No.1 Toronto Raptors Andrea Bargnani, 7’0 PF, Italy (Benetton Treviso)
The skinny: A few weeks ago, the Raptors hired Benetton Treviso general manager Maurizio Gherardini to be vice president and assistant general manager, becoming the first European to hold a senior management position with an NBA franchise. Coincidence? Maybe, but doubtful. Smart money says to trade the pick though for Toronto’s biggest need, a legitimate point guard who can pass (led the country in assists) and steal (laptops). I’m talking about Marcus Williams.
Best case scenario: Dirk Nowitzki
Worst case scenario: Nikoloz Tskitishvili
No.2 Chicago Bulls (via New York Knicks) LeMarcus Aldridge (Texas)
The skinny: On the bright side for the Knicks, at least they can’t butcher the pick if they don’t own it. The Bulls meanwhile continue to stockpile young talent and an athletic big man who can score will be a nice addition to an athletic big man who can’t score, Tyson Chandler.
Best: Jermaine O’Neal
Worst: Jerome Moiso
No.3 Charlotte Bobcats Rudy Gay (UConn)
The skinny: Michael Jordan is back in the NBA to make the Bobcats lottery pick. Let’s all hope he doesn’t pick another Kwame Brown. As great as he was as a player he’s that bad as a talent evaluator. Jordan and Isaiah Thomas should team up to create the worst team of all time. Gay makes sense here because he gives the Bobcats a scorer and has just enough intrigue and potential to make Jordan give him a chance.
Best: Vince Carter
Worst: Darius Miles
No.4 Portland Trailblazers Adam Morrison (Gonzaga)
The skinny: Dear Portland Trailblazers, if you wish to not alienate your fan base, not pass over the best proven player in the draft, and not shoot yourselves in the foot once again, then draft Morrison. If you don’t you’d be making a worse decision than watching The Ringer on DVD.
Best: Larry Bird
Worst: Luke Jackson
No.5 Atlanta Hawks Marcus Williams (UConn)
The skinny: Is Chris Paul available? Wait no that was last year. Tap, tap, no do-overs. The Hawks need a point guard badly yet it has been reported that they made a guarantee to take Duke power forward Shelden Williams. Last year’s starters at point guard for Atlanta? Royal Ivey and Tyronn Lue. Two words for the Hawks: Common sense
Best: Mark Jackson
Worst: In jail
No.6 Minnesota Timberwolves Brandon Roy (Washington)
The skinny: Lucky you T-Wolves, you’ve just drafted the ROY (Rookie of the Year). Finally, Kevin Garnett gets a scorer on the perimeter to compliment his post game. Roy may be the most complete player in the draft and is definitely ready to contribute right away.
Best: Dwyane Wade
Worst: Ron Mercer
No.7 Boston Celtics Tyrus Thomas (LSU)
The skinny: Kevin McHale, Larry Bird, and Robert Parish are not walking through the door. But Tyrus Thomas is and that may be a good thing. As Bill Simmons would say he has “tremendous upside potential.” He also has had one decent year in college and one great NCAA tournament. Aside from that, he’s an athlete who makes GM’s giggle like school girls checking out Justin Timberlake but has the substance of Kevin Federline.
Best: Dwight Howard
Worst: Stromile Swift
No.8 Houston Rockets JJ Redick (Duke)
The skinny: With Yao Ming and Tracy McGrady constantly drawing double teams, wouldn’t it make sense to draft a guy who is lights out from 3-point range. You would think so, but NBA teams overanalyze more girls looking at myspace posts.
Best: Steve Kerr
Worst: Casey Jacobson
No.9 Golden State Randy Foye (Villanova)
The skinny: With no glaring needs, the Warriors take the best player available at this point. Foye, a combo guard, will take the pressure off Baron Davis who gets injured more than Steve Urkel.
Best: Gilbert Arenas
Worst: Dajuan Wagner
No.10 Seattle Supersonics Isaiah Fox (Arizona) or Chris Rodgers (Arizona)
The skinny: If hell freezes over or the USA wins the World Cup. Unless either of those happen, the Sonics will pass on those former Wildcats and nab Shelden Williams who gives Seattle some toughness inside to go with the finesse of Nick Collison.
Best: Elton Brand
Worst: Samaki Walker