2012 NBA Draft Winners and Losers: Team-by-Team Grades

In our podcast, James listed Anthony Davis as a 100% star. Arturo says he’s the most important player since Tim Duncan. Really, the key part of this pick was lucking into the #1. Not often does a team lose a star like Chris Paul and get an immediate replacement. Good job New Orleans. Now don’t mess up and pick a bad player with the #10 pick. (This pick gets an A+)

#2 Charlotte Bobcats select Michael Kidd-Gilchrist

  • Grade: B

Not a great pick, but at least one Arturo would pick up. We give Charlotte a B because they avoided the self-suicide move of Harrison Barnes. We’ll be seeing him soon I’m sure.

#3 The Washington Wizards select Bradley Beal

  • Grade: B+

An easy pick for Arturo’s model. Washington definitely improves from the Nick Young era. We’ve already complimented the Wizards once this offseason. They get even more Kudos now!

#4 Cleveland Cavaliers select Dion Waiters

  • Grade: B-

Odd for Shooting Guards to be so popular so quickly. Like Charlotte Waiters is graded on a curve, for avoiding the Barnes bullet. He won’t help Kyrie Irving that much, but thankfully he won’t tank the Cavs either.

#5 Sacramento Kings select Thomas Robinson

  • Grade: B

Finally a team other than New Orleans realizes the value of a big. Again, the get bonus points for avoiding some of the land mines. He’s a solid big that will bring good rebounding.

#6 Portland Trail Blazers select Damian Lillard

  • Grade: A-

Three of the top six picks following Arturo’s order? Crazy! He was a fantastic college player, unstoppable scorer, but poor passer which is a red flag. Portland is looking to help turn around after they noise dived themselves last season.

#7 Golden State Warriors select Harrison Barnes

  • Grade: F

Epic fail! I’m disappointed in the new management for the Warriors. He was the worst land mine of the draft according to James. He’s another inefficient scorer, which is what the Warriors just tried to get rid of with Monta Ellis.

#8 Toronto Raptors select Terrence Ross

  • Grade: C+

Well, it could have been worse. That said the Raptors selected a slightly above average two-guard. If this means less time for DeMar DeRozan, it could work out alright.

#9 Detroit Pistons select Andre Drummond

  • Grade: D+

A highly overrated player. He’s decent on the offensive glass and blocks. He’s below average at everything else. He’s young and tall, so he could improve, but the numbers aren’t on his side. In depth analysis from Ben over at Pistons by the Numbers on this pick!

#10 New Orleans Hornets select Austin Rivers

  • Grade: F-

Worst pick of the draft! He is good at nothing. After an amazing pick in Anthony Davis, this pick is almost enough to cancel it out. For anyone that wants to claim New Orleans had a plan going into the draft, the truth is they clearly had way more luck than skill.

#11 Portland Trail Blazers select Meyers Leonard

  • Grade: D

Slightly above average and tall. He’s also older so it’s questionable if he’ll ever get good. The Blazers have had a lot of talented bigs with injury problems. They’re trying a new direction with a non-talented big that’s at least healthy (we think)

#12 Houston Rockets select Jeremy Lamb

  • Grade: C-

Another shooting guard? He’s not a bad shooter but his assist to turnover is ridiculously high. He’s an average draft pick, which certainly isn’t worth the cost of a talented center.

#13 Phoenix Suns select Kendall Marshall

  • Grade: C-

Again, not a terrible pick. He was above average. His shooting is good, his assists are nice. His turnovers are bit high and he can’t rebound (even for a PG). That said, he won’t be replacing Steve Nash any time soon.

#14 Milwaukee Bucks select John Henson

  • Grade:B

Wow they got Samuel Dalembert AND a better pick than Houston with their trade? We get back to a player that Arturo’s models would actually pick. His shooting isn’t so hot but his rebounding and blocks are great.

#15 Philadelphia 76ers select Maurice Harkless

    • Grade:C

Some speculation is that this means the 76ers will trade Andre Igoudala. If that’s the case then I’ll retroactively make this a worse grade. His shooting isn’t that great. His rebounding and steals are OK. If that’s what the 76ers want then they have someone much better at all of these — Iggy.

