Thursday, June 28, 2007

Live Blog: NBA Draft

I'm going to try and do a live blog on the first round of the NBA Draft. It should be exciting as the Blazers have the first pick and are in prime position to dominate the league for years to come.

7:37 pm -
The luckiest guy of the night is Petteri Koponen of Finland. He is in the building along with the rest of the Finnish National Team apparently. Well, that is all for me tonight. I will enjoy looking at the list of guys that left early but did not get picked in the first round. Usually that is a bad deal. Sometimes it does workout though. Ask Gilbert Arenas who was able to become a free agent a year earlier than the 1st round guys. Have a good night. I certainly will after the Blazers pulled their moves.

7:33 pm
- The last pick of the 1st round is 2 minutes away. Let's get it going Stern.

7:30 pm
- The Suns select Alando Tucker with the 29th pick. He was the Big Ten player of the year and was a great player. I agree with Vitale's assertion that he will be a good fit in Phoenix. Look for him to put up some of the better numbers among rookies being a part of the Suns scoring offense. Maybe a sleeper pick for rookie of the year?

7:25 pm
- Tiago Splitter from Brazil is picked by the Spurs. Whoop-dee-do.

7:22 pm
- I predict the Spurs will select a foreign-born player that will only make me hate them more. He will be incredibly boring to watch and remind me too much about soccer.

7:19 pm
- Arron Afflalo of UCLA is the 27th pick. I don't think he is going to be all that good but he made a good choice in leaving early. Nothing suggests to me he would have improved his draft stock by staying for his senior year. Afflalo's performances against Florida the last 2 years make me think he will be a decent guy off the bench in the NBA at best.

7:14 pm
- I hope Yi is a total bust. More talk about him trying to pretend he is big-time. He has no right to demand where he plays. Putting up good numbers in the Chinese Basketball League means nothing to me. Shutup and show up to Milwaukee, Yi. If you don't I will personally make sure your experience in NBA arenas away from home will be miserable.

7:12 pm
- Nice! The Rockets select Aaron Brooks of Oregon with the 26th pick. He went through a lot in his Oregon career and I'm glad to see him get a guaranteed contract. Rick Adelman who lived in Portland this last year may have had a big role in this pick. Brooks had an awesome senior year and put the Ducks on his shoulders countless times. He will certainly be missed in Eugene but being picked in the 1st round is great.

7:10 pm
- ESPN needs to stop stalling. The Rockets time has expired. Notifying me of an upcoming WNBA game is insulting. I'm taking time to watch the NBA Draft and they waste my time with women's basketball crap.

7:05 pm - The Jazz are up next. They choose Morris Almond of Rice. I saw him play against the Ducks this year. He was without question the only good player on that team and they took the Ducks to overtime early in the year. Almond appeared to be able to score at will. This pick does not make me like the Jazz more though. I still find them only slightly more exciting than the Spurs.

6:58 pm - The Suns select Rudy Fernandez of Spain for the Blazers. This makes two Spanish players in the Blazers backcourt. Again, I'm not crazy about the Euro players but whatever. Now they say he won't even be here. I don't think Paul Allen knew that. When they showed the Blazers draft room Paul Allen looked befuddled. I guess him saying something like, "What the hell did we just buy from the Suns?"

6:56 pm - Having one of the richest men in the world own your favorite team is fun. The Blazers just bought the Suns draft pick. I did not even know that could happen. Let's see who they can find with the #24 pick.

6:52 pm - The Knicks take Wilson Chandler from DePaul. That is exactly who Spike Lee predicted would be picked. I guess that explains why he is so in love with Isiah. Isiah lets him know about things before they happen.

6:50 pm - Spike Lee is happy about the Randolph trade. Let him be as far as I'm concerned. He is singing Isiah's praises so he must be enjoying some drinks as part of his draft experience. I however am not and am getting a little antsy. Once the last pick in the 1st round is made I'm jumping in the pool.

