I'm going to clear the air on this first, because I had people coming at me hard last night: I gave the Bulls Doug McDermott and Adreian Payne in the very long mock draft I did for the mothership not because that's who *I* would want the Bulls to take, but because that's who I think they would select if the board broke the way I predicted it would. Objectivity is a bitch, and sometimes that means your favorite team is drafting a dude who compares most favorably to Adam Morrison just because you think he'd pass the grit test.
There are players I like more than Doug McDermott available at No. 16 in the mock I did. N.C. State forward and all-around cold-blooded killer T.J. Warren would likely be my personal choice. I'd take UCLA shooting guard Jordan Adams over McDermott. I might take Elfrid Payton or Rodney Hood or P.J. Hairston. You get the point.
I don't want to turn this into a McDermott post, because there will be more time for that, but I wanted to rehash a discussion I had on Twitter with our friend Kevin Ferrigan (follow him!) last night. This might be a country divided by a two-party political system, but I think anyone with half a brain can agree there is truly no exercise more pointless than having an argument on Twitter. You ain't changing someone's mind in 140 characters. Remember that, everyone, please.
Kevin believes McDermott would be a terrible pick, and went as far to say that he's not an NBA player. I countered by saying McDermott would likely be a bad pick in the top 10, but I think he'll be a solid role player for a long time, so I'd fine with him going No. 16, I suppose. It would be a low ceiling-high floor pick. Maybe that's a bummer, but maybe you remember high ceiling-low floor bros like Tyrus Thomas and James Johnson and suddenly think an ace three-point shooter who won't do a ton else doesn't sound too reprehensible so long as he can stick in a league for a decade. By the end of this argument with Kevin, I found myself taking a pro-McDermott stance, which is something I do not ever want on my conscience.
Since the end of the NCAA Tournament, McDermott has been projected by most mocks to go in the top 10. That still very well may happen. This has drawn the ire of those in both the scouting and analytical communities because McDermott is an inherently limited player. If you draft him in the top 10, he's expected to be a starter for you. There are a lot of people who will tell you McDermott is not fit to be an NBA starter, and I tend to agree.
But at No. 16? Going against second units? I'm not endorsing it, but I'm not totally against it either. The "he has to defend LeBron/KD/Paul George" argument is moot at that point (hello, Jimmy!).
It's easy to look at McDermott and say his scoring numbers won't translate, because of course they won't. But because he was such a nasty all-around scorer, I think some forget just how pure of a shooter he is. He's probably the best shooter in this draft (right there with Nik Stauskas), and Lorde knows the Bulls always need shooting. Look at these numbers (senior year at the top, freshman at the bottom):
Those are pretty absurd percentages from three for such a high volume of attempts, especially when you consider all of the defensive attention he was drawing. I think McDermott has a good head for the game, too, and will be a better passer than his college assist numbers indicate.
Now: don't ask him to put the ball on the floor or defend, because that's a stretch. And yes, those are two huge facets in the modern NBA game. This is why I'm not arguing in favor of McDermott at No. 16, I'm only reasoning with my gut feeling that the Bulls would draft him if he's available.
MOCKING THE MOCKS
Let's do this.
ESPN: I don't pop molly / I read Chad Ford. Hawaii's foremost draft expert has the Bulls taking Syracuse point guard Tyler Ennis at No. 16 and Duke small forward Rodney Hood at No. 19. How do you feel about that, Nick Friedell?
Only one man can rally Syracuse now. pic.twitter.com/Y1a3zIknsp— jon greenberg (@jon_greenberg) September 7, 2013
CBS: We got three bros making picks over at CBS. Gary Parrish gives the Bulls Dario Saric and Ennis. Zach Harper goes with Ennis and T.J. Warren. Matt Moore says Stauskas and Warren.
Yahoo!: Gary Harris and Kristaps Porzingis. Who is Kristaps Porzingos? He's a very skinny 7-footer from Latvia who shoots threes. I personally think that sounds like the future, but the consensus seems to be that he's likely to pull out. Maybe he's the new Kukoc and the new-new Mirotic?
Bulls.com: Sam Smith likes Washington guard C.J. Wilcox and my boy Zach LaVine! Sam Smith, always so sane and rational.