Relax. Clear you mind. Think good thoughts. Forget about the football game for a minute. Look forward to the joyous times of Wildcat hoops in Rupp Arena. The college basketball season hasn’t even started yet, Big Blue Madness is still a couple of weeks away, but that’s not going to stop me from trying to brighten your day.
It also hasn’t stopped a couple of media outlets from releasing their 2013 NBA Draft projections. This one from SheridanHoops.com of former ESPN NBA writer Chris Sheridan. The writer Joe Kotoch contributes from ProBasketballDraft.com. He says three Kentucky Wildcats will go in the top ten.
1. Shabazz Muhammad — Freshman (UCLA)
2. Cody Zeller — Sophomore (Indiana)
3. Nerlens Noel — Freshman (Kentucky)
Looking at Noel on the surface, he will conjure up comparisons to Anthony Davis, who he will replace this year for Kentucky … The biggest difference between Noel and Davis is that Noel lacks Davis’ perimeter skills that made him so special. To his credit, Noel is a better straight up shot-blocker, whereas Davis excelled at the weakside block.
4. James McAdoo — Sophomore (North Carolina)
5. Rudy Gobert — International (France)
6. Alex Poythress — Freshman (Kentucky)
Poythress is listed as a SF, but has the size, strength, and athleticism to project as a combo forward in the mold of a Marcus Morris or Terrence Jones. Versatility is one of Poythress’ best attributes as he can defend multiple positions, rebound, finish in traffic or step out and face up. He and Noel are two of John Calipari’s most prized recruits.
7. Isaiah Austin — Freshman (Baylor)
8. Tony Mitchell — Sophomore (North Texas)
9. Archie Goodwin — Freshman (Kentucky)
Not too many shooting guards have a 6’10” wingspan, but Goodwin is not your typical guard. [He] can score anywhere on the court and is a dynamic ball-handler. Goodwin’s instincts are very advanced and don’t be surprised to see him lead the Wildcats in scoring this season.
10. Adonis Thomas — Sophomore (Memphis)
This mock draft doesn’t go any farther, but others have Willie Cauley-Stein and Ryan Harrow up near the lottery, which would once again put Kentucky in the running for NBA Draft records.
What may be even more interesting is the class is loaded with young names. No juniors or seniors in the top ten. Continuing with the current trend of one-and-done’s, John Calipari and the Wildcats will no doubt be well represented at the NBA Draft once again.