Well ladies and gents it’s that time of year again…barbecue food every Saturday, spring is almost over, summer is kicking in, and in just over a week the 2016 NBA draft will commence from the Barclay’s Center in Brooklyn New York. For me personally the NBA draft is THEY draft of all the four major sports in the United States. I know what you’re thinking, why the NBA draft over the NFL draft?
Well for starters the NBA draft has historically had more household names in it than football (forgive me if I don’t know the starting O-line and D-line from every SEC, Big Ten, and Big Twelve school), and the NBA is not a million rounds taking place over THREE nights. The NBA draft is short, sweet, and does not drag on for a whole weekend.
With that being said, I also love the NBA draft because as an avid follower of college basketball I thoroughly enjoy seeing where certain players land in the draft and what players get snubbed for being drafted at all. However, as a Celtics fan this draft is especially intriguing as trader Danny and the Boston Celtics will be drafting at the third spot (along with two more first round picks and four more second round picks) thanks to the idiotic and asinine actions of the Brooklyn Nets front office.
Every year around this time I often will make one (or 20) mock drafts of the first round of the NBA draft. I find it very entertaining for me and fun because I know the majority of the prospects and have watched a good portion of them play throughout the year (minus the foreign players). Per request of fellow BSS writer Thomas McGovern, I have decided to construct my official 2016 NBA draft in this article.
The draft will be just the first round lottery picks (15-60 are not worth a mock draft because those picks can be a crap shoot and it would also take a lot of time) and will contain a brief reason why I believe that team will select that players at that pick. So without further ado, here is the official Doyle NBA mock draft 2016.
|This is as good as done, Simmons will be the newest member of the basketball version of the Bad News Bears|
|This is also as good as done in my eyes, Ingram will fit well on the Lakers as he can shoot well but also has the size and length to grab boards. His Durant type characteristics make him so highly touted.|
|As a fan of the Celtics I know, and I hope Ainge knows as well, that the Celtics have enough guards for the entire league and what they really are missing is that one big man to really be a force around the rim and be that closer down low that has eluded them for years. However, there is no big man that can make an immediate impact for them (looking at you dragon) so that is why I believe the Celtics will draft Buddy Hield. While he is not a big man, I believe Hield can be a mini-kobe in the way he finishes games and in the way he can play a decent inside game for a SG.|
|Phoenix is still a 2-3 years away from contending for a playoff spot and needs to focus on building around Knight and Len. Yup…Alex Len. Bender is the perfect pick for them because he provides them offense at the big spot and he is still probably a year or two away from actually seeing an NBA game. Bender is good for a re-building team like the Phoenix Suns.|
|With Rubio getting up there in age and Lavine being mainly a combo guard off the bench, I believe Kris Dunn will be that explosive point guard that will work well with Karl Anthony-Towns and Andrew Wiggins. Dunn is also known for his athleticism which would match up well with Wiggins athleticism.|
|6||New Orleans||Jamal Murray-PG/SG
|I am going to be honest here, I do not know how well Murray will fit in at the combo guard slot with the Pelicans already having Gordon at the SG, Holiday at the PG, and Evans at the PG/SF position. However Murray has proved to be a good shooter and dunker and with Holiday’s recent downslide, Murray may be in perfect position to slide in the starting lineup by February.|
|The Nuggets on paper have a team that is on the rise. Mudiay is young and had a good rookie season, Gary Harris can shoot like lights out and improved as the reason progressed, Gallinari showed up this year and appears as if he is here to stay, and Faried is a young player with plenty of talent offensively and defensively. If the Nuggets were to draft Poeltl (albeit early) then I believe they will be a well oiled machine once Poeltl and the rest of them full mature.|
|With the guard positions filled pretty well in Sacramento, I believe Brown would be a good fit as he could immediately impact the starting lineup if the kings were to shift Gay to PF and put Brown at the SF with either Rondo and Collison or Rondo and Belinelli at the 1 and 2 guards.|
|Seeing as Toronto already has a packed lineup and are not looking to fix something that is not broke, I believe that a project type player like Marquese Chriss, who averaged 13 points and 5 rebounds in his freshman year, would be a good choice for them. The raptors are arguably most weak at PF with Patrick Patterson and Luis Scola as their go-to options so going with Chriss would be a solid choice for the Raptors.|
|The Bucks are a solid team all around but their back up shooting guard is OJ Mayo. OJ MAYO. With that being said, I believe the Mayo has gone bad and its replacement is a fresh serving of Dejounte Murray who averaged 16 points, 6 rebounds and 4 apples in 33 minutes. This is a guy who knows how to handle big minutes and crash the boards at 6 foot 5.|
|Orlando is a solid young team that has plenty of young talent at the 1-3 positions with guys like Oladipo, Payton, and Gordon. However their PF and C positions do not have depth. Pekovic, their center, is a solid starter but has no backups. Illyasova mans the PF position and is a decent shooter but not an NBA starter. Sabonis is just what this young team needs and his size and versatility makes him an option for the 4 or 5.|
|The Jazz have a very tough starting lineup to crack with guys like Hayward, Gobert, Favors, Burks, Burke, and Exum. Their backups are not too shabby either which makes them a team that is very unlikely to start any rookie they draft this year. The one spot they are lacking could be a SG/SF backup which I believe would be a spot perfect for young Malachi Richardson. Richardson had a very good freshman year for Syracuse and stepped up big when he made a name for himself in the NCAA tournament.|
|This is Phoenix’s second pick which means they should pick someone who has proven themselves through four years of college just in case their first pick does not pan out well. Valentine is a perfect insurance pick because of the fact that he was outstanding all four years at Michigan state and is more mature than most players.|
|With Noah’s days in Chicago limited, the Bulls could really help themselves out by bringing in a big man to come off the bench behind either Mirotic or an aging Gasol. Brice Johnson could fill this spot very well I believe as he is a beast at shot blocking and an all-around freak of an athlete. One concern for Johnson is his age compared to other younger guys and his size (6 foot 9). However Charles Barkley was 6 foot 6 and Dennis Rodman was 6 foot 7 and both are two of the greatest rebounders of all time. So the small frame of Johnson should be worry to many scouts.|
Side note: If any of you have ever listened to Jack Corsi’s radio show ‘Corsi’s Crease’ on 89.5 WSKB FM Westfield, then you may know why I did not include projected first round picks Skal Labissiere or Deyonta Davis. Both these players are without a doubt fantastic basketball players, however they are not one and dones. Labissiere averaged only 6 points and 3 rebounds in 15 minutes play and Deyonta Davis was a little better with 7 points and 5 boards in 18 minutes per game. These numbers are not horrible but I just do not think these are NBA ready stats. Just because these players were considered one and dones coming out of high school does not mean that’s their only label. Clearly these guys had relatively subpar freshman years and because of that they should not be drafted into the NBA. Rather they need one more proving year. To conclude, it has been a pleasure writing my first article and while I am sure Thomas McGovern will rip this apart, I cannot wait for the release of my second article.