I couldn't really decide how I wanted to do the predraft stuff, so I thought I would focus on the players I'd like seeing in a Mavs uniform next season. Of course, that includes people who won't be there at 22 so I'm breaking this into three parts. Guys Dallas would have to trade for, that they could maybe get lucky and have fall to them, and then the realistic list of guys with a very good chance of sitting there at 22.
I'll start at the top with three guys who I'd be happy to see Dallas trade up for. To get the obvious out of the way first, there's probably only like a 1% chance one of these three end up here. And before you come up with crazy trade ideas, any deal will involve Josh Howard and have a bad contract coming back to Dallas.
James Harden SG 19yo , ARI So.
The perfect pick for Dallas in this draft is someone who can contribute immediately while Dirk is still in his prime and someone whose ceiling is high enough that they can be leaned on to carry the team more and more with each year. To me, James Harden fits the bill perfectly. A prototypical scorer who can shoot and get to the basket, I think Harden will be able to offensively take over the occasional game as a rookie and only get better.
Won't last past the sixth pick.
Current NBA Comp: Brandon Roy in Baron Davis body.
Ricky Rubio PG 18yo, Spain
You might have heard of him. This is the sexy pick. Mark Cuban admitted that part of the Kidd trade was to get people talking about the Mavericks again, and bringing in Rubio would do that and then some.
He's almost already a superstar, but he'll require a lot of patience. I'm not sure Dallas has that. Trading up for Rubio would send the signal that Dallas was all but giving up on 2009, wasting another year of Dirk, and getting ready for 2010 and onwards. It would be a new era and a huge gamble -- exciting though.
Won't last past the sixth -- probably top 4.
Current NBA Comp: I don't know, some sort of Kevin Martin / Steve Nash love child.
Jordan Hill PF 21yo, ARI Jr.
Dallas has been rumored to be interested in Hill so this is most realistic of the three. I don't think he has quite the potential of someone like Kenyon Martin, but Hill is pretty close to the athletic, tough big man that they have seemingly never had and always admired,
Capable of playing center or PF, he could be a perfect change of pace backup to Dampier and a great floormate with Dirk. With Hill, Dallas could even go big for once playing a Dirk/Hill/Dampier trio. If Kidd hangs around, we'd probably be treated to more of those Kidd/Hollins style connections we all loved so much.
Won't fall past 10.
Current NBA Comp: Poor mans Amare Stoudemire.