Who cam out on top in last night's NBA Draft?

NBA Draft recap: Winners and Losers

The NBA Draft was last evening, and although this draft might not have been deep in regards to franchise changing players, it was deep in solid potential starters and All Stars, which is exactly what a lot of teams need.

The Hornets picked first, and obviously took Anthony Davis, the one undisputed game changer in this draft. They might have by default been the ultimate winner, but below I go into grading all of the teams that won and lost in last night’s draft. There are more winners than losers thanks to the level of talent in this year’s draft class. 

Winners 

New Orleans Hornets 

Anthony DavisOk, this is the obvious one, because the Hornets got the one big prize in this draft. However, they also won in my opinion by drafting Doc Rivers’ son, Austin Rivers with the 10th pick. A lot of people, including myself, had Rivers going later in the draft with the Hornets trading away the 10th pick. Coach Monty Williams and Doc Rivers have always been close, and the Hornets apparently love Rivers. If he can convert to a sub-point guard alongside Eric Gordon, these two could be a nice backcourt. Dare I say that the Hornets might have a chance to make the playoffs? 

Boston Celtics 

The Boston Celtics had two picks in the first round, and as some suspected, the concerns on Jared Sullinger made him fall right into the Celtics’ lap at 21st. Sullinger is the best low post scorer in the draft, and although he won’t wow you with his athleticism, he makes up for it with his toughness and rebounding. If he can stay healthy, he will be a force to be reckoned with. Also, the C’s got Syracuse center Fab Melo. Although Melo won’t wow you either, he is a good defender, and can block shots. He won’t give you much on offense, but his defense will be great in the Celtics’ system once Melo matures a little more. I would compare Melo to Deandre Jordon in Los Angeles.

Oklahoma City Thunder

At 28th, the Oklahoma City Thunder weren’t expecting much, but they got a whole lot. Perry Jones III dropped all the way to the Thunder, and for a guy who was projected in the lottery if he would have come out last season, the Thunder should be going crazy. Jones is a 6’10 forward combo, who can handle the ball and play inside and out. Even though he has some “motor” and injury questions, if he can just be himself and stay healthy, we might be talking about this as the biggest steal of this draft in the next few seasons.

Chicago Bulls

Speaking of another team with only one pick, the Bulls went right after the, and they got a steal of their own. Chicago drafted Marquis Teague, the younger brother of Hawks point guard Jeff Teague. Marquis was rated as one of the best point guards in the draft, and with Derrick Rose likely out for most of the season; the Bulls are now able to shed some money off of their payroll. Teague has an estimated PER of 13.18, which is the highest among non-lottery guards, and puts him fourth overall in projected efficiency among the guards drafted last night, above Bradley Beal, Harrison Barnes and Jeremy Lamb.

Sacramento Kings

Staying at #5 benefitted the Kings big time in the draft, as Thomas Robinson slid down far enough for the Kings to snag him. Robinson will be great alongside DeMarcus Cousins, and he will give the Kings a dose of defense, something no one on their roster has ever heard of. The Kings also had a second round pick, but they traded it to the Pacers for cash. The Kings are in need of cash, and they have enough really young guys anyway. Good moves from Sacramento. 

Detroit Pistons 

The Pistons were also the beneficiaries of a dream scenario, as the big man Andre Drummond fell to them at #9. Drummond was the highest rated big man in the draft, and although people have questions about his toughness and motor, he has one of the highest upsides of any big man in the draft. Putting this monster next to Greg Monroe will be huge in years to come. Although the Pistons are quite young, they have a lot of talent. It’s going to be Tayshaun Prince and the Baby Pistons this season, but they have a chance to really shine. Detroit also got Texas A&M prospect Khris Middleton at the 39th pick. Middleton is another guy who was projected as a 1st rounder some time ago, and the 6’8 swingman will be a great replacement for Prince once he decides to hang them up. 

Houston Rockets 

This is a kind of default win for the Rockets, who traded for a trio of first round draft picks. They didn’t make the big time draft day move, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t in the future. Houston had the 12th, 16th and 18th picks, and they got a nice trio of young pieces. At 12, the Rockets got Jeremy Lamb, a nice athletic shooting guard from UConn. At 16, they got a top 10 talent in Royce White, whose only knock is that he has an anxiety disorder and is afraid of flying. Lastly, at 18, they got Terrence Jones, a guy that was rumored in the top ten as well. He is going to fit nicely if the Rockets deal Luis Scola. Even if the Rockets keep all of these guys, they will all be solid for Houston. 

Portland Blazers 

My last winner of this draft is the Blazers, who had a ton of picks, two of which that were in the lottery. At 6, the Blazers got arguably the best point guard in the draft in Damian Lillard, and at 11 they got the biggest player in the draft in Meyers Leonard. Lillard should come in immediately and produce. He will be the default starter because of how bad Raymond Felton played. Leonard is a project, but his size and athleticism should be key in Portland. The Blazers also got good value in the 2nd round, as they selected Will Barton, a sharp shooter from Memphis. All three should be bargains in regards to their rookie efficiency. 

Losers

New York Knicks

This is an obvious loss for me because the Knicks didn’t even have any picks until the 2nd round. They are still dealing with the effects of the Carmelo Anthony trade, and a lot of their picks went to Denver. The Knicks had one pick in the 2nd round and selected Kostas Papanikolaou from Greece. No one had heard of him until the Euroleague Finals where he shut down Andrei Kirilenko. He won't even be here for another few seasons, so the Knicks got absolutely nothing for the immediate future. Good job Knicks! 

Miami Heat

I know, how could the Heat be a loser if they just won the title? They don’t need the draft! I hate to be the bringer of bad news to all you new band wagon Heat fans, but the Heat are strapped for cash. They couldn’t afford to keep their first round selection, so they traded him to the Sixers for a future first rounder and a 2nd rounder. With their 2nd round pick, they picked Justin Hamilton, a center from LSU. He will also be playing in Europe this season, so the Heat are stuck with their championship roster. Eddy Curry is their only center…

Indiana Pacers

I don’t know what the Pacers were thinking in the draft. I know they are going through a front office change, but they raised several eyebrows. With their 1st round pick, the Pacers selected Miles Plumlee at 25th, a center from Duke. Plumlee didn’t wow anyone, but he has the skills to be good I guess. There were several guys I would have taken ahead of him, like Perry Jones III and Arnett Moultrie. The Pacers already have Roy Hibbert, even though he is a restricted free agent, so maybe Plumlee is just insurance. The Pacers also bought a 2nd rounder from Sacramento and picked Orlando Johnson, who could be solid. However, this draft could be great value or no value for the Pacers, and I think they could have had better upside value in the draft picking at 25th.

Brooklyn Nets

This one is obvious, and they are my final loser. They could lose even more before next season, but the Nets didn’t have a first rounder, and they had to trade for a 2nd rounder higher than their own 57th pick. They did get a few players that could be solid, such as Tyshawn Taylor, but it won’t matter any if they can’t keep Deron Williams. The Nets might be high in the lottery next season.