Aloha and welcome to the chat. The NBA Draft is just 9 days away. We released our Mock Draft 8.0 today and have daily updates coming for the next 10 days. I'll be taking NBA Draft questions the whole hour ... so let's roll ...
Expecting any big trades on draft night?
Lots of trade talk being reported, but nothing serious yet. I think the Bobcats at No. 2, the Kings at No. 5, the Blazers at 6 & 11, the Raptors at 8, the Hornets at 10 are all in play. Most of those teams are looking for either multiple assets (like the Bobcats) or a young veteran to help speed up the rebuilding process ...
If the same red flag(s) that came out for Sullinger had come out for Anthony Davis, what kind of effect would it have had on his draft stock?
It would've been the only thing that could knock him off the No. 1 perch. Luckily, no red flags for Davis. He will be the No. 1 pick on June 28. 100 percent.
Outside of Anthony Davis who do you think are potential stars in this years draft? I really like Jeremy lamb, that kid can flat out score the ball. Also like rivers, pj3, and maybe even Thomas Robinson if he doesn't fall into that mess of a team in Charlotte.
Most GMs feel like, if he stays healthy, Davis is a for sure All-Star. I don't think they feel the same way about anyone else. However, potential stars? Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Bradley Beal, Andre Drummond, Dion Waiters are the names that most often get thrown around ...
How much influence, if any, will new Bobcats coach Mike Dunlap have on the No. 2 pick. The team worked out MKG and Beal on Monday; will have Thomas Robinson in on Friday.
Doubt he'll have any impact. I think this coaching process shows that, once again, MJ does whatever MJ feels like doing. Robinson, MKG and Harrison Barnes appear to be the three names this has been narrowed to.
Big Wizards fan. The three names I've seen associated with them most often are Beal, MKG, and Barnes. Who do you see as the best fit? I think Barnes/Beal could score often next to Wall, but couldn't Nick Young do that? Thinking MKG fits best...
All three are fits. Beal and Barnes give them a shooter -- something the desperately need. MKG gives them toughness, leadership and someone who can really run the floor with Wall. They need that too. I hear MKG has the slight lead there, but it's a very close call for the Wizards. All three guys are big upgrades for them.
how close do you think the race between Beal and Barnes is in the Cavs' war room? passing on Beal for Barnes is one of my nightmare scenarios for my Cavs...
I think you have to put MKG and Andre Drummond in that mix as well for Cleveland ... though it appears that Beal and Barnes are the two front runners right now. I think Beal will be the guy if he's on the board. His team is acting pretty confident that he won't get past 4.
What are reasonable expectations for fans of teams picking in the lottery? Solid role players? It seems like asking to much to get franchise changing players
It's a great question ... I think most fans have unrealistic expectations about what they should be getting for where they are drafting. Top 5 should be somewhere between an All-Star and very good starter. 5-10 is a starter. 10-15 starter to rotation player. Everything after that feels good if they contribute off the bench. There will be a small handful of exceptions every year, but in a typical draft ... that's what you're getting.
Where does Jared Sullinger fall to
No idea yet. Lots of concern from team doctors based on the physical. But every team's medical staff looks at these things differently. And different GMs have different risk tolerances. Sullinger's camp is adamant that this isn't a serious issue. But I've spoken with around a dozen GMs who believe it MIGHT be based on what their docs are telling them. My guess is he slides out of the Top 10 ... but how far? Depends on how comfortable team doctors get with what Sullinger's personal physician and agent is saying. I've seen this go both ways. Sometimes red flags don't have much of an impact at all. Sometimes they have a devastating impact. More often, with top players however, it's the latter. DeJuan Blair is the most recent example. But this happened to Danny Granger too a few years ago. He slipped from a top 5 pick into the late teens.
What about this trade scenario, Tyreke Evans and the #5 pick to Charlotte for Gerald Henderson and the #2 pick? Kings then take MKG. Thoughts??
Interesting. I think that's the sort of deal Charlotte is looking for. They still want a high pick, plus the want to upgrade their talent. Just not sure that's what the Kings are looking for. I'm told they're after a young veteran. Team needs leadership and wants to start winning now ... not more young players.
Does Barnes really have a chance to get picked #2?
He does. He's in the mix at 2, 3, 4 and 5. Teams want to like him and there's a lot there to like. I think the great athletic combine numbers gave teams the excuse to go ahead and take him in the Top 5. I think his range is 2-7. But I'm thinking it's more likely he goes 2-5.
Best case scenario for blazers: Drummond at six and lillard at 11? If that where to happen, who do they go for in free agency?
Yes. That's probably the best case scenario. Drummond is a risk, but at No. 6 he might be worth it. However, I don't think Lillard is on the board at 11. But if he's not someone between Dion Waiters, Jeremy Lamb or Austin Rivers will be.
Do you think the Blazers will trade up, trade out, or use their picks?
Your latest has the Warriors taking Waiters. I would love that picked and so would the Hollinger rater. Any chance they actually take him with Thompson already there?
