By: Cam Kelly
This title is from the Drake song ya noobs, come on.
Well what a night am I right? The 2017 draft is over and it was a great night with a number of trades and a great draft class, it was a good start to hopefully what will be an exciting summer. I am not trying to brag or anything but my top 5 draft picks were correct in my mock draft so I might just be a genius. But here are some highlights from the draft. The highs, the lows, who won and who lost.
First off I want to hit you with an analogy. Imagine you are sitting at home and you are hungry for dinner and you have a ton of desserts: cookies, cake, and brownies and so your mom sends you to get groceries to complete your full meal for dinner you need lettuce and vegetables for a salad, and then you should probably get mashed potatoes and steak for the main course. You go to the grocery store and come back with cookies, cake, and brownies and your mom is like what is wrong with you? We already have all this stuff and you reply but these were the best things available! I swear this is how some of our minds work during the NBA draft. We think 1-60 picks should be the best 60 players taken in order, but this is not how it works you need to take what is best completes your team. For example, the Lakers did not need someone like Josh Jackson or Jayson Tatum in my opinion because they already have Ingram. Sadly, most people do not think like this while watching the draft and unfortunately neither do most GM’s.
Who won on Draft Night:
Philadelphia… Trading for the Number 1 Pick Markelle Fultz will be really worth it in the end and while The Process if far from complete it just got a whole lot closer. A core of Fultz, Embiid, Dario, and Simmons (FEDS) is the future and going to be so much fun to watch! Let us all have a moment of silence for Sam Hinkie who died for this to happen. He is the reason The Process was even possible.
Minnesota… I called 911 last night to report a robbery… what the TWolves did to the Bulls was nasty. Although Minnesota had a disappointing year last year a key ingredient to their defensive problems has just been answered with getting Jimmy Butler. Butler and Coach Thibs are reunited and with a core of Wiggins, Butler, and KAT will be another future dangerous team and hopefully make a playoff run next season. I can’t decide after LeBron dies and when the Warriors break up who will be the next rivalry in the NBA and I cannot decide if it will be Philadelphia and Minnesota or Milwaukee and Minnesota.
Sacramento… The most dysfunctional organization in the league finally made some good choices! De’Aaron Fox has all the potential to be an absolute star. Justin Jackson, although he will probably never be a star he is a nice player to have come off the bench and follow your system and get you a couple of buckets when you need it. Harry Giles is a gamble but why not? It could be worth it when he is healthy I really like all their picks and I think it could be the perfect start to a rebuild.
Lavar Ball… Lonzo is a Laker… Lavar’s master plan has been completed. Can someone buy me some BBB’s?
Joel Embiid… For the tweet of the night
Who lost on Draft Night:
Chicago… um what are they doing? Here is what is going through their minds: we need younger players… signs Dwayne Wade. We need shooting… signs Rajon Rondo. We need our picks… trades the Jordan Bell pick. Like I said earlier, Minnesota got a steal with getting Butler and just giving up their pick and LaVine. Not only did they have a bad night in the draft, but Jimmy Butler’s trainer also exposed their whole front office too with this tweet:
Boston… Jayson Tatum is a nice pick without a doubt, but any chance of them having that pick to trade for Jimmy Butler or Kristaps Porzingis or even PG is probably over. I love Danny Ainge but I really was expecting him to pull the trigger on one of the trades. Now if they just wanted Tatum alone I guess they won the draft night but in my opinion I think they wanted more. A starting 5 of IT, Avery Bradley, Gordon Hayward, Horford, and Porzingis would have absolutely closed the gap in the East.
The Perfect 5 for a pickup game of the 2017 Draft Class:
Lonzo Ball… Lonzo will push the ball in transition, will never take a selfish shot and will find the open man.
De’Aaron Fox… Fox is a competitor, he might be taking it too serious by picking up his man full court but that is someone you want to play with man.
Malik Monk… a little streaky but if he heats up, Monk is walking bucket who can score at all three levels. Monk is that dude that has no idea what the score is but knows he has 28 and you have to respect that.
Markelle Fultz… I guess it would be a good idea to have the number 1 pick on your pick up basketball team.
Jonathan Isaac… it is pick up so Isaac can just play as my big, but that is the beauty of the NBA these days is they are getting away from set positions. Isaac can be my rim protector but also has all the offense intangibles I want in a pickup game.
Players I am High On:
Markelle Fultz: absolute stud that gets Philly closer to completing the process.
Lonzo Ball- best passer in the draft that will push the ball in transition and make the Lakers better and fun to watch. Ball and Ingram are two young kids I am excited for.
Josh Jackson- fierce defender and really athletic and has a combination of Kawhi and Jimmy Butler in him.
Jonathan Isaac- a long and athletic kid that can shoot.
De’Aaron Fox- fastest player in the draft and good kid that is so likeable and will spend all offseason on his shot and show everyone why he is a star.
Dennis Smith Jr.- forgotten kid in the draft but a freakish athletic point guard.
Donovan Mitchell- possibly the best on the ball defender in the draft.
TJ Leaf- a big part of what made UCLA so good last year. That perfect white 4 in the league.
Terrance Ferguson- high flyer and a sniper, love that he already has a year of a professional league under his belt.
Caleb Swanigan- doesn’t get talked about enough but I think can be a double double machine.
Players I am NOT High On:
Lauri Markkanen- a 7-foot sniper that plays like he is 6’5. I mean really he rebounds and plays defense like he is 6’5 I do not think he will be the next Porzingis.
Frank Ntilikina- all of the mock drafts compare him to Dante Exum and although Exum is young it is taking him a little to adjust to the NBA.
Zach Collins- His skills are very raw and I did not see enough of him at Gonzaga to think he will be good in the NBA.
Luke Kennard- I love Kennard’s game but I feel like it is for the college game and I do not think it will translate to the NBA but I really hope I am wrong.
Steals of the Draft:
Dennis Smith Jr.