C.J. McCollum is an interesting cat. I've followed him since his freshman year at Lehigh back when Philly's Masterman High School product Zahir Carrington was still running things up I-476 in Bethlehem. But it's the Duke win that brought C.J. and the Mountain Hawks into the public eye, and I'm not sure how justified that is.
SBN's Satchel Price talked about how McCollum's intrigue is maximized simply because he hasn't been picked apart like these kids from power conferences have. All we have is a few randomly televised games against Sacred Heart, the Duke win, and his numbers to tell us what this exceptionally bright young man will become at the next level.
And I gotta say I'm skeptical. That's not necessarily an indictment on him -- it's a notoriously star-free draft and if I weren't skeptical about everybody, I'd be too confident -- but he's definitely thriving on some of that Damian Lillard shine after Dame's ROTY campaign out of Weber St.
McCollum will be 22 by the time the season starts. Despite the 3PT percentage of 52% everyone is looking at his senior year, he was closer to 36% his previous three seasons of school. He doesn't have a position. He played against some truly terrible competition in the Patriot League. His wingspan is shorter than Khalif Wyatt's. His sprint time was slower than Mason Plumlee's. He can get up, sure. But I don't see one thing he excels at yet. Scoring against bad teams, maybe. I hope it translates. He's terrific on Twitter and he went to freaking LEHIGH. I just don't see C.J. as more than a backup gunner. But he's 8th on our board and that's where he'll remain.
Amidst news that Dario Saric is thinking about pulling his name out of the draft, I'm doing him one better and yanking him from the LB Big Board in favor of the excellently hypthenated Kentavious Caldwell-Pope. You don't mess with us like that, Dario. That leaves Shabazz Muhammad and Cody Zeller as the two returning leaders. Is one of them the pick or did some of the outliers scrounge up enough support to land #9 on the LB Big Board?
And after news that Kelly Olynyk and Mason Plumlee came into work out for the Sixers under cover of darkness, this tweet has a few eyebrow raising names.
1. Nerlens Noel (47%)
2. Ben McLemore (49%)
3. Otto Porter (42%)
4. Victor Oladipo (59%)
5. Anthony Bennett (48%)
6. Trey Burke (46%)
7. Alex Len (45%)
8. C.J. McCollum (38%)