Thursday, June 23, 2011

Live Blog: The 2011 NBA Draft

When is that Jimmer going to be picked?
Days like today are the main reason that Don and I decided to continue the podcast through the summer months. Sports never stops. It doesn't matter if the biggest league in the world is over 100 days into a lockout. Who would have thought only one day after the NHL Awards the Flyers would dump their Captain and fellow 2003 draft class stud, Jeff Carter? I didn't go to bed last night thinking that I would wake up to find out that the Sabres were waiting to find out if Robin Regehr would waive his no trade clause, become a Sabre, and position the team to focus on centers when free agency begins on July 1. That is how sports goes.

Anyway, the job facing me tonight is much more difficult than the job last night. I can crack wise about anything, but can I convince you that I have any idea what Cleveland is going to do with the first and fourth overall pick tonight? That is going to be difficult. To be honest, I am not sure why the Cavs have two picks that high? I get the first overall pick. They were lucky enough to turn the first miserable season without LeBron James into a victory in the lottery. Google. The answer to the question is that the Cavs got the pick from the Los Angeles Clippers. The Clippers were once the Buffalo Braves and two years ago drafted the best Oklahoma Sooners basketball player since Mookie Blaylock. I guess they are my favorite NBA team. With no Sooners on anyone's radar tonight, and my beloved Clippers void a pick, you can count on good honest unbiased journalism. 

Here we go, The 2011 NBA Draft Life Blog featuring #limitednbaknowlege. 

7:30: One of the most popular aspects of the NBA Draft is something that I just cant relate to, fashion. In the summer, I wear shorts and a t-shirt. In the winter, I wear jeans and a t-shirt. My idea of dressing up is picking out what Saints jersey I am going to wear on Sunday's during football season. The players at the NBA draft have style. These guys wear suits that stretch the limits of fabric to the point that these unique outfits couldn't be contained at an average Hugo Boss store.

7:35: David Stern kicks off the draft and gets some of the Garry Bettman treatment with a loud round of boos. 

7:37: The Cavaliers are on the clock and they have only five minutes. This pick is actually the Clippers picks. Austin Carr, Brad Daugherty, and LeBron James are the three players that have been picked first overall by the Cavaliers. Kyrie Irving (Duke) is the name that most people think will be selected first overall. He is a 19-year old kid that played one season at Duke. His father played pro ball in Australia and that's where Kyrie was born. 

7:39: The Commissioner makes it official by announcing Kyrie Irving as the first overall pick. He joins Elton Brant as the only Duke players to be drafted first overall. Kyrie only played 11 games at Duke because of an injury he suffered against Butler. Kyrie is the second guard in a row to be selected first overall (John Wall was first overall last year) in the NBA Draft. 

7:42: The World Wide Leader is having their fare share of technical problems as the sound cuts in and out while Kyrie is interviewed for the first time as a pro. Minnesota is on the clock.  

7:44: Jay Bilas is responsible for the big board that is scrolling on the screen. He has Derrick Williams from Arizona as the best player available. Williams was fantastic during the NCAA Tournament. 

7:46: Mr. Stern announces Derrick Williams as the second overall pick of the NBA Draft. Williams stands at 6'8'' and was the Pac-10 player of the year last season. Derrick seems like a really nice kid and handles the post-pick interview with style. He says he would rather play the three than the four. Andy Katz says that Minnesota is not going to be trading Williams as many have speculated. 

7:49: The Utah Jazz are on the clock for the first of two lottery picks. I miss Stockton's shorts. 

7:51: The Jazz select Enes Kanter from Turkey. Turkey isn't a college it's a country. Kanter planned on playing at Kentucky, but he was ruled ineligible by the NCAA because of money that he earned playing in the Turkey professional league. Instead, he just spent the year as a student on the Kentucky campus learning the language and understanding the culture. Kanter thanks Kentucky and seems to be very grateful for the time he spent there despite not being able to play basketball. 

7:54: The Cavs are back on the clock. Even I know that by picking a point guard with the first pick it would make sense for Cleveland to pick a scorer. 

7:56: This draft moves fast. The Cavs select forward Tristan Thompson from Texas. OH NO. This kid is from Toronto, he played his college ball at Texas, and that makes him someone that I won't be cheering for any time soon. I need to a second to collect myself. I was not prepared to be hit with this kind of double disaster. More audio problems for ESPN. 

8:00: Thank god for YouTube. 

8:02: The Raptors select a European player whose name I am going to have to look up to be able to spell, Jonas Valanciunas. He is the second European taken in the first round. "I have not so strong body." -Jonas

8:05: The Wizards are on the clock. The first thing I have to say is that they should be called the Bullets. Wizards is a terrible name. John Wall was selected by the Bullets last year first overall. Stuart Scott with a great stat, the Bullets were 3-38 on the road last season. 

