Each week, four of Basketball Insiders’ top writers will break down the latest news and notes around the 2014 NBA Draft. Included is a revised Mock Draft that reflects how each writer sees the draft landscape based on the latest news, workouts and information from in and around the process.
Here is Consensus Ver 2.0:
Check out Version 1.0
Yannis’ Notebook: The Cleveland Cavaliers recently joined the growing list of teams that are going to be looking for a new head coach this summer. With Mike Brown out, their approach for the NBA Draft is going to change dramatically.
Brown preferred to play a slower pace and prioritized defense over everything. The recently promoted David Griffin reportedly plans to hire a coach that pushes the tempo more and puts a strong emphasis on the long ball.
Positioned to draft ninth if the lottery plays out as projected, Griffin has two positions of major need to address: small forward and center. With only $36 million in guaranteed contracts on the books for next season, Griffin can really go in either direction and feel comfortable with being able to address the other in free agency. He’ll also have the bird rights to Luol Deng and Spencer Hawes, two veterans who are very capable of starting at the three and five.
As far as centers go, the top prize – Joel Embiid – will be long gone barring an unforeseen drop. The only other center prospect worth drafting in that range is Jusuf Nurkic. However, for a team that is going to enter next season with playoff aspirations, he may be too far away from being a consistent contributor for the Cavaliers to invest in right now. The pressure to win immediately is extreme, too extreme to justify going with such a big project, especially considering that they already have a couple.
At the small forward position, their options are much more vast and intriguing. Doug McDermott could really fit in well into an attack based around the guard play of quality attackers like Kyrie Irving and Dion Waiters. He’s one of the best shooters college basketball has ever seen, and that’s generally a skill that translates well, especially for someone like McDermott who has a quick release and endless range. He does have his defensive deficiencies, though, and that remains a weakness of the Cavaliers. He’s also viewed as somewhat of a tweener and if he pans out being best suited to play the power forward position, he’s going to further muck up the log jam there created by Tristan Thompson and Anthony Bennett.
Dario Saric is a strong possibility for them. His stock is on the rise after a stellar campaign in the Adriatic League. He can score in a variety of ways and has really good size for a small forward, but there seems to be conflicting voices within his inner circle on whether he should come over right away. Stashing-and-dashing is not in the Cavaliers’ best interest with this pick. That’s a much more viable option for their high second-round pick.
In the end, James Young could be the guy who everyone in their war room agrees on because he meets so many of their needs. He’s young, but skilled and talented enough to contribute right away, especially offensively. He’s an impressive athlete who will thrive in transition and fit in nicely with the ball dominant Irving and Waiters as a serious spot-up shooting threat.
This is going to be Griffin’s first time being the head shot caller on draft night. He likely won’t have the benefit of landing the No. 1 pick as the Cavaliers have in two of the last three drafts, but with a class as deep as this one, there’s no reason why he shouldn’t be able to walk away with a difference maker.
Joel’s Notebook: Attending the Draft Combine always helps put a little bit of perspective into these mock drafts because meeting these guys in person gives a sense of which players will see their stocks rise, simply because they’re bound to interview well. Charisma can go a long way in this process, and when combined with talent it can be hard to pass up on players who teams like on a personal level. Rodney Hood, Doug McDermott, Shabazz Napier and Dante Exum were all really good with the media on Thursday and are sure to dangle that charm in front of NBA execs looking to potentially hire them.
As for this week’s mock, Exum gets a boost to No. 2 for a couple of reasons: He and Philly head coach Brett Brown have history working together in Australia, and Exum said that some of the teams he spoke with are interested in running two point-guard sets for their offenses. Philadelphia was the first team that came to mind there (though an inevitable interview with Orlando will create the same possibility). Can you imagine how long that backcourt would be with Exum and Michael Carter-Williams? Exum on the Sixers is really intriguing, and a fit I’m really starting to like the more I think about it.
