We continue our Mock Draft, with Round Nine.
Rules: 8-category rotisserie league, 12 teams, 10 rounds, picking best available player (not building teams).
The participants: Steve Alexander (Rotoworld), Jeff Andriesse, Tom Lorenzo and Greg Fox (Damn Lies).
DAMN LIES & STATISTICS MOCK DRAFT
97. Steve – Andre Miller
98. Jeff – Tyrus Thomas
99. Greg – Jason Terry
100. Tom – Greg Oden
101. Steve – Andris Biedrins
102. Jeff – Jose Calderon
103. Greg – Roy Hibbert
104. Tom – Boris Diaw
105. Steve – JaVale McGee
106. Jeff – Kevin Garnett
107. Greg – Emeka Okafor
108. Tom – Leandro Barbosa
NINTH ROUND ANALYSIS
Steve Alexander: In the 9th I got Andre Miller, who despite a lack of threes and a solid shot of blandness, is a quality No. 1 point guard, and Steve Blake is finally out of the way in Portland. Andris Biedrins is, by all reports, still alive and still has the potential to be a starting fantasy center (just watch out for those free throw bricks) and JaVale McGee is with Team USA earning some much-needed experience. I’ve always had a thing for McGee and he looks like the clear-cut starting center for the Wiz this year, as Hilton Armstrong is fantasy garbage. Love the upside of Ty Thomas, the value of Jose Calderon, the youth (and Bill Walton tutoring) of Roy Hibbert, the stealth fantasy play of Boris Diaw, while Jason Terry, Greg Oden, Kevin Garnett, Emeka Okafor and Leandro Barbosa all look like quality ways to spend a 9th-rounder this year. My only question is, where are Elton Brand and Vince Carter?
Jeff Andriesse: A round of big teases, with Tyrus Thomas leading the way. I figure he’ll be better in the second year in Larry Brown’s system, and with Tyson Chandler gone more minutes will come his way. It is hard to understate just how frustrating he is to own, though. Greg Oden was finally breaking through before getting hurt yet again. I wouldn’t draft him or text-message him. Andris Biedrins was what I believed to be a solid fifth-round pick last year; what a disaster that turned out to be. And if Nellie wants to go small he now has David Lee to plug in at center. Biedrins has a lot to prove this year to fantasy owners. Hey, is that Jose Calderon in the ninth? When I took him I winced at how far he’s fallen. He was an early second-round pick as recently as a year ago, but maybe now he’ll provide some value this late. He should shoot more but he’s going to have a hard time finding consistency with DeMar DeRozan, Amir Johnson and Sonny Weems running out there with him. I grabbed Kevin Garnett out of pity in this round, but if he provides a 15 and 8 with good peripherals, and can somehow play 70+ games, he won’t hurt you. The more I think about it, the more I like JaVale McGee heading into this season.
Greg Fox: The pickins are starting to get slim in this round as we all took some chances on guys who have the potential to break out or on some who are coming off of awful years. Case in point: My selection of Emeka Okafor at No. 107. The clear starter at center in New Orleans and with a healthy Paul running the show, there is no reason why he can’t revert to his 14-point, 10-rebound, 2-block ways. Okafor is way too young to be trending downward at such an alarming rate. Better things have to be in store this year. I took Roy Hibbert at No. 103 and I think he’ll pay dividends. I had a borderline man-crush on him heading in to last season, and although he didn’t prove me a genius, he did enjoy some success. Given sporadic minutes he exhibited that he can be an effective scorer and shot-blocker. What was tough to figure was his lack of rebounding (5.7 rpg). That’s got to improve and it will. I also snared the consistent Jason Terry at No. 99. Terry turns 33 this year and is coming off of a shaky season, but he can still knock down the three with the best of ’em. Jeff gave the disappointing Tyrus Thomas a try at 98 in the hopes that he will finally live up to his potential as a multi-category beast. Every now and then he’ll give you one of those 6-block, 4-steal nights that leave his owners in lust. Tom, who drafted Marcus Camby three rounds previous, grabbed his backup Oden at No. 100 and will pray that his hooves remain intact. I like the chance Tom is taking with Barbosa at the end of this round. He was becoming a forgotten man in Phoenix and will hopefully resurrect his career in a desperate but great situation in Toronto.
Tom Lorenzo: It seems like this might be the round with the most question marks in it. Of course you have to start with Tyrus Thomas (who I love, by the way) and wonder whether or not this will be the season he figures it out. Then you have Greg Oden, who I took at No. 100. Will he even play 100 more games over the remainder of his career? What about Andris Biedrins? Is he alive? Jose Calderon: where were you last year? Really? I’d love to know. Boris Diaw: are you really that bored out there or is that your “excited” face? I’d hate to see what you’re like at the DMV if that’s your “excited” face. JaVale Mcgee: according to Team USA you are one of the top 15 players they had available. Yet, we chose 104 players ahead of you. Kevin Garnett: as Jeff would say, how the mighty have fallen. Emeka Okafor: are you going to play this season or are you becoming the 2010 version of Theo Ratliff’s contract? Leandro Barbosa: remember when you were supposed to average 1.5 steals and 1.5 threes last season? How about doing that this season. Thanks!