This is Part 1 of a series where I revisit old drafts to see which players were busts, just right, or came out of nowhere to achieve stardom. This idea is inspired by Bill Simmons of the Ringer Podcast Network. Picks 1-5 will have explanations as to why they were selected where they were.
The 2013 draft class was labeled as one that was “weak” and one of “very little depth” according to experts. But looking back at the draft, we can see how many stars and solid starters were in this unpredictable mix.
In this redraft, we have the benefit of hindsight. We know what these players would turn into. GM’s in 2013 probably had no idea that Giannis Antetokounmpo would one day be the NBA MVP based on grainy footage from a greek YMCA. Or that Rudy Gobert would turn into the NBA’s best shot blocker.
Now, let’s get into the redraft.
1) Cleveland – Giannis Antetokounmpo (15th): Original Pick – Anthony Bennett
This first pick really needs little explanation. Giannis turned into an NBA superstar, seemingly out of nowhere. Looking back, the Bucks made a great selection with their pick, and Giannis will be a valuable pick for years to come.
2) Orlando – CJ McCollum (10th): Original Pick – Victor Oladipo
For the second pick, one could make the case for Victor Oladipo. However, I believe CJ McCollum has proved slightly more so far. Coming out of Lehigh, CJ was relatively underrated by scouts.
CJ has since proved them wrong. He has shown that he can be trusted with the ball in late-game situations on playoff-caliber teams. He has also displayed that he is someone who can shoot from deep and score with ease.
3) Washington – Victor Oladipo (2nd): Original Pick – Otto Porter
Oladipo has shown he can be an elite NBA player. The two-time all-star has shown that when healthy, he can lead a team into the playoffs. He is a gifted scorer and has inhuman athleticism.
4) Charlotte – Rudy Gobert (27th): Original Pick – Cody Zeller
Gobert has shown he is a premier shot-blocker in today’s NBA. He is a big man that can guard everyone in the pick and roll and swat every shot that comes his way.
5) Phoenix – Steven Adams (12th): Original Pick – Alex Len
Adams is exactly what you want in an NBA big man. He is mobile, good in the Pick & Roll on both ends, and plays his heart out every night. In this draft, Adams has a very high value.
6) New Orleans traded to 76ers – Dennis Schröder (17th)
Original Pick – Nerlens Noel
7) Sacramento – Tim Hardaway (24th)
Original Pick – Ben McLemore
8) Detroit – Otto Porter Jr (3rd)
Original Pick – Kentavious Caldwell-Pope
9) Minnesota traded to Utah – Kelly Olynyk (13th)
Original Pick – Trey Burke
10) Portland – Kentavious Caldwell Pope (8th)
Original Pick – CJ McCollum
11) Philadelphia – Cody Zeller (4th)
Original Pick – Michael Carter-Williams
12) Oklahoma City – Mason Plumlee (22nd)
Original Pick – Steven Adams
13) Boston via Dallas – Trey Burke (9th)
Original Pick – Kelly Olynyk
14) Utah traded to Minnesota – André Roberson (26th)
Original Pick – Shabazz Muhammad
Best Undrafted Player – Robert Covington (not eligible in re-draft)