2008 NBA Mock Lottery In-Depth



By David K.

1. Chicago- Michael Beasley, PF, Kansas State
Bulls hit the jackpot!  For a team that I picked to be in the NBA Finals at the beginning of the season (yeah, my bad), this should be a huge boost for Chicago.  It is funny that their two needs are a low-post scoring threat (Beasley) and a point guard (Rose).  Despite Rose being a Chicago boy, I think the edge goes to Beasley because an offensive-minded power forward is a bigger need (this is my initial thought, I’m sure my mind will change 100 times in the next month).  Yes, the Bulls have a plethora of young forwards…

PG: Hinrich
SG: Gordon/Hughes
SF: Deng/Sefolosha
PF: Gooden/Nocioni/Thomas
C: Noah/Gray  

…and with Chris Duhon a free-agent, Rose would definitely make sense.  But I really think it is time for Chicago to make a big trade by packaging Gordon/Thomas/Deng/or Nocioni and acquire a proven all-star caliber commodity.  

My prediction: Whatever happens with this pick will directly result in a big off-season trade involving the Bulls.  Again, Beasley makes a lot of sense seeing that Drew Gooden is in the final year of his deal and Luol Deng’s and Ben Gordon’s rookie contracts expire and both will want a big payday, though neither deserve it quite yet.  Any of those players could be very attractive to a team looking to clear some cap space.


2. Miami- Derrick Rose, PG, Memphis
In my opinion, the Heat should be praying that the Bulls draft Beasley.  By “settling” for Rose, Miami gets a ball-handler who can run the offense and break, thus taking some pressure off Dwyane Wade who has had the ball in his hands far too often the past two seasons.  Having Rose around would also help Wade take less of a beating which should keep him in the line-up rather than on the bench in a suit and tie.  A core of Rose, Wade, Shawn Marion, and Udonis Haslem doesn’t thrust South Beach back into the NBA Finals, but should definitely be good enough to land the Heat back into the playoffs. 

If the Heat end up with Beasley, they would be in a situation to go with a small ball line-up, but would have to find a point guard not named Marcus Banks, Jason Williams, or Chris Quinn to run the offense.

3. Minnesota- Brook Lopez, C, Stanford
Imagine a young front-court of Lopez and Al Jefferson to build around for the next 10-12 years.  Not too shabby if you are a T-Wolves fan.  In already having young guards like Randy Foye, Corey Brewer, and Rashad McCants, a post presence is the way to go.  If the T-Wolves think O.J. Mayo will be a franchise changing-type guard, then he could very easily be the pick.  But adding some size alongside Big Al seems like the road to take.

4. Seattle- O.J. Mayo, G, USC
If the Sonics don’t select a guard I would be shocked.  The Luke Ridnour/Earl Watson duo at point guard is a joke.  Adrian Griffin and Damien Wilkins are the only options at the two spot since rookies Kevin Durant and Jeff Green are better suited playing the forward spots.  A young nucleus of Mayo, Green, and Durant would be a very nice building tool for Seattle, or Oklahoma City, or wherever this franchise ends up.  If the Sonics don’t go with Mayo, I would expect Arizona PG Jarryd Bayless to be the pick.

5. Memphis- Anthony Randolph, F, LSU
When you look at the Grizzlies’ roster, they have three young point guards (Mike Conley Jr, Javaris Crittenton, and Kyle Lowry), two talented wing players (Mike Miller and Rudy Gay), and a worthless Serbian center (Darko Milicic).  If they can re-sign guard Juan Carlos Navarro, a big guy is the definite way to go.  Problem is, there may not be an obvious choice at this point.  Randolph, Kevin Love, or Darrell Arthur would be the most likely candidates, but Randolph’s athleticism makes him a better fit with the Grizzlies up and down tempo.  If Memphis does not plan on re-signing Navarro, Eric Gordon could also be an option at this spot.  Shopping this pick would not be a bad idea considering Memphis could likely move down a few picks and still land Randolph.

6. New York- Jerryd Bayless, PG, Arizona
Now that the Knicks have seemingly competent people in their front office, this pick may not be that off the wall.  Jerryd Bayless is the best option at this point, and seems like the perfect fit with New York being in need of a point guard to replace the soon-to-be-free agent Stephon Marbury.  My only concern with this pick is that Bayless is a shoot-first type of point guard (like Marbury) which does not seem to be the ideal floor general for Mike D’Antoni’s style of offense.  Gordon or Russell Westbrook could be the pick if D’Antoni doesn’t want Bayless leading his team.


7. L.A. Clippers- Eric Gordon, SG, Indiana
The Clips are set up-front with Chris Kaman and a hopefully healthy Elton Brand, and they have Corey Maggette and Al Thornton on the wings.  The biggest need is in the backcourt where Cuttino Mobely is grossly over-paid and Shaun Livingston cannot stay healthy for the life of him.  Gordon would give the Clips a guy who can score in numerous ways.  Westbrook is another option if the Clips want to add a true point guard. 

8. Milwaukee- Danillo Gallinari, SF, Italy
The Bucks are terrible on defense; really, really terrible on defense which doesn’t bode well with new head coach Scott Skiles’ philosophy of being aggressive on that end of the floor.  However, there really is not a defensive-minded player at this point who can make an immediate impact.  I would expect the Bucks to actively shop this pick in hopes of landing someone to protect the rim.  If Milwaukee doesn’t move out of this spot, Gallinari makes the most sense with Desmond Mason having just one year left on his contract and Bobby Simmons being a huge bust as a free-agent signing.

