NBA Draft Complete Report Card and Grades

By Lorenzo Tanos


#16 –  LucasNogueira, C, 7'0"-220, Estudiantes (Spain)

#17 – Dennis Schroder, PG, 6'2"-168, Phantoms Braunschweig (Germany)

#44 – Mike Muscala, C, 6'11"-239, Bucknell

The Hawks went big in the 2013 Draft while selecting two of the more highly-regarded international players who submitted their name to the draft pool.  The Brazilian Nogueira, an excellent shotblocker and athlete, is a bit of a project and may not be ready to sign with the Hawks this season, but if he does, he might be forced into playing a key role alongside Al Horford, either at the five or the four, as forward Josh Smith has agreed to sign with the Detroit Pistons.  Schroder possesses lightning quickness and some scoring potential, and he could make a good backup point guard to Jeff Teague.  Muscala, the second-rounder, averaged a double-double for Bucknell in the Patriot League, but looks like an end-of-the-bench NBA rookie at best.



#13 – Kelly Olynyk, C/F, 7'0"-240, Gonzaga

#53 – Colton Iverson, C, 7'0"-255, Colorado St.

The Celtics traded up for Olynyk, whom some believed got picked a bit too early in the draft.  With Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce now part of the Brooklyn Nets, it would appear that the Celtics are rebuilding with a younger roster, and Olynyk provides a good complement to one of last year's top picks for the C's, the bruising, wide-bodied Jared Sullinger.  That said, he'll likely come off the bench as a finesse-playing center/forward who can shoot and score.  Iverson works hard, but will probably replace Fab Melo as the Celtics' D-League prospect as the second Celtics first-rounder from 2012 could be playing a larger role in 2013-14.



#22 – Mason Plumlee, C/F, 6'10"-235, Duke

Mason Plumlee will join his older brother Miles in the NBA this season, and it goes without saying he's got more upside than the 2012 first-rounder and Indiana Pacers reserve.  That still isn't saying much, but he did average a double-double for Duke, and he can do a bit of everything at the four and five spots.  For the meantime, he should do more watching than playing, but for someone chosen late in the first round, he's a good, safe pick.



#4 – Cody Zeller, F/C, 7'0"-240, Indiana

Zeller, whose big brother Tyler was selected 17th in the first round of the 2012 Draft, is a good offensive center who needs to get stronger to become an elite big man in the NBA.  That said, he makes up for a lack of strength by being a smart player and one of the more agile and athletic bigs in the 2013 Draft, and he's a surefire upgrade over the likes of Byron Mullens, BismackBiyombo and Brendan Haywood.  The presence of Al Jefferson, who has agreed to a three-year deal with the Bobcats, should take away some of the pressure he may have to produce right away as a rookie.



#20 – Tony Snell, G/F, 6'7"-201, New Mexico

#49 – Erik Murphy, PF,6'10"-230, Florida

The Bulls needed a backup center at #20, but instead of going for someone like Mason Plumlee, they went ahead and got Tony Snell, a defensive-oriented wingman who may be a bit too similar to a player they already have on their roster as a key off-the-bench contributor – Jimmy Butler.   As for their second-rounder, Erik Murphy seems destined to follow in the footsteps of his father Jay, a backup NBA big man in the mid-‘80s.  He shoots well from outside, but doesn't offer much by way of rebounding or defense.



#1 – Anthony Bennett, PF/SF, 6'8"-240, UNLV

#19 – Sergey Karasev, SF, 6'7"-197, Triumph Lyubertsy (Russia)

#33 – Carrick Felix, SG, 6'6"-205, Arizona St.

Though the Cavs needed some frontcourt help with the first overall pick, most expected that would come in the form of Nerlens Noel, considering Anderson Varejao's continued injury problems.  Instead, they went with power forward Anthony Bennett, a quick, strong and offensively talented college four who was expected to go third to fifth by most experts.  Though this was a surprise selection, it won't be farfetched to see a Bennett/Tristan Thompson/Varejao starting frontcourt, but it still may have been better if the Cavs went for high-profile centers Noel or Alex Len instead.  Russian Sergey Karasev, unlike Bennett, is a natural small forward who can shoot the ball, and could even be an upgrade over incumbents Alonzo Gee and C.J. Miles.  Finally, Carrick Felix joins the team as a versatile shooting guard who rebounds well for his size and is a tough, uncompromising defender.  He has a good chance of making an impact as a reserve.



