[Bumping this to the front page - a draft review and a look at the current roster. - R]
Now that the hoopla is over, our big night behind us, it's time to move on and look forward to a bright future for our franchise. That's right, it is a bright future for our Hornets. I've seen a lot of brash reactions to our picks at 10 and 46, and I'm here to tell you, it is completely unnecessary. Let's take a look at our picks, and how they affect us going forward....
#1 Pick - Anthony Davis, PF
Not much analysis needed here. He is the man. He should step in quickly and fill a hole at PF for many years. He will be a very good defender from game 1, and he has more than enough ability to develop a good offensive game. This guy was a guard through most of his high school days, he still has very good handle and incredible hands for a player his size. He was basically the 3rd offensive option at UK, so I believe he has more to offer offensively than we have seen.
#10 Pick - Austin Rivers, SG
The most scrutinized pick of our draft. Sure there are reasons to doubt his game. Understandable. But my question is, who else would it have been? Our best player plays the same position. Aminu is our only SF. Jason Smith is our only C. I get it. But at that pick, he was the best player available. Lillard, Drummond, even Ross were already off the board. Our next choices were Lamb or Sullinger. Both had questions about their game. Zeller or Henson? I believe they have reached their potential. There is nothing special about those guys. Look at the NBA finals. In order to be elite, you need several scoring options who can create. We currently have one. If I had the choice, I would have traded for more picks, but that may not have even been an option. So truth is, we are rebuilding and we decided to take best player available. I'm ok with that.
#46 Pick - Darius Miller, SF
Not really sure why there is so much negative feedback on this pick. We had many quality discussions on this board about what to do with our 2nd round pick. But guess what, those players were not available. Everybody's favorite, including myself, Jae Crowder, went 12 spots earlier! He was very coveted and truth be told we were not in position to get him. Quincy Miller, Will Barton, Doron Lamb, Kim English... All gone. My only pick left was Scott Machado. I'm a big fan of his. But we apparently don't see the need for a PG, having 2 on the roster and Rivers who could fill in, in a pinch. And as it turns out, Machado wasn't even drafted, so we still have the opportunity to grab him. Honestly, at a middle 2nd round pick, there shouldn't be extremely high expectations. If you thought we could grab our next superstar, it's well wishing. Miller is a quality player, good attitude, winner, versatile, and adds depth to a needed position. With Aminu and Miller at the 3, should we still be searching for a starter? Yes, possibly, but in the 2nd round at least we added some depth.
Our Depth chart today:
Jack / Vasquez
Gordon / Rivers
Aminu / Henry / Miller
Davis / Ayon
I have concerns about the Center position. But remember we have cap space to add another frontcourt player. If the price is right, I think our best option is bringing back Chris Kaman. Javale Mcgee is a FA, so again if the price is right it may be worth a look. Typically, Monty used a 4 man rotation with the bigs. So while I would like to resing Carl Landry and Kaman, I think we only need one more big to fill a rotation, and that should be our starting center.
The backcourt is a little more sticky. Monty usually ran a 5 man rotation for the PG, SG, SF positions. Assuming we sign all draft picks, we currently have 7 players there. Doesn't seem like much of an issue, but with a young team these guys need time on the court to develop. I'm a big fan of Aminu, and I would like to see him reach his potential. But right now, I don't see a starting quality SF on our team. I'm happy with our current PG rotation. Having 7 guys in the backcourt makes it difficult to bring in another FA. So trade is an option in order to fill out the starting rotation. Or we could sign a guy like Gerald Green, and trade a couple pieces for a Center.
A final thought regarding our picks. As I have discussed before, I believe player development is directly correlated to environment. I have seen good players go to bad situations and never reach potential. I have seen average players go to good situations and play far beyond their perceived potential. Rivers knows our management. He WANTS to be a Hornet. The more comfortable and happy he is, the better his game can become. Also, bringing in 2 former college teammates may enable them both to develop quicker and higher.
Do not worry Hornets fans. There may still be moves to be made regarding our roster. We all have faith in our coach and GM. The Hive will be rocking next year, and there will be some exciting players to come out and watch. I, for one, am definitely looking forward to our season!