Alex Len is a bit puzzling, considering who was left on the board.
UPDATE: The Suns have selected Archie Goodwin with their 29th pick, moving up one pick after a trade with Golden State.
UPDATE 2: The Suns have selected Alex Oriakhi with their 57th and final pick.
And now, Suns fans have another reason to raise hell.
Even with Nerlens Noel and Ben McLemore still on the board in a very strange 2013 NBA Draft, the Suns went and took center Alex Len.
I’m not totally against Len as a player, don’t get me wrong. But with Noel and McLemore there… wow.
And Suns fans are not happy, at least judging by Twitter. In fact, I even saw “#BringBackBlanks.” Yeah, THAT upset.
Here’s what I said about Len in our draft profile:
I’m a big fan of Len. He’s probably my second or third favorite realistic pick for the Suns at this point.
The Suns seem willing to run again, or so Hornacek’s conditioning drills would imply. He’s the guy who can fit in that system. And if you want to slow it down and be more defensive-minded, he can do that too. The one thing this draft can boast is two natural shot-blockers in Len and Noel, something that doesn’t grow on trees. He fills a position of need, assuming Marcin Gortat gets moved (and that would be likely if the Suns took Len) and has the makings of a special player.
It’s really rare to find a seven-footer with the finesse yet defensive ability Len has. It would take some polishing, but the Suns aren’t ready to win right now anyway. He interviewed well at the combine and despite his ankle surgery, has climbed many draft boards. So much so that Cleveland has been rumored to be considering him first overall, even over Noel. There’s a good shot he’s gone by the time the Suns pick.
Note the word “realistic.” Nobody saw McLemore being there, let alone Noel.
For their second pick, the Suns traded up one spot (yes, one spot) to get a guard in Goodwin.
Goodwin is a pick being questioned by the national media because many believe he would have fallen well into the second. The local media loves him. Go figure.
Reportedly the Suns intend to play him at the point because at this stage he’s pretty raw and a very bad shooter. He gets to the line, but is pretty bad there. He doesn’t shoot many threes and turns the ball over, so he does need some work.
It’s unknown right now what the Suns traded to move up for him.
Oriakhi is a 6-foot-9, 255-lb. forward-center out of Missouri. He transferred from Connecticut after their bad APR caused them to be ineligible for the postseason.
He’s an athletic big with a good wingspan. He rebounds well and should be the source of some second-chance points for the Suns if he plays. He’s a great free throw shooter, but is bad at shooting from beyond 15 feet.
Brandon is a 24-year-old Arizona native who recently separated from the Army after three and a half years of service, including one in Afghanistan. He previously attended Arizona State University to study print journalism. You can follow him on Twitter @brandonharaway.
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