#18 – Shane Larkin, PG, 5'11"-180, Miami

#43 – Ricky Ledo, SG, 6'6"-195, Providence

Despite being one of the shorter players in the draft pool, the son of MLB Hall of Famer Barry Larkin has an impressive vertical leap to go with his quickness, though his size makes him an easy matchup on defense.  Offensively, he has a fairly polished game, and good aptitude for a point guard.  Larkin looks like a competent backup for the inconsistent Darren Collison.  Second-rounder Ricky Ledo is an interesting pick, mainly because the former McDonald's All-American did not play a minute of college ball for Providence due to  academic issues.  He's another good scorer who may be raw, but has a shot at cracking the lineup.



#46 – Erick Green, SG, 6'3"-191,Virginia Tech

#55 – Joffrey Lauvergne, F/C, 6'11"-240, Partizan (Serbia)

What's there to find out about these two second-rounders?  Green is the one we could be seeing off the Nuggets' bench – he was the leading scorer in NCAA Division I action last season, and he should help Denver's cause as a perimeter player.  With his size, he needs to develop some point guard skills, because 6'3" won't cut it at off-guard in the NBA.  Lauvergne showed some potential in his native France, in the Spanish leagues and in Serbia, but he's that type of late-second round international project you shouldn't expect to see in the NBA right off the bat, if at all.



#8 – Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, SG, 6'6"-204, Georgia

#37 – Tony Mitchell, PF/SF, 6'9"-236, North Texas

#56 – Peyton Siva, PG, 6'0"-180, Louisville

Last season, the Pistons had to make do with the progressively disappointing Rodney Stuckey, converted small forward Kyle Sigler and others at shooting guard.  Hence, Caldwell-Pope fills a need at the two, with good size, a knack for the long ball and some serious potential on the defensive end.  The arrival of “KCP" should also allow Brandon Knight to focus on his natural point guard role for the Pistons.  Mitchell, who had an off-year as a sophomore for North Texas, has great athleticism, but so does would-be free agent signee Josh Smith; that's definitely reduced his chances of cracking the lineup.  Siva, if anything, has a national championship as the Louisville Cardinals' starting point guard, and while he won't provide much on offense, he'll lock down on defense and show some pure playmaking skills.



#30 – Nemanja Nedovic, PG/SG, 6'4"-195, LietuvosRytas Vilnius (Lithuania)

This young man was dubbed by some as the “European Derrick Rose", and while that might sound like a huge reach, he's a good athlete and knows how to play the point guard spot, and could at least provide some depth as a second- or third-stringer behind Stephen Curry.  Nedovic's minutes will all depend on whether Jarrett Jack re-signs.



#34 – Isaiah Canaan, PG, 6'1"-195, Murray St.

When it comes to players picked in the second round, it's usually the little men and those with small forward height and a pure power forward game who don't make the cut.  Canaan is a 6'1" point guard out of a mid-major, and while he averaged over 21 ppg for the Racers, he might not have it in him to unseat Patrick Beverley as Jeremy Lin's backup.



#23 – Solomon Hill, SF, 6'7"-220, Arizona

Not a very smart pick for the Pacers, though they probably don't need as much as other teams at this point.  He deserves credit for developing a game more apt for his size and eliminating any tweener concerns, but he was expected to be a second-round pick, and may be one of those first-rounders who spend most of their rookie years in the D-League.



#25 – Reggie Bullock, SF, 6'7"-200, North Carolina

If the Pacers wanted a small forward, they could have gone with Bullock, but since they reached for Solomon Hill, the  ex-Tar Heel fell into the laps of the Clippers.  As small forward is a bit of an Achilles heel for the Clips (a past-his-prime Caron Butler, plus Matt Barnes, who may not return), Bullock could get some minutes with his versatility.  He can shoot, pass and defend, but his ballhandling skills are lacking.



