OrlandoMagic.com's 2012 Mock Draft


OrlandoMagic.com's Dan Savage and Josh Cohen and Orlando Magic Radio Producer Jake Chapman predict the 2012 NBA Draft and analyze how all these prospects will perform in the NBA.

While, naturally, there will be plenty of trades on draft night that make it practically impossible to nail down exactly where draftees will play next season. But, Savage, Cohen and Chapman offer their opinions on which prospects will be chosen in the entire First Round.

There are three performance categories in which we assessed each prospect by:

SUCCESS: This player is a lock to be a good player or even a great player at an appropriate draft spot. If he is projected to be a top five pick, he will certainly be an All-Star caliber player. If he is projected to be somewhere between six and 10, I am confident he will be a legitimate starter with the chance of being a difference maker. And if he is chosen after 10th, he will be a steal.

POTENTIAL: This player has a chance to be a good pro, but may get drafted too high. If he is projected to be a top five pick, he will be a disappointment because he won’t be an All-Star player. If he is projected to be somewhere between six and 10, he will be viewed as someone too inconsistent. And if he is chosen after 10th, this will have been an acceptable choice because he provides just enough to last in the league a while.

BUST: This player will likely fail to sustain a spot in the NBA. He just seems either undersized, not superior at any particular skill or just didn’t impress me enough in college. He may have potential, but he is not a player I see lasting in the league more than five years.  



1) NEW ORLEANS HORNETS

 

 

 
PICK
PROJECTION
REASON

Cohen


Anthony Davis


POTENTIAL

Not ready to declare him a guaranteed perennial All-Star because of several offensive deficiencies including a shoddy jump shot and substandard post moves

Chapman


Anthony Davis


SUCCESS
Davis could be a hall of famer. He was a late bloomer, playing guard as recently as his sophomore year of high school. That leaves a 6-11 beanpole with soft hands, good lateral quickness, touch around the basket, and even a bit of a handle. Then there’s his all-world shot-blocking. Goodnight 

Savage


Anthony Davis


SUCCESS

In a draft that’s not loaded with top-tier elite talent, Anthony Davis provides the Hornets with a shot at a legitimate superstar. Sure, he needs some work both physically and in some areas fundamentally, but what rookie doesn’t?    

 

2) CHARLOTTE BOBCATS



 
PICK
PROJECTION
REASON

Cohen


Harrison Barnes


POTENTIAL

Expect him to be effective off screens, but needs to learn to create his own shots and be more explosive at attacking the rim

Chapman


Michael Kidd-Gilchrist


SUCCESS

This pick could easily be traded, and it’s impossible to guess when MJ’s calling the shots, but MKG to me is by far the second-best player available in this year’s draft. He’s got an infectious motor that can uplift an entire team, and I think he’ll be an all-star someday

Savage


Thomas Robinson


SUCCESS

While there are a lot of things that Robinson does well, the concern with him, at least offensively, is that he doesn’t do anything great. Still with his tremendous heart, athleticism and wingspan, he’s a lock to be in the Bobcats starting lineup for a long time



3) WASHINGTON WIZARDS

 

 

 
PICK
PROJECTION
REASON

Cohen


Bradley Beal


SUCCESS

Teaming with an explosive and express point guard would be perfect for Beal, who would thrive off John Wall’s dribble penetration and kick-outs for open outside jumpers

Chapman


Bradley Beal


POTENTIAL

Beal has garnered comparisons to Ray Allen with his smooth jumper, and he has wowed team personnel in his pre-draft interviews. He led the six major conferences in rebounding for a guard during his freshman season at UF. But is Washington the right fit with John Wall running the backcourt, and can the 6-3ish Beal get that jumper off in the league?

