Thursday, May 23, 2013

No consensus on McLemore’s draft position after lottery

Kansas guard Ben McLemore waves to a face in the crowd as he and his teammates stretch prior to tipoff against North Carolina, Sunday, March 24, 2013 at the Sprint Center in Kansas City, Mo.

Kansas guard Ben McLemore waves to a face in the crowd as he and his teammates stretch prior to tipoff against North Carolina, Sunday, March 24, 2013 at the Sprint Center in Kansas City, Mo.


There’s a strong possibility Kansas University’s Ben McLemore will be coached by a Jayhawk in the NBA next season.’s latest 2013 Mock Draft has Jacque Vaughn’s Orlando Magic selecting the 6-foot-5 McLemore with the No. 2 overall pick in June 27 draft, following Cleveland’s projected selection of Kentucky’s Nerlens Noel at No. 1.

“I just think McLemore has real superstar quality,” Sports Illustrated’s Chris Mannix told the Orlando Sentinel. “I think he’s a more athletic version of Ray Allen. He certainly finishes better than Ray. After a couple of years, he could really blossom into one of those franchise 2-guards.”

Mannix believes McLemore is just too talented to pass up, even though Orlando needs a point guard and Michigan’s Trey Burke is available.

“The Magic have needs everywhere. They have a lot of good, young talent, no question about it, but there’s not anybody on that roster where you say, ‘We’re not going to take this specific position.’ I think you have to take the best player on the board,” Mannix told the Sentinel.

Orlando’s starting shooting guard currently is capable veteran Arron Afflalo. Cleveland, which is not expected to take McLemore after selecting 6-4 shooting guard Dion Waiters a year ago, could trade the top pick considering Noel is not expected to be back from a torn ACL until Christmastime.

“Noel is just the sort of defensive presence they (Cavaliers) need to upgrade the worst defensive team — in terms of field goal percentage — in the league,” Mannix told the Sentinel., by the way, still has McLemore listed as the top pick in the draft, followed by Noel to Orlando, Otto Porter to Washington and Victor Oladipo to Charlotte.’s Chad Ford has Noel No. 1, followed by Burke, Porter and McLemore all the way to No. 4 to Charlotte.

“The Bobcats are the big losers, again, in the draft lottery. But if they land McLemore, they might get the player with the best upside in the draft,” Ford wrote at “The team desperately needs outside shooting, and McLemore might have the best stroke of anyone in the draft.”

McLemore on Wednesday spoke with’s Henry Abbott about the draft: “A lot of people have different opinions. A lot of people say he (Burke) should be No. 1 and I should be No. 1 and Nerlens and so on. You’ve got to work to get that position.

“I won’t be disappointed,” McLemore added of a scenario in which he would not be No. 1. “As long as I get drafted and have the opportunity to take care of my family ... that’s the main thing to me, taking care of my family.”

Both ESPN’s Ford and say KU’s Jeff Withey will be taken No. 22 overall by Brooklyn. currently has Withey as a second-round pick, No. 35 overall to Philadelphia.


Scott MacWilliams 7 years ago

It's all good, as far as I'm concerned. Go get 'em, Ben, we'll all be pulling for you no matter where you end up. It would be kind of cool to be playing for Jacque Vaughn, one of my all-time favorite Jayhawks.

Onward & Upward!!

Kevin Huffman 7 years ago

Almost all good.

Stupid with Withey 13 SPOTS lower than ESPN's Ford &!?!?!?! :(

JayHok 7 years ago

Unless the Cleveland GM wakes up, Noel will go #1 in this draft. Sam Bowie over Jordan all over again. Oden over Durant. Bad knees on skinny overly athletic legs. Playing wreckless jumping over players to get a block works sometimes in college for a year or two. Not in the pros. Knees, knees, knees. When will the GMs learn. I know Kevin Pritchard wishes he had his draft pick back.

jaybate 7 years ago

The NBA is strange even for a cartel. It systematically and intentionally lets the worst teams, usually with the worst management, have first crack at the best talent. This skews outcomes toward management picking the wrong players for their needs, and then applying substandard coaching to for two-to-three years, before their contract is up. Very weird and very inefficient. In a way, though, it makes very good sense from a media perspective.

