30 – Golden State Warriors – Robert Sacre
The Golden State Warriors find themselves down two key big men in this re-draft. Both Draymond Green and Festus Ezeli are gone. Sacre isn’t the same quality of player as Ezeli and he should not even be mentioned in the same sentence as Draymond Green, but he is a big guy who can block shots. The splash bros and company do not need Sacre to be much of an offensive threat, but if he can block shots at a good rate, than this pick is more than justified going to Sacre, who blocks a career 1.5 times per 36 minutes.
29 – Chicago Bulls – Austin Rivers
The Chicago Bulls have needed a big young guard to spell Derrick Rose for a long time. They thought that would be Marquis Teague in this draft, but they thought horribly wrong. Rivers has been rather bust-like since his 10th overall selection, but he showed in the playoffs last season that he could play at a high level. Rivers dropped 25 points on 10/13 shooting (3/6 from three) against the Houston Rockets in game three, and 17 points and 4 steals in game one. Rivers has a good chance to thrive in Tom Thibodeau’s system that brought out the best in backup guards like C.J. Watson, John Lucas III, Nate Robinson, D.J. Augustin, and Aaron Brooks. Drafting Rivers means the Bulls don’t have to suffer from Kirk Hinrich’s inefficiency, Jimmy Butler’s exhaustion, and possibly even Derrick Rose’s fatigue incited injuries if they use Rivers correctly.
28 – Oklahoma City Thunder – Quincy Acy
The Oklahoma City Thunder were loaded on the perimeter. Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, Kevin Martin, Reggie Jackson, and Thabo Sefalosha were and still are top tier talents either offensively or defensively. Where they struggled was inside. After Serge Ibaka, Kendrick Perkins was not nearly the same player he was in Boston, and Nick Collison was good at doing his role, but nothing beyond that. Acy provides an efficient big man with some range. His 114 offensive rating and 107 defensive rating with Sacramento are excellent, and his 120 offensive rating and 104 defensive rating with Toronto are really good. His career 42.1% field goal percentage from 10-16 feet out does leave more to be desired, but it is a number that would likely go up with a team that is as high caliber of an offense as Oklahoma City, and it allows for the Thunder to keep running pick and pop with their big men when Serge Ibaka goes out of the game.
27 – Miami Heat – Andrew Nicholson
The Miami Heat were defending champions when they made this selection, so this pick is simply the rich getting richer with Nicholson being added to the team. Nicholson is a high quality reserve that is finally getting playing time after former Magic head coach Jacque Vaughn benched him. The biggest thing Miami thrived on when they had LeBron was versatility. They were at their best when players could play any position on the floor, and their depth was utilized. Nicholson is very versatile offensively, being able to play around the rim as well as in the mid-range and three point areas, and defensively, Nicholson is even better, with 4.5 times as many win shares defensively as offensively. Nicholson has thrived in the pick and pop this season, shooting 66.7% from 16 feet out to the three point line. Nicholson would greatly help the current Heat now as well because he would allow for Miami to maintain a stretch four in the game when Chris Bosh goes out.
26 – Indiana Pacers – Kendall Marshall
The Indiana Pacers in the 2013 should have made the NBA Finals. They were the best team (during the post-season) in the Eastern Conference. Miami obviously won the East as well as the NBA Finals that year, but barely. Indiana took the Heat to seven games in the Eastern Conference Finals, and their starting five even outscored the Heat’s over the entire series, but the Pacers bench lost Indiana the series. This is weird because that Pacers bench had some great players on it, D.J. Augustin went on to lead the Bulls in scoring during the 2013-2014 season despite starting his Bulls season in December, Gerald Green went on to score 15.8 points per game for Phoenix that 2013-2014 season himself, Tyler Hansbrough has always provided a great energy for teams, and Ian Mahinmi is currently the starting center for the Pacers. Perhaps what this group of reserves needed was a distributor; a role Marshall plays to perfection. Marshall was able to average 8.8 assists per game (11.0 per 36 minutes) for the Lakers in 2013-2014. His assist percentage that year was 2nd in the NBA. Marshall could have been the deciding factor in Indiana making it to the NBA Finals that year.
