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View Full Version : Tbird 2012 NBA draft analysis: My own big board for this year's draft and some draft strategy discussion



thunderbird1245
06-27-2012, 05:26 PM
Like all draft rooms for an NBA team, I put together a bigboard each year of all the NBA prospects, mostly based on my own filmwork in my case, though sometimes I can only go on research and opinions of others.

Anyway, instead of doing a pointless mock draft that won’t have any chance of being correct, I instead am going to list my top 41 NBA bigboard, with an emphasis on making it “Pacers- Centric”….in other words, I have put our current roster, needs, strengths and weaknesses, contracts, coaching staff, and every other factor together along with my evaluations of the players to put them in this order.

I am listing 41 players on my big board, which will exclude all foreign players since I basically haven’t seen them at all and have no real opinions on them….so please factor that in. And I know I’ll have lots of disagreements on my order, so feel free to discuss all of that in the comments.The number I have is 41, because that is how many players (excluding foreigners) that I considered to be good enough players to make the league directly from the draft. I included many players who are undersized for their positions, but only if I considered them elite enough of players to make the league despite whatever their limitations. 2 notable exclusions are Jae Crowder from Marquette, and Robbie Hummel from Purdue, 2 really good college players who I consider to not be sure NBA guys despite their collegiate careers due to their lack of size or injuries. The 41 guys I listed I think all can make a roster at some point.

Having said all that, this is my Tbird Pacer 2012 draft big board:

1. ANTHONY DAVIS. Obviously the gem in the draft, Isee a lot of Tim Duncan in him.

2. DAMIAN LILLARD. I think he projects as a top 6player at a critical position in the NBA. The only current NBA point guards I wouldn’t
trade for Lillard are Rondo, Westbrook, Rose, Parker, Paul, and maybe Nash, if you disregard his age.

3. TYLER ZELLER. A big with a high motor andcharacter who will play 15 years in the league, perfect fit for us as a 4/5 “player x”, with Indiana ties and in a critical position. Can immediately play starters minutes for us as our first big off the bench and can be a franchise cornerstone for the next decade….I think he can play half his minutes playing besides Hibbert, which is why I rank him so high.

4. BRADLEY BEAL. A perfect compliment long term toPaul George, I think Beal will play in multiple all star games down the line.Not a superstar, but a fine player who scores a ton of points at this level ifused properly.

5. MICHAEL KIDD-GILCHREST. A guy who play sextremely hard and is tough minded. I think he is a 14-15 point a game guy inthe league with a high motor who is physical and tough as a rebounder and defender.Kind of a Gerald Wallace type.

6. THOMAS ROBINSON. While I don’t think he is an All Star ever, I think he has a nice long term career as a 4 man in this league. Lunch pail guy as a starter for 10 years, a lot like a Horace Grant type.

7. MOE HARKLESS. I think he is 95% as good as Kidd-Gilchrest. Love his aggressiveness, swagger, and size for his position. Ithink he will become a good shooter in time if he is developed properly.Projects to be a dynamite rebounder and defender. He reminds me a ton of Paul George,maybe just a half a rung under him as a player but still a clearly coveted player.

8. JOHN HENSON. Skinny and I am not sure of theupside, but I think a defensive minded, rangy big man who is athletic couldpotentially be a good fit for us alongside Hibbert. He definitely needs todevelop his body, but I like him as a rim protector and I would be willing togamble to see if he can become a Serge Ibaka type, though Larry Sanders is morewhat I expect.

9. TERRENCE ROSS. I haven’t studied him as much asothers, but it appears as if he can clearly score the ball and well respected guys I know really like him.

10. DION WALTERS. I love his physique and the factthat he swallowed his pride and came off the bench at Syracuse. He is athletic as hell and can really get to the basket, and seems like a potential good fit next to Paul George long term.

11. JEFF TAYLOR: He is such a superior defender thatI have to rate him here, above some other more highly touted guys. To win longterm, you need guys who can guard the Rose, Rondo, Wade, Westbrook kind of guys, and Taylor I think can be a defender of elite types like that. If you value defense like I do, you have to put him high on the list of guys you like.

