Let’s just get it out of the way now: I don’t follow college basketball. Every year, a new line of freshman enter the league and I think, “It would really be helpful if I knew anything about these guys.” Then a squirrel passes outside my window or a dust particle hitting the sunlight catches my eye and I’ve already forgotten what I was just thinking about. Ah well. Let me just spin the new Adele album on the ol’ record player and prepare for the draft. This year, I thought instead of pretending I knew what I was talking about, I’d go the other way with it and shine a spotlight on how uninformed I am by keeping a log of the thoughts I thought throughout the first 12 picks. Yeah, I could go to 11 pm CST like the broadcast said it was scheduled to go, but I knew by those 40-something picks, I’d be forced to spell a ton of Lithuanian names and I just wasn’t up for it. Let Spinal Tap go to 11. Me, I’m stopping at 12 (if that makes sense).
So here we go. Your 2012 NBA Draft!
6:32 – Oh-em-gee, ESPN is playing Adele just like me! Apparently, the ad wizards over at Disney wanted to reach the mighty, hoops fan with a penchant for retro alternative soul from the UK demographic. There are probably a lot of us out there.
6:33 – Stern walks out onto the floor being booed by the New Jersey crowd like he was the San Quentin warden. I don’t understand why a group of people enamored enough with the sport to buy a ticket to watch teenagers in suits wear awkward caps would boo the guy that made it all happen. It could be the impending lockout, but it’s more likely that people from Newark would boo Santa Claus while he was shimmying back up their roof.
6:34 – Stern congratulates the Dallas Mavericks on their championship win, and when the Jersey crowd goes silent, he comments on how good the crowd is. Had he congratulated Jason Kidd and the Dallas Mavericks for their championship win, we would have gotten to see three of Stern’s assistants trying to figure out a) how to remove a tie from one’s anus and b) how they were able to get it up there without unknotting it first.
6:36 – The shiny head quotient in the Bilas, Van Gundy, Barry, Scott pundit quartet is strong.
6:39 – The Cleveland Cavaliers pick Kyrie Irving from Duke University. Honestly, has any league ever had as many notable Irvin or Irvings in its history? Not even close. Somewhere the Clippers organization is putting together that they packaged Baron Davis and the rights to Irving for Mo Williams and, uh, lemme see here. I know I have the paper with the the other guy who went to L.A. in exchange for … ah! Here we go. Jamario Moon. Yup. L.A. could have had a Gordon, Griffin, Irving nucleus for the next 4+ seasons, and instead have EMo Williams and something called Jamario. Classic Clippers!
6:42 - Irving’s father is named Dredrick. Dredrick! There’s no way that guy isn’t seeing the final Harry Potter movie.
6:43 – “You can’t get a veteran in an NBA draft” – Jay Bilas, forgetting that Greg Oden will turn 70 later this year.
6:45 – The Minnesota Timberwolves select Derrick Williams from the University of Arizona. Speaking of Jamario Moon! Why the long face Derrick? This brings about Bilas’ first mention of wingspan. Everybody drink! He’s a 6-foot-8 efficient scorer who doesn’t rebound or defend much, who is probably more of a three than a four. Ugh. Williams, Michael Beasley, Anthony Randolph, Martell Webster … right off, I don’t love Williams as a fantasy option next year already.
6:50 – The Utah Jazz select Enes Kanter from Istanbul, Turkey and the University of Kentucky. Well, Stern, which one is it? Is he from Turkey or Kentucky. Can’t be from both. I don’t know anything about him, but the fact that he’s clearly just replacing Mehmet Okur as the Turkish quota of the Jazz makes me … I dunno, like him more, I guess.
6:52 – Kanter is the third Turkish player after Hedo Turkoglu in 2000 and Okur in 2001 to be taken in the first round of the NBA Draft. Kenyon Martin was the No. 1 draft pick in 2000 and Kwame Brown was the No. 1 pick a year later. These were known as two of the worst draft classes of all time. Good luck, Enes!
6:54 – ESPN really needs to consider turning on the pundits’ mics so that everyone in the arena can hear them, if for no other reason, just to see the reaction of the angry mothers turning around and screaming, “shut the f%@$ up!” every five minutes whenever Jon Barry talks about how weak this draft class is.
