Welcome back to our 2003 second round re-draft. Part 1 garnered a flurry of comments, and it's nice to see people interested in this sort of thing. Without further ado, let's join the exciting conclusion to this re-draft, already in progress.
45. Chicago Bulls (original pick - Matt Bonner)
Bonner was traded, but we're making Chicago keep the pick. Everything said earlier about Chicago still applies, and the Bulls will take Travis Hansen to provide an offense-defense tandem with Korver.
46. Denver Nuggets (original pick - Sani Becirovic)
Becirovic, a combo guard, wasn't a terrible pick, and he's won several championships with different European teams, but this Nuggets squad could've used a power forward to replace Tskitishvili and for when Chris Andersen...you know. We're already starting to run out of those, though, and while Badiane could also work here, I'll go with Tommy Smith, who was a good shot-blocker and a decent rebounder in college.
47. Utah Jazz (original pick - Mo Williams)
There were a few second round steals this year, and in hindsight this was one of the biggest. In the first round Utah drafted Williams' current Cleveland teammate Sasha Pavlovic. Weird. Both guard and center were weaknesses for Utah that year, at least beyond DeShawn Stevenson and Raja Bell, who hadn't really become good yet anyway. We're going to preserve the Utah tradition of lame centers, though, and give them solid backup shooting guard in Keith Bogans
48. New Orleans Hornets (original pick - James Lang)
The fact that Lang didn't stick on a team that had Jamaal Magloire and Sean Rooks as its centers should tell you something (and yes, I know this was Magloire's good period). Here's a fun fact - it took me a long time before I realized that current Hornets backup Sean Marks wasn't Sean Rooks. Wasn't that a fun fact? There aren't really any "NBA-ready" centers left now, not even Lang, so we'll give the Hornets Sofoklis Schortsanitis. The "Greek Baby Shaq" has been shedding weight and refining his skills some, and was a key member of the Greek national team that won the 2006 FIBA World Championships silver medal. All the Hornets would have needed to do was let him develop for a few years and they would've had a decent backup. The way he's developed he's probably more of a power forward now, but I think he could be a solid undersized center.
49. Indiana Pacers (original pick - James Jones)
Indiana didn't have a first-round pick in 2003, but luckily they unearthed a starter. Unfortunately for them, he's a starter for Miami. It's not really surprising that Jones didn't play much that year, as the Pacers were full of forwards, but the team only had about five guards on the roster that season, including Fred Jones and whatever was left of Kenny Anderson. I like Sani Becirovic here, who's teams have won the Italian Super Cup in 2005 and two Greek and Euroleague Championships. Here are some highlights of Becirovic from a few years ago. I suggest you hit "mute."
50. Philadelphia 76ers (original pick - Paccelis Morlende)
I asked for less lende. Less! (Sorry) Morlende's rights were traded for Willie Green, and if you ask jsams at Liberty Ballers, he might ask for Morlende back. It appears the Sixers were looking for a guard, so why not NBA and D-League veteran Keith McLeod?
51. New Jersey Nets (original pick - Kyle Korver)
Another trade to Philly, but again, this is the Nets' pick. The Nets took Zoran Planinic in the first round, so theoretically they wouldn't be looking for another point guard, especially with Jason Kidd and, uh, Robert Pack also on the roster. What is it with teams having terrible centers in 2003? Alonzo Mourning (remember, the New Jersey Alonzo Mourning), Jason Collins and Mikki Moore. Oh, and Aaron Williams. This team won their division? Man, the East really was awful. Problem is, if we were running low on passable centers before, we're fresh out now. It's all FTGs, and not even any who have been that great for their own teams. Nedzad Sinanovic was seen as a draft sleeper at the time, though, 7'3" with decent agility. He went to Summer League with Portland (who had drafted him), but he still hasn't come over officially, and apparently his career high in points is six. The Nets love their FTGs, though.