12. ARNETT MOULTRIE: A long, big, athletic 4 man in a position of need. I’d be hoping long term that he could gain some strength and play some backup center for us as well. If he hits his total potential hecould be a great fit next to Hibbert, but I admit I have doubts, still I put him here. Hopefully he can learn to defend.

13. ANDRE DRUMMOND: A low motor, inconsistent raw big man who didn’t do much in college. Still, at worst I think he projects to be a decent to good backup center, and that isn’t a bad thing. And if he would happen to hit his potential, he could eventually be better than anyone in this draft other than Davis.

14. QUINCY MILLER: I like his body type and overall game, and think he has potential to be a high quality starter, though not an All Star. The fact that you have to wait on him knocks him down to here,because he clearly isn’t ready yet.

15. HARRISON BARNES: Obviously I am not as high onhim as some teams, but he will be a nice player, maybe even become very similarto Danny Granger. Still as a fit long term next to Paul George I am looking forsomething different, and the fact that he can’t get his own shot off thedribble concerns me. Still I bet he averages 17 points a game eventually andmaybe more, but he just leaves me cold.

16. FAB MELO: I think he is a physical, defensive minded backup center. While he sucks on offense and likely will never be good in the low post, a big who can defend the rim for cheap money has value….I put him here.

17. FESTUS EZELI: Raw big man with size, similar in potential to Melo. A role player for cheap money, rim protectors have high value in my book.

18. JEREMY LAMB: Maybe I have him too low, but hejust doesn’t light my fire. I know he will go much higher than on my big board,but he just plays so lethargic sometimes, and I don’t like his body language.Maybe I need to watch more UConn tape. Still, a high quality shooter than at worst can be a scorer off the bench, and maybe can start someday on the right team.

19. ORLANDO JOHNSON: I love his attitude and game,and love that he can make tough shots. Great chemistry guy, plays with guts and intelligence, will be a nice role player for someone as a scorer off the bench with a chance to be a plus defender as well.

20. KENDALL MARSHALL: probably an average to slightly above point guard in the NBA, very good passer. His horrible defense probably bothers me more than all of you reading this, but this is where I put him.

21. ANDREW NICHOLSON: A nice back to the basket guy with some skill, seems like a back up 4 man to me on a decent team. Is ready more or less to play right away, which moves him up some.

22. AUSTIN RIVERS: Gunslinger with irrational confidence in his own game. I think he is selfish and a lazy defender, but his pedigree and crossover dribble are top notch. Has potential as an instant offense guy off the bench but not sure he’d accept that role.

23. MARQUIS TEAGUE: Lots of holes in his game but heis an explosive athlete with a great first step. I think he may grow into a really good point guard defender someday if he works at it. Never going to be great but can be good if he has time to develop.

24. PERRY JONES: nice guy off the court, and way too nice on the court. Lots of sizzle, not much steak. Strikes me as immature and goofy, doesn’t play hard all the time. Still a lot of raw material to workwith, but he reminds me of the underachieving Tim Thomas.

25. JERED SULLINGER: I see him as a backup, 18-20minute backup power forward who might be able to score for you some but will be a defensive liability. Somewhere between Clarence Weatherspoon and Ike Diogu.
26. JOHN JENKINS: A sniper. Mostly a one trick pony,but it is a hell of a trick! Kyle Korver, JJ Redick kind of guy and career.

27. ROYCE WHITE: A unique kid with a different personality, a lot of baggage there, still has some talent but he just doesn’t excite me that much. I don’t see who he guards well at the NBA level. Has a lot of Boris Diaw to his game, and that isn’t a compliment.

28. TERRENCE JONES: I know he will go higher than this, but he just seems like a jack of all trades type of guy to me, with no one great skill. Who does he guard, I don’t know. Kind of reminds me of Devin Eubanks, but he went as a second rounder I think.

29. MEYERS LEONARD: I know he might belong a little higher in most people’s eyes, but he just doesn’t strike me as a dedicated player who loves the game to work and improve. Measures out better and plays against chairs in workouts well, but he wasn’t that good in the big 10. Still he is a big body and possibly can become something if I am wrong.

