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MONROE: Lottery teams' draft needs

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Mike Monroe

 
   
 
CAVALIERS — A lot depends on whether or not they still believe is a point guard and ¿ foot is reliable enough for the long haul. If so, then they need a reliable small forward and also need to improve their power forward position. If they believe Wagner needs to slide over to shooting guard, they had better try to find a point. NUGGETS — Believe it or not, they¿re actually in pretty decent shape up front with and . That¿s counting on Camby to stay healthy, of course, which is pretty iffy. No team, though, is worse in the back court. They need talent at both guard positions, especially at the point. They¿ve got money to spend on free agents, so what they get in the draft will help determine whom they go after. RAPTORS — They¿ve got only one position they don¿t need to fill, and that¿s big guard, where only needs to stay healthy to be one of the league¿s best. If they can find a reliable starting center can play power forward, where he belongs, so that is probably their No. 1 priority. HEAT — With and they don¿t need anymore 2-3 swing men, that¿s for sure. But they definitely have needs at every other position. More than anything, however, they need a point guard. In a draft that is supposed to be full of good ones it will be a surprise if they don¿t take one. CLIPPERS — If you presume, as the whole world does, that is long gone then they had better find another center. . Projecting that is going to want out when he can get free makes finding another ¿big¿ even more vital. They¿re going to lose a point guard, too, but they¿ve got enough of them stockpiled they¿re probably OK there. GRIZZLIES — More luck than any of the teams in the lottery, because if they don¿t get the very first pick they have to give their spot to the . We¿ve included them here because they¿re still in the running for LeBron James and they get the ¿ pick. After trading last season¿s rookies you¿d have to say they need another power forward and a big guard. BULLS — Even with , and Eddy Curry, they don¿t have a legitimate power forward, so they need to find one. It might be a good idea to get a true small forward, too, so could spend more time playing big guard or even the point. HAWKS — They may have to convey this pick to the , who badly need a real center. But if Atlanta gets to keep this pick they had better use it to find a true point guard — isn¿t going to develop height or speed in the off-season — so can play big guard. KNICKS — Even in reurns from his most recent surgery and plays all 82 games next season, they still need help in the post. is not a true center, so if they can get one they had better do it. They¿re set at big guard and small forward, but their second most pressing need is at the point. WIZARDS — Their No. 1 need right now is for a clue from management. If they dump Doug Collins where does play? If a new coach believes he¿s not a point guard they desperately need one. Obviously, they need help up front, especially if they admit was a terrible mistake. WARRIORS — A young team headed in the right direction mostly needs to make sure it doesn¿t need a new guard to replace Gilbert Arenas and/or . Both are free agents. What they do on draft night will be a clear indication of whether or not they believe they can re-sign them. SONICS — They¿re set at small forward (Rashard Lewis) and big guard (Ray Allen) for the long term but they can use help at every other position. Mostly they need a true point guard so can play his swing man role. and will be around for a while, but that doesn¿t mean they should pass on the chance to get another center. ROCKETS — This pick goes to the , so they very much need to not get the No. 1 pick two years in a row. Mike Monroe can be reached at his e-mail address, mmonroe@foxsports.com.
Tagged: Hawks, Bulls, Cavaliers, Nuggets, Warriors, Clippers, Heat, Knicks, Thunder, Wizards, Raptors, Jason Terry, Tyson Chandler, Calvin Booth, Antonio McDyess, Larry Hughes, Jalen Rose, Michael Olowokandi, Elton Brand, Eddie Jones, Kurt Thomas, Kwame Brown, Vince Carter, Nene Hilario, Earl Boykins, Caron Butler, Zydrunas Ilgauskas

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