Savage


Bradley Beal


POTENTIAL

His lack of height and inconsistent shot are definitely concerns. But his spot-up shooting and quality passing from the two-spot make him a nice fit for the Wizards here



4) CLEVELAND CAVALIERS



 
PICK
PROJECTION
REASON

Cohen


Michael Kidd-Gilchrist


SUCCESS

Love his winning attitude and though he isn’t necessarily excellent at any specific trait, MKG’s athleticism and commitment to defense will catapult him into a very good pro. It would be fitting for Gilchrist to partner up with his former high school teammate, Kyrie Irving

Chapman


Andre Drummond


POTENTIAL

With just 7.5% body fat and a height/athleticism combo that reminds some of Dwight Howard, Drummond could be a top 5 center in the league one day. But he’s unproven, his resume consisting of one underwhelming season at UCONN. I think the Cavs swing for the fences here, well aware that they’re still 2-3 years away from contention

Savage


Harrison Barnes


SUCCESS

While it will be hard for Cavs fans to get the bitter taste of LeBron James winning his first NBA title out of their mouths, the fact that they’ll be able to have Kyrie Irving and Harrison Barnes – two of league’s smartest young players – in their starting lineup will help in the healing process



5) SACRAMENTO KINGS

 

 

 
PICK
PROJECTION
REASON

Cohen


Thomas Robinson


BUST

Doesn’t excel in the post, doesn’t have a reliable mid-range jumper and isn’t intimidating defensively. Like his strength, but doesn’t carry enough skills to become All-Star caliber

Chapman


Thomas Robinson


BUST

Robinson will rebound, defend and lead in the locker room, which frees up DeMarcus Cousins to do what he does best, score. But there are still potential all-stars in the green room, and Robinson won’t ever be one

Savage


Michael Kidd-Gilchrist


SUCCESS

It’s possible when looking back at this year’s draft that we all say MKG went too high. However, his fearlessness in attacking the rack, immense desire to win and ability to defend make up for his weak jump shot



6) PORTLAND TRAIL BLAZERS

 

 

 
PICK
PROJECTION
REASON

Cohen


Andre Drummond


POTENTIAL

Could become a top three center in the NBA if he bulks up and develops enhanced post moves. But a disappointing freshman season in school and dubious work ethic makes me cringe

Chapman


Harrison Barnes


SUCCESS

Portland would pounce on Barnes before Commissioner Stern puts them on the clock. Barnes wowed everyone at the combine. He’s 6-8, he recorded the 4th highest vertical EVER recorded at the NBA combine, and he matched Thomas Robinson in the bench press. Frankly, he’s a beast

Savage


Andre Drummond


POTENTIAL

If Portland is smart, they’ll roll the dice with one of the most physically and athletically dominant players in this year’s draft class. While his skill is undeniable, he doesn’t receive a guaranteed success label due to his underwhelming freshman showing and the fact that he’ll have to deal with the injury history of Portland’s organization



7) GOLDEN STATE WARRIORS

 

 

 
PICK
PROJECTION
REASON

Cohen


Jeremy Lamb


BUST

Too lanky to guard the many elite shooting guards such as Kobe Bryant, Dwyane Wade and Manu Ginobili and doesn’t get to the free throw line often. If the Warriors do select him, Klay Thompson’s expected rise will deny Lamb from being a prime attraction

Chapman


Dion Waiters


BUST

Waiters’ athleticism and defense is appealing to many and the rumor that he has a lottery promise has pervaded draft news for the past week or two. I’m never sold on a top-10 pick who didn’t even start in college (see: Marvin Williams) but I think GS would like to put the shifty Waiters next to the smooth shooting Klay Thompson on the wings and see what can happen

Savage


Terrence Ross


POTENTIAL

He had some extremely exhilarating stretches at the University of Washington and has the chance to be one of the better shooting guards in this year’s class. But at times, even at the college level, he disappeared, which make him far from a sure thing



8) TORONTO RAPTORS

 

 

 
PICK
PROJECTION
REASON

Cohen


Austin Rivers


SUCCESS

Shines in isolation and in pick-and-rolls and has proven to be extremely clutch. Also an intense competitor with room to develop into one of the league’s best pull-up jump shooters

