2010/05/19

76ers Jump Up To Pick #2

While the Flyers were busy taking a 2-0 series lead on the Canadiens last night, and the Phillies were busy not giving Roy Halladay any run support, and losing to the Pirates, the NBA Draft Lottery was held, or in the case of 2010, the John Wall Sweepstakes.

The Sixers were sitting in the 6th position, meaning if everything played out by the numbers, the Sixers would have the #6 pick in the NBA Draft. Jrue Holiday was sent to represent the 76ers, which seemed strange since if we got the #1 overall pick, we would be taking another PG in Wall to replace Holiday. The Sixers did not get the #1 overall pick, but instead got the #2 overall pick, which is great news. Not only do the Sixers not have to worry about taking a point guard, assuming the Wizards, who won the draft lottery, take John Wall #1 overall.

Keep in mind that the Sixers do not have a coach currently, but having the #2 pick, and the chance at getting an elite guy might be attractive to some coaches going forward, especially since Jrue Holiday showed some promise last season.

Here are some other players who the Sixers could take, if John Wall goes #1—

Evan Turner - SG/SF, Ohio State

Some would argue that Evan Turner is better than John Wall, and should go #1. Turner was the best player in college basketball last year, and led Ohio State to a #2 seed in the NCAA Tournament, and a Sweet 16 berth. Ohio State lost in the Sweet 16, but it was not because Evan Turner didn’t play well. Turner is a 6’7” shooting guard, who was a junior last season, and averaged 20.4 point per game, 6.0 assists per game, and 9.2 rebounds per game. Turner can fill up a stat sheet very well, much like Andre Iguodala.

If you project Turner to start at the shooting guard position this season, Andre Iguodala will be the starting small forward, which he likes, and Thaddeus Young will have to come off the bench. This also gives the Sixers a very large backcourt in 6’4” point guard Jrue Holiday, and Evan Turner at the 2. Turner makes the most sense here.

Derrick Favors – PF, Georgia Tech

Derrick Favors was one of the extremely talented freshman in the nation last year, and is a load underneath the basket. Favors is 6’10”, and seems to be very streaky. Favors averaged 12.4 points per game, and 8.4 rebounds a game last season. Favors is a guy who projects as a really good NBA player, and when Favors was playing well, there were few big men who could contain him last year. Being a power forward, there really is no need for the 76ers to pick Favors, as we already have Elton Brand locked up for forever, and Marreese Speights, a solid young player behind Brand.

Wesley Johnson – SF, Syracuse

Wesley Johnson busted onto the college basketball scene last year, and played an extremely important role in Syracuse’s success last season. Johnson is a junior, and was a transfer from Iowa State. Johnson made his mark immediately, and ended up averaging 16.5 points per game, and 8.5 rebounds per game. Johnson is a beast, and a freak athlete who can attack the rim, but also shoot the 3, making 41.5% of his three pointers last season. However, Johnson is not a guy the Sixers really need at this point, as they already have 2 similar players in Iguodala, and Thaddeus Young, and they are struggling finding enough minutes for Young right now.

DeMarcus Cousins, PF/C, Kentucky

Cousins, like John Wall, was one of the heralded freshman on the Kentucky squad this year. The first think you notice about Cousins is that he is a huge body. Cousins is listed at 6’11”, 270 pounds, and thus is a huge man to remove from the middle of the floor. He uses his weight well, and is comfortable going right at people, and throwing his body around. Cousins averaged 15.1 points per game, and 9.8 rebounds per game. In my opinion, Cousins should be the pick by the Sixers if they do not pick Evan Turner. Cousins could end up being a beast on the inside, and guys like that are not easy to find, and do not come along all the time. Cousins could fill a need at center once Dalembert is gone, or even at power forward once Brand is gone. Cousins could actually replace Brand in the lineup if he outplays him, since Brand is past his prime.