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Tuesday (What should we expect out of Derrick Williams?) edition: Wha' Happened?

  • Blog Post by: Michael Rand
  • February 7, 2012 - 9:54 AM

Chip Scoggins had a nice column today about Derrick Williams and the "caged lion" tweet. The main short-term point with Williams is simple: If he can't play small forward -- and right now, coaches feel he can't -- then he's going to be stuck for playing time behind Kevin Love and other big men.

However, with Love serving a two-game suspension, this is -- pardon us -- Williams' chance to roar in back-to-back games against Sacramento and Memphis. It should give us a clearer picture of what the No. 2 overall pick can bring to the table when given major minutes, meaning there could be a considerable silver lining in Love's suspension (particularly if it serves the dual purpose of helping K-Love clean up his on-court act a bit).

The long-term question with Williams concerns not only his position but exactly what we might expect out of the No. 2 overall pick in the draft. And that's where the picture gets a little cloudier. Not long before the 2011 draft, we compiled a list of the No. 1 and No. 2 picks from the past 15 years. We'll condense that to just show you the last 15 No. 2 picks prior to Williams.

2010: Evan Turner; 2009: Hasheem Thabeet; 2008: Michael Beasley; 2007: Kevin Durant; 2006: LaMarcus Aldridge; 2005: Marvin Williams; 2004: Emeka Okafor; 2003: Darko!; 2002: Jay Williams; 2001: Tyson Chandler; 2000: Stromile Swift; 1999: Steve Francis; 1998: Mike Bibby; 1997: Keith Van Horn; 1996: Marcus Camby

Let's remind you (and Williams) that this is an extremely mixed bag full of superstars, good players and role players. It's also a mix of guys who came out guns blazing (like Durant) and guys who needed at least a season to figure out the pro game (like Aldridge). There are three ROYs on that list (Beasley, Okafor and Francis), which doesn't seem like a ton in 15 years.

That said, we have a long way to go before the "caged lion" is just another No. 2 pick trying to find his way on the Wolves roster alongside Beasley and Darko. He has a chance to show us a lot these next two nights, and we'll be very curious to see what happens.

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