Chapman


Damian Lillard


POTENTIAL

The Weber St. product is seen by many as the best PG in this year’s class, and with Jose Calderon’s $10.5 million coming off the books next summer, the Raps need their PG of the future. Plus taking a Weber St. kid and putting him in Canada just feels right for some reason

Savage


Dion Waiters


POTENTIAL

After canceling his remaining workouts, it's rumored that Waiters had a promise to go in the draft lottery. I think his guarantee came courtesy of Toronto



9) DETROIT PISTONS

 

 

 
PICK
PROJECTION
REASON

Cohen


Terrence Ross


POTENTIAL

Didn’t get enough of a chance to showcase his skills in college, but seems to have the proficiency to transform into a reliable player on both ends of the floor

Chapman


Jeremy Lamb


POTENTIAL

Lamb has an excellent jumper and a smooth handle, not to mention a downright kooky 7-0 wingspan atop his roughly 6-5 frame. He was as important as any player not named Kemba Walker to UCONN’s title run in 2011

Savage


Meyers Leonard


BUST

With size always at a premium, the Pistons reach for a center here. His lack of bulk and unpolished offensive game are causes for concern. However, height can't be taught and as a result he'll have a place in the league



10) NEW ORLEANS HORNETS

 

 

 
PICK
PROJECTION
REASON

Cohen


Meyers Leonard


BUST

Not doubting his potential to be a dependable role player, but considering he could be a top 10 pick, Leonard doesn’t appear to have the strength or skills to be dominant down low

Chapman


Austin Rivers


POTENTIAL

The kid certainly has the pedigree, the moxie, and the jumper, but can he finish among the trees in the NBA, and will he outwork everyone, or anyone?

Savage


Damian Lillard


POTENTIAL

By spot No. 10 in the draft, the Hornets have done a nice job of rounding out their roster. Lillard’s scoring ability adds another dimension to New Orleans’ lineup



 

11) PORTLAND TRAIL BLAZERS



 
PICK
PROJECTION
REASON

Cohen


Damian Lillard


POTENTIAL

Never a fan of shoot-first point guards, but Lillard has a chance to evolve an almost unstoppable force because of his entire offensive repertoire

Chapman


Meyers Leonard


BUST

Leonard has seen his stock skyrocket in weeks past as teams become enamored with his quick feet and 7-1 size. But I’ve seen Leonard make too many boneheaded plays to want him on my team

Savage


Jeremy Lamb


POTENTIAL

Lamb has the natural gifts to be able to score in a variety of ways. He still needs some polishing and to add some size 



 

12) MILWAUKEE BUCKS



 
PICK
PROJECTION
REASON

Cohen


Tyler Zeller


BUST

Was able to utilize his size and soft touch around the rim in college, but in the pros, Zeller doesn’t possess the strength and bully attitude to overawe opponents down low

Chapman


John Henson


SUCCESS

Rail thin but an instinctively good defender, Henson needs to add some bulk to realize his potential. But he works hard and he has a lot of natural ability that can’t be taught

Savage


Tyler Zeller


BUST

Milwaukee gets enamored with the opportunity to add Zeller’s combination of height and athleticism to its roster. However, the should be more worried about his lack of strength



 

13) PHOENIX SUNS

 

 

 
PICK
PROJECTION
REASON

Cohen


Jared Sullinger


POTENTIAL

If picked in the top 10, he may be too much of a risk with the back injury and limited athleticism. But because of his strength and footwork, Sullinger could be a steal at this stage of the draft

Chapman


Jared Sullinger


POTENTIAL

Sully’s stock is plummeting thanks to medical red flags from NBA physicians that suggest he has some serious back problems. But he has top 10 talent and if Phoenix’s crack medical staff can get him right, it may be a great value pick

Savage


Austin Rivers


SUCCESS

While some people label him as a two-guard, I see Rivers as the heir to Steve Nash’s throne, running deadly pick-and-rolls with Marcin Gortat for years to come



