Orlando Magic 2013 NBA Draft: Part 4 – Rudy Gobert
Obviously replacing a player of Dwight Howard’s caliber is far from an enviable task. Fortunately, the Orlando Magic seem committed to the rebuilding process, which is ultimately the first step to moving forward with a franchise.
After all, the Oklahoma City Thunder did it in 2007 with Kevin Durant. However, the “Thunder model” is far from an easy design to emulate, as it demands so many crucial elements through the draft and the front office to be executed flawlessly(and with quite a bit of luck).
Over the course of the next week I will break down who I believe the be the top prospects for the Magic to pursue in the 2013 draft. And while some strongly believe they are a lock for a top-five pick, they will not be in the following article. As I strongly believe this team will put up a fight this season. Not so much for standings, but to prove to themselves that no one player defines a franchise.
That said, according to NBAdraft.net, the Magic are projected to have the 19th pick, where as an ideal and very possible situation would be the 1st. So to realistically temper expectations and still place the Magic within the lottery, we’ll place them right in the middle with the 9th overall selection.
So while it’s much harder to land a talent like Durant that late in the lottery, we all know the draft is anything but an exact science.
So who should the Magic select if they were to have the 9th overall selection? Here’s my fourth pick of the five.
Rudy Gobert/France/ 7‘1-235lbs/C
Rudy Gobert is a 7’1 defensive juggernaut, capable of altering shots and offensive schemes far more than his stat column could ever indicate. Although he’s one of the lesser known names in this years class simply because he’s an international prospect, this kid is oozing wih raw potential and an incredibly high ceiling.
Gobert clearly has yet to fill out his massive frame, but his mobility and length alone make him an extremely viable option for the Magic. He’s very much so a work in progress, but the fact he’s un-polished actually lends itself to the fact Orlando would be able to mold his talent into a role that could benefit them in the long run.
It’s unclear whether or not Gobert would actually fall to 9th, seeing as high upside centers are extremely hard to come by. But if lottery teams are looking for a substantial contribution immediately, he could easily slip on draft night much like Andre Drummond this past year.
Part 1 – Kyle Anderson
Part 2 – Lorenzo Brown
Part 3 – Steven Adams