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NBA Draft LB Big Board Smackdown: Cody Zeller vs. Shabazz Muhammad

With the Big Board complete, we circle back to the very question that the Sixers may well be asking themselves on draft night.


Voting for the Liberty Ballers NBA Draft Big Board has concluded with Rudy Gobert securing the 15th spot with a heavy majority of the vote. But there's still one bone to be picked in the meat of our prospect list with the Draft just 8 days away: The unbreakable tie between the overrated/underrated Cody Zeller and the overrated/underrated Shabazz Muhammad.

Harken back to the voting for the 9th spot on the Big Board. Before the voting polls closed, Zeller and Shabazz were within a vote or two of each other. In the interest of time and efficiency (SABR), I awarded them a tie. Well, no longer.

Now that we have Dave and Roy hyping their boys in our pre-draft series imploring the Sixers to draft so-and-so, we're opening it up to a PROSPECT THROWDOWN between two guys who I'd wager will be available when the Sixers pick at #11 next Thursday.

Roy's Case for Shabazz

While many players shy away from the spotlight in a close game, Muhammad wants the ball in his hands during crunch time (perhaps too much). A quick scan of the 76ers' roster shows that the team is in desperate need of a go-to option, and if Muhammad is still on the board for the Sixers at No. 11, the choice should be clear.

Of course, the safe play would be to take a big with a low ceiling who figures to be a solid rotation player for the next decade. The smart pick, however, would be the 6'6" wing with the basketball DNA who can rebound, guard multiple positions, and knock down an open jump shot.

Shabazz Muhammad is the future.

Dave's Case for Zeller

Zeller will be in the NBA for a long time.

This last line seems to be the consensus of most draft experts. Zeller could carve a niche in this league as a solid rotational player for years to come. And with the 11th pick in a really weak draft, what else can you ask for? Greedy little fellas, you are. Is Bill Russell available at #11? Is Steven Adams, and his 7 points and 6 boards per game, actually Ralph Sampson in disguise?

People want the home run pick. Swing for the fences. A bunch of Ryan Howards swinging at breaking balls low and away. And I hear ya. The Sixers need a superstar. I get that. But he's not here. Not at #11.

Not in this year's draft.

PROSPECT SMACKDOWN: Who is higher on your draft board? Shabazz or Cody?

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. CJ McCollum (38%)

9/10. Cody Zeller/Shabazz Muhammad (30%)

11. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (31%)

12. Michael Carter-Williams (27%)

13. Steven Adams (25%)

14. Dennis Schroeder (26%)

15. Rudy Gobert (43%)

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