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I'm sure Portland appreciates what he has done for the city, but that is a shit ton of money for a small market team who has to pay Lillard the max soon. Along with the worst bench in the league.


You aren't getting anywhere in the Western Conference structured like that.

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I'm sure Portland appreciates what he has done for the city, but that is a shit ton of money for a small market team who has to pay Lillard the max soon. Along with the worst bench in the league.


You aren't getting anywhere in the Western Conference structured like that.


Which I just said, but what other option are you presenting?


We let him walk and we aren't going to make up his production with one or two players that we overpay to come play in Portland. 

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Which I just said, but what other option are you presenting?


We let him walk and we aren't going to make up his production with one or two players that we overpay to come play in Portland.

Tough spot man.
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Sometimes I miss when the sixers were just below average and I remember how long that lasted


I can deal with two and maybe three tank seasons

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Kyle Lowry signing with the Heat onceFA begins


$9-10 mil per year, at least three-yr deal


EDIT: looks like it's a lie but where there's smoke there's fire

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Every year I do draft grades just hours after the draft. In my day job, I'm a college professor -- this exercise feels like giving students final grades after the first day of class. There's so much we just don't know about teams, minutes and fit. In other words, these grades are subjective and unfair. In truth, the time to grade this draft is at least two years from now.


So why do it? To get an instant reaction on the future of every team in the league. What I write now won't be the definitive word on this draft, but it's a way to start the conversation.


Here's our take on how every team in the league did on Thursday:




Round 1: Adreian Payne (15)


Round 2: Walter Tavares (43), Lamar Patterson (48)


Analysis: The Hawks went with a couple of seniors and a huge upside pick. Payne, who was only drafted this low because at 23 he's old for the draft and may have less room for improvement, gives the Hawks a big man who can stretch the floor and play down low. Patterson is the sort of blue-collar swingman that the Hawks love; he does a little bit of everything, but has zero sexiness to his game. Both guys contribute right now, which is what the team went into draft day wanting.


Tavares has crazy wingspan and huge hands -- the raw tools to be a dominant big man. But he's really far away. The Hawks will let him continue to develop in Spain and see what they have down the road.





Round 1: Marcus Smart (6), James Young (17)


Round 2: None


Analysis: This draft isn't going to turn around the Celtics overnight. But the team landed two foundational players to rebuild with or trade. Smart is tough, a leader and someone who competes every second, sometimes almost more than you'd like. He's going to be a nightmare for other guards defensively. Somewhere, Brad Stevens is smiling.


Smart also has the versatility to play both the 1 and 2,  which gives the Celtics options when talking Rajon Rondo trades this summer.


Young is an upside pick. He has great size for his position and the potential to be a really good shooter. He's not an elite athlete, isn't a great defender and is one dimensional, but he's one of the youngest players in the draft and worth trying to develop. Overall, a good night for Celtics fans. They didn't get their franchise player, but did get talent.






Round 1: None.


Round 2: Markel Brown (44), Xavier Thames (59), Cory Jefferson (60)


Analysis: The Nets bankrolled their way into the second round to get some interesting seniors who could evolve into rotation players. Of the three, Thames intrigues me the most. He can shoot and might even be a point guard. Brown is an elite athlete who can defend. Jefferson has an NBA body and has been improving every year at Baylor.


None move the needle for a capped out Nets team, but they are interesting second-round assets who might be able to play down the road.





Round 1: Noah Vonleh (9), P.J. Hairston (26)


Round 2: Dwight Powell (45), Semaj Christon ( 55)


Analysis: It's hard to believe that the Hornets are adding four rookies to a team with an itch for the postseason. But the truth is they got some serious talent with all four picks. Vonleh slid because teams worried he wasn't going to maximize his obvious physical talents. He can shoot, run the floor and play in the post, but questions about his motor and toughness and conditioning caused him to slide a bit. He's a steal here, albeit a bit repetitive with Cody Zeller.


Hairston would've been a lottery pick had he not been kicked off the Tar Heels team for various offenses. He can shoot and has an NBA body. The Hornets need shooting, and Hairston can fill it up right now. Powell has talent, but he has never maximized it. Christon is a great athlete with good size at the point guard position. Both second-rounders could make the roster.





Round 1: Doug McDermott (11)


Round 2: Cameron Bairstow (49)


Analysis: The Bulls really wanted a shooter, and packaged 16 and 19 to get their guy. McDermott can shoot the lights out, is ready to play right now and fits a need. He's a home run for the Bulls at No. 11. I'm not sure how Tom Thibodeau will feel about McDermott's defense, but offensively, he's perfect for the Bulls.


