So it turns out that there are other things I could have been writing about over the course of the last five days. (Has it really just been five days? I wrote my first "Cliptics" post on Saturday, though I did post about Doc Rivers' availability a couple days before that, so almost a week ago.) One of the things we've been ignoring for the past week is NBA Draft news, and in particular, the SB Nation 2013 NBA Mock Draft.
This was a pretty cool exercise, the results of which are being posted this week. One person from each SB Nation NBA blog represented his or her team in a mock draft that included trades. And because these are individuals that are pretty directly in touch with the needs and thinking of their team, the results are hopefully reasonable.
The draft, which was conducted over the course of a week or so, is being revealed several picks per day at Ridiculous Upside, SB Nation's Draft and D-League blog. We're up to pick number 16, and the results have been interesting. Here are the results so far:
Updated 2013 NBA Mock Draft Board:
1. Cleveland Cavaliers: NERLENS NOEL
2. Orlando Magic BEN MCLEMORE
3. Washington Wizards OTTO PORTER
4. Charlotte Hornets ALEX LEN
5. Phoenix Suns VICTOR OLADIPO
6. New Orleans Pelicans TREY BURKE
7. Sacramento Kings ANTHONY BENNETT (for Philly)
8. Detroit Pistons C.J. MCCOLLUM
9. Minnesota Timberwolves KENTAVIOUS CALDWELL-POPE
10. Portland Trail Blazers RUDY GOBERT (For Phoenix)
11. Philadelphia 76ers MICHAEL CARTER-WILLIAMS (For Sacramento)
12. Oklahoma City Thunder CODY ZELLER
13. Dallas Mavericks SHABAZZ MUHAMMAD
14. Utah Jazz DENNIS SCHROEDER
15. Milwaukee Bucks SHANE LARKIN
16. Boston Celtics GORGUI DIENG
As you can see, there have been some trades so far -- and I was involved in one of them on behalf of the Clippers. Since it involved the seventh pick in the draft (it was a multi-team trade) the details of the trade were announced with the seventh pick.
Here's the gist of the trade from the Clippers perspective (bearing in mind that all of this took place before Doc Rivers and hence Kevin Garnett had become available):
-- The Clippers give up DeAndre Jordan and the 25th pick in exchange for Spencer Hawes, Jason Richardson and the 35th pick.
Here's the explanation I wrote at the time (which is posted at Ridiculous Upside):
Clippers give up Jordan and move down 10 spaces in the draft. In exchange they get a serviceable center in Hawes to replace Jordan and a floor stretcher in Richardson (who we're assuming passed his physical since the trade went through).
Jordan has underperformed his contract, and Hawes' contract is one year shorter. Truth be told, Hawes' numbers are not significantly worse than Jordan's in most area's, he makes his free throws, and he can stretch the floor a bit for Blake Griffin. Add in Hawes' passing ability, and he's actually a pretty good fit with Griffin.
Richardson is a risk, but if healthy could be very successful playing next to Chris Paul (look what Willie Green did there). Moving down in this draft isn't as bad as in some others, as the talent is a bit muddled at this point -- there will almost certainly be players available at 35 that end up being better than the player chosen 25 (though finding the right one is the trick of course). Also, it saves the Clippers a guaranteed contract and a required roster spot for the 25th pick on a team that is in win now mode. Pick 35 will end up competing with minimum salary vets for a roster spot rather than handing the spot to a rookie.
That's my story anyway.
It's worth noting that I have been fairly thoroughly maligned for making this trade, both on the email chain among the other bloggers when it was first announced and on the comments at RU. I stand by the deal -- and I'm working on a separate post with more insight into my thinking as well as more background on the difficult process of making trades, even fake trades.
I highly recommend that you check out the SB Nation Mock Draft at Ridiculous Upside and continue to follow it as it unfolds over the next few days. Although the Clippers will not be picking in the first round, it will still be interesting to see who is available at 25.