25 – Memphis Grizzlies – Maurice Harkless
The Memphis Grizzlies made a major decision for their team in the 2012-2013 season. They decided to part ways with star forward Rudy Gay. The trade worked out for the team, as they went on to make the conference finals that season, but replacement starting forward Tayshaun Prince was certainly not the reason. While Prince’s veteran leadership should not be overlooked. A team with a defensively stingy identity needed athletes playing starting minutes, and not the aging Prince. Harkless has great size at the small forward position (6’9″ 215 lbs,) and 45.5% career field goal percentage is efficient despite playing on not-so-efficient Orlando Magic teams. Harkless could have been the team’s answer at small forward instead of putting up with Prince’s lack of production, and having to trade for Jeff Green.
24 – Cleveland Cavaliers – Miles Plumlee
The Cleveland Cavaliers needed a big man. Tyler Zeller is already taken in the re-draft, and Anderson Varejao is injured too often. The pre-LeBron James return teams would be good with a big man like Plumlee who, unlike Tristan Thompson or Varejao, is an excellent shot blocker. Those Cavaliers needed a shot blocker, and so do the LeBron James-led Cavaliers. If the Cavaliers have Plumlee, then they don’t have to give up two first round picks to acquire Timofey Mozgov. Plumlee may have been a bench warmer for most of his career, but on the 2013-2014 Phoenix Suns, he was their starting center in a year that saw the Suns over-achieve and win 48 games. Plumlee averaged 8.1 points and 7.8 rebounds in 24.6 minutes per game.
23 – Atlanta Hawks – Kyle O’Quinn
The Atlanta Hawks have played Al Horford at center for his entire career. He came out of college as a power forward, and because of their personnel, the Hawks have decided to play Horford in the center position. O’Quinn’s drafting helps the Hawks recover from when their big men leave in the 2013 offseason. Josh Smith went to Detroit, Zaza Pachulia went to Milwaukee, Mike Scott was never there because he was already selected in the re-draft, and Ivan Johnson was let go of. O’Quinn is a high quality reserve big man, and his 2.1 career blocks per 36 minutes would be huge for a team that hasn’t had a shot blocker after Smith left. O’Quinn has also been a decent offensive player. He shoots 68.9% around the rim (0-3 feet out,) and 50.0% in the mid range (10-16 feet out.) O’Quinn would simply be a good back-up to Paul Millsap and Horford.
22 – Boston Celtics – Mike Scott
The Celtics lost Jared Sullinger and Fab Melo in the re-draft, so it is appropriate that they get a big man Scott and Sullinger have very similar playing styles, and Scott is the better team defender of the two, as Sullinger is rather immobile at 6’9″ and 260 pounds, whereas Scott is 6’8″ and 237 pounds. The Celtics’ guards aren’t the best of shooters, as Marcus Smart, Evan Turner, and previously Rajon Rondo all had limited range. That is why it is and has been the past few years imperative that their big men can stretch the floor. Kelly Olynyk, Sullinger, Jonas Jerebko, and even Brandon Bass to an extent, thrived with their shooting ability. Scott’s three point shot has improved every year in the league to the point where he now shoots an excellent 38.9% from three and 41.7% from corner threes. Scott has played excellently off the bench, and on a Celtics team that brings out the best in role players, much of the same and more can be expected.
21 – Boston Celtics – Will Barton
The Boston Celtics have had trouble scoring the ball at times. After Isiah Thomas’ excellent, but somewhat inefficient 21.8 points per game on 42.2% shooting, Is Jae Crowder’s 14.4 points per game, but Crowder was taken already in the re-draft, and so was their fourth leading scorer Jared Sullinger, and rotational big man Tyler Zeller is gone too. The Celtics need scoring regardless of those players’ presence or lack thereof, and Barton is becoming quite the scorer. During the 2015-2016 season, Barton is averaging 15.8 points per game to go with 6.3 rebounds on 44.8% shooting and 38.5% from three. The Nuggets are 8.8 points per 100 possessions better with Barton on the court. Barton’s impact goes beyond his already impressive box score statistics, and on the Celtics, Barton’s scoring would be even more valuable. If he can keep up his play this season for the rest of his career, he will go down as one of the better players from this draft.
20 – Denver Nuggets – Jeremy Lamb
The Denver Nuggets thrived on contributions from everyone in 2012-2013, they have not been even close to the same team since then, but the 2012-2013 Nuggets that won 57 games were something to be seen. The Nuggets lost Evan Fournier in the re-draft, so they need a back-up wing player. Lamb has really come into his own in Charlotte, where he finally got minutes this season. Lamb is averaging 11.2 points, 4.6 rebounds, and 1.4 assists in just 22.1 minutes per game on an excellent 47.0% from the field. Lamb has a PER of 17.8, and is getting .124 win shares per 48 minutes. The Nuggets would be getting an excellent back up for Andre Iguodala in 2012-2013, and a good starting two guard for years to come instead of having to suffer through Randy Foye’s mediocrity and use a high pick to acquire a competent starting guard.