By inefficiently utilizing most of the top talent immediately, that top talent has less of a tendency to destabilize the top teams that have been heavily marketed the previous few years. In turn, when top talent gets out of the lottery hell it is locked up in initially, then it can be channelled to the team in the optimal (most able to pay exhorbitantly for services) TV market that needs a franchise player to ramp it up through buying a player. Its interesting for sure.

Tony Bandle 7 years ago

Totally agree..Unibrow is bigger, stronger and more athletic than NN and he pretty much rode the pine the whole season!!

Jory Collins 7 years ago

Davis played 29 minuts per game, avg. 13 / 8. I hope Ben is that productive as a rookie. But I agree, Davis is/was a better prospect than Noel.

JayHawkFanToo 7 years ago

Davis missed 18 out of 82 games due to injury.

JayHok 7 years ago

Night and day. Davis is a stud. Will only get better. Thicker knees. Also plays under control. Davis holds his spot and jumps off two feet to swat. Running full sprint jumping over players to get blocks isn't what the NBA franchises want out of their 7 footers. Admirable in college for Noel to do that nearly all season. Not smart in the NBA for you or your company your contract is with. That's what Noel does. He's another Greg Oden or Sam Bowie looking for a city to land in at #1. I guarantee with Cleveland's moves as of late they'll take him. Bank on it.

KCatty 7 years ago

Dude, I love the Hawks as much as the next guy, but when you say stuff like that you make the entire message board sound like a bunch of homers. Davis had a very good rookie year once he got healthy. He played just under 30 minutes a game and finished second in the Rookie of the Year voting. Thats VERY far from "riding the pine." You're starting to sound like one of the Grapes - just hating to be hating - regardless of if the facts suit your argument or not. We're better than that on this board.

Alex Peekeaton 7 years ago

I think you are confusing TRob and Davis Oak??? Davis averaged 29 minutes, 13.5 ppg (52 fg%), 8.2 rpg, and almost 2 blocks per game.

KCatty 7 years ago

Which brings up an interesting point, hopefully Ben can be the first KU first rounder (other than maybe Kief) that plays up to his draft position. Marcus, TRob, Henry, Julian, Cole and Arthur will be lucky to get second contracts. I'm always worried that will be used against us in recruiting. Hopefully Ben can reverse that trend.

Alex Peekeaton 7 years ago

Hasn't hurt KU in recruiting yet and most recruits remember the successful NBA players, not so much the ones that didn't last. Obviously Ben has a much better chance than the ones you mentioned based upon pure talent.

Kevin Huffman 7 years ago

Arthur's looked good in spot duty as Z. Randolph's back-up at least. Problem being they don't often need someone coming in for Zach.

Benz Junque 7 years ago

I 100% agree. You should always take talent over height. The body isn't meant to be 6-10 to 7 feet tall. The number of big guys that don't break down physically is tiny. McLemore will be an NBA All Star in 5 years or less, while Noel will still be missing games for various ailments.

JayHok 7 years ago

An eyeball test on Noel's knees should be enough for any GM with common sense. Looking at Noel's style of play only adds to the future injury profile. Worse yet for him is he recently had an ACL injury for all the reasons discussed. He's not 7 feet. Davis made sense to go #1 last year for what the NBA needs. Noel's doesn't in the least if a GM is actually paying attention. I still predict Noel to go #1 considering we're talking about Cleveland's GM.

Phil Leister 7 years ago

I sorta understand the sentiment that you build franchises around bigs. But that only makes sense if your big is a Shaq. Even Dwight has shown himself to be incapable of being a franchise player. I'm just not sure how a GM could draft a big guy with knee problems that they know about from the outset.

Beau Woolsey 7 years ago

Dwight was the magic Wasn't given the support of coaches or healthy players to show the he could have been the man for the lakers

KemDooKU 7 years ago

A man on top has no where to go but down-

Jonathan Allison 7 years ago

I think that McLemore has the skills and the abilities to be a star in the NBA, but for some reason I have this lingering feeling that McLemore may be to immature or have too fragile a psychi to thrive in the NBA setting. I hope that is wrong and that he is able to overcome his youthful naivety. I'm also scared that he won't be as effective against bigger defenders in the NBA, but hopefully the elevation and quickness that he gets on his jump shot will make that a non-factor.

