Take heart, Pacer fans.
Grade: B- The Pacers are getting killed by most media folks for going with Miles Plumlee at No. 26, but I won't be one of them (I had the Duke center as a late first-round pick in my last two mock drafts). He was a star at a group workout in Minnesota, where all 30 teams attended, and he continued his momentum at the draft combine. He not only has great size and insane athleticism (a workout-best 41-inch vertical leap in Minnesota), but also seems to have untapped potential because of the way he was used at Duke. With Austin Rivers and Seth Curry running the show, players like Plumlee were asked to hit the boards, set screens, defend and not much more. Conveniently enough, the Pacers could always use another big man to do those same things while hoping he evolves into something more. The Pacers also took UCSB shooting guard Orlando Johnson (No. 36, via a trade with Sacramento).
Granted, I don't believe that I would've passed on Jones III or Teague. And, yes, the Pacers may
have overreached to fill a need, but here's the bottom line:
If Plumlee truly is Jeff Foster 2.0--remember, MP only played 20 minutes a night for Duke--he was well worth the pick.
Johnson looks like a player to me, even if his selection deviates, much like Danny Granger, Paul George and others, from the Pacers standard "draft strategy."