For all the talk of this being a lackluster draft, it didn't lack anything in the lottery portion of the selection process. Anthony Bennett became the first true winner of this draft, as the unheralded No. 1 pick out of UNLV that no one saw coming. If you're not a college hoop-head, then you weren't supposed to know too much about Bennett until he hit the scene, and he did that as the first overall pick.
Let's break this down, though. Who were the winners and losers?
From a strictly basketball perspective, you have to like what the Timberwolves did, turning their Trey Burke pick into Shabazz Muhammad to team him up with fellow UCLA man Kevin Love. Bazz is actually one of the very few, if not the only, polarizing figure in this draft class, and the T'Wolves managed to pick him up rather quietly with everything going on early in the round.
Love is under contract in Minnesota for the next three seasons. If Muhammad can come in and contribute right away, we could be looking at a really nice young nucleus.
The T'Wolves also picked up a shot-blocker in Louisville's Gorgui Dieng, so that now the squad has a chance to be taken seriously defensively. They already ranked No. 13 in defensive rating last season.
Victor Oladipo and Otto Porter Jr. going in the top 3 was also a huge moment for prospects who don't come out of high school with a ton of hype. Oladipo volunteered to come off the bench his junior year because of his high school squad in Maryland. Porter was a legend in high school, but he's from the small town Scott County Central High School in Missouri.
Then you look at Cody Zeller and Alex Len rounding out the top 5. That whole crew of draft picks came out winners at Barclays.
Speaking of Barclays, the arena had its own winner's moment when it became apparent that Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce and Jason Terry would be joining the team. Aside from all of the salary cap implications, this is going to be the story in the East outside of Miami. The Knicks are almost boring now in comparison.
Do the Charlotte Bobcats have a plan? Michael Jordan is the laughing stock of laughing stocks within the NBA management circle, and the Bobcats take Cody Zeller with the No. 4 pick instead of Nerlens Noel or Ben McLemore. The Bobcats could have made a splash with that pick for whatever it was worth. Not that Zeller is a bad pick, but how exactly does he fit into what the Bobcats are doing?
We don't know the answer to that because no one actually knows what the Bobcats are doing. Stay tuned on that.
Bobcats fans didn't lose on draft night in the way Sixers fans did. Philly lost its franchise point guard Jrue Holiday in exchange for two projects in Noel and Michael Carter-Williams. Noel was expected to be the No. 1 overall pick, but in this draft, that wasn't worth a young All-Star already established in the league.