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The New Orleans Block Party’s Friday Draft News and Draft Views


pelicans

Big Blue Nation’s NBA interest was at an all-time high for about eight minutes Thursday night when the New Orleans Pelicans selected Nerlens Noel with the sixth overall pick in the draft. The one-time projected No. 1 pick shockingly found himself outside the top five selections, but that didn’t matter anymore once the opportunity to play with Anthony Davis swooped in and saved draft night for Nerlens, and for Kentucky fans. Two Kentucky Wildcats, two of the best shot blockers to ever play college basketball, on the same team at the next level? Hell yes. Hell. Yes.

But it was too good to be true. Shortly after donning the Pelicans hat and shaking hands with the commish, Nerlens Noel was dealt to Philadelphia for Jrue Holiday. The ‘shot blocking party’ Noel spoke of in his post-draft interview, it never happened. The Pelicans didn’t even have time to print the invitations.

Coach Cal did his best to sell the possibility of Noel and Davis playing together during his interview in the green room, but management wasn’t listening. They were too busy negotiating the deal that broke the hearts of Big Blue Nation.

But we’ll always have those eight minutes. The Pelicans can’t take those away from us. That excitement we felt, it was real. Those visions of Anthony Davis and Nerlens Noel meeting each other at the rim to block a shot together, they were real. And, man, it was exciting.

New Orleans shot blocking party, we hardly even knew you. But we loved you.

Let’s talk about whatever just happened on ESPN…

After weeks of hearing the “experts” debate Alex Len and Nerlens Noel at the top spot, the Cleveland Cavaliers did exactly what no one said and drafted UNLV’s Anthony Bennett first overall. Bennett became the first Canadian born player to hear his name called first — there will be another next year — and he fills a need at power forward that Cleveland doesn’t have.

Bennett said he was just as surprised as anyone else when David Stern called his name. Dan Gilbert, y’all. Dan Gilbert.

 I think we can all agree that the look on Nerlens’ face as David Stern introduced Bennett was tough to watch:

It tugged on our heart strings a little bit.

Cleveland’s unexpected top selection was only the beginning of Nerlens Noel’s plunge from the spot once believed to be his. Orlando took Victor Oladipo with the second pick; Washington drafted Otto Porter Jr. at No. 3; and then the Charlotte Bobcats did the most Charlotte Bobcats thing ever and took Cody Zeller with both Alex Len and Nerlens Noel still on the board. Bobcats fans didn’t find it as humorous as the rest of America:

At this point you’ll have a difficult time convincing me Michael Jordan isn’t intentionally sabotaging the Bobcats organization. That is the only explanation I can come up with for drafting Cody Zeller over Noel, Len and Ben McLemore. Jordan is either doing this on purpose, or he lost a poker game to Cody Zeller’s father. Or he’s high. One of those three scenarios led to Cody Zeller going to Charlotte, maybe all of them.

 By the way, does SheridanHoops.com even bother reporting NBA news anymore? It was a rough week for the website. The report that Charlotte was trying to trade Michael Kidd-Gilchrist was refuted by everyone, so Sheridan went all-in on Thursday by saying Alex Len will go to Cleveland, barring a trade. Good luck finding that credibility any time soon, guys.

 Once we all gathered ourselves and tuned back in following the Zeller comedy, Nerlens Noel went sixth overall to New Orleans and was shipped to Philadelphia, as I wrote above. Philly then took Michael Carter-Williams with the 11th pick, pairing Noel with his former AAU teammate. Carter-Williams told Shane Battier that he and Nerlens are best friends and have always talked about one day playing in the NBA together. They never imagined playing on the same team, though.

nerlens-williams

#ThrowbackThursday

 Noel learned of the trade when a reporter told him in the interview room. He said he had no contact with the 76ers organization prior to the draft. Noel only met with Cleveland, Orlando and Washington because he didn’t expect to fall out of the top three. That could’ve hurt him with Charlotte and Phoenix, but now that it’s over with, he should be satisfied with where he ended up.