6:56 – JVG is trying out his Seinfeld material, “What’s the deal with the front office clapping after their pick is announced? They already knew who they were picking!” Mercifully, Cleveland’s second pick is coming up.
6:56 – The Cleveland Cavaliers pick Tristan Thompson from Toronto, Canada and the University of Texas. 2012: the year of the 6-foot-8 power forward. My only question is whether or not he’ll be able to grow out those Anderson Varejao big curls.
6:57 – Can we be done with the Cavaliers now?
7:01 – I’m hoping for at least one notable trade between now and 11 pm. Seriously, why the heck is this thing starting at 7:30 on the East Coast? People in L.A. are just going to be getting out of their Botox appointments (or whatever those people do) by the time the Cavs make their twelfth selection in this draft. They’re drafting after every three picks, right? On a side note, I told myself I’d be aligned with Cavs fans up to and including the NBA Finals, but as soon as that was over, I would no longer want to hear about how LeBron made them all cuckolds. It’s only been mentioned three times in the first half hour, but I’m over it. You have Kyrie Irving, who seems like a Tyreke Evans-type of player. He also seems like someone my grandmother is going to call Carrie Irwin no matter how hard I try to correct her. Kinda like how she still talks about that little Iver Allison from the Philadelphia 76ers.
7:02 – The Toronto Raptors select Jonas Valanciunas from Lithuania. Uh, okay. It was kinda worth it just to see Stern have to pronounce a long string of difficult international words. You gotta love a team that gets hammered for choosing a 7-footer labeled soft and then decides, “Screw it! Double-down! Double-down!”
7:07 – The Washington Wizards select Jan Vesely from the Czech Republic. The best part of this pick? Everyone got to see him deep kiss his super tall girlfriend. He’s known as the European Blake Griffin, I’d be super jazzed if he’s just the white Javale McGee. I’m calling it now, John Wall will lead the league in alley-oop assists this season. Irving will lead the rookie class and Chris Paul will lead the, Don’t-You-EVEN-Dare-Forget-About-Me class.
7:09 – A recent trade sent Corey Maggette to Charlotte along with the next pick. It doesn’t matter who they get here, this team ain’t doing nothing next season. Nothing. Milwaukee, on the other hand … well, we’ll wait a bit. I don’t want to give anything away.
7:10 – A ton of Euro players so far, which is fine except that they’re all too nervous to show off with flashy, obnoxious suits – which is, of course, the third best part of the draft behind exciting 11th hour trades from teams desperate to ruin their franchise and bored New York/New Jersey fans who entertain themselves by booing anything that moves.
7:11 – The Sacramento Kings (Charlotte Bobcats) select Bismack Biyombo from the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Bismack! BIZ-MACK! Let me clear my throat, Bismacky! I haven’t been this immediately enamored with an athlete for reasons that have nothing to do with his athletic ability since Ben Wallace‘s afro.
7:13 – Five of the first seven picks were foreign-born. I’m not sure what this means, but I’m betting Lou Dobbs has something to say about all the American jobs the league is losing.
7:17 – Here comes the Commish. He looks tired, like he goes backstage and sucks down a quart of Gatorade like those old commercials with Jordan. Just a bunch of dudes playing playground hoops with a bigass cooler full of Gatorade. No biggie. Yeah, the cooler cost $70 to fill with Gatorade. No biggie. Yeah, MJ is just pouring that shizz down his face. No biggie. Anyway, Stern’s just praying the Pistons pick Jim Smith from UCLA instead of the next hot prospect to come out of Eastern Europe with a name that sounds like a Seuss-rhyme actors use to limber up their lips.
7:17 - The Detroit Pistons select Brandon Knight from the University of Kentucky. Close! I loved him when he sang with Bel Biv DeVoe.
7:19 – I’ve already forgotten Brandon Knight.
7:23 – The Charlotte Bobcats select Kemba Walker from the University of Connecticut. Most other drafts, this guy would have the best name. But not in Bismacky Draft 2011! No, sir! That said, what the Bobcats lack in scoring ability, they’ll gain in awesome name-ness.
