WHERE DOES THE TALENT DROP OFF?
This is an article from the June 11, 2012 issue
Several executives agree: Kentucky freshman Anthony Davis, expected to be taken by the lottery-winning Hornets, is the only sure thing. But while the other top prospects carry higher-than-usual risk, there will be strong values available after the lottery. "It's unstable at the front," says one G.M. "It's hard to be sure what you are getting. But 20 through 40, this is the deepest draft we have had in a long time."
WHO'S THE BIGGEST POTENTIAL BUST?
Ohio State's 6'9" Jared Sullinger. Two executives say he's not athletic enough to play power forward. "He reminds me of Stacey King," says one G.M. But what about Kevin Love, a similarly built, nonathletic four who is now an All-Star? "Love had better range and passing ability," says a West G.M. "Sullinger doesn't play with a high motor. He's going to have a difficult time defending multiple pick-and-rolls."
WHO IS THE TOP INTERNATIONAL TALENT?
Tomas Satoransky, a 6'7" swingman from the Czech Republic. The foreign pool was depleted last year, when 14 overseas players were drafted. "But," says a West executive, "Satoransky could be a second-round steal." The 20-year-old averaged only 4.8 points in 17.3 minutes for Spain's Cajasol Savilla. But, in the words of one exec, "He's a playmaker. He can slash, he's unselfish and he can defend."
WHO STANDS TO IMPROVE THE MOST?
Aside from the Hornets, Washington, which finished the season on a six-game winning streak. Point guard John Wall (7.1% from three-point range) will only get better and Nen√™ will stabilize the front line. The Wizards pick third—a precarious position—but if they can land a contributor (such as Kentucky forward Michael Kidd-Gilchrist or Florida guard Bradley Beal), the surge they began in April should continue.