If tanking fails to bring number one pick, Charlotte will need a plan B…C…& D « Queen City Hoops

If tanking fails to bring number one pick, Charlotte will need a plan B…C…& D

Kentucky’s Anthony Davis may be the most sure thing in the NBA draft since Lebron James and the Charlotte Bobcats have at least guaranteed themselves the best odds to land him through the NBA draft lottery.

Having a 25% chance to get the number one overall pick is great and all after this disastrous season, but in 2008 the Chicago Bulls had their names pulled out of the lottery for the first overall pick (which was Derrick Rose) and they technically had the ninth (1.7% chance) best odds at getting that pick going into the lottery. Moral of the story, anything can happen and Charlotte certainly isn’t a shoe in to be handed Davis on a silver platter.

In the case that the May 30th draft lottery does go terribly wrong, it’s vital for this franchise to have a plan B, C and D. Technically, Charlotte could fall down to the number four overall pick, but are guaranteed to fall no lower than that since they will end the regular season with the worst record in the league. Now, when you have completed one of the most brutal tanking jobs of all time, which this Charlotte franchise is about to do with the end of this season, it’s extremely important to hit a home run in the draft and that’s what the Bobcats are facing this summer. Here are the players that Michael Jordan, Rich Cho and Rod Higgins are likely looking at:

Thomas Robinson: If I had to guess, I’d say that this is the guy that’s second on the Bobcats big board. Robinson is a fiercecompetitor and his physical prowess suggest that he’s ready to come in and immediately make a difference for an NBA team. Defensively, Charlotte would drastically improve in their first season with Thomas Robinson in the lineup.

He spent three years at Kansas and drastically improved in his time playing under coach Bill Self. Robinson was barely ranked in the top-10 of his 2009 recruiting class, behind names such as Ryan Kelly, Milton Jennings and John Henson. Robinson didn’t really play a vital role for Kansas until this past season as a junior. In his freshman year Robinson only averaged 7.2 MPG, sophmore- 14.6 MPG, but last season the Jayhawks used Robinson as their anchor in the paint and used him 31.8 MPG. He also put up monster numbers last season, averaging 17.7 PPG and 11.9 RPG. Where Robinson is projected to be an immediate impact on the next level is making a huge difference defensively and on the glass.

  • Strength/Physicality: Robinson is extremely strong and he exerts his strength to assert himself on the glass often. He also has great lift which allows him to rise up over taller centers to go get rebounds. Both of the attributes should allow him to guard taller players.
  • Quickness: At 6’9, some scouts have suggested that Robinson is a bit undersized for the PF position in the league, but his quickness will help him make up for that. An evolving face up game that was put on display in the NCAA tournament should only continue to improve when he gets in the NBA and eventually Robinson should be able to go around taller, slower 4′s and 5′s.
  • Attitude: The word on Robinson is that he’s a fierce competitor and extremely coachable. Not a whole lot of baggage.

Bradley Beal: If Charlotte somehow falls to number three in the draft, they’ll likely have their sights set on Beal. The reason I think Beal will be high on the Bobcats board is because of his ability to score. Bradley has very deep shooting range and is also a good ball handler which allows him to play some PG and get into the center of defenses, breaking them down.

He only spent one season at Florida, but that’s all he needed. This kid is ready for the next level. He has a rare combination in his game as a unreal shooter/scorer and is also a great rebounder considering he’s just 6’5. Beal averaged 6.7 RPG last season at Florida and this simply suggest that he’s got a knack for the ball, unafraid to go after it amongst the trees. The one negative from Beal’s one season in college was his inability to knock down the 3-ball. He shot only 34% from deep last season, which was very surprising considering he was recruited out of high school as being the best pure shooter in his class. I wouldn’t be too concerned about it considering how much Beal had to handle the ball last season with the Gators, but a lot of scouts wouldn’t agree.

  • Athleticism: Beal is very athletic, which allows him to be so much more than just a good shooter. He can take defenders off the dribble and get down low among bigger players and make plays on the ball in the air. Beal’s athleticism also plays a role in his ability to play some PG in a pinch.
  • Shooting: Beal drew comparisons to Ray Allen out of high school, so I think that speaks to itself with this guy’s ability to light it up.
  • Work Ethic: The general word on Beal is that he’s got an exceptional work ethic. First guy in, last guy out kind of attitude. Like Robinson, if Beal does have a good reputation with most the NBA scouts leading all the way up to the draft then his potential as a player to go along with a good attitude will make him a shoe-in top-5 pick, no matter how the lottery falls.

Michael Kidd-Gilchrist: This would be the absolute, worst case scenario for the Bobcats, but if they do somehow fall all the way to 4th Kidd-Gilchrist will certainly be in play for Charlotte unless he’s taken 3rd. Kidd-Gilchrist may be the fiercest competitor is this entire draft and if you watched any of the NCAA tournament you have a general idea of what I’m talking about.

The hustle factor is never short of being at full tilt with this guy. Kidd-Gilchrist is an exceptional on the ball defender with his quickness and physicality. Off the ball, Kidd-Gilchrist is just as good as he possesses a complete understanding of defensive concepts that will certainly translate to just about any NBA style.

