Phoenix Suns Mock Draft: Austin Rivers at #13?

NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 15: Austin Rivers #0 of the Duke Blue Devils drives the ball against Branden Dawson #22 of the Michigan State Spartans during the 2011 State Farm Champions Classic at Madison Square Garden on November 15, 2011 in New York City. (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)

The boys at SB are talking mock draft even as the NBA playoffs are still happening, which, I suppose is what Mr. Babby should be doing as well. Tom Z has the Phoenix Suns taking Austin Rivers at #13. His logic?:

Part of Robert Sarver's campaign to begin trolling various members of the Boston Celtics franchise.

What do we know about Rivers? Well, if you are like me, you may not have paid attention to those smug Duke Blue Devils throughout the season. So here is what Draft Express had to say:

Standing 6-4 with a wiry frame that he's added some bulk to since his days at Winter Park High School, Rivers is a bit undersized for a NBA shooting guard, but compensates with a 6'7 wingspan. Athletically, the 19 year-old guard lacks elite strength and explosiveness as a leaper in traffic, but has very good quickness and fluidity, which he maximizes with the timing of his first step and ball-handling skills...His swagger, skill level, and scoring ability were unmistakable, even early on, but scouts also got an eyeful of his average decision-making, poor body language in the face of adversity and bouts with inefficiency from the perimeter...Rivers has the potential to be a terrific scoring threat in the NBA, even if the rest of his game still needs to be rounded out.


A very young, under-sized 2? HM. Call me skeptical. Could he be converted into a PG like his father? Some thoughts:

1. Why would the Suns, especially if Nash goes elsewhere, pick up a very young SG in the draft? Unless they had plans to make a run at Deron Williams (or other), you'd be looking at Sebastian Telfair running the point for the next few years?

but

2. Having some young depth and a scoring threat at the 2 IS a necessity. Assuming Shannon Brown leaves, which I am 98% sure he does for phat contract on a rich, crappy team. But would a 20 year old who is by most accounts, considered fairly "raw" be ready to play 15 minutes a game? Of course the Suns could sign a stop gap for a year.

3. Some say that Celtic coach Doc Rivers really really wants his boy on his team. But will it be his team next season. I suppose much is riding on how deep the Celts go in the playoffs. It's an aging team that is most likely headed towards the dreaded rebuilding phase of life. If Rivers stays, perhaps they look to make a deal to grab Austin, ahead of the Suns or ask for a Rajon Rondo-draft and trade. Hell, maybe they send over the Rondo for the rights to Rivers. Have fun with that exploration.

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