Dime NBA Mock Draft 3.0: Victor Oladipo Rises To The No. 2 Pick

Does this draft class suck? Well, more than a few “experts” maintain it’s not one of the best you’ll ever see. That being said, we don’t really know what’ll happen until these young fellas get drafted and hit the floor. There are plenty of teams that could use Ben McLemore or Anthony Bennett or Alex Len. Now, after the lottery, we have a better grip on which teams will get them.

The NBA Draft Lottery is concluded and with that, here is Dime‘s third 2013 NBA Lottery mock draft.

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1. Cleveland: Nerlens Noel – Kentucky
7-0, C
19 years old, Freshman

The Cavs don’t need a star, just someone who can fit in. As long as the Kentucky big man passes his physical concerns, this should be a no-brainer. Suddenly, Cleveland could have a very interesting foundation. This pick fits because a) he’s the best player available if we’re talking metrics, something Cleveland acknowledges, and b) they’ve kept close tabs on his injury status.

2. Orlando: Victor Oladipo – Indiana
6-4, SG
21 years old, Junior

No one (repeat: no one) has any idea what Orlando is doing. They’re floating smokescreen after smokescreen, at one time thinking Trey Burke would be their guy then saying they’re looking to grab Ben McLemore. In the end, we’re thinking they pass on Burke and instead opt to try to acquire Eric Bledsoe from the Clippers, and then cement their backcourt of the future with a guy who’s still getting better: Oladipo.

3. Washington: Otto Porter – Georgetown
6-8, PF
19 years old, Sophomore

The Wizards vaulted up into the top three and now have a perfect situation lining up for them. They absolutely need a small forward. It’s probably the biggest hole on their roster. And Porter shoots it well and can play without the ball. This is a perfect fit. The team just has to hope Cleveland doesn’t buck the trend and take the wingman first overall.

4. Charlotte: Ben McLemore – Kansas
6-5, SG
20 years old, Freshman

If Oladipo falls to here, we get the feeling Michael Jordan would love him. The Bobcats/Hornets need to take the best talent available, and this is where it gets interesting. Charlotte is apparently trying to pry DeMarcus Cousins away from Sacramento. Most in the know in Sacramento don’t believe the Kings will trade him. If not, Charlotte goes with the guy who’s sliding because people don’t think he wants it bad enough (McLemore).

5. Phoenix: Anthony Bennett – UNLV
6-7, PF
20 years old, Freshman

The last time UNLV had a lottery selection, it was Marcus Banks back in the day. We’re pretty sure Bennett is going to be a little bit better than that. Injury concerns aren’t stopping teams from looking at him in the top five. Alex Len is also a possible pick here, but how can you pass up the next Larry Johnson?

6. New Orleans: Trey Burke – Michigan
6-1, PG
20 years old, Sophomore

This is probably the biggest fall you can expect Burke to take. With the influx of tremendous guards into the league in the last few years, we wouldn’t be surprised to see him sneak into the top three or four, ESPECIALLY if Charlotte makes a deal to move out of the No. 4 spot. The Pelicans did take Austin Rivers in the lottery last year, but that was a disaster and they aren’t in any position to pass up the most talented player left.

7. Sacramento: Alex Len – Maryland
7-1, C
19 years old, Sophomore

The Kings could go a number of different ways with this pick, but we’re guessing they go with someone big. DMC could be on another team very, very soon. If that happens, expect Len to get a look. He’s enormous, has his head in the right place. Plus, big men always rise as we get closer to the draft. The Kings once took Jason Williams at the No. 7 spot, and he immediately helped turn around their franchise. But they won’t find anyone that exciting in this year’s class.

8. Detroit: C.J. McCollum – Lehigh
6-3, PG/SG
21 years old, Senior

From our perspective, the Pistons go one of two ways here. They either take a wing scorer, someone like Shabazz Muhammad, who we had here in the past, or they go for a point guard who can let Brandon Knight slide to the shooting guard spot. Does this pick completely fit? Not really… McCollum is actually very much like Knight. But this is Detroit we’re talking about. Nothing fits here.

9. Minnesota: Shabazz Muhammad – UCLA
6-6, SF
20 years old, Freshman

When asked what he wanted out of this draft, Kevin Love said he needs a shooter more than anything else. Muhammad has the type of credentials that could scream overrated or, perhaps, future All-Star.

10. Portland: Michael Carter-Williams – Syracuse
6-6, PG
21 years old, Sophomore

We’ve already seen how effective Damian Lillard can be at the two. Putting him next to MCW could be deadly… that is if they don’t trade the pick altogether.

11. Philadelphia: Cody Zeller – Indiana
7-0, PF/C
20 years old, Sophomore

We’re putting Lil’ Zeller here because, honestly, we don’t have any idea what the Sixers will do with this pick. A big man makes sense considering the team struggled to score inside and create easy baskets (although it looks more and more like Zeller will be more of a stretch four). And Zeller has SHOCKED everyone with his combine numbers.

12. OKC (from Toronto): Rudy Gobert – International
7-2, C
20 years old, International

We have a feeling Gobert won’t last past OKC, even if others disagree. Portland is adamant about putting a real center next to LaMarcus Aldridge, and we have to remember that big guys always seem to rise in the draft. An international pick makes perfect sense. We’re betting it’s either Gobert or Dario Saric.

