The draft is coming up on us fast, and there is a ton of chatter around Al Gore's Folly about who is going where. It seems, though, that the likely outcomes are starting to firm up a bit. But if this draft is like all the rest I have watched, we will see surprises.
I don't do a mock draft here on A Sea of Blue for two reasons: 1) I'm not any good at it, and 2) I am a casual NBA fan at best. Still, I will be doing at least one pre-draft show talking about Kentucky players, and possibly more.
Now, for the news:
TODAY'S QUESTION: The NBA draft is Thursday night. Forget the draft order; who are your top five players available, in order?
Read the whole thing.
It's official. Not that there was ever much doubt.
Payne credited UK coach John Calipari with helping him get started in coaching. In 2001 Calipari encouraged Payne to finish his degree -- which he did in sport administration -- and invited him to attend a private coaches' clinic in Memphis.
"I absolutely can't fault John Calipari's recruiting," Sherrill said. "He's good at it. You can't question what they're doing. They're pulling off pretty much miracles.
I know some people think Calipari should be recruiting Kentucky kids. I can tell you, however, that unless they are at minimum top-50 players and UK has scholarships available at their position, it will not happen.
Calipari is going to recruit the best of the best, no matter where they come from.
He is strangely poor at defensive rebounding, and that's an issue that will be tough to resolve. Is his impressive sophomore campaign indicative of his defensive rebounding or should he be measured by his embarrassing freshman and junior efforts? Patterson's rebounding will certainly be of concern as teams evaluate him prior to the draft.
This evaluation comes from reading the stats and not following the team, so it is understandable in its error. With the freakish Cousins in the lineup, Patterson was not called on to defensive rebound as much. Cousins was 28th in the nation (25%) in DR%, and when you have a guy eating up DR's like that, there isn't much room for another. Also, I'm not sure you can call 15% DR% "embarrassing."
Also, Patterson is 7th in shot blocking in UK history in only 3 years at UK. The only 3-year player who had more blocks was Sam Bowie. So I don't quite understand why they say Patterson is "not a shot blocker." For his position, Patterson blocked a lot of shots.
SB Nation's own Ridiculous Upside takes a look at Patrick Patterson's pro potential.
Patterson doesn't have much Upside, nor is he extremely Ridiculous, but he is is crazy efficient (1.139 points/poss, best among PFs), plays both ways, probably fits long term (the end is at last in sight for Messrs. Stojakovic and Posey) and ranks very favorably on the Tim Tebow Intangible Scale™.
By the time the curtains opened for the media to have access to the workout, the one-on-one portion that featured Derrick Favors and DeMarcus Cousins squaring off against each other had concluded. The remaining time was spent on drills, from catch and shoot jumpers, to pick and pops, to post moves and transition sprints. If one had to judge -- and I don't think this is the setting or the sample size to really change an opinion off of -- Cousins won the matchup yesterday, being the more polished perimeter player and displaying better footwork. This probably shouldn't surprise many, at least not those who followed Cousins high school career where he showed off much more of his perimeter game than he did during his one year at Kentucky.
From SB Nation's Liberty Ballers. So the matchup happened, and Cousins came out on top.
Via SB Nation's Canis Hoopus.
From SB Nation's Bullets Forever:
John Wall talked for 18 minutes today, and he demonstrated this quality to a T. He had lots of cliche answers to cliche questions, such as how he'll play with Gilbert Arenas, what it's like to be in this position with all the attention ("it's a dream come true) and such. He also found a way to make people laugh without being overly gregarious. But when he truly came alive was when he received basketball-related questions. There, he showed how he's humble, analytical and always looking to improve. He talked about his strengths in the most general terms, and went into great depth with his weaknesses. It was very encouraging to hear.
John Wall is going to be a great NBA player. You heard it here
If you pass him in the draft, he will never forget. When he's 35 years old and still playing, and he knows you passed on him, he will be trying to get 50. That's his mentality.
So you're saying that the Wizards should be worried, coach?
SB Nation's Golden State of Mind likes either Bledsoe or Orton at #18.
Wow. Orton a top-10 pick? Bizarre.