NBA Mock Draft: Who Will the Golden State Warriors Take At No. 11?
Now the draft process can officially begin for the Golden State Warriors. They have named their next head coach, a solid assistant coach and hired a basketball legend as an adviser to the team.
Things are looking up in Golden State.
As for the business at the 11th pick in the 2011 NBA draft on June 23, the available options are nothing to write home about.
The upcoming draft is already being written down as a four-man draft with a boatload of players from Europe. How those players from Europe will do in the NBA will be discovered in the next few years.
The Warriors, however, have not been shy in stating what they want in this draft. Owner Joe Lacob has said they will draft the best available player, but the increasing need of a big man under the basket, as well as a good defender somewhere on the floor, has got to be a top priority for the team.
1. Cleveland Cavaliers, Kyrie Irving
Undoubtedly the No. 1 pick in the 2011 NBA draft, Irving is the safest pick in the draft, by far. He handles the ball well, and we all saw what he can do playing for Duke, even in his limited time.
The only faulty part of Irving is the toe injury he sustained in his freshman year at Duke. He did come back for the NCAA Tournament, but many wonder if injuries could plague him in the NBA.
2. Minnesota Timberwolves, Derrick Williams
Williams' rise to fame and a high draft stock did not really come until his Arizona Wildcats made their run the NCAA Tournament. He was able to take over games with his athletic ability and patience with the ball in his hands down the stretch.
Although many are not certain Williams can become a superstar in the NBA, he is the best available for the T-Wolves, who need an athletic forward with highlight reel capability.
3. Utah Jazz, Brandon Knight
Again, Knight is another player whose talents came out in the NCAA Tournament. He is a sure-handed point guard who continued to learn under coach John Calipari at Kentucky, which allowed Knight to better his play in every game of March Madness.
He is the perfect fit in Utah because of their trade of Deron Williams last season. The Jazz are looking for a new franchise point guard, and Knight seems to be the best available option at that specific position in the draft.
4. Cleveland Cavaliers, Enes Kanter
The Cavaliers drafting Kanter is the last guarantee in this draft. The first four picks are set, and the duo of Kanter and Irving is a good jump start in Cleveland.
Kanter has showed up to workouts in shape and has showed himself to be a legitimate NBA center prospect.
How Kanter will matchup with other NBA centers is another discussion, but he sure has the measurements for the position. He will need good coaching in the NBA to be able to take his game to the next level.
5. Toronto Raptors, Jan Vesely
Country: Czech Republic
The Raptors have two choices here. They can get their point guard of the future in Kemba Walker, or they can go after a high-octane player like Vesely that can contribute this year.
Vesely lives above the rim and on the fast break, but his ability to shoot the ball at a high percentage is still a part of his game that needs work. Although he is working at it, Vesely will be drafted for his high level of play at such a young age and the potential of being someone like a Josh Smith or Andrei Kirilenko down the line.
6. Washington Wizards, Kawhi Leonard
The Wizards are looking for someone that can play alongside John Wall, and can contribute tomorrow. The only player that can do that within a few reasonable picks is Leonard.
He is long and physically gifted, which makes him an NBA team's dream.
Although there are questions about his tenacity in big games, as we saw in the NCAA Tournament, his athletic build is too good to pass up at #6 for the Wizards.
7. Sacramento Kings, Kemba Walker
The Kings have a no-brainer here. They need a point guard, and Walker will be available if the Raptors do no scoop him up at No. 5.
Walker brings athletic ability, heart and determination to a team that needs it now more than ever.
Sacramento will now have a good core of Tyreke Evans, Walker and DeMarcus Cousins to build around for the future.
8. Detroit Pistons, Bismack Biyombo
Not much is known about Biyombo, except that he is 18 years old with freakish physical build, but the Pistons will be drafting the best available player at No. 8.
Another viable option at this pick is Jonas Valanciunas, who is widely considered the best European talent in this draft. Although the Pistons will be taking a serious look at him, Biyombo's length and athleticism will be something that the Pistons need and cannot pass up at this position in the draft.
9. Charlotte Bobcats, Tristan Thompson
Although this is a bit of a reach at No. 9, especially with Valanciunas still on the board, the Bobcats could use an athletic player at the 3 and 4 positions on the floor. Plus, Thompson just looks like a guy that Michael Jordan would reach and take a risk to get.
Thompson can play the 3 or 4 on the floor, and has incredible upside and potential if given the opportunity.
10. Milwaukee Bucks, Jonas Valanciunas
The Bucks will strike it rich at No. 10 by landing the best European player in the draft at a position that they are in dire need of talent at.
Milwaukee could definitely use a lengthy power forward and there is zero chance that they pass up on the tall and already talented Valanciunas.
11. Golden State Warriors, Chris Singleton
School: Florida State
The Warriors have two options at No. 11 at this point. They can go with the safe power forward in Marcus Morris, or with the lengthy defender in Singleton.
Owner Joe Lacob has said that he will pick the best available player, but the defensive need is killing team.
Singleton would provide height at the SF/PF position to make up for the undersized backcourt of Monta Ellis and Stephen Curry. Plus, he would automatically be the best defender on the floor with an ability to guard anyone from a guard to a power forward.
12. Utah Jazz, Alec Burks
I'm sure the Jazz will not pass up on an athletic gift like Burks at No. 12. After already snagging Knight at No. 3, the Jazz will be looking for a versatile guard to build alongside him. Burks fits that role.
After averaging 17 PPG and 20 PPG in his freshman and sophomore seasons at Colorado, it seems that Burks is a born scorer, which the Jazz can use in these next few years.
It may take awhile for Burks to adjust to the NBA, but he has the physical abilities to do it.
