2 December 2020

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Redrafting the 2013 NBA Lottery

The 2013 NBA Draft does not have the same fond memory as the 2011 and 2012 drafts had. Despite that, they had some of the best players in the NBA right now. Many don’t remember that, though because they were drafted outside of the lottery and one of the biggest draft busts ever was drafted at #1.

This draft only had three all-stars come out of it, but they’re three of the best all-stars in the NBA. They also had some impressive role players come out of the draft that no one would’ve seen coming. Without further ado: here is the redraft of the 2013 NBA Draft:

1. Cleveland Cavaliers

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With the first pick in the 2013 NBA Draft, the Cleveland Cavaliers select: Giannis Antetokounmpo

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Giannis Antetokounmpo was originally drafted 15th overall by the Milwaukee Bucks as arguably the biggest steal of the decade. Giannis, from Greece, was unknown by the NBA so none of the lottery teams took a chance on him. The Bucks decided to take the chance on him and it more than paid off. Antetokounmpo is currently the reigning MVP and led the Bucks to the best record in the NBA this year.

The Cavaliers originally selected Anthony Bennett with this pick. Him going #1 surprised everyone and he showed why. He spent just one season with Cleveland before being traded and he then spent the next three years on three different teams and was out of the NBA by 2017. He nearly made a comeback to the Rockets after excelling in the G-League but was cut before the season began.

If the Bucks had drafted Antetokounmpo with this pick, then by 2017 he and LeBron would’ve been an unstoppable force (assuming that LeBron doesn’t affect his development obviously). The two of them would’ve wreaked havoc on the NBA to the point where not even the Warriors would be a match for the two of them. No one knew at the time, but the Cavaliers and 13 other teams blew their chance to get a generational player.

2. Orlando Magic

With the second pick in the 2013 NBA Draft, the Orlando Magic select: Victor Oladipo

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - FEBRUARY 7:  Victor Oladipo #4 of the Indiana Pacers looks on against the Toronto Raptors on FEBRUARY 7, 2020 at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, Indiana. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2020 NBAE (Photo by Ron Hoskins/NBAE via Getty Images)
Ron Hoskins/Getty Images

Like in the original draft, the Magic would select Victor Oladipo, only this time, they don’t get rid of him. Knowing what he will become, he teams up with Nikola Vucevic to be a great NBA duo in the Eastern Conference and become a solid playoff team.

3. Washington Wizards

With the third pick in the 2013 NBA Draft, the Washington Wizards select: Rudy Gobert

Los Angeles Lakers v Utah Jazz
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Gobert was originally selected 27th overall by the Utah Jazz, another huge steal in this draft as Gobert is arguably the best defender in the league. Coronavirus controversy aside, Gobert has been huge for the Jazz as their interior presence has led the team to a top-four seed in the West. It took him a season to get going, but once he did, there was no turning back.

The Wizards had originally selected Otto Porter Jr with this pick. Porter Jr is a good player who consistently averages above ten points. Drafted at third, he’s a disappointment, but a few spots back and he is a good player who didn’t fail to reach expectations. He is currently the starting Small Forward for the struggling Chicago Bulls.

Gobert on the Wizards gives John Wall that pick-and-roll partner he has needed his whole career. Marcin Gortat was a solid Center for the Wizards but Gobert is better on every level and would have great chemistry with Wall. If they had drafted Gobert, this team could have contended for a championship in the Eastern Conference.

4. Charlotte Bobcats (Hornets)

With the fourth pick in the 2013 NBA Draft, the Charlotte Bobcats select: CJ McCollum

NBA: Detroit Pistons at Portland Trail Blazers
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McCollum was originally drafted tenth overall by the Portland Trail Blazers. This redraft puts McCollum fourth as he is arguably the best shooter in the draft. He was slow out of the gate with two injury-plagued seasons, but by 2015, he was averaging 20.8 points and earned himself the Most Improved Player award. Since then, McCollum has been a star for Portland and loved by the fans.

The Bobcats originally selected Cody Zeller with this pick. Zeller is a solid player when he plays, but he only plays for half of the season. The Bobcats also already had Al Jefferson so it doesn’t really make much sense to draft a Center.

Teaming up McCollum and Walker would change the Hornets’ history as Walker would have a credible player beside him. Together they’d basically be in the East what the Blazers are now: a team that consistently will make the 

5. Phoenix Suns

With the fifth pick in the 2013 NBA Draft, the Phoenix Suns select: Steven Adams

Thunder: Steven Adams took a charge, and he wants you to know it
AP Photo/Rick Bowmer

Adams was originally drafted 12th overall by the Oklahoma City Thunder, however, this draft class did not have many big names so that elevates Adams to #5. Adams took a season with OKC to get going, but he grew into one of the better defensive Centers in the league. He’s a starting-caliber Center on any team now and he’d be a much better piece than their starting Center at the time, Miles Plumlee.