 While Philadelphia is an ideal spot for Noel, the financial hit he’ll take by slipping to sixth is going to sting a little bit. Noel will lose about $4.4 million over the first two years by going sixth instead of first, according to Darren Rovell. Ouch.

 And what about that surprise for Big Blue Nation, you ask? It was inside his jacket…

noel-jacket

Noel flashed a Kentucky jersey sewn inside his suit jacket when he finally heard his name called. It would’ve been much cooler had he gone first overall, but still cool nonetheless.

 He had to sweat it out til the very end, but Archie Goodwin is a first round draft pick. That means the 18-year-old from Arkansas is getting guaranteed money at the next level. Burrrrrrrr! Archie was drafted 29th, the second to last pick in the first round, by the Oklahoma City Thunder on behalf of  the Golden State Warriors who traded Archie to the Phoenix Suns. Phoenix was the only team he worked out for twice.

Goodwin gets a guaranteed two-year deal worth around $1.1 million in his first season.

 I watched every minute of the NBA draft coverage and still don’t have the slightest clue as to what happened through most of it. I’ll wrap up tonight’s very late night post (my apologies) with quick hitters, otherwise known as the first things that come to mind as I replay the five hours in my head. Buckle up, we’re going fast…

– Coach Cal was the only coach interviewed in the green room. #KentuckyEffect

– Indiana had two players selected in the top five but couldn’t make the Elite 8 last season. #CreanEffect

– Michael Jordan is going to be pissed when he wakes up and reads that he drafted Cody Zeller.

– How the hell did that hat stay on BeBe’s afro? And who the hell told Adidas those hats were OK?

– Did we just watch Coming To America 2?

– Hakeem Olajuwon surprising David Stern was awesome. Very cool moment for NBA fans.

– Good luck fitting Antetokounmpo (yeah, I Googled it) on the back of a Bucks jersey.

– Happy to see Shabazz Muhammad get his moment on stage, all draftees deserve it, but it was uncomfortable to watch. So awkward.

– All draft experts, gurus, specialists, analysts and mock draft writers are overpaid. Even the ones who don’t get paid anything. They’re overpaid, too.

– Fran Fraschilla doesn’t have a clue, but neither do we so he can tell us whatever he wants about the international players.

– It was a great night for the D-league.

– I do not envy whoever oversees NBA trades but I hope they get overtime pay.

– Not many people would’ve been as bad as Shane Battier at interviewing players as they came off the stage. Maybe Paula Deen, but that’s about it.

 

Good night, folks. Sleep tight. Don’t let the bed bugs bite. Watch your backside, Aaron Hernandez.

 

Article written by Drew Franklin

I can recite every line from Forrest Gump, blindfolded. Follow me on Twitter: @DrewFranklinKSR

55 responses to “The New Orleans Block Party’s Friday Draft News and Draft Views”

  1. UK

    Cleveland and Charlotte are consistently in the lottery and no one should be shocked after watching them pick tonight.

  2. Buckets

    I thought the best pick was McLemore to the Kings at No. 7. Biggest reach early was definitely Zeller at No. 4. I mean come on …

  3. Anybody

    Anybody here that crack head speak today
    at the trial? Tyrone Biggums lives!

  4. come on

    Make them pay is right Nerlens. Thanks for all you have done at UK, on and off the court. Will miss you here but will enjoy watching you succeed in the NBA and life.

  5. She can't read

    Star witness admits she can’t read.
    20-1 she’s a democrat

  6. She can't read

    20-1 i smoke meth and don’t have teeth in my mouth

  7. SeaCat

    Sad draft for the SuperCats…
    We will do better next year

  8. Chris

    Good post because I love irony. Someone that knows nothing calling out someone that knows nothing. COMEDY!

  9. Cody

    Fran knows his stuff better than anyone knows their stuff. You, on the other hand, obviously do not.

  10. Lamont

    Kentucky had two players drafted in the first round and lost to Robert Morris in the NIT

  11. Cards blow

    The player drafted #6 didn’t play when UK lost in the post-season tournament on the road i might add. Can’t wait for #REVENGETOUR

  12. Cards blow

    Furthermore we have 13 first rounders in the past 4 years and that # goes up by 6 or 7 after next year. 13 first rounders 1 NC 2 Final Fours 3 Elite eights and more to come.

