The idea with this highly fake 2014 NBA Mock Draft with selections from all different people was to simulate, as best a group of Sixers fans can, what a trade-free version of the non-fake NBA Draft would look like. Every team has a different board, just like every writer here, and somebody loves somebody else more than somebody else does. We have a pretty good idea who will be available at #3 -- and Roy nabbed the Sixers Jabari -- but less of one when it comes to The Selection Formerly Known As The Pelicans Pick at #10.
And as we are now just one pick away from the Sixers making that selection (Matt Carey's on the keys for that), we have created the darkest timeline of the NBA Draft. Our top 7 picks essentially were the worst case scenario for the Sixers at 10. I think that's just swell-- we can temper our expectations in this false reality, so June 26th will bring with it many pleasant surprises and many Aaron Gordons.
With that, as the least Maloofian representative for the newly Vivekian Sacramento Kings, I have selected Marcus Smart, a player I may have realized I'm a bit too low on.
The Kings have long been a team with a number of "hey, I kinda like that guy" players clumped together in a slipshod depth chart wherein the starters and reserves are together just as clunky two puzzles getting thrown into the same box. That's the wrong corner piece, John Salmons.
Smart at least represents the least invasive entry into the theoretical plan these Kings could be building. I don't believe in Isaiah Thomas as a starting point guard on a decent team, and he's owed a new contract anyhow, so it's an unstable situation at the guard spot -- I remain confident in Ben McLemore having the ability to be not bad, but I don't necessarily know that the Kings are the place for him to be not bad. Smart, despite the glaring lack of a jumper, represents the nexus of tier-based BPA and smoothish fit.
I don't know what a Smart-McLemore-Rudy Gay-Jason Thompson-DeMarcus Cousins lineup does for anybody, but at the very least, you pocket Marcus and DeMarcus, pray for Ben, and look towards 2015-16 when some money opens up and you can eye a good wing player and defensive-minded stretch 4 to pair with DMC via free agency.
As we've been doing in the spirit of asking people who know their teams more than us, I turned to our friends at the very good Sactown Royalty, Akis Yerocostas and Greg Wissinger, respectively, for their opinions:
With those other guys gone, the Kings would probably go with Smart at that point. Smart gives them a big, defensive point guard that also doubles as Isaiah insurance should he fetch too high a price in free agency for their taste. Smart also has the size to play with any of Sacramento's guards, including Isaiah if they do re-sign him. Dario Saric is a riskier prospect, especially since he might not come for a year or so. This is a team that wants immediate help and Smart's the best chance of that.
Totally agree. I've thought Isaiah is going to be gone for a few months now. I don't want him to be, but I think he will be. I actually wouldn't be shocked if the Kings take Smart even with one of Randle/Gordon/Vonleh available. And I actually think Smart could be a steal in this draft. He's an incredible player who made a bad choice to stay another year in college. I think he's going to be great, whether that's with the Kings or somebody else.
A smarter move may be to move this pick along with some ugly contractual combination of the overpaids Mssrs. Thompson and Landry and open up cap space sooner. That's a rumor we've discussed in the past involving our Thaddeus Young. But as the LBNBA Mock Draft does not have trades, Marcus Smart is what you get.
Rich Hofmann has the mic for the Charlotte Hornets 2.0 and the 9th pick.