I know that all the talk regarding our pick seems to revolve around trades, but there hasn't been a lot of talk about the players anyone actually wants to draft. This is a deep draft and there will still be a lot of talent to choose from at 18.
Here are the top five guys that I'd like to see end up in Washington. I'll leave Dorsey out to hopefully spark some discussion about other players.
How would you rank your five? For my five, I'll keep it to players that are likely to be around or who have a chance of falling. I'm not focusing so much on need here, just guys that I like, who would fit in well with our team.
1. Ty Lawson PG, North Carolina - We wouldn't need him to score a lot off of the bench. He may be a great third PG should Arenas' knee continue to bother him, or if Antonio Daniels goes down. I'd say that's always a possibility considering the way he gets after it during games. He would look very nice next to NY on the second team. Lawson may be a bit undersized but he will always be one of, if not the, fastest guys on the court. Combine that with great floor leadership and that's a hell of a point guard. His outside shot needs work, but I don't think it's too far fetched for this guy to develop a nice mid-range game. Great finisher.
2. Marreese Speights PF, Florida - This guy must have had one of the more strange seasons of any player with all of the Billy Donovan drama. First, his coach goes to the NBA, then he's back. He kicks the whole team out of practice and wont let them wear Florida apparel. Odd. Regardless of the drama, this guy had a lot of pressure on him as the best player on a young, championship defending Florida squad. He's only 19 and he did pretty well for himself. It wasn't enough to get a third straight championship, but enough to draw numerous comparisons to Elton Brand.
3. Chris Douglas Roberts SG, Memphis - I see a lot of Josh Howard in CDR. In comparison, Howard has better size and a more consistent jumper from deep. CDR is superior in his ball handling and ability to get shots for himself and his teammates. Bottom line, this guy loves the big game and always wants the ball when the game is on the line, which is what I love about him. He plays tough, aggressive defense and he doesnt gamble a lot. I wouldnt imagine there being much of an adjustment coming from Calipari's offense. Douglas-Roberts could contribute right away.
4. Nicolas Batum SF, France - Now that Pech is here, and JCN is watching his buddy chase a title from Memphis (single tear) - it may be time to restock overseas. Batum is a baller from France who needs a couple more years under his belt before he's ready for the LeBrons and Paul Pierce's of the NBA. His motor is his biggest concern. Coaches are frustrated at his "pretty-good" output because he is often the best player on the floor. He could develop into a great defender. Chad Ford compares him to Mickael Pietrus but the ceiling should be much higher.
If there's not a trade to Ernie's liking or a player that he sees chipping something in of value this next season, I expect him to re-up our talent overseas.
5. Chase Budinger SF, Arizona - Budinger is a phenomenal athlete who possesses range beyond the NBA three. He's a great finisher, and one of the best dunkers in basketball. Sorry to be repetitive, but it be too fun to watch Antonio run a 3 on 1 fast break with NY and Budinger infront of him. We'd have one of the more athletic second units in the league. I'd put him higher but he doesnt play great defense.
5b. Mario Chalmers PG, Kansas - I debated putting him in instead of Budinger, but I am hoping that enough teams worry about his ability to run the point so he slips to the second round. You can't discount the tournament this guy had. He's a gamer just like some of the other guys I named. I love his game, especially his defense. If he couldn't run the point, I wouldn't mind putting him in at the two. He could easily jump right in as a Roger Mason type player for us, but with much better defense. Best case scenario...Lindsey Hunter with a better shot?
I wouldn't mind if Ernie worked a deal to move back into the early second round for a guy like Chalmers. If we did that and used our other second rounder on a guy like Dorsey (sorry), it would instantly improve our defense and make up for the shortcomings of our other players.
Other guys I like a lot and would be thrilled to see drop to us, but don't think they will - DJ Augustine, Kevin Love, Russell Westbrook, Joe Alexander.
Laugh and point...