Bucks on Star SearchJune 27, 2012
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The Bucks have the 12th pick in Thursday night’s NBA Draft. The chances are decent that they will find a nice player. The chances are not great that they will find a star. But it’s possible. It’s a gamble when you pass on a steady role player for a boom-or-bust type but I think the Bucks need to be willing to roll the dice.
General Manager John Hammond and Scott Skiles are in the last year of their contracts. While an extension might have been premature, the organization opens itself up for an awkward, lame-duck year if things don’t go well. They are lucky that Hammond is a decent man because a more selfish and egotistical person would worry just about NOW with little regard for the long-term. He would worry simply about keeping his job and not be concerned with five or six years down the road. Hammond says he will always do what is best for the organization and I believe him.
To the specifics…I like both John Henson and Tyler Zeller from North Carolina. I think both of them will be gone, Henson to Detroit at number nine and Zeller to New Orleans at number 10. I also like Austin Rivers (Doc’s son) but I believe he knows he will be gone by 12 and that’s why he didn’t come to Milwaukee for a workout. Jeremy Lamb of UConn came to Milwaukee for a visit and not a workout. My guess is he will be gone but he wanted to protect himself is he slides because of an injury.
I am impressed with Terrence Ross and he genuinely seems to want to come here. But I am perplexed how Washington can have possibly two first round picks (Ross and Tony Wroten) and not even make the NCAA tournament in a weak PAC-12. Ross’ college coach was former Bucks guard Lorenzo Romar so he likely put in a good word for the city. Ross would be a solid pick.
Meyers Leonard from Illinois is young and raw and the Bucks might take him because they need size. Yes, Chris Kaman and Spencer Hawes are free agents. But you don’t know for sure what they’ll cost and you can’t be sure you’ll land them. While you know what you’re going to get in Zeller because he played four years at North Carolina, Leonard might mature into an excellent player. He might also be a bust. His college coach, Bruce Weber, had to threaten him with benching to light a fire in Leonard.
I wouldn’t argue if the Bucks take him because Leonard has a nice touch, a possible upside and it’s never foolish to gamble on size. Ask the Pacers. Roy Hibbert turned out fine.
Terrence Jones of Kentucky and Quincy Miller of Baylor were both in for workouts, but 12 seems a bit high for them. Fab Melo of Syracuse has only played the game for six years. He would be big gamble if the Bucks expect immediate production, but his size and athletic ability are tempting.
The Bucks might take a flyer on somebody I didn’t even mention. This is all guesswork.
I’m not a scout and I’m not an “expert”. But I do have an opinion. I would select Perry Jones III out of Baylor. The reason is he could be a star. He also could get you fired so it’s easy to spout off from the safety of a keyboard. My butt is not on the line. If I’m wrong, I won’t be fired. But I believe the goal should be to win a title. Don’t laugh. I know the odds are astronomical against the Bucks, but I refuse to be happy with just making the playoffs and winning an occasional round. I don’t want to be the Washington Generals. Dream big. Yes, you might fail, but at least fail trying to reach for the sky. With fans needing to be won over for a new arena, the stakes are high. Too high to just settle.
UPDATE: With the Bucks trade Tuesday for Samuel Dalembert, the Bucks will now draft #14. I expect them to take a wing player since center has now been addressed.