 

14) HOUSTON ROCKETS

 

 

 
PICK
PROJECTION
REASON

Cohen


Moe Harkless


BUST

Unfurnished and too experimental to be picked this high, but as a result of his length and agility, scouts are salivating over Harkless’ potential

Chapman


Perry Jones


SUCCESS

PJ3 is perhaps the most enigmatic of all entrants. He’s 6-11 and he can really score, but sometimes he’s just too passive on the floor. But he has top-5 upside, and I think Houston takes a shot

Savage


Arnett Moutlrie


POTENTIAL

The Rockets can’t risk passing on his combination of size and strength 

 

15) PHILADELPHIA 76ers



 
PICK
PROJECTION
REASON

Cohen


John Henson


BUST

Likely will get bullied in the paint and too frequently relies on finesse rather than physical tools. Also, Henson’s unreliable free throw shooting is always a cause of concern

Chapman


Terrence Jones


POTENTIAL

Another guy with a lot of upside, Jones proved he wanted to win by going back to Kentucky for his sophomore season. Philly could use some fresh legs in the front court    

Savage


John Henson


POTENTIAL

At the very least, the Sixers add a quality defender and solid rebounder to their roster  

 

16) HOUSTON ROCKETS



 
PICK
PROJECTION
REASON

Cohen


Royce White


SUCCESS

Playing at Iowa State didn’t allow White to get widespread recognition, but he is the big secret of the draft. Admire his all-around skills and for proof he is the total package, White led ISU in points, rebounds, assists, steals and blocks his freshman season. And he will get over that fear of flying

Chapman


Marques Teague


SUCCESS

Teague’s older brother Jeff will show him the way, he has a killer first step, and he’s just 19. Goran Dragic may not return in Houston, and Teague can play behind Kyle Lowry while he gets his feet wet        

Savage


Kendall Marshall


POTENTIAL

After securing size, the Rockets take the best point guard available in Marshall. He's a natural floor general and gives the insurance behind Kyle Lowry   

 

17) DALLAS MAVERICKS

 

 

 
PICK
PROJECTION
REASON

Cohen


Dion Waiters


BUST

Way too undersized to be a prolific shooting guard and not quick or deceptive enough to be a legitimate floor general. Respect his willingness to play away from the ball, but Waiters doesn’t attack the rim enough

Chapman


Tyler Zeller


POTENTIAL

Dallas gets good value here, as Zeller will do whatever it takes to stay in the league for 10-12 years. He does nothing great, but everything well, and when you’re a center, that’s good enough           


Savage


Marquis Teague


POTENTIAL

The Mavs would love to have Marshall be Jason Kidd's replacement, but instead they'll have to settle with Teague. His explosive quickness and size make him a solid selection    

 

18) MINNESOTA TIMBERWOLVES



 
PICK
PROJECTION
REASON

Cohen


Will Barton


POTENTIAL

Can play multiple positions, excels in transition, which would be perfect for the Wolves and Ricky Rubio, and has a very lethal jump shot. Just not currently strong enough to be an immediate help to an NBA team

Chapman


Terrence Ross


POTENTIAL

The Wolves would be overjoyed to snag Ross here. The 6-7 winger from Washington can leap like a frog and he can shoot the rock as well. Needs to develop other areas of his game but the Wolves would love a shooting guard              


Savage


Moe Harkless


POTENTIAL

At this stage in the draft, the Timberwolves are happy to nab someone with the size and potential upside of Harkless  

 

19) ORLANDO MAGIC

 

 

 
PICK
PROJECTION
REASON

Cohen


Perry Jones


SUCCESS

About a year ago, some thought Jones could be the No. 1 overall pick in the draft because of his versatility and athleticism. Though unpolished and while some are concerned about his work ethic, Jones is a steal at pick No. 19

Chapman


Kendall Marshall


SUCCESS

He’d be the heir apparent to Jameer Nelson. Although snagging Marshall this late might be wishful thinking, he could start immediately should Jameer opt out next week, or ideally he could back Jameer up while he develops                  


