Tag Archives: Draft

On the Harrison Barnes Bandwagon

I’ve been watching a ton of college hoops lately trying to gauge teams for my brackets that will most likely be busted by the Sweet 16, since I always over think the picks and switch them to the wrong ones. Last night I even went to the Pac-10 tournament to watch the semi finals. It was my first chance to see Arizona’s Derrick Williams in person, and I have to say, I left Staples Center impressed about his abilities as a pro. Williams was the best player on the court out of the two games. He has all the tools you want in a scorer that thrives on attacking the rim. He made a few nice moves but one on the baseline had him finishing on the opposite side of the rim that he took off from was his biggest highlight. I think that move made me a believer that he truly is pro material based off hang time and body control alone!

Barnes is always cooler than the other side of the pillow.

Anyways, over the last two or three weeks one player stands alone in the must watch category, and that player would be Harrison Barnes. He put on a hell of a performance today going for 40 points and hitting 6 3-pointers against Clemson in an overtime win. He seems to have everything you’d want in a player. Great jumper, can handle the ball, passes when he isn’t open, can finish in traffic, hits his free throws, shoots a high FG%, and also plays some solid defense. At the beginning of the season everyone was ripping Barnes for not living up to the hype of his All-American status. What did he do to change those naysayers opinions? He decided to work hard and get better (isn’t that something you always want from a player?). A lot of guys just like the games, but the good ones like practice just as much, and this guy is addicted to getting better. Very good sign for a 19 year old. I know I thought Evan Turner was going to be a stud in the pros after his solid season at Ohio State last year, but there’s something a lot different this time around as in, I’m sure Barnes will make it, because he’s a different breed. His demeanor never changes whether a call is for or against him, whether he’s made four shots in a row or missed four shots in a row. Short term memory is a gift not a skill. He’s as clutch a player as you’ll find in college hoops right now. When I watch him, I feel like he’s a shorter version of Kevin Durant, and has been more clutch in the hitting game tying or game winning shots to boot. Everyone talks about how this is a weak draft class, but the same was said about the 2009 draft that had Griffin, Curry, Evans, Derozan, Jennings, Lawson, Holiday, and Collison which have all seemed to turn out good so far. Since we have the blog, I figured I may as well state right now that I think Barnes going to be great on the next level, and am crossing my fingers to have him on the Warriors. Cmon W’s start tanking the season, so we can get some more ping pong balls!

NBA Mock Draft Part II

So, MCeezy did a NBA mock draft right after the ping pong balls fell into place a month ago. He may have been less than impressed with the results for our beloved Kings and Warriors since we unsurprisingly fell spots instead of moved up, so we needed to put up another one after cooler heads prevailed. We traded off picks for this mock draft 2.0, and here’s what we came up with.

#1 Washington Wizards – John Wall, SG, Kentucky – No surprise here. Washington isn’t even trying to create any suspense with this pick. Check out Bullets Forever…. it’s like he’s a member of the team already. Not sure how he’ll fit with Arenas, but something tells me Washington management is saying, “Gilbert who?”

#2 Philadelphia 76ers – Derrick Favors, PF, Georgia Tech – Philly passes on Turner, mainly because they couldn’t find anyone to trade out of the spot. If they take Turner they pretty much have to trade him or AI. Not sure which they’d rather have, so they take Favors as the safer more sane big man on the board. He put up numbers with nobody around him, so we will see if he can do the same with nobody around him in the NBA.

#3 New Jersey Nets – Evan Turner, SG, Ohio State – If Chappy, er, the Sixers, decide to go with Favors, then Turner at the third spot is a no brainer. New Jersey is set at the PG and C spot, a luxury most teams would love to have, but they’re still in need of help. They dealt Chris Douglas-Roberts, who was looking like their third best player, for pennies on the dollar, so that leaves a sizeable gap out on the wing. (Sizeable Gap = not to be confused with Yi Jianlian)

#4 Minnesota Timberwolves – Wesley Johnson, SF, Syracuse – Honestly he doesn’t really excite me. I’ve had a few people tell me he’s going to be a great pro, but still find that hard to grasp. Sure he’s an NBA style athlete, but does that really make him worth the number four pick? I say yes, only because I’m channeling my inner David Kahn.

#5 Sacramento Kings – Greg Monroe, PF, Georgetown – Now that Yahoo is reporting it, everyone expects the Kings to go with Cousins at the fifth spot. But the Maloofs would never show their cards before the flop. As much of an upside as Cousins has, I still think Jason Thompson is the power forward of the future in Sacramento. Memories of Vlade Divac and Brad Miller dropping backdoor dimes are too much to ignore to pass up a guy like Monroe. Plus I predicted it in my knee-jerk mock back in May. I know they just got Dalembert, but the Lakers were dominating the boards with Gasol, Bynum, and Odom. Three bigs is the way to go these days.

