NBA Draft: Re-drafting the historic 2009 NBA Draft

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James Harden, Houston Rockets

James Harden, Houston Rockets. Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/Getty Images

The 2009 NBA Draft that helped usher in this era of analytics-driven basketball. Here’s what that draft would look like today with the benefit of hindsight.

Can you believe it’s been almost 10 years since the 2009 NBA Draft took place?

It’s been 10 years since the Minnesota Timberwolves used their two lottery picks to pick two point guards not named Stephen Curry. 10 years since the Oklahoma City Thunder made their first draft selection since moving from Seattle. And 10 years since the Memphis Grizzlies altered the course of their franchise by selecting…Hasheem Thabeet!

It was a draft that fans remember as much for who teams didn’t select, compared to who other teams did pick.

Of course, it’s easy to retroactively ridicule a lot of these selections knowing what we know about these players now, but it shows how precarious betting the fortunes of your franchise on unproven young players, no matter how much planning and scouting goes into the process.

That said, this draft featured a lot of high-end talent, though not as much as some of the more hallowed drafts in NBA history. Going in, Oklahoma Sooners forward Blake Griffin was the consensus No. 1 overall pick, but with the likes of Curry, James Harden and Spanish passing prodigy Ricky Rubio available, there was plenty of reason for optimism if your team possessed a lottery pick.

For better or worse, the athletes in this draft accelerated the inevitability that was the modern, 3-point friendly game. This trend towards accepting the value of shots behind the arc took roughly two decades to come to fruition. That metamorphosis propelled some members of this class to superstardom while rendering others relics of the past.

So what would this draft look like today with the knowledge of each players’ career arcs? That’s what this re-draft hopes to answer.

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