Six years ago, this is what the 2012 First Round of the NBA Draft should’ve looked like...
These are some pretty good-looking top 5 picks…
No. 1 Pick, Hornets: Anthony Davis
Original pick: Anthony Davis
New Orleans hit the nail on the head with The Brow. It wasn’t exactly brain surgery as Davis was expected to go first overall after a stellar season at Kentucky, winning the 2012 NCAA championship. AD has put aside injuries to become a superstar in the NBA, and the crazy thing is, he can still get better!
No. 2 Pick, Bobcats: Damian Lillard
Original pick: Michael Kidd-Gilchrist
Michael Jordan would love a re-do on this one. MKG has had a decent NBA career so far…but is there such a thing as Kidd-Gilchrist time?? Lillard was, of course, originally picked by the Blazers at No. 6 and has blossomed into one of the best players in Portland history. This draft will be a painful memory for Charlotte for a while.
No. 3 Pick, Wizards: Draymond Green
Original pick: Bradley Beal
Green was originally selected at No. 35! Green was by far the biggest slip up of the 2012 draft. Then again, would he have done as well in a system other than the Warriors? This postseason, Green is averaging 11.7 pts, 11.3 rebs, and 8.5 assists per game. Beal has had a good career so far, but Draymond has been a big part of two championships. Advantage Green.
No. 4 Pick, Cavs: Bradley Beal
Original pick: Dion Waiters
Beal was picked right about where he should be, originally a No. 3 overall pick. He’s shown steady improvement until finally becoming an All-Star this past season. The Cavs could have used Beal when LeBron returned from South Beach, who knows if Cleveland would have more than just one title if they had picked Beal.
No. 5 Pick, Kings: Andre Drummond
Original pick: Thomas Robinson
Yep, T-Rob, who many loved in Portland because of his infectious smile, was a pretty big bust as the No. 5 pick. Drummond, on the other hand, has been a very serviceable big in the league who was originally slotted at No. 9. This season Drummond averaged a very sold double-double of 15 ppg and 16 rpg, and has led the NBA in rebounds two of the last three seasons.
Blazers pick at No. 6
Leading up to the Blazers next pick….
No. 7 Pick, Warriors: Jae Crowder
No. 8 Pick, Raptors: Harrison Barnes
No. 9 Pick, Pistons: Evan Fournier
No. 10 Pick, Hornets: Michael Kidd-Gilchrist
Blazers pick at No. 11…
There are plenty of serviceable role players still on the board at this pick, but the Blazers would be wise to pick up SG Dion Waiters, who originally was selected No. 4 overall. Waiters has averaged 13.3 points and 2.8 assists for his career.
Where would Will Barton and Maurice Harkless end up on this redraft?
Will Barton (actual position: No. 40) would most likely round out the lottery. No matter what nickname you prefer, ‘The People’s Champ’ or ‘Will the Thrill’, we can all agree that Barton has emerged as a go-to scorer and just a plain entertaining player all around.
Maurice Harkless (actual position: No. 15) would most likely stay right around his original draft spot of 15. Obviously, going from Orlando to Portland was just the change of scenery that Harkless needed. Harkless holds career averages of 7.3 ppg and 3.6 rpg.
More first round picks…
Here’s the short list of notable guys who would still be available to round out the lottery and first round in no particular order…
Original Pick #, Career Averages
Undrafted Kent Bazemore (8.2 ppg, 2.9 rpg)
#14 John Henson (7.9 ppg, 5.5 rpg)
#12 Jeremy Lamb (9.1 ppg, 4.1 rpg)
#17 Tyler Zeller (7.0 ppg, 4.4 rpg)
#10 Austin Rivers (9.4 ppg, 2.4 apg)
#21 Jared Sullinger (10.8 ppg, 7.5 rpg)
#11 Meyers Leonard (5.5 ppg, 3.7 rpg)
#37 Quincy Acy (5.0 ppg, 3.5 rpg)
#5 Thomas Robinson (4.9 ppg, 4.8 rpg)