#6 Golden State Warriors – Demarcus Cousins, PF, Kentucky – If he’s not in shape, he will surely get into shape soon running with the dubs. Needing size is an understatement for them, and if he’s available at six, why not take the 280 pound big man that probably only fell because he’s a headcase. I think the Warriors know plenty about having headcases on their teams (SJax). There is the possibility they might even trade the pick to save a few bucks like they did with their 2nd round pick ($2M in the bank for Cohan). I remember a guy named Charles Barkley that was overweight coming into the league, and he turned out pretty good!

#7 Detroit Pistons – Hassan Whiteside, C, Marshall – Let’s face it, the Pistons are not known for their drafting. Darko Milicic will forever be the Sam Bowie pick of the franchise… and last year’s selection of Austin Daye isn’t doing much to help their case. I know Detroit seems sold on Ed Davis, but I can’t help but think they’ll blow their load on Whiteside to hold down the paint. They’ve got plenty of perimeter scoring, so it seems inevitable they’ll look for a big man here.

#8 Los Angele Clippers – Al-Farouq Aminu, SF, Wake Forrest – The Clippers seem pretty set at most positions, but they do have a hole at the SF spot. I guess picking Aminu means they won’t be going after Lebron, since they now have their newest franchise player.

#9 Utah Jazz – Epke Udoh, PF, Baylor – It’s no secret Utah is looking for a replacement for Boozer, who probably has his Salt Lake home on the market – if it isn’t sold already. Though they have Paul Millsap in tow, Epke Udoh seems too hard to pass up here. What they really need to find is a replacement for Kyle Korver – if they intend to let him walk.

#10 Indiana Pacers – Ed Davis, PF, North Carolina – Lots of potential with Davis. If there was a PG out there that was worth a pick this high, they probably would’ve taken him, but they have so many needs they may as well beef up since Murphy and Hibbert aren’t going to dominate the paint anytime ever.

#11 New Orleans Hornets – Paul George, SF, Fresno State – A lot of “credible sources” have George going to the Clippers. But, now that they’ve passed him up for Aminu, New Orleans has one glaring need, and that’s a slasher out on the wing. Whether or not Paul gets traded, they have plenty of capable PGs. Add to that Okafor, West, and Stojakovic, and there’s only one clear spot to fill.

#12 Memphis Grizzlies – Luke Babbit, SF, Nevada – The Grizz need some scoring. I’m not sure Babbit is the answer, since Hayward and Bradley are still on the board, but Luke has improved a ton over his two years in college. I don’t see why his work ethic wouldn’t translate into success in the NBA, so why not pair him with OJ on the wing.

#13 Toronto Raptors – Cole Alrich, C, Kansas – Aldrich is the guy nobody seeks, but can’t pass up. With Bosh’s departure a foregone conclusion, Toronto will need to get bigger down low. Since “Big Country” has already been taken, the Raptors will call on “Big Plain” out of Kansas to be their cornerstone down low.

#14 Houston Rockets – Gordon Hayward, SF, ButlerAs By wrote, he could be the steal of the draft. I honestly don’t see him making quite as big of an impact, but still think he should be a solid player. I see him more as a JJ Reddick type, that comes off the bench to launch a few threes. It will be nice for Brooks to have someone to pass to other than Ariza.

Crack a Bud Light and Light Up a Stogie

Our fearless, and sometimes heavily buzzed coach, Don Nelson, got his all-time wins record today. He surpassed Lenny Wilkens for all-time wins as a head coach in the NBA with 1,333 victories. You can guarantee that Nellie is going to party like it’s the 70’s(that’s when he started), break out a Hawaiian shirt, crack a Bud Light, and light up his victory stogie. This was the last noteworthy milestone that the dubs will probably make this season, unless Curry snatches that ROY award away from Tyreke (27 points, 14 assists, eight rebounds and seven steals tonight btw). Or maybe if they hit the lotto in the draft. That’s not what this post is about though.

I wanted to thank Nellie for his couple stints with the Warriors. If it wasn’t for him, we’d probably have zero playoff appearances in the last two decades. He might not be the most celebrated coach of all time, because he never had the “superstar” that could win it all with him. I’m still happy for him though, and even happier that he got the record this year instead of having it loom over the whole off-season. It will be interesting to see if the W’s keep him around. I guess it all depends on how the hunt for a new owner goes. My heart says that I should want him to stay, but maybe his time is up in the Bay Area. I doubt the next owner will let do whatever he wants like the current management does. I’d go as far to say that a new owner would make him play guys like Randolph 30 minutes a game just to see what he’s got in the mental department. We know we have a lot of talented players, but can any of them develop or stay healthy? From what I’ve observed, it might be hard for them to learn under Nellie, and his always infamous doghouse.

