Here it is - Ridiculous Upside's first stab at mocking the 2010 NBA draft. I hope you like it, but if you don't, we'll have these updated every Monday - and the lottery on May 18th will certainly (probably) bring more changes.
Please check out our Guide To Mock Drafts to answer any questions before any flambéing occurs. After the jump we provide brief analysis on all 30 picks, along with links to blogs about each team and player. Feel the excitement!
Also, if you have any issues, leave the feedback in the comments. If there are so many issues that you think you can make a better version, post it in the fan posts and, if we like it, it could make the front page. If there are enough people that use the fan posts for their mock, we'll probably have a contest - with prizes!
1. New Jersey Nets - John Wall, PG, (Kentucky freshman)
Do I really have to write more than "duh" for the analysis? I guess so, because NetsDaily is debating John Wall versus Evan Turner right now. I really think it's closer than it appears, but I don't think anyone is going to be able to pass on Wall with the top pick.
2. Minnesota Timberwolves - Evan Turner, SG/SF (Ohio State junior)
My man Stop-N-Pop over at Canis Hoopus actually has DeMarcus Cousins at the top of his big board, but I don't see the Wolves passing on Turner unless he performs poorly in workouts (or declines to work out for Minnesota, a la Stephen Curry). In the end, neither does Stop-N-Pop, saying "He is a fantastic defensive rebounder for his position. He also carries a TS% of 58.1%. Lots of possessions + lots of assists + lots of rebounds + good shooting = you can't pass this kid up."
3. Sacramento Kings - DeMarcus Cousins, C (Kentucky freshman)
Sactown Royalty has a post with some great discussion on which player the Kings should draft and ultimately, after reading through the comments, it comes down to either the best available player or a big ol' center. I think right now Cousins probably fits in regard to both, but I could also see Derrick Favors make the leap once workouts begin (moving Jason Thompson to the 5).
4. Golden State Warriors - Derrick Favors, PF (Georgia Tech freshman)
The Warriors definitely need help in the front court, as I learned while watching them when they transitioned into the Golden State D-Leaguers. Golden State of Mind's Poor Man's Commish did a pretty good job of breaking down why the Warriors would like Favors while he was tuning into the NCAA Tournament: "Favors is a big body -- not too heavy, and certainly not considered skinny -- who can run the floor, rebound, make inside moves, all of that. He doesn't have a midrange game, but neither did Amare Stoudemire when he came into the NBA, although Favors will need to work on conditioning and chiseling out his frame. He's certainly far better than Andris Beidrins as-is, and look how much the Warriors are paying AB and how badly Warrior fans miss him. Finally, Favors is only a freshman and he has a great attitude, which means he is one hot commodity.
5. Washington Wizards - Wesley Johnson, SF (Syracuse junior)
I really, really like Wesley Johnson. He didn't play last season after transferring from Iowa State, but there's a lot to like about the guy. He can shoot, run the floor, and hit the boards pretty hard at 'Cuse. Unfortunately, he'll be 23 when the NBA season starts and he played in Syracuse's zone defense (tough to project to the NBA). For more on this pick from a Wizards fan, check Rook6980's in-depth profile of Johnson over at Bullets Forever.
6. Philadelphia 76ers - Al-Farouq Aminu, F (Wake Forest sophomore)
I readily admit I'm not in love with this pick, but it's the one I made. Really, the Sixers aren't going to be happy with this draft pick unless they are helped out in the lottery or are able to trade down and pick somebody that doesn't replicate, essentially, what they already have. Plus, it seems to be fate.
7. Detroit Pistons - Ed Davis, PF (North Carolina sophomore)
It doesn't seem that the Pistons fan base will like me for making this pick, but 6-foot-10 with 58% shooting while getting to the line and cleaning the boards is pretty hard to overlook. In fact, I think he'd probably be in consideration with the top five in the draft had he not been injured to end the season. On the plus side, he has some upside - and some might even say it's ridiculous.