8:07: The Wizards pick a kid from the Czech Republic, Jan Vesely. Vesely is joined at the draft by a stunning girlfriend that should appear in Hot Clicks (Update: Our friends at SportsGrid have this on the future Mrs. Vesely.) He looks really thin in the highlights but he lists at 6'10' 240. Is he the European Blake Griffin? 

8:11: The Sacramento Kings select  Bismack Biyombo a 6'9'' forward from the Dem. Republic of the Congo. The Kings actually made the selection for the Charlotte Bobcats. There was a three team deal earlier between the Bobcats, Bucks and Kings.

Details of the Trade:

Bucks get: 
Stephen Jackson
Shaun Livingston
Beno Udrith
Tobias Harris

Kings get:
John Salmons
Jimmer Fredette

Bobcats get:
Corey Maggette
Bismack Biyombo

8:18: The Detroit Pistons select Brandon Knight from the University of Kentucky. Brandon is the second one and done college basketball player to be picked in the draft so far. 

8:24: The Bobcats select Kemba Walker from UCONN with the 9th pick of the NBA Draft. Walker was incredible during the tournament and helped UCONN win 11 straight tournament games (5 Big East, 6 NCAA) on their way to a third National Championship. He is a 6'1" point guard and will be very fun to watch in the NBA.

8:29: The Milwaukee Bucks select Jimmer Fredette with the 10th pick in the draft for the Sacramento Kings. Fredette is a native of Glens Falls, New York and takes over for Hacksaw Jim Duggan as the most famous Glens Falls native. 

8:35: The Golden State Warriors select Klay Thompson from Washington State. His dad was the #1 overall pick in the 1978 draft. I read an article about it in USA Today. Here is a link to that article

8:40: The NBA Draft has a really nice flow to it and the 5:00 minute limit between picks is a big reason why. Do they really need more time than that during the NFL Draft?

8:41: The Utah Jazz make their second pick of the night. Alec Burks from the University of Colorado is the second player drafted from the Big 12. He is already the third or fourth player that has been described on the ESPN broadcast as lightly recruited. Seems like a great night for the Jazz. They get a center in Kanter and a guard in Burks. I don't know if these two guys will end up being Malone and Stockton, but if I were a fan of the Jazz, I would be excited. If I were a fan of jazz I might want to listen to this:

8:47: The Suns make it back to back Big 12 players, by taking Markieff Morris with the 13th pick. He has a twin brother named Marcus that should be picked any time now. Here is a short article about the two brothers. Is there any chance that the Suns can find a way to select Marcus? These guys have been inseparable for the first 21 years of their lives. 

8:51: Marcus says that if he is separated from his brother he will send him some flowers and fruit. Marcus was very emotional when his brother was picked and I immediately want to cheer for both of them. My brothers are very important to me and when we are not together, I know I wish we were.

8:55: The Houston Rockets close the lottery by selecting my boy Marcus Norris. They were born seven minutes apart and drafted five minutes apart, and I had that written down before Stuart Scott said it. He is also the third straight player and fourth overall  from the Big 12 to be selected. Here is a picture of the twins followed by a picture of my brothers and I. 

Brothers Drafted in the 2011 Lottery
I won the lottery having these studs as brothers.
9:00: I am having fun. The Indiana Pacers are the first playoff team to make a pick outside of the lottery and select Kawhi Leonard from San Diego State University. That ends the streak of Big 12 basketball players selected. His first name sounds like a Hawaiian Island. 

9:03: Television is making a big deal about the size of Kawhi's hands. Interesting interview, Leonard is a family man who says he picked San Diego St. so his sister and mother could come to all of his home games. His mom is going to move with him to Indianapolis. There are lots of interesting stories emerging out of the draft. 

9:06: Sources on twitter say that the Spurs may have a deal in place to acquire Leonard from the Pacers. Maybe Mom will be moving to San Antonio instead of Indianapolis. 

9:07: The Philadelphia Sixers select Nikola Vucevic from USC. 

9:08: The New York Knicks are on the clock. The rumored trade is that the Spurs will trade George Hill to the Pacers for Kawhi Leonard. The ESPN broadcast hasn't said a word about it just yet. 

9:10: Spike Lee is in the building anxiously waiting for the Knicks to make a pick. Shockingly, the Knicks haven't won a playoff series since 2000. 

9:12: With the 17th pick in the NBA Draft the New York Knicks select the first player that isn't at the draft. Iman Shumpert from Georgia Tech doesn't seem to go over well with the Knicks fans that were able to make it to the draft. @TheBigLead a huge Knicks fan and said on twitter he wanted Faried or Singleton. He had this reaction after the pick. "no. Done tweeting for the night."

