With the 31st pick in the draft, the Charlotte Bobcats selected Jeff Taylor of Vanderbilt – a 23 year old senior. Similarities to their first pick, MKG – a small forward, known for his defense (a 3-time All-SEC defensive selection). Differences – age (that whole senior thing versus the youngest player in the draft), wingspan – Taylor’s wingspan is actually just less than his height, and offensive skills – Taylor shot over 40% on threes last season, making 2+ a game. With that high level overview out of the way, let’s get some more thoughts on the newest Bobcats
From around QCH:
Spencer: Great shooter, lockdown defender and a very high basketball IQ. Another guy that will come to Charlotte without any baggage and should compete with Derrick Brown for second tier playing minutes. Taylor is sneaky athletic, but isn’t a highlight factory nor does he play the game with extreme flashiness. Can put the ball on the floor and create his own shot- loves the step back jumper.
Brett: Rich Cho has been saying for draft for talent, trade for need. Drafting two defensive minded small forwards would certainly seem to indicate the Bobcats thought that Taylor was the best player available. I may have been intrigued with the potential of Quincy Miller or the all-around game of Draymond Green, but Taylor has two skills the Bobcats need – defensive aptitude (not Derrick Brown’s strong suit) and three point shooting (the Bobcats were league worst from downtown last season). Like Derrick Brown and Jared Dudley before him, Taylor looks like he could be a rotation caliber player drafted beyond the lottery by the Bobcats.
Mathew: I’m mixed on the Taylor pick. If you view it from the perspective of attaining potential marketable assets, I like it. Taylor was for the most part regarded as the best player on the board at the time of the Bobcats’ pick, sitting in the low 20’s on many big boards. However, if you view it from the perspective of attaining players that are going to help your team win games, I’m not so sure I understand it. My first thought when I saw the pick was much the same as Chad Ford’s, “doesn’t he play the same position and do a lot of the same things as MKG?”. Taylor is a better shooter at this point, for sure. But his strengths are on the ball defense and athleticism. Sound familiar? Overall, I’d probably give the Bobcats a B- for the pick because you can’t overlook the fact that he was highest rated player on the board and acquiring assets (in addition to future picks) to hopefully one day swing a trade is valuable.
@BobcatsBaseline – “MKG/Taylor picks telegraph Bobcats identity going forward. Tough, defensive minded players who can cover lot of ground. Hope they can score.”
Ben Swanson – @CardboardGerald – “Threes on threes on threes RT @chadfordinsider: The Bobcats will select Jeff Taylor with 31st pick”
Tom Ziller – @teamziller – “MKG and Taylor might now be the Bobcats’ best two players.”
From the rest of the web:
James Dator at RufusOnFire.com – “Almost a consensus ‘best player available’ pick, Taylor will add to a bench in need of talent, with a player Rick Bonnell had as the 19th most talented player in the draft. Head Coach Mike Dunlap wanted high energy players, and three point shooting. With this tumultuous week coming to a close this Charlotte Bobcats team has added two high energy guys tonight, and Ben Gordon via trade.”
Matt Moore at Eye On Basketball at CBSSports.com – “Athlete at a discount. Taylor fell out of the first round and the Bobcats were there to catch him. They need talent. He has talent. Great get.”
Ron Green, Jr. at the Charlotte Observer – “When Jeffery Taylor decided to leave Sweden for New Mexico six years ago, he didn’t know the journey would lead him to Charlotte. But Taylor’s decision to pursue his basketball career in the United States made him the first pick in the second round of the NBA draft Thursday night, giving the Charlotte Bobcats a 6-foot, 7-inch small forward with a strong defensive presence.”