The 2013 NBA draft had to be one of the most unpredictable in the history of the NBA. The Cavaliers kept everyone in suspense with the #1 pick and, when it was announced, they shocked a ton of people. Each year a handful of rookies stand out because their teams did good the year before. The unpredictability of this Draft and the prospects in it will make it hard to see who actually won and lost with their picks. The Sports Script doesn’t want to wait a few years and give the grades of these guys; I’ve done my best to break down this draft to name the teams I think were winners and losers.
The Minnesota Timberwolves are the winners of this draft. They drafted Trey Burke and sent him to Utah for two picks, namely Shabazz Muhammed and Gorgui Deng. They also picked up Lorenzo Brown and Bojan Dubljevic in the 2nd round of the draft. Shabazz fills a huge need for the Wolves at the SG/SF spot and he will make an immediate impact for the team. Shabazz, playing alongside Ricky Rubio, will allow for him to take a ton of open shots where his game fits best. Deng is almost a steal in the 20’s; he’s a guy the Wolves can expect to step in right away to defend and rebound for them.
(IT’S A TIE IN MY BOOK)
I was stunned when the Charlotte Bobcats took Cody Zeller with the 4th pick. I’m not a big believer in Zeller. While he is athletic, there are many more players on the board that are much better. Zeller is going to take a few years to develop in the NBA; the Bobcats do not have a few years, as they are terrible and need help now.
The Orlando Magic took Victor Oladipo (who could be a star in the NBA), yet they passed on Ben McLemore who was still on the board. I grade Ben way higher that Oladipo and will question this pick for a while. The Magic needs someone who is proven, and I don’t think Oladipo is that one. If you ask me, the Magic passed on an All-Star for a guy who will be average in the NBA.
THE REST OF THE TEAMS
The Atlanta Hawks knew this draft was bad, so they just took players from overseas and grabbed two really good ones. They got Lucas Nogueri and Dennis Schroeder. Both can start in the NBA in the very near future. The 2nd round allowed the Hawks to grab Mike Muscala, one of college basketball’s most productive players last year.
HAWKS DRAFT GRADE – B+
The Boston Celtics ended up with Kelly Olynyk in the 1st round, and Colton Iverson in the 2nd round. I love the pick of Olynyk as he’s not a player who will bang bodies inside, but instead is a big man who can shoot from anywhere. The 2nd round pick, Colton Iverson, is a player I know little about and don’t expect we will ever hear the name again. The draft grade won’t consider the trade they made, which I see as a huge fail.
CELTICS DRAFT GRADE – B
The Brooklyn Nets drafted Mason Plumlee. I can’t help but think they only settled for him because of Deng being off the board. Plumlee will probably play second-string and should do fine. I don’t think he’s a star or a bust, but he’s nothing more than an average back up.
NETS DRAFT GRADE – C
The Chicago Bulls selected Tony Snell in the 1st round and then grabbed Eric Murphy in the 2nd. The Bulls really need someone who can shoot the basketball, and they grabbed two shooters. I think Snell fits the Bulls style tremendously and can help them next year.
BULLS DRAFT GRADE – B+
The Cleveland Cavaliers shocked everyone by taking Anthony Bennett #1 overall, and grabbed Sergey Karsev in the later part of the 1st round. The 2nd round saw the Cavs grab Carrick Felix. The 1st round picks the Cavs grabbed are two solid players who can help contribute right away. Bennett may turn out to be the best player in this year’s draft.
CAVALIERS DRAFT GRADE – A
The Dallas Mavericks took Shane Larkin in the 1st round and then Ricky Ledo in round 2. The Mavericks traded down a couple of times, with the goal of reducing the amount of money they would owe to their pick, as they prepare for free agency. The Mavericks 1st round pick, Larkin, is nothing special but he can shoot. At best, he’s probably going to be a backup. Ledo is a great second round pick and can flat-out shoot the rock.
MAVERICKS DRAFT GRADE – C
The Denver Nuggets traded out of the 1st round, and picked up Darrell Arthur with a trade. Arthur is just as good as any guy they could have selected at end of the 1st round. The 2nd round picks of Erick Green and Joffrey Lauvergne are very average guys who may not make the team.
NUGGETS DRAFT GRADE – C
The Detroit Pistons grabbed Kentavious Caldwell-Pope in the 1st round. They also made two solid 2nd round picks, Tony Mitchell and Peyton Siva. Pope would not have been my first choice, but at least he’s a good shooter. Mitchell, to me, is the highlight of the draft for them. He is a steal for a 2nd round pick and could prove to be a very solid NBA player.
PISTONS DRAFT GRADE – B
The Golden State Warriors selected Nemanja Nedovic with their 1st round pick. Nedovic isn’t one of the top international prospects out of this draft but he gives them a solid defender. The Warriors hope this young guard can play in the NBA as a backup guard and, if that’s the case, they did well.
WARRIORS DRAFT GRADE – C
The Houston Rockets only had a second round pick and selected Isaiah Canaan. Canaan could have very easily gone in the 1st round, but dropped to the Rockets in the early 2nd. I have personal feelings for Canaan; he played college ball about 30 minutes from my home, and I believe he’s a guy that can back up Jeremy Lin right away in the NBA. I can personally say no one will work harder to be better in the NBA than Canaan.
ROCKETS DRAFT GRADE – B
The Indiana Pacers used their 1st round pick on Solomon Hill. I believe they took him because of his age and experience and because they need players who are mature and ready to go now. They could have probably gone for Hill later on, or chosen a guard, but they took a safer route in my opinion. Hill will be an average small forward in the NBA.