9:18: The Wizards make their second pick of the night and take the guy that most Knicks fans wanted, Chris Singleton from Florida St. He is the second player in a row to be selected from the ACC. 

9:20: The green room is empty. 

9:23: The Bobcats select Tobias Harris from the University of Tennessee. He is in the building but wasn't invited to the green room. What is that about? He makes his way to the stage and shakes hands with Mr. Stern. If he was there, why not invite him into the green room? Anyway, the Bobcats made that pick for the Milwaukee Bucks to complete the 3-team trade that we have been tracking all night. 

9:26: Ric Bucher from ESPN the Magazine announces the Hill for Leonard trade that many on twitter had about twenty minutes ago. I just shot a text to Lee Jenkins and we had this exchange:

SportsCasters: Any thoughts on Kawhi Leonard from SDST?

Lee Jenkins: I am not sure why he slipped. He is a rugged defender. He doesn't have a jumper but is the kind of physical presence a lot of teams needed.

9:29: The Timberwolves make their second pick of the night and go with Donatas Motiejunas a forward from Lithuania. He is the second player from Lithuania to be taken in the first round tonight.
9:34: I booked the first guest for Episode 27 and am excited to announce that Jonah Keri will make his second appearance on the podcast. I also think we will talk to the main man at to continue 32Teams/32Blogs. What do you think of the logo?

9:37: Back to the draft. The Portland Trailblazers select Nolan Smith from Duke University. He is the second player selected from Duke tonight. Jay Bilas, a former Duke player himself, says that Nolan is a kid with high character and calls him a solid player and teammate. He is another player that has a father who played in the NBA.

9:39: The Denver Nuggets are on the clock. I mentioned Lee Jenkins earlier and he had a fantastic article about the Nuggets in Sports Illustrated shortly after the Carmelo Anthony trade. Here is a link to the article. Andy Katz says that Denver is talking to Portland about a trade that would involve Raymond Felton and Andre Miller.

9:43: With the 22nd pick in the 2011 NBA Draft the Denver Nuggets select Kenneth Faried from Morehead State. He is a New Jersey native and is another guy in the crowd that wasn't welcome in the green room.

9:45: I noticed a few tweets criticizing the Portland pick of Nolan Smith. Dan Wolken says, "Its funny how Portland now drafts SOLELY on character now. Can't see any other reason for taking Nolan there."

9:48: @WojYahooNBA is reporting on Twitter that the Houston Rockets and Minnesota Timberwolves have made a trade. Woj says that Niagara Falls, NY native Johnny Flynn and Montiejunas are headed to Houston for Brad Miller, the 23rd pick, and a future 1st rounder.

9:50: The Houston Rockets select Nikola Mirotic from Montenegro with the 23rd pick in the draft. If @WojYahooNBA is correct he will be going to Minnesota. ESPN is reporting that he won't be in the NBA for 4 years because of a large buy out. He will be between 24-25 at that point.

9:53: Ric Bucher is now reporting the same trade that @WojYahooNBA reported on Twitter.

9:55: The Oklahoma City Thunder select Reggie Jackson from Boston College. Reggie had a fantastic baseball career and seems a little old for the NBA. That was awesome when he hit those three home runs in the World Series.

9:59: Off topic: I can't stand the fact that Major League Baseball doesn't allow their footage to be on YouTube. It seems so petty to me. I wanted to post a video of Reggie Jackson's three home runs and I couldn't find anything on You Tube. Annoying. Way to ruin Mr Jackson's draft night Bud.

10:00: The Boston Celtics select MarShon Brooks from Providence College. Brooks had to be easy for the Celtics to track playing a hop skip and a jump away in Providence. He is also in the building but not welcome in the green room, and that is getting on my nerves. Why couldn't these kids enjoy a Pepsi in the green room?

10:05: The NBA Champions select Jordan Hamilton from the University of Texas. Well, I hate Texas. Again, the Mavs scouts must have enjoyed scouting Hamilton just down the road in Austin.

10:06: TRADE. MarShon Brooks has already been traded. He will go to New Jersey for the 27th pick and a future second round pick.

10:07: The Nets are on the clock now with that 27th pick that seems to be headed to Boston.

10:08: Dan Wolken says that Jordan Hamilton is going to Denver. Did Dallas make a trade? ESPN has been a step behind twitter with trades all night. I haven't been impressed by that aspect of the draft coverage.

10:10: The Nets select JaJuan Johnson the Big 10 player of the year from Purdue University. If the rumors are true, he will go to Boston with a future 2nd Round Pick and the Nets will get MarShon Brooks. Speaking of Purdue, this guy went to Purdue...

