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.
Joel’s Notebook: There’s nothing quite so anticlimactic as the Cleveland Cavaliers earning the top overall selection in yet another draft (this one makes it three of the last four), but at least all those teams that purposefully tanked weren’t rewarded for their consistently and embarrassingly awful play this past season. Of course, Milwaukee and Philadelphia both ended up with top-three picks, which in this draft means they’ll probably end up with franchise-altering talents anyway, but the top selection went to a team that actually gave making the playoffs a solid effort. That’s good, at least, but Cleveland? They’ve gotten too creative with their lottery picks in the past. Let’s hope they make the right call this time around and take Andrew Wiggins or Jabari Parker.
The most disappointing lottery scenario of the night came at the hands of the Detroit Pistons, who needed to have their pick in the top eight to keep it, and since the No. 9 team leapfrogged them, their pick goes to Charlotte, who gets back into the lottery after having to fork over their own No. 16 pick to Chicago.
Fans of the Boston Celtics and L.A. Lakers can’t be happy with their picks, either, but in my mock draft they end up with pretty solid talents, anyway. Julius Randle and Marcus Smart will probably end up being two of the top four or five players in this draft, so if one or both falls to that six or seven range, L.A. and Boston won’t end up faring quite so badly.
As for why Dario Saric is a top-five pick this week, Utah at No. 5 makes a lot of sense if Wiggins, Parker, Dante Exum and Joel Embiid are the four that come off the board first, as expected. People don’t know much about Saric, but he’s a mature and versatile Euro prospect coming off a really good year overseas. He’s definitely a lottery talent, and having him go as high as No. 5 isn’t as crazy as it may sound.
Alex’s Notebook: With the Orlando Magic falling to the No. 4 pick, they may have an easy decision on draft night. If the first three picks are some combination of Andrew Wiggins, Jabari Parker and Joel Embiid (as projected), they will have Dante Exum fall into their lap.
At No. 4, he would not only be the best player available, but he would also fill the biggest need for the Magic since they don’t have a long-term solution at point guard. If Orlando had won the lottery, they likely would’ve taken a serious look at Exum; now, they may be able to draft him without having to explain the move or risk passing on like Wiggins, Parker or Embiid.
Obviously, it’s possible that Exum could be one of the first three players off of the board, in which case the Magic would have to go in another direction. But if he’s there when Rob Hennigan and his staff are on the clock, he would be an excellent pick for this organization.
A backcourt of Exum and Victor Oladipo would be very interesting and scary for years to come as the duo develops. Remember, the Magic have been looking for their point guard of the future for awhile now. It was rumored that Orlando wanted to draft Marcus Smart with the No. 2 pick in last year’s draft before he decided to return to Oklahoma State for his sophomore season.
Exum could be the star that the Magic have been looking for, as well as the facilitator who can get the most out of Orlando’s young pieces such as Oladipo, Tobias Harris, Nikola Vucevic and Maurice Harkless among others. The Magic also have the No. 12 pick in the draft, which would still allow them to draft a wing (I have them picking James Young) or the best player available.
This is an important draft for the Magic, but they shouldn’t have a tough choice to make if Wiggins, Parker and Embiid are gone, and Exum falls to them.
Yannis’ Notebook: Say what you want about Philadelphia 76ers general manager Sam Hinkie and how he went about last season with no intentions of winning, the team could not be in much of a better position than they are right now. With last year’s Rookie of the Year in Michael Carter-Williams and three lottery picks set to make their debut next year, they have gone from a team stuck in the middle to one with a young core that they can potentially build the next great 76ers team off of.
The big question is which direction does he go in on draft night? The third overall pick is not what he was hoping for, but because each of the top three prospects – Jabari Parker, Joel Embiid and Andrew Wiggins – declared, they’re going to end up with one of the guys they were going to consider with the top overall selection anyway.
At three, they’re basically going to have their decision made by what the Cleveland Cavaliers and Milwaukee Bucks do. Where things get interesting is at the 10th selection. There are going to be far more options to consider at that spot and with just about every position outside of point guard (and whatever position the No. 3 pick plays) being a justifiable need to address, anything is possible.
It’s important to note that the 76ers are going to have five second-round picks. With the small forward and power forward positions having a lot of depth, the 76ers could be inclined to look for a center or shooting guard at this spot. Last year’s No. 6 overall selection, Nerlens Noel, has been projected as a center by many, but power forward could end up being his more natural position.
Assuming Wiggins is off the board and they end up with either Jabari Parker or Joel Embiid at three, shooting guard seems the most likely. The 76ers will likely have their choice of James Young, Gary Harris, Nik Stauskas, Zach LaVine and P.J. Hairston – although the latter two would be somewhat of a reach if the 76ers took them at 10.
There’s always the possibility of the 76ers trading out of this spot as well. A team like the Phoenix Suns or Chicago Bulls with multiple first-round picks may want to try and flip those for the opportunity to move up.
No matter what happens, it’s hard to envision the 76ers not walking away as one of the winners of this draft just as they were last year. Winning immediately hasn’t been a priority for Hinkie and they may not be competitive for most of next season, but the wheels are in motion for them to end up being far better than they were when he took over.
Steve’s Notebook: It happens every year. The NBA scouts and draft pundits get excited about the potential of some of the players that will clearly go at the top of the draft, and tend to marginalize the college players that have achieved things.
There are a few players that got nothing but praise by the decision makers at the combine in Chicago, and there is a real sense that a couple of them could go significantly higher in the draft as a result.
Creighton’s Doug McDermott has a fan club. That’s really the only way to say it. Maybe it’s because he played for so long and has been thoroughly scouted or maybe it’s because he can just flat out score, but teams and executives seem enamored with him. There are a hundred things McDermott may not be able to do in the NBA, but the one thing everyone agrees he can do is score. McDermott is believed to be very much in the mold of a Ryan Anderson or Kyle Korver type in the NBA that can just flat out shoot the ball. The belief is when he plays with a real NBA point guard and gets the kind of space stretch-fours get in the NBA, there is almost a consensus that he could excel. That does not mean McDermott is climbing into the top 10, but when the playoff teams start drafting or the teams with a second pick in the draft come around, you can expect the McDermott is going to go considerably higher than most people think unless he simply craters in workouts.
Michigan State’s Adreian Payne drew similar rave reviews. Several teams that met with him during the combine said he was one of the more polished and poised guys they had seen and that his body of work makes him a sure fire first-rounder. The question becomes how high will he go? Some teams drafting in the late teens-twenties have said they doubted he’d be there when they picked, but if he was, they’d be hard pressed to pass on him. The draft is always a game of who falls to you, but with Payne, he might be the guy that jumps up and knocks a guy out of the teens portion of the draft; he has that kind of fanfare around him among NBA teams.
Wichita State’s Cleanthony Early also gets lumped into this category, largely because NBA GMs had not really seen him until the tournament. Early’s demeanor in meetings and his overall approach to the process won him a lot of fans in the interview process and, much like Andrew Nicholson was a few years ago, he seems to be the most commonly talked about name in terms of a late draft sleeper. Early has a full dance card of workouts and team meetings, mainly because as much as team like him, it seems they want to test him significantly in this process. He has some fans, but he’ll have to earn his draft selection in workouts.
As much as the NBA Draft has become about potential, there are still a large number of teams looking for players who can play or contribute right away and some of the more experienced guys in this draft that may not be superstars in five years are still drawing a lot of attention, especially from those just outside the lottery. Teams that need another player to bolster their playoff status for next season will seriously consider these guys.
Ready to play is not a curse, especially not in the mid-teens to twenties in this draft class.
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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