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NBA draft pick-by-pick analysis

2010 NBA Draft Class (Getty Images)
Which of these prospects will pan out in the NBA?
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Who made smart picks? Bad ones? How will each player fit in with his new team? We analyze every move right here.

1. Washington Wizards: John Wall, 6-4, 195, PG, Fr., Kentucky

Wall has been the consensus No. 1 pick for a while now. Now it's official. The question for the Wizards now is what to do with the rest of their roster to accommodate the 19-year-old point guard. As unselfish as Wall is, some believe that playing alongside troublesome guard Gilbert Arenas could hinder his play. This team will be built around Wall for sure, but moving Arenas would probably only accelerate that process. Either way, John Wall is a future star in the NBA no matter who his teammates are. His speed and quickness will immediately make the Wizards one of the most exciting teams in the NBA. This is a franchise-changing pick for the Washington Wizards. ( See him in action)

2. Philadelphia 76ers : Evan Turner, 6-7, 215, SG/SF, Jr., Ohio State

Adding the multi-talented Turner to a backcourt that includes young Jrue Holiday at point should set the Sixers in the backcourt for years to come. Turner is a jack-of-all-trades type of guard, much like Portland's Brandon Roy. He won't wow you with highlight-reel dunks, but he's good (or very good) at everything else. Does the Turner selection signal the end of the Andre Iguodala era in Philadelphia? ( See him in action)

3. New Jersey Nets : Derrick Favors, 6-10, 245, PF/C, Fr., Georgia Tech

Favors is an elite athlete and should be effective on both ends of an NBA court. The Nets are coming off an embarrassing 12-win season, so Favors won't have any trouble finding minutes on the floor. Offensively, he is a little bit raw and will probably score the bulk of his points on put-backs and dunks. But, he is only 18 so his offense will most certainly improve. Defensively, he should help the Nets immediately with his length and athletic ability. Teamed with Brook Lopez, New Jersey has an impressive young frontcourt for the future. ( See him in action)

4. Minnesota Timberwolves : Wesley Johnson, 6-7, 205, SF, Jr., Syracuse

Minnesota won 15 games last year, so it's in no position to be drafting players on need. Instead, the Wolves took the best player available in Johnson, who will step in and get major minutes right away. Johnson is athletic and extremely long for a small forward (7-foot wingspan). He could develop into an elite defender, guarding multiple positions. Offensively, he is a future 15-18 ppg player because he can shoot the three and also is nifty getting to the hoop. ( See him in action)

5. Sacramento Kings : DeMarcus Cousins, 6-11, 290, C, Fr., Kentucky

POLL

  • Who will be the 2011 rookie of the year?
    • Blake Griffin
    • Evan Turner
    • John Wall
    • Someone else

Kings GM Geoff Petrie elected to use his high lottery selection to take the best John Calipari-coached talent available, yet again. It seemed to work out last season, with Tyreke Evans taking home the Rookie of the Year trophy. Cousins has that type of talent and could eventually develop into a perennial All-Star, thanks primarily to his high-percentage shooting and rebounding numbers. Cousins, showing a sense of style, came color-coded to the Kings. ( See him in action)

6. Golden State Warriors: Ekpe Udoh, 6-10, 235, PF/C, Jr., Baylor

The Warriors went with an older (23) potential pick. Udoh will attempt to protect the rim for the Warriors. He blocked 3.7 shots per game last year for Baylor. He is also an excellent rebounder on both ends of the court. Offensively, he is a work in progress, but improving. Only two years ago, he was averaging as little as 6 points a game for Michigan. He had his average up to almost 14 ppg this past season, and it will only keep improving as he matures. The Warriors may ultimately wish they had taken Greg Monroe here. (See him in action)

7. Detroit Pistons: Greg Monroe, 6-11, 245, PF, Soph., Georgetown

Despite rumors of bad workouts, Monroe still goes fairly high. He's got the kind of big-guy intangibles that aren't teachable. The concern with Monroe is if he will put in the work and show up consistently. At times he was dominant and other times didn't assert himself the way a star should. At times Georgetown could beat anybody with Monroe carrying them on his back, and then there'd be a game like the first-round loss to Ohio. Still, this is the best pick the Pistons could have made at this point. (See him in action)

