Thursday, June 27, 2013

NBA Mock Draft 2013

1. Cleveland Cavaliers - Nerlens Noel - his rebounding and shot-blocking abilities outweigh the knee injury.

2. Orlando Magic - Victor Oladipo - possibly the best player in the draft and someone to build around.

3. Washington Wizards - Otto Porter - hometown player with polished skills. Easy pick.

4. Charlotte Bobcats - Alex Len - another bust for the Bobcats. They're the Clippers of this decade.

5. Phoenix Suns - Ben McLemore - will be him or Oladip for ROY. Great place for his offense to shine. Will be a great box score filler.

6. New Orleans Pelicans - Trey Burke - more of the score-first PG but will give the team a nice spark.

7. Sacramento Kings - Anthony Bennett - not sure what new ownership is like but they always seem to pick on athletic ability (a la the Raiders) so this makes sense. He's also the best talent left as it drops off here.

8. Detroit Pistons - CJ McCollum - Dumars improves the backcourt after learning Knight and Stuckey won't work. He'll help Knight and Monroe improve immediately.

9. Minnesota Timberwolves - KentaviousCaldwell-Pope - gives them size at the #2 guard. (I personally like Muhammad)

10. Portland Trail Blazers - Cody Zeller - good insurance should Hickson leave. Was potential top pick last year and good value. Could also swap with next pick.

11. Philadelphia 76ers - Steven Adams - Adios Andrew Bynum.

12. Oklahoma City Thunder - Kelly Olynyk - Perkins might get amnestied so this is good option for them. Carter-Williams would be good back up for Westbrook, too.

13. Dallas Mavericks - Michael Carter-Williams - nice size for PG and the Mavs always value length.

14. Utah Jazz - Shabazz Muhammad - good scoring option. Could also be Larkin but he should be available later. Muhammad won't.

15. Milwaukee Bucks -Jamaal Franklin- this signals what they think of pending free agents Jennings and Ellis. If Jennings is gone they take Schroeder. If he stays and Ellis is gone, they go Franklin. Picking the latter.

16. Boston Celtics - Giannis Adetokunbo - tough to draft without a coach. Might as well take a risk on future, raw talent.

17. Atlanta Hawks - Mason Plumlee - Ferry loves fellow Duke players.

18. Atlanta Hawks - Sergey Karasev - should be him or Schroeder. He seems a bigger need.

19. Cleveland Cavaliers - Tim Hardaway Jr. (might also be Glen Rice Jr) but should be a scoring, #2 guard to pair with Irving.

20. Chicago Bulls - Gorgui Deng - good backup for Noah after losing Asik last summer.

21. Utah Jazz - Shane Larkin - hard to imagine Schroider still available but think Larkin still ends up in Utah. Feels like they're building a Nuggets-esque, deep, high-octane squad.

22. Brooklyn Nets - Dennis Schroeder - nice steal at PG for Kidd.

23. Indiana Pacers - Isaiah Canaan - backup PG. Could also be Crabbe or Rice Jr. to give them another shooter.

24. New York Knicks - Jeff Withey - gives them some additional size. Chandler can be fragile.

25. Los Angeles Clippers - Tony Snell (especially if they expect to land Afflalo, which sounds likely).

26. Minnesota Timberwolves - Lucas Nogueira - Bebe gives them some athletic size behind Love and Pek.

27. Denver Nuggets - Allen Crabbe - him or Bullock fit the mold and good spot for either one to land.

28. San Antonio Spurs - Reggie Bullock - seems to do all the little things right. Pop should love that and a nice role player and eventual replacement for Ginobli.

29. Oklahoma City Thunder - Ricky Ledo - big guard in case Martin leaves.

30. Phoeniz Suns - Glen Rice Jr. - played at a higher level than anyone in this draft after winning the D-league championship and MVP. He should be a 1st round pick. Very latest he'd go is back to Houston at 35.

NOTE: These picks are without any trades, which there will likely be at least 6-7 of.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Jamarcus Russell to workout for Chicago Bears

JaMarcus Russell will, reportedly, work out for the Chicago Bears this Friday. To date, Russell has been regarded as one of the biggest NFL busts. The 2007 #1 draft pick has all the physical skills but that's about all he has shown.

He started with an abysmal 24 on the Wonderlic score. Not a test to put tons of stock in as John Elway and many others have done poorly. However, if one position heavily weighted intelligence it is the offensive, field-general QB. His work ethic was questioned as he blew off workouts and video reviews. His weight ballooned and quickly became labeled another Al Davis bust.

Something has turned Russell back into that magical run at LSU. He's lost over 50 pounds and appears motivated to prove he can still play in the league. Many teams are looking because of those skills, especially his cannon of an arm. Marshall Faulk, one of my personal all-time favorite players, has even been helping him understand how to read pro defenses.

The Chicago Bears are the latest team to bring him in. If any coach could help Russell, it is the new head coach, Marc Trestman. Ask Rich Gannon who's career he revived. Same for Jake "the Snake" Plummer, Scott Mitchell and Hall of Famer Steve Young who saw improvements. The Bears aren't blessed with backup talent. The revolving door of Caleb Hanie, Jason Campbell and now Josh McCown leaves the Bears very exposed, especially with the sieve they like to refer to as an offensive line.

Personally, I think this is a worthwhile risk. Sign him for the season and maybe even another year or two, provided they are very cap-friendly. He could be a solid backup and who knows, depending on the potential free agency with Cutler. I don't think Cutler is going anywhere, nor do I think Russell is going to be a franchise quarterback worth relying on but what do they have to lose?