So you’re not exactly thrilled with the 8th pick, eh?

The purpose of this post is twofold:

  1. To highlight potential “value” picks later in the draft.
  2. Try to highlight “risky” players at the 8th spot.

Whether its valuing stocks, houses, or college players, the “secret” is the same – observe factors that are consistently over/undervalued to find opportunities others may be missing.

Often one can find value later in the draft. This draft does not appear to be unique in that aspect – if the mocks are anywhere close to reality.

Several biases have been observed when it comes to drafting players:
David Berri (of Wins Produced fame) and Martin Schmidt from “Stumbling On Wins“:

All else being equal, players will be drafted higher if the player is younger, recently appeared in the Final Four, and is relatively taller.

And it can be signficant:

A player who appears in the Final Four can improve his draft position by about 12 spots.

Most of this is understandable. Scouts and GMs will, in general, give too much credit: A) to one player if his team makes the final four; B) the impact on measurements C) “Upside” and “ceiling”

Sometimes a good rebounder is just a damn good rebounder. I don’t particularly care if he’s 6’8″ in heals or 7’1″ without shoes. If he puts up the numbers, he puts up the numbers. You know where to shove your wingspan numbers.

“… you guys just sit around talking the same old ‘good body’ nonsense like we’re selling jeans.”

I’ll be upfront that “but you NEED TO WATCH THE GAMES!” comments could be particularly valid in this analysis. No, I didn’t have time to watch Kim English’s 35 games played (nether did you, BTW). It’s not the purpose of the article. Most scouts and GMs don’t get to watch all 35 games of 75+ players. Nor do their memories always serve them well.

Our focus is: who has put up the numbers and may be undervalued? As we hinted at above players that: may be a bit older, play for “non-elite” program, and perhaps have a less than ideal wingspan/handwidth/eyebrowlength often emerge as great candidates.

Late 1st round, second round values

The Pint Sized SF/PF Jack of All Trades

He measures under 6’5″ (w/o shoes), is 21 years old (gasp!) and…. is a top 15 defensive rebounder and top 10 in effective field goal% (at 57%). Oh, and he has the sixth best assist-to-turnover ratio in the field (speaks more to him taking care of the ball than dishing out assists).


These, and other impressive metrics, led to the third highest Win Score per 40 min in our draft database, 7th in PER, and 6th highest (in all of the NCAA) Win Shares score (including 17th highest in the NCAA for defensive Win Shares). While I won’t like on combine testing for much, I don’t mind the fact he bench pressed 185 lbs more than anyone else there. And he was Big East Player of the Year. Not bad.

Draft Express’ Johnathan Givony had this to say: “One of the most efficient players in the NCAA, on both ends of the floor, Crowder is the heart and soul of a Marquette squad that has exceeded expectations.” Sounds like a Casey-type player.

Is he a top 15 pick? Probably not. Is he potentially very good value in the second round – even late first round? Absolutely.

The Sharp Shooter, part 1

Mr. English has the best effective field goal percentage (64%) in our NCAA database. His 3 point FG% of 45.9% is second in the group, just behind Kentucky’s Doron Lamb. The challenge here – which is why he’s off many radars – is he’s a bit below average on most other metrics for the position. Given the Raptors have another second round pick (at 56th), this could represent good value late in the draft.

The Sharp Shooter, part 2

Mr. Jenkins is projected to go just before the Raptors’ 1st pick of the second round, but if he drops a tad he should be considered. He’s tied for the best True Shooting Percentage in our database (with Anthony Davis and Kim English). His 1.19 points per play is just behind Davis. He gets to the line a reasonably amount at 5.2 times per 40 min (pace adj). The knocks? He is a poor rebounder (even considering his position) and appears to be an unwilling passer at only 1.4 assists per 40. Still worth a close look if he falls to the second round.

The Glass Cleaner

Drew Gordon is another 21 year old that is likely to be overlooked in the first round. He ranks third in WS/40 in our database, driven largely by his 2nd best (behind Thomas Robinson) rebounds per 40 min (pace adjusted) metric. Mr. Gordon keeps his fouls in check, with only 2.9 PFs per 40 minutes. His 57% true shooting percentage of 58% is just above the average in the database. A big certainly isn’t a primary need, but Gordon could serve as a utility backup if one of our PFs are moved – or play spot duty at the 5. He could go late in the second, where he have the 56th pick.