One other problem I have with all this winning (4 of their last 6), is that we are beating all the teams that we are trying to take ping pong balls from! At this rate we’re going to end up with the 7th or 8th pick. Didn’t they hear the word? Wall, Cousins, Favors, and Turner have declared for the draft? Tank the rest of the year boys, we NEED a top four pick! Hopefully Nellie will kick back now, and we can tank the rest of the season in style.

Doin Work’s 2009 NBA Fantasy Mock Draft

nbadraftIt’s hard to not get fired up about the basketball season by doing a mock draft! The NBA kind of sucks in some ways because if you are unfortunate and a few of your top two picks get injured your team is already pretty much done for the season. It’s weird how there are the top 35 guys in the league that help your fantasy team win, and the rest of your team is filled with streaky guys that can impress or disappoint you nightly. We did the first three rounds in a 12 team league, bookmark it if you need to for your draft!

#1 – Odom’s Shoulder Vein – Lebron James, Cleveland

Its Lebron enough said…..Last year however I took Chris Paul at #1 over Lebron and was able to run away with a league title. So, there is a possible consideration with not going with the King here. That thought is fleeting though, Lebron is easily the most multi-cat producer in the game, and will only get better and more dominating, and he is simply too good to pass up under any circumstance.

#2 – Hard on for Rajon – Kobe “Doin Work” Bryant, Los Angeles

He is the best guard in the league, he’s still in his prime, and they’ve added one of the best defenders in the league to help take a bit of pressure of him in Artest.  Let’s not forget Ariza wasn’t more than a role player still at mid-season before he started to get more minutes with Walton injured.  Kobe will get his shots and be fresher in the 4th qtr this year.

# 3 – Oden Retirement Home – Chris Paul, New Orleans

Chris Paul CP3 Dwight Howard Superman

CP3 over Superman

In 2007, I took Chris Paul with the 8th pick overall.  It was a great pick and he led me to an 8th place finish.  This time, getting him up at #3 means better picks to surround him with championship talent. Or does it?  Even though I missed the playoffs last year, this yahoo snaking order isn’t helping me get competitive!

#4 Walker Texas Granger – Danny Granger, Indiana Pacers

He may not be a superstar in the NBA like the guys picked around him, but he is a fantasy stud. He fills up the stat sheets, and I named my team after him, so I had no choice but to pick him! He killed me last year every time I was against the team that had him, and my strategy is to pick those guys this year.

#5 Cross Over Kings – Dwayne Wade, Miami

Extremely happy Dwyane Wade was available here at 5. I think a case can be made that is a top three player, and with his huge scoring ability I would consider drafting him ahead of Chris Paul. Health concerns the last several years have been an issue you can’t ignore with Wade, however last years strong season should temper some of those larger concerns. No reason not to consider Wade a corner stone player with your squad come draft day.

# 6 – Nelly’s Belly – Kevin Durant, Seattle

At least we briefly saw KD in a Sonic jersey

At least we briefly saw KD in a Sonic jersey

That’s not a typo.  Much like I refuse to call South Florida USF, I choose not to acknowledge that there is an NBA team in Oklahoma City and not Seattle.  Anyway, Durant has proved he can do more than just score, and he’s the Yahoo cover boy! He has to have a big year right?

#7 – Pippen Ain’t Easy – Dwight Howard, Orlando

Superman, nuff said.  Would like to see that FT % finally go up, lot’s of hype last year and only a small increase.  Losing Hedu can’t hurt him too much, especially with Nelson coming back healthy.

#8 –  Who’s the Bosh? – Dirk Nowitzski

I can’t lie, the clock was running down on my turn, and I figured I may as well start my team off with a the top white guy on the board who plays nearly every game every season, and is consistent. I almost picked my boy Bosh, but I’ve always believed that picking your favorite player will jinx your team ,so I’m staying away from my Canadian brethren.

#9 – Artest Dog Kennel Co. – Pau Gasol, Los Angeles

Yikes where did all of the players I have targeted go? Crap, literally every player I wanted (some I had no chance to grab at 9) went flying off the board in round one. I had to quickly scramble for a player I want that would deserve a top 9 pick…..With only a few seconds left to spare I took a leap of faith on Pau Gasol. 20 & 10 a night at PF is not a bad building block for your team I guess, however Gasol lacks that buzz you might want from your first pick. Pau is a totally different type of player I’m use to building around so early out of the gates.

# 10 – Sovinet Union – Chris Bosh, Toronto

If we were drafting haircuts, I wouldn’t take Bosh in the first round.  But, when it comes to ball, I’m a fan of lanky guys, and he fits the mold.  Plus, he’s in a contract year, and although he seems to have a good relationship with Toronto, I’m sure he wouldn’t mind being courted by a few large market American teams.

