Although he did not win the NBA Championship, one of the biggest winner from the recently concluded NBA Finals was Spurs' Danny Green (even if it was kind of preposterous the articles that said that Green would be the Finals MVP had the Spurs won). The ability to make 3's at a good rate with the size (6' 6") to be a good defender, that kind of sounds like someone we know. Yes, Cal's Allen Crabbe may just fit that role for a contender. In a weakish draft class (particularly at the top) with many projects, Crabbe is one of the few difference maker that can make an instant splash in the NBA and possibly the NBA playoffs next season.
Projected to go somewhere in the middle to end of the first round, the consensus is that Crabbe will be picked in the mid-20's. Although he is likely to go in the first round, Crabbe was not one of 10 potential draftees that are invited to the "Green Room" tonight. He is expected, however, to attend the draft tonight at Barclay Center in Brooklyn. If any NBA team is looking for a guy to (at the very least) take the role of a 3 point specialist right now to hit that corner 3's, Crabbe is your guy (not to mention his developing game as a slasher, though he is obviously not a James Harden just yet).
Relive the CGB round table of remembering Allen Crabbe. From this post, we (under the group pseudoname of Scott Chong) contributed to an Allen Crabbe profile for the Atlanta Hawks. Here is SB Nation's profile on Crabbe.
Two new Crabbe profiles has emerged today:
One from Jeff Faraudo that says that Crabbe will be attending the draft in person (and maybe shake hands with David Stern?)
"It's been my dream my entire life to play in the NBA. I'm just worried about getting myself there," said Crabbe, who will attend the draft at the Barclay Center in Brooklyn. "It's not like college -- you can't choose a team you want to go to."
and discuss how Crabbe has been working out with former Bears, AJ Diggs.
He knows he still isn't a great finisher at the rim, but that has been his focus since declaring for the draft after his junior season. Crabbe has worked since early April with A.J. Diggs, a former Cal guard and now a basketball trainer affiliated with Crabbe's agent, Sam Goldfeder.
Crabbe said he worked with Diggs five times a week to improve his conditioning as well as his ballhandling skills and effectiveness off the pick-and-roll.
From Steve Kroner's article on SF Chronicle:
This is Crabbe's response to all the current mock drafts:
"It's not really the GMs putting out mock drafts," Crabbe noted, "and those are the ones who are selecting us."
And this is what front office people have been telling him:
"Every team is in need of a shooter," Crabbe said, "and that's what I do the best." He averaged 18.4 points per game this past season and was named the Pac-12 Player of the Year.
The consensus: Crabbe is a pretty good NBA prospect
From ESPN.com's (insider subscription only) "Secret NBA Draft Big Board", Chad Ford has Crabbe being the one with the biggest positive difference on the "secret Big Board".
18. Allen Crabbe, SG, California
Secret NBA Draft Big Board Rating: 60.8
High Score: 8
Low Score: 5
Ford's comments: Relative to my Big Board, where he is ranked 25th, Crabbe gets the biggest boost from the Secret Big Board. Clearly teams feel his shooting prowess and good size at his position make him a safer bet than other shooters on the board. His draft night range is pretty broad -- from 15 to 30.
Similarly, the recent Reddit AMA with a NBA scout, James Kerti, has him raving about Crabbe:
Hi. :) I really like Allen Crabbe from Cal, who's projected to go late in the first round. He's a great outside shooter who can also create space for his pull-up jumper. He'd do especially well on a team with a structured offense that can get him open three-pointers coming off screens. He's a very good wing defender too, which you can't say about some of Crabbe's peers in this draft.
Following some redditor's comment about Crabbe's Defense, here is Kerti's reply:
Every person has their own ideas about how a guy should play defense.
From my perspective, Crabbe looks a little awkward out there, but he defends well one-on-one and has a good understanding of defense within a team context.
The latter is becoming more and more important as NBA defensive continue evolving and becoming more sophisticated. The days of being responsible only for your own man are over.
More from ESPN's insider: Who does Crabbe resemble?
25. Allen Crabbe, California
Comparisons: Terrence Ross (96.2), Antoine Wright, Klay Thompson, Wayne Ellington
Ross, Thompson and Crabbe all played similar styles together in the Pac-12. None of them got to the free throw line on a regular basis despite the conference's whistle-happy reputation.
The Klay Thompson comparison has been thrown around quite a bit by people given both guys came from the Pac-12, but Thompson handled the ball more back in his day at Wazzu. The Terrence Ross comparison is interesting as Ross didn't shoot all that well last year as the 8th pick out of Washington, although he was also a good scorer who grabs quite a few boards as a guard in his sophomore year.
There will no doubt be trades involving draft picks and players tonight. Following the NBA Draft tradition, trades do not get officially approved until after the night. Consequently, there are often awkward pictures of draftee posing with gears of a team that he knows that he will not play for.
Let's look at where the mock drafts predict that Allen Crabbe will go?
Scott Howard-Cooper has Crabbe going 27th to the Denver Nuggets:
Denver needs help from behind the arc. Though he needs to get stronger, Crabbe has the size, accuracy and decent 3-point range to fit the shooting-guard mold and be an ideal role player for a team that already knows how to run.
David Aldrige has Crabbe going 17th to the Atlanta Hawks:
Needs: Small forward, frontcourt size
Speaking of whom, Crabbe is the closest thing in this Draft to Klay Thompson, and the Hawks, with back-to-back picks, can address their big man needs next. Crabbe can fill it up and he can probably play some three, and GM Danny Ferry wants players who can play multiple positions. There are questions about Crabbe's consistency, but new coach Mike Budenholzer needs talent. They'll be a player in free agency, to be sure, and address some of those needs. With Lou Williams coming off an ACL tear, Atlanta must find someone who can shoot.