The Suns originally selected Alex Len with this pick. Although he’s a serviceable role player, Len never blossomed into the player most thought he would be. A trend that appears to be quite common for big men who can shoot. Len’s career is currently at its lowest point whilst he plays for Sacramento off the bench.

6. Philadelphia 76ers (Via New Orleans)

With the sixth pick in the 2013 NBA Draft, the Philadelphia 76ers select: Dennis Schroder

Thunder's Dennis Schroder Fined $25K for Making Contact with Ref ...
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Schroder was originally drafted 17th overall by the Atlanta Hawks. After his rookie season, he quickly became a valuable rotational player and now with the Thunder, he is a Sixth Man of the Year candidate and a possible future all-star. He’s averaging 19.0 points off the bench, the best scoring of his career, and has one of the brightest futures among young Point Guards.

The 76ers had originally selected Nerleans Noel with this pick. Noel has become something of a journeyman in the NBA, playing for four teams in six seasons. Ironically, he is currently OKC’s backup Point Guard and gets a lot of minutes with Schroder. Noel is a good player, but until he can play with some more energy and develop a three-point shot, he’s likely to be a journeyman in the NBA.

Schroder would become the new face of The Process as the 76ers would trade Michael Carter-Williams, the reigning Rookie of the Year, in just his second season. Instead, Schroder would be the stall until they acquire Simmons and Embiid, or they might trade him too, there’s no telling what that front office would’ve done.

7. Sacramento Kings

With the seventh pick in the 2013 NBA Draft, the Sacramento Kings select: Otto Porter Jr

Chicago Bulls forward Otto Porter Jr. (22) during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Detroit Pistons, Sunday, March 10, 2019, in Detroit. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)
Carlos Osorio/Associated Press

Otto Porter Jr was originally selected 3rd overall by the Washington Wizards. He’s a solid all-around player, but he doesn’t necessarily excel at any one thing. He’s a great complimentary piece on any team, but that’s where his ceiling is at. He’s currently on the Bulls where he has only played nine games this season due to injury.

The Kings had originally selected Ben McLemore with this pick. McLemore is a good player who is currently playing as Houston’s sixth man. One could make an argument for them going ahead and selecting McLemore, but Porter is a slightly better player since he is more versatile.

Not much would’ve changed had Porter been drafted by the Kings. They probably would’ve been slightly better, but it still would’ve been a waste of DeMarcus Cousins’s early career.

8. Detroit Pistons

With the eighth pick in the 2013 NBA Draft, the Detroit Pistons select: Kentavious Caldwell-Pope

Bleacher Report NBA on Twitter: "Lakers bring back KCP on a 2-year ...
Via: Twitter

Despite what many might think, Caldwell-Pope actually was perfectly drafted. It took him several seasons to grow into the consistent and less impulsive scorer he is today, but he is now a crucial part of the Lakers bench. He’s coming off the bench this season averaging 9.5 points per game, but before this season, he had five straight seasons where he averaged more than 11 points per game. This scenario likely would’ve played out the same as Detroit would trade him in the final year of his contract to avoid paying him an expensive second contract. History repeats itself with this pick.

9. Utah Jazz (Via Minnesota)

With the ninth pick in the 2013 NBA Draft, the Utah Jazz select: Trey Burke

NBA: Milwaukee Bucks at Dallas Mavericks
Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Trey Burke was also originally drafted at this position. This selection may cause some heads to scratch, but diving deeper into it, it makes perfect sense. Burke is the best Point Guard remaining in this draft now that Schroder has been taken and the Jazz had set themselves up to draft a Point Guard in this draft. Burke was never a bad Point Guard. He averaged more than 10 points per game in five of his seven seasons. He proved in New York that he’s a great scorer off the bench before he ended up in Philadelphia where his role is next to nothing.

10. Portland Trail Blazers

With the tenth pick in the 2013 NBA Draft, the Portland Trail Blazers select: Tim Hardaway Jr

New York Knicks guard Tim Hardaway Jr. (3) in the first half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, Jan. 1, 2019, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
David Zalubowski/Associated Press

Tim Hardaway Jr was originally selected 24th overall by the New York Knicks. Hardaway Jr has averaged more than 10 points per game in six of his seven seasons. He’s currently thriving with the Dallas Mavericks, shooting 40.7% from deep on 7.2 attempts. His scoring has been essential for the Mavericks and he’s up for a new contract where he is going to be paid handsomely.

The Trail Blazers originally selected CJ McCollum with their tenth pick, but he is now with the Bobcats (Hornets) in Charlotte.

