I'm sure all the NBA fans have read the winners and losers, steals and team grades articles in the aftermath of Thursday's draft. Here are a few of my takes. I'm looking forward to reading your answers to these questions in the comment section.
Which was the smartest team on draft day?
Charlotte, Milwaukee and Cleveland all did well, and I almost want to say Miami for picking up Shabazz Napier by trading up from the 26th to 24th pick by simply trading the 55th pic plus a 2019 second round pick to Charlotte, but I'm going with the Denver Nuggets. They picked up Arron Afflalo earlier in the day for Eric Fournier and the 56th pick, then traded Doug McDermott, selected 11th, to Chicago for the 16th and 19th picks, center Jusuf Nurkic from Croatia and guard Gary Harris from Michigan State. They later picked up Nikola Jokic, a power forward from Serbia with the 41st pick. The Serbian guy might not get along with the Croatian guy, and Harris plays the same position as Afflalo, who may opt out at the end of next season, but Denver picked up a lot of good pieces for nothing.
Which team was the dumbest?
I'm going with Chicago. See above for the trade. Sorry, I'm just not a believer in McDermott.
I don't like what Philadelphia did either. Embiid might prove to be a superstar, but Philly knew he would be out five to eight months - this is after selecting injured Nerlens Noel last year and trading Andre Igoudala for Andrew Bynum two years ago. And then they took Dario Saric with the 12th pick. Saric had already signed a two year contract to play in Turkey. Obviously, this team plans to be in the lottery again next year - poor Philly fans.
Which team made the best pick of the day?
I could go with Miami and Shabazz Napier or San Antonio and Kyle Anderson, but I like Milwaukee's selection of Jabari Parker. Parker was belittled as the safe pick on the eve of the draft, but he's "safe" for a reason - he truly is the most NBA-ready of all the candidates. Parker will play small forward whereas he was enlisted as a power forward/center out of necessity by Duke. He's my Rookie of the year.
Which was the dumbest Pick of the Day?
There's not much debate about this one. Toronto selected Bruno Caboclo from Brazil with the 20th pick. Among the players still left on the board at the time: Shabazz Napier, Rodney Hood and Kyle Anderson. Morons! Trade down!
Who will be the biggest bust in this draft?
This is a combination of place in the draft, injury status, NBA-ready skills and athleticism and having a clear NBA position to play. I say Aaron Gordon. He might be another Dennis Rodman, but I just don't take him with the 4th pick. I definitely like his athleticism and defense, but he measured out at 6'7" at the combine, is a 40% free throw shooter, and has no offense besides dunking.
Which LA team did best?
You might not think this is a fair question considering the Laker had the seventh pick, but still, in relation to the order of the pick, the Lakers did the smart thing, and picked the best player available, Julius Randle, and then later traded for point guard Jordan Clarkson from Missouri for cash. The Clippers selected C.J. Wilcox from Washington with the 28th pick. They already have J.J. Reddick. I don't understand why teams don't trade down much in the NBA Draft like they do in football.
Ok, your turn. What are you answers to these six questions? Feel free to add Alford as one of the biggest losers of the Draft – Billy Donovan didn’t have anyone drafted.