Thanks to Mucho Moss and pookey for the inspiration on the following, as this was born out of some of their comments from Original Draft Measurements.
Who would be your top 12 players in this year's draft? Not a mock draft 12, but the top 12 guys that you would take just for the KIngs. It's a pretty good exercise because it shows you who would be left for the Kings if your favorite 11 players were taken off the board. I was encouraged when I did my list, as it appears that the Kings are assured of a player that will have a chance to contribute to this team at some point. (Editor's note – We understand the phrase "a chance to contribute to this team at some point" lacks any level of pizazz or sex appeal. But it is the 12th pick, right?)
In compiling my list, I sort of danced between need and talent. Sometimes those two criteria pair up, sometimes they don't. My top 12 isn't right, but it is my top 12 and I posted first, so n'yah!
1) Derrick Rose I take him just ahead of Beasley because I think he would have a more positive influence on the games of Kevin Martin and Spencer Hawes.
2) Michael Beasley I'd have no problem "settling" for him at #2.
3) Jerryd Bayless Mayo might have been 3rd on my list if were not for Kevin Martin.
4) O.J. Mayo Too much talent to pass on here. Maybe he can become a point guard, maybe not. I'll take him now and worry about it later.
5) Anthony Randolph We won't see much of him this year, unless you intend on spending a lot of time hanging out at the Kings workout facility. But the thought of a bulked up Randolph playing next to Hawes in a couple of years? Mmm, mmm, good.
6) Kevin Love I just can't drop his talent any further down the list, and I (briefly) considered putting him in front of Randolph. He may not be the shot blocker that we're looking for but I think that he could be Carlos Boozer or David West. Would you take Boozer or West to play next to Hawes? I would.
7) Eric Gordon This guy is a 6th man of the year just waiting to happen, and he's the surest thing left on my board.
8) Russell Westbrook I wanted to put Westbrook ahead of Love and Gordon, but that was because we need a point guard, not because he is that point guard. I think he could become a good NBA PG and I would love it if we got him.
9) D.J. Augustin This kid is roughly the size of Chris Paul, and I'm going to go out on a limb and say that CP3 just might make it in the NBA. Though Augustin is not the same talent, he is the guy on this list (exception: Derrick Rose) that would best benefit Martin and Hawes, among others.
10) DeAndre Jordan This is a stupid wish and a prayer pick. With guys like Lopez, Arthur, Alexander and Gallinari still available, the only reason that I would do such a thing is because the monkey that's trying to fly out of my butt thinks that Hawes and Jordan would be an awesome pairing in a couple of years.
11) Brook Lopez He should probably also be higher on my list. Had we not drafted Hawes last year I could have Lopez as high as #4 or #5 on this list. But we do have Hawes, so Lopez gets the #11 slot. I do like him enough over the remaining players to select him here and worry about a potential logjam of playing time later.
12) Darrell Arthur I know that Joe Alexander is racing up the charts and he is a great athlete, but Arthur has shown a little more of that 15 foot and in game, has shown to be effective along the baseline, and he finishes well. His height and reach is not really that much smaller than Carlos Boozer, though Boozer would outweigh him by nearly 40 pounds right now.
And of the guys that just missed:
13) (Tie) Danilo Gallinari and Joe Alexander These guys dropped down here simply because we are sick with wing men right now and it seems to be the easiest position to fill via the draft (Garcia, Martin), trade (Artest), or free agency (Salmons). Think about it. Al Thornton would have seen hardly a whiff of playing time last year had we drafted him (Dahntay Jones minutes, hello!). Why do we not want Gallinari and we were lusting after Yi last year? Needs. That said, if we got to the #12 pick and GP took either one of these guys over Jordan/Lopez/Arthur, you would not have to worry about me jumping off the Burg Dubai.
The Miss Congeniality award is presented to Marreese Speights. If for any reason one of these 14 players should fall off of my list, Mr. Speights will be added to the list.
OK, I've shown you mine. Now it's your turn to show me yours. In honor of the late, great Bo Diddly, who do you love?