Wednesday, July 4, 2012

2012 NBA Draft winners and losers

By Rick Morris
NOTE: Lists are compiled by whether or not teams filled their needs in a significant way.
1 New Orleans: Unibrow AND Austin Rivers to go with Eric Gordon?  Sick.  The only question is whether Rivers and Gordon can play any significant minutes on the court together.
2 Golden State: Harrison Barnes is just what the doctor ordered at SF.  And big ol’ Festus in the pivot won’t hurt, either.
3 Sacramento: Their roster is still a mess and they need to move some more Wanna-Be Alpha Dogs to get more clarity, but Thomas Robinson does provide them a needed upgrade at PF.
4 Houston: They didn’t make the big-package move they targeted, but the pieces obtained improve the rotation tremendously.
5T Detroit: Andre Drummond is high-risk, high-reward.  He’s either going to be Eddy Curry or Dwight Howard (can you believe Curry’s now the one with a ring?), but Superman upside at 9 is pretty good.
5T Boston: Those two big men in that spot? Super.
5T Chicago: Marquis Teague keeps the spot warm for Derrick Rose.  Unbelievable.
5T Oklahoma City: The rich get unbelievably richer as Top 5-upside Perry Jones III comes to OKC.
5T Miami: Like the Thunder, the Heat never should have been able to have Arnett Moultrie drop to them.
1 Charlotte: No offense to MKG, who may become an All-Star, but this horrible team is counting on alpha-male offense from their pick from Day One and that’s not his game right now.  He will be exposed and his learning curve may be decimated.  In the right protective surroundings, he could grow into an excellent player.  Let us hope that this atmosphere doesn’t strangle his career in the cradle.
2 Cleveland: If you want Granville errrr Dion Waiters, then trade down and leverage some value in the process.  Trading all their remaining picks for a low-upside body in the pivot wasn’t great value either.
3 Portland: They had two lottery picks and didn’t maximize either for value.
4 Dallas: While Cleveland was foolish to part with their picks to get #17, the Mavs would have been better off keeping it.  Dirk’s only got a few big-time years left and the team must be aggressive in upgrading their rotation around him.
5 Orlando: Andrew Nicholson doesn’t provide the help at either wing position that the Magic needed.

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