A writer at long-time NBA draftnik site, NBADraft.net, mocked the third round of this year's NBA draft. After acknowledging what had been anticipated for some time, that 2014 would be a "mega draft", he predicted Ronald Roberts, Jakarr Sampson and Aaron Craft would've been selected, 20th, 25th, and 30th, respectively. These players may very well have been chosen in a weaker draft, like 2013. It was written on July 3rd, before Summer League began.
So its not that much of a surprise to some across the nation to see Roberts and Sampson showing out on the Sixers summer league team. Again, good job General Hinkie. In a draft uncommonly stocked with talent, we get to choose from eight of the top 90, when statistically speaking we should only have three.
They're not signed, and not even guaranteed to be on the Sixers team in Vegas. I hope there's not hesitation. Buyout Moultrie and add Roberts. Sampson, to me, is a no-brainer. 6'9 with shooting guard skills. Plays a little loose on offense. It shows, of all places, at the free throw line, where he's missed far too many for a prospect looking for a job. Still, the Sixers could use at least one other player not named Tony Wroten who naturally attacks the rim off the dribble.
Defensively, he gets in his man's face. It's aggressive. He piled up three steals and two blocks in the game against Houston, off the bench. That's James Johnson of Memphis (now Toronto) type production, with infinitely more offensive potential.
As much as I am digging Noel, Grant, McDaniel, Roberts, and Sampson, it's not realistic to think we can keep all of them. And while Roberts is local and has the type of hustle game that would endear him to fans and his teammates, I fear his ceiling is Chuck Hayes because, other than dunking, which he does well, has no other discernible knack of offensive skill.
Jakarr Sampson on the other hand will be an NBA player, whether its with the Sixers or not. His length, fluidity, offensive aggressiveness combined with defensive willingness make for a ten year vet even if not as a star or starter. Somebody on Liberty Ballers compared him to Tim Thomas. It's not only a phenotypical match, but their games are similar as well, except Thomas was a smooth shooter from day one, while Sampson attacks harder.
Looking forward to this championship game!