2010 NBA Draft and Offseason Blog

Written by Paul Banks of the Washington Times, and David Kay of the The Sports Bank.
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Larry Sanders Brings a Unique Skill Set to Milwaukee

The Milwaukee Bucks' 15th pick in the 2010 NBA Draft, junior VCU power forward Larry Sanders, has only been playing organized basketball for five years, so he's still got a ways to go before reaching his full potential. But Bucks general manager John Hammond won't label him a project, and sees his lack of development as an advantage.

Sanders has been on the Bucks' radar for as long as any of the 60-plus prospects they evaluated over the last month. He was also the only player rumored to be linked to Milwaukee at No. 15 after word got out that the Bucks allegedly made a verbal commitment to Sanders and coach Scott Skiles supposedly raved about the lengthy forward after taking him out to dinner.

Whether those rumors were true or not, the fact remains that Sanders, who models his face-up post game after Kevin Garnett, will provide Milwaukee with a unique combination of size, athleticism and speed that was not present on the 2009-10 squad. His defense and shot-blocking ability alone are good enough to get him on the floor consistently as a rookie, but Hammond was happy to call his continually developing offensive game "imaginative."

"(Larry Sanders) is a guy you can put on the floor immediately just because of what he can do on the defensive end and how he can rebound the ball," Hammond said. "He's a little raw offensively but we liked his imagination and the fact that he feels like he can be a good offensive player; we were really excited about the opportunity to get him."

Part of the appeal of Sanders' "raw" talent simply comes from his physical traits. Consider the following measurables for Rookie X and Rookie Y:

Rookie X:
Height (with shoes): 6-10.5, weight: 222, body fat: 4.6%, hand size (width by length): 11 x 9.8, wingspan: 7-6, standing reach: 9-4, max vertical: 28, 3/4 court sprint: 3.27

Rookie Y:
Height (with shoes): 6-10.75, weight: 292, body fat: 16.4%, hand size (width by length): 10 x 9.3, wingspan: 7-6, standing reach: 9-5, max vertical: 27.5, 3/4 court sprint: 3.55

Rookie X is Larry Sanders, and Rookie Y is DeMarcus Cousins, the No. 5 overall pick in the 2010 NBA Draft. Other than a weight discrepancy of 50 pounds and body fat percentage difference of, there is very little that separates the two first-rounders when it comes to unteachable gift of size. Sanders and Cousins have very different styles of play, but if Sanders puts on 20-25 pounds of muscle he would be a lot closer to playing like Kevin Garnett than Hakim Warrick.

"We classify him as something different than what we have on our team right now," Hammond said. "He's probably the fastest big in the draft, maybe one of the fastest players flat out in the draft. The guy's speed from end line to end line is absolutely amazing for a guy his size."

Hammond has said throughout the draft process that the team would not settle for a player unable to contribute in some capacity right away, and it's fair to assume Sanders will tally around 15-20 minutes a night utilizing his transition speed and defending alongside Andrew Bogut as they fortify an interior with length fit for Stretch Armstrong. Maybe that's a slight exaggeration, but having two bigs with wingspans as long as Yao Ming is tall brings on some level of intimidation.

"I'll be working in a setting in Milwaukee where I can only get stronger and be able to guard all positions," Sanders said. "The sky's the limit as far as my defense goes."

It may be a year or two before Sanders fully grows into his body, consistently hits his 10-15 foot jump shots, and learns the nuances of NBA-level interior defense, but he is already a fan of the city and its team, and said all the right things in his first of many interviews with the Wisconsin basketball media.

"My dedication to working hard and my energy allows me to catch onto plays," Sanders said. "In a situation like (Milwaukee's) I can learn more than ever, and it should only raise my game up higher."

Recent NBA Draft and Offseason Blog Entries:

