Chat with Jay Bilas
Welcome to SportsNation! On Tuesday, ESPN college basketball analyst Jay Bilas will stop by to chat the NBA draft, which takes place Thursday (7 p.m. ET, ESPN).
Bilas provides expert color commentary from courtside on college basketball games, and serves as a studio analyst and as the co-host of ESPN's popular studio shows College Gameday and College Gamenight. He also writes for ESPN.com, and contributes numerous reports for SportsCenter. Since 2003, Bilas has provided in-depth player scouting and analysis for ESPN's coverage of the NBA Draft.
Send your questions now and join Bilas Tuesday at 3 p.m. ET!
Jay Bilas (2:50 PM)
Welcome to the Fastest Chat in Basketball! I do my own typing, and I make no spelling or syntax errors. Fire away with your questions, and I will do my very best to avoid them altogether. This will not last as long as the Isner-Mahut match, I promise. Ask away!
Really enjoy your work, Jay. I learn something each game you do. Just a question: What're your thoughts on Pitt's 2011-12 team? Having Ashton Gibbs return for his senior year is big, but what do you know of the redshirts/freshmen like Jonathan Moore and Cameron Wright who might be ready to contribute? And your take on Khem Birch? Thanks!
Jay Bilas (2:52 PM)
Pitt will be good again. When are the Panthers not competitive for the Big East title? Gibbs staying was big, and you will like Khem Birch. He can run, rebound and block shots. He will get better and better. Pitt will be, well, Pitt. NCAA Tournament, 25 or more wins, ho hum stuff like that.
Is this draft considered weak because there are no really explosive athletes like years past?
Jay Bilas (2:53 PM)
Not that, it is just that there is no truly great, can't miss player or players in this year's Draft. But, there are a lot of good players. Good depth of talent through the second round, with a lot of players that can make a team. But, not many sure-fire all stars or starters.
Peter (United Kingdom)
Hey Jay, the talk is always about Biyombo playing the 5, but wouldn't he also be suitable at the 4? If so wouldn't he be a good fit for the Pacers if he falls that far?
Jay Bilas (2:55 PM)
I don't project him as a 4 in the NBA. At the 4, he would have to step out and guard more often, and he is not suited for that. Plus, he cannot score, except on drop offs and offensive put backs. Biyombo could be like Ben Wallace, but he has to be able to guard in the post and control the lane, as well as compete on the glass. That's his value.
Tony (Richmond, CA)
JB, where does Trey Tompkins from Georgia end up being selected?
Jay Bilas (2:56 PM)
He could go late in the First Round, but he is more likely to go in the Second Round. Trey is talented, and can score with his back to the basket and from the high post, but he is not well conditioned right now, and he needs to be a better rebounder and defender. He is good, but he should be better.
Mandy Demetsky (Redondo Beach, CA.)
Jay, Avid female fan. Why does everyone talk about what Jimmer can't do-instead of projecting what he can do? He will be fine. Agree?
Jay Bilas (2:58 PM)
I'm an avid fan of females, too. And, I am from Rolling Hills, right down the road from Redondo. Used to play HS games at Redondo Union HS when our gym was flooded in 1979. Jimmer can score, and I agree, he will be fine. But, he doesn't defend, and he has to do that. He HAS TO. If he does, he will have a really good career.
Jay, bit of a hypothetical but if you were in charge of the Cavs draft and were guaranteed these picks would be available at picks 1 and 4 which way would you go? IRving #1 and Kanter/Veasley/whomever at 4 or Williams #1 and Knight #4? Thanks
Jay Bilas (3:00 PM)
If I were in Cleveland, I would take Irving at No. 1 and take Kanter at No. 4. Both are young and the best prospects at their positions. But, Chris Grant is really good and really smart. He doesn't need any suggestions from talking heads.
Jeremy (Chicago, IL)
Any underrated U.S big men in the draft?
Jay Bilas (3:03 PM)
Yes. Tristan Thompson is going to be really good, but he needs to get better on the offensive end. He is undersized, but long armed and he can really run the floor. Also, watch for Justin Harper of Richmond ( a stretch 4 - which means a forward that can shoot it) and Jon Leuer of Wisconsin. Leuer can shoot it, and he is a far better athlete than he gets credit for.
Cheesehead Sports Nut (Chicago, IL)
It seems like the NBA is in worse financial shape than the NFL. Despite that, do you think the current NFL lockout is giving the NBA a model for how to approach the impending labor strife in the NBA?
Jay Bilas (3:05 PM)
I know that the NBA watches everything that is going on over with the NFL lockout, but David Stern has different problems than Roger Goodell. The revenue model is broken in the NBA. I think that there will be a work stoppage in basketball, and it could last into the New Year. I hope I am incorrect on that.
Greg (North Carolina)
All I've heard the last couple seasons is that there hasn't been a "great" team. Is that about to end this year with (unfortunately) North Carolina?
Jay Bilas (3:07 PM)
Yes. North Carolina will be great. And, you have heard the "no great team" talk from me. And, I believe I was correct. First time for everything!
What is the best case senerio for the Raptors? Knight, Walker, Leonard, others?
Jay Bilas (3:09 PM)
The Raptors will get a good player. I tend to think that they will grab Walker, Vesely or Valanciunas. Jonas Valanciunas is considered to be a really good prospect, long term. I would take Walker.
Heels4ever (Carolina Country)
UNC is very Deep. How does Roy keep everyone happy and do you think we will lose Players to transfers due to playing time?