PACERS DRAFT GRADE – D
The Los Angeles Clippers went with Reggie Bullock who can flat-out shoot the ball. He’s going to be a very solid shooter in the NBA. I expect he will pick up the slack since the Clippers will probably move Bledsoe at some point, and Billups will become a free agent.
CLIPPERS DRAFT GRADE – C
The Los Angeles Lakers took Ryan Kelly as their 2nd round pick. He didn’t play a full college season but is a pretty good ball handler. Although we haven’t seen much of this player, he is full of potential for sure.
LAKERS DRAFT GRADE – B
The Memphis Grizzlies came into the night with three 2nd round picks and ended up leaving with 2. They selected Jamaal Franklin and Janis Timma from Latvia. Franklin is the biggest steal of the night in the 2nd round and is an absolute perfect fit for the Grizzlies. He’s a guy who can lead in almost all offensive categories and plays hard defense which fits Memphis perfect.
GRIZZLIES DRAFT GRADE – A
The Miami Heat, the champions of the NBA, took James Ennis in the 2nd round, and I have no idea why. They should probably have gone after a big man.
HEAT DRAFT GRADE – F
The Milwaukee Bucks are rebuilding with Monta Ellis being gone, and Jennings probably not far behind. They selected Giannis Antekounmpo in the 1st and then Nate Wolters in the 2nd Round. I love what the Bucks did because I feel these guys are going to be good NBA players. You will see terrible grades all across the board by most writers for this team, but I’m a believer in Giannis and I’m going to grade them high.
BUCK DRAFT GRADE – A
The New Orleans Pelicans landed Jrue Holiday for Noel in their original pick, and grabbed Pierre Jackson in the 2nd round. Jrue is a stud in the NBA and they made a great deal to land him. Jackson is a great pick in the 2nd round and allows some flexibility with Vasquez, who they may trade to receive perimeter help now. The Pelicans did a lot of things I like in this draft.
PELICANS DRAFT GRADE – B
The New York Knicks got Tim Hardaway, Jr. in the 1st round with their pick. Hardaway has a ton of potential that is unproven to this point. This pick will probably take a while to grade out, but he’s a good fit for the Knicks style.
KNICKS DRAFT GRADE – C
The Oklahoma City Thunder tried to move up all night, but never could find the right partner. They took Steven Adams and Andre Roberson in the 1st round, and Alex Abines and Grant Jerrett in the 2nd. Adams is a raw pick who is underdeveloped, but has the most potential of any player in the draft. The Thunder reached for a lot of their picks in this draft. Robinson is a good defender, who doesn’t score a lot, and I think they could have used someone who can score.
THUNDER DRAFT GRADE – C
The Philadelphia 76ers grabbed Noel in a trade and then took Michael Carter-Williams in the 1st round. They used the 2nd round pick to get Arsalan Kazemi. The 76ers grabbed two guys in the 1st round that they can potentially build their team with years to come. I don’t like moving Jrue, but you never know what might happen with these two guys. I like the trade right now as long as they are willing to wait a few years to win.
76ERS DRAFT GRADE – B
The Phoenix Suns grabbed Alex Len and Archie Goodwin with their 1st round selections, and took Alex Oriakhi in the 2nd round. Len is the future at Center for the Suns. Goodwin might not look so great right now, but he’s very young and could pan out after a few seasons as he can shoot the rock really well.
SUNS DRAFT GRADE – B
The Portland Trailblazers ended up with CJ McCollum in the 1st round and selected 3 other players in the 2nd. Those picks were Jeff Withey, Allen Crabbe, and Marko Todorovic. The Blazers got a ton of value in the 2nd round, and their 1st round pick is going to be a stud. McCollum and Lillard in a backcourt will lack size, but they have the potential to put up a ton of points together making it tough to defend.
TRAILBLAZERS DRAFT GRADE – A
The Sacramento Kings bring home Ben McLemore and then chose Ray McCallum in the 2nd round. McLemore going to the Kings is awesome for Kings fans; they got an All-Star of the future. Ray McCallum got a lot of buzz at the draft combine and could turn out to be really solid as well. The Kings had a very good draft as this franchise tries to turn around.
KINGS DRAFT GRADE – A
The San Antonio Spurs drafted Livio Jean-Charles who will probably be a productive member of the Spurs in about 3 years. He’s not going to be playing next year, but he will be seeing time in the future. This pick can’t be graded now but, of course, we have to as that’s the point of this article.
SPURS DRAFT GRADE – C
The Utah Jazz got the man they wanted in Trey Burke and then grabbed Rudy Robert. Burke is arguably the best player in this draft and will play right away for the Jazz. Gobert is a pick that is hard to understand as they have both Derrick Favors and Enes Kanter who have showed signs throughout the year of being really solid. The Jazz is in a good position to be a playoff team in the future after this draft.
JAZZ DRAFT GRADE – A
The Washington Wizards got the guy they targeted in Otto Porter, while grabbing Glen Rice, Jr. in the 2nd round. Porter fits the Wizards need more than any other player. They have to be happy with getting him as they have an awesome young core of guys now. Rice, Jr. in the 2nd round isn’t a bad pick either, as he could be a solid backup guard who can score.
WIZARDS DRAFT GRADE – A
The Toronto Raptors tried to grab a draft pick, but were unsuccessful in doing so.
This draft was probably the most unpredictable one ever, but it was a ton of fun. I can’t wait to see how these players pan out for their teams in the future.