The John Wall Lott, er, NBA Draft Lottery has come and gone. The Washington Wizards won. Thirteen other teams didn’t. However, one team’s loss of the lottery hurts them more than any of the other 12 losers. The Minnesota Timberwolves NEEDED to get the first or the second pick. That necessity however, is, of course, why the Wolves had no chance at landing one of the top two picks in this year’s draft. Needless to say, landing the 4th pick in this year’s draft means certain doom for anyone who had hopes that this draft class was going to turn the franchise around.
by Peter Christian
My lack of faith is not as hate based as you might think (if you know me). I’ve said my piece plenty about David Kahn’s ability to assemble a “League” worthy team, and yes I certainly still believe everything I’ve ever said about the man. But my suspicion of Kahn’s incompetence is not the reason why I think the difference between the top 2 picks and the 4th overall pick is so detrimental to the Timberwolves. That reason is far more deep rooted than just one bad GM.
The 2010 NBA Draft, at present is headlined by one amazing point guard and another outstanding basketball player that is so versatile that he could help nearly every team in the NBA. John Wall and Evan Turner are head and shoulders above the rest of the draft class. They are franchise changing players and the Timberwolves could absolutely use one of them right now. By falling out of the top 2 picks due to the lottery the Timberwolves organization now falls out of the “no brainer zone” into an area where they must rely on instinct, analysis and foresight to make their first pick in the 2010 NBA draft. Falling out of that “no brainer zone” is completely detrimental to the Wolves because their history of 1st round selections are among the poorest in the league’s history. Names like Donyell Marshall, Felton Spencer, Luc Longley, Rashad McCants and Isaiah Rider ring through Timberwolves fans heads like a fork on a chalkboard. Throw in last season’s draft day disaster and it’s just a pattern of bad luck and poor foresight on draft night that has hampered the franchise.
Being in the aforementioned “no brainer zone” would have meant the Wolves would’ve been bringing in either Turner or Wall and not having to let the front office get in its own way. Now, because they aren’t going to be picking 1st or 2nd they’ll be giving attention to the next tier of rookies that is made up of Derrick Favors, DeMarcus Cousins and Wesley Johnson. Picking 4th means one of those guys will be gone too. Not to be a “woe is me” type fan but if there is a bust among those players the Timberwolves will find him and fall in love with him. If there’s a guy that starts inexplicably rising on draft boards regardless of the question marks surrounding his game, he’ll end up with the Timberwolves. Or there’s the possibility that the Timberwolves do in fact select a potential rookie of the year candidate or a future hall of famer, but in that circumstance, the front office will likely trade that prospect for another prospect that surely doesn’t pan out nearly half as well.
It’s not about David Kahn, it’s about history. It’s about a pattern of let downs that makes a fan base lose faith in the organization. I wouldn’t ever think to throw out a term like “cursed” in regards to a franchise that’s only been around for 20 years but when it comes to draft day, it might be better if the Wolves just sat this one out.
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