Osiris Eldridge totally screwed up my draft board by withdrawing his name. He surely would have been a No.1 pick in my book. Wait, so you say I'm not drafting the All-MVC First Team for the 2009-10 season? Well, carry on, then.
1. Los Angeles Clippers - Blake Griffin, Oklahoma. The Clippers could shock the world by not picking the consensus No. 1 overall pick, but that would make too much sense. Expect the unexpected, so expect the Clips to do the right thing.
2. Memphis Grizzlies - Hasheem Thabeet, UConn. The story out of Memphis this week that Mike Conley, Jr., is, in fact, the point guard of the future. But riddle me this, who was the last "junior" to be a superstar? Ken Griffey, Jr.? I rest my case.
3. Oklahoma City Thunder - James Harden, Arizona State. The Durant-Harden-Westbrook trio surely will score more than Wilt Chaimberlain on ladies night, right? But if they miss, who's getting rebounds? I guess OKC will cross that bridge when they get to it.
4. Sacramento Kings - Ricky Rubio, Spain. Brandon Jennings thinks this guy is all hype as he takes the easy way out to knock the only guy in the draft less educated than he is.
5. Washington Wizards - Jordan Hill, Arizona. I haven't cared about the Wizards since Michael Jordan left. And before that, I hadn't cared about them since they were the Bullets. The only thing Washington has going for itself is Clinton Portis, and that black guy that's president.
6. Minnesota Timberwolves - Tyreke Evans, Memphis. He proved in the NCAA Tourney that he can ball with the best of 'em as he carried the Tigers' offensive load. He won't be asked to do much in Minnesota, where he becomes the third black guy to star in the state, the first since Prince.
7. Golden State Warriors - Stephen Curry, Davidson. Curry absolutely dominated last week's workout in New York City. Too bad the Knicks will only get to see him one time per year as Don Nelson gobbles up this former mid-major gunner.
8. New York Knicks - Jonny Flynn, Syracuse. So, who wins more games in The Garden next year? 'Cuse or Knicks?
9. Toronto Raptors - DeMar DeRozan, Southern California. Unless DeRozan is asked to show off his stick work for the Maple Leafs, no one in Canada will care about the orange round ball until the it becomes a hockey puck.
10. Milwaukee Bucks - DeJuan Blair, Pittsburgh. Blair fits so well in Milwaukee, the Packers might pick him up as a line-man. Or someone who will take Brett Favre's knees out from under him when he dons a Minnesota Vikings jersey.
11. New Jersey Nets - B.J. Mullens, Ohio State. The Nets are looking to add size to a frontcourt that features soft (Josh Boone) and softer (Yi Jianlan) and soon, softest (Mullens.)
12. Charlotte Bobcats - Gerald Henderson, Duke. Henderson won't need to wander far off tobacco road for his next road, as the Carolina connection (Air Jordan & Larry Brown) will draft the former Dukie, if only to show off their most recent championship ring to a hated rival.
13. Indiana Pacers - Eric Maynor, Virginia Commonwealth. At this point, the Pacers could draft Blake Griffin and acquire Kobe Bryant via trade and it still would not matter because their head coach would still be Jim O'Brien. Who, for the record, is terrible.
14. Phoneix Suns - Brandon Jennings, Italy. Awaiting Ricky Rubio's response.
15. Detroit Pistons - Austin Daye, Gonzaga. He allegedly dogged it at camps so he can be drafted by a non-lottery team. This makes as much sense as staying in the draft for Daye. He must be thinking about the life of luxury. That thought will be erased as soon as he enters Detroit city limits.
16. Chicago Bulls - Jrue Holiday, UCLA. It is very likely that the Bulls will be looking to trade Kirk Hinrich in order to acquire some frontcourt beef (Kaman? Bosh? Camby?) and will need a back-up to give D-Rose some time to, er, study up. I've seen Holiday in person, he's got the goods.
17. Philadelphia 76ers - Ty Lawson, North Carolina. The addition of Jason Kapono means the Sixers need a drive-and-dish point guard. Lucky for them, Lawson has exceled at just that for the last three years.
18. Minnesota Timberwolves - Terrance Williams, Louisville. The guy could be an elite basket-filler if he keeps his head in the game. Unfortunately, I feel if Rick Pitino couldn't get the max out of him, it's not gonna happen in Minnesota.
19. Atlanta Hawks - Jeff Teague, Wake Forest. Based on researching prior drafts, I've come to the conclusion Atlanta is allergic to point guards. It makes me wonder: Do combo guards count?
20. Utah Jazz - Earl Clark, Louisville. Had Clark waited a few years, he could have developed in the lottery, which would have been great for his checkbook, but not so great when you're playing for the Clippers or the Thunder. I think Jerry Sloan could coach him up and get the most out of the talented big man.
21. New Orleans Hornets - Chase Budinger, Arizona. The Hornets offense operates most efficiently when CP3 can dish to any one of several gunners on the court. Budinger can shoot. Oh, and did you know he played volleyball? (This will be part of the NBA Draft drinking game.)
22. Dallas Mavericks - Patrick Mills, Saint Mary's. Jason Kidd is as good as gone, but Mills will be good as long as he doesn't let the derogatory "Paaaaatty" chants get under his skin.
23. Sacramento Kings - Omri Casspi, Israel. Sure, why not?
24. Portland Trail Blazers - Tyler Hansbrough, North Carolina. Once upon a time, the Blazers had a bunch of tough guys. Hansbrough fits that mold, except for that whole not being a thug thing. He can work on that though, right?
25. Oklahoma City Thunder - DaJuan Summers, Georgetown. An athletic big that can play both forward spots and possibly bring down rebounds. That's gotta help a team that's gonna be chucking the ball from about 40 feet away from the basket.
26. Chicago Bulls - Wayne Ellington, North Carolina. There are two people I am currently crushing on. One is Ellington, can you guess the other? I'll give you a hint, it's a girl!
27. Memphis Grizzlies - Taj Gibson, Southern California. Remember what I said about Summers? Copy and paste, here. Thanks.
28. Minnesota Timberwolves - Sam Young, Pittsburgh. The T'Wolves have three first-round picks. One of them has to be good, right?
29. Los Angeles Lakers - Jeff Pendergraph, Arizona State. When free agency comes a-callin', it's a safe bet the Laker frontcourt will be as depleted as the crowd at a Washington Nationals game.
30. Cleveland Cavaliers - Marcus Thornton, LSU. Someone needs to come off the bench and score for the Cleveland LeBrons as a rookie. Eventually Thornton will take over the scoring load once LeBron leaves for New York.