2013 NBA Mock Draft – Consensus Ver 8.0
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 2013 NBA Draft. So with that out of the way…
Here is the eighth installment:
Alex’s Notebook: Livio Jean-Charles cracked my first round for the first time this week because I’ve heard rumblings that the San Antonio Spurs will draft him at No. 29 and stash him overseas for at least one year. This makes a lot of sense, considering the Spurs have done this before and they have some of the best international scouts in the league. At 19 years old, Jean-Charles has a lot of potential and he could fit right in alongside fellow French players Tony Parker, Boris Diaw and Nando de Colo.
Ben McLemore will only work out for three teams before the draft: the Cleveland Cavaliers, Orlando Magic and Phoenix Suns. In recent days, there have been a number of reports about McLemore’s draft stock slipping due to a poor work ethic (among other things). I spoke with McLemore over the phone on Tuesday afternoon and he had no idea where that was coming from. “I’m a workaholic,” McLemore said with a laugh. “I like to be in the gym. Sometimes, it’s hard for them to get me out of the gym, because I’m always trying to improve. My mindset is that I want to be great. I don’t just want to be good. With my mindset, athleticism and work ethic, I can be great.”
I’ve had Michael Carter-Williams going No. 13 to the Dallas Mavericks for quite awhile now, but I won’t be surprised if he goes significantly higher on draft night. He has a lot of fans around the NBA. Quite a few executives have told me that they like Carter-Williams over Trey Burke. They feel that Carter-Williams can be a match-up nightmare in the NBA due to his 6’6 frame and 6’7 wingspan. Some team in the top 10 may end up taking the former Syracuse point guard or a team could try to trade up for him.
For the second straight week, I have Nate Wolters going in the first round. The end of the first round and the second round are so hard to predict in this draft. There are a lot of good role players available in that range, but it’s hard to tell who will go where. A lot of executives like Wolters because he’s a gym rat and he has game film and advanced stats from South Dakota State that indicate he could be a very good player at the next level. However, who knows what will happen on draft night? It may not be Wolters, Lucas Nogueira and Tony Snell wrapping up the first round. It could be Ricky Ledo, Isaiah Canaan and Allen Crabbe. Once you get to that point with this draft class, it’s somewhat of a tossup.
Yannis’ Notebook: With the draft just over a week away, Shabazz Muhammad seems to have as wide of a range as anyone in the draft. He appears to still be in the mix as high as seven, where he’s had multiple successful workouts for the Sacramento Kings.
Muhammad could slip, though, and if he does whatever team he ends up with is going to be quite happy.
One thing that doesn’t get talked about enough with Muhammad is the fact that he’s absolutely ready to play at the next level. He’s always been a hard worker and a fierce competitor, but he has the ability to make jump shots, score in transition and defend at a high level, all of which should translate immediately.
The fact that the superstar expectations are no longer there for Muhammad is a good thing. He doesn’t have to worry about going to a team and having to take over right away. He can simply fit in and do what he does best.
The Kings are trying to change their culture and build a winner. Muhammad has some red flags in terms of the people that are in his inner circle and the fact that he’s a year older than previously believed, but he’s still an elite talent and someone who can help a team win games right out of the gate. If they go with him, they could end up being one of the happier teams at the end of the season, much like the Golden State Warriors were with Harrison Barnes.
Joel’s Notebook: Usually about this time in the mock drafting process, I’ve settled into some habits with placing guys into slots, which means I’ve set up these sort of ceilings and floors around where I believe certain guys should fall, and right around now I stop taking into consideration the fact that some teams don’t make logical selections. Instead, they fall in love with the players who are easy to fall in love with, and they talk themselves out of what should in some cases be pretty easy decisions.
That’s why I put Alex Len at #1. I don’t think even the Cavaliers know what they’re going to do with that pick at this point, but Len is the latest buzz name, so I’m going to place him at the top of my mock this week because I’m not positive enough about Nerlens Noel to believe that he’s definitely the guy there.
I also jumped Michael Carter-Williams to Detroit at #8, even though Trey Burke was available there, because I think they have more need for a pure point guard than another combo guy like Burke or C.J. McCollum, and that’s how Burke fell to OKC at #12, which, quite honestly, would be a steal. The Thunder are good at grabbing those, though, aren’t they?
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope at #9 might be a stretch, but they really need a two guard out there and there are going to be all kinds of interesting players at all sorts of different positions when they pick again at #26. Pope and Glen Rice would certainly give Ricky Rubio some new toys, and would inject some much-needed scoring into that Minnesota lineup.
And finally, Erick Green made a huge jump this week, too. He led the nation in scoring last year but is getting knocked down because he’s only 6’3”. Didn’t we say the same thing about Dwyane Wade and Stephen Curry in the past? I think with all the guys that have dropped out of this draft, he’s got a great chance to go reasonably high in the first round. Somewhere in the 20s seems like a reasonable guess.
Steve’s Notebook: As one NBA agent with several players in the 2013 NBA Draft recently said, next week will be when teams get serious about doing business.
Up until now, teams have been parading in what may be the largest swath of draft workouts in recent years. When the NBA announced that the annual Chicago Draft Combine would be two full weeks earlier, it’s now clear why. Teams needed a lot of time to schedule the dozens of players they have had in over the last three weeks.
With the NBA draft less than a week away, there still are not clear cut answers to how this draft is going to play out, and virtually no two teams seem to see the draft the same way.
There are a few draft picks said to be readily available for the right price… The No. 4 pick from Charlotte, they’d rather have a proven veteran and would take on a contract to get one. The No. 9 from Minnesota could also be had for a proven veteran. The No. 10 from Portland could be on the move as the Blazers are not said to be in love with anyone projected to them. Dallas has the No. 13 on the market, but are finding their options to move the pick a little jumbled with so many picks in front of them available.
Memphis is looking to buy a first-round pick, so expect the Grizzlies to get in the mix and send some cash to a team divesting a pick. Philadelphia is trying to do the same.
San Antonio and Cleveland may be using the “draft and stash” method with their late first round picks.
So with less than a week to go, there are still as many questions as answers, but it is shaping up to be an unpredictable night, one that could have dozens of transactions.
The 2013 NBA Draft takes place on Thursday June 27th in Brooklyn.
So who are these guys?… Alex Kennedy has covered the NBA for four years and covers the NBA from Orlando. Yannis Koutroupis is HOOPSWORLD’s college basketball editor. He has also covered the NBA for seven years and covers the San Antonio Spurs, the Houston Rockets and the D-League. Joel Brigham has covered the NBA for eight 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 13 seasons and has handled the Mock Draft for USA Today Sports for the past three years.