Options for our 8th pick?

Mr. Average at 8th?

Jeremy Lamb is pegged by a few big boards as our probable pick at the 8th spot. While my expectations aren’t high for an eighth pick, this choice seems especially underwhelming. His PER is only ranked 31st of the 53 NCAA players we track. That’s not good for someone who like someone who likes to shoot (~15 shots per 40; 0.13 assist-to-FGA ratio).


His WS/40 is even lower at 36th in our database as he doesn’t rebound much either (only 5.2 per 40 min). His TS% (59%) and eFG% (56%) are both a couple percentage points above the group averages, but not exactly in the top tier. Defensive performance is tougher to measure, but this interview is also a bit cause of concern (~ 2:15 mark). One shouldn’t have to “find ways to keep (their) energy up” at an elite level.

Rivers Doesn’t Flow

On the Raptors facebook page, it asked fans who they liked among Lamb, Rivers or Barnes (who were all in Toronto for workouts). Surprisingly a large number of fans picked Rivers, likely remembering amazing moments like this. This numbers paint another picture however. Rivers is 2nd from last in both WS/40 and PER. His effective FG% (50%) is ranked 43rd. His assist to turnover ratio is under 1 and he rebounds at a rate of <4 per 40 minutes. Yes, he's only 19 (soon to turn 20), but he needs to improve dramatically to be worthy of an 8th pick.

Could be Worth Waiting on Waiters

Mr. Waiters has been heavily rumoured to be squarely in the Raptors’ sights. I wasn’t initially impressed as I look at his shooting stats (both his eFG% and TS% are almost dead average in the field of draft candidates). But on closer inspection, some interesting numbers pop out. He’s ranked 11th in PER and have a very nice assist-to-turnover ratio of 1.92 (ranked 3rd). He gets to the line more than most guards at 5.4 trips per 40 minutes where he makes 72.9% of his FTs (just above average). While defense metrics are always a bit limited, his 3.0 steals per 40 is best among all players (2nd is Jae Crowder btw). Mr. Waiters also led the Orageman in AdjDRating – by a large margin.’s Luke Winn noted “It’s not a surprise that Waiters is the team leader, creating a turnover on 5.8 percent of his possessions played, and on an amazing 38.8 percent of the possessions in which he directly engages.” Also sounds like a Casey-type player.


Likely the best choices?

8th Pick

Mr. Lillard is ranked 2nd in PER behind, of course, Anthony Davis. Obviously his numbers were put up against lesser competition than most players in our database. But he also wasn’t playing with a squad full of NCAA superstars either, which also enabled defenses to key in on him. What we like is ability to take care of the ball (1.73 assist/turnover ratio; ranks him 5th), his ability to get to the line (a 3rd best clip at 9.1 times per 40 minutes), his database best 88.7% FT% when he gets there, his 5.7 rebounds/40 (this 6’3″ guard had the highest “no-step” vertical in the combine at 34.5 inches).

I also like his ability to be effective from deep (40.9%) – ranking him 7th of those players who take more than 2.5 attempts per game. His 3pt and FG efficiency lead to a 4th best True Shooting percentage in the group.

37th Pick Jae Crowder, Marquette
57th Pick Kim English, Missouri (other options Jenkins [above] or Will Barton [not mentioned], Memphis if they drop)

You may see an obvious problem with these picks. Our biggest need is at the wing. While we’ve picked up good value and potentially quite productive wings, they are not likely starting caliber wings right away. We’ve added another PG with a top pick when we have two capable players already on the roster. Its why, if the rumours are true, we’re looking to make a trade for a stud wing. While I wouldn’t like to part with Calderon, it may make sense to package him with our glut of PFs to acquire a wing. If you move Calderon, draft Lillard. If you happen to find a good deal to move Bayless, you draft Waiters. I rather try to work a trade than draft a mediocre wing at the 8th spot.

Share this:
  • Nilanka15

    As always, great analysis!

