Most years, when it comes to the NBA Draft, there always seems to be that one player that stands out among the rest as the best (possibly) in the draft class and is deserving of being drafted number one overall. In other years, there are two or three players that are deserving to go first, but that cannot happen of course, so one of those players gets to enjoy the spotlight while the other player(s) have to settle for being picked second and third overall. Those players that are passed over may get the last laugh, as seen in the 2013 NBA Draft.
With the first pick in the 2013 Draft, the Cavaliers took the freshman big man, Anthony Bennett out of UNLV, hoping he could be the key piece to the puzzle that could get them back to the playoffs and out of the cellar, where they had been since LeBron James bolted for Miami to join forces with Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh. After just three years, it can be said with absolute certainty that the Cavaliers were totally wrong with that pick because Bennett lasted just one season with the Cavs before being shipped to Minnesota in the trade that brought Kevin Love to Cleveland. Bennett is yet to find a home in the NBA and is currently trying to win a spot with the Brooklyn Nets.
That is how the draft goes sometimes though. Sometimes you win and sometimes you lose. Luckily for the Cavaliers, this is their chance at a redo for their mistake. After doing research and looking at how the players drafted in 2013 have turned out, the draft has been redone and the teams that made “bone-headed” picks get to re-pick. With that, the Cavaliers are on the clock.
30 Cleveland Cavaliers - Victor Oladipo (Indiana)
Original Pick: Anthony Bennett (UNLV)
After doing research and looking at how the draftees from 2013 have done in the three years in the league, Victor Oladipo is the no-brainer first pick here. The Cavaliers took their chances with Bennett the first time around, but it did not pan out the way they thought it would, so this time, they go with the surefire pick and take Oladipo.
29 Orlando Magic - Michael Carter-Williams (Syracuse)
Original Pick: Victor Oladipo (Indiana)
This is where this draft gets tricky. After Oladipo, there is a sharp drop off in production out of the draftees and every team is picking based on best fit. Starting at second overall, the Magic take the point guard they been looking for and, based on his play over the past three years, who is the best in the draft, and that is Michael Carter-Williams.
Originally drafted 11th by the Sixers, Carter-Williams balled out during his rookie year and it was a two-man race for the Rookie of the Year trophy between him and Oladipo, with Carter-Williams eventually bringing home the trophy.
28 Washington Wizards - Otto Porter (Georgetown)
Original Pick: Otto Porter (Georgetown)
After the two frontrunners for the 2013 Rookie of the Year award go one-two in the draft, where do the Wizards turn? They stick with their original pick and take Otto Porter out of Georgetown.
He may not be the best player on the board, but after seeing how he has gotten better every year during his NBA career, that is reason enough for the Wizards to stick with him here at three. They used him as a role player who sparingly saw minutes during his first two years in the league, but, last season, the Wizards got what they thought they were getting when they drafted him.
27 Charlotte Hornets - C.J. McCollum (Lehigh)
Original Pick: Cody Zeller (Indiana)
At four, the Hornets originally took Cody Zeller from Indiana. He has been a decent role player for them, but with a chance to choose again, the Hornets want more. With Kemba Walker as their point guard, why not get him a solid running mate? C.J. McCollum out of mid-major Lehigh would be the guy that the Hornets are looking for.
He is not a seven footer like Zeller, but he is a player that can play both guard positions and score at will. He was originally drafted tenth by the Blazers and has teamed with Damian Lillard to form one of the most dynamic guard combos in the NBA today. This past season was his first full season in the NBA, after he fought through injuries during his first two years in the league, and McCollum showed what he can really do.
26 Phoenix - Steven Adams (Pittsburgh)
Original Pick: Alex Len (Maryland)
After watching Steven Adams play for the Thunder over the last three seasons, it is a no-brainer why the Suns, during the do over, take him at five and do not stick with their original pick of Alex Len out of Maryland.
Adams can bang with the best of them in the paint and can get put-backs whenever he is needed to do so. The problem with Len is that he is injury prone and cannot stay on the floor long enough to make an impact. Adams is tough and rugged, which can be said to come from him being born in New Zealand, as it seems that all New Zealander athletes are tough and rugged.
25 New Orleans - Giannis Antetokounmpo (Greece)
Original Pick: Nerlens Noel (Kentucky)
Envision Anthony Davis and “The Greek Freak” playing together in the paint for the Pelicans. Like what you see? The Pelicans originally took Nerlens Noel here, only to trade him to the Sixers, but since this is a do-over, the Pelicans are not doing that again and are taking someone who makes them more athletic and makes New Orleans the second “Lob City.”
24 Sacramento - Nerlens Noel (Kentucky)
Original Pick: Ben McLemore (Kansas)
The Kings are like the Oakland Raiders of the NBA when it comes to the draft. They always seem to draft a guy who just does not pan out. Very rarely do they draft somebody who turns into a star, with DeMarcus Cousins being the only obvious exception.
