Magic pick Andrew Nicholson in 2012 NBA Draft


The Orlando Magic drafted St. Bonaventure forward Andrew Nicholson with the 19th pick in the NBA Draft on Thursday. Nicholson was the Atlantic-10 Player of the Year last year as he averaged 18.5 points per game and 57.1 percent from the floor. Instant analysis coming up right here in a second. In the meantime, read my profile of Andrew Nicholson.

19. Orlando Magic
My Pick: Arnett Moultrie; Real Pick: Andrew Nicholson (St. Bonaventure)

Rob Hennigan did not disappoint with his first pick with the Magic. He went with an experienced player who should be able to contribute immediately. Nicholson is a great scorer who is developing his jump shot. He still needs to work on his rebounding, as he is not quite a stretch four. But he is athletic enough perhaps to get out to the perimeter and defend some of the bigger small forwards.


The Magic pick 19th in the Draft and are patiently waiting their turn. No one is quite sure where Orlando will go with this pick, what the team is looking for or what is going on behind the scenes. There is a lot of intrigue and importance put on this pick, seeing as it is Rob Hennigan’s first big move with Orlando.

With that we patiently watch the draft.

Stick here for some instant reactions on picks — particularly the Magic’s pick — and a look at my thoughts on the Draft.

1. New Orleans Hornets
My Pick: Anthony Davis; Real Pick: Anthony Davis (Kentucky)

No brainer here. Davis is the best player in this draft and has crazy length and athleticism. He has great instincts defensively and will be a franchise cornerstone. Is he Dwight Howard good? Not likely. Good enough for the Hornets to begin rebuilding after Chris Paul? Absolutely.

2. Charlotte Bobcats
My Pick: Thomas Robinson; Real Pick: Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (Kentucky)

Michael Kidd-Gilchrist looks and moves like an NBA player. There may not be another player in this Draft who you can say that about. Kidd-Gilchrist has a lot of skills that will translate immediately to the league. Certainly, he will do a lot more than Corey Maggette did in the same spot.

3. Washington Wizards
My Pick: Bradley Beal; Real Pick: Bradley Beal (Florida)

Beal is a fantastic shooter and a great overall talent. He never really got the opportunity to show it fully at Florida. It took Billy Donovan nearly the entire year to figure out how to use him properly. Is he NBA ready? I am not so sure. Certainly as a jump shooter he is. The rest of his game needs some work. But it can get there.

4. Cleveland Cavaliers
My Pick: Michael Kidd-Gilchrist; Real Pick: Dion Waiters (Syracuse)

First really big surprise of this Draft. Waiters shot up the draft boards with a big workout and rumors of the promise. But nobody saw him going fourth in the Draft. Waiters is an athletic slasher, but a bit of a tweener. Is he going to take some point guard minutes from Kyrie Irving. I am not so sure about this pick.

5. Sacramento Kings
My Pick: Harrison Barnes; Real Pick: Thomas Robinson (Kansas)

There may not be a more polished player in this draft than Thomas Robinson. Robinson has a solid post game and is a good defender. His athleticism is a little suspect, but he will make up for that with grit and hustle. Will be interesting to see how he fits in with DeMarcus Cousins.

6. Portland Trail Blazers (from Brooklyn)
My Pick: Damian Lillard; Real Pick: Damian Lillard (Weber State)

Lillard may not be a name that is real familiar to many college basketball fans. But he is a great great scorer. He lit up the Big Sky Conference and looks like a guy who can run the pick and roll. As always the question is, can he be a great ball-handler at the next level?

7. Golden State Warriors
My Pick: Andre Drummond; Real Pick: Harrison Barnes (North Carolina)

I really thought the Warriors were going to fall in love with Drummond’s potential and go big, like they always seem to do. Kudos to them for taking Barnes. As they said on the ESPN broadcast, he has an NBA game and will likely play better on that level than in college. Barnes is a great mid-range shooter and can get out on the run. A very good pick for the Warriors.

8. Toronto Raptors
My Pick: Dion Waiters; Real Pick: Terrence Ross (Washington)

A little bit of a reach, but as I took a look in my draft profile, Ross is a talented player who can get out on the wings and fit in with a team. He is a carbon copy of DeMar DeRozan with a little more length. He has to improve his shooting and extend his range.

