Andre Drummond has all the upside of an Amar'e Stoudemire...but the HQ is hoping the Toronto Raptors look the other way come draft day.
There's absolutely nothing logical about my fear.
Andre Drummond, the 6-10 forward from UCONN who officially entered the NBA draft this afternoon, could indeed be listed as physically intimidating.
But he hasn't threatened me in any way.
Mentally though, his declaration of intent to enter the L has me scared stiff as a Raptors' fan. I'm not sure why, but I can't escape this feeling that Mr. Drummond is going to find his way onto the club's roster via the upcoming draft.
I know, he's a power forward at the next level, maybe a center at times if he keeps growing (only Michael Kidd-Gilchrist is younger in this draft class) so from a "fit" perspective, drafting him would make no sense for the Dinos. They've got a logjam at those spots now with Jonas Valanciunas on the way.
And as another player who looks years away from being able to consistently contribute, he hardly seems like the type Bryan Colangelo would invest time and effort into right? This club needs to start adding some proven NBA-level players and while the upside is certainly there for Drummond, he is anything but a polished product.
So I'm overreacting right? Time to turn my attention back to the end of the season and worry about the draft when workouts start to roll around?
No go. At present, the Raptors could easily find themselves drafting in the 5 to 7 range when all is said and done and assuming your top four picks are Anthony Davis, and then some order of Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Thomas Robinson and Bradley Beal that leaves...
Yes. That leaves me shuddering.
I'm convinced that we're talking about the next Kwame Brown here, no wait, the next Chris Taft! (Pre-health issues that is.) Here's the player who was at one point viewed as potentially a better NBA prospect than Anthony Davis, yet shot under 30 per cent from the free-throw line last season and was maddingly inconsistent at both ends of the floor. Sure, he blocked nearly three shots a match, but 10 points and 7.6 rebounds? Shouldn't a prospect possessing his physical attributes be able to do that in their sleep?
I don't see the next Amar'e when I watch Drummond. (And watch him I did, many a time this past NCAA season.) I see four years of "but wait, look at his upside!" and "he had a double-double last night, he's getting it!" Raptors fans have seen this story time and time again, be it Joey Graham or even presently, with Andrea Bargnani. The franchise needs to hit a few solid triples here and the drafting of Drummond to me would represent something of an attempt at an inside the park home run; it looks good for a while, but in the end you're tagged out trying for home.
I'm happy for Drummond in that he's living out his dream of playing in the NBA, but I'm begging the Toronto Raptors to turn and walk the other way come draft day.
Yes, even if that means passing on the next Dwight Howard.
Bryan, sometimes when your gut screams "HOFFA!" in these matters, you just need to go with it, trust me.