NBA Mock Draft Pick #7 -- Anthony Bennett, Forward, UNLV
In a trade, Liberty Ballers acquired the seventh pick on behalf of the 76ers. Details of the trade are as follows:
#7 (via Sac) - Anthony Bennett
Spencer Hawes (!!!)
#35 (via Philly)
#11 (via Philly)
#25 (via LAC)
SB Nation's 76ers blog Liberty Ballers explains the pick:
Seems like you either love the 6'8 power forward from UNLV or you hate him. Like Jonathan Tjarks, I love him. I think he's a more athletic Zach Randolph. He played on a UNLV team that passed the ball a total of six times all season and still managed to put up strong numbers.
While I made a terrifically strong push to trade Thaddeus Young (ask every other GM.), I didn't find the deal that would be worth it just yet, so he's somebody I'd look to move at the deadline. Bennett can find his legs behind Thad until then or, if either or both of them can maintain consistency from beyond, play next to each other. A Jrue-Evan-Thad-Bennett-DeAndre lineup is as intriguing as it is brow-creasing.
Anthony's got a lot of work to do on his defense, but I can't emphasize how selfish that UNLV team was. Plus, he was only a freshman and there's plenty of examples of players improving their defense after coming out as a freshman -- Thad Young, for instance.
I couldn't be looking forward to Bennett's offensive game any more if he had wings and breathed fire. Kid can do everything on that end and if he keeps working at his game, he'll be unstoppable for a lot of years.
SB Nation's 76ers blog Liberty Ballers explains the trade:
Have you ever been constipated? Not just "eat some Raisin Bran!" constipated, but the kind of constipated where you have to cut off your butt and just let it fly? That's what it feels like to trade Spencer Hawes. Sure, I've now got a rabid case of Assless Chaps, but that's totally worth it, don't you think?
SB Nation's Clips Nation explains their part in the deal:
Clippers give up Jordan and move down 10 spaces in the draft. In exchange they get a serviceable center in Hawes to replace Jordan and a floor stretcher in Richardson (who we're assuming passed his physical since the trade went through).
Jordan has underperformed his contract, and Hawes' contract is one year shorter. Truth be told, Hawes' numbers are not significantly worse than Jordan's in most area's, he makes his free throws, and he can stretch the floor a bit for Blake Griffin. Add in Hawes' passing ability, and he's actually a pretty good fit with Griffin.
Richardson is a risk, but if healthy could be very successful playing next to Chris Paul (look what Willie Green did there). Moving down in this draft isn't as bad as in some others, as the talent is a bit muddled at this point -- there will almost certainly be players available at 35 that end up being better than the player chosen 25 (though finding the right one is the trick of course). Also, it saves the Clippers a guaranteed contract and a required roster spot for the 25th pick on a team that is in win now mode. Pick 35 will end up competing with minimum salary vets for a roster spot rather than handing the spot to a rookie.
That's my story anyway.
Updated 2013 NBA Mock Draft Board:
1. Cleveland Cavaliers: NERLENS NOEL
2. Orlando Magic BEN MCLEMORE
3. Washington Wizards OTTO PORTER
4. Charlotte Hornets ALEX LEN
5. Phoenix Suns VICTOR OLADIPO
6. New Orleans Pelicans TREY BURKE
7. Philadelphia 76ers ANTHONY BENNETT
8. Detroit Pistons
9. Minnesota Timberwolves
10. Portland Trail Blazers
11. Sacramento Kings
12. Oklahoma City Thunder
13. Dallas Mavericks
14. Utah Jazz
15. Milwaukee Bucks
16. Boston Celtics
17. Atlanta Hawks
18. Atlanta Hawks
19. Cleveland Cavaliers
20. Chicago Bulls
21. Utah Jazz
22. Brooklyn Nets
23. Indiana Pacers
24. New York Knicks
25. Los Angeles Clippers
26. Minnesota Timberwolves
27. Denver Nuggets
28. San Antonio Spurs
29. Oklahoma City Thunder
30. Phoenix Suns