#11 – Be All You Camby – Al Jefferson, Minnesota

Al Jefferson dunk MinnesotaTalk about a team built around one player.  It’s like Big Al and a bunch of speedy guards and forwards (except Kevin Love of course).  And they are all mediocre at this point in their careers.  The Twolves will struggle, but Big Al will get his.  Let’s put it this way, the active backups at C currently listed on the roster are Ryan Hollins and Jared Reiner.  Exactly.

#12 – Baby Curry – Deron Williams, Utah

With an injury plagued start to his season last year, I look for Deron to have a big bounce back fantasy season. It’s not like he didn’t show that he wasn’t healthy last year as he averaged 11.5 assists after the All-Star break, and looked like a top fantasy player for a month or so. I didn’t hesitate to pick him with the last pick in the final round.


#13 – Baby Curry – Amare Stoudamire, Phoenix

The Suns can only hope!

The Suns can only hope!

Goggle boy should fit nicely with Deron, as I now have a solid base for nearly every category. I see Stoudamire having a great year under Gentry, and without Shaq he is the unquestioned low post option everytime down the floor. He once again has something to prove so I’m betting he steps it up a notch! Rumor has it he’s even been working on his defense.

#14 – Be All You Camby – Tim “TIMMAY” Duncan

I won’t lie, I just went with a huge line up drafting Tiny Tim and Big Al back-to-back.  Timmy might have lost half a step, but we know him as the Big Fundamental for a reason: he’s always textbook in every move he makes.  And he’s one of the strongest two-way players in the game at his size.

# 15 – Sovinet Union – Brandon Roy, Portland

I don’t have any fancy numbers or theory on this pick.  I was just simply taking the best player on the board.  He may not put up all-around numbers, but I’d sure rather check his box scores than JR Rider, who was my other choice at this spot.

#16 – Artest Dog Kennel Co. – Chauncey Billups, Dever

With my rebounds and pts locked up early, my attention quickly turns to grabbing a top flight PG before they all disappear. I’ve always marveled at the consistency of Billups and the fantastic stat line he puts up each night….This was an easy pick for me.

#17 – Who’s the Bosh? – Gilbert Arenas, Washington

Does Gilbert have any game winners this year?

Does Gilbert have any game winners this year?

I can’t say that this isn’t a reach, but there is a ton of upside here. I hope he’s back to dominant form. I somehow feel like I could get him later, but why wait for something that feels so right. He could be the NBA and fantasy comeback player of the year, so I’ll roll the dice. I usually lose leagues anyways, so I may as well try out a new strategy.

#18 – Pippen Ain’t Easy – Carmelo Anthony, Denver

I can’t tell if this is a gamble or an insult to Melo, being drafted 18th after the likes of Roy, his teammate Billups, and Arenas who has been bed ridden for the past 3 years.  Melo is such a moody player, it’s ridiculous.  I can only pray his in whatever mood it takes to put up his potential more often than not.  He’s 30-10 followed by 15-5, but he is becoming a slightly more consistent at least.

# 19 – Nelly’s Belly – Derrick Rose, Chicago

Maybe I’m reaching here, but I’m probably still thinking about Game 1 of the Bulls – Celtics series last postseason.  I know he didn’t live up to that game for the remainder of the season, but he ended up averaging 20, 6, and 6 for the series.  If that’s where he’s leaving off, I can’t wait to see how he progresses in his second NBA season.

#20 – Cross Over Kings – Steve Nash, Phoenix

Point guards, point guards, point guards…..Did I say point guards? Teams that win fantasy basketball titles are rich with talent at the PG position, and if the opportunity presents itself in the early rounds I’ll be drafting the best player at this position every time. This is a keeper league we’re drafting for, so I didn’t think twice about snatching up Steve Nash here, and team him up with D-Wade. I love the nightly production I can expect from these two, but now will be turning my attention to boards, and three pts with future draft picks.

#21 – Walker Texas Granger – Devin Harris, New Jersey

With Vince gone, I think Harris will have to assert himself all season long, and that’s going to be good news for fantasy owners. Although he usually gets injured at one point in the season, he was probably my steal of the draft last year, so I’m thanking him by taking him here.

# 22 – Oden Retirement Home –  Joe Johnson, Atlanta

Joe Johnson Hawks jump shotJoe Johnson is like that girl who looks pretty good most of the time, but isn’t quite gorgeous.  But, every once in a while she’ll look smokin and she’ll, I mean he’ll put up a triple double and you fall in love.  We’ve had an on and off relationship in fantasy hoops over the last few years, but with Atlanta emerging as a playoff threat and rounding into their prime, I’m ready to commit to Joe.  Flanked by Josh Smith, Bibby, and Jamal Crawford, I think he’ll be at the center of that offense dishing out plenty of dimes to go with his strong scoring numbers.

