June 23, 2009
With the NBA Draft just a few days away, Ball Don't Lie has decided to weigh in with its own 2009 Mock Draft, just for shots and giggles. But since we know so little about college basketball, we called in SB Nation's team experts (and a few others) to throw their darts at the board. Let's see what sticks ...
With the 17th pick in the 2009 Ball Don't Lie NBA Mock Draft, the Philadelphia 76ers select ...
Jonny Flynn: PG, Syracuse, Soph.
"Andre Miller is out. Eddie Jordan and the Princeton offense are in. Lou Williams has not shown that he possesses the ability to be an NBA point guard. Despite rumors of BJ Mullens (hurl) or a shooting guard, we're very confident in Philly that Eddie 'The Shot' Stefanski will go point guard here. I'm very surprised that Flynn fell this far, especially since there's talk that Sacramento may even take him at 4, and I have no delusions that he'll be there at 17 on draft night. But he's the best available in my opinion, so we're scooping up the Orange.
It would be nice if our rookie PG could have a year of seasoning under a veteran guard like Andre Miller(notes), but it is more likely that he'll be thrust into the starting role from day one. I'm sure we'll sign a Kevin Ollie(notes)-esque veteran point guard to tutor young Jonathan (or Tywon or Eric) but for only minor minutes. I have no problem with this because of the nature of Coach Jordan's Princeton offense.
The way the sets are run, each player on the court will be forced to learn every position, because the key to the offense is setting picks and taking the cutters spot. Basically, constant motion. So if we take Flynn, he can use his speed and playmaking ability on the fast break, but not have to carry all the weight of orchestrating a normal offense.
At Syracuse, Jonny went to war each night for Jim Boeheim. The obvious example is the 67 minutes (67?!) he played in the six-OT game vs. UConn, but he was playing 37 minutes each night. The Niagara Falls (US side, sorry Canada) native didn't break down all season, showing his durability and putting to bed most concerns about his height being a weakness. Similar to Lawson, Flynn is built very compact, and handles his body well. His percentages are solid, 46% from the field, and 78% from the line, but just 31% from beyond. At 'Cuse, his shot selection was suspect, a result of how much responsibility Boeheim gave him. The same can be said for his high turnover numbers, but it should stabilize in EJ's offense because he really is a very good ball handler.
If Dejuan Blair has the draft's best smile, Jonny's gotta be a close number two. Kid's a charmer. It would be nice to see him pick-and-pop with Elton Brand(notes), find a cutting Andre Iguodala(notes) or Thaddeus Young(notes), and hit Jason Kapono(notes) for the wide-open trey all season long. Two years later, Philly's got another championship. Hey — a blogger can dream, can't he?"