Archive for the ‘Draft Profiles’ Category

Cavs: The Blog: The Mock Draft: The Version 1.0: The Picks 1 Through 15

Thursday, June 20th, 2013

Welcome to the 2013 Cavs: The Blog NBA: The Mock Draft.

A brief run-down of the rules: Members of CtB’s staff are chosen at “random” to represent each of the 30 NBA teams. After each selection is made and justified, the process is hot-potatoed over to the next writer until all the picks have been made. Today, we’ll be doing picks one through 15. Tomorrow, we’ll finish off the first round.

Now, buckle up. This year’s draft promises to be the mockiest yet!

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Kevin’s Big Board, #41 – 50

Thursday, June 20th, 2013

Chad Ford’s mock draft 5.0 placed Tony Snell at #22.  I didn’t.  Well, onto some more players where someone, somewhere is bound to be wildly wrong. (And, as always, thanks to ESPN.com, draftexpress.com, statsheet.com, eurobasket.com, and kenpom.com for providing excellent, unique information)

Before delving into the top fifty though, let’s start with an honorable mention:

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Kevin’s Big Board, #51 – 60 (Or, the moment you have all been waiting for!!)

Tuesday, June 18th, 2013

The NBA draft is almost here.  Next Thursday, the Cleveland Cavaliers rule the NBA poker table, playing with the most chips and controlling the action.  And how do I plan on commemorating the event?  A huge Big Board roll out: sixty players deep, with a short blurb about each!  Why, you ask?  Because I’m a nerd.  And a bit of a masochist, as anyone attempting to “draft expert” surely is.  Over the last two years, I have enjoyed publishing a wide range of hits and misses, perpetually being able to look back and say “See, I told you about that guy”…while largely ignoring the “D’oh!” moments (I placed Damian Lilliard pretty low; small school guys have been a downfall for me).

With that as intro, I will prognosticate on the future of ten players per day, on six different days, from now until the draft, providing insights for every player that should be drafted.  Let’s start with two players that didn’t make the cut, but warrant some discussion.

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Anthony Bennett: Comparisons to the Potential #1 Picks

Wednesday, June 12th, 2013

While not my most lazily researched, this probably qualifies as my most lazily written.  Various media reports link the Cavs to half the NCAA with the first pick, but rarely does Anthony Bennett come up.  During my comparison series on players last month, several commenters inquired about the UNLV freshman though.  Due to surgery, he was unable to participate in athleticism drills at the combine, but here is his statistical profile:

Anthony Bennett – 6’ 7” in shoes, 239 lbs, 7’ 1” wingspan.  114 orating on 26 usage.  Shooting percentanges = 53 / 38 / 70.  Scoring Location Distribution = 59 / 19 / 22.  Oreb% = 10.2.  Dreb% = 21.8.  ast% = 8.7.  stl% = 1.4.  blk% = 4.5.  A:TO Ratio = 0.5.  Age 20.4 at draft.  NCAA’s 74th most difficult schedule.

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Alex Len: Historical Comparisons to the Possible #1 Picks

Tuesday, June 4th, 2013

This post is the most tedious of the series…but you’ll survive.  Chad Ford’s Mock Draft 3.0 (ESPN Insider) noted that Alex Len was still being considered by the Cavs at #1.  The Maryland sophomore was also brought up by a few commenters last week, so by popular demand, I’m back with another player comparison*.  The young Terrapin is nimble, yet 250 pounds; a 7-footer, with rim protecting and scoring potential.  Of course, he is currently rehabbing from surgery to stabilize an ankle stress fracture, leaving him unable to participate in the combine or workouts.

Len’s numerical profile is (without measurements**):

Alex Len – Age 20 at draft.  112.7 orating on 22.6 usage.  Shooting percentages = 53 / 13 / 69.  Scoring location distribution = 76 / 1 / 23.  oreb% = 13.1.  dreb% = 19.3.  ast% = 7.7.  stl% = 0.4.  to% = 15.6.  Blk% = 7.9.  A:TO Ratio = 0.6.  Postseason = NIT Final Four behind averages of 11 points, 7 boards, and 4 blocks in four games.  Played NCAA’s 96th toughest schedule***.

Solid…not spectacular.  I’m going to take a different tact for today’s article and make you work a little bit.  I’ve included six other centers, all drafted in the early to mid-first round.  If they were drafted older than Len, I included their age 20 season and their final collegiate campaign.  Look at the provided information, and “tier” the players into similar levels of prospect.  Include Len.  After ten minutes, put your pencils down…eyes on your own paper.

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Rudy Can’t Fail

Sunday, June 2nd, 2013

How you get a rude and a reckless?
Don’t you be so crude and a feckless
You been drinking brew for breakfast
Rudie can’t fail

-The Clash

Bonjour.  Frenchman Rudy Gobert, like most players in the 2013 draft is a human Rorschach test.  He has incredible strengths and glaring weaknesses.  Gobert, unlike most college players, doesn’t have an extensive body of work that we were able to watch from which to draw conclusions.  What we can do is infer from the information we know, and project onto him.

