In previous years, the #10 pick has generally been a solid producer. I 1987, Chicago got Horace Grant, a key part for their first three championships. In 1995, Miami selected Kurt Thomas, who has been a “serviceable journeyman.” In 1998, Boston got Paul Pierce at #10. In 2008, New Jersey nailed Brook Lopez. In 2009, Milwaukee snatched Brandon Jennings. In 2010, Indiana picked Paul George, an up and coming star. However, the jury is still out on the last two #10 picks (2011 – Jimmer Fredette – Sacramento, 2012 – Austin Rivers – New Orleans).
The 2013 NBA Draft is in three days, and the Blazers have the #10 pick. What do they do?
While most sites don’t have the Blazers trading the pick, it is a possibility, that I personally find unlikely. Using the pick would not be using it based on team needs, but on the best available player. Neil Olshey has been adamant about that. That being said, who could realistically be available for Portland at #10? I’m here to take a look at the prospects (note – all the mock drafts and player overviews I used can be found at the bottom of the article).
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (Georgia, SG, 6 ft 5 in, 205 lbs) – Caldwell-Pope is an offensive-minded guard who can score in bunches when put in the right system. Many teams believe Portland will pick him to add depth for a playoff push.
Steven Adams (Pittsburgh, C, 7 ft, 255 lbs) – While Adams may not put up numbers many fans want when making mock drafts, he can provide defense and rebounding, both of which Portland is looking for. At the 2013 NBA Draft Combine in Chicago, he shot well and showed some skills that were not displayed while he was playing for Pittsburgh. Some people may say that he resembles Meyers Leonard, which he somewhat does. He still needs to develop his game a bit, but apparently is ready to make an impact in his rookie year.
C.J. McCollum (LeHigh, PG-SG, 6 ft 3 in, 190 lbs) – McCollum can pass, score, and he doesn’t turn the ball over. He’s a potential Damian Lillard 2.0 in my eyes. Having a three guard lineup with Lillard, McCollum, and Matthews can be lethal in terms of offensive fire-power. Add that up with Nicolas Batum, LaMarcus Aldridge, and whoever Olshey can get at center, and Portland could be back in business. More often then not, McCollum would be used as a sixth man, which is definitely needed, seeing that Meyers Leonard led the bench in scoring last season (5.5 points per game).
Cody Zeller (Indiana, PF-C, 7 ft, 230 lbs) – While he is athletic and can score in a variety of ways on the post, Zeller has been knocked for his seemingly one-dimensional game, notably following Indiana’s NCAA March Madness Tournament exit to Syracuse. He does have an impressive standing vertical height of 35.5 inches, which definitely goes in his favor.
Michael Carter-Williams (Syracuse, PG, 6 ft 6 in, 184 lbs) – Carter-Williams can shoot very well, and has added the NBA 3-point range to his offensive arsenal. He is also good in transition on the offensive end. He is also a very good defender, using his speed, quickness, and length to defend the opponent. However, he is knocked for his strength and lack of consistent shooting. One mock draft had him being as good as Penny Hardaway, but as bad as Shaun Livingston.
My sources and consulted mock drafts are down below:
- NBA Consensus Mock Draft (as of June 24) – http://www.nba.com/news/2013-consensus-mock-draft/index.html
- NBA.com – Scott Howard-Cooper (as of June 20) – http://www.nba.com/2013/news/features/scott_howard_cooper/06/20/2013-nba-draft-third-mock-draft-howard-cooper/index.html
- SI.com – Chris Mannix (as of June 25) – http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/nba-draft/news/20130625/nba-mock-draft-2013-ben-mclemore-nerlens-noel/index.html
- Sheridan Hoops – Joe Kotoch (as of June 21) – http://www.sheridanhoops.com/2013/06/21/mock-draft-6-0-cavs-love-len-and-can-get-shawn-marion/2/
- NBA Draft Insider (as of June 17) – http://www.nbadraftinsider.com/2013-big-board/2013-nba-mock-draft/
- Bleacher Report – Jonathan Wasserman (as of June 24) – http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1678508-nba-mock-draft-2013-full-round-1-and-2-predictions/page/11
- Rotoworld – Steve Alexander (as of June 13) – http://www.rotoworld.com/articles/nba/43469/34/draft-preview
- NBA.com – David Aldridge (as of June 24) – http://www.nba.com/2013/news/features/david_aldridge/06/24/david-aldridge-mock-draft-2013/index.html?ls=iref:nbahpt13a
- Comcast SportsNet NorthWest – http://www.csnnw.com/blog/blazers-talk/lucky-number-ten-portland-trail-blazers
If there are any updates to any of these sources, be sure to check back here. If you need to be notified, like my Facebook page Blazers World or follow me on Twitter @BlazersBySagar.
I personally feel as if taking a guard would be the best idea for Portland. I feel as if the guard could be used as a back-up to Wesley Matthews at shooting guard. As for who we could possible take? Any one of the guards listed above would be great. From what I’ve seen and heard, all three guards are great, and I personally would be happy with any one of them. I don’t want a center just because it would seem like giving up way too early on Meyers Leonard. In fact, Steven Adams has been called Meyers Leonard 2.0. I don’t see the point in drafting nearly the exact same players two years in a row.
That being said, I’ll repeat what I wrote earlier: Olshey plans to draft the best available player. While it’s highly unlikely, all of these players could be gone by #10. Maybe none of them are off the board.
Who do you guys think Portland will take? Who do you WANT Portland to take? Let me know in the comments below!
Until next time,