Stanley Johnson easily took the 8th spot on the Sixers' community board by earning nearly 60% of the popular vote yesterday. 8th is about right for Johnson, who came into the year projected to be picked in the 5-10 range and has lived up to that billing, while not doing enough to improve his standing.
After coming into the season with a reputation as a poor shooter, Johnson mostly appeased those concerns, as he shot 37% from three on more than 100 attempts, and complemented that production with 74% efficiency from the line. At 6'7, with a chiseled 240 pound frame, Johnson has the strength to become a strong wing defender within a few years in the league. Concerns over his creation ability, lateral quickness, and athletic explosion lower his ceiling to being no more than a second or third option, but he is almost guaranteed to become a high end "3-and-D" player on the wing.
Willie Trill Cauley-Stein seems to be the favorite for the 9th spot on the board, as he garnered 27% of yesterday's vote. Challenging him are Myles Turner and Kelly Oubre, who both start in large holes, but may be able to take enough of Johnson's support to make it a contest. Kevon Looney and Devin Booker join them.
Looney has seen his stock plummet after an uninspiring end to the college season, but as a floor spacing 4, he still has plenty of potential. As for Booker... don't vote for Booker. Just don't. He somehow has a reputation as a good defensive player. He's not. And he's a minus passer with negative creation skills. If you want to spend a first round pick on a negative defender whose only contribution on offense is standing in the corner, Booker is your guy. Otherwise, you might want to look elsewhere.
Sweet shooting Frank Kaminsky joins the fracas today. The senior from Wisconsin won national player of the year honors in leading Wisconsin to the BIG regular season and conference championships, as well as a runner up showing in the NCAA tournament. Kaminsky would be a good fit next to both Embiid and Noel as a floor-spacing shooter at the 4.
1. Karl-Anthony Towns - Kentucky Wildcats
2. D'Angelo Russell - Ohio State Buckeyes
3. Jahlil Okafor - Duke Blue Devils
4. Mario Hezonja - Barcelona (Spanish ACB)
5. Emmanuel Mudiay - Guangdong (CBA)
6. Justise Winslow - Duke Blue Devils
7. Kristaps Porzingis - Baloncesto Sevilla
8. Stanley Johnson - Arizona Wildcats
Please help team Liberty Ballers qualify for the $1 million The Basketball Tournament this summer in Philadelphia! The roster includes great local talent that includes: Reggie Redding (Villanova),Antonio Pena (Villanova), Ryan Brooks (Temple), Garrett Williamson (St. Joe's) and more! Vote for Liberty Ballers here.