This time of year is a internet surfer’s dream. Every few minutes there is a new rumor, article, or Woj-bomb that lifts or dashes the spirits of fans in cities all across the country. So here is a brief roundup of what is going on … which will likely change in the next 5 minutes. That is part of the fun.
#1: Philly – Has already indicated they will take Simmons with the 1st pick and then have multiple selections more to go.
#2: Lakers – Will take Ingram and possible shopping D’Angelo Russell after the tweet issue has teammates isolating him.
#3: Celtics – Probably Dunn after exploring trades with Philly. Smart or Bradley may be up for trade if they take Dunn. 7 picks left.
#4: Suns – 1st of two Lottery picks. Have also looked at trades for one or both of their picks.
#5: T-Wolves – Finally some hope with the law firm of KAT, Wiggings and Thibs. Hield or Murray fits nicely here.
#6: Pelicans – Any help for the Unibrow is needed. One of the weakest rosters in the NBA.
#7: Nuggets – A chance to add a 3rd foreign, big man in Bender to go with Jurkic and Nokic. Too many?
#8: Kings – Reportedly have had very few players in and agents seem to be avoiding the troubled franchise.
#9: Raptors – Not in love with anyone here and rumored to be shopping their pick. If they feel Biyombo will leave, Davis might be a good pick here.
#10 Bucks – Probably a big man here as Monroe is likely on his way out.
#11 Magic – Likely a wing or big here as well as they have a lot of smallish guards and lost Harris at the trade deadline.
#12 Hawks; In the ‘who knows what they are doing’ department, they traded Teague and Horford may be leaving.
#13 Suns – 2nd Lottery pick. Remember when they used to sell one quite often? Paul Allen on line-1.
#14: Bulls – The Rose era is over so if Wade Baldwin is still available, count him in. Bulls may not be done dealing.
There are more picks that seem available this year than in any Draft of recent memory. Part of that is because 8 teams hold over half of the selections in this Draft. I believe Portland is looking at two slots. They have their eye on a player in the mid-20’s and if they can not move into that range, have another target in the first 1/3 of the 2nd round. It’s doubtful they will be able to do both as they don’t have a lot of movable or desirable assets but in a year where so many picks seem to be available, the price might be lower than normal.
One of the early reported players of interest was Thon Maker. He is listed from the mid-20’s to the late-30’s depending on which Mock Draft you are looking at. A tremendous amount of potential to do things few players can do but no where near ready to contribute anytime soon, Maker is the type of home-run swing you can take with a later pick and a team like Boston that has multiple picks can afford to take a shot with one of those many selections.
The Blazers may also be looking for a replacement for any one of the four free-agents they have that might not be back. It is generally assumed Henderson will be gone but Crabbe might get a big offer and Harkless as well as Leonard are up for significant raises as well.
My bet is Portland somehow works their way in for a pick and we all get to speculate on how much of an impact that player make(r)s.
Update: Maker may be older than 19. If that is the case, he will likely fall out of the 1st round and someone may take a chance on him in the 2nd. Considered raw at age 19, if he is still that raw at 21+, he is more like a taller version of Luis Montero.
Update: (2:45) According to Adrian Wojnarowski, Boston is still open to move the #3 pick. Portland is again being reported to be trying to move in to the last 1st round. Minnesota looking for a shooter to space the floor for KAT and Wiggins.
Update: (3:50) The Charlotte Hornets will be using the #22 pick to select for the Sacramento Kings in trade for Marco Belinelli.