7:24 – Honestly, is Walker going to backup Augustin? That doesn’t seem right. Eesh, this team is going to be bad, although Bilas really liked that pick. My girlfriend really liked it too because Walker is short and cried on his way up the stage. I guess she can relate. So that’s nice.
7:27 – What is a “Jimmer” and is it edible?
7:28 – The Bucks are choosing for the Kings because of the Maggette trade that sent Beno Udrih and Stephen Jackson to Milwaukee, Maggette and Biyombo to Charlotte and a fair amount of crap to Sacramento. Barry just alerted me that Jimmer was the top scorer in the nation last season and would be a great fit with Evans in Sac-town’s backcourt. then the camera cut to a shot of a clean-cut white kid who looks to have a degree in finance. This is a mixture that, when combined, don’t make for a long NBA career. When will Marcus Thornton get some love from you people? Seriously, the 10th pick in the draft led the NCAA in scoring last season? This is why I can’t stand college hoops.
7:29 - The Milwaukee Bucks (Sacramento Kings) select Jimmer Fredette from BYU. He’s from Utah!?! His last name sounds French!?! Aw, COME on! This pick has Tyler Hansbrough or J.J. Redick written all over it. You mean because all three are likely to start out slow as reserves for a couple seasons only to eventually find their place and really assist their respective ball clubs into gradually improving? Um, sure. we’ll go with that.
7:30 – T.J. Fredette and his kiddie contract are enough to make me root against Jimmer his entire career. Or at least refuse to ever call him Jimmer.
7:33 – Stu Scott, “Jimmer and T.J. used to go to the local prison in Glens Falls and play pickup ball against the inmates. His first game, he dropped 40 points on them.” Whoa, whoa, whoa. What? I have so many follow-up questions, Stu. You can’t just move on from this! Jim is 22 years old, when was he playing pickup games in jail? Do New York prisons just let kids walk into the prison yards and hoop it up? This feels like a story that has gotten out of hand. And even if it really is true, way to be an jerk, kid. “Boom! I just dropped 40 on you, I get to leave and you don’t and when I head on out past those gate doors, I’m going to get paid millions to do what I did here today! Glens Falls, baby! Glens Falls!” Isn’t this equivalent to LeBron’s “You’ll all wake up tomorrow and still be losers” sentiment that followed his Finals loss? Yeah, it’s official, I don’t like Jim Fredette.
7:34 – According to ESPN, the Kings will be playing Thornton at SF, which makes as much sense as going to the local prison to shoot around.
7:35 – The Golden State Warriors select Klay Thompson from Washington State University. Can we just see old footage of Mychal Thompson? I mean, it’s the Warriors. What can we really hope to learn about Thompson’s affect on Golden State? He’s going to play 15 mpgs on this team backing up Dorell Wright and Monta Ellis’ recently vacated position.
7:36 - Mychal Thompson clips! Booyah!
7:38 – I miss the Cavaliers already. And I have mixed feelings about ending this live blog on the Jazz.
7:41 – The Utah Jazz select Alec Burks from the University of Colorado. In the words of Steve Buscemi in Fargo, “Silence. Total f—ing silence.” If you had told me the Jazz were going to pick a kid from Colorado name Alec and asked me to guess which of the rookies he was, I’m 97.4 percent sure I would have pointed to a picture of Jim Fredette. Either that, or I would have just Googled a picture of Gordon Hayward and pointed to that.
7:42 – Bilas tells me Burks needs work on his “dribble game,” which seems to be as good of a place as any to end this blog. It’s been fun. Now it’s time to research how these dudes will fit (or not fit) into their respective rosters.
Wait, wait! Before I go, I had to comment on the awkward interview with Golden State’s new head coach Mark Jackson. Firstly, I’m pretty sure Jackson fell asleep in front of the camera five minutes before he went on and was awakened just as the camera cut to him. Secondly, Mark Jackson did not guarantee his team would make the playoffs, despite the fact that he said they would. There’s a difference between saying it and guaranteeing it. The difference being that one is confident and the other is bluster. Total sissy move. Be an Atheist if that’s how you feel, what’s all this Agnostic nonsense. Thirdly, Jeff Van Gundy wants to push Jackson off a tall building. I can’t prove it, but I just know it.
Okay, now I’m out. BISMACK!