19 – Orlando Magic – Thomas Robinson
The Orlando Magic had the worst record in the entire league during the 2012-2013 season, but the young talent on this team was undeniable. Tobias Harris was stolen in every sense of the word in a trade that had the Magic only have to give up J.J. Redick (for a few months before he signed with Los Angeles,) Gustavo Ayon, and Ish Smith for Harris, as well as Doron Lamb, and Beno Udrih. Harris and Nikola Vucevic were two great young players for them, and later on Victor Oladipo, Elfrid Payton, and Aaron Gordon would be drafted by the Magic. Power forward is definitely a hole for them though, as Glen Davis was injured and let go of, and O’Quinn and Nicholson were lost in the re-draft. Robinson has never had the chance to play big minutes for a team. The most he has played was 18.5 minutes per game for the 76ers in 2014-2015, where he averaged 17.1 points, 15.0 rebounds, 2.1 assists, and 1.4 steals per 36 minutes. Those numbers are fantastic, and could be an indication of what happens when Robinson gets more playing time, but he has not gotten it. Robinson has had the misfortune of teams that either don’t play him (Houston and Philadelphia,) were horrible organizations (Sacramento and Brooklyn,) or simply prioritized winning over player development (Portland.) It would be interesting to see Robinson on a good organization that plays him, even if they don’t win many games initially.
18 – Houston Rockets – Meyers Leonard
The Houston Rockets love three point shooting. They are always among the league’s leaders in that statistic, and in Meyers Leonard’s rookie season, they attempted and made the second most in the league. Leonard is a stretch four or stretch five, and since the Rockets already lost Terrence Jones in the re-draft and Thomas Robinson, who was acquired in a mid-season trade, they would love to acquire another one. Leonard made a big difference in Portland by being able to stretch the defense out and give LaMarcus Aldridge space inside, as well as their great guards and wings like C.J. McCollum, Wesley Matthews, Damian Lillard, and Nicolas Batum space to drive. This was true so much so, that Leonard had an offensive rating of 117, and a defensive rating of 102 in 2014-2015. This net rating was the best on the Trailblazers despite the presence of all-stars Lillard and Aldridge. His win shares per 48 minutes was third only to Lillard and Aldridge. The Rockets would love to have a player like Leonard. The Portland team’s structure strongly resembles the Rockets in with a star guard and big man duo (Lillard and Aldridge compared to James Harden and Dwight Howard,) and a small forward who can do many different things on the court (Batum compared to Ariza.) Leonard was able to thrive in Portland, and he should do just the same if not more in Houston.
17 – Dallas Mavericks – Festus Ezeli
The Dallas Mavericks have been needing an elite center for Dirk Nowitzki’s entire career really. Shawn Bradley was decent, Erick Dampier was effective even though he was overpaid, Tyson Chandler was really good, and the multitude of role players they have started at center since Chandler left in 2011 until he cam back for the 2014-2015 season were not that great. Zaza Pachulia has been good, but his long-term future with the Mavericks is non-existant. With Ezeli, Dallas has a future at the center position, and they have a present as well. Ezeli has overcome missing the 2013-2014 season to have a good career and even win the championship. Ezeli’s offensive ratings of 111 and 116 the past two seasons, and defensive ratings of 99 each season are elite, even if it is skewed because he plays for the best team in the NBA. Ezeli’s great rim protecting abilities would serve a Dallas team that has finished on the lower end of the defensive efficiency spectrum in recent years.
16 – Houston Rockets – Terrence Ross
The Houston Rockets were able to acquire Meyers Leonard with the 18th pick. With the 16th pick they get a good back-up for James Harden in Terrence Ross. Ross has been a slight disappointment since being selected 8th overall by Detroit, but his potential is very much there. Ross entered college as the 33rd best highschool prospect in his class, and in the NBA, he had a 51 point game against a very good Clippers team at the age of just 22. Despite backing up very good wing players like DeMar Derozan and Demarre Carroll, Ross still has a plus/minus of +4.0 points per 100 possessions. The Rockets desperately needed a back-up for Harden, and, to some extent, they still do. It would be very worthwhile to get one with as much potential as Ross.
