Former Syracuse forward Jerami Grant was taken with the 39th pick in the 2014 NBA Draft by the Philadephia. We sat down with NBA TV’s Jared Greenberg and NBA Scout Ryan Blake to get each of their takes on his NBA future.
About our panel:
- Jared Greenberg is a co-host of NBA.com Fantasy Insider with 10-year NBA veteran Dennis Scott, and also serves as a host for NBA TV’s GameTime on Thursdays during the regular season. Follow @NBATVJared
- With over 30 years of scouting experience, Ryan Blake is a much sought after speaker and scout. Blake is one of the foremost advisors that many turn to, having annual interviews with major publications, internet draft websites as well as being a regular guest on NBA-TV, Co-hosting the Draft Preview and a longstanding commentator on the D-League Draft. Follow @HoopsHighway
The Juice Online: To me, Jerami Grant being taken by Philadelphia in the second round is the best case scenario for him because it seems like he’ll have a good shot at making that roster even though he’s got a non-guaranteed contract.
Jared Greenberg, NBA TV: That’s an interesting point. You often times hear it argued that guys would rather be an undrafted free agent rather than a second round pick because in both instances your money isn’t guaranteed, but being an undrafted free agent, you get to select where you want to go among the teams your agent says are interested in you. But I like your take on it, Wes. With Philadelphia, they’re a young team, but unfortunately, management is telling the fans that they don’t care anything about the year in front of them. It’s going to be a really big struggle for Philly. They lost three straight 40 point games last year. For Grant, it’s an opportunity for him to get on the court. Every team watches every game in the NBA, hopefully they watch the highlights with us on NBATV, and see that Grant’s proven himself, and if his future isn’t in Philadelphia, this is a great year for him to prove himself for the other 29 teams.
Ryan Blake, NBA Scout: If you’re a player in the second round, you want to go to a team that has some spots available. Sometimes you might get drafted and only be used if there are no roster spots, or if the percentages are really low, you’re going to be traded or become a free agent. Grant has versatility at two spots although he’s ultra thin, he can find that spot if he develops perimeter skills.
TJO: It actually seems like Grant not only has a good shot at making the team, but also a chance at becoming a regular contributor.
RB: It really comes down to defense when it comes to Jerami. He has to show more versatility. He has to show that he can defend both the three and the four. He’s got to show the quickness to defend on the perimeter. He’s also got to show that he can rebound down low with some of the stronger guys in the league. If he can show that, he will earn minutes. He’ll have an opportunity to show that during the summer.
JG: They’ve got a whole lot of young talent. And I think the point you’re trying to get at is this year, they take with their first pick a guy who many think will be the best player in the 2014 draft, Joel Embiid. But he’s not available for the first month or two, and he’s got a history with a back injury. I don’t want to jinx that, but we know what tag comes along with that, especially with big men. And then their 10th pick which was traded to their 12th pick, Dario Saric, is a guy that many people believe he could be unbelievable player in this draft. But the same people caution me that Saric plays two years with Philadelphia, they’ll be lucky. He’s got a contract in Turkey. and it appears that he’s content and his family is content with playing in Europe and improving his game. ANd how that effects Grant is tremendous because you’re taking two guys who are lottery picks, two guys who any team in the NBA would find room for, if healthy and available, yet one’s not healthy, and the other’s not available. So now guys will find a way to make a name for themselves. Wes, I’m sure you’re into fantasy basketball, and if you are, you target guys that are on a team like the Sixers because they’re going to eat up numbers. They’re going to put up numbers that don’t necessarily reflect winning because they’re going to get more opportunity.