2012 NBA Mock Draft Debut

1. Brooklyn Nets Andre Drummond PF St. Thomas More High School Connecticut The New Jersey Nets will be the Brooklyn Nets in 2012. Andre Drummond is the top recruit in the class of 2012.  Andre Drummond was supposed to graduate high school last year, but got held back a grade.  Drummond can enter the 2012 NBA Draft if he reclassifies and submits his paperwork for the 2012 NBA Draft. Andre Drummond could be the first player to jump from High School to the NBA since Dwight Howard due to this rare technicality.

Andre Drummond is the top recruit in the class of 2012 and has not committed to a college yet.  Hometown school Connecticut and Kentucky are the 2 front runners at this point to win his services should Drummond play a year in college.  Drummond will go #1 overall in 2013 if he does not reclassify and submit his paperwork for the 2012 NBA Draft.

If Andre Drummond does not declare in 2012 than Anthony Davis would likely be the clear cut #1 overall pick in 2012.  Anthony Davis enters his freshman year at Kentucky and was the #1 overall recruit in the class of 2011.

Pairing Andre Drummond or Anthony Davis up at power forward next to Brook Lopez would give the Nets 2 premium bigs which could boost the defensive presence of the Brooklyn Nets for the decade.

Drummond has the size of a 4 at power forward and the wingspan of a 5 at center.  Brook Lopez has the size and wingspan of a 5 at center so Drummond would focus on an easier role at the 4 excelling in his role.

2. Houston Rockets Harrison Barnes SF North Carolina Harrison Barnes was the #1 overall recruit coming out of high school in 2010.  Barnes started off cold, but got hot and reclaimed his draft stock as the season ended.

Houston traded draft picks to get Donatas Motiejunas who was 7 foot 215 pounds.  Now he is 7 foot 222 pounds and is guaranteed to be a bench guy at the 4 at power forward until he can bulk up and become a true 5.

The Rockets could take the best player available in Anthony Davis at #2 overall or they could draft by need getting Harrison Barnes at #2 overall.

Houston has their 2012 first round pick and the New York Knicks 2012 first round pick unless they pick in the top 5.

Houston may package a deal to get a lottery pick if neither of their 2 first round picks ends up being a lottery pick.

Houston has Luke Scola at center, Kevin Martin at shooting guard, Kyle Lowry at point guard, and  Motiejunas should be the 4 at power forward.  That leaves only one key need to address at small forward.  The only reason I had the Rockets picking this high is because most of these players on Houston were players that I never heard of up until now.  Now that I’ve done some research I found out that the Rockets have a pretty good depth chart only needing a 3 at small forward when you examine the points per game averages.

Andre Drummond is the 2012 #1 recruit who is draft eligible in 2012 due to a technicality, Anthony Davis the 2011 #1 overall recruit could also declare, and Harrison Barnes the 2010 #1 overall recruit returned for his sophomore year which makes this class really stand out because I’ve never seen an NBA draft that had #1 overall prospect from 3 consecutive graduation classes.

There is no doubt that the 2012 NBA Draft has more depth than the 2011 NBA Draft, but if Drummond, Davis, and Barnes all declare this NBA Draft will have so much talent at the top the 2012 NBA Draft that if you get a lottery pick your bound to get someone good. Only the 2003 and 1984 NBA Drafts look better when it comes to the depth at the top of the NBA Draft.  2003 was the draft with Lebron, Darko, Wade, Carmelo, and Bosh all going in the top 5. The 1984 NBA Draft had Hakeem Olajuwon, Sam Bowie, Michael Jordan, Sam Perkins, and Charles Barkley all go in the top 5.

No NBA Draft Class can be compared to the legendary NBA draft class of  1984 with Air Jordan, Hakeem, and Sir Charles.  The 2012 NBA Draft may be the best draft I’ve seen in terms of potential NBA talent since the 2003 NBA Draft.  Even then, the 2012 NBA Draft is not in the same league as the 2003 NBA Draft.

3. Detroit Pistons Anthony Davis PF Kentucky The Pistons failed to find a big who could compliment Greg Monroe.  Detroit will take Kentucky power forward Anthony Davis if there picking here at #3 with Anthony Davis available.

Right now Anthony Davis is being listed as the top prospect in the Recruiting Class of 2011.  Anthony Davis was a 6 foot 2 comob guard entering his junior year and the next thing you know he’s 6 foot 10 and emerges as the #1 recruit in the country the following year.  Davis managed to impress College coaches while applying the guard skills of his game to the power forward position.