    So it’s settled….Lillard it is ūüėČ

    • Al_Oliver

      No, I think Waiters should be the pick. He seems to have a lot of the attributes Casey likes. Hard-nosed, gets to rim and plays aggressive on both ends of the court. His shooting is improving too. 
      He could be an instant offence player this year off the bench and eventually he might be able to run the point on a consistent basis (it is possible, but he needs to put in work with Johnny Davis). His upside is huge

      • Nilanka15

        I’m not sold on Waiters at all.¬† DraftExpress claims his ceiling is Rodney Stuckey….Rodney freakin’ Stuckey.¬† We just sat through 4 months of excruciatingly bad basketball for a chance to draft Rodney Stuckey (in a best-case scenario)?¬† Forgive me if I fail to get excited.

        • voy

          have you seen waiters’ youtube nba workout video?¬† dude looks fat.

          there is no way he goes top 8.

          • voy

            if we can grab terrance ross after 10, i think that would be a fan-fricken-tastic pick.  i would dangle ed davis but I dont know if there would be any takers.


            i would love to see ross vs lamb on the court.

          • Nilanka15

            lol, I thought the same thing after watching his videos.¬† Doesn’t look to be in peak physical condition.

        • Al_Oliver

          if you have seen him play as opposed to relying on a youtube video or draftexpress’ infamous player comparisons, you would see more than Rodney stuckey. i think he is more tyreke evans than stuckey He has real pro skills in how he bulls his way to the rim and can shoot after contact.
          here is an article from last week quoting boeheim:

    • Seeten

      I am all in on Lillard. Lets do this.

  • CalgaryRapsFan

    Really solid analyses!

    I am really warming up to Lillard @ #8, but fear he will be scooped up by Portland @ #6.¬† I expect the Raps to allow Bayless to walk, unless he’s qualified to use as an asset in a S&T deal.¬† Lillard would slide nicely into the backup PG role, which is on par with Casey’s comments about the #8 pick returning a solid play who likely would be an immediate impact starter type of player.

    Both 2nd round picks seem to have good value and match what some around here have been pushing for, especially the Crowder pick.  The 2nd round tends to be where teams pick more for positional need than BPA, but the Crowder pick especially would be a good one, whether as a player or future trade asset.

    I still expect the Raps to target a starting SF via free agency or trade, regardless who they draft, unless they somehow move up to draft MKG, Beal or Barnes.¬† Even then, I’m not sure the Raps would be satisfied starting 2 rookies (Valanciunas being the other).

    • CalgaryRapsFan

      damn keyboard!¬† I meant to say … “Casey’s comments about the #8 pick returning a solid player who likely would NOT be an immediate impact starter type of player.”¬† Lillard would project as a solid backup PG, which comes with lower expectations, while still having the potential/expectation to become the PG-of-the-future.

      • Bendit

        If Lillard goes earlier to Portland then Dragic becomes an “easier” acquisition (UFA) as Portland was considered the main competition for him.

        • CalgaryRapsFan

          Good point.¬† If Houston prefers Dragic, then Lowry would become an easier acquisition perhaps.¬† It would also be one team out of the running for Nash’s services, for that matter.

  • guest

    that was awsome

  • RaptorFan

    I say we go for Austin Rivers…..even if that means we trade our 8th pick¬†for Portland’s 11th…..he seems like a player with a lot of potential…..the talent is clearly there…. i’m not impressed with the way waiters left the combine and cancelled all workouts (just from one promise??? – quite odd)….Lamb would be a good choice but i’m turned off by his laid back attitude….Austin Rivers appears to WANT to be an elite player and wants to be on a winning team……keep in mind that if he played one more year at Duke he could very well be drafted¬†in the¬†top 5 in 2013 if his numbers/play improved!

    We also need a true shooting guard¬†and he can shoot¬†it from anywhere….I also think he would be a better option than Gary Forbes at the point lol (just my opinion as he often played the point at¬†Duke)¬†

    • Al_Oliver

      That’s his agent’s decision to shut down Waiters

      • RaptorFan

        I dont think that matters at all…..You think twice about taking a player who skips the combine and doesnt want to work out for your team (IMO).¬† This is an important possible franchise changing draft pick…. i`m not impressed by this move by Waiters (or his agent)…. what could they possibly be scare of??