Chris Ford's Mock Draft 7.0 (insider only) has Crabbe being selected 26th by the Minnesota Timberwolves:
Analysis: Minnesota wants shooting and they need help at the 2 and 3. I think they could grab another shooter, even if the take Caldwell-Pope at No. 9. Crabbe has the size to play the 3 and would add another target for Ricky Rubio. Rudy Gobert also is a possibility here.
Chris Mannix has Crabbe going 20th to the Chicago Bulls:
The Bulls ranked 29th in three-pointers made and 21st in long-range percentage this season, and Richard Hamilton, Marco Belinelli and Nate Robinson could all be gone this summer. Enter Crabbe, who has legitimate NBA range. Crabbe's three-point percentage last season was his lowest in three seasons at Cal, but he shot well at the combine, has good size for his position and has shown an ability to use screens well. It's worth noting that the Bulls have an excellent track record at the back end of the first round (Taj Gibson at No. 26 in '09, Jimmy Butler at No. 30 in '11).
On some other sites:
Rotoworld's Dr. A has Crabbe going 25th to the LA Clippers.
25: L.A. Clippers - Allen Crabbe SG California
The Clippers have a need at shooting guard, with Willie Green getting a lot of starts, Jamal Crawford embracing the role of sixth man and Chauncey Billups a shell of his former self. Crabbe is a shot maker, likes to run off screens and has a solid offensive game, which should work well with the Clippers' offense, regardless of who might be coaching the team next season.
Another Rotoworld mock draft, from Ed Isaacson, has Crabbe going 20th to the Bulls.
20. Chicago – Allen Crabbe, G, California
The Bulls are one of the many teams in need of perimeter shooting and they have a chance at one of the better ones in this draft in Crabbe. With great size at the shooting guard position, Crabbe will be able to find good looks, and should benefit from a healthy Derrick Rose.
Hoopsworld somehow has Crabbe lasting until the middle of the 2nd round, 44th pick to Dallas Mavericks. This one might be an aberration.
NBADraft.net has Crabbe going 25th to the LA Clippers.
Earlier mock drafts have Crabbe going to the Nets at 22nd and the Thunder at 29th.
How does Crabbe fit in to these teams?
ATLANTA HAWKS (17th and 18th picks):
The Hawks have back to back picks at 17th and 18th. This could be a big transition year for the Hawks as the team actually could (but unlikely) add both Dwight Howard (a local guy) and Chris Paul to the squad. As with the case for many other teams on this list, the Hawks have a new head coach in Mike Budenholzer, who came over from the Spurs where he served as an assistant (and see the value of a guy like Danny Green first hand). Expecting plenty of turnover for the Hawks, the starting SG and SF for the Hawks last year was Devin Harris and Kyle Korver. If that remains the same, Crabbe may crack the starting lineup or supplant Lou Williams as the main 6th men who can score off the bench.
CHICAGO BULLS (20th pick):
The Bulls are expected to be a championship contender with the return of Derrick Rose next year from injury. Marco Bellineli, whom Crabbe has been compared to by some, filled the SG role this past year but is expected to leave the team. Starting SF Luol Deng has also been rumored to possibly be traded. At the very least, Crabbe would give the Bulls a replacement for Bellineli, or rather for Jimmy Butler off the bench as Butler (and his 1+ 3's per game) moves from the bench to the starting lineup.
BROOKLYN NETS (22nd pick):
The Nets also have a brand new coach that you may have heard off, Jason Kidd. While there is that Cal connection there, the Nets also do have a need for a better shooter. The starting SG/SF last years were Joe Johnson (never a great shooter even though makes a lot of buckets from taking a lot of shots) and Keith Bogan. The last Cal Bears to be drafted in the first round, happened to be Ryan Anderson to the Nets as the 21st pick in 2008.
LOS ANGELES CLIPPERS (25th pick):
Another team that has a new coach (Doc Rivers from the Celtics), the Clippers are also in a possibly big transition year (Griffin to the Lakers for sign and trade for Dwight Howard?). This is another potential contender with an opening at SG where Crabbe can shine. Crabbe, of course, came from the LA region (Price High School, founded by his grandfather).
MINNESOTA TIMBERWOLVES (26th pick):
The Brandon Roy experiment didn't quite work out, so the T-Wolves can use a true SG (rather than running Luke Ridnour out there with Ricky Rubio). Crabbe would give Minnesota another 3 point threat in the perimeter, along with Kevin Love.
DENVER NUGGETS (27th pick):
Another contender with a new coach, former player Brian Shaw (I actually recall seeing Brian Shaw at Haas scouting Leon Powe, etc. when I was a student), the Nuggets may need a replacement for Andre Iguodala (I'm not purposely highlighting the former Pac-10 guys but there are plenty of connections). in the near future. Crabbe can stretch the floor on the opposite side of Danilo Gallinari.
OKLAHOMA CITY THUNDERS (29th pick):
The OKC thunder still need a replacement for trading away the breakout superstar that is James Harden. Kevin Martin (not a bad comparison for Crabbe, by the way) filled that role a bit last year but Crabbe can be a younger more athletic version of Martin.
With many of these contenders in the mix drafting late where Crabbe is expected to be selected, Allen could easily land in a good situation where he gets some instant exposure as a rotation guy on a contender. Given how his stock has pretty much risen since the beginning of the NBA Draft process, I would not be surprised one bit if a team actually move up slightly to grab Crabbe (kind of like when the Lions moved up to get Jahvid Best).
Best of luck to Allen Crabbe tonight as he (hopefully) extends Cal's influence in the NBA.