Steve Alexander

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NBA Draft Recap

Friday, June 24, 2011


Heat: 31 Norris Cole
Cole, a guard out of Cleveland State, can play, but whether he challenges Mario Chalmers or Mike Bibby for playing time remains to be seen. I doubt he makes an impact in Miami, who will continue to look for a real point guard between now and the start of the season.

Bucks: 19 Tobias Harris, 40 Jon Leuer
The Bucks got rid of ball hog Corey Maggette and picked up Stephen Jackson and Shaun Livingston from the Bobcats, and Beno Udrih from the Kings. They also shipped John Salmons to Sacramento, clearing the way for Jackson to carry the scoring load next year. I like Harris, a forward out of Tennessee, and Leuer is a nice story after playing collegiately at Wisconsin. This was a big night for the Bucks, but Udrih is going to waste away on the bench behind Brandon Jennings. The Bucks also have a large stable of power forwards, so don't expect much out of Harris as a rookie. The biggest question is how Jackson will react to playing for Scott Skiles in Milwaukee.

Timberwolves: 2 Derrick Williams, 43 Malcolm Lee
The fact the Wolves didn't choke and went with Williams is a win any way you look at it. Lee is a defense-first guard and was also a nice grab. I think the Wolves could have done more, but it's tough to be disappointed after getting Williams, who may end up being the star of this draft. Now the Wolves just have to figure out how to find minutes for Williams, Michael Beasley and Kevin Love, as well as find a head coach. They also picked up Brad Miller from Houston, who will be psyched about the hunting prospects in Minnesota. He'll back up Darko Milicic, but could also start if his legs are healthy enough and David Kahn ever comes to the realization that Darko is his starting center.

Nets: 25 Marshon Brooks, 31 Bogdan Bogdanovic, 36 Jordan Williams
SG Brooks was a steal at 25, as he could have gone as high as 15 to the Pacers, while SF Bogdanovic and C Williams are decent prospects. Brooks is going to get some playing time, as the Nets are thin at shooting guard, and given what they had to work with, I like what the Nets did last night.

Hornets: None
They sold their only pick (Josh Harrellson) to the Knicks, so Chris Paul won't have any fresh faces to work with next year.

Knicks: 17 Iman Shumpert, 45 Josh Harrellson
Spike Lee said he'd never heard of Landry Fields when he was drafted, and the same can be said for Shumpert, who was targeted to go a few picks earlier to the Suns. He's a solid point guard who can play defense, but won't see much run with Chauncey Billups around. Harrellson's a project and will need to get stronger to make an impact. Shumpert's got some game, but Knicks fans are not feeling very good about last night's action.

Thunder: 24 Reggie Jackson
I like Jackson, but there are questions about his coachability and attitude. The Thunder made him a promise some time ago, so he didn't bother working out for anyone. But with Russell Westbrook and James Harden around, don't expect to see much from Jackson any time soon.

Magic: 32 Justin Harper, 53 DeAndre Liggins
The Magic picked up PF Harper from the Cavaliers and he's a great shooter for a big man, but defense and strength are issues. Liggins is an athletic swingman who can play defense, but might have trouble making the team. The Magic didn't have much to work with last night, and it shows.

76ers: 16 Nikola Vucevic, 50 Lavoy Allen
The Sixers wanted bigs and them with C Vucevic and PF Allen. Vucevic was their target all along and I actually got that one right in my mock draft. He was the biggest player in the draft, but probably isn't going to challenge Spencer Hawes for a job anytime soon. There are questions about Allen's motivation, so don't expect him to make an impact next year. With the 16th pick, I think the Sixers could have done more.

Suns: 13 Markieff Morris
The Suns were targeting guard Iman Shumpert here, but ended up going with PF Morris and filling a clear need. I'm surprised Markieff went in front of his twin, Marcus, but he had great workouts and impressed the Suns. Marcus went with the following pick to the Rockets, which is a cool story. Morris could make some noise next season, as Channing Frye plays more like a shooting guard than a PF.

Trail Blazers: 21 Nolan Smith, 51 Jon Diebler
Smith went earlier than I thought he would and will help make up for the loss of Rudy Fernandez, who was sent to Dallas. He's going to be a bench player in Portland, and there were arguably better guards available. Diebler is a 3-point specialist who doesn't play defense, so I'm not expecting much out of him, either. The Blazers also picked up Raymond Felton from Denver, sending Andre Miller to the Nuggets. Felton will start at PG and offer solid fantasy value next season.

Kings: 10 Jimmer Fredette, 35 Tyler Honeycutt, 60 Isaiah Thomas
The Kings apparently felt like they needed Fredette in order to sell tickets, and traded down with the Bucks to get him at No. 10. I think he's a bench player in the NBA, offering instant offense, but there's also a chance the Kings will try to start him at point guard. Beno Udrih is in Milwaukee now, while they picked up John Salmons to potentially start at SF. If Tyreke Evans starts at PG over Jimmer (and I think he will), he's going to be a fantasy beast. And a lineup of Evans, Marcus Thornton, Salmons, Jason Thompson and DeMarcus Cousins, with Jimmer off the bench, should be competitive. But there may not be enough basketballs to go around.

Spurs: 15 Kawhi Leonard, 29 Cory Joseph, 42 Davis Bertans
The Spurs traded G George Hill to the Pacers to get Leonard, which was a GREAT move. Hill was playing behind Tony Parker, while Gary Neal will fill the hole left behind. Richard Jefferson is simply not very good, and Leonard could actually challenge him for a job. Joseph was a solid pickup late in the Round 1, while Bertans has potential if and when he decides to come over. The Spurs rarely fail on draft night and hit a home run on Thursday. Put Leonard on the list of Rookie of the Year sleepers. He could make a big impact if Gregg Popovich learns to trust him.

Raptors: 5 Jonas Valanciunas
The Raptors are tired of Andrea Bargnani at center and swung for the fences on Valanciunas. The problem is he won't play in the NBA next year, and possibly the year after that. I thought they'd go for Bismack Biyombo here, but there's little doubt Valanciunas will succeed in the NBA, once he shows up. But in the short term, the Raptors are the same team they were last year. And that team won just 22 games.

Jazz: 3 Enes Kanter, 12 Alec Burks
The Jazz arguably got a solid center in Kanter, as well as one of the best shooting guards in the draft. This was a big night for the Jazz, although fans are disappointed they didn't land Jimmer. Mehmet Okur's career is on the ropes, while it will be interesting to see how they handle Al Jefferson, Paul Millsap, Derrick Favors and Kanter. Someone's got to go. Burks is a sleeper and could possibly start at SG on opening night, so keep an eye on him.

Wizards: 6 Jan Vesely, 18 Chris Singleton, 34 Shelvin Mack
The Wizards needed small forwards, despite rostering the most expensive one in the league in Rashard Lewis, and got two very good ones in Vesely and Singleton. Vesely is an athletic freak, while Singleton is going to play D and be a team leader. Mack should make the team and help back up the guards off the bench. This went about as well as the Wizards could have hoped for.


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Steve "Dr. A" Alexander is the senior editor for the NBA for Rotoworld.com and a contributor to NBCSports.com. The 2014-15 NBA season marks his 13th year of covering fantasy hoops for Rotoworld. Follow him on Twitter - @Docktora.
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