With the Draft Lottery now completed, the Washington Wizards know they are locked into the No. 3 pick for the upcoming 2012 NBA Draft. The question now of course is who do the Wizards choose with that third selection. Names like Thomas Robinson, Bradley Beal and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist are most often being associated with pick No. 3, with Fran Fraschilla of ESPN.com even going so far as to call Kidd-Gilchrist a "great fit" for the Washington organization:
No. 3: Washington Wizards
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Kentucky Wildcats
In another draft, Gilchrist's overall skill package would relegate him to a lower slot in the lottery. Even as a rookie, he may struggle to score and even consistently knock down outside shots. But, the one thing he would be able to hang his hat on in any draft is his competitiveness. And nowhere is that needed more than in Washington.
Gilchrist was the de facto leader of this year's young Kentucky national championship team, setting the tone with his energy, toughness and athleticism. He ran the floor relentlessly and attacked the rim with abandon. He'll rebound his position as well as anyone. And hopefully the way he's conditioned himself to play will rub off on a Wizards team that went 20-46 this season.
If Gilchrist can polish up his offensive game -- he shot 26 percent from beyond the college arc -- he'll start from Day 1 and compete for NBA rookie of the year award. This is a great fit because he will play a prominent role immediately on a team that has to learn how to win.
The knock against Kidd-Gilchrist, as Fraschilla notes above, is his shooting prowess, but his energy, intensity, and athleticism on the wing might outweigh any initial shooting concerns for a Wizards team that needs to get John Wall all the help it can before the point guard chooses to take his craft to another NBA city.
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