8. Los Angeles Clippers - Xavier Henry, SG/SF (Kansas freshman)
This is probably the highest any mock draft has Henry going, but it's more due to team need than anything else. The Clippers have lottery picks in Eric Gordon and Blake Griffin at the 2 and 4 already, plus former all-stars at the point and center positions (Steve Perrin from ClipsNation helpfully pointed that out when I asked what the Clippers could possibly be interested in). Henry is about as NBA-ready as he's going to get (which could be construed as he just doesn't have much upside left), but I don't think the Clippers should pass on the three-point shooter that fills a need.
9. Utah Jazz - Cole Aldrich, C (Kansas junior)
With the Jazz having to play Kyrylo Fesenko as much as they have during the playoffs, I think it's rather clear that a big man is needed. "Is Cole Aldrich on a LOST-type collision course with the Jazz?" Basketball John asked. Well, yes, probably. He seems "old school", he's smart and he's tough, all things the Jazz typically value when drafting. If Aldrich is here, I think this almost has to be the pick. At worst, they finally get the next Greg Ostertag (Kansas alum and all)!
10. Indiana Pacers - Greg Monroe, PF (Georgetown sophomore)
This seems to be what the Pacers fans want and I'm happy obliging them. Pairing him in the frontcourt with fellow Hoya Roy Hibbert would also create one of the biggest (if not the the biggest) frontline in the NBA. Monroe is smart and skilled, though he doesn't seem to have the heart most people would prefer out of a lottery big man. Maybe Tyler Hansbrough can transfer some of his?
The Hornets could probably have used a small forward just as well at this spot, but there really isn't one available without reaching. In Orton, they'll get their center of the future as well as their top backup in the frontcourt right now (with Emeka being able to slide to the 4). Jeff Bower has shown he knows what he's doing with the draft and I don't think he's scared of taking a potential-laden pick (especially since he doesn't have to worry about coaching him).
12. Memphis Grizzlies - Patrick Patterson, PF (Kentucky junior)
It's kind of surprising that his draft stock actually rose this season while his production dropped, but he showed maturity, leadership and all of the other nice words you'd expect out of someone older than the 21-year-old from Kentucky. With Memphis drafting for upside with their first pick last season, I'd expect them to play it safe this year.
With the possibility of Chris Bosh leaving, a big man seems to be the likeliest pick at this juncture (both because it fills a potential need and their aren't many other options available). He's a versatile shot blocker with a sweet nickname (The Nightmare) and emerging basketball game. I might be overrating him based on the Tourney, but NBA GM's are known to do that as well.
This just seems like a best available player pick. Whiteside has an incredible boom-or-bust aura about him, with the upside being high and the downside being... blech. Still, with the Rockets looking for a big man (and the chances of luring Bosh vary each day), I think Whiteside is the pick.
15. Milwaukee Bucks - Donatas Motiejunas, F/C (Lithuania)
The Bucks need a power forward to play next to Andrew Bogut because Ersan Ilyasova just really didn't get it done. I'm not sure Motiejunas would be able to either (though he can at least handle the offensive end), but he is the best available 7-footer and he's been compared to Toni Kukoc - both of which are never a bad thing on a team trying to build a championship roster.
16. Minnesota Timberwolves - James Anderson, SG (Oklahoma State junior)
Last season, Minnesota took too many point guards. This season, I apparently envision it being wing men. For what it's worth, it'd seem worthwhile to package a couple of their picks and move back into the lottery, but for now I'll slot the sweet-shooting wing who Stop-N-Pop describes as this year's James Harden. Can't hurt, can it?
17. Chicago Bulls - Gordon Hayward, G/F (Butler sophomore)
Is he being overrated based on his performance in the NCAA tournament? Yes. Is he a versatile, smart player who can shoot? Yes again. I asked your friendly BullsBlogger what the Bulls might be looking for and he essentially said three-point shooting, preferably from a 2-guard and preferably with athleticism. Though Henry and Anderson both fit that description better than Hayward, it does seem Hayward will be able to step in and help an NBA team without too much trouble.
