Archive for Sunday, June 29, 2008

Woodling: NBA Draft a joke

June 29, 2008


So I'm watching the NBA Draft the other night, and Darrell Arthur looks like his dog was just run over, and I'm thinking: What about Mario Chalmers?

Here it is late in the first round, and Chalmers, the man who nailed the magical three-pointer in the NCAA championship game, is still waiting for his name to be called.

ESPN analyst Jay Bilas keeps saying Chalmers is the best player available, but he might as well be talking to The Love Guru. No NBA general manager is listening.

Prior to the draft, most pundits thought Chalmers would go somewhere between Nos. 20 and 25. Heck, one so-called expert had Chalmers going as high as 12th. Talk about egg on your face.

So finally we come to the San Antonio Spurs with the 26th pick. Surely the Spurs will take Chalmers. R.C. Buford, a good buddy of Kansas coach Bill Self, is the Spurs' GM, and the consensus is San Antonio needs backcourt depth.

Sure enough, the Spurs take a guard, but it's somebody named George Hill from IUPUI, a school whose main claim to fame is the longest palindromic acronym in the NCAA.

Another snub. Of the KU first-round probables, only Brandon Rush has gone according to form at No. 13.

Next it's the New Orleans Hornets, and at least they end Arthur's misery. But then Memphis and Detroit go for Syracuse's Donte Greene and Indiana's D.J. White, a couple of so-so forwards, respectively, leaving Chalmers with one more chance at the 30th and last guaranteed contract.

Wouldn't it be neat if Chalmers went to the defending NBA champion Boston Celtics? From the NCAA champs to the NBA champs. Ah, the storybook possibilities.

And then commissioner David Stern walks to the podium and announces: "With the 30th pick in the NBA Draft, the Boston Celtics select J.R. Giddens of the University of New Mexico."

Are you kidding me? Not only do the Celtics dump on Chalmers, they stick the dagger deeper by tapping Giddens, the one-time KU bad boy who had been projected to go somewhere in the middle of the second round.

Worse is what Celtics' coach Doc Rivers says afterward about Giddens. "He has a chance." Rivers tells the Boston media, "to fight for minutes right away because of his defense."

His defense??? Has Giddens improved that much since his freshman and sophomore years on Mount Oread when he couldn't guard the Phog Allen statue?

Meanwhile, we know Chalmers' strong suit is defense. Then there's the character issue. Who can forget that incident three years ago at a local watering hole that precipitated Giddens' departure? Meanwhile, Chalmers' nose has been so clean it squeaks.

Well, nobody ever said life was fair. At least Chalmers will have an opportunity to make the roster of the Miami Heat, if indeed he is still with the Heat when you read this.

Kansas, as you know, tied a record by having five players drafted. At the same time, the Jayhawks probably set another record when all five were traded, including Arthur an unbelievable three times.

Sometimes I wonder if the NBA Draft is really serious business or merely an inside joke league coaches and GMs play on a gullible glued-to-the-TV populace.


Jeff Kilgore 9 years, 4 months ago

Gram, your comment is as sour as the article is well-written. Chalmers' shot wasn't lucky, it was heavily guarded. They work on that shot every day. It wasn't the first three he hit in his career. In fact, it was the greatest shot in school history. Luck is in the eye of the beholder. Not a KU fan, huh?No, Chalmers should not have stayed in school. Within months, he'll be a millionaire with an outside chance to become a multi-millionaire. Did you notice that five seniors were drafted? FIVE? Chalmers struck when the iron was hot, and if you think that MC can't play with draft picks 10-30, there isn't enough room for me to explain to you why you're wrong. Besides, the article already did. Good luck, Mario and Darrell. You'll have a chance to show the NBA that they slipped up. You always take players who know how to win. Here's to all of you Hawks. Remember what Self taught at KU, like the analysts said.

Boeing 9 years, 4 months ago

Thanks for recapping every moment of the first round in a truly exciting fashion...Teams draft on what they need and what they have seen. Clearly, none of those teams thought Chalmers was their guy. And, don't forget, outside of Lawrence he's still really not known...we here may think he's a god, but he isn't.

gram77 9 years, 4 months ago

Sounds like sour grapes to me. Chalmers should have stayed in school. One lucky shot does not make an NBA player.

