NBA Draft Thoughts (6/21/11)

By Paul Bessire

Tuesday, June 21 at 9:33 PM ET
With the first pick in the 2011 NBA Draft, the Cleveland Cavaliers select... If they could take any non-NBA player, they would probably take Andre Drummond (or at least Anthony Davis), but that's not possible now. If they listen to the pundits, they will probably take Kyrie Irving, but I'm not sure why. If you have read through the blog over the last year, you probably remember my disdain for mock drafts. They're self-serving and their popularity is counter-productive to the game (and not just because it may all be for naught due to labor and economic issues). To me, it does not matter which player sources suggest will go to which team - that can become a gigantic game of telephone with agents and team representatives often offering misinformation intentionally.

What matters to me is the only thing that should matter to personnel and fans - who should each team take and why. After Thursday's draft, I will once again offer my rankings on the best impact draft choices of this season's draft. To do that, I will employ analysis that reviews college stats, age, height, weight, performance of similar players in that system and other measureables to project impact from each soon-to-be (hopefully) rookie. And, if you will indulge me devoting an entire blog entry to a sport and an event that I have closely followed since my then-favorite college player, Billy Owens, was drafted third overall by the Sacramento Kings in the 1991 draft (I also inexplicably fell in love with Jeff Trepagnier before the 2001 draft... I blame that on injuries, though, fortunately, my prognosticating abilities have grown immensely since then). Utilizing the same type of analysis that I will employ to come up with statistical inputs for players after the draft - as well as the consideration of some other factors like "ability to sell tickets and merchandise in an otherwise weak market" - here is my take on which players should be drafted by which teams. (Note: Rather than take over the duties of every GM and start trading with myself, I took an objective look at each choice and each roster without the ability to make trades.)

As usual, if you have any of your own comments about this article or suggestions about how to improve the site, please do not hesitate to contact us at any time. We respond to every support contact as quickly as we can (usually within a few hours) and are very amenable to suggestions. I firmly believe that open communication with our customers and user feedback is the best way for us to grow and provide the types of products that will maximize the experience for all. Thank you in advance for your suggestions, comments and questions.

1 . Cleveland Cavaliers Derrick Williams, F, Arizona ( 6'9", 249 lbs. Age: 20 )
Weakness Addressed: Basketball; Elite Player
Note: The immediate response to this will likely more about who it is not than who it is. Kyrie Irving seems to be the consensus top player in the draft and the player that the Cleveland Cavaliers are very likely to take. To me, it's a no-brainer for Cleveland. Derrick Williams proved over an extended period of time that he can be the most dominant player on the floor. At 6'9, 249 pounds and still just 20 years old, he has an NBA body, yet is young enough to grow. Irving is taking advantage of a point guard position that has become vastly overrated due to the recent performances of standout players like Derrick Rose, Chris Paul and Deron Williams. And while Rose and the Bulls did have the best record in the NBA this season, teams led by elite point guards are not winning championships or even playing in the NBA Finals (seriously, Chauncey Billups and Tony Parker are the closest things to elite point guards that have won an NBA Finals since Isiah Thomas and the Detroit Pistons in 1990). Sure, Irving is 6'4", just 19 and has great shooting numbers in limited play. But, he also has an injury history, has played just 11 games that count since high school, ranked as one of just 17 players of more than 135 at the NBA Draft Combine with a body fat percentage in the double-digits and plays a position where a great player is not needed to win in the NBA. He sounds a lot more like the second-coming of his predecessor if he lands in Cleveland - Baron Davis - than Rose, Paul, Williams or even John Wall or Tyreke Evans. There are several capable scoring point guard-type players in this draft that would play well paired with an athlete like Williams. It doesn't work the other way around. Cleveland should go with Williams first and then take a remaining scoring point guard with the fourth pick. The Cavaliers are grossly undervaluing Williams and overvaluing Irving if they go another route.