  13. Chris

    I like the pick by the Bobcats. This assures them that they will be terrible next year and can then draft Andrew Wiggins and move MKG to a team who has a chance.

  14. Ridge Runner

    2 more first rounders! I love it. That Nerlens is a rascal, putting that #3 UK jersey inside his jacket. hahaha, Only Kentucky Basketball — Only here at Kentucky. Friggin’ awesome!

  15. Ridge Runner

    10, considering we lost the best one of the two way before that game was played…you are really paying us a pat on the back with that simple statement. But since you are bringing up “one” example as most jealous fans do (Ya know…look for the small amount of times the great legacy that is UK didn’t win a game we were supposed to)?? Anyway, yes, we can’t win every year but ya know what…heck, lets not look at one, two, or just a few examples as we all know that isn’t what makes a legacy. Let’s look at all time wins, all time national championships, NBA players, (Umm…do I need to go on?) Didn’t think so, hater. Move along youngin’.

  16. SeaCat

    If Poythress had of come out, would he have
    been picked above Archie?

  17. twnky

    DONT FEED THE TARDS PEOPLE!!!

  18. Mark

    17) that is right when you go back and forth with name calling but when you bust them with logic, it’s called busted.

  19. Mark

    15) good job by the way, ridge runner.

  20. PeliCANs

    i immediately started scoping NewOrleans Jerseys when the pick was made … i wanted a D.Miller for me, ADavis for my oldest and Noel for my second son … the NBS lost BIG money with that trade ! ;D

  21. Allen

    What a strange night. Draft-Trade-Trade-Draft-Trade, damn.

    16- Gee, I dunno. If a dog could climb a tree would it still be a dog? If an elephant had wings, could it fly?

  22. Allen

    Our own Twin Towers in N.O.; a dream I must of had. Crap!

  23. fancy feast

    Why is everyone so shocked about Zeller? Granted, he is both garbage and ugly. But it shouldn’t surprise anyone that he got drafted over Len, who is even more garbage and uglier still. Nerlens did get jobbed, but Zeller will be a better NBA player than Len.

  24. Bmac

    The only real losers in the draft were shabazz and Orikahi, both who’s decisions not to come to Kentuvky cost them a lot of money

  25. common sense

    Word out from the NBA GMs is that both Oladipo and Zeller blew them away in personal interviews. Plus Zeller’s 33.25 vertical leap was the best by anybody over 6’8″ in over a decade. BTW, UK was AT BEST on the NCAA bubble BEFORE Noel was injured. Go back and read KSR’s posts and comments the week before his injury. Noel’s injury, unknown recovery time, and weight of only 206 lbs. all pushed him off the top spot.

  26. DrSayre

    I heard Jordan was sold on Zeller after a stop at the Evansville CiCi’s Pizza…

  27. rabble rabble rabble

    sooooooooooooo……. are we supposed to eat dey feet yet?

  28. RahRah

    Seriously the worst NBA draft in a long time. But the live blog was fun, as always. Thanks Drew.

    Hey, don’t count our guy Randle out on #1 in next year’s draft. I’m expecting great things. Last night proved you just never know.

  29. DrSayre

    28) I agree, and I could totally be saying this only because Wiggins went to KU instead of UK, but I dont think it’s impossible that Wiggins isnt the number 1 pick…1 year ago no one would’ve believed Noel and Shabazz both wouldn’t make the top 5 and that 1 of them wouldnt be in the top 10

  30. pitino

    the #creaneffect? what about the #caleffect

    couldnt even make it to the tounrney with 4 potential first round NBA draft picks.

    And he busted again with 6 NBA PLAYERS and couldnt even make it to the final four. WHAT A JOKE

  31. AFB

    Why is no one talking about philly tanking the upcoming season to cash in on next years mega draft. They traded their only all star for a player that will not see the court (by their decision) this season and what is sure to be a very high pick (the zombie hornets 1st rounder) in the 2014 draft. So all told Philly gets a dominant rim protector and two great picks in the best draft since 03 and all they had to give up was Jrue Holiday and any chance of winning this season. Well done Philly, well done!