Bairstow is tough, an old-school power forward, but he lacks athleticism and will likely start his career overseas.






Round 1: Andrew Wiggins (1)


Round 2: Joe Harris (33)


Analysis: The Cavs, in my opinion, did the right thing here. They could've taken Jabari Parker and justified it by saying they needed a player who could help them now. Instead they took the player with the most upside and showed a willingness to let him develop into the best player in the draft. I think Wiggins is a better fit for the team anyway. He brings defense, he can play the 2 or 3, and he won't need the ball in his hands to make an impact on the team.


Wiggins has as much or more talent than Kyrie Irving and, in time, will be the guy they build around.


Harris is a shooter and is tough as nails. Though he's not a great defender, he brings great effort. Overall, the Cavs improved their team this year and finally got a second long-term franchise building block next to Irving. It was a good night, Cavs fans.





Round 1: None


Round 2: None


Analysis: The Mavs traded this year's first-rounder to the Thunder. They traded last year's first, Shane Larkin, in a deal that netted them Tyson Chandler and Raymond Felton. The Mavs haven't shown much interest in developing young players.


They want to win one more title for Dirk Nowitzki and are trying to put together a roster that could lure LeBron James or Carmelo Anthony to Dallas. I doubt they get either guy, and there's the rub -- the Mavs keep sacrificing the future hoping to hit a free-agent home run. Instead, they hit singles and an occasional double. I'm not sure the guy they would've drafted at 34 was really going to make a difference, but their disregard for the draft may come back to haunt them someday.





Round 1: Jusuf Nurkic (16), Gary Harris (19)


Round 2: Nikola Jokic (41)


Analysis: The Nuggets got their real prize a few hours before the draft when they traded Evan Fournier and a second-round pick for Arron Afflalo. Then they shored up their team by adding two international big men with interesting futures.


Nurkic is huge and, if he can stay in shape and stay out of trouble, could be a load in the NBA someday. Jokic is a skilled big man who can shoot and has a high basketball IQ. Both could help them down the road, but it was nabbing Harris, whom I had ranked No. 10 on my Big Board, that was the real story for Denver.


Harris slid because of his lack of size, but he's one of the few two-way players in the draft. He is tough, can play multiple positions and can shoot. He's going to learn under Afflalo for a year and then, if Afflalo leaves via free agency, he could end up with a much bigger role in Denver.





Round 1: None


Round 2: Spencer Dinwiddie (38)


Analysis: The Pistons had their heart broken on draft night when the Cavs jumped ahead of them to the No. 1 pick and they were pushed down one spot -- just low enough to be forced to send their first-rounder to the Hornets. It was a major blow. With players such as Noah Vonleh, Doug McDermott and Elfrid Payton still left on the board, the Pistons must have watched the draft and cringed the entire time.


The good news is that they did get a nice player in Dinwiddie at 38. Dinwiddie would have been a mid-first-rounder if he hadn't torn his ACL at midseason. He has size for his position, a high basketball IQ and knows how to score. His lack of elite athleticism limited his upside, but he has talent and could help the Pistons down the road.





Round 1: None


Round 2: None


Analysis:The Warriors traded their first-round pick last July to clear a bunch of cap space to sign Andre Iguodala. I think it was worth the 23rd pick in the draft this year. I like Rodney Hood, but he's no Iguodala.





Round 1: Clint Capela (25)


Round 2: Nick Johnson (42)


Analysis: The Rockets are busy trying to clear cap space for a run at LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony. Again, I'm not sure how likely it is they land either guy, but both players are worth the effort. So the Rockets took a player in Capela, whom they can leave in Europe to develop -- and he needs the time. Capela is long and athletic, but very raw. His analytics numbers were off the charts for Kevin Pelton, but watching him in games was pretty painful. He has a ways to go.


Johnson, who is tough and super-athletic, could help now if the Rockets have a roster spot. He defends and can shoot it a bit. If he were a few inches taller, he would've gone much, much higher.





Round 1: None


Round 2: None


Analysis: The Pacers traded this pick to the Suns as part of a deal that netted them Luis Scola. It's well enough. The Pacers are in title mode and actually have enough young talent to justify going after veterans in free agency to address their needs. Whomever they would've gotten at No. 27 wouldn't help them now.





Round 1: Chris Wilcox (28)


Round 2: None


Analysis: Wilcox is the type of college veteran shooter who could help the Clippers immediately. He's 23 years old, is a good athlete and has deep range. But didn't they draft that guy last year in Reggie Bullock?