2 . Minnesota Timberwolves Jimmer Fredette, G, Brigham Young ( 6'3", 196 lbs. Age: 22 )
Weakness Addressed: Scoring
Note: Is Jimmer Fredette the second-best player in the 2011 NBA Draft? I'm not sure. Derrick Williams is the clear top choice according to my analysis. After that, in the NBA where every rostered player is expected to contribute right away, team need takes over. The fun with this pick is that there are not many other places where the Jimmer would fit better. No, this is not David Kahn taking another point guard. He's not a point guard even in the mold of Derrick Rose or Kyrie Irving. The only reason people are talking about him as a point guard is because he is 6'2.5". In reality, he's a score first offensive weapon with almost unlimited range and stamina. That's where the Timberwolves make so much sense. Minnesota is bringing over Ricky Rubio from Spain to start next season. Rubio is a 6'5" pass-first point guard with excellent rebounding abilities. He is the anti-Jimmer in that he does not shoot well. Neither is an elite defender, yet both possess the athleticism to be average at defending the one and Rubio has the length to guard most twos. Minnesota's perimeter offense was terrible last season. Rubio and Jimmer would make it significantly better. And if Jimmer thought he was open all the time at BYU, just think of the looks he'll get with Rubio setting him up on the break or in the half-court and Kevin Love hitting him in stride on the outlet. If Williams is gone, Minnesota would do everything it could to move this pick to a team looking for a point guard or big European. Even in that scenario, I hope they would still see the wisdom in moving back just a few spots to take Jimmer Fredette.

3 . Utah Jazz Kyrie Irving, G, Duke ( 6'4", 191 lbs. Age: 19 )
Weakness Addressed: Perimeter Scoring
Note: Okay, he's not that bad. Irving is still a strong talent, but by no means a slam dunk. I'm not as down on Devin Harris as most, yet since Gordon Hayward is Utah's only shooting guard, Irving would help to supply necessary perimeter scoring.

4 . Cleveland Cavaliers Kemba Walker, G, Connecticut ( 6'1", 184 lbs. Age: 21 )
Weakness Addressed: Winning
Note: Derrick Williams and Kemba walker is a much, much better tandem than Kyrie Irving and insert tall Euro here. Walker can run the team to facilitate Williams' game and carry it out of the post-LeBron doldrums.

5 . Toronto Raptors Jonas Valanciunas, C, Lithuania ( 7'0", 245 lbs. Age: 19 )
Weakness Addressed: Size and Rebounding
Note: I am not as well-versed in Valanciunas' game as am with the American players, but it seems as though he would be a great interior compliment to Andrea Bargnani. Rather than play from the inside-out, Valanciunas is a European seven-footer who prefers to play on the inside, with rebounding and defense as his greatest strengths.

6 . Washington Wizards Enes Kanter, F, Turkey ( 6'11", 260 lbs. Age: 19 )
Weakness Addressed: Strength and Toughness
Note: With John Wall, Jordan Crawford, Nick Young, Andray Blatche and JaVale McGee, Washington has one of the most athletic teams in the league. However, they completely lack the type of player who can do can play strong inside offensively and defensively. At 6'11", 260 pounds, Enes Kanter profiles to be the exact kind of player that the Wizards could use to fulfill those roles.

7 . Sacramento Kings Klay Thompson, G, Washington State ( 6'7", 206 lbs. Age: 21 )
Weakness Addressed: Scoring from the wing
Note: Sacramento has Tyreke Evans (assuming he can stay healthy), DeMarcus Cousins (assuming he can stay healthy in the head) and... Marcus Thornton, Beno Udrih and Jason Thompson can be adequate bench/role players for a decent team, but they cannot be counted on to factor heavily in wins. Klay Thompson is a decent shooting wing player with good length and smarts, not to mention the ability to convert from the line, which is critical for a team that converted just 73.4% of free-throws.