Hardaway Jr is a nice replacement for McCollum as the secondary scorer behind Lillard. For their first two seasons, Hardaway Jr was actually the better player for the first two seasons and he’d be a nice piece next to Lillard. There are worse consolation prizes that Hardaway Jr.

11. Philadelphia 76ers

With the 11th pick in the 2013 NBA Draft, the Philadelphia 76ers select: Ben McLemore

SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA - FEBRUARY 20: Ben McLemore #16 of the Houston Rockets looks on in the first half against the Golden State Warriors at Chase Center on February 20, 2020 in San Francisco, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images)
Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images

Ben McLemore was originally selected seventh overall by the Sacramento Kings. McLemore has not quite lived up to that draft position, but he was pretty close. He has averaged 9.0 points per game for his career and is a serviceable role player for the Houston Rockets as he helps them contend for a championship.

The 76ers had originally selected Michael Carter-Williams with this pick. Despite him being the Rookie of the Year, his career quickly fell off after his first two seasons. He is currently reviving his career with Orlando and is likely to remain in the league, but it’s safe to say that he isn’t worth the lottery pick that many thought he was.

McLemore isn’t all that impressive a player either, but this draft class as a whole is not impressive outside the top five. McLemore probably wouldn’t last long with the 76ers either as Carter-Williams mainly put up empty stats and McLemore would too, but he is still the better player and deserves to be drafted as such.

12. Oklahoma City Thunder

With the 12th pick in the 2013 NBA Draft, the Oklahoma City Thunder select: Kelly Olynyk

New York Knicks v Miami Heat
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Olynyk was originally drafted 13th overall by the Boston Celtics. He’s been a solid role player for his entire career as a stretch big man who consistently hits the deep ball. He is best known for tearing Kevin Love’s arm off during the Conference Finals in 2015 out of frustration. Aside from that, he is known as one of the better shooters in the league who is currently playing valuable bench minutes for the Miami Heat.

The Thunder originally selected Steven Adams with this pick, but he was now selected fifth overall by the Suns.

Olynyk is a solid replacement for Adams at Center. Despite the fact that Olynyk is not as good at rebounding, he is a better offensive player. He is the polar opposite of Adams, but he’d fit well as stretching the floor would make it much easier for Westbrook to get to the basket. Likely not much would change with the Thunder as their Center is still solid and they’d have some fun years ahead of them before Durant leaves.

13. Boston Celtics (Via Minnesota)

With the 13th pick in the 2013 NBA Draft, the Boston Celtics select: Nerlens Noel

PORTLAND, OR - APRIL 23:   Nerlens Noel #3 of the Oklahoma City Thunder looks on during the game against the Portland Trail Blazers during Game Five of Round One of the 2019 NBA Playoffs on April 23, 2019 at the Moda Center in Portland, Oregon. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2019 NBAE (Photo by Zach Beeker/NBAE via Getty Images)
Zach Beeker/Getty Images

Noel was originally selected 6th overall by the Philadelphia 76ers. It’s safe to say that he has not lived up to those expectations, but he is still a serviceable role player. He’s an okay scorer and an above-average defender. He’s currently a key bench piece for the Oklahoma City Thunder who are looking to make it to the second round in the Western Conference playoffs if basketball ever comes back.

The Celtics had originally selected Kelly Olynyk with this pick, but he was drafted 12th overall by the Thunder.

Like the Adams-Olynyk comparisons on how their polar opposites, Noel is the polar opposite to Olynyk. He doesn’t shoot at all and mainly focuses on defense and inside scoring. He’d come off the bench for the Celtics and give them defense instead of scoring. If he’s still around when Jared Sullinger falls off, he could be the starting Center for the Celtics, a position still needed by the team to this day.

14. Minnesota Timberwolves (Via Utah)

With the 14th pick in the 2013 NBA Draft, the Minnesota Timberwolves select: Tony Snell

Chicago Bulls v Phoenix Suns
Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Snell was originally selected 20th overall by the Chicago Bulls. Many of you may not even know who he is. Snell is a silent sniper who is currently shooting 40.2% from deep with the Detroit Pistons. He is also known for his solid perimeter defense. He is the ideal role player to have on a roster. He knows his role and does his best to help the team.

The Timberwolves had originally selected Shabazz Muhammad with this pick. Muhammad has been out of the league since 2018 and it doesn’t seem like he’s coming back. He only had one solid season in his career because of his constant injuries.

With Snell on the Timberwolves, he’d provide many more minutes. He’s a durable player with only one season a few years back where he played less than 70 games. His main role would be to back-up Brewer as Small Forward and fill in at Shooting Guard when Kevin Martin would get injured. He wouldn’t save this doomed franchise from wasting Kevin Love’s career, but he’d help them grab a win here and there.

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