        • voy

          there is no way, i think, waiters would be guaranteed a spot at the 8th pick.  even if you liked him as a player, there is no way a gm would guarantee him the 8th spot, on the chance someone else they liked better fell to that spot. 

          maybe someone told him they would take him around the 12-15th spot.  even still, I have no idea why any gm would do this.  whats in it for the gm and the organization?

        • Al_Oliver

          I take the best talent available, including Waiters if it’s him. If the Raps front office don’t know the players yet, then I am ashamed to follow this team. Boeheim is someone they can reach out to, I don’t see this as a big deal. If anything the promise sets the floor for him. The way it sounds, he’s going before Phoenix picks so it has already paid off.¬†
          This isn’t the first or the last time an agent will shut his guy down. It generally works

        • Hoopzilla

          it makes perfect sense to cancel workouts if you have a guarantee. he was never going to crack the top five, a lottery guarantee is fine. No need for the agent or the player to risk injury showcasing his talents for a team that won’t likely pick him anyways. as it has been stated, most of the scouting has been done already, why risk injuring yourself like Jeremy Lamb. if waiters has a guarantee and works out for another team and breaks his ankle or tears an ACL/MCL we would all be calling him a moron.

          If someone tells you they will pay you millions of dollars, why risk losing that? His name will be called in the lottery, who knows he might even want to go to the team that made the promise, we don’t know who it is, although Phoenix at 13 is my bet.

  • RaptorFan

    I really liked your second round choices by the way…..Crowder, English or Jenkins would work in my opinion….. this was a really good piece Tom Liston…..Thanks for the read!

  • DH

    There are currently 22 x PGs in the NBA with PERs of 17.0 or higher. There are 29 x PFs currently in the NBA with PERs of 17.0 or higher. There are only 7 — count them — 7 SGs in the NBA with PERs of 17.0 or higher. You want to talk BPA? How about being able to land a player at 8 that has the potential to become top 10 at his position? The SG position in the NBA is at all all-time low right now. Gerald Green, for chirssakes, is ranked the 11th best SG accoring to PER. Do you really think Damian Lillard is going to be a top 10 PG? To put things in perspective there, Steve Nash is ranked 8th. Jeremy Lamb has everything he needs to be one of the top 10 SGs in the NBA. According to Draft Express his 2 point FG% is the highest of any SG over the past 10 years. If he continues to develop his 3 point shot and FTAs his PER is going to rise. He has the length necessary to make the jump to the next level and room to grow since he’s a late bloomer. BPA is also about supply and demand. It’s why Cs have always went high in the lottery. It’s traditionally been harder to find an impact C than it is an impact PF or PG. Now, it’s the SG position that’s depleted so having a chance at an impact SG that could become top 10 in the league is something you don’t pass up. He has nearly everything you look for in a SG prospect. Prototype height/length. A 38 inch vertical. An 11’8 max vertical reach. Ball handling ability. Floaters in the lane. A developing 3 point shot. Defensive upside. Let’s get a kid that will be better than what 20 of the other teams are rolling out as starters and have an advantage at a position for once. Let’s draft Lamb!

    • All good points. ¬†Challenge is how does one assess if someone is a “late bloomer”? If one can *consistently* predict “late bloomers” and upcoming step function increases in 3pt %, then they’ll be guaranteed $5M a year as a scout.

      It’s a good point on PER (I actually only found 5, but sometimes players are not listed properly). Perhaps PER “has a small bias” with SG and they don’t tend to have as many stat-stuffing options – they don’t tend to get both rebounds and blocks (like bigs) nor assists (like PG) – and have to rely more on points and steals to “make their number”. Would have to think about that.

      The main questions of course are: 1) will he be able to move up his 3 pt % from 33.6% to 37-38% *while* moving back 3 feet and 2) instantly develop a commitment to defence. “Defensive upside” means he currently doesn’t care and we hope he’ll start. We need a good defender at the 2 spot.

      if we can develop confidence in those two areas (not sure how we can exactly), then he would be a great fit on this squad.