Tyler Ennis sees a boost this week, too, as his proclamation that he’s the best point guard in the draft shows a confidence that’s easy to buy into. Orlando, if they do end up with Parker, Wiggins or Embiid with their first pick, will hope against hope that Ennis drops to them at No. 12, but with a likely rise in interest coming for Ennis, they may have to settle for someone else there.
Doug McDermott is a heck of a scorer, but I think he drops out of the lottery. Chicago would be a great fit for him. Nik Stauskas in Toronto would make Raptors fans extremely happy, and anybody that has Shabazz Napier outside of the first round is crazy. He’s small, but has championship pedigree and can shoot the lights out. I like him as a late first-rounder.
Alex’s Notebook: Cleanthony Early is an intriguing player, who could move up draft boards once he gets in the workout setting. He’s currently being projected as a late first-round pick, but he could move into the late teens or early 20s if he handles his business during the pre-draft process.
Early is 23 years old, which makes him one of the oldest players in this draft class. That’s something that may hurt him through this process, since teams typically want to bring in younger players. However, Early is capable of helping a team right away and he still has room to grow as a player.
He was terrific in the NCAA Tournament, leading Wichita State and averaging 27 points and seven rebounds while shooting 65.6 percent from the field. Executives told Basketball Insiders that Early was one of the players who helped themselves the most during March Madness. He was initially being projected as a mid-second round pick, but climbed after shining on college basketball’s biggest stage.
One reason that Early may go higher than expected is that he hasn’t received the exposure that a lot of these other first-round prospects have gotten. One NBA executive said that he’s the least scouted college player who is currently projected to go in the first round, since he played at Wichita State and didn’t get as much national attention as other players. Once teams watch Early’s film and watch him in individual workouts, he could help himself.
Early was named to the Wooden All-American Team after averaging 16.4 points and 5.9 rebounds and leading Wichita State to a perfect 34-0 regular season record.
Before the tournament, I spoke to Early and asked if him if he has what it takes to be a significant contributor in the NBA.
“I have played with a lot of professional basketball players that are in the NBA, guys that went to the NBA recently or are supposedly going to the NBA this year and I’ve always competed with them at a level to where I knew I was good and knew I could potentially make it there,” Early said. “It was just a matter of getting that exposure and being seen and just working my butt off. I just believed that I had to get so good that they can’t ignore [me], you know what I mean? I feel like my game can translate to the NBA because I always know that I’m going to work hard to improve on anything I need to improve on.”
Steve’s Notebook: After spending the last couple of days at the 2014 NBA Draft Combine talking about this draft class with NBA executives and scouts, there is one thing glaringly clear: Teams don’t have a lot of favorite players yet, at least not a consensus favorite anyway.
There are a few new scenarios playing out, some of it as a result of top overall prospects Joel Embiid, Jabari Parker and Andrew Wiggins opting not to attend the combine. Australian guard Dante Exum did well for himself. He met with a few teams who found him engaging, smart and humble and he showed strong athletic testing numbers, specifically those relating to speed and agility.
Julius Randle did well for himself too. The teams that met with him said he was everything advertised and a little more. The buzz around him is he may be the player most ready to contribute on the draft board and there is a real sense that he is in contention for the top overall pick depending on who lands it.
There is real concern about Joel Embiid and his back. A number of teams commented that if Embiid’s camp plays the “selective” interview and workout game, and limits him to visiting with just the top three teams, he may have a draft day tumble of Jared Sullinger proportions. Back injuries are no joke among NBA executives and the fact that this is the second back related injury in Embiid’s very short career, there is real concern.
By and large this draft class seems to be filled with genuinely good guys. One executive commented that after meeting with 18 players in this class, ranked all over the board that only one player came across as selfish and self-centered. The rest were largely really good guys and more importantly came across as really good teammates.
The love affair with Cleanthony Early continued, especially after teams that did not scout him heavily especially at the general manager and team president level were simply blown away with how he carries himself. He came across in meetings as a quiet and humble kid. Very unassuming. He backed up the personal component with a good showing on the floor in drills.
