A few years from now a lot of people may look back at Thursday night’s draft as the day the other MJ passed away. However, I think I will always remember the evening for two other reasons: 1) David Kahn and 2) Jay Bilas.
This week’s Tuurrible Ten (or Triple T for short) will take a brief look at some of the people/things/decisions that left me scratching my head. Away we go…
10) Sacramento Kings GM Geoff Petrie passing on Ricky Rubio and taking Tyreke Evans - There is simply no way that Tyreke Evans is a better point guard prospect than Ricky Rubio. In time Evans may evolve into a quality combo guard, but he isn’t a prototypical floor general right now. Rubio is and the flashy teenager would have formed a tremendous tandem with Kevin Martin in the SacTown back court.
9) Memphis dealing Darko Milicic to the New York Knicks - GM Chris Wallace should have been able to get more than Quentin Richardson for Darko. Although I’m not sure Zach Randolph was the answer either, at least Z-Bo is good for 18 points & 10 rebounds a night. Richardson is just an injury-prone swing-man that brings little to the table other than outside shooting. While Milicic has obviously been a disappointment, he should now have a chance to really flourish in Mike D’Antoni’s high-octane offense.
8) Milwaukee drafting Brandon Jennings with the 10th pick - There is absolutely no chance that Sourpuss Scott Skiles and the flamboyantly brash Brandon Jennings will see eye to eye. None. I have a bad feeling that Jennings will be a permanent resident in Skiles’ doghouse and the kid will never get an opportunity to show his stuff.
7) Mike Dunleavy - Maybe Mike had just taken a dozen bong hits (because of Donald Sterling’s veto of the Randolph trade and the Bill Simmons beat down earlier in the day), but he just didn’t look or sound right during his interview. I mean the hue of his face was a shade that I never knew existed.
6) Tyler Hansbrough being selected by Indiana at #13 - Although Hansbrough had a very solid college career, I don’t see him being anything more than a combination of Brian Scalabrine and Matt Harpring in the NBA. Perhaps he’ll be able to give the Pacers an occasional double-double, but Larry Bird needs more than a rich man’s Mad Dog Madsen to get back to the playoffs.
5) “Boy Genius” Sam Presti trading for B.J. Mullens – Mullens had a really rough childhood so I’m a little reluctant to pile on, but come on. The guy barely played at Ohio State and he’ll likely be doing little more than talking Dungeons & Dragons at the end of the bench with fellow seven-foot stiff Robert Swift for the next couple years.
4) Presti reaching for James Harden instead of taking Rubio or Stephen Curry - A lot of so called experts praised this pick, but I think Harden has bust written all over him. At best he’s a very poor man’s Michael Redd and it’s likely that his career will more closely approximate Mo Peterson or Kareem Rush…two other left-handed long range shooters struggling to stay in the league.
3) DeJuan Blair free-falling all the way into the 2nd round - We’re now nearly ninety hours post-draft and if you listen very closely you’ll still be able to hear Greg Popovich cackling like a school girl at his good fortune. While DeJuan’s knees are definitely a concern, he possesses lottery level talent and should be a major contributor on the glass this season along side Tim Duncan. I don’t know if Blair will play for fifteen years, but I’m almost positive he’ll be averaging a double-double before he turns 25.
2) New Timberwolves GM David Kahn - Evidently, Bigger Smaller Is Better is the philosophy in Minnesota. When David Stern announced the selection of Ty Lawson with the 18th pick, I thought it was almost on par with the Chinese guy jumping out of the trunk in “The Hangover.” Even though Lawson is headed to Denver, that moment will forever be etched in my mind. Too funny. What isn’t funny though is that Kahn chose two undersized point guards (Rubio and Jonny Flynn) that he believes can effectively play together in the same back court. Frankly, Madsen winning the MVP next season is a more likely occurrence. I really don’t see Ricky ever wearing a T-Wolves uniform. Why would Rubio pay $5 million (or more) out of his own pocket to buy-out his current contract? To play in Minnesota on a horrible team with limited endorsement opportunities? It just isn’t going to happen.
1) Jay Bilas and his obsession with length - While Bilas did an admirable job providing insight about a number of low-profile draft choices, his repetitive use of the words wingspan, long and length were beyond belief. The over/under going into the draft was 40 and Bilas exceeded this total before the start of the second round. Why does Bilas deeply despise anyone or anything with short arms? What must he think of the Tyrannosaurus Rex? Does his wife Wendy have a long wingspan and if not, why not? I simply must know the answers to these questions and will be on a quest to find them…stay tuned.