In this do-over, seeing that there really isn't any star power on the board, the Kings select Nerlens Noel out of Kentucky to fill the power forward position and team up with DeMarcus Cousins. They originally took Ben McLemore out of Kansas at this spot, but with the chance to put a player who is known for his defense and shot blocking ability with a force inside like Cousins, they had to change their pick.
23 Detroit - Trey Burke (Michigan)
Original Pick: Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (Georgia)
Going into the 2013 draft, Trey Burke was projected by many scouts to be the top point guard and was compared to Damian Lillard, based on his ability to make plays to help his team win games during his time at Michigan playing under Coach John Beilein.
He helped lead Michigan, with the help of Tim Hardaway Jr., Nik Stauskas, and Mitch McGary (all NBA players), to the National Championship game in 2013 before losing to Louisville. The Pistons always seem to be looking for a point guard and decide to take the Michigan kid here at number eight. Burke would fit in well with the Detroit style of play because he is a hard-nosed kid who, as we mentioned before, can make plays.
22 Minnesota - Robert Covington (Tennessee State)
Original Pick: Trey Burke (Michigan)
You are probably sitting there, saying “Robert Covington? Why so high?” Covington originally went undrafted in the 2013 draft and, after the last two years with the Sixers, it looks like a team should have taken a chance and drafted him.
In the do-over, the Timberwolves are that team. They originally drafted Trey Burke here and shipped him off to Utah for Shabazz Muhammad, who was drafted at fourteen. Since Burke was taken at eight by the Pistons, the Wolves cannot do that again and if you compare Covington’s numbers to Muhammad’s, you will see why Covington is picked here and why Muhammad remains on the board.
21 Portland - Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (Georgia)
Original Pick: C.J. McCollum (Lehigh)
When the draft comes around, you never hear about a kid coming out of the University of Georgia being projected to go in the first round. With Georgia being in the SEC, their players are usually overlooked by scouts due to the talent teams like Kentucky and Florida always have.
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope is the exception. During his career at Georgia, he averaged 15.8 points per game, helping the Bulldogs gain respect from Kentucky and Florida, as well as scouts. The Blazers sitting here at ten are looking for a player who can play “Robin” to Damian Lillard’s “Batman” and they like how Caldwell-Pope looks in black and red (Georgia’s uniform colors), so they decide to select him.
20 Philadelphia - Dennis Schroder (Germany)
Original Pick: Michael Carter-Williams (Syracuse)
Whenever there are trade rumors surrounding this guy, it always seems to be the Sixers who are team interested in picking him up. So, why not have them take him here?
Dennis Schroder was an unknown, like many international players, going into the draft and all we heard about him was how NBA ready he was and that he was a prototypical NBA point guard. He was originally picked 17th by the Hawks and, so far, he has sat behind Jeff Teague, who got most of the minutes at the point guard position. With Teague being traded to the Pacers this offseason, expect Schroder to take over at the point and expect his numbers to improve.
19 Oklahoma City - Cody Zeller (Indiana)
Original Pick: Steven Adams (Pittsburgh)
The Thunder at twelve are heartbroken that their original pick Steven Adams is not on the board this time around. They like his toughness because it fits in well with Serge Ibaka, Kevin Durant (who has now left), and Russell Westbrook, but they have to get over it.
They look at their board for another big man who can be physical and wreak havoc inside. That shrinks their choice down to two men, Cody Zeller and Rudy Gobert. Based on their numbers, which are similar, the Thunder decide to take Cody Zeller out of Indiana. Zeller was a standout at Indiana playing under Tom Crean and with two brothers, Luke and Tyler, who also play in the NBA. Cody seemed like a sure-fire NBA player. He was originally drafted by the Hornets fourth overall and has not panned out the way they had hoped, leading to Zeller getting garbage minutes during blowouts.
18 Dallas - Ben McLemore (Kansas)
Original Pick: Kelly Olynyk (Gonzaga)
Dallas, at thirteen, just had their hearts ripped out by the Thunder taking Cody Zeller because that was going to be their pick. After originally taking Kelly Olynyk and trading him to Boston, they decide to keep this pick, suck it up, and take Ben McLemore out of Kansas.
McLemore was a star for Coach Bill Self and the Jayhawks, scoring 15.9 points per game during his one season playing in Lawrence. Many scouts thought he would be a surefire star in the league, but after being selected seventh by the Kings, that could not be any further from reality.
17 Utah - Tim Hardaway Jr. (Michigan)
Original Pick: Shabazz Muhammad (UCLA)
The Jazz originally picked Shabazz Muhammad from UCLA here and swapped him with Minnesota, as they got Trey Burke in return. That is not going to happen this time with Burke going to the Pistons, so they take their chances with the other guard out of Michigan, Tim Hardaway Jr.
