Every year we (as non-insider fans) have to take the word of experts when it comes to prospects, rookies, and other incoming players that scouts are paid to scout. This trend for hopeful fans has given rise to the world's Mel Kipers and Mike Mayocks and, when it comes to basketball, ESPN's Chad Ford. Those guys are paid to perfect an inexact science, something they often appear to be just guessing about, but if you're a not totally insane fan you can understand that they're going to miss
from time-to-time frequently. Still, in that business it pays to be correct, lest people start questioning why they even click on scouting reports to begin with.
Enter the aforementioned Ford who, thanks to some Redditors, appears to have retroactively made some edits to his draft boards after getting the "inside information" of their first several seasons on an NBA court. You see, it's really not that hard to predict the success of prospective rookies when they're no longer prospective (or rookies).
Here's a couple of examples over the past several years:
In 2012, Ford edited his 2009 preview by jumping James Harden up from No. 6 to No. 3. He also bumped up Jrue Holiday from No. 8 to No. 6, as well as raising the stocks (well after it would help anyone) of DeMar DeRozan and Ty Lawson. Players that got dropped included: Austin Daye, Jonny Flynn, Eric Maynor and Haseem Thabeet.
Later that year Ford used hindsight to edit his 2010 preview raising the stocks of: Eric Bledsoe, Cole Aldrich and Jordan Crawford (amongst others) while lowering the ranks of Luke Babbitt and Devin Ebanks.
This continued for the past three drafts (Ford appears to have not been comfortable enough to edit the 2014 board yet) before the shady practice was exposed (full details are within Reddit link below).
Deadspin, reported on the edits late last night and hours later (which we presume was coincidence) ESPN undid all the updates and reverted Ford's boards back to their original guesswork.
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