David Stern's last dance at the podium. One tear.
The draft is upon us, so inescapable as it is. Every year we promise ourselves we won't come back to this place. Every year we end up back here anyway. What sad little duckings we are, running from the cat of excitement dressed as the shark of expectations riding the roomba of draft season.
And you thought I'd never be able to explain that one. HA
Fortunately, this year's return to Never-drafter-land has yielded us something quite positive: not one, not two, not three, but four exceptional draft models we can use to procrastinate from leading what I imagine would otherwise be very productive lives.
- The classic Hoopus Score
- Madison Dan's Standard Deviation
- vjl's Expected Wins
- vjl's Star or Bust
Trademark 'em boys. We'll all be millionaires by Friday morning.
To get one single list we can then all argue about whether we agree on, let's put all three side-by-side and average them out. If Steve Jobs has taught the world nothing else, it's that simple is best (or something)
The top 15 prospects from all three lists (we'll do the lottery). Invert their draft number, then add it up.
|score||Hoopus||MDSD||Expected Wins||* II ( . )( . )|
|1||Nerlens Noel||Mike Muscala||Nerlens Noel||Trey Burke|
|2||Victor Oladipo||Nerlens Noel||Cody Zeller||Nerlens Noel|
|3||Mike Muscala||Otto Porter||Otto Porter||Otto Porter|
|4||Kelly Olynyk||Kelly Olynyk||CJ McCollum||Victor Oladipo|
|5||CJ McCollum||Victor Oladipo||Trey Burke||CJ McCollum|
|6||Nate Wolters||Zeke Marshall||Victor Oladipo||Cody Zeller|
|7||Cody Zeller||Gorgui Dieng||Nate Wolters||Kentavious Caldwell-Pope|
|8||Elias Harris||DJ Stephens||Michael Carter-Williams||Kelly Olynyk|
|9||Jamaal Franklin||Jeff Withey||Kentavious Caldwell-Pope||Nate Wolters|
|10||Trey Burke||Jack Cooley||Steven Adams||Michael Carter-Williams|
|11||Otto Porter||Elias Harris||Mike Muscala||Shane Larkin|
|12||Kentavious Caldwell-Pope||Brandon Davies||Ben McLemore||Ben McLemore|
|13||Anthony Bennett||Trevor Mbakwe||Kelly Olynyk||Mike Muscala|
|14||Ben McLemore||Arsalan Kazemi||Anthony Bennett||Anthony Bennett|
|15||Steven Adams||Richard Howell||Andre Roberson||Taylor Smith|
Nerlens Noel is the clear top pick. Otto Porter looks like he belongs at #3. The rest is more scattered than the remains of Alderaan.
No love for projected lottery picks Anthony Bennett or Alex Len. Or even for Ben McLemore, for that matter....not surprising, as he's not much of a 'do-stuff' guy. It also doesn't take team needs into account, and I'd expect a Euro guy (probably Karasev) to get into the 10-15 range.
But assuming no one actually takes Mike Muscala in the lottery (nothing wrong with the numbers, just not how draft politics work), then we're projected to pick Kentavious Caldwell-Pope. Which is what DraftExpress says, what DraftNet says, what ESPN says (well, figuring we won't take another point guard who can't shoot...) what I strongly believe will be Flip's pick if we stay at 9, and what all of us pretty much want anyways.
Document this moment, folks. Us and the front office and ESPN all agree on a draft pick.
The good news on the Kentavious front is the actual draft will likely have Len, McLemore and Bennett in the top 8, which will all but guarantee KCP will be there at #9.
I'm 99.999999% certain that Flip Saunders has Victor Oladipo at the top of his board, and (as you've all seen at this point) is determined to get him. I think the next 4 on the list are Noel, McLemore, Porter and Len. Not sure about the order of that. Saunders was asked in a workout interview if anyone in the draft could play right away, and he responded with 'no one healthy, anyway', which could have been a reference to either Noel or Len.
Personally I say get into the top 4. Even if you can't grab Oladipo, you'll still get Noel, McLemore or Porter, which will still be worth it in my estimation (yeah yeah, the models don't love Ben, but he can absolutely shoot, so...) But at any rate, it's just nice to be heading into a draft without the dreaded certainty that we'll find a way to screw it all up, no?