True Hoops

True Hoops

Friday, June 24, 2011

Kid and Play

New beginnings.

What does it mean when the number 1 pick in the draft only played in a hand full of college games and the number 3 pick in the draft played in 0? Or that the two most talked about and accomplished players in college last year were picked number 9 and 10?

Ah yes, good old fashioned american devalued education.

How about Derrick Williams? Okay, he was the Pac 10 player of the year. But honestly, did anyone hear of this guy before the NCAA tournament? And I'm not trying to hate on this dude - I actually think he might be the best player in the draft.
Check out his skills:

What will his game be like in the NBA? The guy is 6'8", 240 ibs. He is LeBron? Is he Blake Griffin. Is he Michael Beasley? Oh wait, Minnesota already has one of the those.
So how is that going to work out?

Perhaps, they'll need their other top 5 pick to spread the Love. You know, one of the most heralded rookie points guards this year. Yeah, Ricky Rubio. So who do you think will be the best this year? Irving, Walker, Fredette, or Rubio? Out the 4, Rubio certainly has the least star power, and scoring ability. But we're talking true point guard here, and while I haven't really seen Irving play that much I DID see Rubio hold his own against the U.S. team in the gold medal game a few years ago. Yes, Irving may be the next Chris Paul, but Rubio was able to hold his own against Chris Paul, and Deron Williams, and Dwayne Wade, and......

I think Rubio is probably a 10 point and 10 assist a game guy - and maybe not much better for his career. I wouldn't be surprised if he is a 8 and 8 guy. I would actually compare his game to that of Jason Kidd, the 38 year old version. But that's not exactly a bad thing - look what it did for Dallas. Maybe on a great night, Rubio can be like LeBron James - the 2011 Finals version.

I would say Rubio and Walker seem like they are the most ready to lead a team.

I originally thought Kemba Walker would have a tough time translating his game into the NBA. But I feel better about his chances all the time. The NBA has changed. It's a point guard's game now. In fact, it may be a small quick point guard's game. Look at what Jose Barea was able to do throughout the playoffs. Therefore I think Kemba is going to be just fine. And why not? How do you think Kemba feels about being drafted by Jordan? Well then again...... Will this finally be the pick that Jordan gets right? I just hope that Kemba gets a LOT of playing time. Rookies need it to develop their game. The bobcats already have D.J. Augustin so it will be interesting to see how that plays out. Good thing Larry Brown isn't coaching there anymore, that dude gives rookies no burn.

And of all the talk of Walker and Jimmer this year, especially the comparisons, isn't it fitting they were picked one after the other? (9 and 10, respectively).

I like how people tried to play Jimmer by saying that he would be a mid-first round pick.
This guy is nice and I think will flourish in the NBA. Amongst other things, the NBA is a skill league. You always need shooters. And right now, before he has even played a game as a pro, is there a better shooter in the NBA? I think Fredette will be similar to Stephen Curry. Any chance he can be like Steve Nash? (who by the way may be a better shooter).
Of course you will hear that he can't play defense, and that will be his downfall. But honestly, does anybody in the NBA play defense? Or rather, does anybody on the Kings play defense? It will be interesting to see Jimmer play with Tyreke Evans and Demarcus Cousins.
It seems Evans is at his best with the ball. Does that mean Jimmer will play off the ball?

And if you want to talk about off the ball, I have heard from many people that the NBA is fixed.
Well, is pre-NBA fixed?
Check out this Bounce magazine cover from a while back:

Shot out to Bobbito Garcia.
Next we'll see a SLAM magazine cover of Irving saying he will win rookie of the year. Or better yet, that he will win the MVP. Imagine a number 1 overall pick and point guard having the audacity to say that.

So who wins rookie of the year? Tough call.
But right now I would go with Williams.
This may be sort of like last year with John Wall and Blake Griffin. Any other year Wall wins it, he had a very good rookie year. But Blake was Blake - even on a bad team. I think the same will happen with Irving and Williams.

I would love to talk about other draft picks, but in all honesty I have no clue about most of them. I hope Imam Shumpert can play. I suppose shooting guard is the other position that the Knicks need to fill. I feel kind of bad for Landry Fields though - I wonder if he played himself out of a starting gig in their first round series agains the Celtics. The scouting report on Shumpert is that he can score, both by getting to the basket and by shooting. The report also says that he is a very good defender. Two thoughts:
1) good defender in the D'Antoni system?
2) I hope he is a good defender because I'm not sure how much his offense will shine playing with A'mare and Carmelo.

Oh wait, I have heard of another draft pick: Brandon Knight, picked 8th by Detroit. 8th pick? Relatively subpar for a Calipari kid. Although he did go further in the NCAA tournament than Evans and Wall. But not Rose. On second thought, maybe Knight wins the rookie of the year. He does have to keep the Calipari recruiting system flowing.

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