#23 – Hard on for Rajon – David West, New Orleans

David West can thank two guys for making his job pretty damn easy: the unbelievable CP3, and Peja when he’s healthy.  We already know about CP3, he’s the best PG in the league.  But Peja takes a lot of bodies out to the perimeter to get a hand in his face, opening up the post for the talented West to operate.  Lots of chances for Off Rebs and he’s solid on D as well.  Nice balance to first pick Kobe.

#24 – Odom’s Shoulder Vein – Jose Calderon, Toronto

Waiting an entire two rounds to draft again is a steep price to pay for having the number pick, however I find in basketball rounds three and four are still rich in talent. Top tier point guards disappear quickly in the first three rounds and had to make my move here to pick one up. I was excited to see Calderon available and didn’t give anybody else serious thought. He seems like an ideal PG to team up with Lebron…Assists, steals, FG%, Pts, 3pts are already in good hands two picks in.

#25 – Odom’s Shoulder Vein – Gerald Wallace, Charlotte

Gerald Wallace BobcatsNot sure about this pick after I made it….In retrospect I think Vince Carter was the better value. It’s not like Wallace is a bad player or won’t even put up very similar numbers…but if I can the player that is on a much better team (ie Orlando) with less health concerns that’s usually the better move. In terms of over all production, I’m extremely happy with my first three picks.

#26 – Hard on for Rajon – Andre Igoudala, Philadelphia

The other AI is in for an even bigger season with the loss of veteran PG Andre Miller.  Besides, with so many Andre’s on the court it was getting confusing.  It looks as though Iguodala will be starting with Lou Williams at the point and Thaddeus Young at the 3, so there will be plenty of opportunity to score in this offense.  We all know his athletic ability alone is pretty special.

# 27 – Oden Retirement Home – Shawn Marion, Dallas

I’m not a Shawn Marion fan by any stretch of the imagination.  Once he left Phoenix, his fantasy value has deteriorated.  However, I feel like this is the year the Mavericks either make one last push, or blow it up completely.  If it’s the former, it’ll be because Marion is enjoying a comeback season pertaining to his fantasy relevance.

#28 – Walker Texas Granger– Kevin Garnett, Boston

This pick is a risky one, since Garnett’s production has been falling off faster than Raiders ticket sales, but hopefully he’ll be rejuvenated after getting the last couple months of last season off. I have little doubt that when he’s in there he’ll produce, the question is will he be in there?

#29 – Cross Over Kings – Antawn Jamison, Washington

Antawn Jamison WizardsHere in the third round I was looking for an all-around producer from either the SF or PF position. If I can find a scorer who boards, and can knock down some threes as well, I feel like this would be an ideal addition. Paul Piece was a serious candidate, but I was hoping to get a few more rebounds, which made Jamison the most viable player to go with. His average of 8+ boards a night to go along with 20 pts, and a few threes seem like a good fit. I would argue Jamison is one of the most under valued players in the league when it comes to fantasy players….

#30 – Nelly’s Belly – Josh Smith, Atlanta

The Josh Smith saga continues.  I jumped on the bandwagon early, and by the time he hit his fantasy peak, he was in someone else’s hands.  In his third run on my team in 5 years last season, he had a disappointing campaign.  This year, I’m hoping to pair him with Anthony Randolph in a later round and have the scariest fantasy team ever on paper!

#31 – Pippen Ain’t Easy – Rashard Lewis, Orlando

I guess I’m all in on the Magic offense after the loss of Hedu in the off-season.  Long-range Lewis and Superman will get a few more touches, and a healthy Jameer Nelson will give them great opportunities to excel.

#32 – Who’s the Bosh? – Rajon Rondo, Boston

Woohoo, hi-five!

Woohoo, hi-five!

I guess I might need a backup plan at PG in case Gilbert goes down, and Rondo is a dishing machine that should only get better with age! I’m not sure if he’s an alien or not, but it’s good to have another Sam Cassell looking guy in the league.

#33 – Artest Dog Kennel Co. – Vince Carter, Orlando

Wow….Vince Carter sitting here so late is a nice gift if you ask me. And it’s these types of players you draft in rounds 3, 4, and 5 that can net you a fantasy title. With Carter playing for a winning Orlando team full of talent, I think it’s reasonable to think he has a decent chance to put up top 15 type numbers this season. I feel great about having top players at PG, PF, and SF….Carter does carry some health risks, but those fears seem to only come up when he is playing for bad teams!

# 34 – Sovinet Union – Paul Pierce, Boston

The Celtics took a year off to celebrate, and this season should be the last chance for Pierce, Garnett, and Allen to get one more ring.  Since KG and Ray both have the durability of a pine cone, Paul Pierce is going to have to hold down the fort through much of the regular season.

