Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Final Predictions For The Bucks Heading Into The NBA Draft

We are just about twenty-four hours away from the 2013 NBA Draft getting underway from the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. Many rumors have surfaced regarding the Bucks as well as a few names that have been associated with the Bucks 15th overall pick. I'll go over what is true, false, and what to take with a grain of salt. I'm also going to give you some insight on what to expect tomorrow from the Milwaukee Bucks on who we are likely to draft with each pick Here we go.

First, I want to tackle the rumors for everyone.

"The Bucks are interested in acquiring small forward Paul Pierce from the Celtics." 

GRAIN OF SALT - The rumor is true as it's been confirmed by multiple sources. However, this is pretty simple to debunk to show why it won't happen. Unless the Celtics throw in Rajon Rondo too, this isn't happening. Although we all know the Bucks love acquiring guys past their prime, there is no way they are in a position to take on Paul's contract. He would be a great veteran to have, but there are better small forwards that are free agents if we really want one. (Not to mention we can draft one, too). The nostalgia is cool, but it's not a move the Bucks should make if they want to rebuild. They have bigger issues at hand this offseason, like who will be in the backcourt for example, than worry about a veteran presence.

"The Pacers are looking to deal small forward Danny Granger to the Bucks in a sign/trade for point guard Brandon Jennings."

TRUE - The Pacers are/were really serious about getting Brandon Jennings. It's been documented by many NBA analysts, including Sam Amico from Fox Sports Ohio, that the Pacers are extremely interested in trading for Brandon Jennings from the Milwaukee Bucks.

However, now the Pacers instead want to Bucks to sign and trade Monta Ellis instead. Darren Wolfson of 1500 ESPN asked an NBA executive for some names that are hot-and-heavy in trade talks. The names he got back were the Pacers' Danny Granger, the Bucks' Monta Ellis (sign and trade).

Whether it's Jennings or Ellis, in return the Pacers would send small forward Danny Granger. Granger was a bit banged up last year and didn't play at all, really. He's a great shooter who the Bucks should seriously look at. The Pacers have Paul George now, which makes Granger very expendable. The Bucks will be careful here, however. They obviously won't trade for him if they don't feel he's healthy, especially for Brandon Jennings.

"The Bobcats have placed Michael Kidd-Gilchrist on the trading block. The Bucks have expressed interest in him."

FALSE - Charlotte Bobcats GM Rich Cho denied that the team is shopping former No. 2 overall pick Michael Kidd-Gilchrist during a radio interview. 

"No! We're not shopping him,'' Cho said on WFNZ-AM 610. "We get calls about all our players. It's my job to take calls. We're not shopping MKG.''

Cho said, "all the teams that are listed in the report are 100 percent false,'' adding "We still like Kidd-Gilchrist. We think he had a good year.''

The Bucks would have had to give up Larry Sanders, according to the report which made me scratch my head right away. I'd love MKG, but not for Sanders.

"The Bucks have interest in shooting guard J.R. Smith"

TRUE, BUT GRAIN OF SALT - God I really hope this doesn't happen. This is such a Hammond thing to do, though. If you thought Stephen Jackson was a cancer in the locker room, just wait for J.R. Smith if he comes to Milwaukee.

Those are all of the rumors I've heard of. Let's quickly move onto the draft.

Final Draft Predictions:

Pick 15 - UCLA SF Shabazz Muhammad - Shabazz is going to fall, and I feel the Bucks will bite the bullet and draft him. Contrary to the media outlets questioning Shabazz, I don't feel there is anything to worry about. Off the court he has some issues with his father, but that's about it. If he's on the board, the Bucks need to risk it can take him strictly on value. Maybe they look to trade him during the draft. They've been known to do that. Bottom line, the Bucks need depth a small forward if they don't pull off a trade for one after trading away Tobias Harris last season. Shabazz would be a steal at #15.

Pick 43 - Texas PG Myck Kabongo - He's considered one of the best pure point guards in the draft, and I would rank him as a Top 5 overall point guard in the draft. He was originally considered a lottery pick, but some issues at school caused his draft stock to drop. He's got way more pros than cons, that's for sure. His only downside is his size and the NCAA sanctions that kept him from playing last year. He's got great speed, he's a great passer, and great vision of the court. He rarely converts turnovers. The Bucks need depth at point guard considering they may not have a single one they had from last year. Kabongo sounds like a second round steal for me.

Until next time, Beers, Brats, and Championships.

- Andrew Vrchota (@AndrewVrchota)

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