16 Milwaukee - Shabazz Muhammad (UCLA)
Original Pick: Giannis Antetokounmpo (Greece)
The Bucks sitting at fifteen are really angry over missing out on Giannis Antetokounmpo (#6) and Ben McLemore (#13) because they were the guys they really wanted. They know they have to let it go so they look at their board and take a guy who many scouts thought would be gone by now and take Shabazz Muhammad out of UCLA.
He was originally taken 14th overall by the Jazz, who traded him to Minnesota for Trey Burke, but with that not going to work this time, the Jazz went a different route. Muhammad was considered by many to be the top recruit going into college before the 2012-13 season and had Kentucky, North Carolina, and Duke wanting him to come play for them, but he decided to play at UCLA.
15 Boston - Kelly Olynyk (Gonzaga)
Original Pick: Lucas Nogueira (Brazil)
At 16, the Celtics originally drafted Lucas Nogueira from Brazil and traded him to Dallas for Kelly Olynyk out of Gonzaga. This time around, there is no need for that trade because Olynyk is sitting there for them to take.
During his career at Gonzaga playing for Coach Mark Few, Olynyk became the talk of college basketball. He was a seven footer who could stretch his game out past the three point line, which, in today’s NBA, is something every team would like to have.
14 Atlanta - Mason Plumlee (Duke)
Original Pick: Dennis Schroder (Germany)
At seventeen, the Hawks have to deal with Dennis Schroder, their original pick at this spot, not being there this time around and since they own both the 17th and 18th picks, there are a million directions they could go in. So at 17, they decide to go big and take Mason Plumlee out of Duke.
He has a slender build, but can bang around with any big man in the paint and can play above the rim. In Atlanta, he would probably either play alongside or behind Al Horford and with Horford leaving for Boston in free agency this offseason, Plumlee would have his chance to shine in the upcoming year.
13 Atlanta - Isaiah Canaan (Murray State)
Original Pick: Shane Larkin (Miami)
With their next pick, the Hawks pick their point guard in Murray State’s Isaiah Canaan. After seeing Damian Lillard tear up the league after being drafted out of little-known Weber State, the Hawks hope for the same out of Canaan.
During his time at Murray State, Canaan averaged about 15.5 points per game and can play both guard positions, which is enticing to the Hawks who already have Jeff Teague. Canaan has played for the Rockets and Sixers during his career and has averaged 9.4 points per game, while shooting 36.3% from behind the arc.
12 Cleveland- Matthew Dellavedova (St. Mary’s)
Original Pick: Sergey Karasev (Russia)
The Cavaliers are on the clock again and, no, they are not taking Anthony Bennett at this spot. However, they are going to take a guy that many Cavs fans love and that is Matthew Dellavedova out of St. Mary’s.
This pick is based on fit more than anything else. Delly is a scrappy point guard who will get down on the floor and go after a loose ball if his team needs him to. LeBron James even compared him to Mike Miller, who played the same type of way during his time with James in Miami. Like Miller, Dellavedova can knock down the three and can make plays for his teammates. He is also a strong defender who seems to always anger the person he is defending with his tough defense.
11 Chicago - Tony Snell (New Mexico)
Original Pick: Tony Snell (New Mexico)
Like the Cavaliers’ pick of Dellavedova with the previous pick, the Bulls are going with fit and sticking with their original pick of Tony Snell out of New Mexico.
He has not been a star player during his career, but down in the bottom third of the first round, you are just hoping for somebody who can be a role player and if they do turn into a star, then great. He has only averaged 5.3 points per game, but Snell has made up for his lack of offensive production by being a strong, lockdown defender, which is what the Bulls’ coach at the time, Tom Thibodeau, loved about Snell as that is what he looks for in players.
10 Utah - Rudy Gobert (France)
Original Pick: Gorgui Dieng (Louisville)
The Jazz originally took Gorgui Dieng here at #21 and dealt him away to eventually wind up with Rudy Gobert. Well, look who is sitting there at this spot. It is Rudy Gobert, so that is the Jazz’s pick.
Many international talent scouts, including ESPN’s Fran Fraschila, raved about how much they loved Gobert and how he was the most NBA ready international player in this draft. Gobert has played since day one with the Jazz and has averaged 7.2 points pwe game, including a career-high 9.1 points this past season. He is also a force on the defensive end, averaging about two blocks per game, as well as on the glass, averaging 8.5 rebounds per game during his career.
9 Brooklyn - Allen Crabbe (California)
Original Pick: Mason Plumlee (Duke)
The deeper we get into this draft, the harder it is for teams to find a player who can contribute to their cause. The Brooklyn Nets are on the clock and, when looking at their draft board, there is one name that jumps out to them and that name is Allen Crabbe from California.
