25 thoughts, observations, and wisecracks about the 2012 NBA Draft, now that there’s been some time to see the whole board.
1. I spent two months talking myself into the idea that Tyshawn Taylor was a first round pick because I was worried I was being overly harsh on his decision making late in games. Then it turned out I was giving him too much credit.
2. Harrison Barnes was essentially overrated in evaluations for two years, all the way up until Thursday at 7:00 EST. Then he was adequately rated by the draft process. Waiters may have been a reach by Cleveland, but Barnes going seventh was representative of where he should go overall. Enough of a risk to not go top five, enough of a talent to go top ten.
3. The bust likelihood on Anthony Davis is the basement. It’s sub-arctic. That’s such a luxury for the Hornets. Even if his offensive game never flourishes, defensively, he’s a franchise player. His ceiling is mega-star, his basement is franchise power forward. So that works out well for them.
4. I was vehemently opposed to the idea of Harrison Barnes going top four. But he would have been a better choice for Cleveland than Waiters. It’s not that Waiters doesn’t fill the need or won’t be a good player. He does and he will. It’s just such a reach. The Cavaliers spent all that time efforting to move up to No. 2, why not spend a little time moving back to get Waiters and pick up something else? It wasn’t a huge reach, it was a small reach, but it was still a reach.
5. But Sacramento reaps the benefits. All of your rebounds? They belong to the Kings. All of them. In two years, that’s the single nastiest frontcourt in the NBA. Just nasty. Cousins and Robinson are going to flat out beat up on other frontcourts.
6. How about Portland showing common sense? Addressing need while taking arguably the two best players at their positions? Some common sense in a rare showing.
7. I love John Henson as a draft prospect, I hate him as a Milwaukee Buck. Ekpe Udoh, Larry Sanders, Samuel Dalembert… why do you need to add John Henson to that mix? What does he do for you in Skiles’ system?
8. Detroit couldn’t get away from Drummond’s hypnotic effect. No matter what they did, they just landed back there. Unfortunate, really. (File this under: things to throw back in my face if Drummond reaches his potential and shows that every single piece of evidence about his mental approach is flawed.)
9. The only thing, the only thing that gives me pause on Royce White is the fact that he said he might rather play music than play basketball. It’s a totally fair position. A lot of people would rather do other things than what they do. It’s just that so few NBA players are truly great with that mindset.
10. I had all these wonderful words prepared for whoever took Terrence Ross in spots 13-18, and then the Raptors went and reached for the sky on him and now I don’t like the pick at all. That’s just aggravating. He was best available at the position, but it’s such a “competent role player with a top-10 pick” feel.
11. “Philly drafts Moe Harkless so surely they’re going to trade Andre Iguodala!” #thingswehavethoughtforthepastfiveyears
12. Houston managed to get three great players in the draft and still come out a loser because they yet again whiffed on the big pitch. Graded. On. A curve.
13. I want you to imagine a frontcourt of Glen Davis and Andrew Nicholson. Rolly, polly, big, and aggressive as everything holy.
14. You know, if you combine both of Boston’s picks into one player, you really start to have something.
15. Oh, what’s that, you can’t do that due to NBA regulations and basic laws of science? Oh, then that’s a terrible 1-2 set. Great for value where they were at, though, even if Melo was a bit of a reach.
16. OK, Dallas. Whatever.
17. Very excited to attend the Grand Opening of the Denver Nuggets new department store: “Versatile Wings Outlet Store,” since they can open it now by owning approximately 1,100 of them.
18. Perry Jones III went from being that pick that you were anxiously dreading a team taking too high to that kid you felt sorry for dropping so low. The draft, she is a cruel mistress.
19. Kendall Marshall to the Suns makes so much sense and you nod along and nod along and then you look at the draft board and go “Wait, Marshall went No. 13? That high? Really?”
20. The Ben Gordon trade helps my “MKG is going to have too many expectations to do things he can’t even though he’s a phenomenal player and a great kid” blood pressure stay down. That’s one of the weirdest sentences ever written.
21. Washington: Daring the fates and skating by since… 2012. But still!
22. An Austin Rivers-Eric Gordon backcourt should just be called The Hunger Games.
23. Teague may have been the slightly better, maybe safer pick for Memphis, but based off their need for a combo guard, he fits well. They still will not be able to shoot. At all.
24. Philadelphia really sneakily managed their way into a tremendous draft.
25. Robbie Hummel getting drafted is just a good thing for this world. Congrats to that kid.