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Re-Drafting The Famous 2012 NBA Draft

Fadeaway World

Fadeaway World

The NBA has witnessed plenty of good and bad things and more when it comes to players; you can see flukes and superstars with the same frequency, as you never know what to expect or what you’re getting in this league.

Drafts are the prime example of that since it’s mostly there where franchises either make big mistakes or the best decision ever for the fate of the team when they land a diamond in the rough that can get them to a whole new level.

There are a lot of what ifs in the Association, mostly about draft picks and today we’re going to take a look at one of the most talented drafts in recent years and make some changes after seeing what these players and teams have been and done since then, questioning what would have happened if they picked a player that fit better to their schemes.

Although that draft wasn’t the best ever, there were many talented players, and now, five years after that, we are going to make some changes in the selections just for fun.

1. New Orleans Pelicans

Original Pick: Anthony Davis

Re-draft Pick: Anthony Davis

This is not a surprise; Anthony Davis was, is and will probably be the best players to pick for any team and New Orleans knew that. They picked the former Kentucky center without any hesitation and although they haven’t been able to thrive, Davis keeps loyal to the Pelicans, trying to have a successful run in New Orleans. This was a no-brainer; luckily for the Pelicans they made the right decision.

2. Charlotte Hornets

Original Pick: Michael Kidd-Gilchrist

Re-draft Pick: Damian Lillard

Back in the day, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist was seen as the best option for the Hornets, but so far he has been unable to shine, struggling to find a good shape and stay healthy. Damian Lillard seemed like the best addition for the Hornets, as the point guard has been nothing but great for his current team, the Portland Trail Blazers. Although Charlotte signed Kemba Walker the prior draft, a backcourt with both Lillard and Walker would have been awesome to see, but now we can only imagine.

3. Washington Wizards

Original Pick: Bradley Beal

Re-draft Pick: Andre Drummond

No doubt about the quality of Bradley Beal and the quality of his association with John Wall, but Drummond appeared to be the best option for the capital team. Drummond plus Wall would have been a great duo, just like Chris Paul and DeAndre Jordan in the Clippers. Andre and his points, rebounds and fierce defense could be great for Washington. However, they still look and play well with Beal in their ranks.

4. Cleveland Cavaliers

Original Pick: Dion Waiters

Re-draft Pick: Bradley Beal

With Washington passing on Bradley Beal, Cleveland would have landed the Missouri native instead, dismissing Dion Waiters. Now, if Wall and Beal became one of the best combinations in the league, imagine having Kyrie Irving playing alongside Bradley Beal in the Cavaliers, delighting everybody on a nightly basis. Beal has the speed and the range to back up Kyrie in a great way and who knows, join LeBron to take the Cavs to the promised land.

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5. Sacramento Kings

Original Pick: Thomas Robinson

Re-draft Pick: Draymond Green

We all know the story of Thomas Robinson, a guy who appeared to be the next big thing but at the end never lived up the expectations. Sacramento missed a great opportunity here by passing on Draymond Green, one of the best defensive players in the league that right now is an important part of the Golden State Warriors’ success in recent years. It is well known the history of draft mistakes by the Kings, but this one might be one of the most painful.

6. Portland Trail Blazers

Original Pick: Damian Lillard

Re-draft Pick: Khris Middleton

With Damian Lillard out of the map, the Trail Blazers would have picked the small forward Khris Middleton, who is one of the most reliable players in his team right now. Even though he has to share the ball with the soon-to-be superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo, Khris has managed to stay as relevant players in the team, improving his game season after season. There is no doubt that an association between him and LaMarcus Aldridge would have brought several joys to Portland.

7. Golden State Warriors

Original Pick: Harrison Barnes

Re-draft Pick: Harrison Barnes

Nothing to change here, as Barnes was the apparently best player remaining at that moment. Given the needs of the Warriors back in the day, Harrison was the right pick to make. Also, Barnes looked like a guy ready to shine in the NBA before winding up and leaving the franchise. Now he is part of the Dallas Mavericks where he is decreasing his level, expecting to have a decent run the rest of his tenure in the league.

8. Toronto Raptors

Original Pick: Terrence Ross

Re-draft Pick: Evan Fournier

The Raptors appeared to have found a gem in Terrence Ross, but time proved that they were wrong with the Oregon born. Now he is part of the Orlando Magic after failing to thrive with the Canadian organization, where he barely showed his skills to dunk the ball and nothing else. Evan Fournier was the right selection for the Raptors, as the Frenchman has demonstrated that although he’s not a superstar, he still can be good for any team, helping either coming off the bench or as a starting player.

9. Detroit Pistons

Original Pick: Andre Drummond

Re-draft Pick: Michael Kidd-Gilchrist

With Andre Drummond taken by the Wizards, Kidd-Gilchrist would have been the right selection for the Detroit Pistons. Although Kidd-Gilchrist is far from being a superstar, he would have been a great addition for the Pistons, fitting in their scheme with extreme ease. He’s still trying to shine in Charlotte, but seeing the lack of competition in Detroit five years ago, Kidd-Gilchrist could be a very important player down there.