      However, this comment from DraftExpress concerns me: “….Connecticut’s team chemistry appeared to be very poor, and Lamb didn’t do much to alleviate some of the questions we’ve outlined previously regarding his questionable shot selection and passive demeanor on the court.”

      • DH

        Well, if we go back 10 years, in 2002, there were nearly 20 SGs in the NBA with PERs over 17.0. See here:

        That was back during a time when we used to think talented 6’6 types grew on trees; they don’t. It’s pretty clear that Lamb’s a late bloomer. He didn’t start on his HS team until his final years. He wasn’t recruited highly. Calhoun saw him in a tournament and spotted his basketball genius and has nurtured it ever since. He played the perfect sidekick to Kemba and this year he stepped up and took on more of an alpha role and was the second most impressive player in the FIBA under 19 basketball tournament to our very own Jonas Valanciunas. He’s the pick if he’s there and while he won’t be a superstar. He might be a Kevin Martin level star and that’s better than Derozan.

        • Bendit

          Are you not concerned about his demeanor? This guy seems to need a double dose of happy and wakeup pills all the time. By his own admission he concedes a need to self motivate. He just gives me a bad vibe. The Raps are in sore need of a leadership gene and JL simply doesn’t seem to fit the bill imo. ¬†

      • Brain Colangelo

        Isn’t it surprising that Waiters, who gets to the line at will and was not the sole option on offense, was less effecient inside the 3-point line than Lamb?¬†

        I like the defence Waiters brings, but Lamb is supposed to be decent defensively and seems to have a higher ceiling than Lamb.¬† I’d prefer Lillard over either but Lamb over Waiters.

        • Hoopzilla

          define productive inside the three? shooting percentage sure, but that can’t be the only reason to give lamb the nod. with almost double the assists that lamb had and the same turnover rate, lamb comes up short there. getting to the line, lamb will never be strong enough to go in the lane and finish with strength, which you need to do in the nba. lamb is a volume shooter and turns the ball over more than he makes plays for his teammates, a black hole. waiters has shown ability to create offense with his defense, a propensity to give the ball to his teammates at a respectable 2:1 assist to turnover ratio. he takes care of the ball, more possessions and the ball doesn’t stop moving when it gets to his hands. lamb doesn’t look that great when you consider more than just one stat he barely edges waiters out on anyways. and since lamb admits himself staying motivated is an issue, i can’t see him being motivated to drive the lane much when nba big men slide over and give him a hard foul. wouldn’t surprise me to see him turn into as volume shooting black hole until he puts some size on, and i really don’t see his frame supporting it. since motivation is a problem for him, i can’t see him doing anything about it. where is the hunger? waiters at least seems game on both ends of the floor and motivated.

  • Theswirsky

    Nice post as always Liston

    One recommendation… it would be nice to put each players Win Share/Win Score/PER (or their ranking whatever) so we can get a consistent comparison.

    For instance, you give us Lillard and Waiter’s¬†PER, but not¬†their Win Share, while Drew Gordon you give us his Win Share but not his PER, Lamb you provide both.

  • voy

    am i the only one concerned that waiters only played 24 minutes per game?  i think he will be a much better college player than nba pro. 

    it doesn’t even look like waiters is in that good shape to me.¬† also i have to question how well will be able to guard other 2’s mano-a-mano.¬† I think the syracuse zone covered up alot of his defensive deficiencies.

    I think Jeremy Lamb is a much better prospect at the 8th spot.

    • voy

      terrance ross is a better prospect than waiters, as well, in my opinion.

    • “am I the only one concerned that waiters only played 24 minutes per game” ¬†I am as well. ¬†Especially given it was his second year. ¬†That’s why I give the nod to Lillard. ¬†But Waiters potential defensive impact is¬†intriguing.

  • hotshot

    What about Jared Sullinger?! I know many Raptors fans are not very high on him but I think if Lillard is taking before the 8th pick so Jared may be the BPA. I think he is going to be much better player then Amir & Ed Davis and then we can trade those two for some valuable pieces.