9. Detroit Pistons
My Pick: John Henson; Real Pick: Andre Drummond (Connecticut)

Drummond had a very poor season at Connecticut in his freshman year. He is just a bundle of potential at this point and not a lot of actual production. Personally, I am not sold on him. Worse of all, I think he is going to stunt Greg Monroe’s growth.

10. New Orleans Hornets (from Minnesota via L.A. Clippers)
My Pick: Austin Rivers; Real Pick: Austin Rivers (Duke)

Rivers is a guy that needs the ball in his hands. That will make this pick interesting. Rivers likely takes over the point guard role with Eric Gordon running the wings and Anthony Davis on the pick and roll. Could this be a more perfect spot for him? Rivers is going to get the ball and Monty Williams will let him roll. Great situation for him.

11. Portland Trail Blazers
My Pick: Tyler Zeller; Real Pick: Meyers Leonard (Illinois)

This is my 95-percent sure bust in the first round. And I am not saying that as a Northwestern fan (partially, I am). Leonard is long and has height. But he needs to put on a lot of muscle and he is going to have to work on his anticipation and timing at this level. That is a lot for him to work on.

12. Houston Rockets (from Milwaukee)
My Pick: Jeremy Lamb; Real Pick: Jeremy Lamb (Connecticut)

Lamb is a good scorer and a guy who can penetrate and get to the basket. That is what he is great at doing. He is adept at the pick and roll. Needs to improve his jumper. Who knows what Houston will end up doing with him.

13. Phoenix Suns
My Pick: Kendall Marshall; Real Pick: Kendall Marshall (North Carolina)

Absolutely love this pick for Phoenix. Marshall is a strong point guard and a great passer. Whether the Suns keep Steve Nash or not they have their point guard of the future on the roster. The offense is perfect for a guy like Marshall to come in and run.

14. Milwaukee Bucks (from Houston)
My Pick: Meyers Leonard; Real Pick: John Henson (North Carolina)

Henson is extremely raw, but has good basketball instincts. He is good defensively and a stalwart on the defensive end. It will be interesting to see how he translates to the NBA. He needs to continue developing his offense.

15. Philadelphia 76ers
My Pick: Terrence Jones; Real Pick: Maurice Harkless (St. John’s)

The 76ers went with Harkless as a potential replacement for Andre Iguodala (if they ever get around to trading him). Harkless is a great player who can score and attack the rim. He really needs to work on his jumper and that is where he is not quite Iguodala yet. Very interesting to watch Philadelphia’s moves.

16. Houston Rockets (from New York)
My Pick: Perry Jones III; Real Pick: Royce White (Iowa State)

Royce White is a puzzle. He is athletic, but a little hefty. He has a lot of upside, but a strange past. This is a really interesting player. Not quite sure how he fits. Then again, I am not quite sure what exactly Houston is doing. So flip a coin and find out if Royce White will work!

17. Dallas Mavericks
My Pick: Maurice Harkless; Real Pick: Tyler Zeller (North Carolina)

Zeller is very similar to Henson in his ability to block shots and how far behind his offensive game is. Zeller might be a little stronger, but has less upside. Dallas traded this pick to Cleveland, so this might end up being a Zydrunas Ilgauskas redux.

18. Houston Rockets (from Utah via Minnesota)
My Pick: Jared Sullinger; Real Pick: Terrence Jones (Kentucky)

As I wrote in my draft profile, Jones is the biggest tweener in this draft. He has a ton of talent and a lot of athleticism. But no one is quite sure if he is a small forward or a power forward. He could be both. He could be neither. Either way, his jump shot is a bit suspect.

19. Orlando Magic
My Pick: Arnett Moultrie; Real Pick: Andrew Nicholson (St. Bonaventure)

Rob Hennigan did not disappoint with his first pick with the Magic. He went with an experienced player who should be able to contribute immediately. Nicholson is a great scorer who is developing his jump shot. He still needs to work on his rebounding, as he is not quite a stretch four. But he is athletic enough perhaps to get out to the perimeter and defend some of the bigger small forwards.

