Observations from NBA draft

June 25, 2011


Number ... Team ... Player ... Position ... Height ... Class ... School ... Heisler’s comment:

  1. CLEVELAND — Kyrie Irving G 6-1 3⁄4 Fr. Duke — Other teams focused on 2016 when he’s a free agent. Just kidding.

  2. MINNESOTA — Derrick Williams F 6-7 3⁄4 So. Arizona — Career tracking up dramatically, should make it or make it big.

  3. UTAH — Enes Kanter C 6-9 3⁄4 Fr. Kentucky — Jazz front line could be taller but now wide as mountain range.

  4. CLEVELAND — Tristan Thompson F 6-7 1⁄4 Fr. Texas — Surprise here but with his length, explosion, no way he misses.

  5. TORONTO — Jonas Valanciunas C 6-9 1⁄2 Lietuvos Rytas — Not ready but rare Euro center who’s not overgrown small forward.

  6. WASHINGTON — Jan Vesely F 6-9 1⁄2 Partizan — No scorer but admirers see bigger, less dizzy Andrei Kirilenko.

  7. SACRAMENTO (a) — Bismack Biyombo F 6-8 1⁄2 Fuenlabrada — Charlotte-bound. May be smaller Serge Ibaka, or Saer Sene.

  8. DETROIT — Brandon Knight G 6-1 3⁄4 Fr. Kentucky — Wanted Tristan/Bismack. Who said BK’s better than Stuckey, Bynum?

  9. CHARLOTTE — Kemba Walker G 5-11 1⁄2 Sr. Connecticut — With him on Augustin’s shoulders, would have one full-size point.

  10. MILWAUKEE (b) — Jimmer Fredette G 6-0 3⁄4 Sr. Brigham Young Sacramento-bound. — Fits with Tyreke ... if he’s an NBA starter.

  11. GOLDEN STATE — Klay Thompson G 6-5 3⁄4 Jr. Washington St. — The player Jerry West was dying for drops in his lap.

  12. UTAH — Alec Burks G 6-5 Jr. Colorado — After passing on Knight, wanted point but that’s not how it went.

  13. PHOENIX — Markieff Morris F 6-7 3⁄4 Jr. Kansas — Pres. Babby, GM Blanks first to rank Markieff over twin Marcus.

  14. HOUSTON — Marcus Morris F 6-7 Jr. Kansas — Thanks, Suns: Higher-rated twin falls to Rockets.

  15. INDIANA — Kawhi Leonard F 6-6 Jr. San Diego St. — Trade to Spurs for George Hill shows how high Spurs are on him.

  16. PHILADELPHIA — Nikola Vucevic F 6-10 1⁄4 Jr. USC — Another dark horse. Dramatic improvement suggests he’s for real.

  17. NEW YORK — Iman Shumpert G 6-4 1/4 Sr. Georgia Tech — With one Knick over 6-8 1⁄2 barefoot, need more size than big point.

  18. WASHINGTON — Chris Singleton F 6-7 3⁄4 Fr. Florida St. — Billed as great defender but averaged only 6.8 rebounds.

  19. CHARLOTTE (d) — Tobias Harris F 6-8 Fr. Tennessee — Poor man’s Kawhi Leonard. Not gifted but a comer with game.

  20. MINNESOTA (e) — Donatas Motiejunas F 6-10 1⁄2 Benetton Treviso — Houston-bound. Here’s your basic Euro-overgrown small forward.

  21. PORTLAND — Nolan Smith G 6-1 1⁄2 Jr. Duke — Denver-bound with Miller as Trail Blazers land Felton.

  22. DENVER — Kenneth Faried F 6-6 Sr. Morehead St. — Somewhere between Dennis Rodman and Renaldo Balkman.

  23. HOUSTON (e, g) — Nikola Mirotic F 6-8 1⁄2 Real Madrid — Minnesota-bound, in 2016 when Euro deal’s up, for Jonny Flynn.

  24. OKLAHOMA CITY — Reggie Jackson G 6-1 1/2 Jr. Boston College — OKC, not Portland, gave him promise before he had knee scoped.

  25. BOSTON (f) — MarShon Brooks G 6-4 1⁄4 Sr. Providence — New Jersey-bound. Major scorer, yet to guard anyone.

  26. DALLAS (i) — Jordan Hamilton F 6-6 3⁄4 So. Texas — Big-time shooter, pain as freshman, got it together last season.

  27. NEW JERSEY (f) — JaJuan Johnson F 6-9 Sr. Purdue — Boston-bound. Good tab for team that needs to rebuild front line.

  28. CHICAGO (g, h) — Norris Cole G 6-2 Sr. Cleveland St. — Miami-bound as Pat Riley trades up for first piece in rebuilding.

  29. SAN ANTONIO — Cory Joseph G 6-3 Fr. Texas — As close as Spurs are to Texas, he’ll probably be George Hill Jr.

  30. CHICAGO Jimmy Butler F 6-7 Jr. Marquette — Well, it’s something: ESPN’S Bilas says “he’ll do no harm.”

TRADES: a-traded to Charlotte in a three-way trade with Milwaukee and Sacramento. b-traded to Sacramento in a three-way trade with Charlotte and Milwaukee. c-traded to San Antonio for G George Hill. d-traded to Milwaukee in a three-way trade with Charlotte and Sacramento. e-Minnesota and Houston traded selections. f-Boston and New Jersey traded selections. i-Dallas traded rights to Hamilton to Portland for Rudy Fernandez. h-Minnesota traded rights to Nikola Mirotic for the rights to G Norris Cole and the rights to the second-round (No. 43) pick.


Steve Jacob 6 years, 10 months ago

Hearing Rocket fans are upset with the Marcus pick because Nikola Vucevic was still out there, and they have no center with Ming probably done.

And Brandon Knight improves the Pistons defense by 10 points a game because Ben Gordon is out the door. Why does Joe Dumars still have a job giving him 58M?

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