Four-Team Trade - 8/12
More with Ted Leonsis: Turning around the Washington Wizards - 8/11
Ted Leonsis Taking Washington Wizards on a New Path - 8/8
2010 NBA Free Agency Signings Analysis - 8/5 (Shaq)
NBA Announced Nationally Televised Game Schedule - 8/4
Michigan State Dismisses Chris Allen - 8/4
2011 NBA Free Agents - 7/30
2010 NBA Offseason Losers - 7/29
2010 NBA Offseason Winners - 7/28
Larry Bird Ranked Worst NBA GM - 7/27
Chris Paul Possible Trades - 7/26
Tracy McGrady to Chicago looking Extremely Likely - 7/26
2010 NBA Free Agency Signings Analysis - 7/24 (Kurt Thomas)
2011 NBA Draft Trades - 7/24
2010 NBA Free Agency Signings Analysis - 7/23 (Jefferson)
John Hammond May Have One More Transaction Up His Sleeve - 7/23
2010 NBA Free Agency Signings Analysis - 7/20 (Kleiza)
Evan Turner vs. Purdue Fans in Heated Twitter Trash Talk - 7/19
Top 10 2010 NBA Free Agents Available - 7/18
2010 NBA Free Agency Signings Analysis - 7/18 (Brad Miller)
2010 NBA Free Agency Signings Analysis - 7/17 (Brewer)
Magic Match Offer Sheet for J.J. Redick - 7/17
2010 NBA Free Agency Signings Analysis - 7/16
How Does Wesley Matthews Fit in Portland? - 7/16
2010 NBA Free Agency Signings Analysis - 7/15
Jefferson-Chandler Trades Analysis - 7/14
Michael Redd Era Over in Milwaukee - 7/14
2010 NBA Free Agency Signings Analysis - 7/13
2010 NBA Free Agency Signings Analysis (Last Weekend's) - 7/13
Childress-Turkoglu-Morrow Trades Analysis - 7/13
Sixers' Evan Turner Struggled in Summer League - 7/13
Specific Details of NCAA Tournament Expansion Announced Today - 7/13
Bulls Sign Kyle Korver, Offer Sheet to J.J. Redick - 7/11
Brainwashed Timberwolves Fans Fail to See the Light - 7/10
Winner in LeBron Sweepstakes? Milwaukee Bucks - 7/10
Larry Sanders Brings a Unique Skill Set to Milwaukee - 7/10
LeBron James to Miami Heat Recap - 7/9
2010 NBA Free Agency Signings Analysis - 7/9
Knicks-Warriors David Lee Trade Analysis - 7/9
Timberwolves-Heat Michael Beasley Trade Analysis - 7/9
Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh to Miami Heat - 7/8
2010 NBA Free Agency Signings Analysis - 7/8
The LeBron James Show - 7/8
Carlos Boozer Signs with Bulls - 7/8
Profiling Milwaukee's Potential Point Guards - 7/8
2010 NBA Free Agency Signings Analysis - 7/7
2010 NBA Summer League Recap - 7/7
2010 NBA Free Agency Signings Analysis - 7/6
2010 NBA Summer League Recap - 7/6
2010 NBA Free Agency Signings Analysis - 7/5
2010 NBA Free Agency Signings Analysis - 7/4
2010 NBA Free Agency Signings Analysis - 7/3
It's Not LeBron or Bust for the Bulls - 7/3
2010 NBA Free Agency Signings Analysis - 7/2
2010 NBA Free Agency: Day 1 - 7/2
Former NBA Player Kendall Gill on the Bulls Free Agent Prospects - 7/2
2010 NBA Draft Day Trades - 6/25
Foreign Flavor Losing Flair in NBA Draft - 6/24
Bucks-Warriors Corey Maggette Trade - 6/23
2010 NBA Draft Mailbag - 6/22
76ers-Kings Samuel Dalembert Trade - 6/18
2010 NBA Draft Mailbag - 6/3
2010 NBA Draft Lottery Odds Breakdown - 5/17
Evan Turner's Flaws - 5/13
Where Will Joe Johnson Go? - 5/12
Bulls Could Use Oklahoma State's James Anderson - 5/10
2010 NBA Draft Mailbag - 5/9
2010 NBA Draft Early Entries - 5/9
Debate's Over: Deron Williams is the Best Point Guard - 5/8
Someone to Be Drafted from DePaul? Yes, Really - 5/7
Gani Lawal: Testing the NBA Draft Waters - 5/6
Can De'Sean Butler Be Mr. Clutch in the NBA? - 5/5
Derrick Favors: No. 1 Big Man on 2010 NBA Draft Boards - 5/4
Jordan Crawford: More Than the Guy Who Dunked on LeBron - 5/3
Devin Ebanks is an NBA Draft Wildcard - 5/3
Where Will Dwayne Wade Go? - 5/1
Where Will Chris Bosh Go? - 5/1
2010 NBA Trade Deadline Grades - 2/19
NBA Offseason and Draft Blog - Home

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2017 NBA Mock Draft - June 23

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