15 – Philadelphia 76ers – Evan Fournier
The Philadelphia 76ers experienced a down year when they traded away Andre Iguodala for Andrew Bynum, who never played a game for the team. The 2012-2013 76ers though, were still an alright team. Point guard Jrue Holdiay was an all-star that averaged 17.7 points, 8.0 assists, and 4.2 rebounds per game. Thad Young and Spencer Hawes were solid big men that anchored the league’s 15th most efficient defense despite the fact that their wings weren’t particulately good defenders. While they weren’t the best defenders though, Nick Young, Evan Turner, and Jason Richardson were all solid scorers, and Turner was well rounded wither 13.3 points, 6.3 rebounds, and 4.3 assists per game. Still, the 76ers could have used a player with a future with the team, as all three of those wing players, as well as every player from the 2012-2013 team I mentioned, were all gotten rid of by the end of the 2013-2014 season. Evan Fournier has been one of the best wings in the NBA thus season, his averages of 13.8 points, 2.9 rebounds, 2.7 assists, and 1.3 steals per game on 43.8% shooting are very good, and they are a big part of why the Maic are much improved this season. With Fournier, the 76ers can keep their core of Holiday, Fournier, Turner, and Young together, and build a solid team around Doug Collins’ sound coaching.
14 – Milwaukee Bucks – Jared Sullinger
The Milwaukee Bucks were able to make the playoffs in 2012-2013 despite their sub-.500 record of. 38-44. They were a dynamic young team that got torn apart in free agency. Monta Ellis, J.J. Redick, Mike Dunleavy, and Samuel Dalembert all left. Brandon Jennings was traded in what turned out to be a great trade for Milwaukee that got them Brandon Knight and Khris Middleton, but in a not-so-great trade, Tobias Harris was traded for what ended up being a three month lease on J.J. Redick, who, as I already mentioned, left in free agency. The Bucks had a lot of talent go through their teams in the past few years, and if their management could be content with one set roster to build on, then they could have been a great team by now. Their players throughout the past few years though have not been the best of shooters. Sullinger’s been great with 14.6 points, 13.0 rebounds, 3.1 assists, 1.3 steals, and 1.0 blocks per 36 minutes this season, and he’s been good on defense as well with the 10th best defensive rating in the league at 97.9. The Bucks need a good interior defender in their starting line-up, especially with John Henson gone, and Sullinger’s offense makes him a great fit for the team.
13 – Phoenix Suns – Dion Waiters
The Phoenix Suns were one of the worst teams in the league in between the time they got rid of Steve Nash and the time they hired Jeff Hornacek as head coach. The Suns starting line-up during the 2012-2013 season was Goran Dragic, P.J. Tucker, Jared Dudley, Luis Scola, and Marcin Gortat. That line-up had little to no power offensively, and after Gortat and Tucker, very little defensive talent either. Then, in between the 2012-2013 season and 2013-2014 season, the Suns re-shaped their team, and they won 48 games. If the Suns can create a team with Dragic, Eric Bledsoe, Gerald Green, Waiters, Channing Frye, Marcus and Markieff Morris, and Alex Len, then they have a very deep and good team. If Waiters can play like he did in 2013-2014 with the Cavaliers with 15.9 points per game on 43.3% shooting, then this team will have a very powerful back-court.
12 – Oklahoma City Thunder – Tyler Zeller
The Oklahoma City Thunder needed big men. That is why they selected Acy later in the first round, but with Zeller, comes a true anchor. His 2014-2015 offensive and defensive ratings of 119 and 105 are fantastic, as too were his win shares per 48 minutes of .179, and his 5th in the NBA 54.9% from the field. The Thunder’s lack of big men could be a reason as to why they lost to an inferior Memphis Grizzies team in the 2nd round of the playoffs in 2012-2013, and that likely doesn’t happen with a confident Zeller. The Thunder don’t need him to do much besides be big, and at 7’0″ tall and 253 pounds, Zeller has not had a problem with that before.
11 – Portland Trailblazers – John Henson
The fit here is excellent. The Portland Trailblazers had four great starters in 2012-2013. Damian Lillard, Wesley Matthews, Nicolas Batum, and LaMarcus Aldridge. The fifth? J.J. Hickson: the culprit as to who was responsible for Portland’s defense being ranked 26th despite having a lot of talent. While Lillard has already been selected in the re-draft, Portland can still improve their team by snagging Henson, who is one of the best rim protectors in the NBA. He has been 9th in the NBA in total blocks the past two seasons despite coming off the bench for the Bucks, and in 2013-2014, Henson had the 6th highest block percentage in the league. While it is tempting for Portland to reach for a point guard here, the next best point guard is Kendall Marshall, who is simply not at the same level as Henson.
