Breitbart Sports NBA Draft Preview

Breitbart Sports NBA Draft Preview

The NBA Draft has a more dramatic impact on teams than any other draft. The Cleveland Cavaliers more than doubled their wins the year after picking LeBron James with the top pick, and this year have the top pick again and hope not to make the mistake the Portland Trailblazers did in the 2007 NBA Draft when they took the 24th best Value Add player in the country (Greg Oden) over the best Value Add player (Kevin Durant). All-Star Roy Hibbert was No. 2 in Value Add that season and blocked more shots this year (206) than Oden did in his career (117). As the table shows, the Trailblazers also could have picked Mike Conley, Jeff Green or Al Horford, who have all scored 5000+ points in the NBA:

College Rank 2007 Value Add Draft NBA Pt NBA Reb NBA Blk NBA College
1 Durant, Kevin 2 12258 3153 470 OKC Texas
2 Hibbert, Roy (2008 Draft) 17 4236 2545 683 Ind Georgetown
4 Conley, Mike 4 5415 1234 75 Mem Ohio St.
13 Green, Jeff 5 5401 2066 259 Bos Georgetown
20 Horford, Al 3 5345 3760 434 Atl Florida
24 Oden, Greg 1 773 602 117 Por Ohio St.

Despite being behind only Durant in 2007 Value Add, no one seemed to believe Hibbert was that good, so he stayed in college for another year and then was picked 17th in 2008. This year Charles Barkley declared he was the best big man in the NBA after he dominated the Miami Heat.

The top two Value Add players this year, Michigan’s Trey Burke and Georgetown’s Otto Porter, are expected to be two of the top seven players drafted, but the odds are the Cavs look at the upside of Kansas’ Ben McLemore or gamble on a full recovery of Nerlens Noel after his brutal injury in Kentucky’s loss to Florida this year. Indiana’s duo of Cody Zeller and Victor Oladipo are also in the mix along with Anthony Bennett of UNLV.

The following are the Top 20 Value Add players in 2013 and where they are expected to go in the draft, according to Draft Express. Of course not all great college players have the physical ability to play in the NBA. The only two Top 20 Value Add players who are not predicted to go in the draft are also the only two players on the list shorter than 6-foot-3 (Shabazz Napier of Connecticut and Bryce Cotton of Providence, both 6-foot-1 and not physically strong by NBA standards).

Value Add Player Draft? Team
1 Burke, Trey 7 Michigan
2 Porter, Otto 3 Georgetown
3 Green, Erick 31 Virginia Tech
4 Oladipo, Victor 5 Indiana
5 Zeller, Cody 11 Indiana
6 Caldwell-Pope, Kentavious 19 Georgia
7 Napier, Shabazz No Connecticut
8 Plumlee, Mason 17 Duke
9 Muscala, Mike 36 Bucknell
10 Wolters, Nate 40 South Dakota St.
11 Cotton, Bryce No Providence
12 Smith, Russ 2014 Louisville
13 Carter-Williams, Michael 13 Syracuse
14 McDermott, Doug 2014 Creighton
15 Olynyk, Kelly 12 Gonzaga
16 Withey, Jeff 28 Kansas
17 Smart, Marcus 2014 Oklahoma St.
18 Dinwiddie, Spencer 2014 Colorado
19 McCallum, Ray 47 Detroit
20 McLemore, Ben 2 Kansas

In the next three weeks, Breitbart Sports will look at the other factors that predict the future performance of college players. In addition to Value Add, physical combine results, specific stats that show the type of player that will be successful in the NBA, and the age of the player when he enters the draft are among other key factors.