The NBA Draft was on Thursday. As usual, some teams did well, but others had head-scratching moves. Let’s look at five players taken by the wrong team.
Every year during the NBA Draft, there are the teams that get blessed with perfect draft picks that fill a need. There are also teams who make curious decisions on draft day, reaching for a player with a lower ceiling or one who doesn’t quite fit on the roster.
It’s absolutely no different this year. From Markelle Fultz to Lonzo Ball to De’Aaron Fox to Jordan Bell. All of these draft picks, no matter where they were taken, ended up in cities that fit their style of play and will foster their talent. Those teams will develop a roster around these draft picks — obviously not in the case of Bell — and build the franchise around them.
On the flip side of the coin, certain players get drafted to situations that don’t really make much sense. Either the player doesn’t fit the system or adds to a logjam at the position. Regardless of what the reason may be, let’s take a look at five players that were drafted tonight by the wrong team.
5. Bam Adebayo, C, Miami Heat
Bam! Miami had the No. 14 pick in Thursday’s NBA Draft and chose to use it on a center. The Heat chose Kentucky big man, Bam Adebayo at the back end of the lottery. The Wildcat is a fantastic defensive player, which is really critical in today’s NBA. Yet, the center spot seems to have vanished from today’s game, as teams have gone to smaller lineups, with guys that can shoot and defend multiple positions.
Some centers are warranted the high draft pick — due to their versatility on offense and defense. For example, Karl-Anthony Towns was deserving of being the No. 1 overall pick because of his superior offensive talent. Adebayo doesn’t necessarily give you anything remotely close to that. This past season under John Calipari, the big man averaged 13.0 points, 8.0 rebounds and 1.5 blocks per outing.
The main problem here is that the Heat are building around Goran Dragic and Hassan Whiteside. What position does Whiteside play, ladies and gentlemen? Yep, the same one that Adebayo does. So why would Pat Riley and the Heat invest a lottery pick for a position that’s already filled and disappearing in the NBA?
The elite strengths for Adebayo range from his athleticism at 6-foot-10, rebounding skills and lateral quickness. Sounds a lot like Whiteside doesn’t it? Well, it doesn’t hurt to have a backup, but the Heat had much bigger needs and it seems like Adebayo isn’t a high priority. Many thought the big wouldn’t end up in South Beach, so it seems odd that he’ll be suiting up for the Heat in the Fall.