Jay Bilas (3:10 PM)
The players have to keep Roy Williams happy, not the other way around. He has had deep teams before. With Carolina's pace of play, each guy can be more productive in fewer minutes if they play all out, all the time they are in there. It should be no problem. UNC will play fast again next year.
Hey Jay, What type of player do you see Derrick Favors becoming?
Jay Bilas (3:11 PM)
He could be a junior, or lesser, version of Dwight Howard. But, he needs to play harder and with more focus and passion. Favors is very good, but he is not a finished product yet. I saw him hang 44 points and 22 rebounds on Terrelle Pryor in HS. Great performance.
Jimmer won all of the NCAA awards. Kemba won the national championship. Who had the better season?
Jay Bilas (3:12 PM)
Both were terrific. I would rather have Kemba's hardware, myself.
If your drafting in the late lottery to early twenties, which Wing player out of the bunch is your favorite? Mine is Marshon Brooks out of Providence.
Jay Bilas (3:13 PM)
Good call. I think he may be gone, but if Jordan Hamilton is there, I would grab him. I also really like Charles Jenkins from Hofstra. He is more of a shooting guard, though.
Seems as if Derrick Williams has been subject to a little bit of the East Coast Bias. If this kid played on the East Coast scouts and the country would know a little bit more about him. The kid went off on the Morris twins in a losing effort to Kansas early in the year (something like 27 and 13). Seems as if when this kid sets his mind to it, and having a longer vertical then Blake Griffin, the Cavs should take him at #1 even if they settle for Kemba Walker at 4. This kid is going to be a Tier 1 player and people will see that down the road. Your thoughts?
Jay Bilas (3:14 PM)
East Coast Bias? Not on this one. He is the consensus No. 2 pick! I have watched him since his very first college game, and he is really talented and good. I think he will be a very good NBA player.
Whose next years #1 overall pick?
Jay Bilas (3:16 PM)
Kentucky's Anthony Davis would be the overall No. 1 pick, if he comes out.
Sam Kahn (Cleveland)
Chances Chris Grant and the Cavs take Derrick Williams at 1?
Jay Bilas (3:17 PM)
I think that the chances are slim. My guess is that the basketball people in Cleveland are set on Kyrie Irving. I just don't believe that Cleveland will pass up on a point guard like Irving.
Hey, Sam Kahn (Cleveland)...are you Sam Kahn from Chicago? Went to camp in Wisconsin?
Jay Bilas (3:19 PM)
Guys, this ain't e-Harmony. This is a serious basketball chat. Wait, Gerardo, is that you? Did you go to band camp in the 70's?
What are the chances that jimmer falls to 15 with the pacers?
Jay Bilas (3:20 PM)
There is a chance, yes. He could be gone earlier, but there is absolutely a chance. I like Jimmer's offensive game. But, he needs to defend harder.
Who do you see as the five best prospects in order for this year?
Jay Bilas (3:22 PM)
Irving, Williams, Kanter, Walker and Knight.
I know this draft lacks for star power, but it seems as though it has a lot more "NBA ready" players than usual. Do you agree with this?
Jay Bilas (3:23 PM)
Fair point. I think there are more good players in the Draft than in past years. Good depth of good players and good talent. Just not a lot of great. But, somebody will come out of nowhere and make an impact.
Zack Bauer (Shrewsbury, MA)
Jay: Some people have dismissed the Veteran's Day aircraft carrier game as a silly stunt, while others have gone further and decried it as disgusting and even disrespectful to the military to have it played on the same ship that dumped Bin Laden's body into the ocean. I personally think it's a great idea and people need to lighten up. What are your thoughts, sir?
Jay Bilas (3:25 PM)
I agree with you. The game is to honor our brave young men and women in uniform. I went to the Middle East with Tom Izzo for Operation Hardwood, twice, and there is nobody that respects the military more than Tom. I know Roy Williams feels the same way. The carrier game will be a celebration of the game, and of the finest team and fighting force in the world...the United States Armed Forces.
Arman (Los Angeles)
Is it possible for Klay Thompson go Number 3 to the Jazz? Utah seems they can really use a scorer.
Jay Bilas (3:26 PM)
I doubt it. I think Klay will go in the 10-15 range. One of the best shooters in this Draft. Terrific prospect that will continue to mature and get better.
Have you seen these foreign guys play?
Jay Bilas (3:28 PM)
Most of them, but not all. The guys to rely upon for the best info on foreign players are Chad Ford, Jonathon Givony of DraftExpress and Fran Fraschilla. One guy that I always rely upon is Rich Shuebrooks. He sees them all, all the time. Great basketball mind.
what's your favorite collegiate atmosphere for a big time game experience?
Jay Bilas (3:29 PM)
I played at Duke, so Cameron Indoor Stadium is my favorite. But, taking where I played out of it, Phog Allen Field House at Kansas is the best, by far. Amazing place.
My friends have a drinking game for the draft based on how often you say these buzz words: length, value, and long.
Jay Bilas (3:30 PM)
There are going to be a lot of drunk guys on Thursday. Word to the wise....don't include "wingspan" in there, or you will be in the Emergency Room.
Charles (San Jose)
Back in the day, how big a chair could you guard?
Jay Bilas (3:34 PM)
Depends. If it had wheels on it, not a single one, of any size.
Ryan (San Diego)
Jeremy Tyler, worth the risk late in the first round in your mind?
Jay Bilas (3:35 PM)
Sure. He is really talented, but he has totally wasted a great opportunity. Players develop differently, but it is really disappointing to see him leave high school after his junior year. His parents or guardians didn't do him any favors. I will be rooting for the young man. I hope he does well.
Jay Bilas (3:36 PM)
Thanks for joining me! Have a great day!