Mocking the Vote
The 2008 SBN Mock Draft is set to begin on Monday, June 16th. This is the chance for all of you armchair GM's to put your keyboard where your mouth is and show the pro's who's boss.
The host for the Mock Draft is Matt at Ridiculous Upside. So go there to keep tabs on things until the Suns pick comes up.
The rules are simple. No trades.
Here's the full draft schedule and picks so far:
1. Blog-A-Bull - Derrick Rose
2. Peninsula is Mightier - Michael Beasley
3. Canis Hoopus - OJ Mayo
4. (Working on the Sonics rep) - Eric Gordon
5. 3 Shades of Blue - Kevin Love
6. Posting and Toasting - Russell Westbrook (losers! - sez ZonaFlash)
7.ClipsNation - Jerryd Bayless
8. BrewHoop 10:30AM - Anthony Randolph
9. Queen City Hoops 1PM - Joe Alexander (dang!)
10. Nets Daily 3:30PM - Brook Lopez
11. Indy Cornrows - DJ Augustin
12. Sacramento Kings- Sactown Royalty: Marreese Speights
13. Blazers Edge 8:00AM
14. Golden State of Mind 10:30AM
15. Bright Side of the Sun 1PM
16. (working on it) 3:30PM
17. (sorting out between the bazillion good Raptors blogs) 6PM
18. Bullets Forever 8:30PM
19. Waiting For Next Year 8AM
20. PickAxe and Roll 10:30 AM
21. Nets Daily 1PM
22. 3rd Quarter Collapse 3:30PM
23. SLC Dunk 6PM
24. (Sonics again, working on it) 8:30PM
25. The Dream Shake 8AM
26. Pounding The Rock (?) 10:30AM
27. At The Hive 1PM
28. 3 Shades of Blue 3:30PM
29. already extended offers to the two you'd expect me to extend offers to. 6PM
30. Green Bandwagon 8:30PM
For a quick recap of the final draft order go here and for a handy compulation of early mock draft speculation you can check this out from the T-Wolves blog (and if anyone has this draft thing down its the T-wolves fans).
Here's the names that currently projected around the 15th slot (in no particular order):
Darrell Arthur PF
Age: 20, 6'9", 215 lbs.
D.J. Augustin PG
Age: 20, 5'11", 175 lbs.
Joe Alexander SF/PF
Age: 21, 6'8", 230 lbs.
West Virginia, Junior
Nicolas Batum SF
Age: 19, 6'8", 214 lbs.
Le Mans Sarthe Basket,
Donte Greene SF/PF
Age: 20, 6'10", 220 lbs.
Kosta Koufos C
Age: 19, 7'1", 245 lbs.
Ohio State, Freshman
Chase Budinger SG/SF
Age: 20, 6'7", 190 lbs.
Russell Westbrook PG/SG
Age: 19, 6'3", 187 lbs.
JaVale McGee C
20 years old; 7'0"; 237 lbs.
Marreese Speights PF/C
20 years old; 6'10"; 245 lbs.
Brandon Rush SG/SF
22 years old; 6'7"; 211 lbs.
DeAndre Jordan C
19 years old; 7'0"; 260 lbs.
Texas A&M, Freshman
Robin Lopez PF/C
20 years old; 7'0"; 255 lbs.
Anthony Randolph SF/PF
18 years old; 6'11"; 220 lbs.
While we have all been glued to the drama that is the NBA in June, the Suns have been playing the role of kids in the candy store as they worked out players in advance of the upcoming draft. You can catch some video, interviews and the like at the ever awesome suns.com site.
So far, the Suns have had in some potential PG's DJ Augustin and Mario Chalmers and some interesting bigs such as Javale McGee, Nathan Jawai, Marreese Speights and Robin Lopez (who looks exactly like Andy Verajao in all ways imaginable).
Today Joe Alexander, Chase Buddinger and a few others are scheduled .
I have to tip my hat to all of you that can make any sense out of this. I watch these guys in video clips and interviews, read all the little recaps and occasionally listen to their interviews and I am left feeling I would like 8 out of 10 of the guys I am seeing. They all seem so great at this stage in the process until next season when you put them on the court and ask them to score against Tim Duncan or stop Monta Ellis.
To sit on the sidelines of this process and make any sense at all about what separates the upside potential of JaVale McGee from the court IQ of Robin Lopez is beyond me.
The more I try and sort this all out, the more appreciation I have for the incredible task guys like Dave Griffin are faced with. You get one pick in this high stakes game and you are faced with a tremendous amount of information that we fans will never see. The numbers, The skill set. The intangibles. The fit.
I have hired a lot of people for a lot of jobs but I am glad the stakes were never this high.
What we fans do know is our team and our needs and we know some numbers. And from that and reading between the lines of what Griffin said in his interviews, here's what I am willing to predict right now:
- The Suns will pick someone and not sell or trade the pick away. I know - I am really out there on this one given that Kerr literally guaranteed as much.
- The Suns will pick a big at the 15th spot. They seem impressed with several including McGee and Lopez and seem inclined to believe that you aren't going to get an NBA backup PG as a rookie at the 15th spot. I agree (as if that matters)
- They feel a need at the 3 which means that they aren't set on the idea of Diaw starting there, with Hill and possibly Giricek backing him up. Still, its hard to imagine that they will pick a wing player this year over a backup center which they so desperately need. Unless perhaps Joe Alexander falls to 15 because he apparently floats above the guys that walk on water.
- Of course, its also worth noting that both Chad Ford and the experts at Draft Express have the Suns picking Brandon Rush with the 15th. What do those guys know that I don't? Pretty much everything including I imagine that picking Rush makes Tucker very expendable.
- Based on the guys the Suns are looking at, I wouldn't be surprised if they end up with another pick late in the first or early in the second round. Perhaps if the Suns do take Rush or Joe-A (how's that for a nickname!) then they package their 2nd round pick (the 18th) with Tucker and try and get another 1st rounder. If it happens, just remember you heard it here first. If it doesn't - you didn't hear it anywhere so what's the difference...
- You don't get the sense that they are looking at top 10 guys which would seem to imply that they have no thoughts of trying to move up. Then again, you had no real thoughts they would trade Marion for Shaq until they did. That's how wild and crazy these guys are.