With the NBA Draft quickly approaching, there is always buzz as to what the potential headlines might be. Due to a threatened lockout last season, many talented players stayed in school for an extra year, making this year’s class very talented. Here are 5 things to keep an eye on while preparing and watching the Draft this Thursday night.
The chances are pretty significant that one of these wing players will be dealt by the end of Draft Night. All three are very good players, but for various reasons, they all seem to be on the trading block. The Warriors and Raptors are teams that have reportedly had interest in all three of these players, which they could potentially acquire with a high draft pick. If I had to pick one, I would say Luol Deng is the most likely to be dealt; his $13 million salary for next season is a lot for a team that will struggle without Derrick Rose for most of the season.
Bobcats trading down
After a historically awful season, the Bobcats didn’t even land the number one overall pick to draft big man Anthony Davis. With the number two pick, it looks like the Bobcats might look to trade down for multiple assets, perhaps a lower first round pick and a young player or two. Outside of Anthony Davis, nobody in this draft seems good enough to really help fix this franchise by themselves. If they could move down in the lottery, maybe get a second first round pick and a young player to add to Henderson, Walker and Biyombo, it won’t be a terrible start.
Celtics trading up
With the 21st and 22nd overall picks, it’s unlikely that the Celtics will stay put. It’s still unclear what direction they will go in next year, but regardless, moving into the lottery and getting a building block for the future should be the way to go. Look for them to package both picks and find someone to put with Rondo and Bradley.
Kyle Lowry trade
He basically packed his bags after questioning Coach McHale a little while ago. It’s been rumored that Toronto is interested in the Houston point guard, which could be a decent fit. Lowry is a pretty good player, and could definitely help a team. It just appears that his time with the Rockets is over.
Jared Sullinger will be a bargain for someone
Following reports of being red flagged by doctors for a serious back condition, Jared Sullinger has not even been invited to attend the Draft. His stock is falling, and it looks like the only team that might take him in the lottery is Detroit. If he gets past them, he’ll fall into the late teens or twenties, where somebody will make a great pick. At that point in the draft, you could get a reliable rotation player at a cheap price for the next couple of years. This situation is fairly similar to DeJuan Blair a few years back, when the Spurs took him late, which proved to be a strong value pick.
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