Before I get trash talked by Barnes and Drummond supporters, I just want to say this isn't just about talent but a conclusion I've reached given the Wizards situation. Honestly, I like Barnes and Drummond a lot, and I can see how they can fit with this team. In a perfect world, we would draft Beal, MKG, or T-Rob with the third pick (my pick is Beal, but the other two are completely fine), and somehow move up back in the top 8 and draft Drummond or Barnes. But that's not happening, so we need to be really careful with this third pick, as we have little room for error. It's about time Ernie shows Wall that this franchise can become a winning franchise, and I'm afraid that if he doesn't then Wall might leave (although I trust Wall to be the loyal type).
Why not Drummond?
The answer to that question is simple, as a lot of people already know. Drummond is a project who's going to need at least 3 years to have a large impact for any team. I don't buy that argument where people say "if we were going to draft Drummond why didn't we just keep Javale." For one, Javale was becoming a free agent. Two, I doubt Drummond is an air-head like Mcgee. However, Drummond's impact wise on the court will be similar to that of Javale, or worse. That's not what the team needs right now to win. On top of that, Drummond's weak defensive rebounding numbers given his size is a serious concern. We already have guys who can grab the offensive board rather well compared to defensive rebounds. If we are going to draft a big man, defensive rebounds should be the stat Ernie is looking at. So no to Drummond with the third pick, we need someone with talent that can also have impact on the team immediately.
Why not Harrison Barnes?
This is where it becomes complicating. I watched Barnes play a lot, and honestly, I love his game. I think he'd be a great fit next to Wall, and I do believe his game is more fit for the NBA than college. I just don't think he's going to be a star. The first knock on him is that he can't create his own shot. A lot of people already know that he's struggled without a good point guard. That being said that's not really a concern since we do have a good point guard. As a player, Barnes is not so effective moving without the ball. He's not a great cutter, or he doesn't use screens that well.
I would have been fine with those two weaknesses to pick him at the third pick considering his strengths (elite athleticism, elite shooting ability) are made for the NBA. My biggest concern with Barnes is that he has no court-vision. I honestly think court-vision is one of the more underrated category that is actually one of the more important factor to consider. Harrison Barnes had just EIGHT games in his two years in UNC where he posted more than two assists.
Yes, I know that within the system they played it was hard for Barnes to rack up assists. However, when seeing Barnes play i often noticed that he doesn't really hit the open man, especially inside. There were several times, including the PnR, where Barnes could have hit someone inside for an easy bucket, but he settles for the jump-shot. A lot of skill-sets in the NBA can be improved, including shooting, ball-handling, defense, and etc. But court-vision is something you can't really improve, you're sort of born with it like athleticism. I can't think of an NBA team that had a small forward as their 2nd best player who didn't have court vision and won it all. Since we should be drafting for the 2nd best player for the coming future of this franchise, Barnes is not the pick to make at #3.