Update: Major draft implications with the recent Washington/Minnesota deal. Key players include Randy Foye, Mike Miller, and the 5th pick in this year's draft. READ HERE.
Here's Pay's most recent 2-round mock.
As well as a few of his thoughts...
* Pick 2 is most intriguing. Why would Thabeet sit out during a workout with Memphis? Would you take a player if he sat out? I'd take Rubio and trade him to whoever wants him.
My Comment: I couldn't agree more. Thabeet worries me a TON. More on that later...
* Totally feel like the Kings are going with Tyreke Evans.
My Comment: Evans is my man crush, sans the obvious (Maynor & Flynn), this year.
* Spurs scalped the Bucks and got RJ for declining talent. Even if they get 60 games out of him, that's still a huge coup. Each of the Spurs' big four will miss at least 10 games at one point next year.
My Comment: The injury comment could not be more dead on, including Jefferson. LA's Bill Plaschke (of Around the Horn "fame"), thinks this is as close to a Pau Gasol-deal as the Spurs could've made. They may be #2 in the West "Power Rankings". More on that later...
* T-Will is going in the teens
My Comment: I am seriously doubting if Earl Clark or Terrence Williams will be NBA contributors. Jay Bilas disagrees strongly. Good.
* NBADraft.net really hates Jrue Holiday
My Comment: VCU hates the guy too. He saved his best game for the first round of the NCAA Tournament last season.
* Maynor won't be a lottery pick unfortunately.
My Comment: A few weeks back, the trend had Maynor slipping to the late teens or even early 20s. The interesting threesome I see is Maynor, Lawson, and Teague. I think we know why Flynn came out, dude could go as high as 4 to Sac Town. Although I've seen him as low as 14 (NBADraft.net). I'm still ecstatic for Maynor and VCU and HOPE that 17 is where he lands, so I can see him play once in a while. I think he'd be a PERFECT fit for a pick-and-roll offense. Jay Bilas agrees. Uh oh.
As for today's weather report...
1) Danny Ainge knows the Celtics are getting old and standing pat for a championship run in 2010 may be too costly for the C's future, specifically with the summer of 2010 ("Free Agency Summer") approaching. Curiously though, perhaps the top young talent on the team (point guard Rajon "Triple Double" Rondo), was linked by Yahoo! Sports with a blockbuster deal with the Detroit Pistons.
In the "supposed" proposed deal, Detroit would've sent Rip Hamilton, Tayshaun Prince, and Rodney "50 Cent" Stuckey to Boston for Ray "He Got Game" Allen and Rajon Rondo. I might need to check out a few contracts; however, I'm shocked Rondo was paired in any deal, especially since Allen's expiring-next-season $20-million contract is easy to sell on its own. I knew immediately Stuckey would be involved, who's an intriguing point guard talent himself, although no Rondo (yet). Even more surprising, in the end, was Detroit potentially passing on the move, with Joe Dumars making mistake after mistake in recent trades and free agent signings (aka Kwame and AI).
2) San Antonio pulls the trigger, sending a trio of "role players" (Kurt Thomas, Fabricio Oberto, and Bruce "Trips" Bowen) for swingman Richard Jefferson. I hate to quote other articles, but this clearly sums up the thoughts of Milwaukee Bucks basketball as of late:
This is what happens, general managers and fans alike, when you shoot for 45 wins, and nothing higher. This is what happens when you overvalue talent. Like, perhaps, Luke Ridnour's talent. This is what happens when you pin your hopes on Richard Jefferson as a second go-to guy, even when he should be a third or fourth, while being paid as a first option. It's a lopsided deal, talent-wise, even taking into consideration the way people tend to overrate Jefferson. But it's a necessary deal, in Milwaukee's eyes, as Jefferson is due over $29 million over the next two seasons, on a team with little upside and no real reason to pay a luxury like Jefferson to stick around.
This should allow the Bucks enough money to sign their lottery pick and potentially hang onto Ramon Sessions (do it!); however, they could go PG, bench Ridnour, and let Sessions bolt (mistake!).
What surprises me, for the better, is the Spurs making the move for Jefferson. A 3rd option, at best, who gets paid WAY TOO MUCH (shocker), Jefferson actually might fit in well with the Spurs...if he starts playing actual defense. The #2-spot in the West isn't exactly locked up, despite Denver's lift-oft post-Chauncey last season, and Tim Duncan will love having Jefferson - if healthy - ready to score; especially if Ginobli can stay healthy come playoff time. Duncan/Parker/Ginobli/Jefferson is a pretty solid four. The only concern is this doesn't allow the Spurs to be freed up next summer, although I didn't see them being able to add an elite superstar (Amare, Bosh, Wade) anyways.
Surprisingly, Caron "Clipse" Butler isn't part of this Washington Wizards' trade discussion.
3) ESPN.com's "trade rumors" (shocker, you don't have to pay for them) has the following "never-gonna-happen-in-a-million-years-trade-proposal". The question is: how dynamic might this be for all or some parties concerned? A LOT.
It would look like this: The Suns send Shaquille O'Neal to Cleveland and Amare Stoudemire to Washington. The Cavs send Ben Wallace and Sasha Pavlovic to Phoenix and Zydrunas Ilgauskas to Washington. The Wizards send the No. 5 pick, Etan Thomas, Mike James and JaVale McGee to Phoenix and Antawn Jamison to Cleveland. Call me crazy, but isn't this the ideal deal for all three teams?
This can't be Vinsanity, can it? Can it!?!?
4) David Lee, Vince Carter, and Luol Deng will have their names bounced quite a bit the next 48-72 hours. Guess who's getting moved? NONE OF THEM!!!
Stephen Curry can borrow this suit come draft night. No need for the lawyer, though.
5) A couple quick hits to end things...
-Tyreke Evans is going to be the best player, production-wise, out of this draft. I called it with Paul Pierce in 1998 and Danny Granger in 2005 (okay, CP3 and Deron Williams are better). Both Pierce and Granger slipped way too far, which Evans shouldn't, and ended up developing into dynamic NBA talents (check the numbers on Granger, folks). I'm calling it with Evans, too. Bring him to MSG for good!!!
-I'm nervous about Stephen Curry being a shooter on a team like Golden State (at #7). Very very nervous.
-(My boy) Eric Maynor turned down an invitation to MSG to stay at home with his family in Fayettville. Might waiting until 17 (Philly) be too long for one of the the top senior prospects in the draft?
-I'm always going to wonder how different Kentucky might've been next year with those recruits, Patterson, and Jodie Meeks. Wow.
-DeJuan Blair won't be an impact starter in the NBA or any professional league. That doesn't mean he can't be a valuable reserve...in 3-4 seasons.
-Hasheem Thabeet is a perfect #2 pick. He's as stiff as bigs come and doesn't have a basketball IQ I want anywhere near my starting 5 just yet.
When it comes to poor drafting, I know far too much pain.