Preston Dwiggins 7 years ago

I completely understand your concerns "plasticJHawk". Let's just hope he has responsible people around him. Think of it this way, at least Ben got two extra years at KU before the NBA (money/fame/women). He's as ready as would have ever been. I have a feeling he's going to make us very, very proud.

Cameron Cederlind 7 years ago

It's possible we could have the #1 draft pick 15 years in a row . . .

jayhawkinATL 7 years ago

Here's to hoping Withey stays in the from the combine wasn't too flattering.

Joe Joseph 7 years ago

I think McLemore will have a long NBA career, but I'm not sure he has the assertiveness or the handle to develop into a star. I'd like to be wrong.

I do know this: I'd take him before Nerlens Noel...

KGphoto 7 years ago

In that sense I compare him to Ray Allen even more. I don’t remember Ray ever being particularly assertive, or having great handles. I could be wrong but that’s what sticks with me from his UConn days. The guy could simply shoot the lights out, and it turned him into a perennial NBA All-Star.

I still believe Ben can be a Ray Allen who doesn’t just shoot and occasionally dunk, but shoots and occasionally WOW dunks. Who shoots and can also run back on D and do one of those Lebron James-from-behind blocks at the rim.

Benz Junque 7 years ago

He doesn't have it YET but I have the feeling that he will after a year or two. Kids grow up and having a bunch of coaches and teammates yelling at you to get after it will light his fire.

Keith Kienzle 7 years ago

I watched some Ray Allen wow dunks on Youtube yesterday ....

KGphoto 7 years ago

Wow! That’s pretty good. I don’t remember him being nearly as athletic. He drove pretty well at times. To be fair though, that’s the highlight reel of what looks like his pro career and Ben had nearly as many highlight dunks in his first college season. AND he still gets much more elevation than Ray.

Couple of those were beauties though. Makes me compare them even more.

clevelandjayhawker 7 years ago

This article just makes me wonder even more why did marcus smart come back for a year? I love Ben's game but I just worry about him not being a slasher or showing that he could beat his man one on one. In the motion offense he got some good looks and converted, plus Bill can draw an inbounds play that is 80% sure to end in a highlight dunk. The question is: Can Ben dribble enough to create his own shot? Im still not sure, and would prob rank Noel and Porter ahead of him. Smart could have easily been the #2 pick this year, but instead will be around #10 or lower next year.

Kevin Huffman 7 years ago

Yep, w/ Orlando winning the No. 2 spot, Smart would've been the "slam-dunk" no doubter No. 2 pick with it turning out this way.

Chris Nieto 7 years ago

A capable handle is one ofnthe easiest things to develop he'll be fine in that regard. Basketball is now his job and he'll be working on his game all the time with coaches or individually. The only question that remains is whether he'll turn it on and be assertive or get that alpha dog killer instinct all the time. I doubt he gets a killer instinct such as a Kobe, but he'll be more than serviceable and will be able to heat it up as he did at KU at the bare minimum

FarSideHawk 7 years ago

You guys heard the Brad Frederick (son of Bob) - Asst. Coach rumors? Sounds pretty interesting?

jaybate 7 years ago

If Bill is thinking about hiring Brad Frederick, I want him to look at the picture below. Does he trust Dean Smith--the man that Brad Frederick says taught him how to run a program--the man that reputedly made Roy Williams agree to recruit only half the country while at KU for FIFTEEN YEARS?

Source: the LJW

Source: the LJW by jaybate

nuleafjhawk 7 years ago


Dean: Sorry guys. No more pickled eggs for me until after the game.....

milehighhawk 7 years ago

What are you talking about, Jaybate?

Bob Frederick passed away.

His son is Brad.

Either uninformed or in poor taste.

jaybate 7 years ago


If you don't get it, you're either daft, or disingenuous!

Bob Frederick was all Jayhawk! He appeared to deserve better than to appear to get caught between, and sacrificed in the power play involving, Hemenway and Roy and Roy's divided loyalties. Frederick deserved better.