Round 1: Julius Randle (7)


Round 2: Jordan Clarkson (46)


Analysis: I really liked this draft for the Lakers. They grabbed one of the three most NBA-ready players in the draft. Randle plays with the type of toughness and motor that Kobe Bryant will respect, and will immediately be a rebound machine. I'm not sure he doesn't have more upside than we saw in Kentucky. He was on a team with a lot of alpha dogs. If his foot ends up being OK (there is an issue, but the Lakers aren't too worried) he's a very good value here.


And I like Clarkson as an athletic combo guard who, if he shoots it as well as he did in the first half of the season, still has upside.


Randle, alone, can't turn around the Lakers, but he's one of only three rookies who can hold their own from Day 1 on a team that will be in the hunt for a playoff berth in the West.





Round 1: Jordan Adams (22)


Round 2: Jarnell Stokes (35)


Analysis: It looks like, whatever the shakeups in Memphis, John Hollinger still has a voice. Kevin Pelton would give this draft an A+, as he had Adams ranked fifth and Stokes No. 12 in his WARP projections. If his formula is right, the Grizzlies got great value.


Adams is one of the best scorers in the draft, but he's also one of the least athletic 2-guards we've seen come along in the draft for a while. He was a beast on the offensive boards and essentially put up identical numbers to Randle. If both of these players perform as well as Pelton projects, the Grizzlies probably deserve an A. If they perform as well as scouts projected (they had them both rated much lower), the Grizzlies may have missed a few opportunities with players such as Rodney Hood and P.J. Hairston.





Round 1: Shabazz Napier (24)


Round 2: None


Analysis: I reported on Wednesday that the Heat were making a concerted effort to move up in the draft to land Napier. He has a huge fan in LeBron James, who tweeted during the NCAA title championship game that he believed Napier was the best point guard in the draft.


With the way Mario Chalmers and Norris Cole played in the NBA Finals, you can understand why the Heat may want an upgrade. I'm not sure it's fair to put all that on Napier as a rookie. He's undersized for his position and not an elite athlete, but he's got huge onions. He won't be afraid to play with James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh. And when he gets rolling, watch out.





Round 1: Jabari Parker (2)


Round 2: Damien Inglis (31), Johnny O'Bryant (36)


Analysis: I'm happy for the Bucks and I'm happy for Jabari. This is the guy the Bucks wanted at No. 1, and this is the team Jabari wanted to go to. The Bucks needed a franchise type player to build around. Parker's that guy. He wanted a team that would build around him, that would treat him as a focal point of the team. The Bucks will do that. Milwaukee wanted an alpha dog scorer and a leader in the locker room. Parker can do both.


The Bucks will make him a stretch power forward and I think, ultimately, that's the position he'll thrive at. I think Dante Exum may have more upside -- but the Bucks had to go for the sure thing and they got him.


Inglis is a good athlete, has great length and an NBA body. He's still learning how to play, and the Bucks will give him space to grow. He has a broken foot, but he'll come over and be with the team right away. O'Bryant was one of the few big men in this draft who can really score around the basket. He's not going to be a star, but he's a decent rotation player someday.





Round 1: Zach LaVine (13)


Round 2: Glenn Robinson III (40), Alessandro Gentile (53)


Analysis: Flip Saunders swung for the fences, and we'll see if he connects. LaVine and Robinson are two of the most athletic players in the draft. LaVine can also shoot it and play some point, which made him the more attractive pick. If he fills out his skill set, he'll be one of the top 10 players in this draft.


Robinson has a longer road ahead. He's stuck between positions and doesn't always play hard. But the raw talent is there and if the Wolves are patient, I think he has a future. Gentile is a terrific scorer from Italy -- wild, but productive. He's not a great athlete, but I could see him in the league someday.





Round 1: None


Round 2: Russ Smith (47)


Analysis: The Pelicans traded away their first-rounder to Philly as part of the Jrue Holiday trade last year. Holiday was solid for them and, though I'm sure they secretly coveted the guy that did go at 10 -- hometown point guard Elfrid Payton. They traded last year's second-round pick, Pierre Jackson, for Smith. They are similar players -- small, athletic, fast, shoot-first point guards. If Smith can ever maintain control he has a chance to be a change-of-pace guard off the bench, but that's a pretty big if.





