Prada covered most of my thoughts on tonight's draft, but I just can't let one of the biggest dates on the NBA Calendar go by without saying something so here goes...
For me, this draft is more exciting than last year, even though we're two spots down and the talent pool doesn't seem to be nearly as deep. Last year, there were about 5 or 6 guys that mocks had the Wiz taking and of that group, only 3 or 4 seemed reasonable. This year, I'd say there's about 10 to 12 players that at some point or another have been mentioned as possibilities, and of that group I'd say at least 8 are fairly reasonable. That together with the possibility of a trade (maybe this one?) should make things very exciting tonight.
For what it's worth, here's how I'd break down the players that could be around at pick #18:
Players that I'd be thrilled with:
Players that I like, but only if we trade down to get them:
Players that I'd be OK with:
Players that I like, just not on the Wizards:
Players I hope that we avoid like death:
Sidenote: Make sure you have your best Dr. Hibbert or Superintendent Chalmers quotes ready in case the Wizards end up taking Roy or Mario.
As far as draft strategy goes, I'd say take the best big available at #18 (between Hibbert, Thompson, and Speights) and then get a good, defensive PG at #47. Even though Mario is my favorite prospect at #18, and in my mind, the most sure-fire pick of the four in my upper-tier, the reality is that our best shot to improve our low-post defense is with #18. There are Sr. Prolopos out there that could give us a boost at the 4 defensively, but I just don't see anyone at pick 47 that can improve our D at center, where it's more needed.
It's hard to pass on someone at 18 like Chalmers who I think could really help us, and pass on someone like Richard Hendrix at 47, who I think is going to be a steal, but we have to address our issues with low-post defense and perimeter defense, and going big at 18 and small at 47 is the only way I see us addressing both.
But that's just my two cents on what we should do. Feel free to disagree. As for some other thoughts on the draft...
- Teams that scare me because I have no idea what they have planned tonight: Miami, Indiana, Portland, Golden State, Seattle, and Utah.
- The last player in the green room will be: DeAndre Jordan. Gotta love those lottery players that can't start for their college team!
- The sure fire first rounder that ends up getting drafted in the second round will be: Donte Greene. Just call it a gut feeling.
- Your annual "The Wizards could use some work at this draft thing" piece comes courtesy of: Dan Steinberg.
- The player that's most likely to get reached for is: Alexis Ajinca. Somebody's going to do it, let's just hope it isn't us.
Lots of crazy things are going to go down tonight, and nobody knows what's going to happen, but at least we know it will be better than '01.