#35 – Be All You Camby – Jason Kidd

After taking two big men, I’m delighted to see two great PGs left to choose from: Kidd and Tony Parker.  I’m going with Kidd only because he outs up better assist numbers and more 3 pointers.  The Dallas offense looks filthy with a healthy Josh Howard, Dirk and Terry, plus new addition Shawn Marion keeping plays alive and providing a bit of energy.

#36 – Baby Curry – Monta Ellis, Golden State

The Warriors camp has been the most active, and not in a good way. I hate to pick the guy that told my mancrush that he couldn’t play with him, but he should be primed for a big season whether or not they end up being competitive. Anyone guaranteed starters minutes on the dubs should be a good pick!

Strasberg’s Contract Shows a Great Need to Re-do the MLB Draft

Steven Strasberg

Matt explored the contract negotiating holdout of Michael Crabtree, and Monday is the deadline for Steven Strasburg, the Washington Nationals number one overall pick in the MLB draft to sign. Strasberg has yet to reach an agreement with the Washington Nationals. It doesn’t sound like a deal will get done by Monday’s deadline as the Boras and the Nationals have put different values on Strasburg. I’m not a Nationals fan by any means, so I kind of hope they don’t sign him. It could be the first time ever that a team has failed to sign their first round pick two years in a row!moneybaby I’m not a supporter of making a team pay $50 million for a player that hasn’t thrown one pitch at the major league level. I feel that their $30 million offer was more than fair, and probably too much. Regardless of what happens it shows that baseball needs to fix the way the outdated drafting and signing system is working.

Just like the NFL there are a lot of holdouts in baseball. I understand that players are just trying to get paid what their agents and others surrounding them feel they are worth, but what happened to proving your worth!?! Baseball needs to restructure signings, and put caps on contracts for the players that haven’t played one inning in the minors or majors. Putting parameters on guaranteed money and bonuses that the top choices can receive would make them like all of the other major sports, what a concept! They also need to make other ways for teams to avoid having to pay huge dollars for those top picks, like say, let a team trade picks!?! Wow, how hard is that. Baseball is the only sport that doesn’t allow the trading of draft picks. In this case, the Nationals could have traded their pick away to a team with money and willingness to sign Strasberg. I’m sure he would already be signed, and the Nationals could have had a couple of picks and could’ve signed a four or five players with money Strasberg is demanding.

Do you wonder why I’m so against Strasberg’s contract? Take a guy like Ryan Howard of the Phillies, who has already been rookie of the year, MVP, an All-Star, and a two time home run champ.Ryan Howard He won his bid for the highest arbitration awarded in the history of baseball for $10 million just last year. With the conclusion of this season Howard will have made a total of about $26 million in his three year career since being drafted, which sounds reasonable for one of the best young hitters in the game. Since Howard was a 5th round pick he probably was paid the right amount, but Strasberg would be making twice as much as him at the same point in his career if the contract that he’s asking for goes through. Is any player that hasn’t played worth $50 million? Can he really be as dominant as the money he’s due to recieve?  Can any team justify really give any rookie that much money!?! Definitely not! Over the past 40 years there has been 14 pitcher taken #1 overall, and they have a combined zero Cy Youngs, zero 20 win season, and zero 200 career wins.

So how would being able to trade draft picks help? Well it’s been well documented that if this were the case the Yankees, Red Sox, and Mets would end up with all the talent since they have all the money. I disagree if a small market team can turn that first pick into three picks, then they will likely find a good player out of the bunch with much less risk to their financial situation. Especially small market teams like the A’s, Rays, and Marlins would definitely benefit from taking numerous picks instead of that first rounder. People assume that teams are going to make a bad pick with the extra ones they have received, but nobody that’s drafted is garuanteed to have success. The players chosen might likely have more “tools”, but there is no guarantee that tying up their payroll in a prospect will help the team down the road. Don’t you think a team could get a better deal paying $6 to $10 million a year for a proven player? I think being able to swap picks will just give teams more options, and not give teams like the Nationals, a sign this guy or you’re out of luck scenario! Hell, Strasberg could even end up on my list of bad contracts before he throws a major league pitch.

Doin Work 2009 NBA Mock Draft

Maybe it’s no coincidence that the NBA Draft falls on June 25th this year, which happens to be my birthday. Since I’ll be getting crushed at a bar Thursday with my iPhone out, watching each pick unfold, and then going home and watching it again on DVR I figured I might as well come up with a mock draft. So, let’s get started………

blake-griffinLos Angeles (Clippers) #1 Blake Griffin: What can we say about this pick? Nothing really, it’s the brain dead easy choice in a parity driven draft. What we’ll be writing about it in a few years is anybody’s guess, especially with the Clippers landing the golden ticket. My hunch, Griffin is a three or four time all-star by the time his career is over. If he can achieve that in a Clippers uniform, then this is the best thing to happen to the organization since Don Sterling died….wait……never mind.