13. Phoenix Suns, Jordan Hamilton
Hamilton has impressed in his workouts so far. He has showed an ability to shoot the ball at a good percentage, as well as show a good total instinct at the offensive end of the floor.
Although Hamilton will have to earn his time in Phoenix, he is to good of a talent to pass up at No. 13.
14. Houston Rockets, Marcus Morris
With the Rockets not sure how Yao Ming will come back from injury after missing another year, they will be looking at depth in the frontcourt.
Morris' slip all the way to No. 14 will be a gift for the Rockets, who could use a PF with an ability to shoot the ball from mid-range.
Also look for the Rockets to reach for sharp shooters like Jimmer Fredette or Klay Thompson with this pick.
15. Indiana Pacers, Jimmer Fredette
School: Brigham Young
The Pacers need a bona fide scorer next to Danny Granger, and they will find it at No. 15 with one of the most prolific scorers in NCAA history.
Indiana could use someone to play alongside Darren Collison, which is why Fredette fits perfect at this pick.
16. Philadelphia 76ers, Markieff Morris
The lesser of the Morris twins will fit right at home in Philadelphia.
Honestly, it comes down to the fact that the 76ers need a big man, and Morris is as close as it gets, unless they plan on reaching for Donatas Motiejunas or Kenneth Faried.
17. New York Knicks, Klay Thompson
School: Washington St.
The Knicks will need a guard to play in Mike D'Antoni's system, and Thompson would fit in perfectly.
He has the ability to play the point guard, but will most likely make his home at shooting guard for the NBA.
The Knicks will be looking to re-energize their fanbase with an athletic guard. Whether they choose to take advantage of that with Thompson or hit and miss with that in Josh Selby, is up to them.
18. Washington Wizards, Josh Selby
After picking Kawhi Leonard at No. 6, the Wizards will want to address the 3 and 4 positions, since Nick Young is heading for free agency.
Enter Josh Selby. His upside is huge, but his play at Kansas has some scratching their heads as to what type of a player he can potentially be.
Selby will play alongside John Wall, and rival for time with another case of young potential in Jordan Crawford.
19. Charlotte Bobcats, Marshon Brooks
Brooks has been wowing the scouts in workouts this offseason, and the Bobcats could use a definitive scorer at the guard position.
With the Bobcats taking Tristan Thompson with their first pick in the draft and solidifying their SF position, they will be looking for Brooks to bolster the backcourt.
20. Minnesota Timberwolves, Donatas Motiejunas
This one is pretty simple. The Wolves need size under the basket, and if Motiejunas is available, they will take him.
Motiejunas' size and physical assets are overwhelming to some, but the 19-year-old is still a project in the NBA. If coached right and given time, he could become a key force under the rim in the future.
21. Portland Trailblazers, Kenneth Faried
School: Morehead State
ESPN long ago said that Faried was on the Blazers' radar last year, so if Faried is available at No. 21, which many think he will, then how can they pass up on him?
Faried is the all-time leading rebounder in NCAA history, and players that can rebound well in college have shown to rebound well in the NBA.
Faried, although undersized, plays much bigger than he looks with his enormous wingspan. Think of him as a DeJuan Blair form San Antonio, who went on to have a very good rookie season.
22. Denver Nuggets, Tobias Harris
At this point, Denver will be going with the best available player, and Harris is just that.
Harris can play the 3 or 4 in the NBA, and although he is not a very good offensive threat, he is very well-rounded when it comes to the entire game of basketball.
Harris has the potential to be a spark off the bench for the Nuggets.
23. Houston Rockets, Reggie Jackson
School: Boston College
Although Kyle Lowry and Goran Dragic are satisfactory at the point guard position for the Rockets, Houston will be looking for an athletic player to push those two. Jackson fits just that with an athletic skill set.
Honestly, the Rockets will be taking the best available point guard at this pick, and Jackson is all that is left at this position for awhile.
24. Oklahoma City Thunder, Davis Bertans
By the way Bertans is impressing everyone in workouts, it will be hard for the Thunder to pass him up.
Sure, he is a definite project, but his shooting and offensive prowess are gifts with his length at the small forward position.
25. Boston Celtics, Nikola Vucevic
The Celtics need length, and they need it now. After parting ways with center Kendrick Perkins, Boston has needed an inside presence to take down the teams of the Eastern Conference.
Unfortunately for them, they will not find it for the next few year.
They will draft size in Vucevic, but the timetable for his impact in the league could be a good ways away. Either way, this is the best available option at No. 25.
26. Dallas Mavericks, Nikola Mirotic
Everyone will be passing on Mirotic because of the fact that he will not be able to play in the NBA for some time because of his massive buyout. So Dallas will be thinking about the future here.
Mirotic's measurements are professional and this is quite a steal at No. 26, but the fact that teams will have to wait to get him to the NBA may scare some.
27. New Jersey Nets, Justin Harper
Harper is a much underrated talent in this draft, and this is a huge steal at No. 27.
The Nets need both a 3 and 4 to bolster their depth on the court and Harper gives them both.
There is huge upside for this player that can really flourish if given the opportunity in New Jersey.
28. Chicago Bulls, Tyler Honeycutt
29. San Antonio Spurs, Charles Jenkins
We are accustomed to seeing unknown players become borderline superheroes in San Antonio. Jenkins may be another one of those.
He will help bolster the backcourt and has the ability to backup Tony Parker at the point guard if necessary.
30. Chicago Bulls, Jeremy Tyler
Team: Tokyo Apache
What is a 6'11" 263-pound behemoth doing playing in Tokyo? Read up on his story on the internet if you are interested.
Tyler's potential has been through the roof since he was in high school, but bad decisions have plagued him since then.
He is a project, but one that can pay large dividends. The Bulls passed on him at No. 28, but will not at No. 30.