It’s been three years into the 2013 draft class, which means it’s time for a redraft of the top prospects. Last year, I redrafted the 2012 draft, which was a fun exercise we could debate for years to come. This 2013 crop was a weaker group of prospects that had a few high-upside international prospects fall in the first round.
At the time, nobody knew who would be the first overall pick in this draft. Surprisingly, the Cleveland Cavaliers swung on Anthony Bennett and missed, though it didn’t end up hindering their future too much — evidenced by their last two Finals runs. The rest of the draft was rather hit-or-miss, with a lack of star power throughout. Who would round out the top ten picks in a 2013 redraft?
Honorable mention: Cody Zeller PF/C, Otto Porter SF, Kelly Olynyk PF, Shabazz Muhammed SF, Andre Roberson SG/SF, Matthew Dellavadova PG, Gorgui Dieng PF/C, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope SG, Michael Carter-Williams PG, Ben McLemore SG, Solomon Hill SG/SF
10. PORTLAND TRAIL BLAZERS – ALEX LEN
It’s a tough choice here between Cody Zeller and Len, but Len had a higher upside coming out of school and adds more size and length than Zeller. The Trail Blazers did draft Meyers Leonard in 2012, but Len would give the team a true center while Leonard can play both frontcourt spots with his ability to stretch the floor.
If Len can manage to stay healthy, it’s a great pickup at tenth overall. However, it’s worth noting the Blazers did draft C.J. McCollum at this spot, which is now looking like a steal.
9. UTAH JAZZ – MASON PLUMLEE
The Jazz needed someone to pair alongside Derrick Favors up front, and Plumlee would have been a great addition here. Favors and Plumlee are both versatile defenders with the ability to move their feet and would fit well together offensively. Plumlee has had a solid start to his career, starting all 82 games for the Blazers last year while averaging 9.1 points, 7.7 rebounds, 2.8 assists, and 1.0 blocks.
8. DETROIT PISTONS – ALLEN CRABBE
The Pistons drafted Caldwell-Pope hoping he’d develop into a two-way wing who could stretch the floor, but he’s struggled with his efficiency in his first three seasons in the league. Crabbe, on the other hand, played well enough off the bench last year to earn a $75 million offer sheet from the Nets this summer, which the Blazers decided to match.
Crabbe would fit in nicely with what coach Stan Van Gundy wants out of his shooting guards given his ability to play both ends of the floor and shoot the ball from deep (39.4 percent from three last year).
7. SACRAMENTO KINGS – DENNIS SCHRODER
The Kings opted for Ben McLemore at this spot three years ago, and while he’s shown flashes, he hasn’t taken the step offensively many hoped through three years in the league. Enter Schroder, who would be their point guard of the future and a solid pick at this spot in the draft.
While it’s taken some time for Schroder to develop, he showed plenty of flashes last year and should have a big opportunity this year as the starter with the departure of Jeff Teague.
6. NEW ORLEANS PELICANS – NERLENS NOEL
Noel was the projected number one pick at midseason, but a torn ACL caused him to fall to pick number seven in the 2013 draft. I’d take Noel at six if I’m the Pelicans, which would give them their center of the future alongside 2012 number one overall pick Anthony Davis. The former Wildcats fit perfectly alongside each other upfront and would smother opponents at the rim.
5. PHOENIX SUNS – STEVEN ADAMS
The Suns get their center of the future in Adams, who looked fantastic during OKC’s playoff run last season and should be an important piece moving forward. Adams should have been drafted higher in 2012 but fell due to his raw skill set on both ends of the floor.
But Adams was only 19 years old in 2013, giving him plenty of time to develop into a premiere big man at the next level. He’s still getting better and would have been a great fit in Phoenix.
4. CHARLOTTE HORNETS – VICTOR OLADIPO
Oladipo to the Hornets might not have made a ton of sense at the time, but Charlotte opts for his upside here. Oladipo has enough two-way upside to warrant this pick, evidenced by going second overall to the Magic in 2013. He’d be a decent fit next to Kemba Walker and small forward Michael Kidd-Gilchrest, Charlotte’s second overall pick in 2012.
3. WASHINGTON WIZARDS – C.J. MCCOLLUM
Despite taking Bradley Beal in 2012, McCollum brings enough versatility to the table to play both guard spots alongside either John Wall and Beal. McCollum has a lot of talent and ability, but he fell to the tenth overall pick due to playing lesser competition and a supposed lack of size.
McCollum has made up for that with his length, strength and underrated athletic ability throughout the early part of his career, and should be a big part of the what the Blazers do moving forward.
2. ORLANDO MAGIC – RUDY GOBERT
At second overall, the Magic draft Rudy Gobert, who was arguably the most intriguing draft pick in 2013. Gobert fell all the way to the 27th overall pick because scouts were worried if his frame and mobility would translate to the next level. The Nuggets selected Gobert but traded him to the Jazz for just a second round pick and cash.
Gobert has been dominant when healthy as the centerpiece of the Jazz defense and would have been a mainstay for years to come had the Magic taken him instead.
1. CLEVELAND CAVALIERS – GIANNIS ANTETOKOUNMPO
Yes, I have The Greek Freak as the top overall pick in this redraft, and it’s his elite size, athleticism and length for whatever position you call him that gives him the edge over anyone else. Antetokounmpo fell to Milwaukee at 15th overall (out of the lottery(!)) in the draft due to concerns over competition and lack of bulk, but teams didn’t realize his skill level and overall fluidity would overwhelm even NBA athletes.
It’s a pretty clear-cut choice for me, even in this draft that really lacked much star power. Giannis could take that next step this year into All-Star consideration given the growth he’s already made. I wouldn’t be shocked to see him figure it out soon and future All-Star for years to come.