Okay, here is my second (and probably final) pass at this. I know people won't agree with certain picks, but just FYI, I think that people who zero in on this pick or that player are kind of missing the point of these mock drafts. This year's draft is a little weird in 2 ways. First, after the first 10 or so players, it is extremely flat so I expect a lot of teams to look for a player that can contribute primarily by filling a specific niche, and anything they get from that player beyond that is gravy. The problem is if players 11 through 50 (approx) have very little separation between them in terms of ability or potential, that means that someone has to drop. You may not agree with who drops, but someone has to & the way I did my mock, was after the lottery to really try and pick players that filled a team's need(s).
The second issue is there are at least 3 really tricky picks where a team seemingly either doesn't need or want any of the best players available at that spot; which means they will be forced to either reach for a player, take someone they don't want (maybe to trade later), or find a way to trade out of the pick. The three picks that seem the trickiest to me are picks 2, 5 & 13 and the fact is that what I, or anyone putting together a mock, decides to do at these spots really sets the stage for the entire remainder of the draft. So even 2 people who have a similar idea about player rankings might put together a much different looking mock just based on how they decided to handle these spots. In my opinion, the best mocks are the ones that come up with a creative, yet feasible solution to tricky spots like these. Whether it be a trade or a rationale for reaching on someone, you need to at least acknowledge the complexity of these picks or frankly your mock isn't worth much.
Combine these two factors & there are an infinite number of combinations, all of which could be argued ad nauseum. But I believe it best to view a mock on the macro, not the micro level. Does A lead to B, lead to C, etc. or does it look like a bunch of players slapped in some order with no rhyme or reason? The best mocks are the ones that flow like a river, deftly navigating the hazards & moving along with the current. You may not agree with individual picks, but you can see how the picking of one player, or perhaps a trade, has a domino effect that leads to another team picking a player you wouldn't have expected them to, but yet still makes sense in the context of the flow of that particular mock.
(I'm not sure any of this makes any sense frankly - I threw out my back a couple weeks ago & I've got some pretty good painkillers; which is nice, but isn't always the greatest ally of lucidity.)
I guess what I'm trying to say is that comments like "Player X went too high/low" kind of miss the point, because those players often only went where they went because of the events that preceded them or just because of team needs. I'll say it again: If there are 40 comparable players, not all of them are going to go in the last 20 picks of the first round...someone has to slide!
Here is the mock, hope you derive some form of enjoyment from it. Feel free to comment (not that you need an invite I'm sure).
Because there are a lot of trades, here is who ends up with what. <> means it's a pick from next year they gave up.
ATL: R. Rubio, T. Gibson, J. Taylor, and Songalia & Thomas (or whoever comes back in salary from WAS)
BOS: AJ Price
CHA: G. Henderson, N. De Colo, MIA 2010 2nd rounder
CHI: B Mullens, J. Meeks
CLE: D. Brown, J. Adrien
DAL: T. Williams
DEN: N. Collison
DET: H. Thabeet, W. Ellington, O. Casspi, <2010 1st (LP)>
GS: J. Flynn
HOU: C. Budinger, R. Dozier
IND: J. Pendegraph, L. Hudson, cash
LAC: B. Griffin
LAL: T. Lawson, J. Heytvelt, J. McClinton
MEM: J. Hill, P. Beverly, DET 2010 1st rounder (LP)
MIA: D. Summers, S. Gladyr, C. Jurrels, <2010 2nd rounder>
MIL: J. Teague, D. Carroll, 2010 PHX 2nd rounder
MIN: T. Evans, A. Daye, J. Jerekbo, V. Kravtsov, NY 2010 2nd rounder
NJ: D. DeRozan
NO: M. Thornton
NY: S. Curry, T. Hansborough, <2010 2nd>
OKC: J. Harden, G. Siler, A. Animu, cash
PHI: E. Maynor
PHX: B. Jennings, J. Pargo, <2010 2nd >
POR: D. Blair, N. Calathes
SAC: J. Holliday, V. Claver, P. Mills, D. Green, J. Brockman, G. Suton, cash
SAN: S. Young, L. Cummard, <2010 2nd rounder>
TOR: E. Clark, T. Douglas, R. Beaubouis
UTA: J. Johnson, D. Christmas
WAS: Josh Smith, cash
Forgot to even mention that there are also teams like Houston lurking in the weeds, making it even more challenging.