  32. DoDo Bird

    People forget Zeller was the unanimous #1 pick before last season at Indiana. Noel is nothing more than a shot blocker who can’t score and is currently on crutches. Len is highly overrated, we all know this. I actually thought Charlotte did a good job picking Zeller. Shane Battier did great too, but im sure BBN hates it because at one point Bilas, Battier, and Plumlee were owning the stage. When is a UK alum going to get an analyst/broadcasting job?

    Kentucky Effect? Cal had 4 1st rounders (AP and WCS) and couldnt get past the 1st round of the NIT? Are you kidding me? The 1st round of the N-I-T! That’s called undercoaching.

  33. Will

    32 – Mashburn did a nice job on ESPN

  34. KSR1080Fan

    Don’t forget the Doc Rivers vs. Bill Simmons exchange.
    (which by the way- Rivers did bailout on the Celtics and can’t get his story(s) straight.)

  35. KSR1080Fan

    and with that, #33 says “BOOM”

  36. Melvit

    #27 no, since in two years he will be broke and out of a job.

  37. Dick Pitino

    Was Siva picked?

  38. shamsky

    #32…where you from pilgrim?

  39. mike

    I actually didn’t think Shane Battier did that bad of a job.

  40. Chip On Shoulders

    I think this may be the best thing that could have happened for Noel, dropping as far as he did in the draft is going to motivate him exponentially! While I’m sad the Noel/Davis front-court will not be, Philly is a good destination for Noel, it’s a team that has potential to win now, and will likely be looking to move Bynum at some point in the near future to replace the PG they gave up for Nerlens, not to mention the possibility of adding another stud in next years draft, which will be LOADED! Wiggins, Andrew/Aaron Harrison, Randle to Philly anyone?

  41. Tebkats

    Jordan also thought Portland was right in choosing Sam Bowie. The Bobcats organization are total losers, poor MKG. Hope he gets traded out of that mess.

  42. ajh

    NOT only a lot of GM’s but fans, think Noel will be a bust even without a knee injury. That surprises me.

  43. chris gettelfinger is not walking through that door

    So if dropping to 6th cost Nerlens 4.4 million like the other post said, he could have stayed another year and made as much or more than he’ll make now, right? Assuming he stayed healthy, I’m thinking definitely more, because his offense would have improved and we already know what a shot-blocking machine he is.

  44. Rafters

    Anyone else think it was a little odd that Nerlens didn’t clap or congratulate the other players before him. Then again I am only going by what was visible during the show.

  45. chris gettelfinger is not walking through that door

    That being said, I still understand why he would go. I remember Ron Mercer seemed to be thinking about coming back for his junior year until he saw Derek Anderson blow out a knee for the 2nd time.

  46. DCS195

    32) DoDo Bird. Classy name, fits you exactly. Cal wins the NC with the 1st and 2nd NBA picks, and everyone says anyone could have coached that team. Crean can’t get past the Sweet 16 with the 2nd and 4th NBA picks and is given a pass, no one says a thing. Hate much.

  47. HAHAHA

    #creaneffect? Cal can’t make win a 1st round NIT game with a team stocked with McDonald’s All-Americans!!!

    AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH Stay obsessed with IU

  48. Jimb

    First round NIT loss with one of the greatest recruiting classes of all time? Good look coach cal.

  49. Mass Confusion

    43. It’s doubtful Nerlens would be drafted any higher in next years loaded draft

  50. Chas

    I’m pretty sure I’ve never posted on an IU fansite….and who’s obsessed? KSR is where I get all the news on MY team…why aren’t IU fans doing the same thing on their own site?

  51. theSkinny81

    46 – +100

  52. haeving problm Chas?

    because it’s fun to post here. always guaranteed replies filled with butt anguish.

  53. Chas

    Nope, not “haeving” a problem at all.

  54. Judy

    Layoff Paula Deen ass wipe, you aren’t all that great yourself judging by your writing skills.

  55. oh Chas