Tuesday, May 29, 2007
The guy we should draft instead of the tall, mysterious Chinese guy
The one thing Danny does well is draft. He's very very good, whether it be the brain doctoring or just his plain Mormon luck that does it we'll never know, but Danny has had his fine moments. I mean when Marcus Banks at #13 is your worse pick that's playing well with the cards you've been dealt. Of course last year Danny traded the #7 pick that could have been Brandon Roy, so I just hope he holds onto #5 this year and his draft intelligence continues.
Hopefully we keep the pick and the guy Danny should draft is the one making all those future Florida pros look helpless. Julian Wright is a fucking beast. For me he easily seems to be the third best player in the draft, and has All-Star written all over him. More people seemed to be feeling this vibe in early '07, Simmons had a column (scan down to the Kansas stuff) in February mentioning he'd take him third, but as of late it seems like draftniks have cooled on him. There was a mock draft I saw where he was going 14th. Jesus.
This guy is way too good to be going 14th. He's at least 6'8''. Athletically he is at the top of his class. He is very intelligent on and off the court, a good example is Monday's Draft Express interview. All these things are very nice, but why you love the guy is because he is a crazy passer.
Julian Wright sees the court. This a a skill most people don't have even in the NBA, and definitely not many guys with Wright's height and athleticism. The last point is why I'm enamored with him - people compare Wright to Diaw, but that is an unfair comparison because Wright's quickness and length are superior. This bra is fast, Diaw kind of looks like a tortoise out there.
Wright can be better likened to Lamar Odom, an athletic big man who can pass far better than any guard on the Lakers. But I think Wright is a better passer than Odom. At Kansas he was unselfish to a fault and would do some passes into the post that were major "WTF, how did he do that?" type stuff. That excites me, and if you don't think that skill translates into the NBA you're wrong. Great passing means easy baskets, good chemistry, and lots of wins - Phoenix the best current example and SacTown of a few years ago another prime recent example.
The naysayers claim Wright can't shoot. This is true to a point, but his shot ain't broke, his form is okay, and with guys his height and age practice is all it takes to make a dramatic improvement. I'm a lot more concerned as to whether Yi Jianlian can actually move as opposed to Wright's perimeter shooting. There is also concern as to whether he is a 3 or a 4 in the NBA, but this seems ridiculous to me because Wright is just a pure forward, capable of playing both positions defensively and offensively.
Wright can pass better than Mike Conley Jr., is eight inches taller, and might be just as athletic. But he is no longer a sexy pick like Conley is. That is the hilarity of the NBA draft, and why Wright should be there at five. With him and Rondo you could have two of the most sublime passers in the NBA. This guy is good, but he's not a mysterious Chinese seven footer, so who knows if we'll get him...