Savage


Terrence Jones


POTENTIAL

Although his on-court awareness leaves something to be desired, he possesses top 10 talent. The Magic hope they can get the most out of him here

 

20) DENVER NUGGETS

 

 

 
PICK
PROJECTION
REASON

Cohen


Andrew Nicholson


SUCCESS

Love his efficiency and dangerous turnaround jumper. Nicholson may not be the biggest power forward out there, but he has a high basketball IQ that will allow him to compete against anyone

Chapman


Royce White


SUCCESS

Royce White is a point-forward with an anxiety issue and a serious fear of flying. Not your average scouting report, but he can really play. A coach like George Karl would be perfect while White adjusts to life as a pro                 


Savage


Perry Jones


POTENTIAL

Denver continues to add size with explosive ability here by grabbing Perry Jones. Now, it's a matter of getting him to reach his ceiling instead of falling into the basement

 

21) BOSTON CELTICS



 
PICK
PROJECTION
REASON

Cohen


Fab Melo


POTENTIAL

Very imposing and could turn out to be one of the best shot-blockers in the NBA. Melo, however, is unpredictable offensively and doesn’t seem to grasp the game well yet

Chapman


Quincy Miller


POTENTIAL

Miller is a lot like his college teammate PJ3, there’s enough talent there that he could be an all-star, but will it ever fully develop? He tore an ACL his senior year of high school, and so we might have only seen a fraction of what he can do, I think Danny Ainge takes a shot                   


Savage


Royce White


BUST

After reportedly being diagnosed with an anxiety disorder and a fear of flying, some scouts have been turned off by White. However, with back-to-back picks, Boston takes a chance on him

 

22) BOSTON CELTICS

 

 

 
PICK
PROJECTION
REASON

Cohen


Kevin Murphy


SUCCESS

One of my sleepers in this year’s draft. Murphy is a scoring machine and has the range to be one of the best 3-point shooters in the NBA

Chapman


Andrew Nicholson


POTENTIAL

Teams love the St. Bonnies’ product for his ability to spread the floor and still bang inside. He’s drawn comparisons to David West, who is one of the most underrated power forwards in the game, and who was targeted by Danny Ainge in free agency last summer                     


Savage


Fab Melo


BUST

The Celtics need size and Melo has it. Unfortunately, he lacks an offensive game to go along with it

 

23) ATLANTA HAWKS



 
PICK
PROJECTION
REASON

Cohen


Kris Joseph


POTENTIAL

Very unselfish and willing to be an effective role player, which is imperative for any player being taken this late in the First Round. Joseph may not be able to create his own scoring, but can certainly come in and hit some shots off the bench

Chapman


Fab Melo


SUCCESS

Melo is a fantastic defending big, and he could develop into a shot blocking force. Atlanta finally lands a center, and he could be a really good one someday                       


Savage


Andrew Nicholson


POTENTIAL

The Hawks have a lot of long-term questions about the interior of their roster. They hope Nicholson gives them some answers

 

24) CLEVELAND CAVALIERS



 
PICK
PROJECTION
REASON

Cohen


Arnett Moultrie


BUST

Most assume he will be a borderline lottery pick, but despite being 6’11, Moultrie tends to be caught in between positions and just isn’t gifted enough to adapt on the fly to what’s needed for the team he goes to

Chapman


Moe Harkless


POTENTIAL

The Cavs want to build an OKC-like core around Kyrie Irving and Harkless could prove to be a gem. Still raw offensively, Harkless is a fantastic athlete with great size and length, who can actually put the ball on the floor a bit. The Cavs would love to take a shot on him                           


Savage


Jared Sullinger


BUST

This pick has bust written all over it. Injury concerns and questions regarding work ethic are never a good mix

 

25) MEMPHIS GRIZZLIES

 

 

