2013 NBA Draft: The San Antonio Spurs Potential Draftees Bible
May 10, 2013; Oakland, CA, USA; San Antonio Spurs president of sports franchises R.C. Buford (left) and Golden State Warriors general manager Bob Myers (right) talk before game three of the second round of the 2013 NBA Playoffs at Oracle Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports
On Thursday, June 27th, 60 young men will see their dream of being selected in the NBA Draft become a reality. Some guys may become superstars, some may be labeled busts, some may stay overseas or never actually make it to the NBA. But at least they will forever have the honor of being selected to the NBA.
For the San Antonio Spurs…well, let’s be honest. We have no clue. Correctly predicting who the Spurs are going to draft, ranks up there with winning the lottery or hitting a walk-off home run in Game 7 of the World Series, on the difficulty scale. But that won’t stop us from making an educated guess!
Everyone’s seen the mock drafts and projections of who may fall or whose stalk is rising. But instead of writing another copycat post, we’ve decided to bring you all the potential prospects on one article. Nearly every guy the Spurs have worked out is on here. If the Spurs are rumored to be looking at this player, he’s on here. If we’ve seen mock drafts from credible writers, and they have the Spurs picking Player X from Any USA University, he’s on here too. We scoured the internet for information, so you don’t have to. And it’s all right here. Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls. We introduce to you the 2013 NBA Draft Spurs Bible of Potential Draftees.
We’ve got plenty of guys to sift through, so we’re utilizing the slideshow feature for this one. Use the left and right arrow keys to go through each page.
Mar 16, 2013; New York, NY, USA; Syracuse Orange forward James Southerland (43) reacts on the court as fans cheer behind him against the Louisville Cardinals during the championship game of the Big East tournament at Madison Square Garden. Louisville won 78-61. Mandatory Credit: Debby Wong-USA TODAY Sports
James Southerland, Forward, Syracuse: 6’8″, 221 pounds Assuming the Spurs resign Ginobili and Splitter, one of the Spurs biggest needs is a wing player off the bench to backup Kawhi Leonard. Enter small forward James Southerland. You can never have enough shooters on the floor, and in the playoffs the Spurs bench lineup proved to have trouble scoring without any of the “big three” on the court.
Southerland is a great shooter, who admits his defense and ball handling need improvement. Interesting enough in his Draft Express interview, he mentions how the Spurs have utilized great shooters like Danny Green, Manu Ginobili, Tony Parker and Matt Bonner.
Here’s what DraftExpress has to say about his game:
While Southerland is predominantly a three-point shooting specialist, he also shows flashes of a mid-range game, being comfortable spotting up or coming off screens for spot-up jumpers from really anywhere on the floor, from free-throw line extended to even the mid post. While this probably isn’t something that could develop into a staple for him, it does give him some versatility and provides offenses with a safety valve option late in the shot clock.
The rest of Southerland’s offensive game is not featured often, with off-ball cuts to the basket being the most noteworthy of his non-shooting skills. Southerland actually does a good job finishing with power in these situations, not being afraid to go up hard for strong finishes, which allows him to be a good finisher overall in these situations. He shows decent ability both in the half court and in transition, though without anything in the line of ball-handling skills, he’s very limited in this regard. Just 8.5% of Southerland’s offense comes in isolation or pick and roll situations, and not a single one of those possessions resulted in a shot at the basket, highlighting just how reliant he is on his jump-shot for offense.
On the defensive end, as is the case with most Syracuse players (especially forwards), it’s incredibly difficult to glean much of anything in regards to Southerland’s ability to defend at an NBA level due to the Orange’s strict 3-2 zone. On the positive side, Southerland played nearly 30 minutes per game for the country’s fifth best defense according to kenpom.com, and is an active and attentive player in their scheme. On the other hand, however, he’s rarely tested in isolation situations in the perimeter or on the low block, and it’s questionable whether he has the lateral quickness to guard NBA 3’s or the size and strength to guard NBA 4’s, likely leaving him without an ideal position on the defensive end.
Southerland is a projected late second round pick, via the Washington Post.
Nov 18, 2012; Charleston, SC, USA; Murray State Racers guard Isaiah Canaan (3) reacts after the play during the second half of the Charleston Classic Championship game against the Colorado Buffaloes at TD Arena. Buffaloes won 81-74. Mandatory Credit: Joshua S. Kelly-USA TODAY Sports
Isaiah Canaan, Guard, Murray State; 6’0″, 188 pounds I don’t know much about Canaan, besides the fact that he’s an excellent scoring point guard. He worked out for the Spurs and is a projected late first round pick, but more likely to be an early second rounder. Canaan has been compared to last years Rookie of the Year winner, Damian Lillard, because of his mid-major success.
