Wizards Win John Wall Sweepstakes and Mock Draft (Lottery)

With a 10.3 percent chance of winning last night’s lottery for the number one overall pick in the coming up NBA draft, the Wizards have the luxury of taking one-and-done phenom John Wall out of the University of Kentucky.

Wall joins former John Calapari players Derrick Rose and Tyreke Evans, who were both coached by Coach Cal at Memphis, as top 5 picks after the NBA mandated one year in college.

They both also won the Rookie of the Year.

Only problem is, the Wizards already have a top-tier point guard in Gilbert Arenas. The combination of Arenas and Wall could be terrifying for opposing defenses, but Wall’s biggest competition may be Arenas himself. Arenas was suspended for the remainder of last season after an episode involving guns in the locker room between him and perennial back-up PG Javaris Crittenton, who was suspended as well

The chances of the Wizards not taking Wall are slim as they will probably try to move the not-so gunshy Arenas. If they do pass him up, they’ll probably take Naismith winner Evan Turner who is a bigger more mature player that would slide in nicely into the shooting guard spot in the line-up that includes former ACC Player of the Year Josh Howard and emerging forward Andray Blatche.

Philadelphia has the second pick who also don’t really need a PG as they drafted UCLA star Jrue Holiday with their top pick in last year’s draft.

New Jersey, who had the best chance (25%) of landing the first pick, dropped t0 3 and would love to see Wall slip into their laps. With a new owner and an upcoming move to Brooklyn, Wall would probably prefer to settle in Jersey despite their league worst 12-70 this past season.

Wherever he lands, fans of that city are most certainly going to join in on “The John Wall Dance”

Despite Arenas already being in Washington, it’s hard to pass on the future All-Star and potential franchise player. This draft class has been dubbed one of the weakest in recent years, but there are definitely some real deal players at the top.

There is sure to be some big trades and roster shake-ups before the draft on June 24th. But, alas, here is my mock draft of the lottery teams based on team needs from last season and player potential.

1.Washington Wizards- John Wall PG Kentucky – He’s too good to pass up.

2. Philadelphia 76ers – Evan Turner SG Ohio State – A nice fit to the backcourt that includes Holiday, Andre Iguadala and former South Gwinnett star Lou Williams. They could use some help in the post, but Turner is the most NBA ready of all players not named Wall.

3. New Jersey Nets – Derrick Favors PF Georgia Tech – His athleticism and potential make him one of the highest touted players this year and would slide in nicely with Brook Lopez, who had a great season despite New Jersey’s abysmal season.

4. Minnesota Timberwolves – Wesley Johnson F Syracuse – Johnson’s game is much like Turner’s and would add much needed athleticism on the wing to a young core of T-Wolves that include fellow Syracuse standout Johnny Flynn, Al Jefferson, and Kevin Love.

5. Sacramento Kings – Demarcus Cousins C Kentucky – Cousins is another Kentucky one-and-done star and is an inside presence with underrated lost post moves that would add interior scoring to one of the NBA’s worst offenses.

6. Golden State Warriors – Cole Aldrich C Kansas – Long, large, and a proven winner, Aldrich brings defensive intensity to a team that gave up over 112 points per game last season. What he lacks in athleticism he makes up for by being a smart defender and an efficient scorer.

7. Detroit Pistons – Al-Farouq Aminu F Wake Forest – The Pistons spent a lot of money last season to acquire Ben Gordon and Charlie Villanueva. Needless to say, it didn’t work how they planned. Rip Hamilton and Tayshaun Prince are past their prime and they need some youth to revitalize the organization. Aminu is a former Norcross star, who beat our team by about 40 points every time we played them in high school, that has a lot of potential. Long, athletic, and smart, he has all the tools to be a great player in the league. Capable of playing both forward spots, he will benefit from coming off the bench for a couple years as he still needs time to mature. Could be the steal of this draft.

8. Los Angeles Clippers – Ekpe Udoh F/C Baylor – Udoh is another player that is still raw, but he’s athletic and a hard worker. The Clippers took Blake Griffin last year with the first overall pick, but he didn’t play a game after breaking his kneecap. Udoh would be a nice addition to the frontline of Griffin, and 2009-2010 All-star Chris Kaman.

9. Utah Jazz – Ed Davis F North Carolina – The Jazz obtain the Knicks pick from a trade 6 years ago. After a good post-season run with 2nd round picks and undrafted players the Jazz are delighted to have a top 10 pick. Davis would add length and athleticism to a team that would overmatched in the post by the Lakers after losing Okur to a achilles injury. He is raw, but he’s potential is through the roof, and any player coached by Jerry Sloan is going to get better quickly.

10. Indiana Pacers – Greg Monroe F Georgetown – Monroe is a highly skilled left-handed big man who is known for his passing ability and would be a nice compliment to probably the most underrated player in the NBA Danny Granger. Pacers need a lot more help than him though especially in the backcourt but this draft has very few formidable guards past the Wall and Turner.

11. New Orleans Hornets – Patrick Patterson F Kentucky – Although undersized, Patterson slides nicely into the Hornets rotation bringing an all around game. Hornets didn’t finish well after star PG Chris Paul went down last season but rookies Darren Collison and Marcus Thorton stepped up and added much needed backcourt depth. Patterson is a winner and will bring some class to an organization that needs an uplift.

12. Memphis Grizzlies – Daniel Orton C Kentucky – Orton joins Wall, Cousins, and Patterson as lottery picks out of Big Blue nation. Orton is still young, but his large frame and defensive mentality will be a nice backup to all-star Zach Randolph, and young centers Marc Gasol and last years 2nd overall pick Hasheem Thabeet who also had a injury shortened season.

13. Toronto Raptors – Hassan Whiteside C Marshall – With the almost certain departure of the face of the franchise Chris Bosh, who looks a lot like a raptor himself, the Raptors will be slim upfront. Whiteside is a 7 footer with a lot of potential after playing only one year at Marshall. They could also take Donatas Motiejunas with this pick, also a 7 footer, out of Lithuania, but I don’t know anything about him so I say they take Whiteside.

14. Houston Rockets – Xavier Henry G – Kansas – Rockets made a big move at the trade deadline last season by acquiring SG Kevin Martin after fallout with former star Tracey McGrady. With the return of Yao, the Rockets are looking to get back to the playoffs and Henry would provide a spark off the bench as he is capable of playing both guards spots. Martin would also be a good mentor to him as they both are not very imposing athletes that have to work to get open shots. This may be a little high for Henry, who played only one season at Kansas, but you have to have good guards to compete in the west.

I’ll post a new mock draft as trades occur and it gets closer to the draft. Let the madness begin.

-KP

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