As many of you may have noticed, nearly everyone seems to be fully convinced that this year's draft is terribly bleak. People please take a deep breath. There will be star players produced by this draft, we just aren't sure who it will be. Every player has flaws, and the ones that can correct them and further develop their games will be productive. Every draft produces at least four All-Star caliber players, and this year's draft may have more. It is a very point guard-heavy draft, so 2 or 3 Chris Paul-type players could emerge from this class. Blake Griffin will be drafted 1st overall and whether or not he is willing to work on his offensive repertoire and shot-blocking will determine whether he becomes a 10-10 player or a All-Star. He certainly has the athleticism to do so. He also has size at 6-10 and 245 lbs. I still dont see what the Clippers will do with Griffin, Chris Kaman, and Marcus Camby, but they cant pass Griffin up.
My picks to succeed in this draft are Griffin, Hasheem Thabeet, Stephen Curry, Jonny Flynn, and Tyreke Evans.
Blake Griffin reminds me of Amare Stoudemire in his athleticism and Dwight Howard in his power. I belive he will be a successful All-Star within 2-3 years if he develops an offensive game. If not, then all bets are off. Thabeet, like Griffin, must develop an offensive game. He will immediately be a defensive force, and will be the next Mutombo as soon as he wags his enormous fingers following a block. Curry must bulk up, but his shot should enable him to be an immediate scoring force. He's got a killer shot like Kobe, but must develop passing and defensive skills. Flynn reminds me of Tony Parker and Jameer Nelson in that he is an indersized, extreme-speed point guard who can blow by you at any time. His big obstacle will be developing defense and a consistent jump shot. Flynn must work extra-hard to compensate for his lack of height. Evans reminds me of OJ Mayo. They are both around 6-5, 210 lbs and can score at will. They even look alike. But unlike Mayo, Evans will probably be asked to play PG, not SG, in the NBA. He only played the position for half a season and has tons of learning to do. He will score right of the bat and will use his athleticism to compensate for defensive lapses. His passing and defense will be key in his future All-Star prospects.
As a Spurs fan, I hope the rumors that SA is trying to get the #5 pick from the Wizards are true. I would be absolutely ecstatic if the Spurs got Thabeet or James Harden (Who also has All-Star potential). They badly need an influx of youth and athleticism. Too bad they'll need to give up Ginobili in any trade with Washington. He was a fan favorite, but I'm not fully convinced that his ankle will ever allow him to be the same exposive player. We may need to trade him while he still has value (he's 32). The Spurs are traditionally shady, so there's no telling what they'll really do. After all, who really saw them picking George Hill last year?