8 . Detroit Pistons Brandon Knight, G, Kentucky ( 6'3", 177 lbs. Age: 19 )
Weakness Addressed: Identity
Note: If I were starting a team from scratch with just this year's players included, I may take Knight with the second pick (after Derrick Williams). Knight can shoot adequately, defend well, run with just about anyone, finish, pass and manage a team intelligently. Though he would be in the mix at just about every position above, he didn't solve any weakness of the above teams (especially at a premium position) well enough to warrant the pick. In Detroit though, Knight would almost be starting from scratch. Richard Hamilton and Tayshaun Prince will not be around forever. And Ben Gordon and Charlie Villanueva are solid role players (at best). Knight could team with Greg Monroe to create a smart, athletic squad for the future.

9 . Charlotte Bobcats Donatas Motiejunas, F/C, Lithuania ( 7'0", 220 lbs. Age: 19 )
Weakness Addressed: Potential
Note: Charlotte needs to completely revamp its team and find some stars - or at least some strong players - around which to build. It would definitely not be my preferred strategy, but the Bobcats are stuck in a position in the draft and with their team, where they need to reach for skilled, high ceiling players. By all accounts, Motiejunas fits that bill.

10 . Milwaukee Bucks Marshon Brooks, G/F, Providence ( 6'5", 195 lbs. Age: 22 )
Weakness Addressed: Perimeter Scoring
Note: While part of the Bucks' scoring issues are amplified by the slowest pace in the NBA and injuries clearly played a big role, it's hard to make the case that Milwaukee did not have the worst offense in the league last year. Michael Redd has only played 61 games in the last three seasons and will be 32 before the season starts. His career as an effective perimeter scorer is likely over (it actually probably ended in 2008). Is Marshon Brooks the next Michael Redd? Possibly. Redd, a 6'6" guard, played in 96 games for Ohio State (1997-00), increasing his productivity and efficiency each season, ultimately putting up a line of 21.9 ppg, 6.5 rpg, 3.0 apg, 2.0 spg and 43.8% fg in 37.9 mpg in his last year. Brooks is 6'5", played in 114 games and drastically improved his productivity and efficiency over a four- year career at Providence that culminated in a season with 24.6 ppg, 7.0 rpg, 2.5 apg, 1.5 spg and 48.3% fg in 36.5 mpg. He did everything for the Friars in 2010-11, but that's kind of the point.

11 . Golden State Warriors Jan Vesely, F, Czech Republic ( 6'11", 240 lbs. Age: 21 )
Weakness Addressed: Interior Presence
Note: Guess which team needs an interior defender - still? Don Nelson may not have had much use for guys that can defend inside, but winning basketball teams typically do and the Golden State Warriors have been looking for that guy in the for several years. The team was at its best defensively last year when top pick, Ekpe Udoh, was on the court. Adding a guy like Vesely should help them maintain that positive momentum.

12 . Utah Jazz Jordan Hamilton, G/F, Texas ( 6'9", 229 lbs. Age: 20 )
Weakness Addressed: Perimeter Athleticism
Note: Jordan Hamilton, a 6'9" wing player with good range, would be a tremendous upgrade over either Gordon Hayward or C.J. Miles on the Jazz. Hamilton is an underrated defender and athlete who may never be the guy for his team, yet can help it in many ways.

13 . Phoenix Suns Kawhi Leonard, F, San Diego State ( 6'7", 228 lbs. Age: 19 )
Weakness Addressed: Tenacity
Note: I can't say that I'm in love with a 6'7" NBA forward who's greatest skill is rebounding, yet can't bench press 185 pounds more than three times, but that doesn't mean that he can't pull it off (he did in college). Kawhi Leonard also struggles with shooting. Despite a lack of strength or shooting ability, Leonard is a great athlete with impressive length and the willingness to do whatever it takes to win. In other words, he is the exact opposite of Channing Frye, which should make them strong compliments to each other's games.

