If you have a question about the draft or my 2011 NBA Mock Draft, leave a comment at the bottom of this page and I will try to get to it in my next mailbag.
2011 NBA Draft - Mailbag (June 21):
Do you think Travis Leslie could go at the end of the 1st round to Chicago? I think his athleticism would be a great complement to Kyle Korver's shooting and Keith Bogans' defense. I know him and Brewer are similar players (can't shoot), but Brewer is not good with the ball in his hands, while Leslie is great when he as the rock as well as off the ball.
--> Leslie would make sense for the Bulls with one of their first rounders but I think there are better players who fit that same type of description as Leslie. Plus, Leslie could actually be on the board when Chicago is picking in the second round at No. 43 so I doubt the Bulls reach for him at Nos. 28 or 30.
Georgia Tech's Iman Shumpert is a guy whom I have the Bulls selecting although it looks like he will be off the board by then. He is also a freakish athlete like Leslie, but can play either guard spot and is a better outside shooter which gives him an edge. UCLA's Malcolm Lee is another player who fits that mold and is also one of the best perimeter defenders in this class. I'll throw Marquette's Jimmy Butler out there as well and his size at 6-8 is much more ideal than Leslie who is 6-4. Duke's Nolan Smith and Charles Jenkins from Hofstra are also players to keep an eye on when the Bulls are picking.
From Draft Guy:
I think the Wizards should take a long look at Klay Thompson or Alec Burks to complement John Wall in that backcourt.
--> Grabbing either one of those guys would be a pretty big reach for the Wizards at No. 6. Yes, Nick Young is a restricted free agent but it is not a for sure thing that he will leave this summer so reaching for a shooting guard when you already have Young and Jordan Crawford in the fold seems like a waste of a pick when there is a huge hole at small forward. The only way I would be OK with them taking Thompson or Burks is if they traded down to do so. More than likely, Washington will hope to grab someone like Marshon Brooks or Jordan Hamilton with their 18th pick to add some backcourt depth.
Vesely, Hamilton, Cole would be a fantastic haul that potentially fits the biggest needs. I still like Leonard over Vesely, but after bringing in Wall, Crawford, Booker and Seraphin last season, I'll trust the front office this time around.
--> I couldn't agree more. If the Wizards end up with Vesely, Hamilton, and Cole, they will get an A+ grade from me. I think Hamilton is undervalued in the 2011 NBA Draft and will be a great bench scorer in the NBA. If Vesely can end up playing some three, that is a big, long frontcourt of McGee, Blatche and Vesely. As for Cole, I think ideally Washington could use a veteran to back up Wall but they could still find a cheap option in free agency to help tutor Wall and Cole if this scenario plays out.
I really think the pistons should trade up for the number 2 pick. Then they could take Derrick Williams which is exactly what they need. A lot of people in Detroit want us to go back to that hardnose blue collar type team but I think that Tom Gores will want them to be more of an exciting team. I personally believe that anyone who watches the Pistons would agree that they need an exciting player or 2. Maybe they could find a way to get the second pick and keep their 8th pick as well. Then maybe we could try for Kemba or Knight with the 8th pick. That would be an exciting team to watch, unlike the current one that doesn't even have a player that is close to a star, let alone a superstar.
--> In theory, that makes sense. The problem is the Pistons have zero tradable assets unless they are willing to deal Greg Monroe, which I doubt they would want to do to move up to No. 2 when that would just leave an even bigger hole in the middle for them. Otherwise, who are you going to trade to move up to No. 2? Ben Gordon? Rip Hamilton? Charlie Villanueva? The Timberwolves, or any other team for that matter, would laugh at that offer. Look for Detroit to stay at No. 8 and add a physical post player like Tristan Thompson or Bismack Biyombo to pair with Greg Monroe - unless of course Kemba Walker falls, then he would be in play there as well.
I have no problems with your mock draft for the Raiders. I'm sure you're aware of the need at MLB, but doubling up on defensive tackles would make as much sense given the lack of pass rush outside of Mack.
@jsemmens I've been to the Big Board in the past, but it's still an inefficient way of going about a mock. Not to mention, reports and the people writing them change, no? I come to Walt's site because I used to like his insight on every player. Now, it's simply team needs and a very limited amount of actual analysis. You definitely need SOME amount of explanation behind a pick with regards to team need, but you need much more of the player evaluation angle. Any dummy can write why a particular team "needs" a specific position; it takes a pretty good eye to understand what player needs to fill it. Again, just my 2 cents.
Here's my mock based on team need, prospect value and prevailing opinion as well as some ideas of my own. Please let me know about the team(s) that you follow more closely, and any picks that you agree or disagree with. Please comment, and feel free to rate.