Its really hard to tell if Anthony Davis has the size.  Some people have him listed as a 6 foot 10 240 pound prospect while others have Davis listed as a at 6 foot 10 200 pound prospect.  Size isn’t a con with Anthony Davis he grew from 6 foot 2 to 6 foot 10 which is really impressive.  Its just more of question of how much Anthony Davis weighs.

The weight between 240 and 200 pounds is a major difference for Anthony Davis at this point.  Its the one question that’s remained unanswered up until this point.  The reason the weight is so crucial is because if he is 200 pounds he is a 3 at small forward.  If Davis weighs 220 pounds he’s a combo forward who can play the 3 or the 4.  If Davis weighs 240 like some reports indicate than he is a pure 4 at power forward.

Regardless of how much Anthony Davis weighs he is likely to be a top 3 pick in the 2012 NBA Draft.  Pairing Anthony Davis up with Greg Monroe could give Detroit two bigs would establish a defensive presence with point guard Brandon Knight being a go to shooter.

4. Cleveland Cavaliers Austin Rivers SG Duke Austin Rivers is a shooting guard who will play for Duke.  Rivers is 6 foot 4 190 pounds which is why he will move to the 1 as a point guard unless he bulks up.  I think Rivers will bulk up and be around the 210 to 215 pound range by the time he is done with Duke.

Not only does Austin Rivers have a high basketball IQ he knows how to talk game off the court also.  In an interview with the Sporting News Austin Rivers stated he’s going to destroy Lebron James once he gets to the NBA.

When you say your going to destroy Lebron James in an NBA game that makes Cavs owner Dan Gilbert happy.  When you back up your talk on the court and win Dan Gilbert has a bigger smile on his face than Chuckles the Clown.

I’m going to continue to compare Dan Gilbert to Chuckles the Clown until the Cleveland Indians win a world series or until Gilbert builds a winning NBA team in Cleveland.  Every NBA fan except a Heat fan enjoyed watching James lose to the Mavericks in the NBA Finals.  I know Gilbert is mad that James bolted for Miami, but its time for Cleveland to rebuild a post Lebron team that can be a winner in Cleveland.

I’m not trying to sound rude, but Dan Gilbert needs to stop laughing at Lebron like Eric Cartman every time LeBron loses a big game.  I can’t stand the Heat and laughing at LeBron like Cartman will only motivate James to win a Championship over time.

Here is a statement to any people who think LeBron should be called King James.

“Until James wins 6 Championships he doesn’t deserve to be called King James period.  Until James wins a championship he doesn’t even deserve the label Prince James that ESPN personality Skip Bayless graciously gives James.  In fact LeBron’s new nickname should be “Jack” James because he is like the jack in a deck of cards.  He needs his king of Miami basketball Dwayne Wade who already has one championship from 2006 and the queen Chris Bosh to win a Championship.  Bosh would be the queen in a deck of cards because he cried after the loss in game 6 of the NBA Finals.  Real ballers don’t cry.  Kobe Bryant didn’t cry after losing to the Pistons in the 2004 NBA Finals.  The other reason why we should all call LeBron James “Jack” James is because he has not won jack when it comes to NBA Championships.”

I’m done with my rant on Dan Gilbert and LeBron James.  Now I’ll get back to mentioning what Austin Rivers can do for your NBA team if your the Cleveland Cavaliers.

It would be really cool if Kyrie Irving the 2011 #1 overall pick and Austin Rivers a Duke player who is the son of Doc Rivers were teammates in Cleveland for the next 2 decades.  I really believe Austin Rivers could end up having a better career than Kyrie Irving despite the fact that Irving went #1 overall.

Drafting Austin Rivers would allow the Cavaliers to become legit contenders after this year giving them a big 3 of their own with Kyrie Irving, Tristan Thompson, and Austin Rivers.  Irving will likely sit out this year, but should be a starter next season in 2012-2013.  Austin Rivers would also start for Cleveland as a rookie in 2012 if the Cavaliers selected him.

5. Toronto Raptors Michael Gilchrist SF Kentucky Michael Gilchrist is the best player available.  Toronto could use Gilchrist if they cannot obtain Harrison Barnes or Austin Rivers in 2012.

6. Indiana Pacers Jared Sullinger PF Ohio State Jared Sullinger is the best player available at this point.  Some people argue that Sullinger should be a top 5 pick in 2012.  The 2012 NBA Draft has too much top 5 talent at this point.  If Drummond does not declare in 2012 by reclassifying.  Sullinger is a borderline top 5 pick who could compete with Quincy Miller and Perry Jones for that #5 overall spot if Drummond does not declare in 2012.

7. Denver Nuggets Quincy Miller SF Baylor Denver will realize that it will be difficult to replace Carmelo at small forward.  If there picking this high and Quincy Miller is still available they have to take him.

