with a combination of proven guys and kids with sky-high ceilings. Thanks for reading!