1. Clippers—PF Blake Griffin, Oklahoma
Analysis: Not much has changed here. Despite the fact that Griffin's measurements didn't blow anyone away in Chicago, he still remains the best player in this year's draft. Look for the Clips to try to move one of their overpriced and injury prone big men before the draft and build around a nice, young and athletic core of Griffin, Thornton and Gordon.
2. Memphis—PG Ricky Rubio, Spain
Analysis: This will get very interesting in the next 2 weeks. Reports out of Spain are that a major buyout could require some issues for whoever drafts Rubio. Combine that with some reports saying that he has no interest in playing in Memphis and this could be a recipe for disaster. The Griz could and should look to move back in the draft and get a guy that fits their team needs -- more like a Jordan Hill. Look for teams like the Wizards, Kings and even possibly the Knicks to try to move up so that they can get their hands on Rubio or Hasheen Thabeet. The Kings would make the most sense as Rubio would be a perfect fit and Memphis would most likely be able to get Hill for less money at four.The only problem is what could the Kings offer?
3. Oklahoma City—C Hasheem Thabeet, Connecticut
Analysis: With Durant, Green and Westbrook all coming along nicely it is pretty evident that they need a center and a shooting guard. Well, the two best players in the draft here would both fit nicely in Oklahoma City. James Harden would give them a heady shooting guard who would be able to fit in with the three players mentioned above. With that said, I think they have to go Thabeet here.
He would instantly make up for the defensive deficiencies of Green and Durant and would give them a stopper in the paint to go along with Westbrook's D on the perimeter. You can always get a shooting guard in the future, but centers just don't come along very often. The pick here has to be Thabeet.
4. Sacramento—PG Brandon Jennings
Once again, this is the toughest selection to figure out. The best fit would be Rubio, but I really don't think he will be on the board at four. The Kings can't take Harden, who is the best player available because of Kevin Martin and Francisco Garcia. Like Martin, Harden doesn't possess the size or skill-set to move over to the 3.
The Kings have to swing for the fences here and really need a point guard to try to right the ship. The two guys who I think fit that category would be Jrue Holiday and Jennings. While there are certainly more proven, NBA-ready players in this year's draft (Ty Lawson and Jonny Flynn) few guys hold the potential that Jennings and Holiday have. Look for the Kings to try to move up to nab Rubio, but if they can't I think they still go with Jennings and hope he pans out.
5. Washington—SG James Harden, Arizona State
There have been talks about the Wiz moving up in the draft or possibly out of it entirely. They are stuck with a lot of bad contracts and don't have much roster flexibility.
With all of that in mind I think they take the best player available in Harden. They can move Gilbert Arenas back to the 1 and have Harden feed off of Arenas, Antawn Jamison and Caron Butler.
6. Minnesota—SG Tyreke Evans, Memphis
I really like the way Evans fits next to Randy Foye. I also think Evans has a game that will allow him to contribute and get minutes as soon as next year. The fact that he can play both guard positions is extremely appealing as it gives the 'Wolves much more flexibility.
If Harden slips here then I think he would be a good fit but I believe the 'Wolves need to take a player who is either a true point guard or someone who can play the point next to Foye. Evans is the latter.
7. Golden State—PG Jrue Holiday, UCLA
I know people may want to see Lawson, Flynn or Stephen Curry here but the Warriors need a bigger player who can play next to Monte Ellis. I also think that it will be tough for them to pass up on Jordan Hill here as he would be a nice player to have next to Andris Biedrins in the front court. The problem, of course, is that they still have very young and raw players in Brendan Wright and Anthony Randolph.
The fact of the matter is the Warriors are very tough to figure out as it's hard to know what direction they are going. If they truly believe Ellis is their point guard of the future then they need to give Jordan Hill a long look. I am going to go with Holiday here with the idea that they could play him and Ellis at the guard positions with Stephen Jackson at the 3. Ellis and Holiday are both bigger guards who could switch off defending the opposing 2. Let's be honest though, in Nellie Ball it's all about putting the ball in the rack. This would clearly be a boom or bust type of pick.
8. New York—PG Stephen Curry, Davidson
I really believe that Mike D'Antoni will get one of his point guards of the future in this draft. The question is which one does he like the most? I still say it's Curry, but Flynn, Lawson and Jeff Teague could all go here as well. No matter who they go with, I do think it will be a point guard.
9. Toronto—SG Demar DeRozan, USC
The Raps have needed athleticism at the 2 spot since Vince Carter left. There's no questioning DeRozan's athleticism and that's why I think he fits nicely here. They would also have to give Hill a serious look as well, especially if they believe Chris Bosh will be a goner after this season.
10. Milwaukee—PF Jordan Hill, Arizona
I have Hill slipping all the way to Milwaukee at 10. Hill does a lot of the things that Andrew Bogut doesn't and I think he would help give the Bucks a very strong frontcourt. The bucks could also look to find a point guard here as it appears Ramon Sessions might leave via free agency. But I think power forward is an important need for them and Hill would fit nicely with what they are trying to do.
11. New Jersey—PF DeJuan Blair, Pittsburgh
The Nets would be ecstatic to see Blair here. The team clearly has building blocks in Devin Harris and Brook Lopez, but they need some girth to go with the length and abilities that those two players respectively provide. Blair would give them some power to go with a solid young front court trio of Lopez, Ryan Anderson and Yi Jianlian.
12. Charlotte—SG Gerald Henderson, Duke
I still say this is the obvious pick for Charlotte. Henderson would be penciled into the starting lineup immediately and would form a nice backcourt duo with D.J. Augustine in the future. He has the ability to be a solid shooting guard and would give them a very solid piece.