Round 1: None


Round 2: Cleanthony Early (34), Thanasis Antetokounmpo (51), Louis Labyrie (57)


Analysis: The Knicks traded away their first-round pick to the Nuggets as part of the Carmelo Anthony deal. They could've used a player such as Doug McDermott, who went No. 11. That was a major blow, but you can't fault them for giving that up for Melo. The Knicks worked hard to get into the second round and, of the group, Early might have been worth it. I liked him a lot this year. He's big and can shoot it. Teams are concerned that he can't make the transition to small forward, but as long as he can guard a position, he'll be OK.


Antetokounmpo was passed on by both the Bucks (who drafted his brother) and the Sixers (who had him playing for their D-League team) multiple times. Think that was a signal, Knicks? He's athletic and plays hard, but not sure he's a game-changer. Labyrie, by most accounts from scouts, is unlikely to ever play in the NBA.





Round 1: Mitch McGary (21) Josh Huestis (29)


Round 2: None


Analysis: Didn't the Thunder have this draft last year? Steven Adams was the big, athletic center with the high motor. Andre Roberson was the scrappy defender and rebounder who was undersized for his position. They must have loved that draft so much they decided to do it again!


I like McGary. He was probably a bit underrated. The Hornets wanted him badly and were trying to get up to 22 to get him. If his back is OK, he's a good pick here. And I get the Huestis pick -- he's tough, plays defense and will fit in. I just wonder why they had to draft the same two guys again.





Round 1: Aaron Gordon (4), Elfrid Payton (10)


Round 2: Roy Devyn Marble (56)


Analysis: Well, I guess we know what Rob Hennigan likes. For the second year in a row the Magic GM drafted super-athletic, defensive-minded players. Adding Gordon and Payton with Victor Oladipo gives the Magic three versatile defenders who can lock up anyone. I love the potential of both players added on Thursday.


If Gordon ever develops a jump shot he could be a superstar. Ditto for Payton. They do just about everything else well (though they both could get stronger). But where is the offense coming from? With Arron Afflalo gone and Jameer Nelson likely to be bought out, the Magic are left with Tobias Harris and Nikola Vucevic as their primary options. Though the Magic don't have to have everything figured out right now.


I personally think Dante Exum was a better choice at 4. But getting Payton, my sleeper in the draft, at 10 lessens my objection. Marble is a no-nonsense forward who does everything well and nothing great. Sort of like their second rounder last year.





Round 1: Joel Embiid (3), Dario Saric (12)


Round 2: K.J. McDaniels (32), Jerami Grant (39), Vasilije Micic (52), Nemanja Dangubic (54), Jordan McRae (58)


Analysis: GM Sam Hinkie has proven to be a master of collecting assets. Embiid, on pure talent and potential, may be the best prospect in the draft. Saric was a top-10 prospect as well that the Sixers had coveted for a while. Had Embiid been healthy and had Saric been available to come to the NBA this year, they would get an A. However, Embiid is likely out the whole season recovering from foot surgery. Saric has a three-year deal in Turkey and won't play in the NBA for a couple of seasons. How do you rebuild without your talent on the floor?


I know what the Sixers will say. Nerlens Noel is their rookie this year. Embiid will be next year. Saric the year after that. But are Sixers fans and ownership willing to be that bad for that long? At some point you have to move from asset collection to building a team.


McDaniels and Grant also have huge upside. They are super athletic. But like the rest of the team Hinkie has put together, they can't shoot. Micic and Dangubic are both intriguing prospects down the road, but neither is likely to play in the NBA anytime soon. McRae may be the only one really ready to contribute right now, ironically.


In five years, if Embiid is a superstar and Saric is the next Toni Kukoc, my criticisms will seem petty. But it's a long road, Sixers fans. A long road. And the 2015 NBA draft isn't as loaded as this draft is and is mostly filled with bigs, the one thing the Sixers are now stockpiled with.





Round 1: T.J. Warren (14), Tyler Ennis (18), Bogdan Bogdanovic (27)


Round 2: Alec Brown (50)


Analysis: The Suns addressed three big needs in the draft. They needed a small forward who can score the ball. Warren can do that. He's an incredible scorer who just has a nose for the hoop. They needed a back-up point guard and Ennis is as steady as they come. They also needed another 2-guard, and while I doubt Bogdanovic comes over right now, he's a terrific scorer who could play in the NBA someday.


What the Suns didn't add, and what I think they could use more of, is athleticism. Neither Warren, Ennis nor Bogdanovic are great athletes. All three of these players have the potential to be solid rotation players. Ennis has starter potential someday and Warren's ceiling may be even higher than that. But I'm not sure what they got here puts them into true contention in the West any time soon.





