SIMMONS: Why isn't MKG a sure thing? You know what you're getting — he's the most competitive guy...


SIMMONS: Why isn't MKG a sure thing? You know what you're getting — he's the most competitive guy in the draft, he's an incredible athlete, his teams win everywhere he goes, he's the prototypical über-athlete swing guy who can defend three positions, and he could absolutely be the second-best or third-best player on a title contender some day. I'm judging every lottery pick in this draft by one question: "Could you have played in that insanely athletic 2012 Finals I just watched?" We can't say that's where the NBA might be headed because it's already there — we just saw it. And for MKG, the answer is, "Yes, he would have absolutely fit into that Finals … and maybe even slowed down Durant or LeBron a little." I don't care that he can't shoot yet. He'll figure it out. I agree with you — Pippen is the right comparison here. But it's his competitiveness that really stands out for me. You stick someone on your team who cares that much and everything else will fall into place. Eventually. Naturally, he'll probably drop to fifth because this continues to be the dumbest professional sports league on the planet. FORD: If Kidd-Gilchrist falls to the Warriors at seven, I think they make the playoffs in 2013. SIMMONS: That's not fair. You just got the Warriors fans' hopes up — they're sitting there reading this piece and minding their own business, and out of nowhere, you set them up for yet another massive disappointment. The poor Warriors fans even get stomach-punched in hypothetical NBA drafts.

Simmons and Ford talk draft in Grantland. Highly entertaining stuff. I suspect MT2 is about right when he rates the chances of MKG falling to us at 5%. Still, when Jerry West talks with Kawakami and Steinmetz about how one of the rarest qualities in a player is true toughness ("dirtiness," laying it all on the line every night, etc.) he might as well have been holding up a photo of Michael Freaking Kidd Gilchrist. Make it happen, ye hoops Gods!