#48 – Ryan Kelly, PF, 6'11"-230, Duke

The Lakers aren't the best team for a rookie to end up on, much less a late second-rounder.  And while Kelly played and started for a great collegiate program, he's a small forward trapped in a big man's body, and he doesn't have the defensive skills to make up for his shortcomings on the boards.  Even with Dwight Howard gone, he's D-League fodder.



#41 – Jamaal Franklin, SG, 6'5"-191, San Diego St.

#60 – Janis Timma, SF/SG, 6'7"-203, BK Ventsplis (Latvia)

The Grizzlies got themselves a huge steal at #41, as Jamaal Franklin was still available with 20 picks to go.  The natural comparison here is Kawhi Leonard, Franklin's former teammate with the Aztecs, as he's also an all-around player, a top-notch athlete and defender.

NBA Draft Complete Report Card and Grades
Mar 31, 2013; Indianapolis, IN, USA: Duke Blue Devils forward Ryan Kelly (34) shoots against the Louisville Cardinals in the first half during the finals of the Midwest regional of the 2013 NCAA tournament at Lucas Oil Stadium. Photo courtesy by Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports.

He may not have as much upside as Leonard, but he could be taking over from Tony Allen at off-guard in about a year or two.  Last-overall pick Timma, a scoring small forward, will probably stay in Latvia for the immediate foreseeable future.



#47 – Raulzinho Neto, PG, 6'2"-172, LagunAro GBC (Spain)

#50 – James Ennis, SF, 6'7"-210, Long Beach St.

What can you add to a team that just might make it the first NBA three-peat in a while?  There really isn't much lacking on the Heat as of now, and with that in mind, Brazilian national player Raul Neto may remain in Spain, while Long Beach State's James Ennis could sneak into the lineup as a third-string shooter/defender who can drive to the hoop.



#14 – Shabazz Muhammad, G/F, 6'6"-225, UCLA

#21 – Gorgui Dieng, C, 6'11"-245, Louisville

#52 – Lorenzo Brown, PG, 6'5"-186, North Carolina St.

The Timberwolves, who are coming off a disappointing, injury-filled 2012-13, had probably one of the best drafts in 2013, even if Muhammad is a boom-or-bust pick.  The man once called a “once-in-a-generation talent" is still, for what it's worth, a strong scorer and shooter and a well above-average athlete who could take some minutes away from Alexey Shved, Chase Budinger and J.J. Barea at the two spot.  Dieng, who played for the 2013 NCAA Championship-winning Louisville Cardinals, will be a defensive force behind Nikola Pekovic; it's worth noting the Wolves have just waived Greg Stiemsma, so they're obviously high on Dieng as a valuable source of backup minutes at the five.  Brown is a steal at 52nd overall, a big point guard who looks quite likely to make the roster, even as a third-stringer.



#15 – Giannis Antetokounmpo, SF, 6'9"-200, Filathilitikos (Greece)

#38 – Nate Wolters, PG, 6'5"-196, South Dakota St.

None of the internationals in the 2013 NBA Draft have as much upside – pardon that word again – than Antetokounmpo, a 6'9" do-it-all wingman with advanced skills as a ballhandler, superb athleticism and quickness and potential to contribute as a shooter.  Still, he's very, very raw as an 18-year-old second-division player in the Greek leagues, and need work in creating his own shot.  He just might benefit more from a couple years in Europe before joining the Bucks.  Second-rounder Nate Wolters was one of the nation's leading scorers, and could make the team as a solid role player at both guard positions, particularly the point.



#42 – Pierre Jackson, PG, 5'10"-180, Baylor

Normally, I don't consider veteran acquisitions made while trading picks on draft day, but Pierre Jackson, an athletic, if severely undersized scoring point guard for Baylor, is just icing on the cake.  Even if he doesn't make the newly-renamed Pelicans' roster, the big draft day prize was point guard Jrue Holiday, who had a breakout season for the Philadelphia 76ers in 2012-13; he was acquired from the Sixers for the sixth-overall pick, Nerlens Noel.  Holiday is a proven commodity, and his arrival promises a lot of excitement for a team that already has Eric Gordon, Anthony Davis and Ryan Anderson in the lineup, and maybe even a return to the Playoffs for New Orleans.