Rudy Gobert was once rumored to be 7’4,” was measured at 7’2″ in shoes at the combine along with a 7’8.5″ wingspan and a 9’7″ standing reach, both records. As has been discussed in this blog before by the estimable Kevin Hetrick, Rudy Gobert’s numbers do not exactly project “star.”  As Kevin has noted, reach alone does not correlate to production, and speed of centers has been the best predictor of NBA success.  Rudy Gobert’s 3/4 court sprint is 3.57, which isn’t great.  His agility score of 12.77 wasn’t elite either.  And as Kevin has also noted, standing reach and wingspan haven’t been great indicators of NBA success.  In fact, at the extreme end, I’ve noticed they tend to be negative predictors.  Perhaps most of these guys get so long they just can’t control their arms.  But there are players who’ve posted corresponding numbers who’ve fared well in the NBA.  Brook Lopez ran extremely similar numbers with a 3.57 and 12.77.  He has fared well in the NBA.  Andrew Nicholson posted a 3.66 3/4 court sprint and posted a similarly condorian wingspan of 7’4″.  Nicholson just posted a fairly solid rookie season, and frankly should have replaced Tyler Zeller on the all-rookie second team.

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Let’s finish this…Historical Comparisons to the Possible #1 Picks

Thursday, May 30th, 2013

Note: The disjointed nature of this post pretty ably reflects my ability to make sense of the first pick.

Having looked closely at Ben McLemore, Victor Oladipo, Otto Porter and Nerlens Noel, my draft board for the Cavs says:

  1. Noel
  2. Porter
  3. Oladipo

I am not excited about it though.  Noel’s size, athleticism and production are worthy of the first pick, but I can’t get over the two knee surgeries.   And honestly, whether the Cavs do or don’t pick him, I’m not sure there will be a lot of room for future “I told you so’s”.  What fan will legitimately be able to say, “I knew what would happen with his left knee”?

But enough of that…I need to find an answer.  I populated my “parallel universe simulator” with the thousands of requisite variables, then let it churn on hundreds of networked computers throughout the course of the week.  The hoped-for output: the answer to the question of “which selection will help win the Cavs win the most games over the next ten years?”

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Nerlens Noel: Historical Comparisons to the Possible #1 Picks

Wednesday, May 29th, 2013

Finally, the time has arrived: Nerlens Noel, the majority selection for Number One.  The type of long, super-athletic prospect that front offices drool over, the Kentucky freshman followed up on his place at the top of the high school class of 2012 with an impressive twenty-four games at Kentucky, parlaying that dossier into top-pick status.  Of course nothing is easy though; on February 12th, he tore his left ACL, sidelining him until 2014.  If not for that, this series never exists.  Nerlens numerical profile is:

6’ 10” barefoot, 7’ 3.75” wingspan, 206 lbs (apparently he played at 220 pounds.  Also no athleticism tests, but I will give Noel the benefit of the doubt of a 3.15 – 3.20 sprint time).  Age 19.2 at draft time.  109 orating on 19 usage.  59 / 0 / 53.  78 / 0 / 22.  dreb% = 21.7.  ast% = 9.3.  stl% = 3.9.  blk% = 12.9.  A:TO ratio = 0.8.

Pretty impressive stuff.  Solid rebounding; astounding steal and block rates; and decent offensive play for an 18-year old center.  Tough to find comparisons for those traits, and I’ve split this into a few categories.

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Otto Porter: Historical Comparisons to the Possible #1 Picks

Tuesday, May 28th, 2013

Finally, we arrive at a guy playing a position of need for the Cavs.  Well-rounded on the court and hard-working off it, this Georgetown sophomore fills several needs for Cleveland.  A small forward that scores efficiently, moves the ball intelligently, hustles, knocks down threes, and buckles down on defense…sounds pretty good.  But does that sound like a #1 pick?  Most people can not fathom a “yes” for that question.  Let’s look at similar players from season’s past, to see if “no” becomes a “meh”. 

Porter’s athletic and production profile is:

6’ 7.5” barefoot, 7’ 1.5” wingspan, 198 lbs, 27” no-step vert, 11.25 second agility drill, 3.40  second sprint time.  Age 20 at the draft.  119 orating on 23 usage.  Shooting percentages = 48 / 42 / 78.  Scoring locations = 50 / 26 / 24.  dreb% = 18.9.  stl% = 3.3.  blk% = 3.  ast% = 18.5.  A:TO ratio = 1.8.

Really good stuff.  Solid length, young, efficient shooting, stellar block and steal rates, sweet passing.  He is a unique prospect.  How much so though?  Similarities include:

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Victor Oladipo: Historical Comparisons to the Possible #1 picks

Tuesday, May 28th, 2013

Finding similar age / production / size / athleticism profiles for Victor Oladipo proved a tad tougher than for Ben McLemore.  High leaping youngsters that finish top-ten in the NCAA for True Shooting and top-fifty for Steal Percentage, don’t grow on trees.  So I had to stretch a bit more than with the McLemore comparisons.  The Hoosier junior’s line is:

6’ 3.25” barefoot, 6’ 9.25” wingspan, 213 lbs, 33” no-step, 10.69 agility, 3.25 sprint.  Age is 21.1 at draft time.  122 orating on 23 usage.  Shooting Percentages are 60 / 44 / 75.  Location distribution of points scored is 62 / 18 / 20.  dreb% = 13.9.  stl% = 4.5.  blk% = 2.8.  ast% = 15.1.  A:TO ratio = 0.9.

For the comparisons today, I came up with:

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