With the NBA draft just days away (Thursday, June 25th) the Jazz are working out dozens of potential draft picks. With the 20th pick, it can be a real gamble as to who will be available and who can really contribute to the team.The Jazz have had mixed success when picking late in the draft (about like everybody else) but they have been able to find some real diamonds in the rough. I’ll yield to the ‘brighter’ minds when it comes to evaluating players. Personally, I think the Jazz need to get bigger and tougher. Several mock drafts are pointing to Tyler Hansbrough as a likely selection. IMO, the North Carolina stand-out would make a good addition to the Jazz. He’s got size, championship experience, well-rounded game, and don’t let that baby face fool you, he plays tough.Here’s a breakdown of various mock-drafts and who the Jazz might select.
: Terrence Williams / 6-6 / 213 lbs / SG/SF / Louisville / Sr. (2nd round – Rodrigue Beaubois / 6-2 / 182 lbs / PG / France / Intl)
<a href=”http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2009/writers/ian_thomsen/06/16/mock.draft3.2/index.html”>Sports Illustrated</a>
: SF Omri Casspi / Maccabi Tel Aviv / (Israel) / 6-9 211 / He needs to improve his shooting, but this ultra-aggressive forward looks like an eventual high-energy replacement for Matt Harpring. Casspi is a Jerry Sloan player.
<a href=”http://msn.foxsports.com/nba/story/9689114/2009-NBA-mock-draft:-Version-2.0″>Fox Sports</a>
: Tyler Hansbrough / PF / 6-9 / 234 / UNC / Senior With Boozer likely on the way out, Hansbrough would provide an excellent replacement to go with their new inside stud, Paul Millsap. Hansbrough helped his cause at the combine, measuring and testing nearly identical to Blake Griffin.
<a href=”http://www.cbssports.com/nba/draft/mock”>CBS Sportsline</a>
: three different mock drafts, three different players – B.J. Mullens, Omri Casspi, Tyler Hansbrough.
: Tyler Hansbrough / PF / 23 years old / 6’9″ / 230 lbs. /North Carolina / Senior (2nd round – Paul Harris SF 22 years old; 6’4″; 220 lbs. Syracuse, Junior)
<a href=”http://sports.yahoo.com/nba/news;_ylt=AmGPhMLv1eyRuVLgIoZ6PXPPgq9_?slug=ys-mockdraft062309&prov=yhoo&type=lgns”>Yahoo! Sports</a>
: B.J. Mullens, C, Ohio State: There are better athletes available at this spot, but Mullens is an intriguing post player who is early in his development. Coach Jerry Sloan would enjoy the chance to work with the 7-footer, who some compare to Chris Kaman (2nd round – 50. Utah Jazz– Aaron Jackson, SG, Duquesne: Dropped 46 points on Virginia Tech in NIT game.)
: Tyler Hansbrough 6-9 PF North Carolina / SeniorOne of the most productive players in college basketball. A beast around the basket– relishes contact and makes a living with an incredibly soft touch and pure tenacity. Gets to the free throw line at a superb rate. Unstoppable motor—a true competitor. Face-up game is coming around but still needs work. Lacks size, length, quickness and explosiveness, which limits him defensively, and is a bit more advanced age-wise than most players in his class. Average passer. A bit mechanical.
:Sam Young, SF, 6-6, 220, Pittsburgh, Senior, 19.2 ppg, 6.3 rpg, 1.1 apg, 1.0 spg, 50.2% FG, 37.2% 3FG. Unusual player that reminds some of Josh Howard in that he seems good at just about everything but not great at any one thing. But a real baller. He’s already 24, though. So how big is his upside?
: Tyler Hansbrough Ht/Wt: 6-9 / 250 lbs Position: PF Team: North Carolina Class: Senior
: Omri Casspi (SF – Israel)The energetic Casspi makes sense with the Jazz likely to lose at least one man — Carlos Boozer or Paul Millsap — from their forward rotation.
<a href=”http://thehoopdoctors.com/online2/2009/05/the-hoop-doctors-nba-mock-draft-2009-the-full-board/”>The Hoop Doctors</a>
: Damion James / PF / 15.4ppg, 9.2rpg, 1.0 bpg / Jerry Sloan loves athletic players that are gritty and that can move well without the ball. Damion James fits a “Jerry Sloan” prototype to a ‘T’. He is physical, tough, and energetic, and should be the recipient of plenty of dishes from Deron Williams breaking down the defense off the bounce. He will be a good NBA role player. College Team – Texas
: Tyler Hansbrough, F, UNCIt’s like Romeo and Juliet.
<a href=”http://bleacherreport.com/articles/203979-2009-mock-nba-draft#page/21″>The Bleacher Report</a>
: The Jazz are likely to lose Carlos Boozer to free agency this offseason, while resigning (and overpaying) for Paul Milsap. They have nice backcourt depth, and will look to add a power forward or center. Tyler Hansbrough cannot play at center, but he is a nice athlete who can defend the 4 and rebound at the next level. The Jazz select Tyler Hansbrough, PF, UNC. -Eric