- HOOPSWORLD | Basketball News & NBA Rumors - http://www.hoopsworld.com -
NBA AM: Bobcats Can’t Afford Draft Day Whiff
Posted By Lang Greene On May 17, 2013 @ 9:36 am In NBA | No Comments
2013 NBA Draft prospect Allen Crabbe, a former California guard, discusses his strengths and how he'll help a NBA team in today's video of the day.Watch More Video Here
Pivotal Draft For Charlotte Bobcats
Posting a 21-61 mark, the Charlotte Bobcats wrapped up another disappointing regular season campaign and the outlook going forward for its fan base is one of extensive rebuilding that will require patience.
The Bobcats are positioned to be mid-level players in the free agency market with just $48 million in guaranteed salaries on the books for the 2014 season. If veteran guard Ben Gordon decides to opt out of the final year of his deal, the team could clear an additional $13 million off the books – though such a move is unlikely. The likelihood of a top shelf free agent, in their prime, considering Charlotte as a landing spot this summer is also slim.
In regards to the trading block, if you exclude the team’s latest lottery picks, the only players who would generate interest around the league are Ramon Sessions and Brendan Haywood. Both guys, while serviceable, wouldn’t net a marquee player in return to improve the club’s place in the league’s standings. Forward Tyrus Thomas is a player the Bobcats would like to move, but he is owed over $18 million over the next two seasons with deteriorating productivity.
If the Bobcats are going to improve their fortunes it is going to be primarily driven by the draft.
The Bobcats finished this past season with the second worst record in the league and will have a 19.9 percent chance of securing the first pick in June’s draft, an 18.8 percent chance at the second overall pick, a 17.1 percent chance at the third pick, a 31.9 percent chance at the fourth pick and a 12.3 percent chance at the fifth pick.
Charlotte can finish no lower than fifth.
The draft lottery will be held on May 21. The team has participated in the draft lottery seven times and have netted a selection in the top three on two occasions.
According to HOOPSWORLD’s latest mock draft, the top five players on the entire board are Kentucky’s Nerlens Noel, Kansas’ Ben McLemore, Georgetown’s Otto Porter, Indiana’s Victor Oladipo and UCLA’s Shabazz Muhammad.
All of those players, would provide an immediate boost to the Bobcats’ current talent level and a chance to contribute from the start of their rookie season. Although the presence of forward Michael Kidd-Gilchrist already on the roster will likely have the team look in a different direction than Porter since both play a similar role on the floor.
Publicly, Charlotte is speaking a message of wanting to compete at a higher level. The team relieved Mike Dunlap of his coaching duties after the season and have begun to make internal changes to its staff. Although the 2014 campaign likely won’t see the team pushing for a playoff spot, if the club gets this draft right the glimmer of hope for its disappointed fan base would become much clearer to the naked eye.
Bobcats First Round Draft Picks By Year
2004: Emeka Okafor (2)
2005: Raymond Felton (5) and Sean May (13)
2006: Adam Morrison (3)
2007: Brandan Wright (8) and Jared Dudley (22)
2008: D.J. Augustin (9) and Alexis Ajinca (20)
2009: Gerald Henderson (12)
2011: Kemba Walker (9) and Tobias Harris (19)
2012: Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (2)
Can Greg Oden Make The Improbable Comeback?
Former No. 1 overall pick Greg Oden and his camp have been vocal about his desire to rejoin the league next season. Oden was once considered a franchise changing caliber talent entering the league from Ohio State University back in 2007 and was selected ahead of All-Star players such as Kevin Durant, Al Horford and Joakim Noah.
Oden hasn’t fulfilled the lofty hype which was bestowed upon him early, but it wasn’t because of a lack of skills. Oden has been hampered by a plethora of injuries, undergoing at least five different knee surgeries.
But there is still a feeling around the league that if Oden can get healthy he could exceed in a lesser role in a team’s rotation.
Former Ohio State standout Deshaun Thomas says he has been working out with Oden and says the center looks to be in prime condition heading into the summer.
“Man, he looks unbelievable,” Thomas said at the draft combine according to Bob Finnan of the News-Herald. “He’s running. He’s lifting weights. You might be seeing a comeback. He looks like he’s ready to go. He’s running, getting in shape. I’ll tell you one thing. For a big 7-footer that’s all he does, running and getting in shape. He’s looking right.”
Cleveland and Miami are two of the teams rumored to have the most interest in his services. The HEAT would offer an opportunity to compete for a title, but the Cavaliers may provide the best shot for more guaranteed money and a bigger role in the rotation.
Warriors’ Barnes Breaks Rookie Stereotype
It is a rarity to find a rookie contributing at a high level for a team making a strong playoff run, but Golden State’s Harrison Barnes was able to make a little history of his own before the Warriors were sent packing by San Antonio in the Western Conference Semifinals.
Barnes became the first rookie since former Spurs center David Robinson to average at least 16 points and 6 rebounds in the playoffs as a rookie (in at least ten games). Barnes posted averages of 16.1 points and 6.4 rebounds. Robinson averaged 24.3 points and 12 rebounds during the 1990 playoffs, but was San Antonio’s franchise player.
During the regular season, Barnes averaged 9.2 points and 4.1 rebounds in just 25 minutes per night. In the Warriors’ playoff run this season head coach Mark Jackson played the rookie over 38 minutes per night.
Barnes was the No. 7 overall pick of last season’s draft but there were concerns the former University of North Carolina product disappeared somewhat during big games. Barnes’ play this postseason has helped removed some of those previous labels and the future appears bright for the Warriors as a whole.
NBA Draft Combine 2013 Coverage
The NBA Draft combine is in full swing and of course the HOOPSWORLD team has it completely covered live on the ground.
Catch all of the video interviews from yesterday’s collegiate stars and next year’s NBA rookie class.
You can find HOOPSWORLD’s draft combine coverage HERE
HOOPSWORLD NBA Draft Prospect Profiles
The NBA Draft is rapidly approaching. Get up to date information on the top prospects here.
Article printed from HOOPSWORLD | Basketball News & NBA Rumors: http://www.hoopsworld.com
URL to article: http://www.hoopsworld.com/nba-am-bobcats-cant-afford-draft-day-whiff
Copyright © 2013 HOOPSWORLD | Basketball News & NBA Rumors
Part of the USA TODAY Sports Media Group.