#24 – Tim Hardaway Jr., SG/SF,  6'6"-205, Michigan

The son of the legendary NBA point guard of the same name, Hardaway will likely be backing up Iman Shumpert and reigning Sixth Man of the Year J.R. Smith.  His athleticism and versatile offensive game makes him a nice fit for the Knicks, and he seems to be improving other aspects of his game.  When picking late in the first round, you want the best player available, and Hardaway was just that kind of player for the Knicks at #24.



#12 – Steven Adams, C, 7'0"-255, Pittsburgh

#26 – Andre Roberson, SF/PF, 6'7"-206, Colorado

#32 – Alex Abrines, SG/SF, 6'6"-190, FC Barcelona Regal (Spain)

#40 – Grant Jerrett, PF, 6'10"-232, Arizona

The Thunder needed more help at center, especially on the defensive end, and they got the man they want with Steven Adams, who entered the 2013 Draft following his freshman year at Pittsburgh. As such, he's still very raw, but he has an NBA body, above-average athleticism and the ability to contribute off the bench.  Just don't expect him to explode on offense, though.  More defense came in the form of Roberson, also a tough rebounder out of Colorado.  Unfortunately, he's woefully short and light for the four spot, has limited range and the Thunder may have been better served with guards like Archie Goodwin (whom they ironically picked, but lost via trade-up for Roberson) or Allen Crabbe.

The Thunder did get an off-guard in Abrines at #32, but the smooth-shooting Spaniard may need a few more years in Europe for seasoning.  Fortieth overall pick Grant Jerrett is another one-and-done guy, a great outside shooter for a big man, and probably someone more likely to get minutes than the tweener Roberson.



#2 – Victor Oladipo,  SG, 6'4"-215, Indiana

#51 – Romero Osby, PF/SF, 6'8"-240, Oklahoma

Wither Arron Afflalo?  Afflalo was a solid starter at shooting guard for the Magic, but Oladipo has even more potential as a defender, while showcasing an improved offensive game and a workmanlike approach to basketball.  He's NBA-ready at this point, and though he may go through the usual rookie struggles, they may not be as pronounced as they would be for others.  Osby is an undersized power forward who adds muscle to the Magic lineup, but he probably won't be good for anything more than third-string minutes as a rookie.



#6 – Nerlens Noel, C, 6'11"-228, Kentucky

#11 – Michael Carter-Williams, PG, 6'5"-187, Syracuse

It's interesting how things have turned out for Philly following the Jrue Holiday trade.  Noel, once thought as the most likely first-overall pick, could theoretically start right away at center or power forward, depending on Andrew Bynum's injury status.   Then again, Noel had his share of injury problems with the Wildcats, and while he's a terrific defender, his offense is considerably behind his defensive game.  Carter-Williams, on the other hand, was an elite point guard for Syracuse and an exceptional passer with great length and size, but his jumper and shooting stroke might not be NBA material yet (29% from three for the Orange), and while he averaged nearly three steals per game, he gambles too much and needs to adjust to NBA defensive sets due to Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim's insistence on the zone.  So while these are two blue-chip lottery selections for the Sixers, they may have been better off hanging on to Holiday and going for somebody like Steven Adams or even Kelly Olynyk at #11.



#5 – Alex Len, C, 7'1"-255, Maryland

#29 – Archie Goodwin, SG, 6'5"-189, Kentucky

#57 – Alex Oriakhi, PF, 6'9"-255, Connecticut

Some pundits considered Len a candidate to get picked first overall, but at #5, he's a steal of sorts for the Suns, who need a big man to relieve the suddenly disappointing MarcinGortat and possibly take over for him somewhere down the line.  Len provides defensive help right off the bat, and while his offense lags behind his defense at this point, he has the potential to be a good two-way center in a couple years.  One-and-done off-guard Archie Goodwin can slash and shoot, and is a great athlete, but needs to improve his jumper if he wants to become an impact player.  Finally, the other newcomer named Alex – Oriakhi, that is – is not much of an athlete or scorer, but could provide some defensive help at the four provided he makes the team.



