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Travis Williams - The Roanoke Sports Examiner
The 2011 Mock/Mocking NBA Draft
By: Travis Williams
Names are funny things and certain names bring an instant image to your mind. This year's NBA Draft is filled with all kinds of ridiculous names, many of which either spark an instant image or make you wonder if the nurses had spelling issues or were attempting to write with those old squiggly pens.
People everywhere are trying to decide where this year's crop are going to go.
, have all taken their shots. But I decided to give a handful of this year's picks the old "sounds like.." test to see where they might go. (Note: I have no idea who actually invented this, but the first place I saw it was in
Chris Colston's Hokie Annual
, which is an amazing Virginia Tech guide, so thank him if you like.)
So here you have the fiction personality each name brings to mind, ranked and with a little tie-in on how it reflects on them as a potential NBA player. Surprisingly, some fit quite well.
1. Derrick Williams, PF, Arizona -- A guy you went to high school with
Every school has a guy like this each year. He peaks his senior year. His face clears up, he starts dating a fairly popular girl, and his college plans start to really materialize. This being said, he never does anything super amazing and will always be that guy who in ten years you say, "Oh yeah, that guy. I bet he's done real well for himself."
He's got a lot of good, a little bit of great, and makes you wondering if there is more to come or if he's peaked. He really raised his stock this past season and if he continues to work, could very well make anyone who over looks him look foolish. The best thing about him is he has a low floor. Worst case, you've drafted a strong contributor off the bench.
2. Kyrie Irving, PG, Duke -- 19th century British scientist
The positives about Dr. Kyrie Irving are that he's extremely creative and you hear he may very well be creating a time machine. The downside though, you've never really seen this time machine. You've heard a lot about it, but you really only have a few flashes from his laboratory window to go on.
This is his draft..or so we are told. We've heard a lot and though we've only seen a little, we are generally impressed. The trailer has been so good and so talked about, it will be hard for Cleveland to turn down buying a ticket to the movie.
3. Enes Kanter, PF, Turkey -- Villain from "Justified"
The good news is that most of the bad guys Raylan Givens encounters have a good side, so he'll be motivated to get nasty for a good cause. The bad news is, most of those guys inexperience in being a villain gets them shot.
Looks and plays like the kind of big man teams want to have as a force inside. Like many bigs though, there are durability issues, especially with his knees.
4. Kemba Walker, PG, UConn -- The host of a part live action-part cartoon children show
Life lessons will be learned though fun activities and the arts. But how long will his teammates be able to stomach is constant rhyming and teaching through songs techniques?
He had a ton of success as a leader in college, but how that translate to the next level will be the difference between him being a good or great pick up.
5. Jonas Valanciunas, PF, Lithuania -- The lovable loser in a teenage romantic comedy
Yup, it's one of those. He'll go all out for what he wants, completely sink his heart into it, but when it comes to sealing the deal, he'll be struggling. There's a good chance he'll end up breaking something, passing out, or throwing up. He'll work well on a team, but the spotlight leaves him with sweat stains.
Likable qualities, runs and rebounds well, but does a good amount of bumbling around when it comes to scoring.
6. Brandon Knight, PG, Kentucky -- The hero of a CW original teen drama involving kids gaining super powers.
Hard to imagine a downside to having super powers or being labeled a hero, so there is a lot of potential with this guy. However the "CW" aspect of him means there is also an equally high potential to end up along side James Van Der Beek in whatever black hole he currently resides in.
Developed the reputation as both a clutch and a streaky guy in college. Tons of potential, but will still be a bit of a project for a team.
7. Bismack Biyombo, PF, Congo -- Friendly hobbit neighbor of Bilbo Baggins
He's a bit unknowns, but if he knows where the ring is, he's worth the pick. If not, all you're getting is hobbit feet. Which are gross.
: There really is a lot unknown about this guy, so it really could be a ring or hobbit feet here.
8. Kawhi Leonard, SF, San Diego St. -- Martial arts film star
If crazy action scenes filled with slow motion fighting, flipping, jumping, and dodging ridiculous amounts of bullets is what you want, then you're in luck. Problem is, sometimes these actors don't transition well into larger pictures. See: Jason Staham.
His physically abilities will let him help right away on the defensive end of the court, but he'll easily be overshadowed on the offensive end.
