Friday, June 30, 2006

Who made Money proud?

Money started off strong nailing the first pick with the big European stiff, but then went into a bit of slump missing the next several (or all) of the remaining picks. But this draft is not about Money, it is about the mustard colored suits (Thank you Mouhamed Saer Sene) and figuring out the Winners and the Isiahs (losers).

Money Plays:

Indiana: I have seen some poor comments on the Pacer’s draft choices of Shawne Williams and James White, but I like them both. Both of these guys are great athletes and could be steals where they were drafted. They both could suck really badly too, but I bet they won’t. I like drafting guys like these, especially later in the draft, and I applaud the Pacers on this draft.

LA Clippers: Wow. Who are these guys? The Clippers turned a lot of heads in the playoffs this year and now choose two solid players, both in the second round. Paul Davis is a good player, although his ceiling has probably been hit, who will help this team. Guillermo Diaz is an incredible athlete, great shooter and a fantastic pick at 52.

LA Lakers: Money is not a fan of the second round pick, but is really impressed with Farmar at 26. What a great situation for the Bruin. He will start and will succeed there. Good choice in coming out early.

Memphis: Incredible draft. Don’t ask me how they were able to get Rudy Gay at #8 for Shane Battier. Rudy Gay could have easily been the #1 pick this year. Aside from obtaining Gay, they picked up Kyle Lowry, point guard from Villanova and Alexander Johnson from FSU. All three players have a great shot of helping the team next season.

New Jersey: As a Cal graduate and a Pac 10 fan, I love this team. Jason Kidd runs the point and throws the ball off the glass to his UofA buddy Richard Jefferson. Now they add Hassan Adams into the mix? Combine this with the 2 UConn players, Williams and Boone, and this team comes out on top with the best draft. Williams, while lacking common sense and being slightly pudgy is the best point guard in the draft. One side note here; Uconn should be embarrassed that they did not win the title last year. 4 players drafted in the first round, their fifth starter, Denham Brown, taken in the second round. What a joke. They really did not like playing for Calhoun.

Utah: The Jazz are such a boring team, but maybe they are starting to turn things around. They made three great picks. Ronnie Brewer was graded out as the best athlete in the draft and could work out nicely. Dee Brown will get a chance to play with his Illinois backcourt mate Deron Williams again and Paul Millsap does all the dirty work down low.

On the clock for 2007:

New York: Isiah Thomas is hearing it, as he should be. Renaldo Balkman is a terrible pick. He plays with a lot of energy and enthusiasm. He sounds more like a dancer then a first round pick.

Boston: Danny Ainge needs to settle down. First he trades for Sebastian Telfair, who is a talented, but extremely young and raw point guard. So who does he pick up? Another talented, but young and raw point guard in Rajon Rondo. That does not make sense to me. Ainge does deserve credit for trading for Leon Powe.

Houston: I know there are financial reasons why trading Battier to the Grizzlies for the #8 pick makes sense. I think you throw those reasons out the window if Gay is sitting there at #8. Whoops.

Orlando: Both picks are horrible. JJ Redick will never get a shot off and James Augustine is worthless.

Sacramento: Quincy Douby is a good shooter, but he should not have been picked with other players, such as Marcus Williams, Farmar or even Shannon Brown still available.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Mocking Money

The NBA draft is tomorrow afternoon. This used to be an all time favorite “TV viewing” pastime for Money. The recent surge of high school players and European league players has saturated my college basketball knowledge and bumped some of Money’s finest out of the lottery. With the high school kids staying back, Money just has to contend with the foreign born players. If nothing else, this draft will present a chance to catch up on the latest trends in men’s formal wear, although I don’t think I would look good in a mustard colored suit. I probably would look nice in a top hat and a matching cane though.

1) Toronto – Andrea Bargnani: So who does Money pick number 1? A Euro? This seems to be the consensus pick. Money’s only European player profiled in the lottery.

2) Chicago – Tyrus Thomas: The biggest upside player in the draft. The NBA is a sucker for players like Thomas. He is incredibly talented, but will never be more than a nightly Sportscenter highlight.

3) Charlotte – Brandon Roy: Michael Jordan is back in the NBA spotlight and gets a chance to make amends for his previous first pick blunder in Kwame Brown. Will he make a mistake again? Not if he picks Money’s ROY; Brandon Roy. He is the most ready and most complete player in the draft. Whichever team gets Roy will be delighted.

4) Portland – Adam Morrison: This would be great for Portland to land Morrison as this would be a huge help for this lowly franchise to get back to the top. Morrison is a passionate, fierce competitor. He can’t play defense, but nobody does in the NBA.

5) Atlanta – LaMarcus Aldridge: If he falls to Altanta, they will take him, even though it is believed they have already “agreed” to take Sheldon Williams here. I don’t like either pick. Aldridge was embarrassed by the “Big Baby” in the NCAA tournament. He will have a tougher time with more polished and physically imposing centers in the NBA.

6) Minnesota – Randy Foye: The Wolves seem to like this guy a lot. I suggest drafting Allen Ray in the second round. They are the same player.

7) Boston – Rajon Rondo: This is where the draft takes an interesting turn. The Celtics will do something stupid here.

8) Houston – J.J. Redick: The Rockets really want Brandon Roy (smart), but he will be gone by this point. They settle on Redick (not so smart). His teammate, Sheldon Williams is also a possibility as well.

9) Golden State – Rudy Gay: The Warriors are a mess and need help at all positions. But, Gay slipping to them would be a step in the right direction.

10) Seattle – Sheldon Williams: The Sonics would be thrilled if Williams is available at this point. Don’t ask me why.

11) Orlando – Ronnie Brewer: His basketball shot is similar to Charles Barkley’s golf shot; it’s ugly. But, he has had a great camp and was graded out as one of the best athletes coming out of the draft. Possible steal here.

12) New Orleans – Patrick O’Bryant: The Hornets need a big man, so they will take one here. O’Bryant or Cedric Simmons seems like the obvious choice.

13) Philadelphia – Marcus Williams: The Sixers have a lot of needs, and point guard is one of them. Williams looks like the best point guard in the draft. Iverson is being shopped, so this pick is likely to be some other team’s property.

14) Utah – Rodney Carney: The Jazz need a shooting guard and should have plenty of options at this pick.

Second round nuggets:
Here are some of Money’s favorite college players who will make great second round picks:

Dee Brown: This kid is a winner. He is quick, clutch and a great free throw shooter.
Steve Novak: There is always a spot on the roster for a shooter like this. Novak is the best shooter in the draft.
Allan Ray: Randy Foye “light”. Tough as nails.
Craig Smith: He may be a bit under-sized, but he is an animal.
Eric Hicks: Same description as Smith, but more intimidating. This guy scares the crap out of me.