6:47 pm - Jared Dudley is the 22nd pick by the Bobcats. Dudley will never win any awards for being good looking but the guy made plays. He doesn't really look like a stud in his uniform but he was the ACC player of the year. Anyone in the ACC that does not play home games in the state of North Carolina and wins the POY award must be good.

6:45 pm - Rod Thorn says the Nets are not concerned about Williams' character issues. One of the reasons was his score on the SAT. Not sure being concerned about SAT scores and using them as a judge of character is a good idea for NBA teams.

6:42 pm - Trade Alert! Daequan Cook is selected by the Sixers at 21 and immediately traded to the Heat for Jason Smith. In my opinion Cook is the ultimate project. He wasn't that impressive for Ohio State this year. Bilas says, "Tremendous upside." Yikes, whenever I hear that I get a little nervous. Luckily, no team I care about took the chance on Cook.

6:41 pm - Mark Jackson rips on the Lakers pick. I like that a lot. A lot better than I like him being an announcer at the Finals.

6:35 pm - The Heat select Jason Smith. I have heard that Smith is a really polished player. Most Smiths are so that shouldn't be a surprise. Wow, didn't realize this guy was 7'0" tall. Had some pretty impressive moves in the highlight reel. Based on the little bit I have seen my bold prediction is that Smith will be better than Jianlian.

6:34 pm - Just took a brownie break. I should be set for the remaining 11 picks. Let's get them over with Stern.

6:29 pm - The 19th pick is Javaris Crittenton. I know nothing about Crittenton and hate the Lakers. Next pick please.

6:28 pm - Stephen A. Smith is back on the good side. Pointing out the obvious that Phil Jackson has only won titles with the greatest players the NBA has ever seen is refreshing to hear. He has won a lot but he has had a lot to work with.

6:24 pm - Looks like Belinelli might wear make-up during games. At least that is what his highlight tape and headshot suggest. Good luck impressing the people of Oakland with make-up.

6:22 pm - The team that made part of the playoffs bearable is on the clock. The 18th pick by the Warriors is Marco Belinelli from Italy. I'm not a huge fan of the international players so know nothing about this guy and likely never will.

6:16 pm - Sean Williams is the 17th selection. I don't know much about a guy that did not play this year. As a Blazers fan I am not too crazy about picking up players that are ultra-talented but have a questionable past. Good luck to the Nets I suppose.

6:14 pm - The Blazers have found someone dumb enough to acquire Zach Randolph. Is it any surprise that it was Isiah Thomas? I like Channing Frye's work ethic and if I'm not mistaken the Blazers get rid of the last holdover from the Jail Blazers era. Not sure Steve Francis has much left but now the young guys won't have Randolph screwing them up. Let the Knicks fans be excited about Randolph. I am excited he is gone so it's a win-win at this point.

6:13 pm - Stuart Scott asked a weird question to Nick Young about his deceased brother and was all in his face when he was doing it.

6:10 pm - Props to the Wizards for making their pick with :42 left on the clock. Nick Young is the 16th pick and it will be fun to see him and Arenas together. Young seems to be a colorful guy so there will likely be some great YouTube footage of the two of them next year. The greatest dunk I have ever seen in person was by Young on an unfortunate member of the Ducks two years ago (#42 if you check last year's roster).

6:05 pm - Stuckey goes to the Pistons. There were rumors that he was given a guarantee by the Pistons that he would be picked by them. The Pistons always denied it. It doesn't matter though. He seems like he is a good offensive player, which is something most teams in the NBA need.

6:02 pm - Stuckey and Young are the last two guys in the green room. I can say with certainty that Young is a baller. As I saw it he was the best NBA-type player in the Pac-10 this year. I saw every team play at least two times and it wasn't even close. As for Stuckey he played 2 or 3 minutes against the Ducks in a preseason game due to an injury. It was a major disappointment since the Ducks had the weakest preseason schedule ever and he was the only Pac-10 type player the Mac Court faithful could have seen before the conference schedule.

