Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Bilas on Irving, Barnes, Singler and NBA draft

As part of Team Observer's comprehensive NBA draft coverage, I will have a Q and A with Charlotte resident and basketball analyst Jay Bilas in Thursday's newspaper and online. Bilas will be a key part of ESPN's coverage of Thursday night's draft. Here's a small preview that includes Bilas's take on several ACC players:

Q: Any chance someone other than Duke point guard Kyrie Irving will go No.1?
A: Not to me. I think he's clearly No.1, and I don't think it's a big head-scratcher at all. He's the best player and the best prospect available. He's a true point guard -- not as athletic or explosive as John Wall or Derrick Rose or the guys he is compared to. But he's a purer point guard than either one of the and a better shooter than both of them combined.
I would liken him a little bit to Chris Paul, although certainly he's not as good as Chris Paul right now.

Q: Where would Harrison Barnes have gone in this draft if he had not decided to return to North Carolina for his sophomore year?
A: Top five without question -- maybe No.3, maybe even No.2. He's really, really talented. I think he's a better fit for the NBA than Derrick Williams is, and Williams will probably be drafted No.2.

Q: Besides Irving, talk about some of the ACC's other draft prospects.
A: The guy I have ranked the highest from the ACC after Irving is Chris Singleton from Florida State. I like him a lot. He's got good size and length and is probably the best overall defender in the draft. He's not a high-volume rebounder, but he can make a face-up jumper. His form on the jumper is pretty good and it can get better. He's got an NBA-caliber game.

The No.3 prospect from the ACC is probably Iman Shumpert from Georgia Tech. I think he's the best perimeter defender in the draft. Ridiculously athletic. He lacked some maturity at Georgia Tech and is not a pure point guard. But he's good in transition and can get in the lane. He's just not really a shooter.

I've got [Duke guard] Nolan Smith ranked as a first-round pick, although some others have him as a second-rounder. He's about No.25 or No.26 for me. He competes, he's good in transition and can make challenged shots.
He's not a natural point guard, but he's an attack player and was one of the best five guards in the country last year. He will be valued somewhere in a winning culture.

The next guy after that from the ACC would probably be [Duke forward] Kyle Singler. He's difficult to evaluate because I like everything about him. He competes, defends and plays his tail off. It's just at the position he will play in the pros -- small forward -- you have to be able to make shots and he has not consistently made shots. That says maybe top of the second round to me. He's also not incredibly athletic.

More from Bilas in Thursday's paper, including why he thinks the NBA won't be able to play a full season in 2011-12.

14 comments:

Jay must have bumped his head said...

Irving before Barnes? LOL you would be the only one in the world who would state that garbage. Barnes would be picked #1 by every single team, no matter if their team was in need of a point guard. Irving has proven nothing since high school. He is miles behind Harrison in talent, ability, and mental toughness. It is not even a contest.

Anonymous said...

@ Anonymous June 22, 2011 1:10 PM - You're obviously a Tarhole.

Anonymous said...

i heard we are giving up diaw for minn #2 pick and stephen jack for clevelands #4.. i hate to lose those 2 players... they have been awesome

Anonymous said...

Hey 1:10pm Tarhole - why do you think Barnes opted to stay at school? He wants to be consensus number one (as part of his legacy) and when he realized that wasn't a given, thanks to Irving or Williams, he opted to stay another year to get a championship.

Everyone says he's going to stay three years. I call BS. He wouldn't have waited to announce his staying if that was the plan - he was having research done, to see if he'd be picked first. When that didn't pan out, he chose to stay and could very well be number one next year.

I think Barnes would've gone #3 this year, and is arguably the best player left in college basketball for the 2011-2012 season. If he remains the consensus top pick for the 2012 draft, and especially if UNC wins the National Championship, UNC fans might as well consider him gone.

Anonymous said...

I am hearing we're getting Justin Knox with our #19 pick!! that would be sweet!!

ROY>RAT said...

Dear Kyrie,

Please stay off the motorcycles.

Your pal,

J Will

Anonymous said...

Guess Anon 1:10 pm doesn't recall Barnes being the biggest early-season bust in recent memory. Preseason First Team joke. He had more 2-16 shooting games then I care to remember, and I think at one point ranked 1,200 or something in the NCAA in shooting.

Yeah, all Irving did was avg more points, assists, steals, fg%, 3 pt fg%, speed, and confidence than Barnes. That's all though.

Anonymous said...

Barnes has more talent in his big toe then Irving ever will.

Anonymous said...

@ Roy>Rat- really classy motorcycle comment.


Funny to see the Tar Holes get all worked up over a player they never even played against!

Congrats Kyrie, GO DUKE!!!!

CBW1972 said...

Barnes = Sean Elliot. A very solid player, but not a superstar. Irving, however, has the talent to lead a team for 15 years and be a star in the league.

MichaelProcton said...

Yeah, 1:10. Irving obviously didn't prove a thing by being the best player on a loaded Duke team that could have made a run at being undefeated had he stayed healthy.

Anonymous said...

Ahh, these Dookies and Wolflackers are just irritated that another UNC alumnus got another NBA championship ring. That makes UNC 28 by my count as compared to 2 for Dook and 1 for Wolfies.

Anonymous said...

Yes, the Mavericks couldn't have won it all with out the immeasurable, invaluable contributions of injured UNC benchwarmer Brendan Haywood!

Maverick Nation thanks you for your 8 cumulative minutes of crucial, game-changing action in the Finals!

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