Just when Marcus Morris’ NBA Draft stock seemed to be rising, Chad Ford’s latest mock over at ESPN.com has the Kansas star forward falling out of the lottery in his first full mock draft. Specifically, he has Morris falling to the Pacers at No. 15 overall to provide another frontcourt presence to team with Pacers star Danny Granger:
The Pacers’ two biggest needs are an athletic guard who can create his own shot off the dribble, and a long, athletic big man who can block shots and rebound. Unfortunately neither of those players appears to be left on the board. So the Pacers have to settle for the next best thing.
Morris is more of a hybrid forward who can play both the 3 and the 4, sort of like Danny Granger. His ability to stretch the floor and rebound should be welcome in Indiana — although I’m sure the Pacers will wish he was an inch or two taller. Boston College’s Reggie Jackson is another real possibility here.
The Indiana Pacers hardly seem the best fit for Morris, so it’s difficult to believe that the draft would actually turn out this way, but it will be interesting to watch how many teams reach for potential in unproven young players or international prospects versus the well-round savvy veteran college presence that Morris brings.