Pick 2: There remains some genuine drama to be found as early as pick two. Charlotte owns this pick, but they don't want it, or at least, they want to trade down to bag extra talent and still get the player they covet. Cleveland is the trade partner with whom talks go down to the wire, yet not even the internet (who knows everything about such matters) reports a deal getting done in time. Charlotte, then, holds onto her own pick.
Charlotte and Bob Katz famously presided over the worst season in NBA history, and famously still didn't land the first overall pick in the total-fix-that-totally-wasn't-a-fix. Nevertheless, it's always fun to kick a man while he's down, and Rece Davis seizes the opportunity to point out that Charlotte's .106 winning percentage looks more like a breathlyser test result. Davis is already forty times better at this gig than Stu Scott, who probably would have made a zip code joke.
During a montage of Bobcats personnel looking sad - in reality, a blatantly blatant manoeuvre to get on TV a picture of Micheal Jordan's new model fiance - new Bobcats head coach Mike Dunlap is also pictured. All I take away from the experience is that, with his live-in star and significant side parting, Dunlap faintly reminded one of Christoph Waltz's character in Inglourious Basterds. If that doesn't make you play hard, nothing will.
The Bobcats then shatter any and all previously unbroken mock drafts, picking another Kentuckian, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist. The pick is met with some surprise, not least of which is felt by Michael himself, who is barely able to go through the process. He is on the cusp of tears during his time on the podium with Stern, and remains so during his interview with Mark Jones, where he is barely able to get a word out. Those that he does manage are mostly "wow," and for no apparent reason, two of the others were "Anthony Davis." MKG wears his emotions on his face, and in this instance, there's rather a lot of them - combined with a stuttering problem he has long battled, MKG's time with Jones is endearingly, heartwarmingly awkward. It is the polar opposite of the Anthony Davis interview, and yet this too is to his utmost credit. After all, he's only saying what we all were thinking.
Bilas recovers quickly from the surprise of the pick and launches into an appraisal of MKG's game, one that is highly complimentary. For the most part, Bilas focuses his analyses on his body type and "relentlessness," going out of his way to point out the innate nature of someone's motor. Anyone can be motivated by money, fame or what have you, but only a few have that other-level energy level that separates them. Just like apathy, you either have it or you don't.
Unfortunately, by going to such extremes to point this out, Bilas implicitly makes another pertinent point. Kidd-Gilchrist is a good player and will continue to be so, but his physical tools and motor are listed ahead of his skillset for a reason. His upside may be equal to that of Gerald Wallace more than that of Scottie Pippen. This is fine, because Gerald Wallace has long been a very good player. Charlotte, of all teams, knows that. But with the second pick in the draft, you need to be sure you're landing the likely second best player. Will a man with Gerald Wallace's upside be that? We'll know in time, but it trusts an awful lot to luck for it to be the case. Nevertheless, a team staggeringly short of talent just got some, and Kidd-Gilchrist becomes by default the best player Charlotte have ever drafted. A Kemba Walker/Ben Gordon/MKG/Bismack Biyombo lineup is starting to take shape. It's not much, but it's a start.