14 . Houston Rockets Tristan Thompson, F, Texas ( 6'9", 228 lbs. Age: 20 )
Weakness Addressed: Potential
Note: The Rockets will once again feature a roster full of undersized, solid wings and big men who sustained good, but not great college careers. That cannot be surprising given the team's "Moneyball"-esque approach to scouting. And it's a smart strategy. At this point though, due to the plight of former cornerstones Yao Ming and Tracy McGrady, Houston needs to find a star to build around. Tristan Thompson has as much all-around ability as any player left. And it's not like he's never proven anything. The forward played well for Texas as a freshman, putting up 13.1 points on 54.6% shooting, while anchoring one of the best defenses in the country. Of course he does have one very un-Moneyball trait that my analysis also does not like - he can't shoot free throws.

15 . Indiana Pacers Bismack Biyombo, F/C, Congo ( 6'9", 243 lbs. Age: 18 )
Weakness Addressed: Interior Athleticism
Note: No team may be in better need of Serge Ibaka 2.0's services than the Indiana Pacers, who possess a skilled, yet slow and rigid frontline. (Note: I don't know for sure if he is Serge Ibaka 2.0, but I have very little else to base my understanding of Biyombo's potential.)

16 . Philadelphia Sixers Marcus Morris, F, Kansas ( 6'9", 230 lbs. Age: 21 )
Weakness Addressed: Something Different
Note: Marcus Morris may be the most difficult player in this draft for me to peg. He's 6'9" and looks the part, but he's not particularly strong or long and he does not appear to be nearly as good of a shooter as people want to make him out to be. However, Marcus Morris' teams win and he always seems to be important to that. Marcus has the much greater offensive ceiling of the Morris twins and brings enough smarts and energy to aid a team without a glaring weakness.

17 . New York Knicks Alec Burks, G, Colorado ( 6'6", 193 lbs. Age: 19 )
Weakness Addressed: Perimeter Offense
Note: Alec Burks shot 53.8% from the field and 35.2% from three en route to scoring 17.1 points a game as a freshman for Colorado. As a sophomore, Burks shot just 46.9% from the field and 29.2% from three while scoring 20.5 points per game. That's a disturbing trend, yet likely one founded in extra attention from defenses. If Burks goes to a team late in the draft that is looking for perimeter scoring and a guy that can get his own shot when necessary, but is not reliant on him to take over games, he should be okay. The New York Knicks seem like a great fit for that type of player.

18 . Washington Wizards Tyler Honeycutt, F, UCLA ( 6'8", 186 lbs. Age: 20 )
Weakness Addressed: Defense and Passing
Note: Like we discussed with Enes Kanter, Tyler Honeycutt does many of the things well that the athletic frontcourt of the Wizards currently struggles with, namely defend on the perimeter and pass the ball. Because they play at such a slow, deliberate pace at UCLA, Ben Howland's players are often much more capable offensively than their collegiate numbers would suggest - and they are typically very good defensively. P.S. Tyler, please eat a sandwich (or 50). I'm four inches shorter than you and I look skinny when I weigh 186.

19 . Minnesota Timberwolves Keith Benson, C, Oakland ( 6'11", 221 lbs. Age: 22 )
Weakness Addressed: Interior Athleticism and Scoring
Note: If Keith Benson were European with the same skill-set, most pundits would have him as a first round lock. As it is, the 22-year-old, four-year star at Oakland is an afterthought to most. Don't let him be to you. Benson's body and athleticism are reminiscent of Tyson Chandler's when he entered the draft (albeit at a much younger age). Benson can shoot, defend inside, run the floor and has valuable experience - a great asset to a team that now has Ricky Rubio, Jimmer Fredette and Kevin Love. A vastly improved team that already liked to run shouldn't have problems selling tickets now.

20 . Charlotte Bobcats Tobias Harris, F, Tennessee ( 6'8", 223 lbs. Age: 18 )
Weakness Addressed: Potential
Note: Far more so to my analysis that most others, Tobias Harris is a boom-or- bust player. As we outlined above, that may be the type of player that the Bobcats need to target. The fact that he has Jared Dudley's skillset (which Michael Jordan is apparently infatuated with) just adds to the intrigue as he heads to Charlotte.

