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A Future Star Awaits at #8

Will the Bucks draft him?

At the bottom of our Wednesday Notes, Frank referenced an article that evaluated how past lottery picks have turned out. I'll quote Frank below, because his astute point is the basis of this post.

So while the list of players picked at number eight is rather underwhelming, the more important fact is that plenty of great players have been available at that spot (you just have to be smart enough to pick them).

Truer words were never spoken.

The Bucks ought not to fret about falling all the way down to the #8 spot in the lottery. That is, if new GM John Hammond is worth all the excitement and 4th St. parades that so gloriously filled Milwaukee's spring air with green and red confetti and balloons.

The reason is quite simple: if the future follows the past, (this is usually how it works) then there will be a future NBA star who didn't hear his name among the first seven chosen. Probably a couple stars. Maybe not franchise talents (although this is very possible), but at the least, a really solid pro. That player, waiting, as nervous sweat falls onto his spiffy suit, might just be the newest NBA star -- and Milwaukee Buck.

There are plentiful possibilities, so go ahead and voice your choice.

Possibilities -- just like there were in 1989 when the Mavericks chose Randy White in the same spot the Bucks are locked into, ahead of Tim Hardaway, Mookie Blaylock, Shawn Kemp, B.J. Armstrong, Nick Anderson, and Vlade Divac, among others. (Sidenote: Who's taking a trip down 1990's NBA memory lane, starring T of Run TMC, with me?)

Indeed, history explicitly shows us the type of players available at #8. The following is a sampling of some of the top players picked #8 or later in the draft in the past fifteen years, courtesy of The point here is the caliber of the top two or three players available should be quite high. Even if this is a below-average draft in terms of depth, there will be attractive options.

1993: Vin Baker (8), Sam Cassell (24), Nick Van Exel (37)

1994: Brian Grant (8), Eddie Jones (10), Jalen Rose (13)

1995: Kurt Thomas (10), Michael Finley (21), Donyell Marshall (39)

1996: Kobe Bryant (13), Peja Stojakovic (14), Steve Nash (15)

1997: Tracy McGrady (9), Derek Anderson (13), Stephen Jackson (43)

1998: Dirk Nowitzki (9), Paul Pierce (10), Al Harrington (25)

1999: Andre Miller (8), Shawn Marion (9), Jason Terry (10)

2000: Hedo Turkoglu (16), Morris Peterson (21), Michael Redd (43)

2001: Joe Johnson (10), Richard Jefferson (13), Tony Parker (28)

2002: Amare Stoudemire (9), Caron Butler (10), Tayshaun Prince (23)

2003: T.J. Ford (8), David West (18), Josh Howard (29)

2004: Andre Iguodala (9), Al Jefferson (15), Josh Smith (17)

2005: Andrew Bynum (10), David Lee (30), Monta Ellis (40)

2006: Rudy Gay (8), Ronnie Brewer (14), Rajon Rondo (21)

2007: Joakim Noah (9), Thaddeus Young (12), Carl Landry (31)