Mar 6, 2012; New York, NY, USA; St Jonn's assistant coach Mike Dunlap during the first half of the first round against the Pittsburgh Panthers at the Big East Tournament held at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-US PRESSWIRE
The no. 2 pick belongs to the woeful Charlotte Bobcats. The organization is coming off of a historically bad seven win campaign and to add the frustration the Bobcats weren't the lucky winners in the NBA lottery. In a draft that seems to be all about Anthony Davis and then everyone else, Charlotte is selecting first from the 'everybody else' pool.
Now Kansas' Thomas Robinson falls in the pool and most Jayhawk fans as well as others not caught up in the Davis media circus will point to Robinson as a very legitimate prospect and one that can make a solid impact. The same can be said for Kentucky's Michael Kidd Gilchrist and Bradley Beal who have also worked out for the Bobcats in hopes of landing themselves a no. 2 selection.
Players compete to be the best. They want to be drafted the highest for monetary reasons but also there has to be a little bit of pride in that selection as well. Those two things along with the obvious public relations angle are the exact reason why you won't ever hear a player indicate that they aren't interested in playing for the Bobcats. But if you listen to a collegiate level fan of any of the players under consideration, the Bobcats seem like a worst case scenario. The franchise has been poorly managed, poorly coached and historically unsuccessful.
Enter into the picture new Bobcats coach Mike Dunlap. Dunlap will probably fan the flames of frustration as Jerry Sloan and other 'sexier' names were thrown around by the media in association with this job. Dunlap on the other hand is a relative unknown for many. Dig a little deeper and this could someday prove to be one of the better moves by the Bobcats in recent memory.
Dunlap spent most of his time in the college game and is widely considered to be a very intelligent basketball mind and a strategical tactician. He does have experience as a head coach and experience at the NBA level and in both instances he enjoyed success. His career moves have been described as deliberate, and his style is up tempo with a high level of defensive pressure. This isn't a retread, this isn't the safe hire, but it could be a very good hire for a young Bobcat roster with assorted talent that has been unable to hit their potential. Why? Perhaps they have been in desperate need of coaching.
With Dunlap, the no. 2 spot doesn't look as nearly as bad from that perspective. Yes the franchise still has a huge uphill climb and Bobcat fan frustration will be boiling over from the start of the season. But whoever is ultimately selected will at the very least continue to receive solid coaching from an individual that enjoys the strategy and nuances of the game.
For Robinson this could very well mean an extension of Bill Self and Danny Manning. The Kansas coaching staff has been a tremendous asset for Robinson and numerous other NBA big men. Self has talked on record about Robinson's need to be pushed and challenge and those things helped mold a raw talent into a more refined product. That could mean that Robinson goes to the Bobcats with the no. 2 pick, and while there are no guarantees, the Dunlap hire might ease some concerns regarding the black hole that has existed in Charlotte during recent years.