21 . Portland Trail Blazers Nolan Smith, G, Duke ( 6'2", 185 lbs. Age: 22 )
Weakness Addressed: Guard Depth
Note: Especially if Greg Oden can ever come back healthy (and Brandon Roy can get and stay healthy), Portland is without obvious weakness. The Trail Blazers play a smart, methodical brand of basketball led by Andre Miller, a point guard and coach on the floor. While most have Nolan Smith pegged as more of a shooting guard, his ability leading Duke - notably in 2009-10 - suggests that he can be a similar, effective player like Miller. I understand the differences in the NBA game, but it's hard to fathom that Kyrie Irving could go first overall in the NBA Draft and that Nolan Smith may not be drafted.

22 . Denver Nuggets Chris Singleton, F, Florida State ( 6'9", 230 lbs. Age: 21 )
Weakness Addressed: Defense
Note: Denver is not going to find a high-volume, efficient scorer this late in the draft and I think that's a good thing. The recipe of depth and unselfishness worked for the Nuggets after Carmelo Anthony was moved and it shouldn't change (especially as Danilo Gallinari evolves into a better scoring threat). The key to this team will be improving defense without hurting athleticism. Chris Singleton is the perfect fit.

23 . Houston Rockets Nikola Vucevic, F/C, USC ( 7'0", 260 lbs. Age: 20 )
Weakness Addressed: Size
Note: The Rockets did their best to get a potential star with Tristan Thompson. In Vucevic, they look for a capable seven-footer with rare size and interior skill.

24 . Oklahoma City Thunder JaJuan Johnson, F/C, Purdue ( 6'10", 215 lbs. Age: 22 )
Weakness Addressed: Interior Offense
Note: JaJuan Johnson may prefer to shoot the ball from outside - which may help to stretch the floor as well - but his true potential is as an interior offensive weapon with adequate post moves and the ability to clean up alley-oops and missed shots. The Thunder have Serge Ibaka and Kendrick Perkins who can defend and rebound. They could use a player like Johnson as an inside (and potentially outside) threat.

25 . Boston Celtics Jeremy Tyler, F/C ( 6'11", 263 lbs. Age: 19 )
Weakness Addressed: Size and Youth Inside
Note: Whether he technically plays center or not, Jeremy Tyler, all 6'11", 263 pounds of the 19 year old, would seem to give the Celtics the type of athlete they were hoping to get in Shaquille or Jermaine O'Neal, without mortgaging the future. With Allen, Pierce and Garnett likely around for at least one more season, Boston can take a risk on a player like Tyler without hurting 2011-12.

26 . Dallas Mavericks Kenneth Faried, F, Morehead State ( 6'8", 225 lbs. Age: 21 )
Weakness Addressed: Rebounding and Athleticism
Note: The Mavericks already have unprecedented depth and will likely keep that around in some semblance next season, so they are not desperate to get better in the draft. That makes Dallas a perfect landing spot for one of the best rebounding prospects in the draft, Kenneth Faried. The numbers, size and resume read a lot like Paul Millsap (with additional athleticism). If Dallas can get Millsap-like production this late in the draft, they can help to ensure that they'll be relevant as least as long as Dirk Nowitzki is comfortable playing.

27 . New Jersey Nets Kyle Singler, F, Duke ( 6'9", 228 lbs. Age: 23 )
Weakness Addressed: Winning
Note: The New Jersey Nets need a little bit of everything right now - and that's what Kyle Singler can give them. He does not profile as a star, yet he can shoot, pass and do the little things (like setting picks and taking charges) to leverage his history of winning to aid the team.

28 . Chicago Bulls Andrew Goudelock, G, Charleston ( 6'2", 200 lbs. Age: 22 )
Weakness Addressed: Outside Shooting
Note: The best shooter in the draft. Wherever he is right now as you read this, Andrew Goudelock is open and within his range. That is exactly what the Bulls need right now.


