Denver Nuggets 2010 NBA Draft Preview

As a Nuggets fan the NBA Draft is usually both the most exciting and most frustrating night of the year. This year Denver heads into the 2010 NBA Draft with zero draft picks to make which could make for a pretty slow evening.

Rumors that Denver was shopping Ty Lawson to get a top ten pick have died off and the current scuttlebutt is Lawson is no longer available, at least not to the teams who are currently interested in acquiring him. Denver is still reportedly interested in getting into the draft, but the question is how? If there is a player they are interested in late in the first round, I think you can count on them swapping next season’s first rounder to nab him.

The Nuggets hosted several big men in a workout on Monday, Craig Brackens from Iowa State, Trevor Booker out of Clemson, Derrick Caracter who played at Louisville before transferring to UTEP, Luke Harangody of Notre Dame, Tulsa’s Jerome Jordan, Jarvis Varando from Mississippi State (who Chad Ford compares to Chris Andersen), Brian Zoubek of Duke and Latavious Williams who is a test case for players going from high school to the D-League.

All of those players are slated to be drafted from the late first to the second round. If one or two of those players wowed the front office and George Karl, who was on hand for the workout as he continues to recover from cancer, Denver will certainly make a play for one of them.

There are teams who are potentially interested in trading out of the first round, but there are other teams such as Cleveland, New York and possibly Dallas trying to get into the action in the first round as well.  The bad news for Denver is teams might be more willing to buy a potential lottery ticket by acquiring a pick from a possibly LeBron-less Cavs team or a Knicks team that could strike out in free agency than a pick in the late teens to early twenties from Denver.

We all know the Nuggets need more depth in the frontcourt and they were able to put together an interesting group of players. Brackens and Harangody are intriguing offensive players, Vernando is a defender and shot blocker, Character is a player who entices you with his game, but has a questionable attitude and Booker is a flat out energy and hustle player. Williams may be the most intriguing player, but also is the prospect with the greatest amount of risk.

Even though the Nuggets do not have a pick, Nuggets fans might get a shot of adrenalin once the draft climbs into the mid to late twenties. At the workout on Monday Karl was quoted as saying, “We wouldn’t have guys in here (working out) if we didn’t think we were going to do something.”  Denver must improve the roster and with the team likely rummaging around in the free agency bargain bin a failure to get into the draft will be difficult to stomach.

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