Jeff Kilgore 9 years, 4 months ago

I teach English. Woodling's "style" is appropriate for this city and this university. Writing style? "Slant?" I expect Woodling to be KU-biased. This isn't Philly. If he were overly critical of our boys, I wouldn't want to read him. Plus, a reporter who is a lot more informed than any of you, an ESPN writer, believes that Miami had the best draft. This was when he thought that the trio included both Chalmers and Jackson. Just my thoughts. Are you boys journalism majors? Lildos, you wrote, "so Chalmers still have (sic) room to show. . . when you should've written "has" for the helping verb. Pretty standard. You also confuse it's and its. So, while you might not like Woodling's style, he at least can cover basic English grammar. You'd be wise to do the same.

lildos 9 years, 4 months ago

Chalmers shot was not lucky, but he could easily stayed another year and having a better chance at the draft. Not that he will not become a good role player in the NBA, but to think that he should go early just because he hit a great shot in the NCAA finals is just not knowing NBA basketball. As Boeing pointed out, teams will draft who fit their needs, not who won the NCAA tournament. With that mentality, all KU players should be lottery picks.I personally think JR has a better chance to have a quick impact on an NBA team than Chalmers (but I hope Chalmers can prove me wrong), so that pick is a no brainer. To think that some NBA gm did that on purpose is to really think that Lawrence is the center of the Universe. A good example of a great college player that will have a hard time in the draft is Hasbrough next year. I know its early, but he is pre-ranked 20th in's 2009 mock draft. So success in college does not mean instant NBA lottery pick.While I do agree that Chalmers and all KU players have the advantage of being well coached players, the NBA draft is about potential. Kaun and Jackson, most likely are close to their peak in terms of NBA talent (again, I hope they prove me wrong), Arthur is probably the one that has the greatest potential, and both Rush and Chalmers, to me, are question marks in terms of NBA potential. Those guards that went before Chalmers are probably players that NBA scouts think have more potential.Remember, Reggie Miller was drafted 11th when he came to the NBA, and there are a great number of players that are drafted later and become great players (Ginobili-57th pick, Tony Parker-28th pick), so Chalmers still have room to show that he can be a great NBA Player.Woodling, like always, has an extremely biased perspective and cannot look past his own ideas of what is good in a sport. Not to mention that his writing style is atrocious.

lildos 9 years, 4 months ago

jkilgore,English is my second language, if you teach English you should know that those are common mistakes for people that have English as their second language. I was not writing an academic paper or an article for the LJworld, so I don't tend to proofread or have KU's writing center help me to make sure its right.I was not attacking Woodling's grammar mistakes, but his style. It is a matter of opinion and that is my opinion, that his writing style is atrocious. I understand that you need to have a KU bias when writing at a newspaper that is catering KU fans, but this article, like many others, go a little too far in the perception that KU players are the best period. Don't get me wrong, I am a KU fan and I think all of those guys did an awesome job this year, but to think that because of that they should be lottery picks is just not wanting to understand how the NBA works. Like I said, I hope all these guys prove everybody wrong and become the next NBA All First Team, but to complain so much about the draft order is just wrong.The comment about Miami having the best draft is in a way what I was also trying to say. Draft order does not matter anymore, and you can get great players late in the draft. I was not attacking the KU players, I was just commenting on how it is unnecessary to complain so much that "our boys" slipped down on the draft.But hey, if the grammar police wants to come up and arrest me, I guess there is nothing I can do. Oh, jkilgore, let me know what grade I get on this "essay".

Boeing 9 years, 4 months ago

"Yeah, thats a good point:..i doubt many people watched that game:..snoozer"I never said nobody watched it, but go around the country and ask people who watched the game WHO shot that 3 pointer to bring it to many, other than real KU fans, will know the name?

Clinton Hanson 9 years, 4 months ago

Man have you seen summer league. So far Chalmers had averaged 16 points a game for Miami, more than derrick rose and he only played three, don't give me that tendinitis crap. Darrell had 18 in his first game for Memphis and a solid 10 the next. Jackson is still awaiting for his team (Cleavland) to play tomorrow i believe. Robinson going undrafted is playing in summer league with the Rockets. Rush was not at the Pacers summer league for some reason. Kaun is in Russia but will eventually play for Cleavland. And other former KU players have been making names for themselves Keith Langford has been outstanding for both Chicago and Denver, Aaron Miles gets to play for Dallas, Wayne Simien (who has a Ring) is playing for Cleavland with Jackson this summer. Billy Thomas former KU sharpshooter is playing in Cleavland. Hell I can take a step forward and say KU players who left or got kicked off may make there teams like JR Giddens with Boston, Padgett with Miami, even C.J. Giles with Toronto,.So KU is very well represented, and don't bad talk Chalmers a lot of people also believe he has a chance to start the way hes been playing.

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