I've been getting emails and comments over the past week asking how the pre-draft workout prospects stack up against each other and which ones we should expect to see in a Blazers uniform. Those are nearly impossible questions to answer because...
- Only a small percentage of prospects the Blazers might draft are actually working out here in Portland
- The Blazers have needs at multiple positions and virtually no need at other positions yet maintain that they are looking for the Best Player Available
- The Blazers have shown a willingness to draft both international and American prospects
In some senses, what follows is a hopeless exercise in speculation. Oh well, roll with it. It's fun anyway.
I created the following draft board to rank the players who have worked out for the Blazers in Portland only. This board takes into account a number of things...
- My impressions of the players given the limited amount of time I am able to see them play/shoot combined with their off-court demeanor
- Statements made by Chad Buchanan, Nate McMillan and Kevin Pritchard and other workout attendees (team employees and/or media)
- Player rankings provided by Draft Express or Chad Ford
- Positional needs: If two prospects are exactly equal but play different positions, tie goes to the position where the Blazers lack depth.
- Second Round Bias: The Blazers currently have 1 first round pick and 4 second round picks so it's mathematically likelier that we'll see second round prospects on next year's roster than first round prospects.
This board is not an attempt to predict who the Blazers will select, who will be the best professional or who is the best player today. Instead, this board aims to answer the question "Who would I be least surprised to see drafted by the Blazers this year, regardless of pick?"
For example, I think it's likelier that the Blazers take Chris Johnson with a late second round pick than Greivis Vasquez with one of their earlier picks (given Vasquez's reputation and the likelihood that he will be gone by the end of the second round). So Johnson is rated above Vasquez on this board even though Vasquez has a better reputation as a prospect.
Yes, I realize this is a little bit janky. But this board will be fun to update as we progress through the workouts and hopefully will make for some good discussion. Players will be removed from the board if they decide to return to college or if I hear from someone in the know that I've totally overlooked (or overrated) one or more of the prospects listed. The board will be fixed at 10 names.
Without further ado, here's the first edition of the draft board.
Draft Prospect Board v1.0, 06/09/09
Player -- Projected NBA Position -- Current Team
- Omri Casspi -- 3 -- Israel
- Wayne Elllington -- 2 -- UNC
- Chris Johnson -- 4 -- LSU
- Danny Green -- 2 -- UNC
- DeMarre Carroll -- 4 -- Missouri
- Greivis Vasquez -- 1 -- Maryland (Might return to school)
- Damion James -- 3/4 -- Texas (Might return to school)
- Jerel McNeal -- 1 -- Marquette
- Jeff Adrien -- 4 -- Connecticut
- Jeremy Pargo -- 1 -- Gonzaga
-- Ben (firstname.lastname@example.org)