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Morning links: ESPN's Chad Ford plays GM; draft-and-stash updates; what the Jazz would have to give up to get Cousins

For months leading up to the draft, NBA reporters try to cut through the rumors and smokescreens to try to find what teams are going to be doing on draft night.

On Tuesday, though, ESPN’s Chad Ford released a “Grade A” mock draft, or a mock in which he makes the pick, not with information he has received, but who he likes the best.

Ford had the Jazz taking UCLA’s Kevon Looney with their No. 12 pick.

“If there is a third tier in this draft, it ends around No. 12, and Looney is the last guy in it. He has the talent of a top-five pick, but it's still unclear where his position will be in the pros, and he's seen as a longer-term project than most. Utah has the flexibility to be able to wait on him. Someday he could be backing up both Favors and Hayward. He's one of the most versatile players in the draft and a steal at No. 12.”

“Steal” is relative term here. In most mock drafts (including Ford's regular one), Looney goes somewhere in the late-teens or early 20s.

Speaking of mock drafts, SB Nation did a massive one with bloggers from each team site making or trading picks. Let’s just say things escalated pretty quickly for the Jazz.

When all the smoke was settled, Utah had made three first-round picks while also acquiring Deron Williams and Lance Stephenson in trades.

Get all the details here, and some commentary over what would have been the craziest Jazz draft night ever here.

Jazz’s draft-and-stash products

ESPN’s Kevin Pelton went over each NBA team’s current “draft-and-stash” products to determine which ones could one day be playing in the NBA.

With FC Barcelona’s Ante Tomic reportedly signing a new deal to stay in Europe, one of the Jazz’s top overseas prospects doesn’t appear to be coming to Utah anytime soon.

But Tomic’s backup, Tibor Pleiss — whose rights are also held by the Jazz — might.

“Backup Pleiss could be a more realistic, if modest, target,” Pelton writes. “He projects as a good rebounder and high-percentage finisher, though foul-prone and not capable of creating his own offense.”

Pelton also went over Brazilian point guard Raul Neto, saying, “Neto hasn't developed as much since then as Utah might have hoped, but he could eventually be a backup point guard.”

What would the Jazz give for DeMarcus Cousins

There doesn’t appear to be a lot of smiles going on in Sacramento right now, with Kings star center DeMarcus Cousins and head coach George Karl reportedly at odds.

According to Yahoo’s Adrian Wojnarowski, Karl is pushing for the Kings to trade Cousins, and an emoji-filled Monday evening tweet by Cousins appeared to call Karl a "snake in the grass."

With all that being the case, CBS Sports’ Zach Harper went through each NBA team and determined how they could acquire Cousins.

In order for Utah to acquire the big man, Harper has the Jazz giving up Rudy Gobert, Alec Burks, Trey Burke and Trevor Booker.

“Jazz fans already stopped reading this section when they saw they were giving up Rudy Gobert. I guarantee it,” Harper wrote. “To make up for it, here's an eight-minute video of every single Gobert block from this past season. I apologize for my insulting suggestion, Utah.”