As many may recall, I was rather upset when we drafted CJ, not because I anticipated a foot injury, but because I felt there were better options available. My reasoning was that the Blazers didn't need to go with a safe choice, they needed to go with a potential game changer. At the 10th spot in a historically weak draft, we had to swing for the fences in the sense that we needed high risk / high reward kind of players. I also tend to prize athleticism and unique physical gifts over skilled players with average athleticism.
The three guys I advocated where Steven Adams, Dennis Schroeder and Giannis Antetokounmpo. I haven't looked into Steven Adams production this season, but to be honest Centers and PG's who aren't top 7 or so selections usually don't pan out right away and take a couple of years to develop. I looked at Schroeder and he was great to my eye in the Summer League in terms of assist numbers and steals, however he definitely looked both very athletically talented and very raw. So for the moment I will put aside Adams and Schroeder and focus on the pick I felt had the most upside, but also was by far the biggest risk and that is Giannis.
If you haven't heard he's had a couple of pretty interesting games so far in the Pre-Season:
Vs. the Cavs he went for: 14 points, 4 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 steals, 3 blocks, 5 turnovers and 1 3-pointer.
Vs. the T-wolves he had: 4pts, 4 blks, 1 stl and 7 boards
He also had a relative stinker in there where he didn't do much of anything in limited minutes.
I thought huh, this is pretty intriguing from a kid who's 18 and picked 15th in the draft. He is what I projected him to be, raw and able to just fill up a stat sheet. He's listed as a SG but I see him more as a SF or a swing man 2/3. I thought he would be a great addition to the team in that he could put in minutes at the 2 with AMAZING size and then also play the 3 as well as he's 6'9". If he blossomed as I hoped he would be a potential replacement to what I considered to be a mildly too rich contract for Batum. He looks to be quite similar to Batum in many ways in that he's a bit of a do everything player.
So I'm curious, do you guys think we should have taken Giannis? Do you think those were anomalous games? Anyone else picked after 10 that you true basketball addicts have noticed as going nuts?