29 . San Antonio Spurs Markieff Morris, F, Kansas ( 6'9", 241 lbs. Age: 21 )
Weakness Addressed: Versatility
Note: A smart, unselfish, veteran collegiate player who can help in many ways and defend multiple positions... sounds like the San Antonio Spurs.

30 . Chicago Bulls Justin Harper, F, Richmond ( 6'9", 228 lbs. Age: 21 )
Weakness Addressed: Mid-range Shooting
Note: Like Andrew Goudelock, Harper is the best shooter at his position in the draft, a stretch-four type of player who provides an strong compliment to Derrick Rose's penetrating abilities and the tough interior play of Joakim Noah (and Carlos Boozer if he can ever figure it out again).

31 . Miami Heat Norris Cole, G, Cleveland State ( 6'2", 174 lbs. Age: 22 )
Weakness Addressed: Perimeter Depth/Versatility

32 . Cleveland Cavaliers Charles Jenkins, G, Hofstra ( 6'3", 220 lbs. Age: 22 )
Weakness Addressed: Perimeter Depth/Versatility

33 . Detroit Pistons Jon Leuer, F, Wisconsin ( 6'10", 230 lbs. Age: 22 )
Weakness Addressed: Size/Smarts

34 . Washington Wizards Davis Bertans, F, Latvia ( 6'10", 210 lbs. Age: 18 )
Weakness Addressed: Future Potential

35 . Sacramento Kings Darius Morris, G, Michigan ( 6'4", 180 lbs. Age: 20 )
Weakness Addressed: Unselfish Guard Play

36 . New Jersey Nets Iman Shumpert, GF, Georgia Tech ( 6'5", 209 lbs. Age: 20 )
Weakness Addressed: Wing Scoring

37 . Los Angeles Clippers Chandler Parsons, F, Florida ( 6'9", 215 lbs. Age: 22 )
Weakness Addressed: Smarts/Wing Depth

38 . Houston Rockets Reggie Jackson, G, Boston College ( 6'3", 200 lbs. Age: 21 )
Weakness Addressed: Perimeter Length/Scoring

39 . Charlotte Bobcats Josh Selby, G, Kansas ( 6'2", 188 lbs. Age: 20 )
Weakness Addressed: Potential/High Ceiling

40 . Milwaukee Bucks Jimmy Butler, G/F, Marquette ( 6'6", 215 lbs. Age: 21 )
Weakness Addressed: Toughness On Wing/Familiar Face

41 . Los Angeles Lakers Travis Leslie, G, Georgia ( 6'4", 208 lbs. Age: 21 )
Weakness Addressed: Youth/Athleticism

42 . Utah Jazz Shelvin Mack, G, Butler ( 6'3", 214 lbs. Age: 21 )
Weakness Addressed: Perimeter Defense/Winning

43 . Chicago Bulls E'Twaun Moore, G, Purdue ( 6'4", 184 lbs. Age: 22 )
Weakness Addressed: Guard Depth

44 . Los Angeles Clippers DeAndre Liggins, G, Kentucky ( 6'6", 202 lbs. Age: 23 )
Weakness Addressed: Perimeter Defense

45 . Indiana Pacers Matt Howard, F, Butler ( 6'8", 230 lbs. Age: 22 )
Weakness Addressed: Hustle/Familiar Face

46 . New Orleans Hornets Jereme Richmond, F, Illinois ( 6'8", 195 lbs. Age: 19 )
Weakness Addressed: Potential/High Ceiling

47 . Los Angeles Lakers Malcolm Lee, G, UCLA ( 6'5", 180 lbs. Age: 21 )
Weakness Addressed: Perimeter Size/Depth/Defense/Familiar Face

48 . Atlanta Hawks Jordan Williams, PF, Maryland ( 6'10", 260 lbs. Age: 20 )
Weakness Addressed: Size/Toughness

49 . Philadelphia Sixers Jon Diebler, G, Ohio State ( 6'6", 205 lbs. Age: 22 )
Weakness Addressed: Perimeter Shooting