The KU-UNC connection is riddled with UNC first and KU second. KU needs coaches that will put KU first, second and third!


Robert Brock 7 years ago

I don't expect that he will actually play for a couple of years but I am excited for him: he can spend his time thinking about investments and not worrying about the future.

Benz Junque 7 years ago

Eh, what? Won't play? McLemore will START for whichever team drafts him. He is better than every option on the top 4 teams in the draft.

Jim Tebow 7 years ago

twocoach44, I wouldn't say that. You can honestly say that as of right now, Mclemore would be a better option than Wayne Ellington or Dion Waiters for Cleveland at the 2? Mclemore has much more potential than Ellington, and a little more than Waiters, but I wouldn't say he is a better option in year 1 to start

Benz Junque 7 years ago

Cleveland isn't picking him and neither is Washington. So you are correct. Whoever DOES draft him is doing so because he is their best choice at the position. He would start in Orlando or Charlotte and I will be shocked if Orlando passes on him.

Kevin Huffman 7 years ago

Even if Orlando takes him, Ben would probably come in, in relief of Afflalo.

If Charlotte took him, they'd probably start B. Gordon at the "2" and he'd come in, in relief of him.

I don't know of too many teams where Ben would just automatically start.

Heck, I'd be surprised if Noel started as soon as he's healthy. You would figure that if Varejao was healhty they'd start Tr. Thompson at the "4" & Varjao at the "5".

Neither Ben nor Burke would start for Orlando - J. Nelson would start at PG & Afflalo at SG.

Washington's the FIRST place where I think the one drafted would PROBABLY start.....O. Porter would PROBABLY start but even then in the preseason it would probably be a battle between him and M. Webster to determine that.

Kevin Huffman 7 years ago

Bull crap. Maybe by the end of the year, but I'd be VERY surprised if he started from the get-go.

Kyle Sybesma 7 years ago

I was watching an ESPN post game commentation from Stephen A. Smith in Miami and over his shoulder was Bill Self and family getting a picture taken on the court. Just thought it was interesting that's all.

Keith Kienzle 7 years ago

Bill Self > Erik Spoelstra. LeBron James > Summer's Eve.

wrwlumpy 7 years ago

Here's one after the game from Self's Twitter.

jaybate 7 years ago


Did Smith draw any conclusations? :-)

Kevin Huffman 7 years ago

That's cool....too bad Chalmers got hurt in the game.

He was probably there because of Mario.

chriz 7 years ago

Glad to see that Ben didn't make any comments about his amateur status!

jaybate 7 years ago

The NBA fascinates from a firm regime point of view. The teams with lottery picks are not only usually the worst teams, but they are usually also the worst managed teams. This leads them not only to pick incorrectly, but then to poorly coach the player they shouldn't have picked. I cannot think of another profession, or industry, that systematically and intentionally matches its best talent with its worst management in the early stages of that talents' careers. It makes a good case for the inefficiency of cartels. Even the privately owned central banking cartel and grain cartel don't intentionally do what the NBA does. :-)

Sam Constance 7 years ago

Withey falling to the second round would be insanity. Especially when you think about the fact that Aldrich, who most of us can agree was not as agile or athletic as Withey, went in the lottery.

As far as Ben goes, I tend to agree with KGphoto. He resembles Ray, not just in his shooting stroke, but in the fact that Allen wasn't the kind of break-down-his-defender, get-his-own-shot sort of player that everyone is wondering if Ben can do. He also wasn't the type of assertive two-guard that we see in guys like Dwyane Wade.

If you can shoot like Ben, you will make it in the NBA. There are already plenty of guys in the NBA who are built to get guys like Ray Allen and Ben McLemore an open look. If Ben wants to become a special player, then yes, he's going to have to refine his handle and probably become a bit more aggressive. But he has the building blocks to be a solid NBA starter for his entire career.

I am a tad torn, however. With Cleveland holding the #1 pick, I'm split between wanting Ben to get the #1 overall pick he deserves and not wanting him to go to basketball wasteland (aka, Cleveland). One thing is for sure, no matter where Nerlens Noel goes in the draft, it will be too high for a raw/limited near-footer who has questionable knees. Noel should be late lottery to first round if you ask me. Too many questions about what he brings to the table and whether or not he will ever be as good physically as he was before the ACL tear.