Offensively is where Kidd-Gilchrist raises some debate. Last season at Kentucky, he used his physicality to bull his way towards the block and will the ball at the rim. He was great at it, but this obviously won’t be as effective in the NBA where players are much bigger and stronger. Kidd-Gilchrist isn’t an awful ball handler, but he also isn’t a great one either. He got very comfortable playing with his back to the basket in his one year in college and his face up game is somewhat limited. When he did face up against defenders last season, he almost always used a power dribble move to get directly to the rim. As a jump shooter Kidd-Gilchrist definitely has some room for improvement and mostly because he didn’t take many last season. The bottom line is that he won’t be able to bully his way towards and around the post area in the NBA all the time, so his perimeter game will have to improve. Kidd-Gilchrist rarely took 3′s in college, but the ones he did shoot ended in a 25.5% total.

  • Motor: Kidd-Kilchrist can play with intensity, passion and physicality for 48 minutes most night’s when he gets to the league. Whichever coach has the privilege of coaching him on the next level is going to be spoiled due to the fact that he won’t have to worry about Michael playing as hard as he possibly can while he’s in the game.
  • Basketball IQ: Michael is an extremely smart basketball player and knows what it means to make the right play. Defensively, KG is far above the average curve and could possibly be the best defensive player on his team (CHA, WAS, NOH, SAC) if he’s drafted in the top-4. Lateral quickness and physicality make him a great on-the-ball defender, but his understanding of team defense and always being in the right spot no matter where the ball is on the floor is what makes his a complete defensive asset. Offensively, I’ve noted that KG needs to develop some kind of outside shot, but he makes up for that extremely well by constantly using his aggressiveness and physicality to get high percentage shots close to the rim.
  • Passion: As I mentioned earlier, KG will be some head coaches’ dream player. The word on this kid is that he loves the game and leaves everything on the floor, every time he goes out. If you watched any of Kentucky in the NCAA tournament, you saw nothing to make you think otherwise.

If the Bobcats don’t get the number one overall pick from the May 30th lottery it will certainly be a setback to the rebuilding process in Charlotte, but with the three high-ceiling prospects that are listed above, it’s clear that not all is lost and these guys have the potential to also be franchise changing talents.

14 comments to If tanking fails to bring number one pick, Charlotte will need a plan B…C…& D

  • Joshua P

    This is the problem with a lottery it doesn’t work (keep a competitive league). This is why NO OTHER SPORT IN THE WORLD uses it. Stupid thing and I hope when the Adam Silver guy becomes commissioner he has enough sense to CHANGE THE SYSTEM. The worst team should get the best pick if they want to tank let them it does nothing but hurt their pockets and keep the league competitive.

  • Jason

    The playoffs has started and all these fools from FalseHoops want to talk about is tanking. How many stories are these fools going to write on tanking? Next they’ll be talking about how tanking is bad for your health. What a joke FalseHoops is terrible!

  • Edmond

    I have a question. If the bobcats don’t get the number one pick, don’t you believe there’ll be enough of a public commotion for the nba to change the rule? No team in nba deserves the number one pick more than this years bobcats, so if we’re robbed there, I think David stern would have to strongly consider changing the rule.

  • Spencer

    Well, I think that the majority of NBA fans would feel justified if the Bobcats didn’t get the number one pick. The whole ‘tanking’ debate and the definition of the term has evolved into meaning that a team has given up on winning now in order to build and hopefully win later. Most NBA fans feel cheated that franchises, like Charlotte, are choosing to ‘tank’ instead of find the best way to put a winning product on the floor. I tend to agree that tanking is not good for the league, but I also argue (in Charlotte’s defense) that it’s the best option for small market team’s to get franchises player’s at the cheapest price. It’s the system that the league has come up with and Rich Cho has already had success with the exact same plan in OKC, so it’s only natural for him to repeat that strategy.

  • Brick

    Please not thomas robinson, haven’t we drafted enough national player of the years who don’t have a true position in the nba. his potential is all but maxed out. Beal’s not terrible but im not too sold on him either. it has to be mkg if were at #2 and i suppose beal at 3. Im glad you left out andre drummond tho, he has no game whatsoever. just a big athletic body with no work ethic. If we get the fourth pick (and the chances are high) and these three guys are off the board im going to cry. this draft is very deep between picks 5-20 or so, great year to be a fringe lottery team you can get a lot for your pick.

  • Rob

    The worst team must be owed the #1 pick by now, hasnt happened since 2004 – when we got screwed out of getting Dwight Howard.

    And no, nowhere near enough people care about the ‘Cats right now for a ‘commotion’ to start about the draft system. It’ll never get changed anyway, Silver is just a Stern clone.

  • S.D.S

    i hate the word tanking, do you really think 1 the players said lets lose? hell no…no player wants to be on the worst team, (Winning percentage) in history…the players didn’t just “TANK” it and i doubt the coaches wanted to either….Charlote was young, often starters were hurt, key role players were hurt ALOT this season, and our rookies and young guys who we had to rely on ALOT, didn’t even have an offseason which a young team desperatly needs….worst team in history? no…worse winning percentage? yes… but worst ever? hell noo.. just ALOT of bad things happened to an already bad team…..

