The 2012 NBA Draft is only hours away and, despite the flurry of rumors we’ve had over the last day, it appears as though very few actual moves are going to go down between now and gametime.
After stealing headlines for two straight days, the Houston Rockets have seemingly fallen quiet ever since their deal with the Milwaukee Bucks went through. Dwight Howard, Pau Gasol, Josh Smith and all of the other guys whose names have been floating around over the last week? It looks like they’ll be staying pat until at least after tonight’s proceedings. The Charlotte Bobcats? Apparently they couldn’t get the offer that they were hoping for in order to part ways with the No. 2 pick.
So, where does all that leave us? Well, here is how things stand as of this very moment: the New Orleans Hornets will take Anthony Davis with the first overall pick. Charlotte will most likely follow that up by selecting Thomas Robinson. Then, the Washington Wizards will most likely nab Bradley Beal.
Beyond that? Who knows. The general consensus seems to be that the Cleveland Cavaliers will take a three – but which three? Harrison Barnes has been a popular pick for the last few weeks, but Michael Kidd-Gilchrist is the better player. And could Dion Waiters perhaps sneak into the mix? That’s the latest rumor.
After that, some combination of Andre Drummond, Damian Lillard, John Henson and Austin Rivers will likely round out the top 10.
And, of course, this is all presuming that no huge, game-changing trades go down between now and the big event. We don’t anticipate that they will, however, we didn’t think that the Oklahoma City Thunder were legitimately considering swapping James Harden for a shot at Beal, either.
Some of the more interesting storylines to watch tonight: who does Cleveland nab at No. 4? How high does Waiters go? Do the Portland Trail Blazers take Lillard with their first or second pick? When do Drummond and Tyler Zeller get picked? Where does Kendall Marshall end up? How far do Perry Jones III and Jared Sullinger fall? Who do the Miami Heat, Thunder and Chicago Bulls end up selecting?
We analyze all those questions and more below in our previews of the entire first round.