Kevin Huffman 7 years ago

I think Aldrich was a better rebounder than Jeff though and had more weight on him.

I'll be curious to see if Sacramento uses him at all.

I saw that his last two games - which were "garbage time" games he went for 12 & 12 and then 12 & 13.

***of ALL of the recent KU guys drafted I was the MOST disappointed in how Houston didn't use T.Rob at all. Seemed weird as it seemed like they gave up plenty to get him, like he's in their future plans and they think something of him. Or would you say that the deal was ACTUALLY MORE for Fr. Garcia? :( If so, that sure is disappointing.

I could still see T.Rob in just a couple of years morphing into Z. Randolph. Have a hard time believing that he's not going to "make it".

texashawk10 7 years ago

Coming from a Rockets fan, those were trades that I didn't like. They were done to get as much cap room as possible to go after Dwight Howard this offseason. The rumor is that the Rockets are going to try and work out a sign and trade with the Lakers for Howard and that T-Rob would be part of that deal. As much as I would hate to see Dwight Howard poison the Rockets, if they do make that trade, I'll be happy for T-Rob to end up in a place where he'll have a chance to become a starter for a team willing to do anything to win.

Keith Kienzle 7 years ago

jaybate, your last comment is brilliant.

Big_Dipper 7 years ago

With all the talk of the Kings moving to Seattle, or not moving, I've been hoping the Magic move to KC and draft McLemore. With a Jayhawk as a coach and a Jayhawk as a star player on the team, there's no reason they shouldn't have several fans in attendance on a nightly basis. Especially if they get lucky and get the number 1 pick next year and draft Wiggins. But it's likely just a dream...

texashawk10 7 years ago

There's only 2 teams in the NBA that could realistically move and the NBA owners shot down the Kings move to Seattle. The Hornets/Pelicans are the only other team that would be a realistic candidate for relocation in the near future because their attendance numbers are not good.

Big_Dipper 7 years ago

The Hornets/Pelicans just moved recently and then traded their best player. They probably won't be moving any time soon.

texashawk10 7 years ago

Their attendance numbers are bad and they almost left New Orleans once already after Katrina. By near future however, I'm not referring to the next 2-3 year, but in the next 10-15 years. I also know the New Orleans franchise gets reviewed every few years to determine to determine if it's worth it to keep the team in New Orleans. The biggest thing they have going for them right now is neither of the reasons you mentioned, it's actually their new owner Tom Benson. Benson is also the owner of the Saints is a hero in New Orleans for doing everything possible to keep the Saints in New Orleans and will do everything he can to keep the Hornets/Pelicans in New Orleans.

texashawk10 7 years ago

Dan Gilbert does not know how to run a franchise. However, Noel is the better fit for what they need. Varejao seems like he is always injured at this point and it's too early to tell what Waiters will turn into. Noel's injury is a red flag, but not enough to pass on if the Cleveland management think he can develop into a very good compliment to go with Irving. I thought going into the lottery that Detroit or Phoenix was the best fit for McLemore, but neither are realistic options at this point so I really hope he goes to Orlando otherwise he is going to rot in Charlotte.

jaybate 7 years ago

If Cleveland, or Charlotte, draft Ben, he should sue immediately for free agency and blow the NBA out of the water! Those will be three wasted years. It is time for the NBA to adopt the OAD rule for itself. One year contracts the first year, then free agency. It's America. It's OADtastic!!!!

jaybate 7 years ago

"Some Rules Used By NBA Teams to Draft Players".

--If we need a point guard, we draft a center.

--If we need a shooting guard, we draft a center.

--If we need a small forward, we draft a center.

--If we need a power forward, we draft a center.

--If we need a center, we trade down for a guard and a forward.

--If we need a coach, we draft a center and a shooting guard.

--If we need a new GM, we trade up two spots and draft a tweener.

--If we need a new owner, we move the franchise, fire the GM, hire a .500 coach, and draft a center.

nuleafjhawk 7 years ago

If I were to hazard a wild guess, I'd say you feel the same way about NBA "management" as I do about people who text and drive.

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