10 – New Orleans Hornets – Jae Crowder
The New Orleans Hornets (soon to become Pelicans) were building a team around Anthony Davis. They had a few nice pieces in the 2012-2013 season. Greivis Vasquez was averaging 13.9 points, 9.0 assists, and 4.3 rebounds per game. Eric Gordon, when healthy, averaged 17.0 points per game, Robin Lopez, Al-Farouq Aminu, and Ryan Anderson were all major contributors with Davis. But the team was, and still is, lacking a strong two-way player. Crowder can plug the hole at small forward New Orleans has had ever since Davis was drafted, and he can do it really well. His 14.6 points, 5.3 rebounds, and 1.8 steals per game are great, and his offensive and defensive ratings of 113 and 101 are even better. If the Pelicans/Hornets can stay healthy, they could have had a line-up of Jrue Holiday, Eric Gordon, Jae Crowder, Anthony Davis, and Omer Asik, with Norris Cole, Tyreke Evans, Ryan Anderson, and Alexis Ajinca on the bench. That is a great, deep team.
9 – Detroit Pistons – Terrence Jones
The Detroit Pistons suffered two big losses in the re-draft. They lost Andre Drummond and Khris Middleton, but Jones is still a very good player. His career offensive and defensive ratings of 114 and 105 are just two examples of his great two-way ability. Jones was the starting power forward for the Houston Rocket teams that won 50+ games in 2013-2014 and 2014-2015. Jones’ defense and range (36.2% on threes this season) make him a good fit with Greg Monroe and the Pistons. A starting line-up of Brandon Knight, Kyle Singler, Tayshaun Prince, Terrence Jones, and Greg Monroe, with Rodney Stuckey and Jonas Jerebko off the bench is not horrible, and is one good wing player away from really making noise in the Eastern Conference.
8 – Toronto Raptors – Michael Kidd-Gilchrist
The Toronto Raptors are a great team now, but for a long time in the post-Chris Bosh era, they were not. In the 2012-2013 season, the Raptors had a great back court of Kyle Lowry and DeMar Derozan, but Rudy Gay and Andrea Bargnani were holding this team back. When Gay was traded, the Raptors thrived, but they still lacked a great perimeter defender at small forward. Toronto has tried James Johnson, Terrence Ross, Alan Anderson, and others at the position, but none would be as effective as Kidd-Gilchrist. Kidd-Gilchrist is a great defensive player, and while his offense is a work in progress, it would not be as detrimental to a high powered offensive team like Charlotte as it would be to Toronto. The Hornets were 12.2 points per 100 possessions better with MKG on the floor last season, a testament to his great impact on the game. A starting line-up of Lowry, Derozan, Kidd-Gilchrist, Patrick Patterson, and Jonas Valanciunas would be great offensively and defensively. If that line-up can get rounded out with a bench full of shooters and defenders, then Toronto would be set for a very long time.
7 – Golden State Warriors – Khris Middleton
The Golden State Warriors might have lost Harrison Barnes and Draymond Green in the re-draft, but Middleton is a better scorer and shooter than both of them. Middleton’s 17.6 points per game this season are excellent. His impact when he is in the game is unbelieveable. The Bucks were 15.3 points per 100 possessions better with Middleton on the court last season, and they are 13.7 points per 100 possessions better with him on the court this season. Middleton’s insane 40.9% shooting from deep make him an excellent fit in the Warriors three point barrage of an offense, and his defense is pretty good too. A starting line-up of Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, Khris Middleton, Andre Iguodala, and Andrew Bogut is still good enough to make it to the NBA Finals and even win.
6 – Portland Trailblazers – Harrison Barnes
Harrison Barnes is the best talent available at the 6th pick for the Portland Trailblazers. While the positional fit isn’t very clear, the talent is. Barnes has improved each and every year of being in the league, and while he has taken a sidekick role on the Golden State Warriors, Barnes could very well be a star if he had was the first or second offensive option on a team. Barnes was the number one recruit out of high school in 2010, so the talent is definitely there. On the Trailblazers, Barnes could either replace Batum in the starting line-up to leave an immediate starting line-up of Nolan Smith, Wesley Matthews, Barnes, LaMarcus Aldridge, and John Henson, or Barnes could replace the glaring weakspot of Nolan Smith, but have Batum play the point. That starting line-up is star studded, even if they don’t have a bench.