9. Jan Vesely, SF, Serbia -- Professional surfer
He's a laid back guy, easy going, and will be able to guide his teammates to the best slurpees. Of course we're also unsure if he owns a pair of socks or a Ronald Regan mask. Oh, and those same teammates will need to be extra careful not to ding his board.
Likes to score, hustles a decent amount, but is a little too laid back when it comes to rebounding for a 6-11 guy.
10. Klay Thompson, SF, Washington St. -- The best truck salesman in the valley!
He may not wow you off your feet right away, but he's a solid guy, ready to cut you a solid deal. His teammates will like this about him, but if they are looking for him to wow them outside of the "Tent Sale" week, they'll be a little disappointed.
Doubtful he's going to blow anyone away, but his consistent shooting make him nice to have around.
11. Alec Burks, SG, Colorado -- An up and coming lawyer on (insert random TNT lawyer show here)
He has the flashy techniques of the courtroom down a la Mark-Paul Glossaar - by the way, isn't he on like his third attempted at a TNT lawyer show? - but he's probably going to need some wily old vet to school him in the fundamentals.
: He can slash, but needs to learn to shoot.
12. Nikola Vucevic, C, USC -- The ringleader of a magical circus
Being the ringleader means he has some stage presence. He stands tall and looks intimidating enough in that top hat that the lions and clowns generally obey him. But you always wonder what would happen if they rebelled. Would that little wand really be able to save him from a lion bite or, even worse, a clown bite?
He looks the part of the NBA center, but lacks the athleticism to really be nasty on the inside. Especially at the defensive end.
13. Tristan Thompson, PF, Texas -- Former rodeo star turned cattle rancher
He may not have had the finesse to ride on the circuit, but he's a worker and cooks a nice brisket.
Blue collar guy, looking for a place to do work.
14. Markiff Morris, PF, Kansas -- Owner/Operator of Markiff's Car Detailing and Winery
He's a creative guy, who doesn't miss opportunities to cash in. What better to do than a little wine tasting while you get that gunk in cracks of your coin holder removed?
Does good work in the paint, though scouts worry he may have tapped out his potential to face up and create his own shots. His stock is high, so it's a good time for him to go.
15. Chris Singleton, SF/PF, FSU -- Opening act at a country music concert
Puts on a decent high-tempo show. Fireworks. Big hats. Sleeveless shirts. Even mixes in a classic every now and then. But we're still wondering if he could really hold a tour of his own, or if he'll spend his career getting crowds ready to Save a Horse and Ride a Cowboy.
Does the blue collar stuff without the ball well, but lacks the touch and shot to be a 10 and 10 guy.
16. Jimmer Fredette, PG, BYU -- Fishing lure expert, who created "The Jimmer"
He really does make something as hard as making a fishing lure, look easy. "The Jimmer" has really looked great sitting on the shelf at the local bait shops in Utah, but how's it going to compare hanging up next to all the other lures in the big box stores?
Best case: Steve Nash. Worst case: J.J. Redick.
17. Jordan Hamilton, SG/SF, Texas -- Investment banker
If it's your money, he knows exactly how to maximize it! Just give him a chance to make some moves with your dough and you'll soon see!
Good shooter. Does well getting open without the ball, but if you give it to him, don't expect it back. He's most likely putting it up.
18. Donatas Motiejunas, PF, Lithuania -- Explorer originally credited with finding the fountain of youth
This later turned out to just be tribal attempt at indoor plumbing. He wants to be the best, but sometimes lacks on that whole background work aspect of the search.
Nice scorer, but yet another Euro who lacks the down and dirty nature required of NBA big men.
19. Marshon Brooks, SG, Providence -- Author of controversial religious fiction novels
They are creative. They are addictive. They are mysterious. But there is just something about the Pope going on an adventure to find the original blue prints for Touchdown Jesus with a long-haul truck driver named Rowdy that seems icky to a lot of folks.
Dude can score, which is a good thing, unless it is at the expense of his teammates. Most likely it won't get to the point of frustrating folks in the NBA, but it will leave them asking, "So, if you aren't scoring, what else exactly do you do?"
20. Kenneth Faried, PF, Morehead St. -- Documentary host
Join Kenneth as he takes you through the wild world of bees, exploring the tides of South Carolina, or ponders the question: "Is there anything really wondrous about Wonder Bread?" Sure, statistically only six people watch this, but that doesn't stop Kenneth from grinding it out, show after show.