6:00 pm - Thornton and I are the same age. Wow! That is old for the NBA. Much credit goes to Florida State for keeping this guy in school. I'm absolutely blown away that an NBA rookie out of college is my age.

5:58 pm - The Clippers take Al Thornton at number 14. Being that he did not play at an ACC school located in North Carolina I did not catch much of this guy. From what I hear he is a great athlete and offensive player. His highlight package is very impressive.

5:53 pm - Julian Wright is selected 13th. Poor guy has to go to New Orleans. Nothing about playing in a city that doesn't appear to be financially stable enough to support the Hornets and the Saints would interest me. His style leads me to believe he will be a bust. A lot of guys are athletic and can't shoot. If the guy could hit a jumper he might work out but I have my doubts.

5:51 pm - Did Billy Knight of the Hawks have the old school mutton chop sideburns? I'm watching it on HD but can't tell if it was shadowing.

5:48 pm - Word of advice to the NBA. Please eliminate all commercials about Tim Duncan and the Spurs during the Draft. Watching clips of him could only be made worse if it was followed by women's hoops clips.

5:45 pm - The 12th pick by the Sixers is Thaddeus Young. Must admit I know next to nothing about him.

5:44 pm - Stephen A. Smith has gone back to his old ways. He said with a straight face that Maurice Cheeks is a great coach. If he is a great coach, I was a great Spanish student. Cheeks is terrible and the record proves it. Someone please explain to me how he could possibly be considered a decent coach, let alone a great coach.

5:38 pm - Acie Law IV is the 11th pick by the Hawks. The experts say they needed a point guard and this guy can flat out play. Probably a good idea for the Hawks to pick an experienced college point guard. I think he will be better than Conley.

5:36 pm - I rarely agree with Stephen A. Smith but his knocking of the Noah pick is commendable. Nobody else on the broadcast wants to say the truth. Bilas likes 'energy' and that likely is why he never made it passed college. 'Energy' doesn't do much in the NBA if you ask me.

5:35 pm - John Paxson just picked Noah with the 9th pick. I really don't think that deserves him being interviewed. Paxson = Moron, unless he is able to find a superstar in the coming weeks.

5:32 pm - Well, the in-laws are pumped with the pick but I think Hawes has a great future. The Kings like offense so he should fit in. I realize Hawes won't be playing against the Ducks but his moves in Mac Court were smooth and polished. In the right system, I think the Kings are that, he will do very well. He will be far better than Noah, hands down.

5:31 pm - The hometown Kings are up and my father-in-law and brother-in-law are fired up they do not have to worry about Noah being the pick. That's right my draft party has ballooned to 3 people. I hate the Kings but must agree with that feeling.

5:28 pm - Noah is pumped right now but Mr. Green better inform him that the NBA does drug testing. And it likely is a bit more stringent than whatever tests he took at Florida.

5:24 pm - The 9th pick is Joakim Noah. He will make the Blazers debacle of drafting Sam Bowie way back when look good. If he scores more than 10 points in a game I will be shocked. His outfit doesn't impress me and now Isiah doesn't look like as much of a moron. Mark my words Noah is the undisputed bust of this draft. If he played for a middle of the road college team he would be playing in the NBDL next year. Billy Donovan and his teammates should split half of Noah's first paycheck. Noah will be a bum!

5:22 pm - Thanks to the brilliance of Isiah Thomas the Bulls are picking next. Thomas' genius will not be fully appreciated until... never.

5:18 pm - Jordan stays in the UNC family and takes Brandan Wright. He seemed like a great player in college. Some of his workouts didn't impress but the dude is 6'10" and runs like a gazelle.

5:17 pm - With the 8th pick the Bobcats take... Boo! Rachel Nichols has some face time right when the clock runs out. Get her out of the broadcast, I want Stern to give me the picks on time.

5:15 pm - I cannot stand the Home Run Derby commercial.

5:13 pm - Michael Jordan has 3 minutes to make a pick. Let's hope he doesn't crap himself like he did when drafting for the Wizards (see Brown, Kwame).