13. Dallas: Dario Saric – International
6-10, SF
19 years old, Croatia
Chad Ford is reporting that Dallas is enamored with Saric, but also that the teenager may stay in Europe next season. If he slips past them at No. 13, we’re guessing Boston and Danny Ainge will be quick to secure another longterm building block. He’s definitely one of the draft’s biggest risers.

14. Utah: Shane Larkin – Miami
6-0, PG
20 years old, Sophomore

Everyone seems to agree about one thing: Utah’s biggest hole is at the point guard spot. If the Jazz’s brass feels the same way, it’s probably either Larkin or Dennis Schroeder. Larkin is probably the safer pick and seems more ready to step in and play right away.

15. Milwaukee: Kentavious Caldwell-Pope – Georgia
6-6, SG
20 years old, Sophomore

Milwaukee can pretty much take the best player available, but they could use another shooter. Georgia’s finest is being talked about in some circles as a possible top-10 pick. He’d bring size to a backcourt that could use it.

16. Boston: Jamaal Franklin – San Diego St.
6-5, SG
21 years old, Junior

We’ve been all over the place with this selection, but Franklin is one of the draft’s biggest risers. The Celtics need scorers more than anything else, and while Franklin can’t shoot, he can do everything else. If they get rid of the Truth, we suspect Boston will look to add more depth on the wing here.

17. Atlanta: Steven Adams – Pittsburgh
7-0, C
19 years old, Freshman

If Josh Smith leaves, as expected, Atlanta will be even thinner than normal upfront. Al Horford isn’t a center to begin with, and what they have behind him is not worth much. Adams would be a nice piece to add.

18. Atlanta (via Houston): Allen Crabbe – Cal
6-6, SG
21 years old, Junior

If the Hawks go for a longterm project big with their first pick, we’re guessing they try to get a shooter with the second. Crabbe can stroke it, and is a surprisingly explosive athlete.

19. Cleveland (via L.A. Lakers): Tim Hardaway Jr. – Michigan
6-6, SG
21 years old, Junior

Hardaway Jr. makes sense here, especially if they go big in the lottery. Plus, people at Michigan have been saying this guy already carries himself like a NBA vet.

20. Chicago: Gorgui Dieng – Louisville
6-11, C
23 years old, Junior

An easy match, now that Omer Asik has moved on and the Bulls struggled to find a replacement.

21. Utah (via Golden State): Tony Mitchell – North Texas
6-8, SF
21 years old, Sophomore

The Jazz need scorers and defenders on the wing, and could use someone to ultimately replace the minutes being given to Marvin Williams as he just hasn’t panned out. Mitchell is sort of an unknown at this point, but great combine results have some convinced he can be an effective wing. That’ll help on a team with a number of talented bigs. A point guard and a wing player in the first round would be great gets for Utah.

22. Brooklyn: Kelly Olynyk – Gonzaga
7-0, C
22 years old, Junior

At this point, the Nets just need to take the best player available. Luckily for them, Olynyk’s slide directly coincides with what they need. Outside of Brook Lopez, none of their bigs are particularly skilled. This is a good fit.

23. Indiana: Glen Rice Jr. – Georgia Tech
6-6, SG
22 years old, D-League

Rice Jr. dominated at times in the D-League this year, and there’s nothing the Pacers need more than another shooter. Danny Granger‘s knee has weakened to the point that no one in Indiana seems all that willing to place their trust in him. If he comes back, great. If not, oh well. Rice Jr. is already more of a pro than anyone they can get at this point.

24. New York: Mason Plumlee – Duke
7-0, C
23 years old, Senior

Who knows what Amar’e Stoudemire‘s future holds? And at this point, Plumlee has fallen far enough. If you’re the Knicks, you have to grab him here.

25. L.A. Clippers: Sergey Karasev – International
6-7, SF
19 years old, Russia

Karasev is a fantastic shooter, and could help down the road next to Chris Paul. With Billups and Bledsoe both having cloudy futures, more backcourt help could be key for the Clippers.

26. Minnesota: Dennis Schroeder – International
6-2, PG
19 years old, Germany

The fast-rising point guard could go as high as No. 15, but if he slips, there’s no way Minnesota lets him pass. With a sneaky-athletic lineup, Schroeder would fit in nicely.

27. Denver: Giannis Antetokounmpo – International
6-9, SF
18 years old, Greece

The Nuggets are so deep they really don’t need another rookie right now. Antetokounmpo doesn’t have much experience, playing in a lesser division overseas. But he’s still a very interesting talent.

28. San Antonio: Lucas Noguiera – International
6-11, C
20 years old, Brazil

Because it only makes sense, right? The Brazilian big man is also rising quickly on draft boards… he might not even make it this far.

29. OKC: Reggie Bullock – North Carolina
6-7, SF
22 years old, Junior

Bullock is a more athletic Jared Dudley: someone who can do a little bit of everything and won’t mind playing a utility role off the bench. His versatility would work well in OKC.

30. Phoenix (via Miami): Jeff Withey – Kansas
7-0, C
23 years old, Senior

Many don’t believe the shotblocking monster will drop past Brooklyn at No. 22. If he does, we suspect his size and defense will get him a guaranteed deal somewhere in the bottom half of the first round.

What do you think?

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