5 – Sacramento Kings – Bradley Beal
The Sacramento Kings had a hole in their line-up when they made this pick. They ignored their hole at wing by selecting Thomas Robinson, who was traded midway into his rookie season. Beal’s 19.2 points per game this season is excellent. His three point shooting percentage of 40.1 is crucial to the Wizards’ success. The best part about Beal is that he is a winner. In the playoffs, Beal is even better than in the regular season, as his win shares per 48 minutes goes from .79 to .146, and he goes from making the Wizards 2.5 points per 100 possessions better in the regular season to 7.7. This pick of Bradley Beal is a major upgrade, because it allows for Tyreke Evans to slide into the small forward spot, and suddenly the Kings have a very balanced line-up of Isiah Thomas, Beal, Evans, Jason Thompson, and DeMarcus Cousins. That line-up, if defensively coached, can be dangerous.
4 – Cleveland Cavaliers – Draymond Green
Talk about scary. The guy (Draymond Green) who plays with arguably the most heart since Dennis Rodman teammed up with the league’s most powerful player, LeBron James. While there would be a learning curve for this duo to play together, as James, Green, and also Kyrie Irving all want to handle the ball, but when the chemistry is created, the Eastern Conference is done. Draymond Green has been unbelieveable this season in an effort that has built off last season’s pleasantly surprising campaign. Green’s 14.5 points, 9.5 rebounds, and 7.4 assists per game are numbers of which are very similar to Anthony Mason’s. Even if LeBron doesn’t comeback to Cleveland because of some reality shift this re-draft created, the Cavaliers group of Kyrie Irving, C.J. Miles, Andrew Wiggins, Green, and Tristan Thompson is still a very high potential group. With LeBron though, thhe King would already have ring three.
3 – Washington Wizards – Damian Lillard
The Washington Wizards had some good pieces in 2012-2013, but they weren’t able to put them together for a playoff run until the 2013-2014 season. John Wall played excellently with 18.5 points, 7.6 assists, and 4.0 rebounds per game, and Nene played well also. Adding Damian Lillard to this team makes them a 50 win team for the next five years. Those stats don’t lie; Lillard was one of the best point guards in the league each of the past few seasons, but his score first nature often times interfered, but sliding over to shooting guard would take away the interference element. Wall and Lillard would be the league’s best back court by a land slide, and surrounding those guys with Martell Webster, Trevor Ariza, Trevor Booker, Nene, and Jordan Crawford makes this team very dangerous in the playoffs.
2 – Charlotte Bobcats – Andre Drummond
The Charlotte Hornets were coming off of their worst season in franchise history when they made this pick. The 2012-2013 season though, was an improvement. Kemba Walker and Gerald Henderson combined for 33.2 points per game out of the starting back court, but their front court was very raw. Kidd-Gilchrist, who was lost in the re-draft, Byron Mullens, and Bismack Biyombo made up the front court starters. None of them contributed much offensively, and Mullens was a defensive liability. With Drummond, this team has a front court direction, and a trio for the future with Walker, Henderson, and Drummond. Drummond is simply a man among boys, and has been since he came into the league. His current averages of 17.7 point and 15.5 rebounds per game are numbers that are reminiscent of the great Moses Malone. Drummond also has an incredible net rating; the Pistons are 12.5 points per 100 possessions better with Drummond on the floor because of Drummond’s incredible rebounding, blocking, and field goal percenage. A starting line-up of Walker, Henderson, a legitimate small forward, Josh McRoberts, and Drummond would be fun to watch, and defensively impregnable.
1 – New Orleans Hornets – Anthony Davis
This was the Hornets’ original pick, and it sure has paid off. Davis has blossomed into one of the best players in the entire NBA, and a future MVP. His PER of 30.8 last season is on par with the best players in NBA history, and he is well on his way to becoming one of those himself. The Pelicans have only been to the playoffs once with Davis, but he has done all he can to make that happen. His win shares last season of 14.0 was about 1/3 of their total wins, and Davis is carrying this team on both offense and defense. The Pelicans need to surround him with more talent if they want to contend, but the selection of Jae Crowder would have helped. Davis has been one of the best players in the NBA since the 2013-2014 season, and the Pelicans make the same selection because of it.