Round 1: None


Round 2: None


Analysis: The Blazers sent this pick as part of the Gerald Wallace trade a while ago. Wallace is no longer around which means losing this pick had to hurt a little. Though, I don't think pick No. 24, which ultimately became Shabazz Napier, was going to make a major impact on this team.





Round 1: Nik Stauskas (8)


Round 2: None


Analysis: I'm a pretty big Stauskas fan and can't fault the Kings for taking him here -- he was worthy of being picked this high. He's a great shooter and he's fearless, two qualities that go well together. My issue is fit. The Kings drafted Ben McLemore last year to play the same position and do the same thing. And before that they drafted Jimmer Fredette (now with the Bulls) to be that guy.


Meanwhile they need help at point guard, someone to protect the rim and players that can defend. Stauskas is none of those things and other players like Elfrid Payton and Noah Vonleh were on the board who could help in these capacities. If the Kings have another deal up their sleeve for McLemore (like for Rajon Rondo, for example) I'll feel better about the selection.





Round 1: Kyle Anderson (30)


Round 2: None


Analysis: I think it was fate that the closest player we've ever seen to Boris Diaw just happened to be drafted by the Spurs the year Diaw hits the free-agent market. I suspect the Spurs will re-sign Diaw and empower him to mentor Anderson. Both guys are essentially huge point guards who see the floor as well as any little guy in the league.


Anderson can rebound and even proved this season he can shoot it a bit. He can't defend anyone, which is a problem, but I love this fit. If he's going to succeed in the NBA, this is the team to do it with.





Round 1: Bruno Caboclo (20)


Round 2: DeAndre Daniels (37)


Analysis: I don't know what to make of GM Masai Ujiri's decision to stump everyone by taking Caboclo at 20. Caboclo has a huge, 7-foot-7 wingspan, can shoot it, is athletic and will draw inevitable comparisons to Giannis Antetokounmpo. Except, if you thought Antetokounmpo was raw, just wait until you see Caboclo. Whereas the Bucks had the freedom, once the season went into the tank, to give Antetokounmpo minutes right away, I don't see that as an option in Toronto.


Maybe he's the next Giannis, but I didn't talk to anyone in the league who thought Caboclo wouldn't have been there at 37. Which means Toronto missed out on adding another piece. I know the Raptors were hoping for Tyler Ennis or Gary Harris to fall there, but they went nuclear when neither didn't. Daniels is also a long, lanky 3 who can shoot, but he was inconsistent in his three years at UConn and I wonder how much of his stock rise came from a strong NCAA tournament. The Raptors didn't get better Thursday night. Not this year. Not next year. The hope is that, down the road, this gamble pays off.





Round 1: Dante Exum (5), Rodney Hood (23)


Round 2: None.


Analysis: The Jazz had their hearts broken when they slid to fifth in the lottery. But everything worked out for them Thursday night. They got the guy rated third on their board, Exum, at No. 5, when both the Sixers and Magic passed on him. Then they got the guy rated 15th on their board, Hood, at No. 23, when he suddenly slid. In the process they shored up two big needs.


Trey Burke was good for them this past season, but they really need some size at the point. Burke and Exum will play together at first and eventually I think Exum will take the starting position from Burke. More importantly, the Jazz needed a franchise cornerstone, someone with star power. I think Exum could be that guy and so do the Jazz. They also wanted a wing with size to give them shooting, and Hood fits the bill. I know Jazz fans will feel like this draft wasn't a home run without Jabari Parker. But it was at least a triple, and given where they were drafting, that's an A in my book.





Round 1: None


Round 2: None


Analysis: The Wizards traded their first-round pick to the Suns for Marcin Gortat. Given Gortat's play for the Wizards this past season and their return to the playoffs, I'd say he was worth the 18th pick that the Suns used on Tyler Ennis.


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How didnt we? We got our guy and one of the best players in the draft

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That means every team in the top 12 or so should get an A, since they all got "their" player.

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We r a good team tho and filled a need. We arent the 6ers collecting talent

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Draft grades should be determined on good picks that help out the team. Not if the team is already good or not.

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Tanking is a disease

For the sixers it's the cure, previous owners/management really fucked up bad

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Blazers have a good future with Lillard and Aldridge. Just got to get the right veteren players to sign there and they could be a contender

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Disrespecting the Brazilian KD

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Tanking is a disease

mediocrity is the cure!

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I would love to see the Blazers pick up Chandler Parsons.  For the money he is a great pickup if Houston lets him go. 

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