CHICAGO – The first day of the NBA draft combine did little to dispel the pervasive sense that there is very little certain about the 2012 draft beyond Anthony Davis going No. 1 to New Orleans.

Who might go No. 2? Six months ago, the overwhelming consensus pointed to Andre Drummond, who was viewed as a prospect with perhaps even more upside than Davis at that point. He’s been compared to the likes of Dwight Howard and Amare Stoudemire, but a lackluster freshman year at UConn also drew less flattering comparisons to names like Kwame Brown or Emeka Okafor.

Two years ago at this point, Ekpe Udoh’s name was barely a blip on the radar. It was ludicrous to think Greg Monroe might fall to the Pistons only because Udoh would go ahead of him.

A year ago now, Bismack Biyombo was a man of mystery thought to have a shot at perhaps sneaking into the late lottery. Come draft night, Michael Jordan was so fearful Biyombo wouldn’t be there at No. 9 – one spot after the Pistons – that he swung a trade to get up to 7 so he could claim Biyombo for his Charlotte Bobcats, dropping Brandon Knight into old rival Joe Dumars’ lap.

Instead of nearly six weeks between the lottery and the draft, this week there are four. The change won’t unduly strain NBA teams, but it does change their timelines. Things turn up a notch this week with the Chicago draft combine, where the Pistons will watch the athletic testing and measurements with interest but be intensely focused on interviewing candidates for the No. 9 pick.

If you want to make it through a full Brandon Knight workout, you’d better pack a lunch. And maybe a sleeping bag.

At one hour, he’s just warming up. At two hours, he gives a little head feint so coaches who might tell him to call it a day bug out. And then he keeps going.