30. MIKE SCOTT: veteran guy from Virginia. Reallynice numbers playing in their slowdown style. I bet he ends up being a nice player for someone, he is fundamentally sound but not really athletic and explosive, plus he is older than most everyone else in the draft.

31. WILL BARTON: I know Indiana is considering him,and he isn’t bad but he needs some major added strength to be able to play.Slinky, wiry, awkward looking player who is strangely effective. Still, skinny wings who aren’t explosive are a dime a dozen, and I don’t see that one awesomes kill that he needs to make it.

32. MILES PLUMLEE: Plumlee sucked at Duke most ofthe time, but he will stick in the league as a scrub back up center for somebody because he is athletic enough to play and run the floor, and set somegood screens. As scarce as backup bigs are, he should find a niche for a few years.

33. DARIUS MILLER: I think sticks in the league as a high character guy who can make mid range jump shots, but won’t be a major contributor to a winning team.

34. DRAYMOND GREEN: I think sticks in the league as a high character, low risk undersized backup 4 man, but that is all he is.

35. DREW GORDON: I think makes the league as are bounding specialist with enough upside to merit working with.

36. TYSHAWN TAYLOR: I think sticks in the league as a backup point guard…..though I admit he might be underrated in this list. Still a point guard who turns it over as much as he did in college scares the hell out of me.

37. JORDAN TAYLOR: I think he is way underrated andcan easily make a roster. I’d love to take him in the second round somehow as a3rd point guard and see if we can develop him. I think that Wisconsin system severely limited him.

38. DORON LAMB: I think sticks in the league as ashooter, but I have doubts whether he can crack the rotation on a good team.

39. KIM ENGLISH: yet another high quality shooter int his draft, English can stroke it, but his release to me is a bit slower than Jenkins was, and I don’t think he can guard well. I still think he makes a roster though.

40. TONY WROTEN: All potential with no real game, I need to study him more. Nice NBA frame, but in the little I have seen from him he is a turnover waiting to happen and he can’t shoot. Just a project at thispoint.

41. JON SHURNA: He sticks in the league due to hisability to shoot from deep as a pick/pop guy. Lots of those guys have longcareers.

Depending on the price, I think any of the guys in the top 8 are worth trading up to get for us if possible. The realistic targets to get up high enough for are Zeller, Harkless, and Henson. Lillard is worth it too, but I don’t think we have the ammunition to get there to #6, which is where I think he goes.

Harkless I think could be available in the mid to low teens,and if he is I’d be very happy to move up 10 spots or so and snag him, and if Henson slides I’d be ready to go after him as well.

If you are staying at #26, just follow my draft board to figure out who I would take as they come off. I think Taylor and Miller are the highest rated guys on my board with a chance to actually be there at #26. Picking that late, I think it is important to stick to your draft board as the picks happen, and be opportunistic if someone slides to you.

This should generate some interesting discussion. I know I am off a little with the normal draft gurus, but this is how I see things froma Pacer point of view.
As always, the above is just my opinion.

Tbird

Sparhawk
06-27-2012, 06:28 PM
Even though he's not on your board, I think there is something special about Jae Crowder. I'd love to have him on my team as a backup SF. If he loses some weight, I think he'll gain some speed. Just a tough physical defender who can shoot a little.

I like Royce White, Jeff Taylor and Quincy Miller. I seem to like a lot of SF it seems cause I think a guy like PJIII has the best chance to reach his potential here cause of the Pacer environment with hard working players who would challenge PJIII and our excellent coaching staff.

Lillard is my 1st choice, just wish there was a way to get Lillard and one of the SF I like.

Zeller is really the only PF/C guy I like other than Moultrie, and I'm not that big on Moultrie myself (although I was a few weeks ago).

