GMTR Mock Draft Analysis: Round 1
Posted by Erik on September 18, 2008
I got the “GO Signal” from Nels at GMTR do a draft analysis of the ongoing mock draft. I will do coverage and commentary of the draft on a round by round basis. That being said, I must say that I’m proud to be part of the 12 fantasy-heads chosen to take part in the draft. This mock draft gives me some good draft analysis material, which is way better than what I would have ended up getting from your garden variety public league players.
To my co-drafters: You guys have my respect as we all passed Nels’ and Patrick’s criteria to participate. This draft coverage is MY take and opinions on the picks. If I disagree with your choice, don’t feel offended. Just consider it a difference in opinion. 🙂
|1-2||2nd Round Reach||Amare Stoudemire||PF/C|
|1-3||Jeff’s Duncanfaces||LeBron James||SF|
|1-4||REAL Batman (sean)||Kobe Bryant||SG|
|1-8||OKC Colon Thunder||Dirk Nowitzki||PF|
|1-9||Sexy Time||Kevin Garnett||PF|
|1-10||SA Spurscasters||Josh Smith||SF/PF|
|1-11||Points in the Paint||Allen Iverson||PG/SG|
Picks 1-4: No surprises here folks. I expected those players to be sure TOP 4 picks. I personally have CP3 slated as a #1, regardless of fantasy format. Most of the other mock drafts out there will probably also reflect this thinking. Now the next 3 players after Chris Paul can pretty much be shuffled up and dealt in any order for the next 3 spots. Kobe, LBJ, and Man-Beast (as I like to call Amare) are in a veritable 3-way tie for the 2nd pick in my book. It would all boil down to the drafter’s preferences and biases. I would just like to note that Kobe landed 4th pick possibly because his decision to refuse surgery on his pinkie finger which may be a cause for mild concern to some drafters. – No problem. It’s understandable.
Picks 5-9: This is where I was a bit taken aback by Bucko’s choice of taking Shawn Marion as the 5th pick. I was expecting Elton, KG or Dirk to be the one rounding out the TOP 5. Although the players chosen in picks 5-9 were also the guys I had in mind for that draft range, I was expecting The Matrix to drop down a little more from his previous TOP 1-3 position of previous years. He is statistically no longer the Phoenix-Marion we fantasy players once knew and loved. That being said I do agree with his logic as he commented on the DRAFT BOARD, and I quote:
“Marion has consistently been one of the best if not the best fantasy contributor for years. This year is a contract year for Marion. Worst Case scenario is that Marion finishes as a first round talent, which is what I look for in my first round pick. You don’t win the draft in the first round, but you can lose it. I won’t have to worry about this with the matrix.”
Historical track record of consistency and contract year are good enough reasons to pick a guy, especially if you’re talking about Shawn Marion. Not my choice, but not a bad one either.
Moving on. Dwyane Wade, the Olympian came in next. Here’s an interesting risk-reward choice. If Flash give us 78+ games of his Olympic form then Doneycat’s rival managers better watch out. The question that looms over a lot of fantasy heads is “Can he sustain his performance and health over the course of a full NBA season?” Pick 6 is where I had a KG – EB toss up. Wade got picked. No real issues with that decision. It’s both risky but at the same time ballsy.
From a physical standpoint I feel that Elton Brand is ready to get back to his 20 point, 10 rebound, 2 block nightly output. The question mark that I still have stamped into my fantasy outlook for EB is whether or not he can produce the said numbers in Philly. It’s a new environment and there is no historical data that indicates performance reliability. This is a minor issue if at all, because I foresee him to be a fantasy stud this year.
As you’ve read, you can probably tell that I was bit befuddled by the drop in Dirk and KG’s drafted positions. On the other hand I’m not surprised they rounded out this zone in the draft. They were “must picks” in terms of sheer fantasy value at this point. So no further comments from me on their being picked here.
Picks 10-12: As I said in a previous blog entry, this zone is tough for the first round and drafters will have to do more speculation and get more creative in their draft strategies. Since Picks 1 through 9 didn’t really bring in any real surprises. It was easy to discuss them in groupings. But from this point onwards, I will be discussing each pick on a pick by pick basis for the rest of my coverage of the mock draft.
Pick 1-10: Josh Smith – Before I begin, I have to admit that I reached for him as a late first round pick in 2 of my leagues last year. I feel this season doesn’t change it – taking Josh in the first is STILL a reach pick. Don’t get me wrong. I AM a Josh Smith fan, both in real life and in fantasy. Whether SA Sportscasters is enamored with his exciting game (like me) or the fact that he’s a mean ass multi-cat contributor; in terms of sheer fantasy value SAS still passed up on guys with better value. I don’t blame him for getting creative, but I doubt either team drafting after him would have “pulled the rug from under him” and taken Josh before his second round pick. Perhaps it wasn’t something he wanted to risk? Only he can really answer that. If I was picking 10th I would have been eyeing the likes of A.I., Camby, or even Al Jefferson. From my experience last year, I would say that Josh Smith is better reached for in the second round.
Pick 1-11: Allen Iverson – My pick. This was tough. I know he did well over 82 games at Denver last year. In the past, however, the thoughts that come to mind when you’re considering an A.I. pick were; lots of points but at low FG%, good FT% and attempts but a constant injury risk due to his kamikaze drives into the lane, and he simply kills your TO cat. This 33 year old’s performance last year addressed some of those scary thoughts and 2 words ended up standing out more for this upcoming season – CONTRACT YEAR. Am I scared of an injury? Hell yeah! Am I excited that he’ll go all fantasy monster trying to land future big payday? Hell yeah!
Pick 1-12: Carlos Boozer – Personally I would have picked any of the following over him in last position: Al Jefferson, Marcus Camby, Caron Butler, Danny Granger… I find Carlos to be an odd choice in terms of 1st round center picks. I think that “new-team Camby” is still a superior value pick vs Carlos by season’s end – at least in terms of Centers. In fairness to Alpha-T and his draft choice, tail-end drafters choices are best understood and appreciated in the context of BOTH his first and second round choices. As I said earlier guys, in the latter end of the draft you have to get creative in your draft strategy and take full advantage of your initiative for the second round. So I’ll end it here. Stay tuned for GMTR Mock Draft Analysis: ROUND 2 to get the low down on Alpha-T’s strategy!