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2009-10 NBA Rookie Thoughts - Part II

Stephen Curry is the most talented shooting guard in the draft and has unlimited range.
Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) - Last week we looked at a few surefire soon-to-be millionaires who will likely be worthy of selection in next year's NBA fantasy draft. Now we'll look at a few players who will be drafted a little bit lower in the draft. They have some holes in their game, but given the right situation, they could become solid fantasy players.

Stephen Curry, SG, Davidson - The son of NBA pro Dell Curry, Stephen is the most talented shooting guard in the draft and has unlimited range. But at 6'3" and 185 pounds, there may be some questions about his ability to defend the opposing No.2 guard. He'll need to bulk up a bit, but there is no question that he'll be a lottery pick. As for his fantasy value, the number of minutes he'll be on the floor will all depend on how much he improves at the defensive end. He should put up a lot more points than J.J. Redick (14.8 minutes, 6.0 ppg), but less than Jason Terry in his 2000-01 rookie season (37.7 minutes, 19.7 ppg).

Ty Lawson, PG, North Carolina - Lawson's value skyrocketed after his performance in the 2009 NCAA tournament. He's the best "floor general" in the draft. His progress from junior year to senior year was impressive. Lawson won't score a great deal in the NBA, at least as a rookie, but he should be a solid point guard (10.0 ppg, 8.0 apg) in his first year. Points will come in subsequent seasons.

DeJuan Blair, PF, Pittsburgh - Blair is an unusual situation because he's a "tweener." However, his high quality performances in the tough Big East conference will lend someone to take a shot with him in the top-15. He could either be a Corliss Williamson (5.6 ppg, 2.2 rpg in rookie season) or a Drew Gooden type (12.5 ppg, 6.5 rpg). Needs to work on a 15-foot jump shot because he won't be able to muscle his way inside every game like he did at the college level.

Earl Clark, SF, Louisville - Clark is one of the most athletic players available in the draft, maybe No.2 behind Blake Griffin. Has a good jump shot and could be a very good wing player on an up tempo team, like the Phoenix Suns or New York Knicks. Think Richard Jefferson.

Chase Budinger, SF, Arizona - Budinger has a balanced game, both inside and outside. He can jump through the roof on his way to the hoop or hit the three ball. Tends to lose concentration at times. Think Stephen Jackson.

2008-09 Collegiate Statistics
PlayerSchoolMINPPGRPGAPGSPGBPGFG%3PT%FT%
Stephen CurryDAV33.728.64.45.62.50.245.438.787.6
Ty LawsonNC29.916.63.06.62.10.153.247.279.8
DeJuan BlairPIT27.315.712.31.21.51.059.300.060.5
Earl ClarkLOU34.314.28.73.21.01.445.732.664.7
Chase BudingerAZ37.618.26.23.41.40.548.039.980.1


Comments? Criticism? Applause? Contact Steve Schwarz at sschwarz@sportsnetwork.com.

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