2012 NBA Mock Draft – Consensus Ver 2.0
Each year HOOPSWORLD puts together a team of writers to look at the NBA Draft. The idea here is to illustrate how differently (or similarly) writers from various NBA markets see the 2012 NBA Draft.
So with that out of the way… Here is the second installment of the 2012 NBA Mock Draft – Consensus Draft.
Check out last week’s Version 1.0
Alex’s Notebook: One player that continues to be undervalued is St. John’s forward Moe Harkless. The 6-8 beanpole reportedly has a 7-2 wingspan and enough athleticism to make teams think twice before dismissing him as too much of a project. It’s true, he isn’t NBA ready, but he’s only 19 and since there’s a good chance he could fall to a playoff team, he likely won’t be asked to contribute immediately. The Dallas Mavericks, Boston Celtics and Orlando Magic should all seriously consider the Queens native, even if he just provides some energy off the bench for a few seasons. So far he hasn’t developed an outside shot, but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible. For now Harkless is a good finisher with quick feet and a good attitude; and coaches like Rick Carlisle and Doc Rivers can surely find a use for someone like that.
Yannis’ Notebook: Memphis guard Will Barton is one guy who I can’t help but feel like has been underrated up to this point in the draft process. After thorough evaluation, it’s clear that he’s one of the most well-rounded and effective players in this draft class. The fact that he’s only a sophomore makes him all the more intriguing.
Barton scores in a variety of ways and isn’t very demonstrative; he’s had plenty of games where he quietly goes for 20 or even 30. While being a silent assassin, he’s also manages to grab more than a handful of rebounds and collect a few assists. He’s perceived to be ball dominant by some, but he actually does the least amount of his work in isolation. He also shot 50 percent from the field and a respectable 36 percent from deep, an aspect of his game that is rapidly improving.
Where Barton really stands out is in transition and on the defensive end. He is really aggressive and creative on the break. Defensively, he uses his tremendous length and understated quickness to really be a deterrent for the opposition.
Not without flaws, Barton could stand to add some strength. It would help him a great deal in defending against the stronger players that he’s going to see night in and night out. He’ll benefit from it offensively as well since he’ll be able to absorb more contact and be able to finish through it more often.
If Barton continues to be projected in the late first round, early second prior to the draft, I could very easily see him turning into the Marcus Thornton of this year’s class. He’ll immediately make teams regret passing on him.
Based off of his skill set, Barton would best fit with a team that has a solid presence at the point guard. 26 to Indiana should be his floor, while every team from 16 on should also give him strong consideration.
Joel’s Notebook: We know who the front-runners are in this draft right now, but we also know that eventually workouts and interviews and the combine will help some players raise their stock. I’ve got a feeling that the two kids from Baylor are going to be among those guys.
Perry Jones and Quincy Miller were once very, very high on mock drafts, but that was before the NCAA season started and neither player necessarily blew scouts out of the water. We expected a lot more out of them, but the beauty about both Jones and Miller is that we can still expect a lot out of them.
Jones, a likely top-ten pick, is one of those players with the physical tools to turn a lot of GM’s heads leading up to the draft. He’s not only tall, but also very talented and athletic. Given the opportunity, he’ll likely be able to convince teams that Baylor just wasn’t a good fit for his talents, and that in an NBA atmosphere he could transform into a superstar. Given the right fit, he could potentially slide up to the 5-7 range.
Miller, meanwhile, is projected to end up getting selected somewhere between picks 15 and 20, but he could see a rise as well due to his own athleticism, which is accompanied by a 7’4” wingspan. He tore his ACL as a senior in high school, so some say he’s just now getting his explosiveness back, but if he, like Perry Jones, can prove his inconsistencies at Baylor were just a blip and that he’s better served in the NBA, we could see both players’ stock rise very quickly as we lead up to June.
Steve’s Notebook: There are a couple of players in the 2012 NBA Draft class that NBA executives and scouts just don’t have a solid read on. The biggest – literally – is UCONN big man Andre Drummond.
Everyone answers the question the same way – “He’s just too big and athletic to pass on”. The problem is almost none of those asked has a real read on what kind of professional he’ll be.
Because of Drummond’s draft stock, his camp is likely going to be extremely guarded in how many workouts they will allow him to take part in, which means if the four or five teams that get to work him out don’t fall in love Drummond could be a lot like Brandon Knight last year and Brandon Jennings a couple of years ago and get not have a defined floor.
There is almost no doubt that Drummond goes top 5, the questions is does he go #2 or #5, because that will change the landscape of the draft pretty significantly.
Last week, we talked about Mississippi State’s Arnett Moultrie being a hot name to watch. The other big that has executives interested is Fab Melo.
Melo did some early prep training at IMG Basketball in Sarasota and was the hit of the campus. Sources say he was a hard worker that was always fun to be around and that his physical size is simply impressive.
There are some players that measure out big, and then there are those that play big, and Fab Melo seems to be a “play big” type of player.
With so many 6’10 or taller guys in the class – 23 of them made our Top 100 – Melo will have to show NBA teams that he is a smart basketball player. That’s not the label he carried coming out of Syracuse so workouts for Fab Melo are really going to matter.
So who are these guys?… Alex Raskin has covered the NBA for four years and is based in New York with the Knicks and the Nets. Yannis Koutroupis is HOOPSWORLD’s college basketball editor. He has also covered the NBA for six years and covers the San Antonio Spurs. Joel Brigham has covered the NBA for seven years and covers the Central Division for HOOPSWORLD including the Bulls and the Pacers. Steve Kyler is the editor and publisher of HOOPSWORLD and has covered the NBA for 12 seasons.