The NBA Draft Lottery will be held on May 20, so from there things will really start to take shape as teams can really narrow in on players in their pick range.
While the draft combine was a first look for a number of players, there will be a big group workout in Los Angeles hosted by the L.A. Clippers and members of all 30 teams. The players invited to this workout were mainly those fringe guys that did not get into the combine, although a number of the combine invites projected in the second round have committed to attend and compete, so in short order teams will get to see some real basketball action and that should start to change the landscape of the draft.
2020 NBA Mock Draft – The Final 60-Pick Mock
What a long and winding road the 20201 NBA Draft has been. While this draft cycle has seen its ups and down, the moment of truth if finally upon us.
What a long and winding road the 20201 NBA Draft has been. While this draft cycle has seen its ups and down, the moment of truth if finally upon us.
Here is a final look at the 2020 Draft, and how it may play out in this final 60-pick Mock Draft of the 20202 NBA Draft process:
2020 NBA Mock Draft – First Round – 08/21/2020
The 2020 NBA Draft order is now locked in, however, there are tons of additional questions to be answered in the coming weeks. Here is a look at the first round, in this Basketball Insiders Mock Draft.
To say the 2020 NBA Draft has been chaotic is an understatement, however with last night’s NBA Draft Lottery out of the way, things are starting to at least trend in a positive direction.
That doesn’t mean there are not challenges ahead, namely when the actual NBA Draft will take place.
There is a growing sense that the NBA and the players are going to push back the start of the next cap year, which will likely impact when and how the NBA Draft plays out.
Typically, the Draft is a major transaction window for NBA teams, and with so much unknown surrounding how the salary cap will be set, and when trades and transactions typically consummated around the draft would become official, there is a lot of uncertainty, making the 2020 NBA draft wide open on many fronts.
The hope among teams is that some clarity on all of this will surface in the coming weeks, but for now most teams are operating in uncharted waters.
With all of that in mind, here is a look at the 2020 NBA Draft First round, which will be the first of many weekly Mock Drafts we’ll be dropping all the way up to the draft, whenever that finally gets set.
The Basketball Insiders Annual Consensus Mock Drafts will begin in September, as will full 60-pick mocks starting next week, so stay tuned.
2019 NBA Consensus Mock Draft – Final
For the last seven weeks, four of Basketball Insiders’ top writers have been breaking down the latest news and notes surrounding the 2019 NBA Draft, here is their final look at all 60 picks.
For the last seven weeks, four of Basketball Insiders’ top writers have been breaking down the latest news and notes surrounding the 2019 NBA Draft. Each week they provided an updated mock draft that reflected how each writer saw the draft landscape based on the latest news, workouts and information from the pre-draft process as well as a notebook, outlining each writers’ thoughts, observations and reporting on the draft.
Keep in mind we are trying to find commonalities, which is why it is called the Consensus. The writers involved do not see each other’s selections until these are posted. It is done deliberately to make sure each writer is not influencing the others.
Here is the Final Consensus Mock for the 2019 NBA Draft:
*** The 30th pick in the first round was traded to the Detroit Pistons, and the picks made reflect that trade, which will not happen until after the player is selected
***The 32nd pick in the second round was traded to the Indiana Pacers, and the picks made reflect that trade, which will not happen until after the player is selected
***The 41st pick in the second round was traded to the Golden State Warriors, and the picks made reflect that trade, which will not happen until after the player is selected
Jesse’s Notebook Some recent trades, including the trades for Anthony Davis and Mike Conley, as well as a few other transactions have shifted the draft board yet again. First-round picks are being moved around after a period in which prying away a first-rounder from another team was basically a non-starter. With the way the last few days have unfolded, and with the Western Conference seemingly wide open, I am predicting there will be several major trades on draft night. Add in the uncertainty surrounding several star free agents, and it’s simply impossible to predict with much precision what will happen on Thursday. However, this is the sort of environment that excites fans almost as much as the actual playoffs and NBA Finals, and I am not one to complain.
