Steve Alexander

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NBA Draft: Team Needs

Friday, May 25, 2012


Indiana – 26th pick


Leandro Barbosa UFA

Needs – Depth, best player available


The Pacers pride themselves on depth and don’t have any glaring holes, except for not having a true superstar (sorry, Danny Granger).  They should be looking for the best player available, which could be Washington combo guard Tony Wroten.


Clippers – No first-round pick (to Boston)


Chauncey Billups UFA, Randy Foye UFA, Mo Williams PO, Nick Young UFA, Kenyon Martin UFA, Reggie Evans UFA

Needs – SG, PF and C depth


The Clippers could lose several key players and don’t even have a first-round pick, as Boston will likely get it due to the Eric Bledsoe deal.  They do have a late second-round pick, but don’t look for the Clippers to improve much through the draft this year.  They’re obviously set with Chris Paul, Caron Butler, Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan in the starting lineup, but could use a shooting guard if several of the aforementioned players leave.


Lakers – No first-round pick (traded to Cleveland in Ramon Sessions deal)


Ramon Sessions PO, Matt Barnes UFA

Needs – SF and depth


Sessions has a player option but you have to think he’ll stick with the Lakers, while a major shakeup could be coming for L.A.  Pau Gasol is on thin ice, while Kobe Bryant isn’t thrilled with his current supporting cast.  As it stands now, the Lakers have the final pick in the draft, and without taking the shakeup into consideration, their biggest need is at SF. 


Memphis – 25th pick


Needs – Best player available


With a starting five of Mike Conley, Tony Allen, Rudy Gay, Zach Randolph and Marc Gasol, and a bench with O.J. Mayo and Demarre Carroll, the Grizzlies will simply be looking for the best player available.  And maybe that’s Baylor forward Quincy Miller.


Miami – 27th pick


Needs – C and PG


The Heat are set at SG, SF and PF with Dwyane Wade, LeBron James and Chris Bosh, and seem to be surviving with Mario Chalmers and Norris Cole at PG, and Ronny Turiaf and Joel Anthony at C.  They’ll be looking for the best player available, but taking a C seems to make the most sense.  Vandy’s Festus Ezeli might be the guy.


Milwaukee – Late lottery pick


Carlos Delfino UFA, Ersan Ilyasova UFA

Needs – SF, PF and C


The Bucks are set at guard with Brandon Jennings and Monta Ellis in the backcourt, but losing Delfino and Ilyasova would leave some holes.  Add in the fact they traded Andrew Bogut, and they’ll be looking for anyone with size with their picks.  They do have swingman Mike Dunleavy, and big men Ekpe Udoh and Drew Gooden, but they will be targeting more guys with size in the draft.  Carolina’s Tyler Zeller makes sense here.


Minnesota – 15th pick (via Jazz)


Needs - SG


Ricky Rubio, Luke Ridnour, Michael Beasley, Wes Johnson, Kevin Love, Derrick Williams and Nikola Pekovic give the Wolves a solid foundation, but they are clearly lacking at SG (Martell Webster, Malcolm Lee and Wayne Ellington).  That should be their only focus with the 15th pick, and Washington’s Terrence Ross could be the guy.  Then again, David Kahn loves point guards, so you never know what he’ll do next.


New Jersey (Brooklyn) – No first round pick (sent to Portland)


Deron Williams PO, Gerald Green UFA, Gerald Wallace PO, Kris Humphries UFA

Needs – PG and PF


The Nets don’t have a pick until No. 57 and the status of Deron Williams and Brook Lopez is completely up in the air with trade talk, and whether Williams opts-in or not.  They’re likely going to need replacements for both Williams and Humphries, but won’t find them at the end of the draft.


New Orleans – Two lottery picks (one from Timberwolves)


Eric Gordon RFA, Carl Landry UFA, Chris Kaman UFA

Needs – PF, SF and backup C


Gordon could be traded, while Landry and Kaman appear to be on their way out.  They still have big guys like Emeka Okafor, Gustavo Ayon and Jason Smith, while Jarrett Jack, Marco Belinelli, Al Farouq-Aminu and Trevor Ariza should all be able to hold down the backcourt and small forward spots if the oft-injured Gordon is moved.  Chances are they’ll take the two best players available, which could be UConn big man Andre Drummond and UNC PF John Henson.


New York – No first-round pick


Jeremy Lin* UFA, Baron Davis UFA, Landry Fields* UFA, J.R. Smith PO, Steve Novak* UFA

Needs – SG, backup PG, backup PF and backup C


Lin, Novak and Fields could all end up back in New York, but it depends on how the Bird Rule falls, which won’t be decided until mid-June.  The only thing we really know is that Carmelo Anthony, Amare Stoudemire and Tyson Chandler will be back and locked into starting jobs.  The Knicks, who don’t have a pick until late in Round 2, will simply be taking the best player available, unless they find out they’re going to lose Lin, which will mean they take a point guard.  J.R. Smith will likely opt-in, and could start at SG in New York next season.

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