8. Los Angeles Clippers: Al-Farouq Aminu, 6-8, 215, F, Soph., Wake Forest

The Clippers had lots of money come off the books at the end of the season, so depending on who re-signs, there could be plenty of minutes for Aminu next season. The sky is the limit for Aminu. He is a top-notch athlete with great length and size. Should be able to play both the wing and in the post at times in the NBA because he can really rebound the basketball. His jumper is shaky at times and needs improvement, but the Clippers could have a future star with this pick. (See him in action)

9. Utah Jazz (from New York Knicks) Gordon Hayward, 6-8, 210, F, Soph., Butler

Hayward is going to be beloved in Utah. He has the versatility and size to play both the 2 and the 3 in the pros and the Jazz aren't particularly strong at either position (though he's better suited as an NBA SG). He'll add offensive variety to Sloan's rotation right away and is a solid defender. Kyle Korver step aside -- there's a new darling in Utah. (See him in action)

10. Indiana Pacers: Paul George, 6-9, 215, F, Soph., Fresno State

The Pacers have a huge hole at point guard, so obviously they take a wing player that duplicates what their franchise player (Danny Granger) already does. This could signify a trade. On the bright side, George has serious potential with a Tracy McGrady-like skill set at his size (6-8, 215). He's a late-bloomer with plenty of room to improve. It'll be bad news, however, if we see George blow out a candle on a cupcake in the Slam Dunk Contest. But Indiana needed to swing for the fences with this pick, and George has the most upside at this point of the draft. (See him in action)

11. New Orleans Hornets: Cole Aldrich, 6-11, 235, C, Jr., Kansas

Aldrich was thought to be a top-5 pick coming into the college basketball season. This is still a very good selection for the Hornets. His game mimics Hornets center Emeka Okafor a little bit in terms of strengths (shot blocking, rebounding) and weaknesses (raw offensively), so it would make sense if this pick got moved to the Oklahoma City Thunder as rumored. (See him in action)

12. Memphis Grizzlies: Xavier Henry, 6-6, 210, SG, Fr., Kansas

The Grizzlies could use more scoring options and guard depth, and Henry fills both needs. If the team is unable to sign Rudy Gay, Henry will replace some of his offense with his combination of shooting and athleticism. He must become more consistent, but if he puts it all together we'll look back at this pick as a steal. (See him in action)

13. Toronto Raptors: Ed Davis, 6-10, 225, PF, Soph., North Carolina

The Raptors obviously believe that Chris Bosh is hitting the road, so they're shoring up that power forward spot with the 6-foot-10 Davis. He was a projected top-five pick before this season started, but after a dismal season at UNC, his stock slipped. He has no real post moves to speak of, but he can grab some boards and play some defense (unlike frontcourt mates Hedo Turkoglu and Andrea Bargnani). A real boom-or-bust pick, but it'll take 2-3 years to judge Davis' true value. (See him in action)

14. Houston Rockets: Patrick Patterson, 6-9, 240, PF, Jr., Kentucky

Patterson really expanded his game last year at Kentucky. His first two years he was strictly a post player. Last season he was knocking down threes with regularity. His biggest strength is his physical nature. Patterson has had an NBA body for years now. With his versatility, and the Rockets' constant injury problems, he should find minutes right away and instantly provide them with some youth and energy. (See him in action)

15. Milwaukee Bucks (from Chicago Bulls): Larry Sanders, 6-11, 220, F, Jr., VCU

The first pick outside of the lottery adds some much-needed depth to the Bucks' front line. Sanders does a little bit of everything right, but lacks a single elite skill. His ceiling isn't particularly high, but he is likely to be a solid pro for years to come. He's the type of player who will continue to help a rising young team with consistency. Maybe he won't put the fear in "Fear the Deer" but he won't frighten his own fans either. (See him in action)

