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Tom Lorenzo:Uh-oh... Is Joel Embiid no longer the top pick? Dude feels more and more like a gamble.
Jeff Rose:Wiggins is the better player, anyway
Jeff Rose:Embiid has too many question marks now
Kevin O'Connor:Hey, what's up everyone!
Jeff Rose:hey guys, really excited about the Draft
Reed Wallach:What's up guys and gals, Kevin and I are at your service to answer any draft questions you may have.
Kevin O'Connor:Uh-oh... Is Joel Embiid no longer the top pick? Dude feels more and more like a gamble.
Reed Wallach:Kevin, who do you think is the biggest sleeper in this draft?
Kevin O'Connor:Woj's latest report is troubling, that's for sure, but it’s not worth overreacting until we really know more. Right now, he’s still the #1 player on my board, as he has been since late January, but he’s on thin ice. You look at the guys right behind
Kevin O'Connor:him -- Parker, Wiggins, Exum – and it’s getting to the point that they might be safer picks based on the fact that none of them have an injury history. Embiid had back trouble in high school, again in college, and now this foot thing...it's a concern
Reed Wallach:If I were the Cavs I would take Wiggins at 1, if Embiid's injuries are that severe. Wiggins has the talent that makes passing on Embiid easier.
Kevin O'Connor:My biggest sleeper for first rounders is K.J. McDaniels. He's an absolutely stellar defender, but I really like the complimentary skills he brings on the offensive end. Great in transition, can slash. I have a hard time seeing him failing in the NBA.
jeff g:what's up with this speculated bigger deal the nets might be apart of?
Drake H:I hear Boston is really in love with Smart...if they pick him do you see Rondo being traded this season? I for one think they can coexist pretty well.
Reed Wallach:With you on McDaniels. I love his defense and think he can fit very well in a complementary role in the league. Draft Express has him going 29 to the Thunder right now. I don't see him falling that far, but if he did, that would be scary.
Ronald Campbell:What are your thoughts on second round centers Isaiah Austin and Patric Young?
Reed Wallach:what's up with this speculated bigger deal the nets might be apart of?
Reed Wallach:Well, yesterday it was reported that the Nets are trying to get into the first round. It will be tough with limited assets, but I think that a combination of either Marcus Thornton's expiring deal, Bojan Bogdanovic's rights, and $2 million can get..
Reed Wallach:the Nets a late first rounder or second rounder.
Kevin O'Connor:Well, they do have the $2 mil they can give to "buy" a pick. I doubt they're able to afford a first rounder though. At #27, I believe Phoenix can get a lot more in return. But there are plenty of options in the second round, that's for sure- MIN, PHI
Reed Wallach:I hear Boston is really in love with Smart...if they pick him do you see Rondo being traded this season? I for one think they can coexist pretty well.
Kevin O'Connor:That seems to be the big question if the Celtics fail to get Kevin Love: What to do with Rondo? I think he'll end up getting traded at some point if they aren't able to go into "win now" mode. Maybe at the trade deadline. I'm not sure that Rondo and
Jeff Rose:Who do you like for the Nets, if they get into the late 1st round
Kevin O'Connor:Smart can coexist. Neither are quality spot up jump shooters, which is crucial in Brad Stevens' motion offense. I think Rondo + Exum could work though, if they're drafting a guard in the top 10.
Reed Wallach:A Rondo/Smart backcourt would be as tough a defense as you can get. But there would be some awful shooting in Boston. I just don't see it working out unless Ainge plans to move one of them.
Reed Wallach:What are your thoughts on second round centers Isaiah Austin and Patric Young?
Reed Wallach:I mentioned Austin as a potential sleeper with his versatility and size, but he doesn't seem to be getting much traction from teams. If he falls in the right situation, he could be a solid rotational player.
Kevin O'Connor:I have Young ranked #38 and Austin at #42 on my big board, so quite a lot. Young brings that grit on defense. He's a fantastic defender, truly does it all. In my draft guide, I say he has "the body of a Greek God." It's true. He's limited on offense
Reed Wallach:I'm big on Patric Young because there is no harm in using a roster spot on a guy who will do anything to win. Young is a high motor guy who will be a beast on the boards. He does lack an offensive set, so there are some flaws.
Kevin O'Connor:As for Isaiah Austin, I worry about his eye being a problem more than most people. Playing zone in college in one thing, but "seeing the floor" in a wide open NBA game could be problematic. I think his shooting inconsistencies could be pinned on that
Kevin O'Connor:as well. Regardless, he's still an insanely talented player. He's so long with a huge wingspan. Can score on the post and shoot it. He has potential and is a potential steal, for sure.
