NBA writers were a busy bunch this week. Games 5, 6, and 7 of the Finals gave them plenty of material on their own. Add to that the NBA Draft is this coming Thursday and the NBA is figuratively owning the end of June until it cedes the spotlight to football after free agency dies down. Until roughly February. It is no wonder the NFL is moving their draft into May. Soon it appears football season will be year round despite having one of the shortest actual seasons among the professional leagues.
NBA mock drafters have undoubtedly had a ball with this particular draft. The oncoming CBA restrictions, a generally unspectacular class, foreign players (Dario Saric) and college standouts (Marcus Smart) alike backing out of the draft despite expectations of being selected in the top 10. Consensus has fractured as we have inched closer to June 27th. For my first mock draft compliation, click here, to compare it to the most recent information. Unfortunately Jonathan Tjarks has taken a different approach to mock drafting since the lottery; posting best-case, worst-case and a variety of other mock drafts through a variety of methods. I have been unable to find an updated Mock Draft for Jeff Goodman from CBS.
|Cleveland Cavaliers||Orlando Magic||Washington Wizards||Charlotte Bobcats||Phoenix Suns||New Orleans Pelicans|
|Draft Express (6/19)||Nerlens Noel||Ben McLemore||Otto Porter||Alex Len||Victor Oladipo||Trey Burke|
|Matt Moore - CBS (6/19)||Otto Porter||Ben McLemore||Nerlens Noel||Anthony Bennett||Victor Oladipo||Trey Burke|
|Chris Mannix - SI (6/19)||Nerlens Noel||Ben McLemore||Otto Porter||Alex Len||Anthony Bennett||Victor Oladipo|
|Steve Kyler - Hoopsworld (6/19)||Nerlens Noel||Ben McLemore||Alex Len||Anthony Bennett||Victor Oladipo||Trey Burke|
|WalterFootball.com (6/21)||Otto Porter||Nerlens Noel||Anthony Bennett||Ben McLemore||Victor Oladipo||Alex Len|
|NBADraft.net (6/19)||Alex Len||Ben McLemore||Otto Porter||Anthony Bennett||Nerlens Noel||Trey Burke|
|NBA.com (6/20)||Nerlens Noel||Ben McLemore||Otto Porter||Alex Len||Anthony Bennett||Victor Oladipo|
|Chad Ford - ESPN (6/18)||Nerlens Noel||Victor Oladipo||Otto Porter||Anthony Bennett||Ben McLemore||Alex Len|
The most encouraging development from my perspective is that every mock draft has Trey Burke available for the Pelicans at #6. There is a majority throughout this grouping. Noel (5/8), McLemore (6/8), Porter (5/8), Bennett (4/8), Oladipo (4/8), Burke (4/8). However, no one mock draft comes up with this specific order. Alex Len appears to be the most volatile player, landing anywhere from first overall to ninth in Matt Moore's mock.
The most appealing mock draft to me is Steve Kyler's. Not only is Burke available, he also has Otto Porter failing through to seventh overall. Personally this is my best case scenario. Burke and Porter are both "high floor" players in my mind, at worst effective role players on a contending team. I disagree with Kyler's selection as I believe Demps and Coach Williams would jump at the chance to select Otto Porter. It would be a rare case where need and best player available would intersect. In his scenario the biggest potential busts are already cleared; Alex Len to Washington and Anthony Bennett to Charlotte. Choosing from Burke or Porter in my mind is a no-lose situation.