2008 NBA Mock Draft: The Last One, I Promise
On the first day of June, I published what I thought was my final mock draft.
Obviously, I was wrong.
This final (yes, this one is the last) mock draft projects who teams are likely to take, not who I would take.
So, for the final time, here is my final mock draft.
1. Chicago Bulls select Derrick Rose, Memphis guard: Chicago has been quiet about its draft possibilities, but Rose will be the first name David Stern reads June 26.
2. Miami Heat select O.J. Mayo, USC guard: Before you get all bug-eyed at this pick, let me explain. It is believed the Heat either want Mayo or to trade out of the No. 2 pick. Since I can't project draft night trades, I'll pencil in Mayo for Miami.
3. Minnesota Timberwolves select Michael Beasley, Kansas State forward: If the previous pick works out, then this is a no-brainer for Minnesota. If not, the T'Wolves may have to decide among a plethora of players or a trade.
4. Seattle Sonics select Jerryd Bayless, Arizona guard: It is believed, even if both are on the board at No. 4, that Seattle is higher on Bayless than Mayo. He'll be the fourth pick.
5. Memphis Grizzlies select Kevin Love, UCLA forward: Love is the favorite for Memphis at No. 5 right now, but don't be surprised if the Grizzlies try to form a deal with the Heat to switch picks.
6. New York Knicks select Anthony Randolph, LSU forward: Like Chad Ford of ESPN, I believe this pick is too high to roll the dice on a player like D.J. Augustin. The Knicks will take the top-rated player on the board.
7. Los Angeles Clippers select Eric Gordon, Indiana guard: The Clippers need a slasher/shooter, and Gordon is the obvious guy in this draft.
8. Milwaukee Bucks select Danilo Gallinari, Italy forward: Milwaukee needs an impact forward, and Gallinari will be the highest one available.
9. Charlotte Bobcats select Brook Lopez, Stanford center: Lopez is a good fit here, because Charlotte would be able to move Emeka Okafor to the power forward position.
10. New Jersey Nets select DeAndre Jordan, Texas A&M center: The Nets need an impact player in the post, and Jordan should fill out well as an NBA player.
11. Indiana Pacers select Russell Westbrook, UCLA guard: Westbrook has been good in workouts, and shows more upside than a guard like D.J. Augustin. Hence, he'll be picked over Augustin.
12. Sacramento Kings select D.J. Augustin, Texas guard: Sacramento is very thin in the backcourt, so this has to be the pick.
13. Portland Trail Blazers select Joe Alexander, West Virginia forward: Take this previous sentence with a grain of salt. This pick will be traded.
14. Golden State Warriors select Kosta Koufos, Ohio State center: The Warriors are in a great spot in this draft due to the amount of athletic big men. Koufos fits the system.
15. Phoenix Suns select Brandon Rush, Kansas guard: The Suns are still not looking to rebuild, and Rush is a guy that can play significant minutes right away at a thin position for Phoenix.
16. Philadelphia 76ers select Marreese Speights, Florida forward: Every mock draft I've seen has Speights locked in here, so why mess with a winning formula?
17. Toronto Raptors select Donte Greene, Syracuse forward: His versatility makes him an immediate-impact type of player.
18. Washington Wizards select Darrell Arthur, Kansas forward: Arthur could very well go in the lottery. But, if he's available at No. 18 for the Wizards, he should be the pick over JaVale McGee.
19. Cleveland Cavaliers select JaVale McGee, Nevada center: The Cavs need a lot of help, but adding some athleticism in the post isn't a bad idea.
20. Denver Nuggets select Robin Lopez, Stanford center: Good fit for the Nuggets' system, and the replacement for the either retiring or traded Marcus Camby.
21. New Jersey Nets select Nicolas Batum, France forward: After the Nets shore up the interior, the thought process should then switch to the wings. If Richard Jefferson is traded, Batum would be a nice replacement. Chase Budinger is also a strong candidate.
22. Orlando Magic select Ty Lawson, North Carolina guard: Both Magic backup point guards are on the market, so getting Jameer Nelson some help is key.
23. Utah Jazz select Roy Hibbert, Georgetown center: I think this pick is rather obvious. Hibbert fits Jerry Sloan's system, and the Jazz need some interior help. That simple.
24. Seattle Sonics select Serge Ibaka, Congo forward: The Sonics will get its home run hitter at No. 4, so taking a chance on down-the-road potential would be a novel idea. I really like Ibaka's game.
25. Houston Rockets select Chase Budinger, Arizona forward: Budinger is a solid offensive player that lacks defensive intensity. But at No. 25, a player with Budinger's firepower is a bargain.
26. San Antonio Spurs select Mario Chalmers, Kansas guard: San Antonio needs a complement to Tony Parker in the backcourt. Chalmers has proven he can be the next clutch guard at the NBA level.
27. New Orleans Hornets select Chris Douglas-Roberts, Memphis guard: If CDR isn't off the board, he'd be the best pick New Orleans could make.
28. Memphis Grizzlies select J.J. Hickson, North Carolina State forward: At No. 28 and Memphis' second first-round choice, Hickson is a steal. If he stayed at NC State one more year, he'd be a lottery pick next year.
29. Detroit Pistons select Jason Thompson, Rider forward: I've been high on Thompson for a while now, but I can see him slipping some in this draft. The Pistons need help in the paint, and Thompson may be the best available.
30. Boston Celtics select Bill Walker, Kansas State forward: Had Walker not torn his ACL over a year ago, he'd be a top ten pick without a doubt (just my opinion). At No. 30, Danny Ainge has to pull the trigger on this explosive athlete.
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