What is interesting about this is the fact that this draft seemingly drops off a cliff (arguably) once we get to the ninth pick. It would be more understandable to anticipate major moves on draft night with a loaded class, but that simply isn’t the case this year. My draft board has moved around wildly throughout this process, and I am bracing myself to be off the mark on draft night. All it takes is one trade for things to get thrown off in a major way, and I am anticipating at least a few major moves.
Throughout this process, I was looking for a handful of players to grab my attention and never let it go. Last season, that player was Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, and I was very interested in seeing where Michael Porter Jr. would ultimately land given his talent and injury issues. That player never really emerged this year, however. I think Cameron Reddish is one of the more intriguing players in the class considering his talent and upside, but shaky college record.
I look forward to revisiting this draft a few years down the road. At least one general manager is going to get a steal somewhere in the middle or backend of the draft. Considering how comparable the talent is throughout the board once we get past the lottery, it’s hard to say who the steal of the draft may be. Again, I am fully prepared for draft night to go off script in a major way. I recommend all NBA fans do the same.
Drew’s Notebook After months of planning, the 2019 NBA Draft is finally upon us. And per the usual, the closer we get, the harder it is to differentiate between fact and fiction given the number of smokescreens generated by agents and teams.
The Grizzlies appear dead set on Ja Morant. And rightfully so considering they traded away Mike Conley. The Knicks have continued to do their due diligence having worked out Vanderbilt’s Darius Garland just yesterday – and those close to Garland say the interest is real. On the flip side of the Knicks’ decision, RJ Barrett claims to have made considerable improvements since we last saw him at Duke – take that with a grain of salt. But the Knicks still appear to be the first team with a real decision to make.
We also hear that Nassir Little could go as high as nine to Washington and that Sekou Doumbouya might have a guarantee from Orlando at 16. So watch out for those curveballs, too.
As far as teams looking to consolidate their picks are concerned, the Hawks have resisted the idea of packaging the eighth pick along with 10 and/or 17, which may prohibit them from moving up as high as they would prefer. Atlanta owned six picks coming into the draft process – 8, 10, 17, 35, 41 and 44. They’ve already dealt 41 to Golden State and 44 to Miami. We’ll see if they continue moving/consolidating picks in hopes of mitigating the number of rookies they bring into training camp.
We’ve also heard that the Celtics would like to package their picks to move up, but it seems as though they’ve struggled to gain any traction – probably because teams can’t accurately predict who will be available with their selections (the Celtics’ first selection is 14). Boston may have to wait for some names to come off the board before others decide if trading back for multiple selections is the right move.
Draft night will inevitably deliver a number of surprises to the Brooklyn crowd. I expect heavy trade activity tomorrow night in advance of another wild free agency period, beginning June 30.
Spencer’s Notebook The day is here, folks! Tonight marks the official date of the 2019 NBA Draft, which will begin potentially one of the most hectic summers the association has ever seen.
In past notebooks from different versions of our Consensus Mock, I surmised that much of the shakeout would depend on what happened with Anthony Davis in New Orleans. Well, that situation resolved itself this past week when the Los Angeles Lakers made a franchise-altering trade with the Pelicans to land “The Brow” in Hollywood.
New Orleans executive vice president of basketball operations David Griffin now holds significant draft capital, as the team has both the first and fourth pick in this upcoming class. He also swindled three more first-rounders along with The Big Easy’s new upstart talents in Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram, and Josh Hart. Due to the abundance of young guard/wing talent, and multiple teams vying to trade up using different packages, there’s a reason for the Pelicans to deal away No. 4.
And because of the uncertainty of what will happen at that slot, it’s difficult to predict how the draft will ultimately shake out. For example, if New Orleans decides to hang onto it, they could take Darius Garland, or RJ Barrett (if he falls) or whomever they deem fits their organization. However, if a team like the Atlanta Hawks jumps the Cleveland Cavaliers to draft Jarrett Culver or De’Andre Hunter, it could cause a domino effect that may completely alter everybody else’s plans.
