June 28, 2012; Newark, NJ, USA; If Zeller ends up becoming a pretty good pro, this is the kind of picture that will probably have Mavs fans climbing out of a 20th story window. Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-US PRESSWIRE
How are the experts around the web grading the Dallas Maverick's draft haul? (hint-it's allll over the place)
SB Nation: A
Dallas saved money by moving down from No. 17 to No. 24 both because Azubuike is gone and there are savings as you move down the first round. The Mavericks can test out James and Crowder in Summer League and training camp, and do not have to make a real commitment until after the Deron Williams matter is settled. Brilliant draft for Dallas, even if it only results in one bit player going forward. Textbook handling for a team maximizing cap space and flexbility. GRADE: A
More after the jump...
Analysis: This was a solid night for the Mavs. I like Cunningham a bit. He's a risky pick, as he has to make a position change at the next level, but his elite athleticism combined with his ability to get to the basket are intriguing. If he figures out how to be a real point guard, he could be a nice get here.
I do, however, think the Mavs passed on two better point guard prospects in Teague and Tony Wroten. To me, Teague is much more of a sure thing. Wroten is a risky pick as well but has more upside than Cunningham.
I think the Mavs took James to be the poster child for their D-League team, the Texas Legends. Think this Iraqi war veteran might sell a few tickets? He can play defense, but at 27 years old, his future in the NBA is pretty limited. Crowder is one of the toughest players in the draft. But he's severely undersized for his position. I like him, but again, the upside is limited. For a team that might be undergoing a major overhaul, I thought there were better upside picks in the 30s such as Quincy Miller, Will Barton and -- if you wanted a guy who could play right away --Draymond Green.
Dallas Mavericks: B-
They trade down, they sold off a late pick for cash to the Lakers. They got a few nice picks who may give them some minutes, but I like getting Bernard James out of Florida State. Everyone is rooting for him to succeed.
The speedy and athletic Jared Cunningham could turn out to be a decent player, but the Mavs passed on more well-rounded prospects with more upside like Perry Jones, Arnett Moultrie, Memphis shooting guard Will Barton and Baylor small forward Quincy Miller to take the Oregon State shooting guard at No. 24. Cunningham averaged 17.9 points last season, but he was not considered a first-round pick by most teams I talked to. Florida State center Bernard James, 27, is a physical player and a terrific story, having spent six years in the Air Force. But it's hard to justify this pick when Barton and Miller, among others, were still on the board. Dallas passed on those prospects once again when it took Marquette senior forward Jae Crowder at No. 34
Fox Sports: A
Dallas: No. 24 Jared Cunningham, No. 33 Bernard James, No. 34 Jae Crowder
While the Mavericks' success next season ultimately will be determined by how they utilize their cap space in free agency, they will still need inexpensive and functional players on the bottom of it. Dallas came away with a decent haul of talent. Cunningham is an attacking guard with a knack for getting to the line, James is a well-schooled defensive center with good bulk and length, and Crowder is smart, battles incredibly hard on both ends and can be an asset off the bench.
CBS Sports: C-
Jared Cunningham (24): He's a terrific athlete who has the ability to be a lock-down defender, but there are serious questions whether he can run a team as a point guard and also whether he can make enough shots to play the off-guard spot. He rarely played the point in his career at Oregon State. This was a risk for Donnie Nelson and the Mavs.
Bernard James (33): Big, strong, physical rebounder who is mature after spending time in the military prior to his time at Florida State.
Jae Crowder (34): Junkyard dog who doesn't have a defined position, but will find a way to get onto the court.
You basically couldn't have picked a more dissimilar grouping of analysis on the same series of events if you were trying to.