Canaan is a strong, aggressive scoring point guard who put up big numbers in college … He’s a deadly outside shooter who shot 42% on 3-pointers during his college career … He’s one of the best shooters off the dribble in this draft class, thanks to his quick release … Canaan is also very proficient on the catch-and-shoot, which will help him in the NBA when he isn’t handling the ball as often as he did in college… A pesky perimeter defender, Canaan is able to harass opposing point guards into losing their handle on the ball, leading to an easy break the other way … Attacks the basket with assertiveness, combining with his bulk to make him very difficult to slow down … Good wingspan (6’4.5″) will help him compensate for his lack of height.
Mar 27, 2013; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes forward Deshaun Thomas (1) addresses the media in a press conference during practice the day before the semifinals of the West regional of the 2013 NCAA tournament at the Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports
Deshaun Thomas, Forward, Ohio State: 6’7″, 220 pounds If you remember, Deshaun Thomas famously declined to give the Spurs his phone numberwhen asked, saying they could have it if he was guaranteed to be selected. Not a good start, kid. And it’s attitude like that, that assures me the Spurs won’t draft him, no matter how good of a fit he may be.
Here’s his draft profile from DraftExpress:
In projecting Thomas to the next level, it is worth nothing that the complementary role he played as a sophomore is likely a better reflection of what he’ll be asked to do at the next level than the one he’s played this year. His jump shot will help him spread the floor while his scoring instincts and ability to exploit mismatches on the block give him upside as a diverse offensive roleplayer.
The main question regarding Thomas’s NBA potential is what position he can defend effectively. His versatile offensive game affords him some flexibility on that end of the floor, but his lack of footspeed for a three, size and length for a four, and overall consistency on the defensive end are troubling…
Another concern revolves around his lackluster rebounding production, particularly on the defensive end, where he ranks dead last at his position amongst top-100 power forwards.
Thomas is a projected second round pick.
May 16, 2013; Chicago, IL, USA; Glen Rice Jr is interviewed during the NBA Draft combine at Harrison Street Athletics Facility. Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports
Glen Rice, Jr., Guard, Georgia Tech/Rio Grande Valley Vipers: 6’6″, 211 pounds The son of NBA legend Glen Rice made news this past year for all the wrong reasons, by getting himself kicked off the Georgia Tech basketball team. But instead of waiting around for the draft, Rice took his talents to the D-League, where he averaged 25 points and nearly 10 rebounds in the playoffs, leading the Valley Vipers to a championship.
Rice is another great shooter, just like his father, with great athleticism and strength, but of course his game is limited and there are questions about his maturity.
Talented & aggressive wing … Good ISO game. Plays better with the ball in his hands … Runs the floor well providing great spacing and making highlight plays … A strong leaper, particularly off of two feet … Huge wingspan. Appears to have in the neighborhood of a 6-10 wingspan, giving him good length to finish plays … Brings energy to a team with his dynamic plays in traffic … Will get to the rim and finish strong with contact, uses his long arms and leaping ability to get in the lane and crash the glass, an excellent rebounder at his size…Poor P&R ball handler & poor shot selection, which is one of his biggest weaknesses … A very streaky shooter, and not physical or strong enough to defend in the post, needs to work on lateral foot speed, fundamentals in sliding his feet on defense
Rice, Jr. is a projected late first round pick, in multiple mock drafts.
May 16, 2013; Chicago, IL, USA; Erick Green is interviewed during the NBA Draft combine at Harrison Street Athletics Facility. Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports
Erick Green, Guard, Virginia Tech: 6’3″, 178 pounds I don’t know much about Erick Green, besides the fact that he’s a hybrid/combo guard, similar to George Hill. The reason he’s on this list, is because of the news out of NBADraft.net that the Spurs had already promised Green their first round pick.
Sources have indicated Spurs may have a promise with Erick Green at 28. #draftrumor
— NBADraft.net (@nbadraftnet) June 26, 2013
DraftExpress breaks down his game for us:
As a floor general, Green is at his best as a distributor in transition or on the pick and roll, where his speed, high basketball IQ, elite pull-up jump-shot and aggressive mentality allow him to put constant pressure on the defense. Though he is more comfortable looking for his own shot, and isn’t a dynamic playmaker off the bounce, he is quite unselfish and shows good vision and a high basketball IQ running the pick and roll or handling the constant swarm of defenders usually thrown at him. A capable defender at the college level, Green plays with good intensity and fundamentals, but his lack of size and strength raise some concerns about his ability to defend opposing guards at the next level. He’ll likely need to be matched up with opposing point guards to be most effective in the NBA…
Green mentioned he’s a projected late first, early second round pick.