10. New Orleans Pelicans

Original Pick: Austin Rivers

Re-draft Pick: Jae Crowder

New Orleans had the opportunity to build a great during this match, but after drafting Anthony Davis, they missed a big opportunity when they picked Austin Rivers. Don’t get me wrong, I think Rivers is good, but right now he’s far from being the player that people expected him to be. Jae Crowder on the other side is a very talented player that has improved his game through every season he has spent in the association. Crowder would have been a great ally for Anthony Davis, helping the center to take the team to another level.

11. Portland Trail Blazers

Original Pick: Meyers Leonard

Re-draft Pick: Will Barton

The Portland Trail Blazers have missed several opportunities to have a competitive team and this one is not the exception. Yes, they picked Will Barton in the 2nd round, but he never played more than 17 minutes per game. After they traded him, Will started shining with the Denver Nuggets, showing all his skills on the court. Today, he would be a great addition for the Trail Blazers.

12. Houston Rockets

Original Pick: Jeremy Lamb

Re-draft Pick: Kent Bazemore

The Houston Rockets selected Jeremy Lamb in 2012, dismissing several players that could make the team thrive. Lamb has been wandering around without finding the desired shape, trying to improve his game without any luck. That year Kent Bazemore could be the perfect addition for the Rockets, becoming one of the best rookies and players in the league under the tutelage of Kevin McHale and Mike D’Antoni.

13. Phoenix Suns

Original Pick: Kendall Marshall

Re-draft Pick: Jared Sullinger

Kendall Marshall is just another fluke. Marshall entered the league seen as a very reliable player and Phoenix Suns took “advantage” of that. Unfortunately for all of them, Marshall was unable to thrive, winding up and being just a regular player. Jared Sullinger instead was the right selection for the Arizona team, as even if he’s not part of the league anymore, Sullinger had very good performances during his days in the league, being a helpful agent in each of those squads.

14. Milwaukee Bucks

Original Pick: John Henson

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Re-draft Pick: John Henson

Talking about the Bucks, this was the right move to make. Henson was the best player for Milwaukee’s needs. The power forward has become a reliable player in his team, changing roles with the centers of the team and helping the Bucks to be one of the most prominent teams in the NBA right now. Perhaps Henson was expected to be a little bit more successful, but he has made himself a trustworthy name during his stay with Jason Kidd’s team.

15. Philadelphia 76ers

Original Pick: Moe Harkless

Re-draft Pick: Terrence Jones

Here we have two players that currently play in China, but with different journeys in the NBA. Moe Harkless was selected by the Sixers five years ago, but his entire tenure in the big league was nothing but awful. He tried and tried to shine in several teams but without any success. Terrence Jones on the other side had a more pleasant run, having very good performances with the Houston Rockets before his career took a major hit due to constant injuries.

16. Houston Rockets

Original Pick: Royce White

Re-draft Pick: Terrence Ross

Houston has made some mistakes in recent years at the time of drafting, but this one was huge seeing the actuality of their pick that year, Royce White, the Rockets certainly regretted this movement as White is a free agent at this very moment, while Terrence Ross has had better seasons in the league. Ross and his explosiveness would have been great for Houston and his offensive scheme.

17. Cleveland Cavaliers

Original Pick: Tyler Zeller

Re-draft Pick: Austin Rivers

Seeing how things went with Dion Waiters, Austin Rivers would have been a better option for the Cavs with this pick. They picked Tyler Zeller that even today is trying to show a good face when Rivers could be a better option coming off the bench to lead the second unit of the Cavaliers. Waiters left the team to get more minutes, but Rivers would have been comfortable with that position.

18. Houston Rockets

Original Pick: Terrence Jones

Re-draft Pick: Moe Harkless

Philadelphia and Houston could swap picks here, as they picked the right players for each other in that draft. Terrence Jones had a decent run playing in Houston, but Maurice Harkless appeared like the best option for the Rockets. Moe never was able to fit it Portland’s scheme, struggling to adapt to the Trail Blazers’ style of playing.

19. Orlando Magic

Original Pick: Andrew Nicholson

Re-draft Pick: Jonathan Simmons

Simmons wasn’t drafted that year, as he landed in the San Antonio Spurs following this draft. Simmons displayed all the good of his games with the Spurs where he enchanted everybody, being a big surprise. They picked Andrew Nicholson with that pick and now Nicholson is part of the Brooklyn Nets where he is very unlikely to have a good run. Simmons would have significant a big improvement for the Magic.

20. Denver Nuggets

Original Pick: Evan Fournier

Re-draft Pick: Dion Waiters

With Fournier taken by the Toronto Raptors, Dion Waiters would have been the best agent to land in Denver. He demonstrated that he is ready to take over a team and make it reach meaningful things when he left Cleveland to go to Miami. Waiters showed everybody that he can be a leader and displayed good things every time he had the chance to do it, although his big mouth has gotten him into a lot of trouble as well.