Kemo
06-27-2012, 06:42 PM
5. MICHAEL KIDD-GILCHREST. A guy who play sextremely hard and is tough minded. I think he is a 14-15 point a game guy inthe league with a high motor who is physical and tough as a rebounder and defender.Kind of a Gerald Wallace type.

sextremely? lol ;)

I know i know... I do that too sometimes when typing something out lol... just thought it was funny

D-BONE
06-27-2012, 06:50 PM
Taylor or Miller would be great for me if we stay at 26. If neither of them, O. Johnson or Jenkins. Just not Draymon if we keep the pick.

maragin
06-27-2012, 08:03 PM
TBird,

Just wanted to thank you for all of the work you put in on all of these articles. During the summer I go into sports hibernation, especially after a painful playoff exit. I didn't watch another playoff game after our game 6. Your updates and insight keep me coming back to PD in the offseason to get to know our potential draft picks without spending countless hours following college ball. Appreciate your help in making this an informative, intelligent sports forum. You, and many of the other PD contributors, make me a smarter fan. Keep up the good work.

maragin

SycamoreKen
06-27-2012, 08:11 PM
I too enjoy reading your stuff, especially with your background. Thanks for your effort.

IndyPacer
06-27-2012, 08:38 PM
KENDALL MARSHALL: probably an average to slightly above point guard in the NBA, very good passer. His horrible defense probably bothers me more than all of you reading this, but this is where I put him.


Don't be so sure...

People love his superb passing, but at the end of the day I think he's going to be surrendering more points than he scores or facilitates most of the time against NBA point guards.

Pacergeek
06-27-2012, 08:47 PM
Lol @ zeller over Kidd-Gilchrist

xBulletproof
06-27-2012, 09:02 PM
I feel similar with Kendall Marshall. Which is why I haven't said much. He can have an elite skill in passing, but when his other weaknesses make it difficult to keep him on the court, it's rather useless from the bench.

I'm just not all that interested.

xBulletproof
06-27-2012, 09:03 PM
Lol @ zeller over Kidd-Gilchrist

Did you read the intro, or just look at the rankings?

Pacergeek
06-27-2012, 10:51 PM
Did you read the intro, or just look at the rankings?

I did. MKG would help the Pacers more than Zeller

IndyPacer
06-27-2012, 11:44 PM
I'm not nearly the fan of Zeller that Tbird apparently is, but I can see how well he could fit in for Indiana. It would be really nice to have a 7-footer who is so quick and can play PF and C.

I would rate Jeremy Lamb much higher. He needs to get stronger, but I think he does a lot of things quite well.

xBulletproof
06-27-2012, 11:51 PM
I did. MKG would help the Pacers more than Zeller

So MKG for 15 minutes per game behind Paul and Danny would help more than having a competent backup PF/C?

I'm not seeing that one. In the playoffs (and all year it seemed) we got murdered when Hibbert was on the bench. If Zeller can play PF and keep Tyler on the bench that's even better. Tyler looked more lost than a KKK member in Compton this year.

pizza guy
06-28-2012, 12:22 AM
Zeller is a guy I hadn't really thought much about for the Pacers, but if TPTB swing a deal for him, I'll be very happy. He'd be an immediate improvement over the treacherous back-up rotation in our front court. Plus, I wouldn't want to be anybody who went to Duke trying to drive the lane against Zeller and Hans.

wintermute
06-28-2012, 04:15 AM
So MKG for 15 minutes per game behind Paul and Danny would help more than having a competent backup PF/C?

I'm not seeing that one. In the playoffs (and all year it seemed) we got murdered when Hibbert was on the bench. If Zeller can play PF and keep Tyler on the bench that's even better. Tyler looked more lost than a KKK member in Compton this year.

Always go with talent. If we somehow landed MKG, I suppose we'd be thinking of moving Granger for a PF/C.

On the one hand, I do agree that this year's top rated talent (MKG, Beal, T-Rob, Barnes) doesn't have great upside, so I can understand why TBird may like a lower ranked player (like Lillard for example) more. Zeller, though - it strikes me that his main selling point is that he has solid skills at a rare position. TBird obviously sees more than that in him, and he's earned the benefit of the doubt on this board, so we'll see.

avoidingtheclowns
06-28-2012, 05:21 AM
MICHAEL KIDD-GILCHREST. A guy who play sextremely hard...

Fifty Shades of Gilchrist?

Trader Joe
06-28-2012, 08:57 AM
You have to be the first person I've seen who has compared Anthony Davis to Tim Duncan TBird.

