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Around the Association: 2010 NBA Draft Previews - Chicago Bulls: shooting guard or big?

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Let's take a quick look at the Chicago Bulls' draft needs. Here's who they have committed (and not) for this upcoming season...

COMMITTED MAYBE OUT?
pg Derrick Rose
Kirk Hinrich
Acie Law
Jannero Pargo
sg Ronald Murray
Devin Brown
sf Luol Deng
James Johnson
Hakim Warrick
pf Joakim Noah
Taj Gibson
Joe Alexander
Chris Richard
c Brad Miller

It looks like, without a Lottery pick, they'll have to shore up the shooting guard and center positions to backup whatever veteran free agent(s) they're able to sign.

They have only one pick: the 17th pick. Hit the jump to see what the mock draft boards think...

  • NBAdraft.net: Hassan Whiteside (c, 7'0", 227, Marshall, freshman). I'm not sure this kid is ready for the big-time yet. But as the saying goes, you can't teach height -- for the record, I absolutely cannot stand that basketball cliche. Hate it.

On NBAdraft.net's board, I think Daniel Orton's game is a little more refined for a big than Whiteside's, and NBAdraft.net has him going at #18. But I like James Anderson, the shooting guard from Oklahoma State, a little better. Even though he had a poor opening round game of the NCAA Tournament, scoring just 11 points in a 5-point loss to the athletic Georgia Tech team, I could see some of his talent, especially his hang time. He was the third-leading scorer in the NCAA last season.

  • DraftExpress: Luke Babbitt (sf, 6'7", 215, Nevada, sophomore). I highly doubt he will still be around at #17, but if he is, then he will definitely be the best player available at that slot.

Two guys that are later on the DraftExpress board are Orton and Texas sf/pf Damion James. If James is still on the board at #17 and if Orton and Anderson are taken, I think you take a best-player-available like James, who can come in and make an impact immediately. But then you have a glut at small forward, with last year's first rounder James Johnson, who I called a "Welfare Man's" (i.e., a notch below Poor Man's) Paul Pierce. Let James and Johnson duke it out, and trade the guy who's worse in training camp.

I wouldn't pick anybody who's completely unproven at #17, unless it's a big like Orton, because you've already got some issues with Johnson to work out and you really don't know who you'll sign in free agency at the 2. For example, I think drafting an Eric Bledsoe with the 17th pick would be too much of a gamble for what the Bulls will need considering the unpredictable battles for free agents.

  • Chad Ford: James Anderson. Good pick!

It's kind of interesting, but based on the roster situation, Joakim Noah may end up being a mentor to someone after this Draft is done!

NEXT: Milwaukee Bucks or 19th pick for the Boston Celtics (which I forgot to discuss)

PREVIOUS:

MIA - Riley's got some work to do (18th, 41st, 42nd, 48th picks)
SAS - Drafting guys into the Popovich system (20th, 49th picks)
POR - Odin a bigger impact than Oden? (22nd, 44th picks)
NYK - What if they don't get any marquee free agents? (38th, 39th picks)
OKC - Drafting bigs? (21st, 26th, 32nd, 51st picks)
LAL - D-Fish most talked about this summer? (43rd, 58th picks)
BOS - Oh Danny boy! (19th, 52nd picks)
PHX - Shoring up behind Amare? (46th, 60th picks)
ATL - Calling all shooting guards not named Joe (24th, 53rd picks)
ORL - Improving while Dwight improves (29th, 59th picks)
DAL - Depends on Dirk and Dampier dollars (50th, 57th picks)
CHA - S-Jax stuck (no draft picks)
DEN - Just need Coach Karl back? (no draft picks)
CLE - If you leave (no draft picks)