The NBA Draft Blog Team Needs series continues to take a look at each teams various draft scenarios. Last year, the Washington Wizards were the big lottery winners and drafted franchise point guard John Wall. While the team went through a lot of changes, the backcourt of Wall and Jordan Crawford, along with athletic big JaVale McGee, made for some excitement in D.C. With the #6 pick, the Wizards could have a shot at a legitimate low-post player, to go along with 2 more picks in the Top 34. Let’s take a look at the Washington Wizards’ potential draft outlook:
Returning Players- Rashard Lewis (F), Andray Blatche (F), John Wall (G), Yi Jianlian (F- Qualifying Offer), Nick Young (G – Qualifying Offer), JaVale McGee (C), Kevin Serpahin (F), Trevor Booker (F), Jordan Crawford (G)
Team Needs- Rebounding, Post Scoring, Perimeter Shooting
Position Needs – SG, SF, C
Picks – Round 1, Pick 6 (#6)
Round 1, Pick 18 (#18) (from Atlanta)
Round 2, Pick 4 (#34)
Analysis- As you can see, the Wizards still have a lot of areas where they can look to improve. However, 3 picks in the top 34 can go a long way to helping the team show significant improvement next year. With a potential top-flight point in John Wall, and athletic forwards in Lewis, Blatche and McGee, the Wizards’ main priority should be a legitimate low post scoring/rebounding threat. I have already discussed the possibility/probability of the Cavaliers taking Enes Kanter or Jonas Valanciunas at #4. Assuming the Raptors look point guard at #5, either Kanter or Valanciunas could be available at #6 for the Wizards. Either will give the Wizards a solid low-post presence with the long-term ability to help stretch the defense for Wall to work by stepping outside the lane. A third option, Jan Vesely, could come into play, but he is less of a low-post presence, lacking real NBA strength and offensive move-set.
Assuming the Wizards go back at #6, they can look to either add front-court depth, or look for a shooter/slasher at #18. An intriguing possibility is Jordan Hamilton dropping to 18, giving the Wizards an instant offensive threat to go along with Wall and Crawford in the backcourt. In the same mold, you could see the Wizards take a look at UCLA guard Tyler Honeycutt. If forward Tobias Harris is available, do the Wizards look to add an inside/out possibility who is still only 18 years old?
With the #34 pick, look for the Wizards to shore up their front line with one of the many developing bigs who should still be available. Jeremy Tyler could be worth a shot, but how far is he from being ready. I like the fit of a player such as JuJuan Johnson or Keith Benson, two guys who wouldn’t be traditional bigs in the NBA, but could add defense and rebounding off the bench.