21. Boston Celtics

Original Pick: Jared Sullinger

Re-draft Pick: Festus Ezeli

Ezeli landed in Golden State to be the next big man of the team but so far he hasn’t been that good, struggling in both the Warriors and Trail Blazers. Facing the departure of Kendrick Perkins, Ezeli would have been a great addition for the Celtics who were in need of a big man to replace Kendrick. Now Festus isn’t at the top of his game due to injuries, but he can still be quite productive once he gets back on the hardwood.

22. Boston Celtics

Original Pick: Fab Melo

Re-draft Pick: Miles Plumlee

Boston missed two opportunities in a row here, as they lost the chance to have a promising frontcourt with both Festus Ezeli and Miles Plumlee. The Celtics picked Fab Melo instead who didn’t live up the expectations people expected from him, being traded to the several teams before passing away. Miles Plumlee on the other side would have been a great partner for Ezeli and more when he showed what he could achieve and surprised everybody.

23. Atlanta Hawks

Original Pick: John Jenkins

Re-draft Pick: Meyers Leonard

Meyers Leonard was a very good acquisition for the Hawks in 2012 seeing his capacities on the court, but they picked John Jenkins instead, a guy who is currently playing in the D-League. Although Meyers is not the best player in his position, he has become a reliable agent for the Trail Blazers, improving his game every season and trying to build momentum off the bench for RIP city.

24. Dallas Mavericks

Original Pick: Jared Cunningham

Re-draft Pick: Kyle O’Quinn

Dallas is not precisely the most attractive city to play for many players, but this is harder when they don’t get any help from the front office. Back in 2012, they picked Jared Cunningham when the right pick was Kyle O’Quinn. Cunningham right now is part of the Bayern Munich while O’Quinn has managed to stay relevant in the league playing for the New York Knicks. Perhaps he’s not an all-star, but he got what it takes to compete in the NBA.

25. Memphis Grizzlies

Original Pick: Tony Wroten

Re-draft Pick: Jeremy Lamb

Memphis could have landed a very good player for his style of playing in Jeremy Lamb, but they decided to go for Tony Wroten after seeing Lamb joining the Houston Rockets. Right now the shooting guard is trying to be a decent player with the Charlotte Hornets while Wroten has had several appearances in other basketball leagues. Currently, he plays in Venezuela, wishing to have a new opportunity to go back to the NBA.

26. Indiana Pacers

Original Pick: Miles Plumlee

Re-draft Pick: Tyler Zeller

Zeller was very likely to be a real threat playing for the Pacers, but they picked Miles Plumlee instead. Tyler counted with the tools to fit in Frank Vogel’s scheme and thrive in Indy. Plumlee was never able to show all the best of his game and since then has been looking for a team that can give him the chance to play with steadiness and demonstrates that he’s not done. Zeller would have been really helpful for the team that became the nightmare of LeBron’s Miami.

27. Miami Heat

Original Pick: Arnett Moultrie

Re-draft Pick: Mike Scott

Right now Scott is a free agent while Moultrie is playing at Uruguay. However, Scott was really great back in the day, being a serious prospect in the league. Unfortunately, he couldn’t thrive with the Atlanta Hawks and after several years wandering around, he is now a free agent. Playing in Miami with the tutelage of LeBron James or Dwyane Wade would have meant something totally different for Scott, but Atlanta took the lead with the power forward.

28. Oklahoma City Thunder

Original Pick: Perry Jones III

Re-draft Pick: Tony Wroten

Perry Jones is another proof of how bad Oklahoma City is scouting at times. After the Hasheem Thabeet fiasco, the Thunder came with another opportunity to pick wisely and start building a championship team, they failed at it again. Sure, this draft wasn’t full of talented but now you see the better option than Tony Wroten was in front of Perry Jones III that currently plays at the D-League, unable to make a real impact in the NBA.

29. Chicago Bulls

Original Pick: Marquis Teague

Re-draft Pick: Quincy Acy

Chicago missed a great opportunity here by passing on Quincy Acy, who was selected in the second round. The Bulls drafted the younger Teague brother in Marquis Teague as the right player to compete with Derrick Rose for the point guard position, but Teague was a bust. Right now he plays at the D-League, being one of the biggest mistakes that the Bulls have made in recent years, and boy, that’s a lot to say.

30. Golden State Warriors

Original Pick: Festus Ezeli

Re-draft Pick: Justin Hamilton

Now that Ezeli was taken, Hamilton looked like the best pick for the Warriors. Justin was seen as one of the best intern prospects in the league when entering the 2012 NBA and although he’s not part of the league right now, he really looked like the right piece for Golden State. However, they missed and picked Festus Ezeli that right now is not even part of the team.