Posted on: March 24, 2009 4:33 am
Edited on: March 24, 2009 4:47 am

Review: 2008 NBA Prospect Ratings

Obviously my ratings are tough to prove after not even a full NBA season because they are long-term projections, but we have a better idea now than last summer because actual games have been played. Here's a look at my final ratings for 2008 draft eligible prospects:

Top 30

  1. Michael Beasley
  2. Jerryd Bayless
  3. Derrick Rose
  4. O.J. Mayo
  5. Anthony Randolph
  6. Brook Lopez
  7. Nicolas Batum
  8. Darrell Arthur
  9. Serge Ibaka
  10. Marreese Speights
  11. DeAndre Jordan
  12. Donte Greene
  13. Danilo Gallinari
  14. Joe Alexander
  15. Kevin Love
  16. Brandon Rush
  17. Eric Gordon
  18. Russell Westbrook
  19. Kosta Koufos
  20. D.J. Augustin
  21. Bill Walker
  22. Ryan Anderson
  23. JaVale McGee
  24. Robin Lopez
  25. Jason Thompson
  26. DeVon Hardin
  27. J.J. Hickson
  28. Mario Chalmers
  29. Nathan Jawai
  30. Kyle Weaver

If I could do it over:

  1. Derrick Rose -- Rose has been up and down and still needs to develop his shot, but he's shown that his athleticism, defense and play-making ability are elite. Even if the shot doesn't develop he's on his way to becoming an all-star point guard. 
  2. Brook Lopez -- Looks like an all-star center in the making. His defense has been very sound for a rookie and his offensive game is working. The rebounding needs to improve but there's no indication it won't.
  3. Russell Westbrook -- Westbrook jumps 15 spots in my ratings. It looks like he'll be able to make it at the point after all. He's a potential top 5 defender at the point in the future and he's been able to score. Needs to develop his perimeter shooting.
  4. O.J. Mayo -- Mayo has been very good for a bad team. The only thing holding him back from being the top guard is his defensive ability. It's not bad by any means but he's not the elite defender Rose and Westbrook are.
  5. Anthony Randolph -- Nelson drives me crazy. Randolph should be playing more minutes more consistently than he is. This kid is a real talent. Still young and thin but he's coming along and is very skilled. His height, wingspan and athleticism are an amazing combination. He's a really dangerous shot-blocker at the small forward or power forward position. I still think he has a chance to be the top player of his class.
  6. Jerryd Bayless -- Victim of circumstance. Portland is the best of the lottery teams and Bayless is stuck behind more experienced players. He's still a heck of a talent, though, so it's hard to drop him very far. Probably won't be the defender Rose and Westbrook are and may not develop into a great point, but I still think he's the best scorer of the top guards. Doesn't have the size to be a combo in the League so Mayo gets the nod over him.
  7. Michael Beasley -- So he's not the next Barkley, but he's still good and has a lot of potential. His playing time has been up and down so it's tough to get a good read on what he'll do as a full-time starter, but I think he'll rebound a bit in his second season. Then again you never know. Maybe the character concerns were legit.
  8. Eric Gordon -- I undervalued this guy in a big way and he's done nothing but prove me wrong. He's been great immediately for an underachieving team. I think he's got a bright future. Great shooter and scorer and can defend better than I thought.
  9. Marreese Speights -- He's skilled with great athleticism for his size. Has a chance to rise like Randolph. Very high ceiling. Wait till year three or four comes; he could be an all-star forward. Not on the Al Jefferson level but will be very good.
  10. Jason Thompson -- From what I saw before the season Thompson was a skilled big man around the basket who took advantage of weak competition. I had no idea he would be that good away from the basket. A fun player to watch who's only going to get better.
  11. DeAndre Jordan -- Hasn't had the consistent playing time to really prove himself, but the talent is there and he's done very well in short stints. Is it too early to say he's the steal of the draft? Too bad he plays for the Clippers.
  12. Javale McGee -- Very athletic and tall and long. And he's got skill, too. Probably needs to beef up a little bit and adjust to the NBA level but he's got a bright future. 
  13. J.J. Hickson -- Another overlooked guy. He's strong and athletic and is quicker than I thought. He'll get more playing time in the future and when he does he'll do well. I think he's got close to 20/10 potential.
  14. Nicolas Batum -- His numbers won't wow you but the guy has started as a rookie for a playoff team. He has to develop his offensive game but, as expected, he has a chance to be an elite defender on the wing.
  15. Serge Ibaka -- Hasn't played this year but he'll get to the League eventually. Tons of potential but very, very raw. It'll be a couple years before he makes a name for himself but keep an eye out for him.
  16. Kevin Love -- Better than I thought he would be. He's a great rebounder and a smart player. He could be a 16 and 12 guy. If Jefferson is healthy the Wolves have to be feeling good about the combo they'll have going into the future.
  17. Darrell Arthur -- Started out really hot and then cooled off. Still young and a couple years from filling out his potential. When he does he could move up the list. It's all about how well he can defend. His offense is going to be solid. The fact that he's 17th on this list speaks volumes about the strength of this draft class.
  18. Danilo Gallinari -- Anyone else getting tired of European players. Sure, the kid has offensive potential but is he ever going to be able to defend? He's athletic for his size so it's possible, but not while playing under D'Antoni.
  19. Courtney Lee -- Surprisingly good. Good defender and smart player. Another good value pick.
  20. Kosta Koufos -- Skilled big man has a ways to go but he's got offensive potential. Has made decent contributions to a playoff team in his rookie season.
  21. Mario Chalmers -- Great on-ball defender. Has shown he can play the point well enough, too. Good shooter as well. In fact, now that I'm writing this I think I'm still underrating him. Oh well, too late to go back now.
  22. D.J. Augustin -- Good shooter and playmaker. I think he'll always be a defensive liability but if he continues to improve on the other end he'll be worthy of a starting job at this level.
  23. Kyle Weaver -- Still not well-known amongst casual fans, Weaver is a very good defender and a smart offensive player with a great midrange game. His perimeter shooting will improve and he should be another great value pick.
  24. Donte Greene -- Okay, so I reached and missed. He still has talent but who knows what it will turn into. I could see him being a top 10 player or the next Darius Miles.
  25. Robin Lopez -- I didn't like the Suns taking him at 15 and he hasn't done much this season but he's got good size and could turn into a very solid defender and rebounder down the road.
  26. Brandon Rush -- Was supposed to be the most NBA-ready player but he got stuck playing for the Pacers. It's not his fault. A good player but I'm not sure he'll ever be much more than he is now.
  27. Joe Alexander -- Bust? Maybe, but it's too early to write him off. After all, we all knew he was a project when he was drafted. He hasn't lost that athleticism.
  28. Ryan Anderson -- Good shooter but won't be a good defender or rebounder at his position. Was a heck of a college player, though.
  29. Luc Richard Mbah a Moute -- It's not surprising to see Moute getting on the floor because of his defense and rebounding. He's a smart, hard-nosed player who does the little things a team needs to win. That doesn't mean he doesn't have any skill, but at this point it doesn't look like he'll ever be a great perimeter player which would be the way he climbs this list.
  30. Roy Hibbert -- His slow feet haven't been as bad as I thought they would be. Still, he's not much more than a journeyman second-string center.
Category: NBA
Tags: NBA, NBA Draft, NCAAB
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