Apr 8, 2013; Atlanta, GA, USA; Michigan Wolverines guard Tim Hardaway Jr. (10) talks to the media in the locker room after losing to the Louisville Cardinals in the championship game in the 2013 NCAA mens Final Four at the Georgia Dome. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports
Tim Hardaway, Jr., Guard, Michigan: 6’6″, 185 pounds Another son of an NBA legend, Tim Hardaway, Jr. was a standout shooting guard at Michigan, who led the Wolverines all the way to the National Championship game with teammates Trey Burke and Glenn Robinson III. Hardaway is just like his father; an athletic guard with a great shooting stroke. Hardaway’s profile via DraftExpress:
Most of his offense this season came in spot-up situations, with catch and shoot jump shots accounting for nearly 40% of his field goal attempts in the half court according to Synergy Sports Technology. Getting great elevation on his jumper and shooting the ball with fluid mechanics, Hardaway made 44% of his unguarded spot-up shots in 2013. Though he made just 31.5% of his pull-up jump shots as a junior, Hardaway has proven that he can also use his dribble to find open space and score off the bounce from the perimeter… Defensively, Hardaway has the tools to be an effective pro. He lacks great length, possessing only a 6’7 wingspan, and won’t create many turnovers, but his 6’6 near-200 pound frame, coupled with his very good overall athleticism and competitiveness, give him plenty of promise as a capable NBA player on this end of the floor.
Hardaway is a projected mid to late first round pick.
Apr 8, 2013; Atlanta, GA, USA; Louisville Cardinals center Gorgui Dieng cuts down the net after Louisville won the championship game in the 2013 NCAA mens Final Four against the Michigan Wolverines at the Georgia Dome. Louisville Cardinals won 82-76. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports
Gorgui Dieng, Center, Louisville: 6’11”, 230 pounds Dieng was the leader of the best defense in the country at Louisville, averaging more than 3 blocks a game, while patrolling the paint for the Cardinals. His offensive game is all over the place, and lacks consistency. Plus, at 23, his game won’t develop as much as some would hope. His player profile from DraftExpress has more:
On the offensive end, Dieng’s game is still a work in progress, and some of his numbers actually took a step back this season in response to his larger workload. Dieng is at his best offensively in the pick-and-roll game, where his great size and excellent mobility often allow him to get open with a head of steam going to the basket. He finishes with authority and is continually improving here, something that will certainly be attractive projecting to the highly pick-and-roll oriented NBA. His combination of defense, rebounding, and pick-and-roll prowess already make him an intriguing prospect from an NBA perspective, though he can certainly take his game to the next level by continuing to get stronger, developing a reliable mid-range jumper, or becoming a more consistent finisher around the basket, all of which is well within his reach.
Dieng could be drafted anywhere from mid-first round to early second round.
Feb 14, 2013; Boulder, CO, USA; Arizona Wildcats forward Grant Jerrett (33) looks up at the jumbo torn in the first half of the game against the Colorado Buffaloes at the Coors Events Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports
Grant Jerrett, Forward, Arizona: 6’10”, 232 pounds Jerrett is a projected mid-to-late second round pick. Via DraftExpress:
At this stage, Jerrett is as raw as they come on the offensive end of the floor, possessing only one but very much in demand NBA-caliber skill. He has been compared to players such as Ryan Anderson and Channing Frye in the past, but both of these players were far more advanced at 19 (turning 20 in July), in terms of productivity, versatility, and efficiency – and were sophomores in college. On the defensive end of the floor, Jerrett lacks the lateral quickness to stay in front of skilled big men. Additionally, while he hedges hard guarding the pick and roll, he often struggles to get back into position. That being said, in both instances, he uses his length to stay involved, trailing the play, and is often able to contest the shot from behind once his man takes the ball to the hoop.
Dec 1, 2012; Louisville, KY, USA; Illinois State Redbirds head coach Dan Muller talks with forward Jackie Carmichael (32) during the second half against the Louisville Cardinals at the KFC Yum! Center. Louisville defeated Illinois State 69-66. Mandatory Credit: Jamie Rhodes-USA TODAY Sports
Jackie Carmichael, Forward, Illinois State: 6’9″, 241 pounds DraftExpress Profile:
Carmichael is a very good finisher around the basket, with excellent touch, soft hands, and solid athleticism— converting 66% of his attempts around the rim in the half-court. Besides showing itself in cuts to the basket and offensive rebounds, this also manifests on pick and rolls, where he dives hard to the basket and does a good job of finishing. This pick and roll game is perhaps a glimpse of his future role, as it should be relatively easy to incorporate this skill set into an offense. He is a solid defender at the collegiate level, even though he mainly guards opposing centers. His lateral quickness is only about average for his size, but he does a good job of staying involved in plays even after he gets beaten. He has also maintained his reputation as a solid shot blocker, rejecting two shots per 40 minutes pace adjusted.