NCAA San Diego Connecticut BasketballMemphis #2 Hasheem Thabeet: Speaking of the Clippers, I think the Grizzlies are the “New Clippers” of the NBA if that makes any sense. After GIVING away Paul Gasol last year, you have to wonder what motives this team has to field a quality product. Anyhow, the front line is the worst in the NBA, and the Grizz haven’t had any success with their other Spanish players (Gasol & Navarro), touching another doesn’t seem plausible. Thabeet and his 153lbs shot blocking force seems like the easy pick here.

rickyrubioOklahoma City #3 Ricky Rubio: Who knows what happens here. Sam Presti is a genius, and will take in every scenario before pulling the trigger on anything. The back court is young, dynamic, and flexible. Rubio seems to fit the mold of an upside-rich player who will have time to grow as the team continues to build over the next few years. Side Note: a trade here is very possible for a team that may have an offer which includes a veteran and salary cap relief.

33817685_Nike_Hoop_SummitSacramento #4 Tyreke Evans: “It was a man beating up boys.” Strong words coming out of Sacramento…especially with the likes of Flynn and Curry he was apparently dropping whoop ass on. Evans strikes me as the type of player who gets drafted with little hype and immediately kills it in the NBA, leaving everybody saying “why the hell didn’t we see this coming.” I love this pick much more for the Kings, who don’t seem to have a situation that allows Rubio to mold his game into NBA form in the near term. Kings fans should be happy if this pick pans out.

harden3Washington #5 James Harden: First things first, Washington trades this pick. But for simplicity (and because I’m not a wordsmith like Bill Simmons) we’ll just select Harden. I don’t have much to say about Harden….I’m totally at a loss after his NCAA Tournament showing, and I can’t shake his final game from my mind. I’m guessing the Wizards can’t either to be honest. His overall skills and ability can’t be argued however, and he makes a nice addition to the Wizards back court. Nick Young may not be the long term answer at SG anyhow.

*Nov 21 - 00:05*Minnesota #6 Jonny Flynn: Flynn has been making waves in pre-draft work outs, and I can’t see him slipping very far. He may not be the best fit for Minnesota, but I think he has convinced enough GM’s that letting him slide would be at their own risk.  He’s a ballsy East Coast point guard, who has the skills and moxy to step right in and be a leader. No other PG is on the table with so few questions (ie. holiday, Jennings).

amd_stephencurryGolden State #7 Stephan Curry: Cloudy times in Golden State, with Larry Riley taking over the helm for Chris Mullen in the front office, and Monta Ellis apparently speaking out that he wants to be the lone ranger at point guard or risk demanding a trade. If the Warriors were to take the easy way out, Jordan Hill from Arizona slides in here. But this is Golden State we’re talking about!! Despite Curry refusing to schedule work outs with the Warriors, his leverage to avoid getting drafted here is nil. Tons of buzz, deadly outside shooting, and an identical player to Ellis makes drafting him impossible to pass up for the always entertaining Golden State Warriors (oh and his gun slinging tendencies make Nelly want to break out another twelver of bud light).

jrueholidayNew York #8 Jrue Holiday: I’m not sure who is more distraught here: Stephan Curry or the Knicks! Having said that, New York must immediately shift there focus to the remaining young point guards left on the board. Despite Holiday’s struggles at UCLA, he showed flashes of amazing skill, and it became obvious later in the season that Ben Howland’s system was reining in Holiday far too much. The fast pace, open floor offense of D’Antoni’s makes Holiday a better choice then Brandon Jennings, who lacks some of the physical attributes of Jrue. Not an ideal situation for the Knicks, but still a solid upside pick nonetheless.

demar-derozan-deuxToronto #9 DeMar DeRozan: With Anthony Parker and Shawn Marion approaching free agency in July, addressing the wing position seems like the most realistic direction. Let’s assume Parker re-signs, and Marion walks shall we? Bringing in an offensive scorer at the two guard spot seems ideal, and DeRozan looks like a pretty good fit. His overall game is still extremely raw, but no other pick really jumps out here. An outside chance exists that the Raptors take Jordan Hill instead based on just the value of his slide, but not likely.

brandon-jennings-u-of-aMilwaukee #10 Brandon Jennings: Ramon Sessions is a free agent this summer, and Luke Ridnour is not the answer in a full time role. Brandon Jennings is a great fit here, especially if Sessions bolts for more money elsewhere. Milwaukee would also be a low key franchise for Jennings to play as he adapts to the NBA. Although his struggles overseas were well documented, he may posses some of the greatest upside and flash in the draft. Picking him on the back end of the lottery is a low risk situation for the Bucks, and a great fit for Jennings.