20. Denver Nuggets
My Pick: Andrew Nicholson; Real Pick: Evan Fournier (France)

Fournier is an interesting guard prospect for the Nuggets. This is a team that is loaded with talent. I think they will be OK with stashing him in Europe for a few years to let him develop. If he comes over, he is a decent shooter and a guy who can put the ball on the floor.

21. Boston Celtics
My Pick: Royce White; Real Pick: Jared Sullinger (Ohio State)

Sullinger is a very polished sophomore who is just a smart basketball player. He has the lingering back issue that led to his fall down into the draft. That does not mean Boston did not get a bargain. Sullinger does not have athleticism and plays below the rim, but is a tough-minded defender and will fit into that team’s culture.

22. Boston Celtics (from L.A. Clippers via Oklahoma City)
My Pick: Terrence Ross; Real Pick: Fab Melo (Syracuse)

Melo will be intriguing for Boston. He is a defensive minded center like Jermaine O’Neal was before his knees decided to retire five years before O’Neal did. Boston has not had an athletic defender like him during this new Big Three era. It will be interesting to see how he fits in. But is Melo really an improvement over Ryan Hollins? Seriously? You don’t have to answer.

23. Atlanta Hawks
My Pick: Marquis Teague; Real Pick: John Jenkins (Vanderbilt)

Jenkins might be the best shooter in this draft (no disrespect to Bradley Beal). That is something Atlanta still needs to amass to help free up space for their one-on-one offense. Jenkins does not have a lot of other skills though. And that is the problem with him. He has to add something else to his game, particularly on the defensive end.

24. Cleveland Cavaliers (from L.A. Lakers)
My Pick: Fab Melo; Real Pick: Jared Cunningham (Oregon State)

Cunningham looks to be the point guard the Mavericks wanted as this pick will head to Dallas. He had to have the ball a lot for Oregon State and played well. But consider this, if there is one team that is as futile as my Northwestern Wildcats, it is the Oregon State Beavers. Munch on that for a while.

25. Memphis Grizzlies
My Pick: Evan Fournier; Real Pick: Tony Wroten (Washington)

Wroten is a great ball handler and a guy that can get to the basket, especially on the break. But that is all he can do. He has a lot of holes in his game that he has to find a way to fill. That is not an easy thing to do in the NBA.

26. Indiana Pacers
My Pick: Jeffery Taylor; Real Pick: Miles Plumlee (Duke)

Not really sure what to think of him. He was a big hustle guy at Duke and so that will help him at the next level. He could surprise with Indiana. But don’t the Pacers have enough of these guys on their roster?

27. Miami Heat
My Pick: Draymond Green; Real Pick: Arnett Moultrie (Mississippi State)

This pick is going to Philadelphia, so calm down Orlando fans. He is not going to terrorizing the Southeast Division (or maybe anywhere). Moultrie was my pick for the Magic in my mock draft. He has a ton of talent and a pretty good offensive game. He also has a good knack for rebounding as he led the SEC in that category. If Philadelphia wants to amnesty Elton Brand, they got a pretty nice replacement for him in Moultrie, perhaps.

28. Oklahoma City Thunder
My Pick: John Jenkins; Real Pick: Perry Jones III (Baylor)

If the Thunder wanted to continue stocking up on athletes. They did that with Jones. Jones reportedly got red flagged with a knee issue and that caused him to really really drop. Jones has a ton of talent though and is an absolute steal at No. 28. He really struggled to produce though at Baylor last year. He probably could have used another year of development and seasoning.

29. Chicago Bulls
My Pick: Quincy Miller; Real Pick: Marquis Teague (Kentucky)

Teague is a decent point guard and someone that should help fill in for Derrick Rose next year. He is not a starter quite yet. He can run the fast break and get to the hoop. Learning to play point guard at the next level is a different issue.

30. Golden State Warriors (from San Antonio)
My Pick: Will Barton; Real Pick: Festus Ezeli (Vanderbilt)

Ezeli will have minimal impact on the offensive end, but is one of the best defenders in the SEC. He has to improve his strength and he does not have the height you want from a center. But Golden State needs anyone who will focus on the defensive end right now.