10:14: The Bulls are on the clock, but we have another trade. The Bulls get the rights to Nikola Mitotic (the 23rd pick in tonight's draft) and the Timberwolves get this pick (28th overall) and the 43rd overall pick. The Timberwolves are very active tonight.

10:15: Dan Wolken has confirmed to me on Twitter that the Mavericks have traded Jordan Hamilton to Denver. I am trying to get details on this trade that ESPN has failed to mention to their viewers.

10:17: The Bulls select point guard Norris Cole from Cleveland State for the Timberwolves.  Don't the Timberwolves have Ricky Rubio? I know they traded Johnny Flynn tonight, but it still seems like PG is not a position of need. However, Minnesota has been active tonight and they could be working on another trade. Norris Cole was actually named after the Norris Trophy given annually to the NHL's most outstanding defenseman (I can't seem to confirm that).

10:21: This is getting crazy, but @IraHeatBeat is reporting that the Miami Heat have traded for Norris Cole.

10:22: The Spurs select another Canadian that played college hoops at Texas. GAG. Cory Joseph was not a player many thought would go in the first round, but the Spurs don't make many mistakes. That makes three Texas players in the first round or one more than Duke.

10:24: The Bulls are on the clock. David Stern gets a loud random boo. He says to the crowd, "Thank you for that." He receives another long boo. Hahaha, then he announces that Adam Silver will be conducting round two and everyone cheers. Anyway, Jimmy Butler from Marquette is the last player selected in the first round. He has a Michael Oher type story and Chad Ford wrote this piece about it.

10:28: That is it for the first round and the live portion of this blog. However, before I sign off, I want to find out what happened with the Mavericks and their pick of Jordan Hamilton.

10:30: This is what I found out about the Dallas trade according to SportsDayDFW powered by the Daily Morning News. 
The Mavericks will be trading their 26 and 57 picks to Portland for two players, one of whom will be Rudy Fernandez.
While the Mavericks could not say anything about the deal because it won’t be completed until they draft the 57 pick for the Portland Trail Blazers, Jordan Hamilton at No. 26 will be going to the Blazers.
10:33: I have to mention that Adam Silver gets a huge cheer as he comes out to announce the Miami Heat's selection of Bojan Bogdanovic.

12:38: Here is the offfical information of the Jordan Hamilton trade. It was a three team trade between the Mavericks, Trail Blazers, and Nuggets.

Portland receives: 

Raymond Felton, No. 26 pick (Jordan Hamilton), No. 57 pick (Tanguy Ngombo)

Denver receives: 

Andre Miller, future second-round pick

Dallas receives: 

Rudy Fernandez, 2007 No. 30 pick (Petteri Koponen)

12:43: Three other trades to report:

New York receives: No. 45 pick (Josh Harrellson)
New Orleans receives: Cash considerations

Cleveland receives: Two future second-round picks
Orlando receives: No. 32 pick (Justin Harper)

Cleveland receives: Two future second-round picks
Orlando receives: No. 32 pick (Justin Harper)

For a complete list of trades during the 2011 NBA Draft click here.

12:45: Just a few final thoughts:
  • Kyle Singler from Duke was drafted 33rd by the Pistons. Many draft analysts had him as a sure first round pick if he had left school after his junior season. I hate when it doesn't work out for a kid who decides to stay at school.
  • Tyler Honeycutt and Malcolm Lee both left UCLA early to be first round picks and it didn't work out for either of them. Honeycutt was picked 35th by the Kings and Lee was picked 43rd by the Bulls.
  • Marques Colston will be thrilled to find out that Charles Jenkins a guard from his alma mater Hofstra was drafted by Golden State with the 44th pick. I am certain Jenkins didn't play football at Hofstra because they don't have a team any more. 
  • ESPN had a terrible night hosting this thing. First, there were problems with microphones cutting out all night. The more I thought about it, I guess they could have been going quiet to keep a naughty word yelled in the crowd from making it to television. If that's the case, it's weak. I hope they just had some bad wires or the guy that sabotaged Forest Gump's thoughts on Vietnam was back stage. 
  • ESPN got killed by Twitter tonight when it comes to reporting on trades that were made during the draft. Twitter sometimes had trades a full thirty minutes before it was mentioned on ESPN. It made the draft somewhat confusing for a tech savvy viewer. Twitter is talking about trades, Stuart Scott is talking about boo-yah, and the on site reporters assigned to the draft by ESPN didn't get enough air time. 
That's it for my first ever NBA Draft Live Blog. It was a very good time. I will be back in some way shape or form to cover the NHL Draft tomorrow night.

Anyone want to say goodnight? Thank you Brady.

1 comment:

  1. Kyrie and Derrick are good players, but I don't think they would be drafted in the top 5 of most drafts. Maybe the foreign players will surprise us 5 years from now. There will be a lot of hole-filling in this draft, no franchise-changing players.