Cleveland picks 1st, and it looked like Nerlens Noel was going to be their guy … but his rumored posse might have them looking in another direction.
Perhaps Alex Len of Maryland is the guy on Cleveland’s radar? I’m an Alex Len fan. Have been since last summer.
Kevin Cowherd, a columnist in Baltimore, is not. It is unclear how closely Cowherd follows the NBA, or the draft, but he feels like he knows Alex Len, and writes in the Sun:
Are you kidding me?
Alex Len? The top pick in the whole draft? Please.
The guy is coming off a mostly disappointing sophomore season for the Terps, which we’ll get into in a minute.
How can Cowherd write an entire column about the Terps and Len and not once mention their point guard woes? The Terps led the ACC in turnovers due to shaky guard play. They all wanted to score and shoot, but were simply turnover machines. An entry pass was an exercise in futility.
I’d love to know how closely Cowherd watched Len last season, or if he conferred with any beat writers before offering his lazy opinion.
Len already has more offense in his game than Noel ever will. I don’t even think Noel’s ceiling is Serge Ibaka because I’m not sure the offense will come around. (This isn’t the time or the place to go into former AAU big men developing vs. foreign big men developing.) Larry Sanders or DeAndre Jordan may be a better comparison, once Noel gains weight.
Len has been compared to Z, but if you’re not into Euro-on-Euro comparisons, how about this: Kevin Willis, a guy who had a long pro career and was always a solid interior factor. I don’t know if Len will have an 18-15 season, but career averages of 12-8 are nothing to scoff at.
I’ll have my final mock draft Wednesday or Thursday morning.