Just in the past 48 hours, we learned about developments in New York. According to ESPN’s Jonathan Givony, the Knicks brass is seriously considering Garland at No. 3 and worked him out Wednesday. Whether this is actual interest or a way to drive up an asking price for their draft pick in order to make a deal of their own, we don’t actually know. The same thing could be said for Cleveland, who despite having Collin Sexton, is intrigued by the dynamic point guard.
At this point in the process, the real information could differ completely from what’s being leaked. Smoke is already filling up the room. It’s almost impossible to predict what will happen in this year’s draft, especially when most people around NBA circles believe that, at the tail end of the lottery, there could be draft picks moved every which way.
This is like throwing a dart blindfolded. As I tweeted last night, we might be burning our mock drafts at the rate we rip up brackets in the month of March.
The Utah Jazz and Milwaukee Bucks already moved their first-round picks in separate deals. That could only be the beginning. Who knows what the Hawks and Boston Celtics will do with three first-round selections in such a difficult class to differentiate player talent?
We won’t have to wait much longer to find out. Enjoy draft night, everyone!
Steve’s Notebook The 2019 NBA Draft is tonight in Brooklyn, New York, and while the suspense at the top of the draft board looks unchanged, there is a lot of potential for movement everywhere else.
As things stand today, Zion Williamson will be the top overall pick with almost no surprise there.
At number two, there continued to be talk last night that New Orleans was trying to pry the number two pick out of Memphis to grab Duke’s RJ Barrett, which would push Memphis back to the fourth spot and catching either Murray State’s Ja Morant or Vanderbilt’s Darius Garland, after the Knicks select at three. While these talks remain fluid, it does not appear at this point there will be a deal, but as is true with all trades, the right combination of assets changing hands can often turn a “No” into a “Yes.”
The New York Knicks have done their fair share of waffling on what to do at number three. While RJ Barrett remains the odds on favorite, the Knicks did take a long look at Garland on Wednesday in New York, as well as having surveyed executives from other teams for their views on Barrett, which is common due diligence, but also shows there may be some doubt on the long-term fit of Barrett.
The Cleveland Cavaliers have also been busy working on trade scenarios that could include in the fifth overall pick, the partially guaranteed cap clearing contract of JR Smith and their second pick at 26. The narrative around Cleveland is that they want to build around last year’s pick Collin Sexton, but the potential availability of Garland could test that commitment. Since the NBA Draft Combine, the Cavs have been linked to Duke’s Cam Reddish in trade down scenarios. There has been a belief that if Texas Tech guard Jarrett Culver is there at five, the Cavs may grab him and flip him to the Atlanta Hawks for either of the eighth or tenth picks and the Hawks pick at 17 which they obtained from the Brooklyn Nets.
As for some of the notable teams:
The prevailing thought is the Chicago Bulls are grabbing either Virginia’s De’Andre Hunter or UNC’s Coby White at 7.
The Washington Wizards seemed to have three guys in their sights: White, UNC’s Nassir Little and Limoges CSP’s Sekou Doumbouya.
The Hawks seem to be where Mega Bemax’s Goga Bitadze is going to land, likely at the ten spot.
The Minnesota Timberwolves are said to be extremely high on Gonzaga’s Rui Hachimura, although things could get interesting if Texas big man Jaxson Hayes is still on the board.
The Miami HEAT seem very open to trading their pick at 13, and there was talk in New York that Darius Bazley may be the HEAT’s guy, even as high as 13 if they keep the pick. The Pistons are also believed to be very high on Bazley.
The 2019 NBA draft is shaping up to be one of the turbulent drafts in recent years. A typical draft will have 15 to 18 transactions, most involving moving picks around. This year’s draft may double that when all the trade volume is done, so don’t get too attached to anyone your team may draft – they may not be there long.
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