Reed Wallach:Who do you like for the Nets, if they get into the late 1st round
Kevin O'Connor:I doubt they get into the late first, but I think Damien Inglis or Thanasis Antetokounmpo would be great fits for them at the wing position in the early 2nd. Both are fantastic defensive players. Bring energy every possession.
Reed Wallach:Kyle Anderson has become the best friend I never had.I love his versatility and that he could end up being the next Shaun Livingston. His stock is constantly changing so it's tough to gauge where he's actually going, but if he's there, BK should take
Ronald Campbell:The Celtics have been working out a bunch of second rounders. Do you think they are looking to acquire a 2nd or for guys who will go undrafted? Who could you see them drafting in the second?
Kevin O'Connor:There are far too many guards to list. I know Nets fans want Shabazz Napier, but I don't see it happening. Instead, a guy like Deonte Burton, Kendrick Perry, or Russ Smith seems like a more realistic option.
Drake H:If Boston does land Kevin Love does it stop there or do you see them trying to recreate another Big 3?
Reed Wallach:I also think that the Nets can use a true small forward to take over if Paul Pierce doesn't return. Glenn Robinson and Cleanthony Early are some names I like hovering at the end of the first round. A point guard later in the draft could work too.
Reed Wallach:The Celtics have been working out a bunch of second rounders. Do you think they are looking to acquire a 2nd or for guys who will go undrafted? Who could you see them drafting in the second?
Kevin O'Connor:I do. I have an article prepared for this exact topic next week. I think a player like Nick Johnson or Kendrick Perry, who they both worked out, will end up in Boston. Danny Ainge loves "sparkplug" guards and they present fantastic value.
Reed Wallach:They are reportedly looking to get a pick late in the draft. They could use a three-point shooter or a big man. Markel Brown from Oklahoma State is a second round guy I really like.
jeff g:Is it nice having half of the nets picks over the next decade? :)
Kevin O'Connor:For reference, here's a previous article I wrote of some sparkplugs the Celtics worked out, but it can apply to any team: http://sbn.to/1hXi3mB
Ronald Campbell:What are your thoughts on Dairis Bertans being invited to the Celtics Summer League team?
Reed Wallach:I just wrote about how Nick Johnson can be a great fit with the Nets as an athlete off the bench, so Kevin and I are in the same boat on him.
Kevin O'Connor:Johnson is a monster defensively...love his energy. He's a gamer.
Reed Wallach:If Boston does land Kevin Love does it stop there or do you see them trying to recreate another Big 3?
Reed Wallach:I think if they plan on keeping Kevin Love, they have to try and get another guy. I don't know enough about their cap situation to comment on what they should do.
Kevin O'Connor:I doubt it stops there. Danny Ainge doesn't settle for less than the best. I've played with the idea of Melo and I think that might be "Plan A" along with Kevin Love. It's a little unrealistic, but this is the NBA and they're in a better position to
Kevin O'Connor:make moves around the cap than most teams are. It could work but yeah, I think if they get Love, look for at least an *attempt* at another huge move.
Dave Benson:Is anyone going to take a chance on Sim Bhullar? The dude is 7'5" with an 8-ft wingspan
Reed Wallach:Is it nice having half of the nets picks over the next decade? :)
Reed Wallach:No comment...
Kevin O'Connor:You know, when the trade happened I said "this is a gift from the basketball gods." And almost one year later I feel the same way x100. But look, the Nets are a huge sell and will find talent, whether or not they have draft picks.
Reed Wallach:What are your thoughts on Dairis Bertans being invited to the Celtics Summer League team?
Kevin O'Connor:Since he's Latvian, I first joked it was a move to set up a transition for Kristaps Porzingis to be the pick at #17. Of course, Porzingis dropped out, but maybe that was part of the thought process. Regardless, I think he's a solid camp body.
Kevin O'Connor:I liked the limited amount of footage available of him. Seems like a high energy player who does "the little things" on both ends of the floor. Exactly the type of guy you want in a roster competition.
Reed Wallach:Is anyone going to take a chance on Sim Bhullar? The dude is 7'5" with an 8-ft wingspan
Reed Wallach:I wouldn't because he moves like a snail, but if a team is looking for size in the D-League at the end of the draft, why not?
Kevin O'Connor:Someone will. He's too friggin' big not to take a chance. He has a 98-inch wingspan and stands at 7-foot-5. I just don't see him making it in the NBA though. He's too slow. His feet move like they're covered in sludge. As Reed said, he's a great guy
Kevin O'Connor:to have on your D-League roster. I don't see him making it in the NBA unless his conditioning improves drastically.