Crabbe was originally selected in the second round by the Blazers and has become a reliable role player for them. Just this offseason, he signed a four-year, $75 million qualifying offer from the Nets that was matched by the Blazers, so he is staying put.
8 Indiana - Anthony Bennett (UNLV)
Original Pick: Solomon Hill (Arizona)
The talent in this draft is dwindling with every pick and with the Pacers on the clock, they do not know which way to turn. They explore their options and say “why not take Anthony Bennett here?”
When the Cavs took him with the first pick, NBA fans were sort of shocked because there were several players that were considered for that pick and would have fit in the Cavs’ system better than Bennett did. He turned out to be a complete bust in just one year with the Cavs and spent most of that year in the D-League. He was shipped to the Timberwolves in the deal that brought Kevin Love to Cleveland. To nobody’s surprise, he struggled there as well.
7 New York - Andre Roberson (Colorado)
Original Pick: Tim Hardaway Jr. (Michigan)
Year after year, draft after draft, it seems like Knicks fans are never happy with their draft pick. Even last year, when the Knicks drafted a stud in Kristaps Porzingis, their fans had nothing but boos to give.
6 LA Clippers - Gorgui Dieng (Louisville)
Original Pick: Reggie Bullock (North Carolina)
Like many picks in this draft, there are a million different ways to go because all of the playerrs who are left have really not done much so far in their careers. With pick #25, the Los Angeles Clippers select Gorgui Dieng out of Louisville.
Dieng could be considered the sleeper of the draft because no one expected him to have an impact on a team and thought he would be a project. However, like many players, his numbers have gone up every season so far in his career, which is always a good thing.
5 Minnesota - Ray McCallum (Detroit)
Original Pick: Andre Roberson (Colorado)
The Timberwolves decide to take a shot with Ray McCallum, a point guard from mid-major Detroit. McCallum was originally drafted 36th overall by the Kings and, during his career, has averaged 6.0 points per game while playing for the Kings, Spurs, and Grizzlies.
This is the Timberwolves’ second pick in the first round after taking Robert Covington ninth. They originally took Andre Roberson with the pick, but with him off the board, they decide to go with another guy from a small school.
4 Denver - Joffrey Lauvergne (France)
Original Pick: Rudy Gobert (France)
With the 37th pick, the Nuggets, like many teams in the bottom third of the draft, have several options as to which player they could take. They have been looking for a wingman to fill the void that Carmelo Anthony left when he was traded to the Knicks. They also seem to always be enticed by international big men. That is the direction they will go in. They select Joffrey Lauvergne from France, who they originally took 55th overall, and this pick is based on fit more than anything else.
3 San Antonio - Raulzinho Neto (Brazil)
Original Pick: Livio Jean-Charles (France)
If you see the Spurs drafting this late in the first round, you start to think “what international player do they have their eye on?” With their original pick, they took Livio Jean-Charles from France and he has yet to play a game in the NBA and most likely will never come over to play. In the do-over, the Spurs take another international player, but one who will come over and play two years after he was drafted and that player is Raulzinho Neto out of Brazil.
2 Oklahoma City - Archie Goodwin (Kentucky)
Original Pick: Archie Goodwin (Kentucky)
With two picks left in the first round, the Thunder are back on the clock after taking Cody Zeller with the 12th pick. With this pick, they decide to go for a guard and take Archie Goodwin out of Kentucky, who they originally took with this pick, but traded to Phoenix. This time around though, they are going to keep him.
Goodwin has played with the Suns during his career, averaging 6.2 points per game. At this pick, the Thunder are hoping he can learn and develop under Russell Westbrook and become the same type of guard that Westbrook is, because after watching him in college, Goodwin has the skill to do it. During his one year at Kentucky playing for John Calipari, Goodwin averaged 14.1 points and, more impressively, 4.6 rebounds per game, which is pretty good for a guard.
1 Phoenix - Alex Len (Maryland)
Original Pick: Nemanja Nedovic (Serbia)
With the final pick of the first round and their second pick of the round, the Phoenix Suns take who they originally took fifth overall and select Alex Len out of Maryland.
He has been hobbled by injuries most of his career, but seems to be over that. He played a career high 78 games including 46 starts this past season and averaged 9.0 points, along with 7.6 rebounds per game. His numbers have gone up every year and. with this pick, the risk is lower than it was when the Suns took him fifth overall.
Len started getting hype after his strong performance in a season-opening loss to Kentucky, in which he manhandled the likes of Nerlens Noel and Willie Cauley-Stein inside. He is also one of those big men that can stretch his game past the three point line and can hurt the opposition from beyond the arc. At 30, Alex Len is a safe pick here for the Suns because if he does not turn out, you do not look like total fools.
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