#10 – C.J. McCollum, SG/PG, 6'3"-197, Lehigh

#31 – Allen Crabbe, SG, 6'6"-197, California

#39 – Jeff Withey, C, 7'0"-235, Kansas

#45 – Marko Todorovic, PF/C, 6'10"-245, Barcelona Basquet (Spain)

The Blazers continued infusing youth to their backcourt by picking McCollum at tenth overall, and considering Portland has Damian Lillard and Wesley Matthews with Eric Maynor coming off the bench, McCollum may have trouble getting minutes.  He's also quite undersized for the off-guard spot and lacks NBA point guard skills, and also coming off a season-ending foot injury that limited him to 12 games as a senior.  Still, he isn't that bad a pick at #10, even if it's highly unlikely he'll give the Blazers two straight Rookie of the Year winners.  Portland got a trio of picks in the second round, and #39 pick Jeff Withey may have the best chance of playing right away.  Withey is a legit seven-footer who can play defense, and he gives the Blazers some much-needed height and help in the middle.  Allen Crabbe, who normally would've been a steal at #31, might spend most of his time in the D-League instead due to a potential logjam at the two (Matthews, McCollum, Will Barton) and #45 pick Todorovic might remain in Europe for a while.



#7 – Ben McLemore, SG, 6'5"-197, Kansas

#36 – Ray McCallum Jr., PG, 6'3"-190, Detroit

Prior to the draft lottery, McLemore was expected by many to get selected first overall, but when Cleveland got the top pick, it became unlikely that they'd go for another off-guard following a strong rookie year from Dion Waiters.  As for McLemore, the Kings get a player compared favorably to an early-NBA career Ray Allen with his ability to hit the long bomb and fly to the hoop with equal ease.  He'll be an offensive force early on for the Kings, and could further reduce Marcus Thornton's role at the two.  McCallum, who played under his father at the University of Detroit, is a good value pick for a second-rounder, though he might be one of the odd men out as the Kings trim the fat from their reserve backcourt rotation.



#28 – Livio Jean-Charles, SF, 6'9"-217, ASVEL (France)

#58 – DeShaun Thomas, SF, 6'7"-220, Ohio St.

The Spurs had an interesting 2013 Draft, though with the 28th and 58th picks, this wasn't the kind of draft for San Antonio to get some good young replacements for their aging starters.  Jean-Charles, in particular, won't be playing just yet in the NBA; he's a good slasher and has good size for a small forward, but he's relatively obscure, and we'll just have to hope he's one of those international selections the Spurs luck out on.  Thomas was a far more known commodity, and a red-hot scorer for the Ohio State Buckeyes.  He's a steal at #58, and the Spurs just might have a place for him off the bench if he has a good summer league and training camp.



#9 – Trey Burke, PG, 6'0"-190, Michigan

#27 – Rudy Gobert, C, 7'1"-220, Cholet Basket (France)

The Jazz had to subsist with a gimpy Mo Williams and an aging Jamaal Tinsley at the point in 2012-13, and Burke just might have Damian Lillard-esque potential to step in right away and win Rookie of the Year honors.  After all, he and Michael Carter-Williams were arguably the best point guard prospects in the 2013 Draft.  But unlike MCW, Burke is NBA-ready as a scorer and a playmaker, which means a lot for the point guard-poor Jazz.  Gobert is a project with a ridiculous 7'9" wingspan, yet an extremely raw game that may take years to develop.



#3 – Otto Porter, SF, 6'9"-198, Georgetown

#35 – Glen Rice Jr., SG/SF, 6'6"-215, Rio Grande (NBDL), Georgia Tech

Washington selected two Juniors in the 2013 Draft, and the one expected to contribute immediately is NOT the son of one of the best pure shooters ever to suit up in the NBA.  But we'll get to him in just a bit.  Otto Porter Jr. fills a need for the Wizards, and a huge one, as the Wiz had to rely on a past-his-prime Trevor Ariza and journeyman Garrett Temple at the three for most of 2012-13.  He has a good, though not great jumper, and will be expected to contribute the most on defense, though again, he's far from being a bad scorer.  Rice, whose dad was, as mentioned, one of the hottest NBA gunners of the ‘90s, has inherited his old man's shooting ability, and looks to be a better athlete.  He's got a chance to get some minutes off the bench, and his one year of D-League experience certainly counts for something.


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