  • Keegan

    I like Kevin Murphy as a Second Round selection

  • 8 Options for Raptors Draft Pick #8
    With playoffs in mind, the addition of Jonas Valanciunas next season, the pre-injured form of Andrea Bargnani, & improved execution of D Casey‚Äôs defensive schemes might be enough to catapult the team post regular season berth. ¬†Raptors ranked 15th in Casey‚Äôs 1st year & could possibly improve 4 notches, & since the top 11 defensive teams made to the playoffs this year, the goal is not too far-fetched.¬† However, the way lottery pick & cap space will be parlayed this year will determine if Raptors could keep the long term sustainability & become perennial contender.¬† Putting yourself in BC‚Äôs shoes, what are some probable options you‚Äôll work hard to come to fruition this offseason?¬† I offer 8, ranked in the order of preference ‚Äď
    1.       Keep the pick & address need for experience via free agency, w/ Andrei Kirilenko or Brandon Rush as prime targets  
    Bottom Line: Drafting Damian Lillard at #8 addresses need for PG of the future in the mold of D Rose, R Westbrook, R Rondo & T Parker.  Pick #37 could produce quality player drafting either:  W Barton, D Lamb, S Machado, K Murphy, or K O’Quinn (in this order of availability).  Pick #56 could be used for rights for either:  Hollis Thompson, Eric Griffin, Jae Crowder, Terrance Henry, or a foreign player to stash overseas.
    Sidebar:  The name Damian educes fear.  Hope Lillard’s play evokes terror in NBA.
    2.       Package J Bayless, E Davis, #8 & #56 picks to Boston’s R Rondo, #21 & #22 picks
    Bottom Line:  Celtics need infusion of youth & could draft an impact player in the lottery.  Raptors will have their PG of the future yet still pick assets at #21 & #22 for any combination of:  M Harkless, A Moultrie, R White, M Teague, Jeff Taylor, A Nicholson, or E Fournier (in this order of availability).
    Sidebar:  Could Rajon impact sales of the car model bearing his last name?
    3.       Trade J Bayless & #8 pick for Houston’s Kyle Lowry & #14 pick (or #16 pick)
    Bottom Line:  Lowry’s co-existence w/ coach McHale is an issue & could be on his way out.  Houston will get Bayless as back up PG to G Dragic (or as starter if latter signs w/ other team).  Rockets will have better options at #8.  Raptors will get an upgrade from PG position & could use #14 (or #16) pick to draft either: D Lillard, PJ3, J Lamb, D Waiters, A Rivers, T Ross, M Harkless, or A Moultrie (in this order of availability).
    Sidebar:  Will ties with Alvin Williams knot this deal?
    4.       Trade D DeRozan  & #8 pick for Oklahoma’s James Harden & #28 pick
    Bottom Line:  Both Harden and Ibaka are expected to earn big deals next year & OKC will be hard pressed to keep both.  Thunder would probably opt for Ibaka for defensive purpose & will have cheaper 3rd scoring option in DDR, plus lottery pick.  Raptors will get a former 3rd overall pick & young clutch scorer in Harden, & could use #28 pick to draft either Will Barton or Doron Lamb to improve 3-pt shooting.
    Sidebar:  Hornets got the Brow, Raptors got the Beard
    5.       Package D DeRozan, #8 & #56 picks for Philadelphia’s Andre Iguodala & #15 pick
    Bottom Line:  Salary owed to Iggy will create flexibility to Philly & move Evan Turner as starter.  76ers will have better options at #8 than outside lottery.  Raptors will fill the need for SF & could use #15 pick to draft either: D Lillard, PJ3, J Lamb, D Waiters, A Rivers, T Ross, M Harkless, or A Moultrie (in this order of availability).
    Sidebar:  Iggy will finally exorcize the ghost of Hoffa
    6.       Package E Davis, #8 & #56 picks to Charlotte’s Corey Maggette & #2 pick
    Bottom Line:  Charlotte will rid of enormous salary tied to Maggette while still can get an impact player at #8.  E Davis is an alumna of UNC, so this deal might enamor w/ M Jordan.  Raptors will have a chance to draft MKG to address need for lockdown defender.
    Sidebar:  MKG in tune with the Pound the Rock theme
    7.       Trade D DeRozan & #8 pick to Cleveland’s Luke Walton, #4 & #24 picks
    Bottom Line: Salary owed to Walton will create more flexibility to Cleveland & will get an athletic SF to pair w/ Irving & still have a decent pick at #8.  Raptors will have a chance to draft Beal & could add another asset at #24 to draft either:  M Harkless, A Moultrie, R White, M Teague, Jeff Taylor, A Nicholson, or E Fournier (in this order of availability).
    Sidebar:  No Beal, no deal
    8.       Package J Bayless, #8 pick & Traded Player Exception to San Antonio’s Tony Parker
    Bottom Line: Parker was almost a Raptor last year so maybe we could revisit the past.  Spurs will get a starting caliber PG, a lottery pick & cash incentive.  Raptors get a battle tested PG & clutch scorer at the same time, rich w/ playoffs experience.
    Sidebar:¬† Parker say ‚Äúmerci beaucoup‚ÄĚ & Canada understands

