It’s a little less than an hour before tonight’s NBA Draft, and this should have probably been done days ago, but we wanted to use our undeniable RTC expertise when it comes to projecting college hoops talent to the pros so we can say “told ya so” when the one undervalued player we said would be a star pans out (while the other ten we said would be don’t, but let’s not quibble). We’ll use Andy Katz’s final mock draft from this morning, and we’re only going to evaluate college players (because we’ve seen them play for at least one year). The criteria is BOOM or BUST – either that player is undervalued or overvalued based on his selection. That’s it. Here we go…
1. Blake Griffin, Oklahoma - BOOM, although the fact that he’s going to ClipperLand means drug addiction and/or horrific injury. Bill Simmons agrees.
2. Hasheem Thabeet, UConn – BUST, his offensive game won’t develop any further and he’s no Dikembe.
4. Tyreke Evans, Memphis – BUST, not seeing it at this selection; opposing defenses can lay off of him out to 18 feet.
5. James Harden, Arizona St. – BOOM, a Joe Johnson/Monta Ellis clone. Kid can really play.
6. Stephen Curry, Davidson – BUST, limitless range but really, #6? Too many question marks to be this high.
7. Jordan Hill, Arizona – BUST, nice player but he’s not even as good as Big Baby.
8. Jrue Holiday, UCLA – BUST, classic example of being a better athlete than player.
9. Demar DeRozan, USC – BOOM, DeRozan really came on at the end of the season and appears poised to break out.
10. Jonny Flynn, Syracuse – BUST, is Flynn really the best true point in this draft? No way.
11. Terrence Williams, Louisville – BUST, seems like the kind of player who will be out of the league in 3 years (does everything well, nothing great).
12. Gerald Henderson, Duke – BOOM, second best guard in the draft behind Harden.
13. DeJuan Blair, Pittsburgh – HEDGE, this is about the right position for an undersized beast like Blair.
14. Earl Clark, Louisville – BOOM, should have been higher but has a reputation for being lazy. Will shed that and become an excellent NBAer.
15. Austin Daye, Gonzaga – BUST, we used to love this guy, but he hasn’t shown much improvement in two years of college. We don’t believe in him.
16. BJ Mullens, Ohio St. – HUGE BUST, this is a joke. Either he’ll be washing cars in two years with Patrick O’Bryant or turn into Chris Kaman, who knows?
17. Ty Lawson, UNC – BOOM, he’s proven that he’s a winner and has improved his game substantially. Could be TJ Ford w/o the back problems.
18. James Johnson, Wake Forest – BOOM, has a reputation for being lazy, but he’s silky smooth at his size and will succeed in this league.
19. Tyler Hansbrough. UNC – HEDGE, we all know what kind of player he’ll be. Average at best.
20. Sam Young, Pittsburgh – BOOM, an absolute steal at this pick; Young could end up being a star.
21. Jeff Teague, Wake Forest – BOOM, would have been a lottery pick had he not packed in the second half of the year; the talent and athleticism is apparent.
24. Eric Maynor, VCU - HEDGE, nice pickup for this position.
25. Jon Brockman, Washington – BUST, sorry, but Brockman just isn’t NBA material in the long run.
26. Toney Douglas, Florida St. – HEDGE, could go either way here, but we’d expect Douglas to find a niche in the League.
27. Darren Collison, UCLA – BUST, Collison has always struck us as someone who should have been better than he was.
29. Nick Calathes, Florida – BOOM, Calathes will find a way to make himself a good pro if he decides to play in good ole USA instead of Greece.
30. DaJuan Summers, Georgetown – BUST, but it’s worth a gamble given his natural abilities. Could become a defensive stalwart at some point if he tried.