#16 Houston Rockets select Royce White

  • Grade:C-

His scoring is alright and so are his rebounds. His turnovers and free throw shooting are major red flags. So far this draft the Rockets have majorly downgraded their team and they didn’t even make the playoffs last season.

#17 Dallas Mavericks select Tyler Zeller

  • Grade:B

His numbers are actually quite good. The real problem is his age. At twenty-two years old and seven feet he should be beating up on college players. Thank goodness the Mavericks realized the need for a decent big. He’s no Tyson Chandler though.

#18 Houston Rockets select Terence Jones

  • Grade: C

He’s been average his first two years in college. His shooting isn’t great and neither is his rebounding. The Rockets picks have been underwhelming and not of the “Moneyball” variety you’d expect from a supposedly stat heavy organization.

#19 Orlando Magic select Andrew Nicholson

  • Grade: B

The Magic pick up a good big. His college numbers are pretty good. The only problem is he’s a bit older, meaning his numbers might be a bit high. The Magic certainly realize the value of talented bigs, at least acquiring them. Keeping them is another story.

#20 Denver Nuggets select Evan Fournier

  • Grade: F

What the heck happened Denver? Two years in a row they picked good stats picks. With Will Barton on the board they selected Evan Fournier?? They picked a player with terrible numbers from France! I was so excited with Barton on the board and this was just depressing.

#21 Boston Celtics select Jared Sullinger

  • Grade: A

The best big left in the draft other than Mosley. Did the Nuggets really pick Fournier with Barton still on the board? Did that really just happen? Are you kidding?? Oh yeah, Sullinger. Good pick. Boston gets a young big to help phase out Garnett. He may have injury issues but his contract is so cheap and only guaranteed for two years so excellent pick up.

#22 Boston Celtics select Fab Melo

  • Grade: D

His rebounding is terrible and while he does block shots, his fouls are high. He’s way overrated. He’s a surprising pick after such a great pick up in Sullinger. Of course he’s better than Fournier! Seriously, Fournier?? (Ok, I’m done with yelling at Denver…for now)

#23 Atlanta Hawks select John Jenkins

  • Grade: B-

Jenkins is a great scorer. His shooting percentages are sky high. Not a terrible pickup by the Hawks. He’s still not the top shooting guard available but he’s a good use of a late pick.

#24 Cleveland Cavaliers select Jared Cunningham

  • Grade: D+

In theory this pick belongs to the Mavericks. They traded Zeller for three picks. Had they picked up Barton that move would have been stellar. Instead they picked a player with high turnovers, low rebounds. But hey his steals and scoring are decent, which as we know are what get you drafted.

#25 Memphis Grizzlies select Tony Wroten Jr.

  • Grade: F

Wow, his assists are terrible. What’s worse, his turnovers are worse than his assists. This team has Mike Conley on it. So I have no idea what they’re doing. Do they want a worse replacement for O.J. Mayo or something?

#26 Indiana Pacers select Miles Plumlee

  • Grade: B

His numbers are quite good. Again, his issue is he’s a senior so his age should make you give a handicap on some of his numbers. Still, picking a tall center with good numbers is a solid play. That is, unless they trade him to San Antonio for DuJuan Blair or something.

#27 Miami Heat select Arnett Moultrie

  • Grade: B

His numbers are pretty good. Miami is flipping him for a second round pick and a future first round pick. Good move either way.

#28 Oklahoma City Thunder select Perry Jones

  • Grade: D+

He runs the floor like a deer apparently. That means he is capable of getting hit by cars (thanks wiLQ!) and eating out of your garbage can. He can’t score well or rebound well, which you know is kind of important for a big man.

#29 Chicago Bulls select Marquis Teague

  • Grade: F

I’m impressed that Chicago has managed to have two off-seasons in a row where they’ve made terrible picks. Teague’s numbers are terrible. He can’t shoot, pass or rebound. Oh and his turnovers are high and his steals are low. I’d figure Derrick Rose would teach the Bulls about point guards. I guess not.

#30 Golden State Warriors Festus Ezeli

  • Grade: F

Well Golden State, you had the best value pick in the draft and you wasted it. Fouls and turnovers are terrible and his rebounds aren’t that great. He’s also old, so his upside is limited. I see your plan for your big men next season is hope. That’s not a plan!

Get more great NBA analysis over at Wages of Wins Journal.