Thursday, June 27, 2013

I got so much hand I'm coming out of my gloves

Only you Seinfeld fans will get that one.

That's what John Hammond has to be thinking after the Bucks made their 1st round pick tonight. Hammond, who got a contract extension through 2015-2016 earlier this season, drafted a player that may not wear an NBA uniform for 2 years. The 18-year-old Giannis Antetokounmpo has some spectacular talent, but is as raw as they come. Giannis also just signed a 4-year contract with his team (although there is reportedly not a huge buyout), so he will likely play at least one and maybe 2 or 3 more seasons overseas before he suits up for the Bucks. This is not the "win now" kind of player that Herb Kohl may have demanded if he didn't trust Hammond.

Hammond has shown a definite pattern in his drafts and Kohl has given him the freedom to follow it. Hammond has never picked higher than 8 since he became the Bucks GM. Every year he has taken a player that had a high ceiling, but also high bust potential. When you are picking in the late lottery or mid-first round this seems like a pretty sound strategy. Hammond's picks have been:

#8 Joe Alexander
#10 Brandon Jennings
#15 Larry Sanders
#10 Jimmer Ferdette (traded for Tobias Harris)
#14 John Henson
#15 Giannis Antetokounmpo

Henson was the only major college (UNC) guy that had a 3-year history of production. Larry Sanders was from VCU and a late bloomer. Alexander was an athletic guy but didn't have a basketball head. Jennings, Harris, and Giannis were all 18-year-old gambles. All but Henson are guys with big upside. Not that Henson won't develop into a good player, but he was a more known commodity after 3 years getting significant minutes at UNC.

This is of course bad news for this year's team, although after Monta opted out of his contract this year was pretty much sunk. When I look at the players taken after Giannis, there isn't much that jumps out at you. The 2 point guards will probably both impact their teams this season, and I would have been happy to see Schroeder in a Milwaukee uniform with no Monta. This is a draft that won't be able to be evaluated for 4-6 years when the Bucks have to decide if Giannis gets a 2nd contract.

1 comment: