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2011 NBA Draft, Re-Drafted

2011 NBA Draft, Re-Drafted. The 2011 NBA Draft consisted of stars, role players, and busts, just as any draft does. Here is a re-draft of the top 10 picks.

Similar to all NBA player drafts, the 2011 NBA Draft consisted of stars, role players, and busts.  Nearly four years later after seeing how the players developed, it is an appropriate time to re-visit some of the selections made in June of 2011. Here is a re-draft of the top 10 picks:

2011 NBA Draft, Re-Drafted

1) Cleveland Cavaliers: Kyrie Irving (1) – Since Irving’s lone season at Duke was shortened due to injury, it was unknown how good he would be in the NBA. Four years later, Irving’s talent is no longer in question, and neither is his ability to contribute to a winning team. Irving is an elite shooter, ball-handler, passer, and finisher, which are four skills that any coach looks for in his point guard. He is a flashy player who draws “oohs” and “aahs” from the crowd, yet he still knows how to get the job done at both ends of the floor. There is no doubt that Irving is one of the top players in our game today, and he is certainly worthy of the top selection in our re-draft. The Cavs nailed it here. The original pick: Kyrie Irving

2) Minnesota Timberwolves: Jimmy Butler (30) – Jumping 28 spots in the first round is a tremendous leap for Butler, but he is definitely worthy. Butler has fully emerged as one of the best, if not the best, two-way shooting guards in the NBA this season. Assuming the Kevin Love trade still went through, a combination of Butler and Andrew Wiggins on the wing would be scary good, especially on the defensive end. Minnesota could have had a dynamic 1-2 punch on the perimeter for the foreseeable future; instead, they were stuck with Derrick Williams for two full seasons until he was shipped to Sacramento.  The original pick: Derrick Williams

3) Utah Jazz: Klay Thompson (11) – Shooting guard Klay Thompson is having a breakout season as one of the NBA’s best shooters. Thompson is averaging nearly 22 points per game in 2014-15 and could have served as an excellent fit alongside Gordon Hayward in Utah. In retrospect, Thompson would have been an excellent choice for the Jazz. A roster with Thompson, Hayward, Derrick Favors and Rudy Gobert is certainly worthy of playoff contention, even in the loaded West. The original pick: Enes Kanter

4) Cleveland Cavaliers: Kawhi Leonard (15) – Leonard has hardware that no one else in this draft class can claim they have (an NBA Finals MVP Trophy), yet he is not as talented of a scorer as many other players in his class. Leonard has not shown that significant improvement and consistency on the offensive end that so many NBA fans have expected from him. In order to take the next step as a true star in the NBA, Leonard must take significant strides on the offensive end. From a defensive standpoint, Leonard’s superior athleticism and enormous hands allow him to serve as one of the league’s best defenders. Had the draft gone down like this, Kyrie Irving and Kawhi Leonard would have served as two tremendous building blocks for the then-struggling Cleveland Cavaliers. The original pick: Tristan Thompson

5) Toronto Raptors: Nikola Vucevic (16) – The Raptors drafted a center back in 2011, but not Vucevic. Vucevic is one of the most under-appreciated players in basketball with his quietly unnoticed  2014-15 averages of 19 points and 11 rebounds per game.  He is a versatile scorer who has shown the ability to rack up points with both his post moves down low and his swift midrange jump shot just inside the arc. Vucevic has always cleaned up the boards nicely too, as evident by his 11+ rebounds per game in each of the past three seasons. He could have served as a major scoring presence inside for the guard-heavy Toronto Raptors. The original pick: Jonas Valanciunas

6) Washington Wizards: Chandler Parsons (38) – Parsons is the fifth straight player who was drafted outside of the top 10 in 2011 but is inside of the top 10 of our re-draft. He is a very good shooter who understands the game extremely well and knows how to be a main contributor on a contending team. Parsons was wildly undervalued on draft day; his production so far in the NBA has overly exceeded what is expected of second round picks. Joining John Wall and eventually Bradley Beal in the nation’s capitol would have been a terrific fit for both Parsons and the Wizards. The original pick: Jan Vesely

7) Charlotte Hornets (via Sacramento Kings): Kemba Walker (9) – Charlotte took the former UConn star two picks later with their own pick, and he has flourished in the Queen City ever since. Walker is an above average point guard who helped lead Charlotte to a surprising playoff appearance last season. In our re-draft, Detroit would have probably snagged Walker with the eighth pick, so it’s important for Charlotte to take him here and not wait until the ninth pick. The original pick: Bismack Biyombo

8) Detroit Pistons: Enes Kanter (3) – Kanter’s tenure in Utah did not end too well, but he has thrived ever since being acquired by Oklahoma City about a month ago. Kanter is an extremely skilled big man who has a soft touch around the rim and is an effective rebounder. He is also very durable, something that has become increasingly important for centers of the modern NBA (think of Yao Ming and Greg Oden). The original pick: Brandon Knight

9) Charlotte Hornets: Markieff Morris (13) – Morris is combo forward who does not tend to receive the attention from the national media that he deserves. He is a terrific player who is able to score in so many ways; he’s a good shooter, an effective slasher, and even a decent one-on-one player. Morris has been a key piece of Phoenix’s revival the past two seasons, and he does it at both ends of the floor. Morris is the type of player who can fit in with just about any team in any situation. He would be a good addition to Kemba Walker in Charlotte. The original pick: Kemba Walker

10) Sacramento Kings (via Milwaukee Bucks): Tobias Harris (19) –  Harris is an intriguing player due to the situation down in Orlando. Are his stats padded because of the lack of other options in Orlando, or is Harris truly a talented player? It is likely the latter and free agency may demonstrate his value in the league and be a great addition to a team.  Harris is similar to Markieff Morris in the sense that he is a combo forward who finds many different ways to put the ball through the hoop. Harris would have been quality pickup for the Kings here with the 10th pick. The original pick: Jimmer Fredette


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