Stuart Nadler:Sim is no slower than any other player his size (Yao, George, etc.) and he'd be the biggest guy in the league.
Jeff Rose:somewhat draft related, but what do you think of the proposed David Lee, Klay Thompson and 1st rounder for Kevin Love and Kevin Martin deal?
Reed Wallach:somewhat draft related, but what do you think of the proposed David Lee, Klay Thompson and 1st rounder for Kevin Love and Kevin Martin deal?
John DeZerga:Bold prediction on draft night?
Kevin O'Connor:I don't like it for Minnesota. Lee and Thompson are nice players but I'm not in love with them like I am with Kevin Love (no pun intended, seriously). They can do better than that.
Reed Wallach:I think if you're dealing a superstar like Love, you blow it up and try to get picks and cap space. Lee is a big contract right now and Thompson is going to have to get paid big money. Not an ideal situation for a team just dealing their superstar.
Reed Wallach:But it's Minnesota so they may do it anyway.
Reed Wallach:Bold prediction on draft night?
Kevin O'Connor:Julius Randle drops like a rock to the 10th, 11th, or 12th spot. Maybe that's not quite a drop anymore since it's "in vogue" to say that, but I had him dropping to #10 about a month ago and was called psychotic -- maybe I am -- but I stand by it.
Reed Wallach:Julius Randle fals to 10.
Reed Wallach:Reading my mind Kevin...
Kevin O'Connor:Just look at those teams picking. If he gets past #7, who takes him? Sac at #8? Eh. Charlotte, definitely not. That puts him at the 10th spot.
Reed Wallach:I also think that Gary Harris goes before Dario Saric.
Ronald Campbell:Who would you take at 17?
Reed Wallach:Who would you take at 17?
Reed Wallach:If he's there, Zach LaVine.
Kevin O'Connor:Well, since the Celtics "have #17" that means Love was traded elsewhere, which means it's time to look for the "long rebuild." Assuming Gordon was the pick at #6, I'd go for a PG. Maybe Elfrid Payton if he slips. I think Tyler Ennis is a great fit.
Ronald Campbell:Do you think the C's can keep #17 and get Love?
Kevin O'Connor:But there are a lot of players I like there. KJ McDaniels, TJ Warren, Jusuf Nurkic...it all depends on what happens at #6.
Reed Wallach:I do think that Anderson can be in play there as well. It depends on who the Celtics get at pick #6.
Reed Wallach:Yo, KO, you got to stop taking the words out of my mouth.
Drake H:If the Celtics don't get Love and enter full on rebuild mode what style of ball are they going for? What will their team identity be?
Kevin O'Connor:I definitely didn't take the words "Zach LaVine" out of your mouth! I'm not a fan...Haha.
Drake H:Kevin, why are you a fan of Zach?
Reed Wallach:I think him and Rondo will have all of the highlights. All of them.
Reed Wallach:Do you think the C's can keep #17 and get Love?
Alen Murtic:Should Danny move up with #17 if he strikes ou on Love, using LAC and PHI picks? Seems like a only logical move, IMO. Also, I like the idea of Stauskas if he gets Love. Incredible p&r potential, develop him like Rondo.
Kevin O'Connor:Doubt it...unless Minnesota wants a guy like Jeff Green in the deal instead. Danny Ainge might play hardball and demand to keep #17, instead giving a distant future pick.
jeff g:Is there any chance the Nets get another star this offseason
Reed Wallach:Should Danny move up with #17 if he strikes ou on Love, using LAC and PHI picks? Seems like a only logical move, IMO. Also, I like the idea of Stauskas if he gets Love. Incredible p&r potential, develop him like Rondo.
Kevin O'Connor:Yeah, I'll be stunned if Danny Ainge doesn't try to move up. I look at Denver at #11 and think that's a primetime spot to move up. #17 + future pick for #11 is ideal. Harris, Stauskas, and Saric being the primary targets there.
dylan Mendelowitz:Where do the Nets have the best chance to move into the draft and who would their primary targets be?
Reed Wallach:Is there any chance the Nets get another star this offseason
Reed Wallach:I would be very, very shocked.
Drake H:Are the 76ers a team to fear in the future with a healthy Noel, MCW, and whomever they draft this year?
Reed Wallach:Where do the Nets have the best chance to move into the draft and who would their primary targets be?
Reed Wallach:Phoenix at 27 is likely open to being traded for. The Bulls are looking to deal 16 and 19, and the Thunder could be open to trading at 29 (all speculation, of course).
Kevin O'Connor:Where could they move in? The second round. There, I think Minnesota, Phoenix, Denver, and Philly could be "selling" picks.