52. Toronto Raptors (original pick - Remon van de Hare)
Another FTG for another FTG-loving team. (I can't decide whether I'm consciously trying to make "FTG" a thing. Mostly I just like the word foreign-y.) Toronto had just drafted Chris Bosh, and if I remember correctly they still hadn't figured out that he was more of a power forward, so despite van de Hare's selection I'm going to avoid centers. Drafting Quinton Ross would give Toronto a solid defensive wing, and you could argue that he could've gone higher (he was undrafted originally).
53. Chicago Bulls (original pick - Tommy Smith)
Yes, the Bulls had three second-round picks this year (what is this, the 2005 draft?), and so far we've given them a shooting guard and a swingman to go along with their first round point guard, so I guess we should throw a frontcourt player in there. Smith is gone, and Mario Austin is available but didn't stick with the Bulls when he was drafted the first time, so surprise! we'll go with Maciej Lampe. Yes, it's still okay to mock the Knicks for picking him, but he would've had at least some value this late in the draft.
54. Portland Trail Blazers (original pick - Nedzad Sinanovic)
Ah yes, the Rasheed-ZBo-Darius Miles-Qyntel Woods Blazers. Sigh. Let's try to make this a good pick and give the Portland fans something to hope for. Unfortunately the best players available are all forwards, and that's about the last thing Portland needs more of. Their backup guards that year included Jeff McInnis and Dan Dickau (and Eddie Gill), which means it's Willie Green's time to shine. Or do whatever it is other than shine that Willie Green does. I can just imagine the Portland columnists' Blazers/Green jokes now.
55. Minnesota Timberwolves (original pick - Rick Rickert)
Yes, the same Rick Rickert that got punched in the head by Kevin Garnett. As tempted as I am to pick Rickert here again and set in motion the same chain events in our imaginary 2003 (because who doesn't love a good "did you hear who Kevin Garnett punched in the head" story), I'll refrain, for there are better forwards available. I'm referring specifically to James Singleton, last seen in the comments of our "What Separates NBA Players from Non-NBA Players" discussion. After a few seasons in Europe, Singleton has become a decent backup for Dallas, averaging 14 and a half points and 11 rebounds per 40 minutes, and this could be considered a steal for Minnesota.
56. Boston Celtics (original pick - Brandon Hunter)
Thankfully for us, the Celtics had several centers of some varying degrees of quality, so we don't need to go digging for one. And while their backcourt was kind of a jumble, they have enough guards (even if one of them was Jiri Welsch). That means a forward, and preferably one of the power variety, and what do you know, the Celtics already drafted one. Brandon Hunter is a bit undersized, but he was a good rebounder and shot-blocker in college, and it's late-late in the second round anyway.
57. Dallas Mavericks (original pick - Xue Yuyang)
This was a year after Yao Ming was drafted, so Dallas was just trying to keep up with the neighbors. Xue entered the draft without permission from Chinese authorities, though, and they wouldn't let him come to America. And besides, the Mavericks already had Shawn Bradley and Mamadou N'Diaye. What they didn't have, though, was a proper backup point guard. Undrafted free agent Marquis Daniels ended up paying some point that year, but he's really more of a swingman. No, I don't consider Travis Best a proper backup, especially in '03-'04 when he averaged less than two assists per game. Paccelis Morlende is a converted shooting guard, but he's quick and can shoot from outside, and maybe bringing him over to learn from Nash would've made a difference.
58. Detroit Pistons (original pick - Andreas Glyniadakis)
In the re-draft, Glyniadakis is long gone, and Detroit isn't really looking for a contributor this year anyway, as they ended up winning the NBA championship. I wouldn't say I've forgotten about him, but Mario Austin is somewhat of a steal here. He didn't make it in Chicago but became a pretty good scorer over in Europe, and Detroit could've let him develop in the D-League for a few years before bringing him up.
I hope you've enjoyed this look at the 2003 draft's second round. There wasn't quite as much depth as in 2005, but there were still some starters and solid backups available. As for whether to keep doing these, I'll leave that in the hands of you, the readers. And yes, I know that's probably a mistake.