Lucky 13 or unlucky 13, it all depends on perspective and optics.
The chances of the Raptors moving up in Tuesday night’s NBA lottery were next-to-nothing, which sums up the contributions of some of this decade’s 13th overall picks.
This decade, the most accomplished player to go 13th has been Richard Jefferson, whose first season with San Antonio ended in a second-round sweep by the Suns.
Here’s a look at the 10 players taken this decade at No. 13.
You reap what you sow.
The Raptors got what they deserved — or earned — in the NBA lottery on Tuesday night, ending up with the 13th selection in next month’s NBA draft. They moved neither up nor down.
But in what can only been seen as a loss for Toronto in the grand scheme of things, three Eastern Conference rivals came away with the top selections.
The Washington Wizards, who began the lottery with the fifth-best chance to win, copped the No. 1 pick, ahead of the Philadelphia 76ers, who moved from No. 6 to No. 2.
The New Jersey Nets, who had best chance to win the lottery after a horrible 12-70 regular season, fell to No. 3.
The Raptors finished the 2010 regular season with a 40-42 record and had just a 0.6 per cent chance of earning the top spot in the June 24 draft.
Morey could package the player plus the draft picks acquired from the New York Knicks in the Tracy McGrady deal in a sign-and-trade for Bosh.
This, of course, assumes that Bosh wants to come to Houston. The prospects of that dream coming to fruition and the extent Morey should pursue the forward are topics for different articles.
Morey unearthed Brooks with the 26th pick, and all he did this season was shatter the franchise record for three-pointers made in a season (209) while winning most improved honors. Brooks drained the most triples in the NBA by a wide margin.
The GM also found Carl Landry with the 31st pick. The small price for that terrific second-round acquisition: cash considerations.
The Rockets had to surrender Landry to snatch Kevin Martin from the Sacramento Kings.
The last time the franchise picked in the lottery, the brain trust opted to trade the rights to Rudy Gay for defensive specialist Shane Battier.
Before that, the team snagged Yao Ming.
13. Toronto Raptors – Donatas Motiejunas, C, Benetton Treviso: A typical European big man with a nice outside shot. Playing against older competition in the Italian league, the native of Lithuania averaged only 9.3 points but did shoot 56 percent from the field.
The results of Tuesday’s NBA Draft lottery also resulted in setting the position for one of the Miami Heat’s three second-round picks in the June 24 draft.
Because the Toronto Raptors finished behind the Memphis Grizzlies in the lottery after the teams finished tied at 40-42 in the regular season, Toronto received the more favorable pick among the two in the second round, with that No. 42 pick now belonging to the Heat as a result of the Feb. 2009 Shawn Marion- Jermaine O’Neal trade.
So now, in addition to holding the No. 18 pick in the first round, the Heat holds the No. 41 pick in the second round (from the New Orleans Hornets, from last June’s Marcus Thornton trade), No. 42 and No. 48 (its own selection).
Now, one thing about Philadelphia moving up is that it may make Andre Iguodala even more available than he was. The fact is, isn’t Evan Turner basically what Philadelphia was hoping Iguodala would turn into? Sure, he hasn’t played a minute in the NBA, yet, but I don’t think anyone would be shocked if he ends up turning out to be the best player in this draft. There really isn’t anything he doesn’t do very, very well. Think Philadelphia would trade the 2nd pick? No, I don’t think so, either.
If Colangelo really wants to try and keep Bosh (and there’s an argument out there that he doesn’t, at this point), then perhaps getting Iguodala might be the right player to get in order to show Bosh the team is on the right track. I suggested trading for him way back in February, before the trade deadline. Now, I’m not so sure. I’ll get to why, in one of my next few posts.
While The Magic may wish to go after the ultimate prize in LeBron James, the easier and more likely target is Chris Bosh.
And Bosh does give the Magic what they have been missing. A true power forward who can rebound and score. A player defenses cannot leave to double team Dwight Howard in the post. A potential twin towers that could rival the Spurs Duncan and Robinson? Except both of these young players have up to 10 years of high level play left ahead of them.
With Lewis back at the three and Carter and Nelson at guard, the Magic would be a very imposing team next season. A team that could rival the size and scoring power of the Lakers.
And what could the Toronto Raptors get in return?
An instant rebuild with Gortat, Bass, and Pietrus. Players ready to step into the Raptors rotation and elevate Toronto’s much maligned defense into a position of respectability.
I believe Colangelo will do everything in his power to make a trade here. I really don’t see him settling with the 13th pick. He is going to go for broke and hoping teams like Philly and Washington would trade some of their veteran players because of their good fortune in the lottery. Both teams could start their rebuilding phase in earnest. Meanwhile, the Raptors are going to hope by landing a good player will convince Chris Bosh to stay or find a suitable replacement to replace CB4.
Whatever he decides, it will be a turning point for this Raptor franchise.
Analysis: The Raptors already have two pretty good point guards on their roster — Jose Calderon and Jarrett Jack. However, neither is the uber-quick speed demon that coach Jay Triano would love to have. Bradley also gives the Raptors something else that neither Calderon and Jack provide — the ability to play lockdown defense.