February 12, 2013; Gainesville, FL, USA; Kentucky Wildcats forward Nerlens Noel (3) is checked on by head coach John Calipari after suffering an knee injury against the Florida Gators during the second half at the Stephen C. O

Will the Nerlens Noel Injury Affect The Charlotte Bobcats Draft Strategy?

Nerlens Noel doesn’t have any fractured or broken bones, but after suffering a gruesome knee injury against Florida on Tuesday, Sportscenter says he has a torn ACL.

He was a consensus lottery pick heading into the season, and that hadn’t changed… Until now.

Who knows if Noel will even enter the draft after this injury.

Kyrie Irving sat out a significant portion of his only college season and still went one-and-done. It’s worked out pretty well for him.

But to the question at hand: Will this injury affect how Charlotte drafts this year?

I’m inclined to say no, just because I don’t think the Bobcats were really looking at drafting him.

I don’t care what ESPN or any other draft prognosticator says. Even if Noel was still healthy today, Charlotte’s top five should look like this:

1. Cody Zeller: A legit center, a great rebounder, and a young player who already has a well rounded post game on offense.
2. Ben McLemore: A big, athletic guard who knows how to score. He’s a solid three point shooter and intense defender.
3. Anthony Bennett: A strong, athletic power forward with a decent, and improving, jumper (and three-point shot).
4. Shabazz Muhammed: Another offensively talented, big man-child who can turn into a guy that can realistically play the 2-through-4 positions.
5. Nerlens Noel: A defensively minded, tall, lanky shot blocker. He’s got a high ceiling, but isn’t close to the most offensively gifted player in the draft.

Charlotte drafted an offensive project last year. Michael Kidd-Gilchrist was brought in to be the heart and soul of the Bobcats’ defense and provide the ‘Cats with energy, emotion and leadership. While you can’t ever have too many of those guys, the Bobcats really need to get better on the glass and at putting the ball in the basket.

Obviously our thoughts are with Noel right now and we hope for a speedy recovery.

Tags: Charlotte Bobcats Nba Draft Nerlens Noel

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