As for my mock itself:
The reason I had teams like Detroit & Portland move up is because both had so many extra picks that they made the most sense to do so & both filled a need (DET - Center, POR - beefy, rebounding PF) by packaging and moving up. If neither of those teams does at least something similar, they are going to end up having a lot of players they don't need/want (especially POR).
Finally, I know everyone & their mother thinks Sacramento is moving up to 2, but as a Sacramento resident & a Kings fan, I would be willing to bet that they don't. Further, I think Rubio has moved back to the pack a little, which is why I had them trading back even when he fell to them. With the first 3 picks non-PGs & the Knicks taking Curry, that left 4 players the Kings could live with & they were guaranteed at least their 4th choice, but like I said expected Holliday at least to be there.
I think their rankings right now are 1. Flynn 2. Rubio 3. Holliday 4. Evans - so given that, the move down made sense. If they stay put at 4, my money is on Flynn. They could still end up with Rubio, but it's far from a lock.
...Good call, on the radio here in PHX I heard we might swap picks with MIL at #10 to draft a PG, Suns are set a wing w/ J-Rich (assuming he stays), Barbosa and Grant Hill... Need a PG of the future w/ Nash having 1 year left on his deal
Washington is already insanely over the cap...if they trade their pick, I doubt they'll do it for a 12/year for 3 more year. The trade of #2 to Detroit seems really lopsided in their favor...and I'm a pistons fan... Also devon harris is signed for another 3-4 years, so saying that they might lose him doesn't make a lot of sense.
Alot of trades
Check out my mock http://www.nbadraft.net/nba_mock_drafts/comments/29071
I got the idea that his contract was up from hoopshype.com, which I was using to help with salaries. His salary line is blank & I mistakenly thought that meant he was an upcoming free agent - thought it was weird I hadn't heard anything about that before. Thanks for pointing that out.
So to solve this, I swapped PHX & NJ's selections. Given Harris' contract & I agree that PHX might grab a PG (I just thought that DeRozan might be a guy they would take even though maybe the need isn't quite as great), but knowing about Harris, it just makes sense to flip-flop them as the easiest thing to do (especially since it's completely feasible).
As for Detroit, it may look like they gain the upper hand at first glance, but someone usually does. Look at it from each team's perspective:
MEM: Demand for pick wasn't as high as hoped, especially once teams realized how much they want to move out of it. So moving down 7 spots in 1st & 8 spots in 2nd to net an extra 2010 1st rounder makes sense for them.
TOR: A team with a lot of holes (and more soon potentially), Toronto seemed the most likely team between MEM & DET to help bridge the gap between the two. Two fairly early second rounders would likely be enough to get Toronto to move, even if it puts them out of the top 10-11 where the top players are.
DET: Give up 2 mid-round first rounders & 2 early-ish 2nd rounders to grab Thabeet & a late first rounder.
Kind of makes sense for all involved I think.
The ATL-WAS trade may add long-term salary to WAS' payroll, but frankly at some point teams need to realize they're not all grabbing big free agents in 2010 anyway. I could see a couple teams who would have had cap room in 2010 change directions, either during the draft or subsequently, and move the franchise away from building cap space to nab a top FA & instead build a little differently. I'd put Sacramento in this boat in my mock - bringing in 5 players now & another overseas is a move away from that (closer to the POR model). Washington would certainly be doing that also with this trade, I don't know if it will happen - probably not frankly - but ATL wants to move Smith & WAS wants to move the 5th, so I figured out a way for it to work. That's really it.
And finally, yes there were a lot of trades - 7 in the first round, 3 in the 2nd. 2 first round picks & 3 2nd rounders were also bought. Is that a lot? Maybe, but most make sense & there have been that many trades before during drafts. Mostly I just used trades as a mechanism to move the draft along in a way that made sense. I realized that so many might make it a bit confusing, which is why I also posted a team-by-team breakdown - which people aren't fans of apparently. Oh well.
Thanks for the comments anyways - didn't mean to give the impression I didn't want any in my opening post, I just want people to put the pick/player into context of the draft as a whole before knocking me for where that guy ended up.
good mock Hill wont fall that far though.
I should have named this the "Most stupendous, fabolous, though-provoking mock draft ever!!!!" (or something like that anyway) if I wanted more people to look at it.