jordanhill2_mediumNew Jersey #11 Jordan Hill: Rod Thorn, the Net’s GM has been very public in his desire to draft a forward and get a bruiser in the process. I’m not sure Hill qualifies as any sort of enforcer at the NBA level, but his skills and size certainly outweigh  the other limitations of say Tyler Hansbourgh. Hill and Lopez would actually be a solid young core at center and power forward, on both sides of the ball. This could be back to back draft coups for New Jersey if Hill in facts slips this far.

terrence_williams_80236187Charlotte #12 Terence Williams: I have to site my sources on this one. After reading Chad Ford’s intel on his buzz page over at ESPN I’ve gone ahead and taken this pick from him (hell the man get’s paid to know his shit right?). I’ve had Gerald Henderson slotted here from the day he announced he was entering the draft. In fact I’ve had any player from Duke or North Carolina in this year’s draft here as well for back up. Apparently much has changed in the last week, and Williams has impressed everybody in Charlotte with his workouts and interviews. With rumors flying that Gerald Wallace is on the trading block, Williams maybe an ideal replacement, and makes more sense over Henderson who comes with questions marks.

TP_262134_CASS_acc11_12Indiana #13 Ty Lawson: Unless somebody out of the blue falls to Indiana, the Pacers have said there looking to draft a point guard. Although Jeff Teague and Eric Maynor may have some more desirable upside, you can’t match the hard nosed, winning background of Lawson. He brings solid ability and ball handling, and an impressive resume of winning at the college level. He may not have some of the athletic flash NBA scouts covet, but you’re also not drafting a bust here either. Long term stability, and a productive NBA player isn’t a bad get at 13.

gerald-hendersonPhoenix #14 Gerald Henderson: Ugh, I’m not sure what Phoenix does here to be honest. There are a million different places that they can go, including the chance they move up the draft board or trade out of the first round entirely in a deal that includes Shaq getting shipped out town at the same time. If Phoenix is set on drafting completely on upside, Austin Daye from Gonzaga seems logical in the Sun’s system. In the end I think Henderson gets the nod, but nothing surprises me at this point if the Suns go a different direction.

Doin Work Fantasy Football 2009 Mock Draft

The most comprehensive fantasy football mock draft this side of espn or yahoo.   Here’s who we’d pick and why….


#1 Drafting Under the Influence – RB Adrian Peterson, Minnesota Vikings

This isn’t even a decision in my mind. He’s a threat every play to go the distance, and even when it looks like he’s stuffed he can break off a Barry Sanders-esque escape. Nobody is surprised when he puts up 200 yards and a score or two! His skill set is off the charts and better than every other RB in the draft. He vowed to come back this season bigger and faster, definitely scary for any of the competition he’s about to run over!

#2 TD’s Are My Forte – RB Michael Turner, Atlanta Falcons

Love having the 2nd pick, Turner is a no-brainer choice for me here. Atlanta has a dynamic offense which makes keying the run more difficult, and we know what Turner is capable of doing. I project him not only matching his offensive numbers last season, but slightly increasing them. Until I see Maurice Jones-Drew in a full time role, he doesn’t pass Turner here. Should be interesting to see who is left on the board on the way back in the 2nd round.

#3 Who Shot Plax? – RB Chris Johnson, Tennessee Titans

Titans have always been built as a run-first offense, as  Conservative is Jeff Fisher’s middle name.  Don’t quote me on that, could be Fred for all I know.  As the Titans continue to employ a sub-par passing game, the two back system will flourish, and Johnson will receive the bulk of the carries on 1st and 2nd down.  I was impressed with his receiving game as well last year, a great target with much better than average hands, shiftiness, and speed.

#4 White Russians For Breakfast – RB Deangelo Williams, Carolina Panthers

Looking at my options on the board, I’m intrigued by both DWill and MJD.  I’m a bit hesitant about SJax, LT, and BWest in their current situations, Sjax on a shitty team, LT running close to empty (?) and Westbrook having surgery on his foot.  I like Deangelo because they looked for extra ways to get the ball in his hands in the Wildcat and I think he’ll have a decent receiving year.  A few vultured goalline carries will be made up in other areas like long runs and perhaps a passing TD or two this year.

#5 No More Madden For Me – RB Maurice Jones-Drew, Jacksonville Jaguars

I wasn’t happy about sitting at five, you typically watch the 3 sure fire running backs get picked, and are left with about 5 different players who all have there pros and cons (this years crop includes Steven Jackson, LT, Westbrook, Gore, and Portis). But holy smokes does a gift fall to me with Maurice Jones-Drew. With the featured role in the back field all his, and the experts putting him at 2 at worst 3 on there boards, I feel like I get a big time break here. More then likely I will be looking to match a catch happy MJD with a top tier wideout in the next round. Continue reading