The NBA draft combine has passed, and the draft day is getting closer and closer. Sports Illustrated has an updated look at the first-round possibilities, and it is a lot of good news for our former Wildcats. Obviously Anthony Davis remains locked in the top spot, but Michael Kidd-Gilchrist and Terrence Jones find themselves in good positions now. Take a look.
1. Anthony Davis – New Orleans Hornets
Davis will be the big man who helps the Hornets rebuild. As if we didn’t know that his ridiculous length wasn’t a major part of his package, it was formally quantified at the combine, where he measured 6-10½ in shoes with a 7-5½ wingspan. Davis will need to work on his body in his first few seasons, though, as he weighed only 222 pounds.
Anthony Davis is really good at basketball.
3. Michael Kidd-Gilchrist – Washington Wizards
The Wizards’ trade of young, maturity-challenged center JaVale McGee to Denver for veteran center Nene in March had as much to do with changing their culture as it did adding to the talent pool. In that regard, Kidd-Gilchrist would be a phenomenal fit. He was a leader of the highest order at Kentucky. His focus on defense would set the right kind of tone for a rebuilding team, and he also has the ability to get to the rim at will.
And you didn’t even mention John Wall. If Kidd-Gilchrist lands in Washington, the Wizards become of Big Blue Nation’s favorite NBA teams if they weren’t already. It seems a lot of people around the NBA are beginning to settle on MKG to the Wizards, so this is a good thing.
Michael Jordan, you love Thomas Robinson, right? He is way better than Kidd-Gilchrist, you should take him.
7. Terrence Jones – Golden State Warriors
The Terrence Jones buzz has been growing at Golden State, and he’s as likely a pick as any if the team actually holds on to it. But the win-now mode that owners have entered after trading for Andrew Bogut means they’re looking for veteran small forward help (or, according to the San Francisco Chronicle, to trade up for Kidd-Gilchrist). This Jones or the one he faced off with in a Monday workout (Perry) doesn’t appear ready to make that sort of impact right away.
It’s great that Jones has worked his way up to the top ten of the mock draft; he was down around the 15-range before. However, if Golden State really is looking for a “win-now” team, Jones may not be the answer. Still, his hard work is showing and will hopefully pay off.
20. Marquis Teague – Denver Nuggets
As good as the point guard combo of Ty Lawson and Andre Miller was for the Nuggets, Miller is a free agent and may not be back. I had Washington point guard Tony Wroten here before, but I’m told that the Nuggets have their eyes on the younger brother of Hawks point guard Jeff Teague. Marquis Teague doesn’t have the aggressive scoring mentality of Wroten, but he is a speedy floor leader who would be comfortable playing at Denver’s typically fast pace.
A lot of NBA scouts don’t seem overly impressed with Tony Wroton’s game. Teague will be able to move up some spots without even trying. He’s the fourth and final projected first-rounder from Kentucky, so we wait on Darius Miller and Doron Lamb.
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