Jun 05

Chad Ford Has Portland Addressing It's Needs In Latest Mock Draft

By DHawes22 Posted in: 2012draft, andredrummond, Blazers, damianlillard

Ask any fan what are the two biggest needs Portland has to address this offseason and they'll tell you, a point guard and a center. And with just one center (Kurt Thomas) and one point guard (Nolan Smith) under contract heading into the 2012-13 season, it's no secret the Trail Blazers will look to fill those voids either through the draft or via free agency. But the draft comes first, and with June 28th creeping up around the corner, ESPN's Chad Ford released the sixth version of his 2012 NBA Mock Draft.

At pick No. 6, Ford sees the Trail Blazers selecting UConn center, Andre Drummond, just as he did in his previous version. Here's Ford's analysis of the sixth pick:

There's really no gray area when it comes to Drummond. Either scouts love his size, potential, and athleticism or are turned off by his lack of production during his one year at Connecticut and have concerns about how his raw overall skills will translate to the next level. But with so few elite centers left in today's NBA, the opportunity for Portland to get their hands on one and pair him with LaMarcus Aldridge to form one of the league's most devastating front-lines, could be too tempting to pass up on.

And one would have to think that Portland would be a good situation for Drummond as well. As said, he'd get to start alongside one of the NBA's best power forwards in Aldridge so the pressure to come in immediately and be "The Man" would be off Drummond's shoulders. While LA would be shouldering the scoring load down low, Drummond would be asked to play to his strengths by patrolling the paint, looking for shots to block and rebounds to grab.

At No. 11, Ford has Portland filling their other void by taking Damian Lillard, a point guard out of Weber State.

When you see a player average 24.5 points per night -- second in the NCAA Division 1 -- coming out of a small school, such as Weber State, the automatic assumption is that he's the only option on the team, so he must be throwing up 30+ shots a game. But that couldn't be further from the truth. Lillard did all of his scoring damage on only 15.5 field goal attempts a night. How was the 6-3 guard so efficient? For starters he found his way to the charity stripe eight times per game in just over 34 minutes of action and hit three 3-pointers each outing at a 40% clip.

The naysayers will argue that Lillard is not a "true" point guard who looks to get others involved before anything else. And while his four assists per game won't knock any socks off, it's not as if he can't pass. As the lead guard and No. 1 option on offense, as well as the focal point of each and every defense he faced, Lillard only turned the ball over 2.3 times a game, which equates to a solid 1.74 assists-to-turnover ratio. Although he's not a finished product as a distributer, you can bet the farm that having the likes of LaMarcus Aldridge and Wesley Matthews to pass to will have those assist numbers rising in no time.

How would you feel about a Drummond/Lillard draft, Rip City? Do you like addressing the needs through the draft? Are Drummond and Lillard are the best players available at each pick? Or should the Trail Blazers look in another direction with those picks? Personally, this is about as ideal as it gets for me if the Trail Blazers stand pat at No. 6 and No. 11. Drummond gives the Rose City a legit center while Lilliard has me seeing flashbacks of Terry Porter running the show, able to stop and pop from three at any given moment. But that's my outlook, what's yours? Sound off in the comments!


  1. My fist concern would be will Drummond be available at the 6th spot; if not get another big in your sights; If Drummond is available by all means go for him and Lillard too.
    I feel that we can use the draft on players for the future and develop some of them in now our farm league the Stampede with one of our coaches coaching them with Portland play and at the same time get ample playing time in their desired position opposed to the past where the Stampede dictated the time and position. Then use our cap space to get a premier PG, bring over Joe Freeland on a new contract, as his rookie contract has expired, sign Batum and JJ and we will be off and running; also, we have the 40th and 41st pick to add depth, and since this is a deep draft because of players staying in college one yer longer because of the lock out, there will be some good role players left in the second round.

    by Hg on 6/6/2012 11:10 AM
  2. HG-

    I think if the Cavs take Harrison Barnes at No. 4, Portland is sitting pretty, because that would mean that one of Beal, Kidd-Gilchrist, Drummond, or Robinson will be available by the time Portland picks at No. 6. And to me, all of those guys would be out of the park, home run selections.

    by DHawes22 on 6/6/2012 11:38 AM
  3. I hope you are right---I would love to have Drummond, closest thing to Greg that we can get. He would get ample playing time, and in time will learn to control his fouling, and just rebounding, put backs and outlet passes to quicken the pace would be enough to begin with. We also have the option to play JJ and LMA on a high low post for speed. And maybe Freeland, or Joel P our center spot would be re- tooled.

    by Hg on 6/6/2012 11:49 AM
  4. I've been reading reports that Cleveland is in love with Harrison Barnes, so that further fuels my prediction of them going with Barnes at #4. At #6, I think Portland's pick will be easy: take the one guy who slipped to you. Now at #11 it's bit more tricky. There could be a top-flight shooting guard available like Jeremy Lamb or they could roll the dice on Perry Jones III or do they go point guard if Marshall or Lillard are on the board? Who knows.