5:11 pm - The Timberwolves are on the clock. Kevin McHale has decided Corey Brewer is worth the 7th pick. I think Brewer is awesome. Saw him in St. Louis at the Elite Eight and let me tell you this guy is the skinniest 6'8" guy I have ever seen.

5:06 pm - How in the hell do the Chinese think they can strong-arm the NBA? They think they can tell teams where he is going to play? Screw the Chinese basketball people. Just be happy the lies about age weren't held against him. Only John Elway can get away with telling a team he doesn't want to play for them.

5:03 pm - The Bucks select Yi Jianlian of China with the 6th pick. He claims to be 19 but most everyone believes the Chinese are cheaters and he is in fact 22. I don't advocate that type of deception and I hope the Chinese flop in the Olympics as a result.

5:00 pm - Green and Durant on the same squad should be good base for them to build with. The question everyone will be posing is, How long will the team be in Seattle? Personally, I could care less.

4:57 pm - Ray Allen is headed to Boston. Sucks to be him. The Celtics have orders to draft Jeff Green for the Sonics with the 5th pick and they do. Green definitely did the smart thing by staying in the draft. He was one of the last, if not the last, to confirm he was staying in.

4:53 pm - Mike Conley, Jr. drafted 4th. Not sure I'm as crazy about him as a lot of people. I know of a lot of point guards that can penetrate and have a broke jump shot. Life in the NBA is going to be a little bit different than the Big Ten. I think he will be good but I'm not sure he is worth a 4th pick. In my not so expert opinion he is the Ted Ginn, Jr. of the NBA Draft.

4:51 pm - The Hawks have a new logo and it looks awful. It should be on the side of a high school football helmet.

4:48 pm - Al Horford goes to the Hawks at 3. I think that is a great pick. In my opinion he is the Florida Gator that is most ready for the NBA. Apparently Jay Bilas agrees. He is an absolute beast and can dunk a basketball. Something Oregon Duck fans have never seen from a big man.

4:45 pm - Durant downplayed his draft combine performance by saying he just plays ball. Great answer. Kevin Pritchard the Blazers GM is on the TV looking like a genius with the Oden pick as far as I'm concerned. He is certainly trying to figure out how to get something else done with the 4 2nd round picks.

4:44 pm - The Sonics made the hardest decision of the night by picking Kevin Durant at number 2. Interesting to find out what they do later in the draft.

4:41 pm - Sonics looking to trade Ray Allen to the Celtics.

4:39 pm - I would usually hate a guy that uses hand sanitizer but Oden can use whatever hygeine product he wants. Oden had to answer some softball questions from Stuart Scott and did a decent job.

4:36 pm - The Blazers have selected Greg Oden with the 1st pick. It is now official. A day many Blazers fans never thought would happen given the last 5 years or so. Things are looking up. Oden couldn't look any better in the Blazers hat. A lot of white guys in the Blazers draft room.

4:33 pm - The Blazers are on the clock.

(Image from 'rush the court'.)


Dadroza said...

Great day, The Beast in the middle will only solidify an already strong frontcourt. Zebo leaving opens the door to sign rashard lewis. Goodbye Dickou! I agree with the hand sanitizer, personally i would've like oden more if he purposefully was trying to get people sick, but hey he's a good kid i'm not.

Dadroza said...

I could do without Mcroberts, whatever. It doesn't get better than paul allen using his billions of dollars to buy off other teams, blazers are so badass.

Kathryn said...

One thing you failed to mention is the loss of Freddie (he will always be Freddie to me) Jones in the Randolph trade... I for one am sad about this. Thoughts???

J M Smith said...

I am tough on Ducks once they leave Eugene, everyone knows that. Fred Jones is the typical journeyman player that are a dime-a-dozen. If Portland needed to include him to make the salaries work in order to trade Randolph then great.

The McRoberts pick crushed me. I was so pumped to see he did not get drafted in the 1st round.