Reed Wallach:If Brooklyn does get into the draft, look at Kyle Anderson, Shabazz Napier, Spencer Dinwiddie, Cleanthony Early, Glenn Robinson as potential picks, IMO.
Kevin O'Connor:Who could they target? I'd love to see them go for a high-risk/high reward "upside" player. Damien Inglis comes to mind. Defensive-oriented player who brings complimentary scoring. Could replace AK47's role. A guy like Russ Smith at point guard.
Kevin O'Connor:Or as Reed mentioned, Spencer Dinwiddie is a guy I am very, very high on. I'm not sure how far he'll drop though coming off the torn ACL. Very talented combo guard.
Reed Wallach:Are the 76ers a team to fear in the future with a healthy Noel, MCW, and whomever they draft this year?
Reed Wallach:I'm not as high on MCW as most, and we need to see Noel play first, but they're going to contend for a playoff spot next year in the sad East. The Atlantic Division is going to be a bloodbath.
Kevin O'Connor:They'll be fun to watch. Imagine if they come out of this with Wiggins and Stauskas...I think they'll be very close to competing even though I'm not a fan of MCW and his low efficiency. Very unreliable. He's the weak link.
Reed Wallach:Does that mean you think Aaron Gordon is gone by 10, KO?
Kevin O'Connor:If the Celtics keep their picks, I think he'll be gone by #6.
Jeff Rose:What about PJ Harriston?
Stuart Nadler:Why don't the Harlem Globetrotters ever get a decent pick?
Reed Wallach:What about PJ Harriston?
Drake H:Saw this on Reddit about Gordon "I get that he's an ultra-athletic option that would provide some above the rim presence, and a great defensive presence as well, but we already basically have that exact same thing in Jeff Green"
Reed Wallach:I think if he is on the board when Memphis picks at 22, I believe he can go as high as 15, he goes there.
Kevin O'Connor:I had Hairston as high a #12 on my board back in March, but he settled into the #18 spot now. He's an efficient half court player because of his shooting. He's got a role in the NBA for sure. It'd just be nice to see him more in other areas of the
Kevin O'Connor:game like passing and defense...he has the tools but it's mental, really. Some of those guys never change. I feel the same way about James Young. But Hairston's 3PT shooting is truly deadly.
Jeff Rose:Biggest bust potential of Top 10 guys?
Reed Wallach:James Young is an intriguing prospect, now that you brought him up. His stock is as volatile as anyone in mocks. He can go as high as 11 or as low as 21. It's weird. Thoughts, KO?
nate wilber:Talk about basketball IQ and instincts when scouting players. How big of a role does this play and how valuable is it? Can it significantly add stock to a player that has holes in his game?
Kevin O'Connor:It is weird, but I think that speaks to how some teams value him so differently. Is he the type of guy that will ever be more than a spot up shooting option with slashing abilities? Or will he actually take advantage of his measurables and learn to
Kevin O'Connor:be something more? I tend to lean towards "no" and think he'll be a solid role player, with "starter role player" upside.
Reed Wallach:I agree. He's so young that I see a team taking a chance on his upside, like maybe the Bulls at 16/19, if they keep their pick.
Reed Wallach:Biggest bust potential of Top 10 guys?
Reed Wallach:I would say Exum because he hasn't played with truly elite competition and I don't know all that much about him. I think everyone is relatively safe, though.
Kevin O'Connor:Vonleh if he's dropped top 5. I think he's "safe" because his rebounding and shooting is good enough for him to find his niche, but if he goes to Orlando or Utah, expectations will be ridiculously high and he may not reach them. And another possible
Kevin O'Connor:bust is Julius Randle. He brings energy and can rebound, but again, those are the only skills I have confidence in. His offense won't translate as easily as people think because he won't be able to overpower in the NBA like he did in college and...
Kevin O'Connor:on defense, well, the guy is a mess. He has a long way to go. He could definitely improve because of his lateral quickness but it will take a long time for him to get to the level he needs to be.
Reed Wallach:Sorry everyone, but that is all the time we have today! Thanks for following along and asking great questions. You can follow me on Twitter @ReedWallach and Kevin, @KevinOConnorNBA. Thanks!
Kevin O'Connor:Thanks guys. I released an NBA Draft Guide I think they you will all enjoy. It has over 60 full page scouting reports, my full top 100 big board, details on “unknown” players, and loads of in-depth studies on players. Just ask Reed, he's loving it.
Kevin O'Connor:Here's a link with more details and a video explaining all that's included: http://sbn.to/1hXi3mB
Reed Wallach:^ Seriously, cop that now.