Slick Pinkham
06-29-2012, 09:37 PM
32. MILES PLUMLEE: Plumlee sucked at Duke most ofthe time, but he will stick in the league as a scrub back up center for somebody because he is athletic enough to play and run the floor, and set somegood screens. As scarce as backup bigs are, he should find a niche for a few years.



Thanks tbird, that's very encouraging

Slick Pinkham
06-30-2012, 12:39 AM
12. ARNETT MOULTRIE: A long, big, athletic 4 man in a position of need. I’d be hoping long term that he could gain some strength and play some backup center for us as well. If he hits his total potential hecould be a great fit next to Hibbert, but I admit I have doubts, still I put him here. Hopefully he can learn to defend.


14. QUINCY MILLER: I like his body type and overall game, and think he has potential to be a high quality starter, though not an All Star. The fact that you have to wait on him knocks him down to here,because he clearly isn’t ready yet.


17. FESTUS EZELI: Raw big man with size, similar in potential to Melo. A role player for cheap money, rim protectors have high value in my book.


19. ORLANDO JOHNSON: I love his attitude and game,and love that he can make tough shots. Great chemistry guy, plays with guts and intelligence, will be a nice role player for someone as a scorer off the bench with a chance to be a plus defender as well.


23. MARQUIS TEAGUE: Lots of holes in his game but heis an explosive athlete with a great first step. I think he may grow into a really good point guard defender someday if he works at it. Never going to be great but can be good if he has time to develop.


24. PERRY JONES: nice guy off the court, and way too nice on the court. Lots of sizzle, not much steak. Strikes me as immature and goofy, doesn’t play hard all the time. Still a lot of raw material to workwith, but he reminds me of the underachieving Tim Thomas.


30. MIKE SCOTT: veteran guy from Virginia. Reallynice numbers playing in their slowdown style. I bet he ends up being a nice player for someone, he is fundamentally sound but not really athletic and explosive, plus he is older than most everyone else in the draft.


31. WILL BARTON: I know Indiana is considering him,and he isn’t bad but he needs some major added strength to be able to play.Slinky, wiry, awkward looking player who is strangely effective. Still, skinny wings who aren’t explosive are a dime a dozen, and I don’t see that one awesomes kill that he needs to make it.



only seven on the board at #26 that tbird rated above Plumlee for Pacer's fit, and one is Orlando.

I am feeling a little better about the pick based on this analysis.

wintermute
06-30-2012, 05:03 AM
So with picks 26 and 36, we ended up with the players ranked 19 and 32 on Tbird's big board. At the end of the day, that doesn't seem too bad. We could accept that and move on.

Or instead, we could continue arguing whether Plumlee was a reach (I still think so, but it's probably not by a lot, and certainly not worth making a huge fuss over). Or we could continue arguing endlessly about how much better we could have done (a question that can't be answered for years yet).

Anyway, like everyone I hope Tbird can find some time to make a full eval of Miles Plumlee. Finding footage on him shouldn't be difficult at least :)

Kstat
06-30-2012, 05:16 AM
Tbird...I'm not going to argue With Drummond. Obviously, I'm biased.

But Moultrie at #12 (without mentioning that he acts like a spoiled little *******) is absurd.

<iframe width="560" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/LMNWeIR_VOY" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

This is the most selfish attitude I've ever seen from an NBA prospect.

pacer4ever
06-30-2012, 05:27 AM
Tbird...I'm not going to argue With Drummond. Obviously, I'm biased.

But Moultrie at #12 (without mentioning that he acts like a spoiled little *******) is absurd.

<iframe width="560" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/LMNWeIR_VOY" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

This is the most selfish attitude I've ever seen from an NBA prospect.

I wouldn't be mad if he played hard but as soon as he made those comments I just laughed. A guy who is as soft and as bad of motor as him cant call his teammates out only IMO a leader can do that. As soon as he made thoes comments his team just quit on him and I dont blame them. I mean if MKG was in his situation and did it I wouldn't mind because he earned that right with how much effort he gives.

Kstat
06-30-2012, 05:42 AM
It's isn't even just the comments. The film spotighring his horrifically selfish play in both ends of the floor is damming by itself.