 
PICK
PROJECTION
REASON

Cohen


Tony Wroten


POTENTIAL

Some think he could be the next Rajon Rondo because of his creativity and ability to always put pressure on the defense. A substandard jumper, however, has teams hesitant to take a chance on him

Chapman


Festus Ezeli


POTENTIAL

Remember Hasheem Thabeet? Memphis tries again for Dikembe Mutombo 2.0, only this time they wait until the appropriate draft window. Ezeli stays in Tennessee                              


Savage


Evan Fournier


POTENTIAL

Although he probably stays overseas for another year or two, Fournier is a crafty guard with a great first step that can score in a variety of ways. That mix is too much for Memphis to pass up

 

26) INDIANA PACERS

 

 

 
PICK
PROJECTION
REASON

Cohen


Kim English


SUCCESS

Any team who needs an outside threat should consider English, who proved at Missouri he could be a lethal 3-point specialist 

Chapman


Tony Wroten


POTENTIAL

Wroten has drawn comparisons to Rajon Rondo in that he’s a long, athletic point guard with the passing and handle to succeed in the NBA, but his jumper isn’t pretty. If Wroten becomes half the player Rondo is, it’s worth a shot for Indy at this point of the draft                                  


Savage


Doron Lamb


POTENTIAL

He performed night in and night out on one of the most stacked teams in the country. If he can find a spot in the right system, he could be a solid player in the league

 

27) MIAMI HEAT



 
PICK
PROJECTION
REASON

Cohen


Kendall Marshall


POTENTIAL

Will probably get drafted much higher, but very few teams are in need of a starting point guard. The Heat, though just winning a title, may want to upgrade at this spot and Marshall would be a great addition     

Chapman


Draymond Green


POTENTIAL

A winner in every sense of the word, Green can slide in immediately to a backup role at the 3/4 in Miami. Green will be ready to play 15 minutes a night from day one, and the big three will love playing with a passer like Draymond                                     


Savage


Quincy Miller


SUCCESS

If he puts in the work with NBA trainers to get back the speed and explosiveness he lost following ACL surgery, he could be a steal. Being with perennial All-Stars LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh will motivate the youngster

 

28) OKLAHOMA CITY THUNDER

 

 

 
PICK
PROJECTION
REASON

Cohen


John Jenkins


SUCCESS

One of the best shooters available and because of that, Jenkins will probably last in the league a long time. Not exceedingly athletic, but that is unnecessary if he can spot up and drill open jumpers         

Chapman


Evan Fournier


SUCCESS

The French youngster might stay overseas a year or two, but he’s young and very confident. He could develop into a very, very good pro                                        


Savage


Will Barton


POTENTIAL

The Thunder continue to add depth. And with all the success they've had in the draft, there's no reason to think it should stop now, even if the Magic snagged their assistant GM

 

29) CHICAGO BULLS

 

 

 
PICK
PROJECTION
REASON

Cohen


Doron Lamb


BUST

A known name because of the school he played for and the teammates he had, but not enough of a playmaker or defender to be a valuable role player in the NBA             

Chapman


Will Barton


POTENTIAL

The Memphis SG can fill it up, but he shoots too much and needs to bulk up. If Coach Thibodeau can get him to buy in, he may be the 2-guard they’re looking for                                            


Savage


John Jenkins


SUCCESS

The Bulls get a steal for their system here by drafting one of the top shooters in the nation. Although he lacks explosiveness, he won't need any playing alongside Derrick Rose

 

30) GOLDEN STATE WARRIORS

 

 

 
PICK
PROJECTION
REASON

Cohen


Henry Sims


POTENTIAL

There just aren’t many centers available and Sims is just an atypical burly big man who can provide valuable minutes when starters get into foul trouble                 

Chapman


Jeff Taylor


POTENTIAL

The Vandy SF is a great defender, and when the draft gets on, grabbing one-trick ponies is a proven approach                                                


Savage


Tony Wroten


POTENTIAL

He thrives at attacking the rim and finishing in traffic, but he needs to improve other aspects of his game

 



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