13. Indiana—PG Jonny Flynn, Syracuse
This move only happens if Jarrett Jack walks. Flynn and T.J. Ford would make the quickest 1-2 punch of point guards in the league. With a guys like Troy Murphy, Danny Granger and Mike Dunleavy all being good three-point shooters, the Pacers need a guy who can penetrate and kick. Flynn would provide them with serious insurance for if/when T.J. Ford gets hurt and would also become their point guard of the future.
14. Phoenix—SF James Johnson, Wake Forest
They could go for a point guard here to groom behind Steve Nash, but I think they'll go for Johnson if he is still available. With Matt Barnes and Grant Hill getting older they need some athleticism at the 3. Johnson has the potential to really thrive in Phoenix's system.
15. Detroit—PF Gani Lawal, Georgia Tech
Lawal is a young power forward who knows his role in the paint. With Rasheed Wallace and Antonio McDyess likely moving on, there is a major need for a power player to help them out. He still has room to develop due to his youth so time is on his side as the Pistons look like they are going to be going into rebuilding mode.
16. Chicago-- SF Earl Clark, Louisville
Clark would give them much needed depth at both forward positions. It was clear the Bulls needed some more depth at the 3 and the 4 when Luol Deng got hurt and Clark would provide them with some bench flexibility. He has tremendous upside and could potentially develop into a starter.
17. Philadelphia—PG Ty Lawson, UNC
With Andre Miller looking like he has moved on from the City of Brotherly Love, the big need for the Sixers is at point guard. They also were at their best this year when they were getting up and down the floor. No player in this year's draft can push the ball like Lawson can.
18. Minnesota—SF Terrence Williams, Louisville
Williams gives them another ball handler and toughness at the 3 that Rodney Carney and Corey Brewer just don't bring. By adding him and Evans they will have drastically improved their wing play with two good ball handlers.
19. Atlanta—PG Eric Maynor, VCU
With the uncertainty of Mike Bibby's free agency and the struggles that Acie Law has had the move looks to be at point guard here. Even if they bring Bibby back they still would have a need to have a backup point guard of the future for him. Maynor would give them a guy who can backup right now and be a starter down the road.
20. Utah—C B.J. Mullens, Ohio State
When Mehmet Okur went down the Jazz really had trouble. They clearly needed a backup center who could come in and give them some rebounding and play in the paint. I am not a big fan of Mullens and I am sure Jazz fans are having flashbacks of Curtis Borchardt, but Mullens might be the guy for the Jazz here.
21. New Orleans Hornets—PG Jeff Teague, Wake Forest
It was clear that Chris Paul needed a backup this year. Without Jannero Pargo they really ran into a wall relying on Paul's handling for entire games. Teague would be a point guard who could come in and score when Paul heads to the pine. Teague also has decent size that should allow the Hornets to steal some minutes with both of them on the floor.
22. Dallas—SG Marcus Thornton, LSU
The Mavs need to find a shooting guard. Thornton has great toughness and would fit nicely with the established core the Mavs have. I think he would be thrilled to be on a good team and the guy has proven to be a winner. Look for him to do a lot of the little things to help this team right away.
23. Sacramento—SF Sam Young, Pittsburgh
The Kings have a lot of skinny wing players who really rely on shooting. Young would give them a stronger wing who will help on defense, rebounding and give them some much needed athleticism.
24. Portland—SG Nick Calathes, Florida
Portland has starters and potential starters at just about every position. They really don't need any more young guys on their roster. Drafting Calathes would allow them to store him overseas and bring him into the mix when he and they are ready to use him. They also could trade this pick for a veteran who would actually be able to crack the rotation.
25. Oklahoma City—PG Darren Collison, UCLA
Collison would give them a solid backup to go with Russell Westbrook. He also has shown that he can be successful while playing with Westbrook as he did in college. Where Westbrook and Collison are about as different as point guards come and because of that I think Collison would provide value to a young, up and coming squad.
26. Chicago—PF Tyler Hansbrough, UNC
Can you imagine a paint with Jaokim Noah and Tyler Hansbrough? Talk about energy and offensive rebounding. Hansbrough would complete a solid frontcourt rotation filled with guys who don't mind doing the dirty work (other than Tyrus Thomas).
27. Memphis—PF Jeff Pendegraph, Arizona State
Few players measured up as solid as Pendegraph did in Chicago. The guy has legit size to play the four and the five at the next level and had a very productive college year. The Grizzlies would be stretching to take him here, but they really need a solid power forward to play with their perimeter players. Pendegraph isn't flashy and his upside is limited but he should be a solid power forward who will do what needs to be done in the paint.
28. Minnesota—PG Patrick Mills, St. Mary's
After taking two wing players earlier in the draft the 'Wolves pickup the last true first-round point guard. Mills would give them an up-tempo guard who could push the second unit and potentially one day take over the reigns as the starter.
29. LA Lakers— SF Austin Daye, Gonzaga
With a solid and deep rotation the Lakers are in a position where they can draft for potential. Few players in this year's draft have the potential of Daye. But he will need time to get stronger and more confident in his own game if he wants to compete at the next level. With the uncertainty of Lamar Odom's future this would also make sense as Daye is a very versatile forward.
30. Cleveland—PF Demarre Carroll, Missouri
He would bring the Cavaliers everything they had wished from Ben Wallace. Carroll would give them the strength and athleticism that they so desperately needed in the playoffs. He is far from a complete player, but he can get up and down as well as any big in the draft and he has a limitless motor. They also could look for a shooter here, depending on how they feel about last year's pick, J.J. Hickson.