50 . Memphis Grizzlies Greg Smith, C, Fresno State ( 6'10", 250 lbs. Age: 20 )
Weakness Addressed: Interior Depth

51 . Portland Trail Blazers Trey Thompkins, F, Georgia ( 6'10", 247 lbs. Age: 21 )
Weakness Addressed: Interior Depth/Rebounding

52 . Denver Nuggets David Lighty, F, Ohio State ( 6'5", 220 lbs. Age: 23 )
Weakness Addressed: Versatility/Smarts

53 . Orlando Magic Rick Jackson, F, Syracuse ( 6'9", 240 lbs. Age: 22 )
Weakness Addressed: Interior Depth

54 . Cleveland Cavaliers Bojan Bogdanovic, F, Bosnia and Herzegovina ( 6'8", 195 lbs. Age: 22 )
Weakness Addressed: Future Potential

55 . Boston Celtics Nikola Mirotic, F, Montenegro ( 6'10", 220 lbs. Age: 20 )
Weakness Addressed: Future Potential

56 . Los Angeles Lakers Jamie Skeen, F, VCU ( 6'8", 250 lbs. Age: 23 )
Weakness Addressed: Outside Shooting

57 . Dallas Mavericks Malcolm Thomas, F, San Diego State ( 6'9", 215 lbs. Age: 22 )
Weakness Addressed: Interior Depth/Defense

58 . Los Angeles Lakers LaceDarius Dunn, G, Baylor ( 6'4", 205 lbs. Age: 23 )
Weakness Addressed: Wing Scoring Potential

59 . San Antonio Spurs Justin Holiday, F, Washington ( 6'6", 180 lbs. Age: 22 )
Weakness Addressed: Versatility/Defense

60 . Sacramento Kings Gary McGhee, C, Pittsburgh ( 6'10", 250 lbs. Age: 22 )
Weakness Addressed: Toughness/Intimidation

MLB Performance:
There is not much new to report on the baseball front. In this case, that's a very good thing. June has continued to be strong, particularly with the plays that we highlight (normal+ ML, O/U and RL, upset picks and, to a lesser degree of highlighting and performance, "half-bet" plays where the recommended play value is greater than half of the "normal play"). In fact, since the last blog on June 13 and including last night's (June 20) plays, normal+ and upset watch picks are 6-0, +$203 for a $50 player based on our recommendations, and "half-bet" plays are 35-22, +$288. So, whether you prefer about one play a day or 6-8, there should be a beneficial strategy available.

Obviously, we cannot guarantee results like these forever (we'll probably lose a normal+ MLB play at some point - maybe even in June; maybe even tonight), but we believe our strong performance for this entire month, especially since the run-line engine modifications last week is a great sign that our hard work and research has paid off as we attempt to maximize the value of this technology.

A couple quick items to clarify:

  • With the aforementioned run-line tweak put in place last week and Interleague play seeming positive thus far (though with fewer strong opinions in those categories as expected), no engine tweaks are planned. That does not mean that we will not continue to monitor the product and research/make/announce tweaks if necessary, but this is as close to auto-pilot (for everyone - the customer included) as I think we can get for a product. That's a good thing.
  • Just a reminder that the play value recommendations that utilize our math and confidence in attempt to gain "optimal" bankroll management are providing "to risk" recommendations. This, understandably, can get difficult/confusing during baseball season with the variations in money lines. In its simplest terms, if we are recommending playing $50 on a -200 wager, we suggest that you risk $50 to make $25. Fortunately, with recent success, confusion there may have worked in one's favor. That won't always be the case. Our approach is designed to limit risk/exposure through inevitable losses in an effort to grow bankroll through the wins.


As usual, if you have any of your own comments about this article or suggestions about how to improve the site, please do not hesitate to contact us at any time. We respond to every support contact as quickly as we can (usually within a few hours) and are very amenable to suggestions. I firmly believe that open communication with our customers and user feedback is the best way for us to grow and provide the types of products that will maximize the experience for all. Thank you in advance for your suggestions, comments and questions.