NBA Mock Draft No. 3

Thursday June 19th, 2008

Mock Draft No. 3
The big shock here is the possibility of the SuperSonics' taking Russell Westbrook at No. 4. Many in the league would criticize this high territory as too rich for Westbrook, who must grow into the new role of NBA point guard after filling in at the point part-time as a UCLA sophomore, but he is in the Sonics' mix because of his athletic potential, character, work ethic and defensive ability. The Sonics are willing to give their draft pick a couple of years to develop, in hopes that he'll be ready to contribute to a winning program as Kevin Durant begins to peak. In that context Westbrook makes sense, as do Jerryd Bayless and Brook Lopez.

1PGDerrick RoseMemphisFr.6-3196
The Bulls need the leadership that Rose showed in the NCAA tournament -- along with his speed, size and court vision.
2PFMichael BeasleyKansas StateFr.6-8239
The Heat can't afford to pass on Beasley's outrageous talent as a scorer to bookend with Dwyane Wade.
3CBrook LopezStanfordSoph.7-0258
The scoring center will enable Al Jefferson to return to power forward. Minnesota also could pick O.J. Mayo or trade down.
4GRussell WestbrookUCLASoph.6-3192
Other options could be Lopez or Bayless, but the guess is that they choose Westbrook's defense and point-guard potential.
5GO.J. MayoUSCFr.6-4200
A big guard ready to help the Grizzlies immediately at both ends of the floor -- but they would be happy to land Kevin Love here too.
6GJerryd BaylessArizonaFr.6-3204
This Ben Gordon-like scorer will help launch the transformation to Mike D'Antoni's up-tempo style.
7SGEric GordonIndianaFr.6-3222
This aggressive scorer will share the scoring burden with Cuttino Mobley and help fill the box score if Corey Maggette departs as a free agent.
8SFJoe AlexanderWest VirginiaJr.6-8220
One of the draft's toughest guys, Alexander will plug a hole at small forward and excel for new coach Scott Skiles.
9F/CKevin LoveUCLAFr.6-9255
New coach Larry Brown will love this hard-nosed player with the skills to score and the smarts to create offense for others.
10SFDanilo GallinariArmani Jeans Milan (Italy)--6-9221
Gallinari is a precocious athlete with an outgoing personality, and he'll hasten the Nets' rebuilding project.

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