Nov 14, 2013; San Diego, CA, USA; Arizona Wildcats forward Aaron Gordon (11) dribbles around San Diego State Aztecs forward JJ O

2014 NBA Mock Draft: Los Angeles Lakers Select Aaron Gordon


According to BleacherReport.com’s Jonathan Wasserman, the Lakers will select Aaron Gordon with the 8th overall selection in the 2014 NBA Mock Draft. Click here for the full mock. Here’s what he had to say about the Gordon pick:

Aaron Gordon continues to play his role as an opportunistic scorer, meaning his numbers will never stand out among the other high-caliber prospects.

It’s not going to keep teams from targeting him in the top 10. Gordon’s first-class athleticism has already been confirmed; now we’re learning he’s also an excellent passer and a high-IQ presence.

The concern with Gordon is his NBA position—we’ve seen a lot of similar combo forwards struggle to make the transition, which might scare off general managers who fear the next Anthony Bennett, Derrick Williams, Thomas Robinson or Michael Beasley.

Still, his intangibles, athleticism and ceiling should act as a flotation device for his draft stock. Gordon should float around the late-lottery range from now until June.

If I’m the Lakers, I’m into Gordon’s upside at a position in which they have none.

 

I agree with almost everything Jonathan had to say about Gordon. Gordon is probably the best pure athlete in the draft, and that’s saying something considering Andrew Wiggins and Joel Embiid are both in the draft. He plays smart and doesn’t make a lot of mistakes. He scores when the defense gives in to him and can take the ball to the hoop with ease.

Gordon is probably at the tail end of the top prospects in the draft considering he is not a dominant scorer. However, his freakish athleticism and high quality defense will give him the ability to play at a high level in the NBA until he develops an outside shot. His athleticism has led to comparisons to Blake Griffin, but I don’t think that is the most comparable NBA player, although it gives him a hell of a ceiling.

Similar to SDSU alum and current Spurs forward, Kawhi Leonard, Gordon is a bit of a tweener forward that is forced to play down low in the NCAA. Also similar to Kawhi, Gordon has the athleticism to be a lockdown defender at the 3 position and is a shot (for Kawhi, the corner 3) away from being a fixture in any starting 5. I would even go out on a limb and say the ceiling for Gordon is higher than Leonard.

Gordon plays with tenacity and works constantly to improve. The latter is probably the most important trait in the draft, and with a guy that is arguably as athletic as LeBron James, having that work ethic to improve could push him into superstardome. Gordon’s work ethic, combined with Kobe’s knowledge and desire to pass the torch, would revert the culture of the Lakers back to winning in seconds. And, I’m not embellishing him. Take a look at his game highlights below and be amazed:

What would you guys think if the Lakers selected Aaron Gordon with the 8th pick?

Tags: 2014 Mock Draft Featured Los Angeles Lakers Mock Draft Popular

  • Mike Garcia

    I would keep him as a project player and hope he can develop into a face up 4 with guard skills. I don’t think he can hang at the 3.

    • Conor Cahill

      He has way more athleticism than Kawhi though. I didn’t agree with the Anthony Bennett or Thomas Robsinson comparisons. Just because he is an undersized 4 in college, doesn’t mean he can’t play the 4 in the NBA, or the 3 for that matter. I think Derrick Williams is a better comparison, who I think we be much better if he could get on the right squad like Kawhi did.

      • Mike Garcia

        It isn’t about the athleticism. Kawhi has a center’s wingspan and a center’s hands. He was a lot more lean and retained better quickness and speed. Essentially, he was a SF with tremendous physical tools, so he got away with playing PF at SDSU. NBA level? SF. Great motor, still rebounds, but struggles to create shots on the perimeter. He has an improving jumpshot and finishes well in the paint, but doesn’t change direction well. Otherwise, I think San Antonio would actually feature him more as an offensive option.

        In regards to Gordon, he’s a PF that happens to have perimeter skills. He’s most natural in the paint, not away from it. There, he can exploit his strength and explosiveness around the hoop. His perimeter abilites are more refined than Blake Griffin’s, but he’s a stand-still shooter and a direct driver to the basket. He could use a better post up game and he has surprising body control around the paint. I do liken Gordon to Griffin, because Griffin has shown similar ball-handling ability, but just doesn’t use it. He needed his 2nd year to really maximize his strength and become a true gladiator out there.

        I like Aaron a lot. I think his natural position is PF at the NBA level. I worry he’ll be caught up as a tweener if he doesn’t use his power/explosiveness/post play in the paint. Derrick Williams didn’t, and it didn’t get him anywhere near his projected upside. Blake Griffin did, and the rest is history.

    • Conor Cahill

      He’s definitely on the tail end of the top guys in this draft, but damn he looks like he has potential. I could see him going over Wiggins just because he is working and improving, not regressing.

  • Jim213

    SMH, both J Parker and Embiid have recently mentioned they’ll likely remain an extra year in college. Redo

    • Mike Garcia

      They may say that now, but it’s too early in the season.

      • Jim213

        True, but it may come down to value being if they’ve exceeded expectations or have dropped. Although, IMO one will remain in college out of the two.

        • Conor Cahill

          Probably Parker.

          • Jim213

            I thought the same but… ‘Joel Embiid’s entry into the 2014 draft isn’t a certainty, according to a report by ESPNs D O’Neil.”