16. Minnesota Timberwolves (from Charlotte Bobcats): Luke Babbitt, 6-9, 220, F, Soph., Nevada

This pick has been shopped like crazy leading up to the draft, and sources say the Wolves are shipping Babbitt to Portland. He's a deceptively strong athlete (37-inch vert) with a terrific shooting stroke with NBA range and a high release point. He has a defined NBA position (SF) and should contribute from Day 1. He'll struggle defensively, but most rookies do. He would've been a nice fit in Minnesota had it kept the pick. Look for him to end up as a rich man's version of Mike Dunleavy. (See him in action)

17. Chicago Bulls (from Milwaukee Bucks): Kevin Seraphin, 6-10, 255, PF, 20, France

Surprising selection here which was probably made looking at the big picture for the Bulls. All the major franchises in this year's free agency class are trying to clear as much cap space as possible. By drafting a foreign player like Seraphin, the Bulls can leave him overseas for a year or two, and not take on any more cap space, especially for a guy who likely will not make it into the rotation next year anyway. All that being said, Seraphin has an excellent frame for the NBA and is very explosive offensively. But, he is probably two years away from being ready.

18. Oklahoma City Thunder (from Miami Heat): Eric Bledsoe, 6-1, 190, PG, Fr., Kentucky

Bledsoe goes from OKC to the Clippers via trade. That's got to be exciting for his lifestyle, depressing for the hoops reality. Bledsoe has serious upside, but he's essentially taken a year off from playing PG (thanks to John Wall), so it's hard to read him. He could turn out to be Russell Westbrook-type of quickly developing project if everything goes well. (See him in action)

19. Boston Celtics: Avery Bradley, 6-3, 180, G, Fr., Texas

The Eastern Conference champs are in a serious state of flux. The Celts are in desperate need of an infusion of youth, which Bradley will bring. He's the best perimeter defender in the draft, but a bit of a tweener (not a real point guard, not tall enough to play full-time 2-guard) and a lousy outside shooter. Much like teammate Rajon Rondo, he struggles at the free-throw line far too much for a guard. Still, Bradley is a terrific athlete and will earn minutes right away as a lockdown defender. A Rondo-Bradley backcourt immediately becomes the NBA's best perimeter defensive tandem. (See him in action)

20. San Antonio Spurs: James Anderson, 6-6, 210, SG, Jr., Oklahoma State

Anderson is one of the better shooters in this draft. He falls to the Spurs, who are in need of youth and energy at the wing. Anderson has an NBA body already and good size for his position. He proved that he could score at a high and efficient pace at the college level. If injuries continue for Ginobili and Parker next year, Anderson could find himself playing a good amount of minutes. (See him in action)

21. Oklahoma City Thunder: Craig Brackins, 6-10, 230, PF, Jr., Iowa State

Brackins' stock fell dramatically over the past year, but in the end it climbed back up. There's a reason. He can face the basket and score, especially impressive for a guy of his size. He's not a low-post bruiser, instead a finesse guy that spreads the floor, even back beyond the arc. However, in order to be the impact player scouts once thought he could be, he needs to commit to the defensive end of the floor, where he's been very lax at times. (See him in action)

22. Portland Trail Blazers: Elliot Williams, 6-4, 180, G, Soph., Memphis

After fleecing David Kahn, Portland GM Kevin Pritchard (at least for the next couple hours) takes Williams, who shined after transferring from Duke. He's a bit short (6-foot-4) for the 2-guard spot, but he's got that Jay Bilas-approved length and he's quite versatile. Think of Williams as a pre-injury Larry Hughes (back when he was useful and not a salary-cap albatross).The real story here is Pritchard conducting this draft as a lame-duck GM. He's been one of the league's best GMs and kept his team playoff-bound despite the injury woes Portland faced. Pritchard will be hired by another team as soon as the firing becomes official. Portland will struggle mightily to replace him. (See him in action)

23. Minnesota Timberwolves (from Utah): Trevor Booker, 6-7, 236, PF, Sr., Clemson

Booker is a work-horse as physical as anyone in the draft, but this is the biggest reach of the draft so far. He got it done at the college level in the paint at about 6-7 (maybe). He will be really undersized in the NBA and he doesn't have the skill set to play small forward. It looks like this pick will be moved to Washington, which lacks depth in the post.

