2011 NBA Mock Draft: Kyrie Irving & Enes Kanter Will Rock the City of Cleveland
The 2011 NBA Draft is a mere ten days away, ang things are continually heating up.
The Cleveland Cavaliers were graced with the first and fourth overall picks and see these picks as the necessary ingredients to bring this team back to championship contention.
Cavs fans can now take a deep breath due to the fact that former star Lebron James lost in the NBA Finals with the Miami Heat. Now that the finals are over, we will now focus our attention to the future stars of the NBA.
In this Mock Draft, I will go through the first round lottery picks (without trades) for each team. Enjoy!
#1: Cleveland Cavaliers
The basketball gods shined down on the Cavaliers this year, granting them to the keys of one the best point guards to come out in recent years. The name is Kyrie Irving, and the former Duke Blue Devil point guard will be the Cavs' number one overall selection.
Irving is not the fastest player but plays solid defense, and Baron Davis is not the long term answer.
Look for the Cavs to move Ramon Sessions for extra picks if they do go with Irving.
Cleveland Cavaliers: Kyrie Irving
#2: Minnesota Timberwolves
With the number two overall pick, I could easily see the Timberwolves trading down a few slots due to the fact that they have two young forwards in Kevin Love and Michael Beasley.
If the Wolves do select Williams, he will provide much needed bench help and could potentially push Kevin Love to the center position if head coach Kurt Rambis wants all three on the court at the same time.
Minnesota Timberwolves: Derrick Williams
#3: Utah Jazz
The Jazz need a point guard, and luckily, Brandon Knight falls right into their lap. Knight was a standout for the Kentucky Wildcats this year and could potentially play shooting guard as well. Knight shot 42 percent from the field while averaging 17.2 points per game during his freshman year in the Blue Grass State.
Devin Harris could be trade bait for the Jazz, but I see him as being a mentor to the young Knight. Look for the Jazz to trade Harris mid-season if Knight excels at the point guard position.
Utah Jazz: Brandon Knight
#4: Cleveland Cavaliers
Enes Kanter had to sit out the 2011 campaign due to receiving funds of $30,000 from his Turkish based team, but this is still not going to stop the 6-11 265 pound center from going fourth overall to the Cavs.
Kanter is not known for his shot blocking abilities, but I do see him being a physical presence down low that the Cavaliers desperately need. Kanter also has mid-range shooting ability but is still one of the biggest mysteries in this years draft.
In the NBA, players with his size and speed are hard to come by, which is why I see the Cavs taking a chance on Kanter.
Cleveland Cavaliers: Enes Kanter
#5: Toronto Raptors
With Kyrie Irving and Brandon Knight off the board, the Raptors will have to reach (in my opinion) on Kemba Walker. Walker became a household name in the 2011 NCCA tournament, leading the Huskies to the National Title.
Walker could learn under Jose Calderon for a while and then fulfill the starting role. Walker reminds me of Brandon Jennings due to his size and quickness and could really become a spark for the Raptors.
Toronto Raptors: Kemba Walker
#6: Washington Wizards
With Enes Kanter off the board, I see the Wizards going with big man Jonas Valanciunas.
The Wizards already have two solid big men in JaVale Mcgee and Andray Blatche, but Valanciunas seems to be a pure center. He has a 7-6 wingspan, and if he can add some size, I see him working well with John Wall.
Washington Wizards: Jonas Valanciunas
#7: Sacramento Kings
While some people may think this is a reach for Kawhi Leonard, I respectfully disagree.
Leonard does not excel in one area; he simply has a number of tools that could become very significant if he continues to progress. Along with his energy and rebounding, Leonard also has good court vision and the ability to use his dribble to make plays for others, something he showed while executing the pick and roll this season.
Sacramento Kings: Kawhi Leonard
#8: Detroit Pistons
"Plays with lot of emotion ... A competitive player that hustles for loose balls and brings energy on the court" ... That is what scouts are saying about Jan Vesely, which is why he is the perfect fit for an aging Pistons team. Vesely can play multiple positions and has begun to develop a 3 ball.
This guy is very talented, and he reminds me of a young Andrei Kirilenko.
Detroit Pistons: Jan Vesely
#9: Charlotte Bobcats
The Charlotte Bobcats seem to have a viable starter at every position, except for center. Kwyame Brown did show some promise at the end of last year, but the team is still looking to upgrade.
Bismack Biyombo is a mix between a smaller version of Dwight Howard and Serge Ibaka due to the fact that both started off as great defensive of players that needed time to work on their offensive ability.
Biyombo could solidify the Bobcats' roster, but don't expect him to see the court in the NBA this year. He will most likely stay with his professional team for one more season before making his way to the United States.
Charlotte Bobcats: Bismack Biyombo
#10: Milwaukee Bucks
The Bucks are one of the deepest teams in the Eastern Conference, and I expect them to make a hard push for the playoffs if they can stay healthy. Forward Drew Gooden is a viable option as of now, so drafting Tristan Thompson to learn and groom under him would be a perfect situation for the young forward.
Thompson was very inconsistent during his freshman campaign at Texas but showed signs of greatness, acquiring 10 double-doubles.
Milwaukee Bucks: Tristan Thompson
#11: Golden State Warriors
Donates Motiejunas surprised a lot of people when he pulled out of last year's draft and then tore it up in the Italian league this season. He's a great shooter, both from the floor and beyond the arc, and appears to be one of the more NBA-ready players in the draft.
Don't be surprised if the Warriors trade up to make a push for Kanter or Valanciuas as well, because Ekpe Udoh may or may not be their starting center of the future. However, Motiejunas will push him if he ends up in Golden State.
Golden State Warriors: Donates Motiejunas
#12: Utah Jazz
I think Singleton lands in the same number 12 spot that his former Florida State buddy Christian Ponder landed at during this year's NFL Draft, and yes, it will surprise some people. Singleton has the ceiling of becoming a player like Gerald Wallace, which any team would take at this point.
His rebounding skills are great and if Singleton can develop into a reliable spot-up shooter, he'll have a long and productive NBA career.
Utah Jazz: Chris Singleton
#13: Phoenix Suns
Kenneth Faried would be the perfect compliment to 3-point shooting center Channing Frye due to the fact that he excels at rebounding the basketball. Faried ended his senior season averaging 14.5 rebounds a game while posting 17.3 points per game, which are extremely solid numbers for a big man.
I think a young talented rebounder like Faried fits in perfectly with an aging Suns roster and will provide a spark of energy down low.
Phoenix Suns: Kenneth Faried
#14: Houston Rockets
Another Texas player comes off the board here at pick number 14, and he goes by the name of Jordan Hamilton.
Hamilton may be the best pure shooter in the game, but it may take some time grooming him before he becomes a viable option. The Rockets could easily add another forward to the mix, and Hamilton is a home grown talent.
Hamilton reminds me of Bobcats forward Stephen Jackson and Atlanta Hawks forward Joe Johnson because all three have great jump shots and are built the same way. The Rockets need a pure shooter, and that's exactly what Hamilton will give them in the future.
Houston Rockets: Jordan Hamilton