    • weedman

      Came close to breaking out the zig zags there until you went hollywood-gossip-rag with the sidebar shit. So I didn’t get past numero uno. Too bad. Looked like you had something to say. 

    • Tesla

      Let’s be realistic here, not one of these scenarios would ever happen except for maybe number 5. And a definite “NO” by Danny Ainge on the first one.

      I understand, I too was once optimistic…

    • Brain Colangelo

      Why stop at a deal for Rondo when we could perhaps get the entire big-4 for our picks, Bargnani, Davis and DeRozan?

    • mountio

      Good post .. only problem is I can sum up most of your deals with Raps trade #8 pick plus somewhere between junk (bayless) and mediocre (DD) for [insert all star]. Not gonna happen my friend ..

      • Destro

        What is good about a post suggesting we trade DeRozan for bum ass Maggette ? Im not opposed to moving DD but no way in hell am i giving him and his contract AWAY for an overpaid stiff and equal or lesser draft picks…cot damn get some sense…

    • Destro

      I hope you copied this from an article and THESE arent YOUR ideas…cuz some of the trade ideas are absolutely terrible…Luke Walton ? Corey Maggette ? *cut eye*

  • Good thought – would be okay with him over English at #57. ¬†More turnover prone and not quite the same shooter, but has more tools.
    (Edit – supposed to be in response to Keegan’s thoughts on Kevin Murphy)

  • Draftstar

    Great work Tom – stuff is pure gold! Love it when posters unearth gems. Always felt that biases favouring certain players was a big part of drafting inaccuracies. I have some reservations about Waiters shooting from the one game I saw. Looks like he can only drive at will and shoot flow of game stuff. What does your eye tell you? Do you think he might be just an energy, change of pace guy? Conspiracy to have someone else fall or the real deal? Love Lillard long time. He very good payea. Could be some serviceable players after 60.

  • Fon Riego

    Very nice article, keep on it!!! ūüėČ

  • kuzzybear

    Keep the pick. Draft Lilliard, if available, draft PJ3 if not. IF Drummond is available, make the best deal you can for AB and move on.

  • hateslosing

    Great article, I especially like the analysis of the second round options, that’s something you don’t see enough of.¬†

  • KuH

    Just out of curiosity, did you run the numbers on Kendall Marshall?

    • I did. ¬†PER fourth from last (just ahead of Rivers). 38th in WS/40. ¬†Database best Ast/TO ratio. ¬†3rd worst points per play. ¬†Good pure PG when playing with good players. ¬†Unfortunately not much else to like.

      • KuH

        ¬†Thanks.¬† It’s clear he’s not a good scorer, who doesn’t shoot much.¬† I think PER rewards high volume shooters and scorers, so the scoring alone gives him a low PER.¬† I don’t know if WS also penalizes low volume shooters/scorers.

        P.S. I read somewhere that his 3pt shooting improved dramatically during the course of the year (from the 20%s to the 40%s): I don’t know if this shows up in any stats, or if it is even material vs. just random.