8. Phoenix Suns Perry Jones PF Baylor Phoenix adds a power forward in Perry Jones by taking the best player available.

9. Sacramento Kings Terrence Jones PF Kentucky Terrence Jones is a combo forward who played small forward at the 3 and has the size of a power forward at the 4.  Jones will not see much playing time unless Kentucky goes with the 3 forwards 2 guards system rather than the 2 guards, 2 forwards, 1 center system that most NBA teams use.

1o. Milwaukee Bucks Bradley Beal SG Florida Milwaukee gets a shooting guard to compliment Brandon Jenkins.  Bradley Beal is worth taking with a late top 10 pick.

11. Washington Wizards Thomas Robinson PF Kansas Jan Vesely should move to power forward, but Washington could use some depth at power forward in case Vesely and Singleton both end up being small forwards.

12. Boston Celtics from Los Angeles Clippers via Oklahoma City Thunder Marquis Teague PG Kentucky Kentucky point guards usually get into the NBA.  Marquis Teague is the best player available and the Boston Celtics are getting amazing value with Teague at #12 by trading up with the Clippers and Thunder when giving up Kendrick Perkins.

13. Portland Trailblazers John Henson SF North Carolina Henson is 6 foot 10 210 pounds.  He shoots like a 4 at power forward and has the size of a 3 at small forward.  That’s a major concern if you ask me.  Henson could bulk up as the season progresses.  Portland needs depth at small forward so John Henson would make a lot of sense with the 13th pick.

14. Utah Jazz from Golden State Warriors via Brooklyn Nets Myck Cabongo PG Texas Utah discussed the option of taking Brandon Knight over Enes Kanter in the 2011 NBA Draft.  Utah gets Myck Cabongo as their point guard with this pick.

15. Atlanta Hawks Jeremy Lamb SG Connecticut Lamb should start out on the bench at the 2 and eventually work his way into a starting role.  Lamb is a good depth player for the Hawks.  With Kemba Walker gone Jeremy Lamb will have to step up for Connecticut.

16. Minnesota Timberwolves from Utah Jazz Will Barton SG Memphis Barton plays the 2 at shooting guard, but has the size of a 1 at point guard.  Minnesota needs depth at shooting guard so Will Barton should be the pick here.

If the Jazz miss the 2012 NBA Playoffs this pick is lottery protected.  If there is a lockout I’m not sure how the conditional picks would work.  I’m guessing they would carry over to the next year.

17. Houston Rockets from New York Knicks Tyler Zeller C North Carolina Houston takes another center for depth with this draft pick that the Rockets got from the New York Knicks.

18. New Orleans Hornets Tony Mitchell SF North Texas Tony Mitchell is the best available player that the Hornets can get for depth.

19. Memphis Grizzlies Alex Oriakhi PF Connecticut The Grizzlies can take the best player available.

20. Chicago Bulls from Charlotte Bobcats CJ Leslie SF North Carolina State The Bulls get CJ Leslie as a small forward for depth.  The Bulls get the Bobcats first round pick unless the Bobcats get a lottery pick.

21. Los Angeles Clippers from Minnesota Timberwolves Jeffery Taylor SF Vanderbilt The Clippers get a small forward to compliment Blake Griffin.

22. Orlando Magic John Jenkins SG Vanderbilt John Jenkins is a depth player who could fit in nicely with the Orlando Magic.

23. Boston Celtics Joshua Smith C UCLA Boston needs a center and then they will have the youth necessary to have a legit starting 5.

24. San Antonio Spurs Doron Lamb SG Kentucky The Spurs select the best available player here.

25. Philadelphia 76ers Kris Joseph SF Syracuse The 76ers get a small forward for depth.  The 76ers current small forward is Thaddeus Young who is more suited as a power forward.  Nikola Vucevic will likely take Thaddeus Young’s spot at power forward so getting a small forward to compete with Young is the next step that the 76ers have to take.

26. Dallas Mavericks Evan Fournier SG France Mark Cuban does something so crazy that he shocks every Mavericks fan in the country.  Mark Cuban drafts an international player from France.

27. Los Angeles Lakers William Buford SG Ohio State Kobe Bryant won’t be around forever.  The Lakers may as well find his successor now.  Darius Morris and William Buford could be the two guards who inspire the next generation of Lakers fans.

28. Chicago Bulls Christian Watford PF Indiana The Bulls have the luxury of taking the best player available for depth.

29. Oklahoma City Thunder Renardo Sidney PF Mississippi State The Thunder get a quality power forward who could provide an impact over time on the Oklahoma City Thunder roster.

30. Miami Heat Arnett Moltire SF Mississippi State Arnett Moltire the Mississippi State small forward is the best player available.  Miami takes the best player available for depth.