The first round is over and lacked surprises. All of the players expected to be drafted, were drafted. Most of the selections were underclassmen whose upside warranted a high selection. Teams will hit and miss by using that methodology in their draft strategy. NBA teams have to take a few risks to keep up with the rest of the league.
You can make the playoffs by selecting blue chip prospects in the first round, but you win championships by having a deep bench. You will find those guys in the second round.
The last few years have seen all of the established players who spent all four years in college. Teams can draft players who can contribute right away. I give my analysis for each pick in the second round of the 2012 NBA Draft.
31. Charlotte Bobcats – Jeffrey Taylor (Vanderbilt) – He’s a 6’7 small forward who is a catch and shoot player. What sets him apart is the ability to guard a point guard. Taylor was a four year player at Vandy and Charlotte is looking for guys who can contribute right away. I like this pick because the Bobcats need guys who are NBA ready.
32. Washington Wizards – Tomas Satoransky (Czech Republic) – Santoransky is a close friend of Jan Veseley who was drafted last year. He will be stashed for at least two seasons overseas and could end up being a 6’7 point guard when he arrives in Washington. He has great ball-handling skills and makes things happen when the ball is in his hands.
33. Cleveland Cavaliers (traded to Dallas) – Bernard James (Florida State) – A former member of the Air Force who served multiple tours in Iraq. He is 27 years old and can contribute right away. His best attribute is his ability to block and rebound. This is low risk as a second-round pick, but his presence in the locker room is worth it.
34. Cleveland Cavaliers (traded to Dallas) – Jae Crowder (Marquette) – The Big East Player of the Year who played four years at Marquette. Dallas seems to be focused on guys who can contribute right away and leaving the projects for the rest of the league. He is explosive and impressed me by standing out in a loaded Big East conference.
35. Golden State Warriors – Draymond Green (Michigan State) – He is a high volume rebounder who has the versatility to play both forward positions. He is a bit undersized to play a lot of minutes atthe power forward position. He is a proven winner which is always an underrated trait in the NBA.
36. Sacramento Kings (traded to Indiana) – Orlando Johnson (UC Santa Barbara) – He’s a mature pure scorer who is his school’s all-time leading scorer. If the Kings kept this pick, it would have been confusing since they have a lot of players with range. The Pacers need a guy like Johnson, so it all makes sense.
37. Toronto Raptors – Quincy Acy (Baylor) – I am surprised that he fell this far in the draft. He is super athletic and can come in and be an energy guy. He just works the entire time he’s on the floor. Every team needs a guy like Acy on their team.
38. Denver Nuggets – Quincy Miller (Baylor) – I like this Quincy even more than Quincy Acy. He came out after his freshman year and Denver can afford to let him sit. He can put up some points, which fits Denver’s offensive style.
39. Detroit Pistons – Khris Middleton (Texas A&M) – He is a late-blooming prospect. He has a soft touch with a consistent 22-foot jumper. He will be a project for Detroit but he could be worth the time in the long run.
40. Portland Trail Blazers – Will Barton (Memphis) – He has first-round talent but didn’t completely put it together in college. He could benefit from a season in the NBDL to get some seasoning.
41. Portland Trail Blazers (traded to Brooklyn Nets) – Tyshawn Taylor (Kansas) – He is a proven winner with above average skills. He could be a very nice backup point guard in the NBA.
42. Milwaukee Bucks – Doron Lamb (Kentucky) – He can light up the floor with his deep range. He is efficient with nearly 50% from downtown. He has some ball-handling skills if needed. He is a Michael Redd clone, so Milwaukee knows all about that.
43. Atlanta Hawks – Mike Scott (Virginia) – He is a fifth year season who has ankle concerns. He was first-team all ACC with great scoring ability. He is hard to cover and will be a nice bench scorer starting out in the NBA.
44. Detroit Pistons – Kim English (Missouri) – He is a gym rat who is a hard worker. He is only 6’6 and he played power forward last year. He is a pure shooting guard with unbelievable range behind the arc.
45. Philadelphia 76ers (traded to Miami) – Justin Hamilton (LSU) – He is a big guy that could help Miami’s need of size in the paint. He isn’t very athletic, but can rebound and take up space in the paint.
46. New Orleans Hornets – Darius Miller (Kentucky) – He is the lone senior on Kentucky who was the leader on a National Championship squad. He is a mature player who can contribute right away. He can help with the development of Anthony Davis, who he played with for one season.
47. Utah Jazz – Kevin Murphy (Tennessee Tech) – He is the only player to score 50+ points in D-1 college basketball last season. He is a pure shooter with skills to get to the free throw line. He didn’t face elite talent, but stood out in his conference.
48. New York Knicks – Kostas Papanikolaou (Greece) – This is a value pick at #48. He won’t be in the NBA for a couple years, but he was great in Greek League. He was the best player during the Euro League Final last season.
49. Orlando Magic – Kyle O’Quinn (Norfolk State) – He was the nation’s top mid-major player this season. He’s a big guy (6’10 242 lbs.) and has a wingspan of 7’5. He might surprise some people and make Orlando’s squad.
50. Denver Nuggets – Izzet Turkyilmaz (Turkey) – He’s a 6’11 thin power forward who may never play in the NBA. This is an extreme reach, but at #50, it’s worth a shot in the dark.
51. Boston Celtics – Kris Joseph (Syracuse) – A good stand-still 3-point shooter. He could help fill the void if Ray Allen leaves via free agency. He already has something in common with Allen…he isn’t a good defender.
52. Golden State Warriors – Ognjen Kuzmic (Bosnia And Herzegovina) – He’s a 7’0 center with only one year of high-level competition. He may never make it to the NBA, but once again, teams use late second-round picks on players worth taking a flyer on.
53. Los Angeles Clippers – Furkan Aldemir (Turkey) – He’s 20 years old with major rebounding skills aat only 6’9. He averaged 15 rebounds per game in an under-20 tournament.
54. Philadelphia 76ers – Tornike Shengelia (Georgia) – He is a scorer who attacks the basket. He lacks a good jumper who will be overseas for a few seasons. He goes by the nickname ‘Toko’.
55. Dallas Mavericks – Darius Johnson-Odom (Marquette) – He has a 40-inch vertical who can drive in the paint. He is a hard worker who can make an NBA team.
56. Toronto Raptors – Tomislav Zubcic (Croatia) – He’s a big project who will stay oversears (surprise, surprise). He has average rebounding skills and Toronto hopes that he improves and can bring him to the NBA in a few years.
57. Brooklyn Nets – Ilkan Karaman (Turkey) – Another Turkish player drafted in the second round of this year’s draft. He is an undersized power forward who will either be a big hit or a big miss.
58. Minnesota Timberwolves – Robbie Hummel (Purdue) – He was once a projected first-round draft pick, but was derailed by serious knee injuries. He is a two-time All-American and can really help Minnesota. This could be a huge steal if he can overcome his past knee problems.
59. San Antonio Spurs – Marcus Denman (Missouri) – I love this pick. He is an undersized guard who isn’t afraid to take big shots. He impressed me in many games this season and along with Hummel could surprise a lot of people by making the team and earning playing time.
60. Los Angeles Lakers – Robert Sacre (Gonzaga) – 7’0 260 lbs…he’s a big guy with ball skills. He is a good rebounder, but lacks shot blocking ability. The last three picks all have the ability to make their respective teams.