  • Puffer

    Nice thoughtful piece. Looks like many of the replies didn’t read the part about ”
    All else being equal, players will be drafted higher if the player is younger, recently appeared in the Final Four, and is relatively taller,”¬†¬†which ws the point of the whole article (sigh).

    Always enjoy your stuff Tom and immediately read it ahead of anything else. Do you write any place else? Blog, articles, Facebook, whatever? Rather read more of you than most of the other stuff out there. ¬†Haven’t been getting my shot of stats frequently enough since Ed Kupfor left AltRaps.

  • Andre

    So what about Perry jones? His talent and ceiling is EXTREMELY high? Tashawn Taylor? a good pg that we could snag in the 2nd round.. sigh

  • dribbles

    Great post. I’m all over using the 37th on Crowder. He’s a couple of inches shorter than ideal, but he busts his tail out there and you know he’s going to rebound and defend well, at a minimum. He can also shoot at a decent clip (room for improvement but good numbers), but the thing I really like about him is that he combines all-out effort with good b-ball IQ. Hustle and smarts is a nice combo to have. If he can improve his ball handling the guy could be a real steal.

    I don’t have strong opinions about the 8th pick. I think Lamb could be a solid player but he looks pretty one-dimensional right now and that’s one of the main issues with DeRozan. Lillard looks like a better version of Bayless but I can’t really get excited about him. Nobody really stands out to me. I’m fine with trading down or out if the return is good.

  • Statement

    So Jeremy Lamb is¬†a volume scorer who doesn’t rebound?¬† Welcome to Toronto, Jeremy.

    • Destro

      I guarantee we wont be told to be patient he’s still developing into his 5th season….

  • Timo in Waterloo

    I guess I am in the minority in regards to the Three’s we already have on the roster… I like the skill sets and attributes of both James Johnson and Linus Kleiza… I think JJ still has more upside and if the staff continue to work with them can be an effective 3… defending, passing, ball handling and scoring.. and Linus has shown on the world stage he can be a very effective player and has a tough , hard nosed attitude … let the knees heal properly.. internal growth may resolve this situation better than some of the proposed alternatives…

    • Statement

      I too like James Johnson.  Kleiza could thrive in a backup role like he did in Denver. 

      IMHO, and I might be in the minority on this one, I’d rather have James Johnson than Demar Derozan.¬† To me, upgrading SG is the best way to improve the team.

  • guest

    Tom Liston,

    If you read this comment I was just wondering how you would explain why you and Hollinger see Lillard so differently. ¬†Hollinger’s evaluation of Lillard is a lot less flattering and he feels that Lillard played a weak schedule against weak competition and as a result has inflated stats. ¬†That has always been something that made me not want to see the Raptors draft him. I think this is a case of where stats really might not tell the truth about who this player really is. I don’t get this one.

    • This: “Obviously his numbers were put up against lesser competition than most players in our database. But he also wasn‚Äôt playing with a squad full of NCAA superstars either, which also enabled defenses to key in on him.” ¬†The former is taken into account, but the latter should be a partial offset. ¬†Plus, older players are discounted more. ¬†Hollinger has him at 18th. ¬†He has Crowder at 44th, which is a mystery. ¬†Note he has Waiters at 4. ¬† At 8, Hollinger has Terrance Jones, who does not appear to be a great fit for the Raptors.

  • guest

    Thanks.  I remember when the Suns saw Amare during the draft workouts, they asked him not to work out for anyone else and he shut it down.  They knew what they had.  I think Waiters is the same deal.  It did not take someone long to figure out they had a diamond in the rough.

  • Interesting interview by Doug Smith:–raptors-weigh-intriguing-nba-draft-options¬†
    “While Colangelo would not name names as far as who he might pick, it‚Äôs not difficult to figure it out. He expects Anthony Davis and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist of Kentucky, Brad Beal of Florida, Thomas Robinson of Kansas,¬†Weber State‚Äôs Damian Lillard¬†and, likely,¬†Harrison Barnes of North Carolina¬†to be gone ‚ÄĒ leaving Duke‚Äôs Austin Rivers, Dion Waiters of Syracuse and Ohio State‚Äôs Jared Sullinger as possibilities at No. 8.”