Carmichael is a projected second round pick.
May 16, 2013; Chicago, IL, USA; Rudy Gobert is interviewed during the NBA Draft combine at Harrison Street Athletics Facility. Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports
Rudy Gobert, Center, France: 7’2″, 238 pounds He’s young, he’s French and he’s extremely tall. Sounds perfect for the Spurs, no? Via DraftExpress:
Gobert is a fairly limited player if unable to simply catch and finish around the basket. He doesn’t show a very high skill-level with his back to the basket, not having the lower body strength needed to establish great position inside or a terribly diverse arsenal of footwork or post moves he can go to when his initial move is cut off. Where Gobert really shines is on the defensive end, showing the potential to be an absolute game-changer with his terrific combination of size, length and instincts. He changes everything inside the paint and is near impossible to shoot over both in man to man defender and rotating over the weakside…
Gobert is a projected first round pick, and a possible ‘draft-and-stash’ candidate. Here are some other potential Spurs draft picks: Livio Jean-Charles, Forward, France: 6’9″, 217 pounds Jean-Charles is only 19 and a projected second round pick, with his stock rising rapidly. Plus he plays for the French club that Tony Parker owns a small piece of.
Livio Jean-Charles moved into my first round this week. I’m hearing the Spurs may take him and stash him overseas: http://t.co/h75cjG9G23
— Alex Kennedy (@AlexKennedyNBA) June 20, 2013
Jeff Withey, Center, Kansas: 7’0″, 222 pounds Withey seems to be the consensus pick for the Spurs at #28 in many mock drafts, thanks to his athleticism and outstanding defense. He’s been compared to Minnesota Timberwolves center, Nikola Pekovic.
Mike Muscala, Center, Bucknell: 6’11”, 230 pounds Muscala was worked out by the Phoenix Suns, and only interviewed by the Utah Jazz and Spurs according to Rotoworld. Muscala is a projected second round pick.
Nick Minnerath, Forward, University of Detroit: 6’8″ The best way to describe Minnerath? He has the look and attitude of Chris “Birdman” Andersen, with DeJuan Blair’s game, just a couple inches taller. He’s worked out for numerous teams, and is a projected late-second round pick.
Arsalan Kazemi, Forward, Oregon: 6’8″, 225 pounds Kazemi was a Spurs last minute workout, and the only reason we know about him, is because he tweeted it. Love you, technology.
Had a great workout with San Antonio Spurs, thanks for having me. #GoSpursGo #Kazemiworld #SanAntonioSpurs #Iran pic.twitter.com/umJiR33eDO
— Arsalan Kazemi (@kazemiworld) June 23, 2013
Ricky Ledo, Guard, Providence: 6’6″, 197 pounds Ledo is one of my favorite draft prospects. He has an all-around game, that definitely still needs improvement. But the potential is there, as he’s been compared to O.J. Mayo in terms of skill. Though he does have maturity issues, he would be a great piece off the bench to back up Danny Green. Ledo is a projected early second round pick, but rumors are he could be gone before the Spurs pick at #28, as well.
Jamaal Franklin, Guard, San Diego State: 6’5″, 191 pounds The best way to describe Franklin? He’s Kawhi Leonard in shooting guard form. He has a lot of the same characteristics that helped and hurt Leonard: Great rebounder, good defender, and is excellent at getting out in transition and getting to the rim…but he’s a poor perimeter shooter and has a poor shot selection. Same as Kawhi Leonard when coming out of San Diego State. One more Kawhi comparison: He’s three weeks younger than Leonard.
Franklin was relatively unknown, and his current sprained ankle may hurt his draft stock, but he’s still a projected mid-first round pick.
Japeth Aguilar, Center, Western Kentucky University/Philippines: 6’9″, 225 pounds According to Project Spurs, San Antonio worked out Aguilar back in 2012, before the season started. The Spurs were probably looking for size and settled on Aron Baynes instead. He’s already 25 and auditioned for multiple D-League teams, so maybe the NBA isn’t for him. But the Spurs could just draft and stash him, just as an asset, if they can’t find anyone they want to take with their second round pick.