Sure things aren’t always sure things with the NBA Draft. From Sam Bowie to Michael Olowokandi there have been so many draft busts among the first few selections, it’s difficult to keep track.
Just look at the enigma that is Michael Beasley, a guy no coach in his right mind would have passed on at the number 2 slot behind Derrick Rose two years ago. Meanwhile in today’s world Beasley might not be welcomed back to Miami next year with the team’s win-now mindset.
This year’s draft has only two elite players; John Wall and Evan Turner. Not only do they both have the immense upside, but they were proven commodities at the collegiate level.
Guys like Derrick Favors and Demarcus Cousins might turn heads with their physical skills but have questions surrounding their games. Favors wasn’t a big time producer in college averaging 12.4 points and 8.4 boards per contest, while Cousins has massive character questions.
Wall is not only a freak physically with his insane speed and athleticism but he was the best player in each and every game he played.
Watching the Kentucky Wildcats play you had the feeling that he could take over a game at any point. His production wasn’t too shabby either, averaging 16.6 points and 6.5 assists, and 1.8 steals.
Wall is going to thrive at the next level because he is a flat out playmaker. His ceiling is in the clouds. Think Rajon Rondo’s athleticism in a bigger body, with better shooting technique.
Wall flies down the court and has the potential to be the best defensive guard in the league. He has no weakness physically and was probably created in the same lab in which Lebron James was genetically engineered.
Sometimes you can tell how good a player really is by watching his team without him, which was the case for Evan Turner for six games during the middle of the season. The Buckeyes experienced three of their 8 losses during the six games in which Turner was out with an injured back.
Besides being a premier scorer (20.4 points a clip), Turner is a versatile player who can effectively play both guard spots as well as small forward. He is a great playmaker as well and averaged 6.0 assists a game last year despite not technically being the team’s point guard.
Another positive about Turner’s game is that all of his weaknesses can be fixed. He had a high turnover rate in college (4.4 turnovers a game last year), needs more muscle, and doesn’t have the ideal range on his shot. With the right coaching and training he can turn those mishaps around.
Although Turner isn’t a jaw dropper of an athlete like Wall, he should fit in nicely in any type of offense. Think a bigger, better passing Brandon Roy.
The Washington Wizards are going to select Wall with the top pick not because Turner isn’t a superb player but beacuse Wall is a once in a generation type talent. Whether Turner goes number two or slips to three remains to be seen, but whoever snags him will be more than satisfied.