Warriors are in a tricky spot. I think there is a consensus six guys. Davis goes 1. Then MKG, Beal, Robinson, Barnes and Drummond is some order. That leaves the Warriors stuck at the top of the third tier of draft prospects. They want a small forward, but there isn't a great option at 7. They've flirted with PJ3 and Terrence Jones as SFs, but I think they've realized it's a stretch for both players. I think there are two players left on the board who you can argue could be Tier 2 players: Waiters and Damian Lillard. Of the two, Waiters makes the most sense as a replacement for Monta Ellis. They have very similar games. As for Thompson, they either use Waiters as a third guard or perhaps Thompson can take some minutes at the 3.
Any idea who is at the top of the Pistons wish list? They tried to trade up for Cousins a few yrs back before Monroe somehow fell to them. Is there one guy in particular they want this year?
Yes. Anthony Davis. After that, probably Thomas Robinson or Andre Drummond. There's a slim chance Drummond could be there, but it's unlikely. The Pistons do need a center or a super athletic power forward. They have a huge workout on Monday in Detroit with Jared Sullinger, Tyler Zeller, Meyers Leonard, John Henson, Terrence Jones and Perry Jones. I know the Pistons are having trouble getting separation in that group (as are a lot of teams). The workout could be key to which guy they end up drafting.
Can you comment (confirm/deny) on an alleged promise the Pistons made to Arnett Moultrie at No. 9?
They like him. He's been in for a workout and could very well be the pick if no one blows them away next Monday. But a promise? I don't think so ...
If the Hornets are looking to trade Pick 10 for a young veteran, who are some of the potential targets?
Darren Collison, Eric Bledsoe, Evan Turner I've heard a lot. Ditto for Paul Millsap of the Jazz.
By the way, I'm told the Blazers are looking at the same group of players at 11 if they decide to trade the pick.
Perry Jones could really fall to the Magic? That's a coup right?
Maybe. His decision to market himself as a 3 seems to have scared a lot of teams off. He's struggled shooting the basketball in workouts and just hasn't really looked the part. However, it's clear he doesn't want to be a four and shies away from the physicality of the position. So what is he? Teams are really struggling with that. He could go a lot higher than 19, but my general feel from teams is that he's really slid.
Is there any chance the suns could draft A. Rivers to start years without Nash?
Yes. Though Rivers is in play with the Raptors at 8 and the Hornets at 10 I'm told. We actually have Rivers going No. 10 to the Hornets in Mock 8.0 His range is really 8-18.
I have heard rumors of the Bucks moving up to #2. Any truth to that?
I'm told there haven't been any discussions between the Bucks and Bobcats. But it doesn't mean that the Bucks aren't trying to move up. They, like everyone, would really like to add another star to their roster. But at what cost? If the Bobcats would be willing to do Ellis and 12 for 2? I might consider that if I was Milwaukee.
Do you see Suns picking Sullinger sine they have pretty good atheltic trainers.
A definite possibility. The Suns do have a lot of confidence that they can keep guys healthy. They have a terrific staff there. He's not a need, but he might be great value at that pick.
More likely to entice Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak for Pau Gasol: Rockets sending Scola + Lowry or Scola 14 and 16 picks in this year's draft?
Might be the latter. It's time for the Lakers to add some young blood to the team and I think Rockets would give that up to land Gasol.
Any update on the Sixers? Will we trade Iggy to either move up in the draft or to get a top 10 pick outright? Any specific player they would be targeting if they moved up?
Seems like Iguodala's been on the block for a while. Raptors, Warriors, Kings seem like the potential destinations in the Top 10. Sixers need an athletic four or five. Just not sure what they get at 8 will be better than what they can get at 15. However, I could see them going after Dion Waiters and moving Turner to the 3.
If the mavs are feeling fairly confident they'll be able to sign D Will in free agency, how will that impact their draft? Do you think they still look to take Kendall Marshall?
Sadly, in the NBA, the draft happens before free agency. Wish the NBA would change that and move the draft to mid August, have summer league in September leading up to camp in October. Would make a lot more sense for everyone. With that said, I'm not sure how confident the Mavs are. They have a good shot, but Brooklyn is still the odds on favorite. Either way, they could use more than one point guard and Marshall is a good value here I think.
Best case scenario for my beloved timberwolves at 18?
One of the shooting guards -- either Terrence Ross, Austin Rivers or Jeremy Lamb. Will Barton might be another guy. I hear he's done really well in workouts and his stock may be rising higher than what I've indicated in my mock. If the guards aren't there, Fab Melo is another option.
Where does Draymond Green go?
Between 16-28. That's a wide range, but Green has been getting some serious buzz of late. I could see a team like the Rockets taking him. They are big believers in advanced stats and virtually all of them point to Green as being one of the Top 10 players in the draft. Don't think he gets past the Heat.
Gotta run everyone. Mock 8.0 is today. Also this week is my annual Draft Tiers column and something on the Top No. 1 pick over the past two decades. We'll chat again next week ...