Lacks the traditional size and touch of a successful NBA big man, but has no fear about doing the dirty work, getting inside and fighting for loose balls.
21. Tobias Harris, SF/PF, Tennessee -- Infomercial pitchman
Whether it's the perfect push up, a robot vacuum, or one of those magnetic bracelet things, Tobias will sell you on it! Ways to plant tomatoes? Done. Need a last minute cocktail? He's got you! Tired of bending over to put on your shoes? Tobias has just what you need!
Needs time to develop and find his identity as a pro ball player, but has the skill set to help out a team off the bench right away.
22. Jeremy Tyler, PF, San Degio High -- Drummer in a pop punk band
He's musically gifted, but like a lot of musicians, he's a little nutty at times. Yeah, part of that is just the band life. Living on the road. Trashing hotels. Eating gas station sandwiches. But when you get the point where you kind of smell like a onion in a hobo's armpit, you might want to check yourself.
Nice NBA body and has shown a ton of potential, but the of him turning out to be a head case bothers a lot of folks. He did skip his senior year of high school to go play ball overseas, a questionable decision at best.
23. Marcus Morris, SF/PF, Kansas -- Mayoral Candidate
He knows how to get things done, or so his signs say. The "Morris Makes More" campaign seems like a hit. Morris makes more jobs, more schools, more trash cans at the park, more sense! But will he really be strong enough to come through with all this?
He's a good scorer with some decent post moves, but currently doesn't have the ability to rebound or block shots that would make him an all-around stud.
24. Tyler Honeycutt, SF, UCLA -- Professional Soccer player
You made fun of him for playing hacky sack at lunch, and then he goes and makes a living off it.
Athletically gifted kid who folks are worried doesn't weigh enough and therefore isn't strong enough to be super productive at the next level.
25. Josh Selby, PG, Kansas -- Import car modifier
This is the guy in your neighborhood who you always hear revving a motor at 2 a.m. He's a hard worker, when it's something he cares about. Hence him staying up all night working on his ride and then falling asleep on his day job at that sketchy drive-thur coffee stand.
: Seems to need to be taken under someone's wing at the next level. His shooting inconsistencies and defense are major concerns.
26. Reggie Jackson, PG/SG, Boston College -- Owner/Operator of the mustache accessories store in the mall.
His slogan is: "Any guy can grow one, but it takes a man to groom one!"
NBA Translation: *
There really isn't much of a tie in with the mustache store here, I just think of 70s mustaches when I hear the name.
He is however a long, athletic guard, who probably won't start at the point at the pro level, but could easily be used to frustrate opponents on the defensive end.
27. Kyle Singler, SF, Duke -- Podiatrist
He's a smart dude because everyone has feet and most people's hurt a good amount of the time. He'll be able to help teammates out by pinpointing their arch issues, but at the same time may recommend the expensive insoles that just seem like a little too much.
A good player who knows how to win and has a high basketball IQ. He faces the same hurdle every non-super athletic Dukie does though, is he really good or just a product of Coach K?
28. Iman Shumpert, PG/SG, Georgia Tech -- A musically gifted muppet
I'm pretty sure he plays the saxophone in that muppet band where Ralph plays the piano and Animal is on the drums. He's not too shabby on the sax, but occasionally goes Kenny G on everyone with an unannounced solo.
Great athlete with great skills, but maturity and shot selection hurt him.
29. Davis Bertans, SF, Latvia -- Men's Fashion Consultant
He's young, he's hip, and he's got a sharp eye for deciding if you socks are navy or black.
He's a 6-10 sharp shooter who may or may not be athletic enough to keep up with the NBA game. He'll need some work, but could prove to be a dangerous weapon.
30. Shelvin Mack, PF, Butler -- 1986 Arm Wrestling Champ
He's no Lincoln Hawk, but he's a gritty kid who stays composed under the bright lights of local truck stops and is willing to go all out and work for the title.
Good, not great athlete who is heady and has a good shot when he's open. He'll need some time to get his legs under him at the point, but could prove to be very valuable once he does.
And there you have the top 30 picks in the 2011 NBA Draft. Enjoy!
Feel free to drop me a line anytime: firstname.lastname@example.org
or Tweet me:
Wed, Jun 22, 2011 at 4:40 PM
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