18. Miami Heat - Solomon Alabi, C (Florida State sophomore)
It was painfully obvious during their quick playoff run that Udonis Haslem can't do it all in the frontcourt, making this pick easier than expected. He can score and block shots and be 7-foot-1, all things that should be of interest to the Heat. He also went to Florida State, which is a bonus (because I like Florida State, not because Miami is in the state of Florida).
19. Boston Celtics - Paul George, SF (Fresno State sophomore)
What do the Celtics need? I've been lurking over at CelticsBlog for awhile, but they really seem quite content (even Scalabrine gets some love). That said, I'm going to go with the best available player, at least in the eyes of TAFKAMikeBourn. Check this post for everything you need to know about George (and don't ask why he didn't use a picture of Paul George).
The Spurs are pretty set as well, with no immediate needs (sure, a center would be nice, but they've been getting by forever without one and seem to like the older free-agent types to fill that role). That said, I will vote for Babbitt to fill the Matt Bonner-role. He might even be a better Bonner, if you believe the hype.
21. Oklahoma City Thunder - Larry Sanders, PF (VCU junior)
This pick probably isn't going to need to contribute right away, which is why it makes sense to pick a big with potential (he at least has better numbers than Byron Mullens, if nothing else). He kind of replicates the skillset of Serge Ibaka, but if one Ibaka on the floor is nice, two would be even better! Right? Eric Maynor was also his college point guard - which could help his development.
22. Portland Trailblazers - Quincy Pondexter, F (Washington senior)
It would make sense for the Blazers to trade down a bit to get a true power forward, but if that doesn't happen I think it makes sense to go with an athlete with toughness, energy and a willing defender off the bench. I don't know if it helps or hurts that he played at Washington, but the Blazers should at least be familiar with him. BlazersEdge has had their eye on him as well.
23. Minnesota Timberwolves - Eric Bledsoe, G (Kentucky freshman)
As I said, I think it'd make sense for Minnesota to trade back up into the lottery, but that's not something I have the power to do. Instead, I'll slot Bledsoe here as another shooter off the bench. This pick probably isn't going to be popular, but I don't think Bledsoe drops further than this if he stays in.
25. Memphis Grizzlies - Elliot Williams, G (Memphis Sophomore)
With O.J. Mayo apparently sliding over to the point, the Grizzlies will need to fill in at the two - and what better way to do it than with the local kid? Williams can play defense, is a good athlete and could also fill in at the point when needed.
26. Oklahoma City Thunder - Stanley Robinson SF/PF (UConn senior)
I really like Robinson and he seems like an OKC type of guy - a lanky, athletic defender that can play multiple positions. This is also probably a good time to say I'm not a fan of Jeff Green.
27. New Jersey Nets - Damion James, F (Texas senior)
New Jersey can use just about every position and James is the best player available. Perfect? Yes. James could possibly play both forward spots in the NBA and he can shoot (plus he's not a bad rebounder). The reason I dropped him is because he looked terrible against Aminu in the Tournament.
28. Memphis Grizzlies - Devin Ebanks, SF (West Virginia sophomore)
Really, he should go back to the Mountaineers. Unfortunately, that's kind of a scary thing to do after seeing what happened to teammate Da'Sean Butler. It seems like the Grizzlies will end up resigning Rudy Gay, but if they're not able to, Ebanks reminds me a lot of the current Grizzlies star.
29. Orlando Magic - Dominique Jones, G (South Florida junior)
Since the Magic aren't really in need of any certain player, I'm deferring to Jonathan Givony from DraftExpress on this one. With Orlando possibly losing Anthony Johnson and Jason Williams to free agency (retirement?), Jones seems like he's worth the gamble.
30. Washington Wizards - Willie Warren, G (Oklahoma sophomore)
Why not? Warren was projected as a top five pick coming into the season, so to get him with the last pick of the first round would be quite the coup for a team with a lot of holes. I'm not sure what happens when he gets to the NBA, but it's probably worth this pick to try and figure it out.