9. Charlotte- Kevin Love, PF, UCLA
The Bobcats were one of the worst rebounding teams in the NBA last year which makes a big man the smart choice.  Love, Arthur, and DeAndre Jordan are all options here but I think MJ and Larry Brown will pick the reliable, NBA-ready option in Love.  He just knows how to play the game and should take some of the load off of Emeka Okafor’s back down low.


10. New Jersey- *Darrell Arthur, PF, Kansas
This might be my “favorite” pick in the draft in terms of perfectly fitting a player on a team.  The Nets have Devin Harris, Vince Carter, and Richard Jefferson locked in as starters on the outside.  They have two young post-players in Josh Boone and Sean Williams who rely more on their rebounding/defensive abilities than offensive talents.  Arthur could step in and be that offensive threat down low as he is dangerous with his back to the basket, but can also step out and hit the mid-range jumper almost in that David West-type of fashion.  If New Jersey doesn’t mind a long-term project, DeAndre Jordan is worth a look. 

11. Indiana- Russell Westbrook, PG, UCLA
When Jamaal Tinsley was sidelined last season, the Pacers did not have a legitimate true point guard option to fill his shoes.  Plus, let’s be honest, Tinsley just isn’t that good and is likely to get involved in an incident outside a nightclub again this off-season, but his contract is so awful that it is pretty much un-movable.  A point guard like Westbrook or D.J. Augustin makes the most sense, but Indiana could also use a young big guy like Jordan or Nevada’s Javale McGee to develop once Jermaine O’Neal’s massive contract comes off the books in 2010.  But in terms of the best available option for now, that’s Westbrook.

12. Sacramento- D.J. Augustin, PG, Texas
Outside of Quincy Douby, the Kings do not have a point guard on their roster as Beno Udrih and Anthony Johnson are both free agents.  Udrih played well for the Kings when Bibby was hurt and then traded, but even if they do re-sign him, a point guard still makes the most sense to add some depth.  However, if Ron Artest opts of his deal, a small forward like Nicolas Batum, Joe Alexander, Donte Greene, or Chase Budinger would all be viable options.

13. Portland- Nicolas Batum, SF, France
The Blazers are set up-front with Greg Oden and LaMarcus Aldridge, and have a tremendous young talent at shooting guard in Brandon Roy.  That makes point guard and small forward their biggest needs.  With Westbrook and Augustin off the board, small forward is the way to go.  Batum is a versatile wing player who may not be ready to contribute right away, but would definitely be a promising piece to the championship puzzle they are trying to build in Portland.  The Blazers could even follow their own lead and leave Batum in Europe another season (like they did with Rudy Fernandez this past year), if Fernandez comes to the NBA.

14. Golden State- *Joe Alexander, F, West Virginia
Alexander seems like a great addition to Nellie-Ball.  He strokes the three, can dribble penetrate, hits pull-up jumpers, and plays effectively with his back to the basket.  With Matt Barnes and Mickael Pietrus free agents, a wing player seems like the logical choice.  Of course, if the Warriors cannot re-sign Monta Ellis, they could look to address the need for a combo guard although there is nobody like that available at this spot.  Slanging Syracuse small forward Donte Greene could be a more athletic alternative to Alexander.

On the brink of the lottery:
DeAndre Jordan, C, Texas A&M
Javale McGee, C, Nevada
Donte Greene, SF, Syracuse
Chris Douglas-Roberts, G/F, Memphis
Kosta Koufos, C, Ohio State
Brandon Rush, G/F. Kansas
*Marreese Speights, PF, Florida
*Chase Budinger, G/F, Arizona

*Underclassmen yet to hire an agent


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  1. paulmbanks says

    fair and balanced coverage here at TSB, one columnist gives you the case for Chi drafting Beasley, another presents the case for picking Rose

  2. Greg Vandeventer says

    Beasley would be a great choice ……and I luv the luvabull pic thrown in there!

  3. paulmbanks says

    Yeah, Shannon (the Luvabull pictured) is to her squad what LeBron is to his team. plus she has a masters degree and is working on her Phd at Depaul.

  4. Jason Moe says

    I think the Bulls should go with Beasley, But I really do like Rose too..I can see myself switching back and forth a little…Last night I said Rose, but now I say beasley…Even though Bayless is my boy..haha

    The bulls should trade Gooden, Deng, or Thomas..Paxson did say Deng is untouchable, but what the heck is Paxson smoking?? Deng has back issues and foot problems..Get rid of him…

  5. David K. says

    I’m starting to lean towards the Bulls trading Hinrich before the draft for a low post scorer and maybe a vet PG… then drafting Rose… I still say either way if they draft Rose or Beasley, there will be a big trade coming in Chi…

  6. Andy Weise says

    Isn’t it funny how opinions change so quickly? After the lottery night I felt like the Bulls should take Beasley, Wolves take Lopez and Eric Gordon goes back to school (JOKE)

    Now I’m thinking the Bulls are best trading off Hinrich to draft Rose, Wolves NEED Mayo, although it’s funny Miami is letting out rumors they might take Mayo themselves to pair with Wade. DeAndre Jordan is getting whispers of promises in the top 10 or even into the 3-7 range, which is CRAZY!

  7. David K. says

    DeAndre Jordan couldn’t even crack the top five at Texas A&M… but based on his “tremendous upside potential” and individual workouts (which are both stupid things to judge a basketball player by), I’m hearing the same things… whoever drafts him better know they are getting zero contribution from him for the next two seasons…

  8. Peter Christian says

    Can someone find a realistic way for O.J. Mayo to end up with the Nuggets? What would be more fun to watch than Mayo-A.I.-Melo combining for 90 shots and 120 points?

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