Matt Babcock is the owner and founder of Babcock Hoops. He is also one of the top NBA Draft analysts out there. Prior to last year’s draft, Matt served as a contributor for Sports Illustrated and The Crossover, providing a series of stories outlining the protocols pertaining to the NBA draft process from the perspective of an NBA agent and the players they represent.
We were lucky enough to get Matt to answer a few questions on the upcoming Wizards’ draft.
Bullets Forever: The Wizards don’t have a 2nd rounder. Which 2nd round picks seem as potential sells and do you think the Wizards should/will be buyers?
Matt Babcock: It depends on which picks are available for them and which players are remaining at that stage. The 2nd round really becomes interesting quickly because of all the moving parts.
BF: Similarly, do you see the Wizards trading down the ninth overall pick to get multiple lower picks?
MB: It definitely could happen but my bet would be that they use the ninth pick to select a player.
BF: Given the Wizards’ inconsistent record of player development, do you have the feel that players are wary of ending up in a Wizards uniform?
MB: I don’t think their record of development is an issue but Washington is in an interesting transition period. My friend, Tommy Sheppard, was named the interim general manager after the team decided to part ways with Ernie Grunfeld.
Until they commit to Tommy long term or decide to bring someone else in they might have some issues with players wanting to be there.
BF: Per Andy Larsen, the Jazz have interviewed or worked out about 80 prospects. Is 80 a typical number? What’s a typical number? It seems the Wizards were more on the order of 30 — is that low?
MB: Eighty is definitely on the high side. 30 seems to be closer to the league norm. Every team operates differently and having their own unique philosophies. There really isn’t one standard way of handling the pre-draft process.
BF: The Jazz did all this work and then ended up actually giving up their 23rd pick ... Do you see them buying/acquiring picks or was it all for the 53rd pick?
MB: There is always a lot that goes on behind the scenes. I think every team looks for good opportunities on draft night. There’s just never a guarantee that there will be any opportunities worth doing or not.
BF: Would you say that Utah Jazz are sort of the gold standard for scouting/drafting?
MB: Utah has a very well respected front office with Dennis Lindsay, Justin Zanik and David Morway. Generally, a good scouting department falls in line with good leadership and Utah is certainly top notch in that area.
Thanks again to Matt for his time, and let’s see what happens tonight!