Continuation of my last post which you can find here, here, and here. This post shall describe the last half of the lottery picks of the legendary 2008 draft class. The same draft class that lost to the rookies during all-star weekend some weeks ago. So here you, picks 8-14.
Every great draft class has a bust and this white boy happens to be the one of 2008. His name is Joe Alexander, born in Taiwan, knows how to speak mandarin, and a phantom college career I do not know much about. At one point he was described as being the next Larry Bird such as other white boys like Adam Morrison and Tyler Hansbrough. On paper, he was considered the best athlete, having the second best 185lb bench reps, and second fastest sprint time during workouts. And he was also able to drop 15 points on the Los Angeles Lakers once in his professional career. Other than that, he was injured, assigned to d-league, still injured, and traded. Not much else to say about him.
The 9th pick drafted to the Charlotte Bobcats had a great rookie season, averaging 11.8 points a game and showing nice athleticism. His second season though, he fell off a bit, averaging only a little bit over 5 points a game but that can be attributed to the ridiculous playing time that Raymond Felton is receiving. Augustin lacks size but he has shown that he is a very smart player. He knows his rotations, knows his plays, and can play pretty decent defense for a big man. Just every once in a while a bigger point guard would out power him such as Deron Williams did. As of right now, his game has a lot of expanding to do, but he can drop a lot of points at once if given the playing time. An above average pick that still has a long way to go.
The only bright spot of the New Jersey Nets right now. Hell, he is the only person keeping those Nets afloat in this season. His averaging of 19 points, 9 rebounds, and almost 2 blocks a game is considered all star level. A talented center that can be almost Shaq-like in terms of dominance, Brooke Lopez will turn the Nets into a devastating team. He’s young, he’s playing well, and everyone knows that he is only going to get better as the years go on. All he needs is a strong supporting cast and this half Hispanic center can send his team to the playoffs and beyond.
Jerryd Bayless is a shooter, slasher, and volume scorer. This season so far, he has scored double digits 24 times, one of those times, scoring 31 points. Right now he’s a great backup guard to the great Brandon Roy and knows how to keep the team afloat when the Blazers starting lineup is benched and resting. Like the rest of the players in this post, he’s still developing but he has shown many flashes of greatness here.
Jason Thompson of the Kings kinda got written off because of the beastmode playing of Tyreke Evans. Last year he averaged 11.1 points a game which is decent for a rookie. And this year he is averaging 12.7 points a game which shows slight improvement. He is a forward center who is notoriously known for his jumpshot. He is not a stretch 4 like Rashard Lewis or Antawn Jamison because he can’t really shoot treys but he has the long jumper which is good enough. And Thompson also averages around 8 rebounds a game. Good big man, I just don’t think hes ever going to be amazing now with Tyreke Evans, Omri Casspi, and Carl Landry running the Kings.
This guy can’t really do much besides score. And even then he only averages 8 points a game. I’m not disappointed because anyone having to play with a ballhog such as Danny Granger would only average 8 points too. I don’t watch the Pacers play much but I do know from playing 2K10 that Rush can hit the trey often. Again, he’s not horrible, he’s not great, and he is part of the late lottery picks where its either hit or miss on who you get.
The 14th pick by the Golden State Warriors and the last person I’ll be writing about in this post. Some may call him overrated, others may call him the second coming of *insert great player here*. I do know that he was heavily hyped during the offseason last summer by all the bloggers and media. And really, those last 8 weeks of his rookie year where he averaged 15 points and 10 rebounds was impressive, I’ll give him that. But he’s skinny like most of his teammates and extremely fragile. I believe that he is injured right now. I never understood the hype, but I can tell that he’s talented and athletic. He has star potential written all over him, he just needs room to grow. Which means Monta Ellis can’t keep shooting 30 shots a night and should pass it to the inside once in a while. Randolph though is just one of those players you want to see get better but you’re not sure if it’ll happen.
So there are the lottery picks of the 2008 draft class. A nice young group of players where besides one has shown many flashes of greatness. Some other notable people from this year are J.J. Hickson, the 19th pick chosen by the Cavs. He’s a good power forward who plays with Lebron. Then there’s Courtney Lee, the 22nd pick chosen by the Magic and is now playing for the Nets. And George Hill, the fantastic point guard chosen at 26th by the Spurs, who I also have on my fantasy team and is giving me more points than I deserve. And from the second round, there’s Mario Chalmers from the Heat and DeAndre Jordan from the Clippers. Then there’s Anthony Morrow who went undrafted and is also on my fantasy team and gives me a lot of points, inconsistently though but whatever works. And yes, I believe this draft class will be better than the Lebron and Darko Milicic class of 2003 simply because of all the star power here.