    Beal? i hate beal as a bobcat, all we need is another 2 with the body more of a 1 when we have Kemba…and henderson who should start at the 2….if all we have is beal left i say trade down and get PErry Jones and some more picks….we need a 3 or a 4/5

  • Spencer

    I agree that the players and coaches didn’t want to lose on purpose. The word tanking isn’t aimed as much at players and coaches as it is front offices. When the Bobcats traded away Gerald Wallace and Stephen Jackson for practically nothing but cap space it was assumed the rebuilding/tanking had begun in CHA. If CHA wanted to continue to attempt to be a mediocre eastern conference team and compete for a backend seed in the playoffs they wouldn’t have gotten rid of those guys for a draft pick and Maggette. No one ever expected this season to be this bad, and yes, injuries and youth was the main ingredient fora all the losing. On the same token, management made nothing but moves to make the immediate roster worse last off-season and that’s exactly what people want to call ‘tanking’.

  • SDS

    this is VERY late, but defensivly idk bout Robinson…im a HUGE KU fan and a major thomas robinson fan, not only as a player but a person….i hate to say it but his grandparents and mother all dieing within a month was most likely the best thing for his basketball career…it got him motivated, gave him a place to vent his angers, sadness etc…BUT, defensivly i found him to be beat alot, Withey was the true defensive monster for ku last year, that was robinsons weak point in my opinion, against college guys who dont have much of a post skill set yea hes a monster due to how athletic he is..but against a say Zach randolph he will get torched….Robinson will be a very good rebounder and maybe you are assumming that with good def rebounding the def gets better..which is true

    Robinson i see has a 3 in my opinion, he is athletic enough to do, has a good shot that i think we will see improved ALOT over the off season…his post moves will develop more, he has very good ball handling skills for his size and being a college 4…very smart passer in the post, as a 3 he would need to learn how to pass on the fast break but that will come with time…he will be a mismatch at the 3 offensivly for every player in the league except robinson i think due to his strenth..and Durant, his only concern at playing the 3 would be can he keep up with those quicker 3s in the nba exspecially on a pick and role…

    also i like this about you spencer…my name is spencer as well…:) it is a very good name i have to say

  • SDS

    this is VERY late, but defensivly idk bout Robinson…im a HUGE KU fan and a major thomas robinson fan, not only as a player but a person….i hate to say it but his grandparents and mother all dieing within a month was most likely the best thing for his basketball career…it got him motivated, gave him a place to vent his angers, sadness etc…BUT, defensivly i found him to be beat alot, Withey was the true defensive monster for ku last year, that was robinsons weak point in my opinion, against college guys who dont have much of a post skill set yea hes a monster due to how athletic he is..but against a say Zach randolph he will get torched….Robinson will be a very good rebounder and maybe you are assumming that with good def rebounding the def gets better..which is true

    Robinson i see has a 3 in my opinion, he is athletic enough to do, has a good shot that i think we will see improved ALOT over the off season…his post moves will develop more, he has very good ball handling skills for his size and being a college 4…very smart passer in the post, as a 3 he would need to learn how to pass on the fast break but that will come with time…he will be a mismatch at the 3 offensivly for every player in the league except robinson i think due to his strenth..and Durant, his only concern at playing the 3 would be can he keep up with those quicker 3s in the nba exspecially on a pick and role…

    also i like this about you spencer…my name is spencer as well…:) it is a very good name i have to say

  • SDS

    in my previouse post i said “he will be a mismatch for every player in the league except for “robinson” i meant lebron james there, and then obviously durant due to his length, other then that no one is really both strong and long enough to guard robinson at the 3 in the nba in my personal opinion

  • Foulmouth

    No way!!!! “Cow manure”!!!! IF THEY DON’T GET NUMBER 1 PICK. “Fudge” THE NBA 2012 DRAFT!!!!
    (Yes, I had to edit this one a bit – Brett)

  • Mike

    There are some solid prospects if the ‘Cats miss the number one pick- it would be a shame too because a Biyombo-Davis frontcourt would be unstoppable on defense.

    Although, I’m afraid that Jordan will screw this up. If Charlotte gets the 3rd or 4th pick, I could see MJ ordering Cho to draft the “local” Harrison Barnes to “bring in seats”.

  • Edmond

    Ugh.. I could see that too. MJ bringing in a local college player ( Austin Rivers, Harrison Barnes, Tyler Zeller ) in hopes of gaining fans which hasn’t and will not work( see Sean May and Raymond Felton as examples ). If MJ hopes to put a dent in the NC admiration for college basketball, especially outside of the Charlotte area ( could count the amount of bobcats fans I’ve met in wake county on one hand) he would let Cho make the executive decisions that he’s there to make to rebuild the team into a contender. Seriously.. MJ is out playing golf, gambling, or spending time in the Chicago area, he doesn’t deserve to make those decisions anyways.