In any ordinary season for the Los Angeles Lakers, Mitch Kupchak talking about the top ten NBA Draft prospects in early January would be unheard of. However, this isn’t an ordinary season.
The Lakers are currently sat at 14-23 which would likely land them the ninth pick in June’s draft if the lottery was held today, or maybe even a top three selection if the ping pong balls went their way.
For this very reason, Lakers.com‘s Mike Trudell made sure to mention the draft to Kupchak during an extensive interview with the general manager, and Mitch agreed with the assumption that the class of 2014 could end up being one of the greatest in league history:
[pullquote]MT: Is the coming NBA Draft as deep and good as has been reported?
Kupchak: Right now, I would say one through 10 is as good as I’ve seen in a long time.
MT: Like going back to the LeBron-Anthony-Bosh-Wade 2003 Draft?
Kupchak: Yeah, that’s the first draft that comes to mind. Going into that draft, I’m not sure everyone knew that would be such a great draft, but looking back on it, it really was. We’ll have to wait and see how this one turns out, but I think it has the potential to be a heck of a draft from one through 10.[/pullquote]
Many experts are predicting that the top six spots will be the place to be seeing as the likes of Jabari Parker, Joel Embiid, Andrew Wiggins, Julius Randle, Dante Exum and Marcus Smart will probably land there, though it seems that Kupchak and his scouts feel the entire top ten could have successful careers in the NBA.
This may just be Kupchak trying to make the worried fan base feel better about the future, or he and his staff may truly feel that this draft is as deep as many pundits predict.
In reality, it’s probably a little bit of both. The Lakers know that there’s a large portion of their fan base who are concerned about the team’s future. However, a high draft pick in June could certainly help the franchise get back on the right track relatively quickly.