    I do like the idea of bringing over Freeland as the reports coming back on him from Europe have been nothing but fantastic. A 3-man big rotation of Drummond, Aldridge, and Freeland is not only talented but still very youthful.

    by DHawes22 on 6/6/2012 5:18 PM
  5. @DHawes's22:
    If both Lillard and Marshall are both on the board, I think you would have to go with Lillard because of his shooting ability and Portland needs that. But i am still torn with Marshalls pass first mentality, as we need a PG that involves all the players as Dre was, but if he cannot push his range out to the 3, the defense will not respect him. Of course we had a lillard in JBay until the defense got wise to him also.
    I really like your hopes on Drummand, if he is available for sure take him, if not, I like Jones111, for no more then his raw talent. I believe Portland can stop him from sitting on his laurels, although they couldn't do that with Clyde and he did OK with just his talent.

    by Hg on 6/7/2012 4:53 AM
  6. HG-

    I think it's a win-win if both Lillard and Marshall are both on the board at #11. I think Marshall is a better scorer then given credit for and I think Lillard is a better distributor then given credit for. Kendall has that "it" factor, but his foot speed worries me. I've wanted a Terry Porter clone since 94, so it'd be tough for me to pass on Damian Lillard.

    by DHawes22 on 6/7/2012 8:55 AM
  7. DHawes22:
    I guess we can want all we want, but in the end we will get what we get LOL.
    So, I am flexible also. I will learn to want what w get.

    by Hg on 6/7/2012 9:14 AM
  8. I actually like the choices that Ford made in this mock draft. I would be ok wit draftin TRoss at #11 instead of Lillard which is what HoopsWorld's latest mock has.

    by LJGinger8 on 6/7/2012 9:43 PM
  9. I agree. Ford's mock would be ideal. I still want to find a way to get a third first-round pick, though. As for Ross, I love his game. But give me Lillard, who is rising by the moment, over Ross.

    by ClydeFrog on 6/8/2012 3:33 PM
  10. It's sounding more and morel like Portland will have to make a difficult decision at No. 6. If Barnes/Drummond are there do you take them over Lillard? Or do you snatch up your point guard knowing he may not last until No. 11? I feel like we will need to move up in this draft to get the guys we want.

    by DHawes22 on 6/9/2012 3:47 PM
  11. by Hg on 6/10/2012 5:36 AM
  12. DHawes22: I still think you were right about taking Barnes or Drummand at the 6th and Lillard or Marshall at the 11. My question to you is, it has been reported that Drummand is averaging 25% free throw shooting and has poor technique is shooting period. can he overcome this flaw with good big man coaching? If in fact we keep Buck Williams, we already have a coach in place. Although like Thabeet, Buck can't do miracles LOL. But Hey, I like Thabeet.

    by Hg on 6/10/2012 5:34 AM
  13. HG-
    Poor FT shooting doesn't concern me as much as his perceived "lack of a motor". Look at Przy: He was a horrible FT shooter but put a lot of time and effort into it with our shooting coaches and now it's almost a shock when he doesn't go to the line and knock down two in a row. FT Shooting is 90% mental, 5% technique and 5% skill.

    I'm just really concerned about his desire and drive. If they are lacking as most have reported, that's a HUGE red flag. Take Darius Miles for instance. He had 1st Team All-NBA talent but he was just out there to collect a paycheck, just did the bare minimum to get by. And frankly, the drive to succeed is hard to teach, if teachable at all.

    by DHawes22 on 6/10/2012 10:35 AM
  14. DHawes22: I believe everybody has motors, it is just different with some people. Desire is about 90% mental too.
    Everybody hasn't the killer instinct, but can still be a good BB player. IMO, a killer instinct is much like playing king of the mountain, which is fun as long as you are the king and nobody is better. nevertheless there is always somebody coming that will knock you off. I was never the best, I never acquired the killer instant. In fact I flattened out the top of the mountain and reached down to my teammates telling them there was plenty room at the top. I never was really aggressive, mostly because I was afraid of failure, but give me the details of what you wanted me to do and I would go out and get the job done with pride of accomplishment. There are many BB players like that. give them a job to do and they will do it without asking questions but ask them to be something they are not and fear may destroy them. We need the hard hats and lunch pail type of guys too.
    I realize there are many players that love the money, but don't want to do the work that goes into getting that money. Whether Drummand is that type player or not, I don't know, I don't know if he is just shy and afraid to take on the big role or if he is still a child in a mans body; I would sure think that he is worth at least talking to and then decide.
    We have the same problem with Nic. he can be aggressive at times but that is not his true nature and may never develop that, but he does OK with everybody else scoring and him making it easier to do so.
    I have read so many Pros and Cons about Drummand. I get thoroughly confused.

    by Hg on 6/10/2012 3:28 PM
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