NBA draft: Could Wesley Johnson really be the Nets' play at No. 3?

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Thumbnail image for wjohnson.jpgUPDATE 1:01 pm: Now the very well connected Jonathan Givony at DraftExpress is confirming that it looks like the Nets will now take Johnson No. 3. These were is tweets.

Wesley Johnson is moving up to 3, New Jersey, on
our next mock coming shortly. Told New Jersey will take him and go for a
PF in free agency.


Wes is the most ready guy and New Jersey wants to
be competitive next year. Favors does to Minnesota & compliments
Love+Jefferson perfectly


Look for Minnesota to make a move though, possibly trading one of their big men (along with maybe unhappy point guard Jonny Flynn) to get some wing help they need.

12:30 pm: In anticipation of the draft, it’s been widely assumed that after the No.1 and No. 2 picks are used on John Wall and Evan Turner, the No. 3 would be used on either DeMarcus Cousins or Derrick Favors. Both provide very different looks, yet they have good skills and incredible potential. Favors and Cousins are almost universally considered the top bigs in the draft, and would fill a positional need for New Jersey. That’s why there’s one possibility that has yet to be really explored in the draft rumors: what if the Nets forgot about drafting a big man entirely, and drafted Syracuse’s Wesley Johnson?

According to Yahoo’s Adrian Wojnarowski, the Nets could be higher on Johnson than previously thought:

All along, the Wolves had planned to select Johnson at No. 4, and yet the New Jersey Nets are holding serious discussions about drafting the small forward and taking their chances with trying to sign a power forward in free agency. The Nets had long favored Derrick Favors, but are debating now about how long it will take for him to become a regular contributor. New Jersey is still contemplating DeMarcus Cousins, too.

Everything is still heavily in doubt at this point, and it could be that the Nets are simply doing their homework on Johnson. Nothing wrong with that, even if things end up going according to the original plan. That said, if Johnson ends up going to New Jersey somehow, it could end up being a saving grace for the Kings, Warriors, or Pistons. Even if those teams prefer to draft a small forward, the talent of Favors and Cousins is fairly remarkable. To have a talent like that drop a spot or two in the draft would be pretty substantial.