24. Atlanta Hawks: Damion James, 6-8, 225, F, Sr., Texas

James seems could step in and get immediate minutes in New Jersey. If new coach Avery Johnson decides to push the pace, he could really excel. An up-tempo style fits his combination of athleticism and fast-break finishing. However, his half-court skills lack polish. He could unfortunately struggle as a tweener between the 3 and 4. Still, the senior seems like a decent safe pick here. (See him in action)

25. Memphis Grizzlies (from Denver Nuggets): Dominique Jones, 6-4, 210, SG, Jr., South Florida

Jones is headed to Dallas. He's one of the best pure scorers in the draft (21 ppg) and he can get his points from all over the floor. He's one of those herky-jerky guys who muscles his way to the bucket and scores in a variety of ways. He'll contribute immediately as a spark off the bench for the Mavs (the same sort of role Marcus Thornton played for New Orleans last season). (See him in action)

26. Oklahoma City Thunder (from Phoenix Suns): Quincy Pondexter, 6-7, 215, SF, Sr., Washington

Pondexter is an experienced wing player who has an NBA body. It looks like this pick will be dealt to the Hornets, which makes sense after New Orleans dealt away a rotation player in Mo Peterson and has age issues on the wing. Pondexter can really rebound for his size.

27. New Jersey Nets (from Dallas Mavericks): Jordan Crawford, 6-4, 200, SG, Soph., Xavier

Crawford just seems like a Hawks player. He fits their mold perfectly. Actually, it's really creepy how similar he is to current Hawk Jamal Crawford. His determination to score is on par with anyone in the draft. As he showed in the NCAA tournament, he is willing to shoot from anywhere mainly because he can make it. He certainly has the potential to be the steal of the draft. And what other draft prospects have thrown down on LeBron already? That's got to count for something. (See him in action)

28. Memphis Grizzlies (from Los Angeles Lakers): Greivis Vasquez, 6-6, 211, PG-SG, Sr., Maryland

The Grizzles have been busy wheeling and dealing. At 28, they take Vasquez to a huge roar from the crowd. These folks loves them some Greivis. He was one of college basketball's best all-around players and nobody was happier to be drafted. He's a very tall point guard and he's a hard-nosed kid who plays his heart out every possession. He lacks the lateral quickness of other NBA guards and he's not exactly a lights-out shooter, but he's a solid scorer with a high basketball IQ. Best-case scenario, he'll be a Brandon Roy type. Worst case, he'll be Reece Gaines.

29. Orlando Magic: Daniel Orton, 6-9, 270, PF, Fr., Kentucky

Orlando's roster won't have any significant changes from this year to the next, barring a big-time trade, so this pick was made mostly on potential. There won't be many minutes for Orton next year, playing behind Dwight Howard and Marcin Gortat. The Magic won't expect him to play either. If he can cut down on his body fat and develop a few post moves under Patrick Ewing's tutelage, this pick could pay off in a few years. (See him in action)

30. Washington Wizards (from Cleveland Cavaliers): Lazar Hayward, 6-6, 226, SF, Sr., Marquette

Lazar Hayward is a grinder who should stick around for a while. Sporting a crazy wingspan (7-1), Hayward played mainly PF at Marquette but has the skills to play the 3 in the pros. He can knock down the open jumper and is a great free throw shooter. His athleticism won't blow anyone away, but he could turn into a very solid contributor off the bench in the Jared Dudley mold.

Tagged: Hawks, Warriors, Rockets, Clippers, Bucks, Nets, Magic, Spurs, Grizzlies, Joe Johnson, Tim Duncan, Wizards, Raptors, Thunder, Hornets, 76ers, Jamal Crawford, Trail Blazers, Brandon Roy, Kings, Celtics, Pacers, Pelicans, Jazz

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