Each week, four of Basketball Insiders’ top writers will break down the latest news and notes surrounding the 2016 NBA Draft. Included is an updated mock draft that reflects how each writer sees the draft landscape based on the latest news, workouts and information from the pre-draft process.
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Alex’s Notebook: This week, one of my big switches was having Skal Labissiere going No. 9 to the Toronto Raptors. Previously, I had Henry Ellenson in that spot, with Labissiere going No. 11 to the Orlando Magic. That could still happen – as the Magic do like Labissiere – but it just really seems like Skal is gaining momentum and could very seriously go top 10.
This weekend, Labissiere held his Relativity Sports Pro Day at the IMG Academy in Bradenton, FL. While the workout was limited to one-on-zero, he displayed his skill set and raised eyebrows. Twenty-three teams sent representatives to the Pro Day, and nearly 60 NBA personnel people were in the building.
Labissiere made an effort to show off his NBA range, doing plenty of drills that had him shooting from the three-point line and even a bit behind it. He shot the ball well, and also showed off some nice moves like a step-back and turn-around.
His athleticism and length are off the charts. Quite frankly, this is the kind of setting where Labissiere thrives because there isn’t competition. There’s nobody to take advantage of his thin frame and he isn’t in game situations.
While it seems crazy to draft a guy top 10 based on just seeing him thrive in that environment, it happens all the time in the NBA and it’s because teams are in love with potential. Skal has a very, very high ceiling, which can erase a lot of concerns in draft rooms.
Here is video of Labissiere’s workout, so you can see for yourself how he looked (and listen to him explain his development, Kentucky experience, weight issues and more):
Joel’s Notebook: Fun fact: Steve Kyler loves to call me on the drive home from draft workouts to tell me how things are going. After covering back-to-back pro days in Florida this past week, he told me something interesting he kept hearing from people he’d speak to at these events: “After the top two players in the draft, the rest of the first round is a dart board.” There’s nothing crazy, for example, about Marquese Chriss going in the top five. There’s nothing crazy about Skal Labissiere landing in the top 10. There’s nothing crazy about anybody going anywhere, and I’ve already got a feeling that there will be five or more players selected in the first round that completely blow us out of the water, so I tried to include a few of those guys in this mock.
All that said, knowing that literally anything could happen in this draft, it shouldn’t surprise any of us when certain players rise and others drop for seemingly no reason. In this mock, I pushed Chriss up to No. 6 since so many other mocks seem to have him on the rise and there’s almost always that one guy every year who does exactly that. Labissiere got a jump this week, too, mostly because there will come a point when teams are judging ceiling over floor, and Labissiere still does boast one of the highest ceilings in this draft class.
On the other hand, there’s Jaylen Brown, who fell all the way to Milwaukee at No. 10, which could very well be a godsend for both parties involved. Jakob Poeltl has tumbled a bit for the second week in a row for me, which I can’t really explain, and Zhou Qi almost fell out of the first round completely this week.
It’s hard to say how this will play out, but we know enough at this point to know that the draft will be exciting and unpredictable – as it should be.
Moke’s Notebook: It’s funny how sometimes it seems that we are running around in circles. Based on some intel I’ve gotten over the past week, my top 10 looks radically different from last week.
I remember entering this season, Ben Simmons was the name that popped up most frequently when people mentioned prospects with “game-changing” abilities, and as the season progressed, Brandon Ingram seemed to close that gap to the point where some people expected him to supplant Simmons as the top pick (and some did have that for a while, actually). However, as the weeks have progressed, all indications are that the Sixers are leaning toward Simmons and will eventually select him – and it’s difficult to second-guess that decision.
Where this draft is really getting interesting, though, is at number three. Ingram and Simmons will go first and second, in some order, but what the Celtics do at number three will have a domino effect across the remainder of the first round. Over the past week, I’ve been getting conflicting information about Dragan Bender. If a team, such as the Celtics, takes Bender at number three, they are selecting him more because of what they believe he can be. Buddy Hield and Kris Dunn, on the other hand, are perceived as known quantities. And while neither may seem to be a fit in Boston due to their roster, remember: we once had the same thoughts of Stephen Curry, whom the Warriors selected despite having Monta Ellis and a few other guards on that roster. All that being said, most mocks have the Celtics taking a big man, but with Evan Turner expected to command a hefty payday this summer, I would not at all be surprised to see them opt for a wing. In that regard, Jaylen Brown makes a lot of sense, especially considering the dearth of small forwards in the draft. So I have Brown going to the Celtics at number three with that selection causing a ripple effect in my top 10. With a few of these placements, I put players where I thought they made the most sense.
For the Suns specifically, Bender might make some sense considering the young talents the roster already has. It may make sense to swing for a homerun, especially with Devin Booker and Alex Len having shown some signs last season. The remainder of my top 10 just seems to fit for a number of reasons.
In the lottery, there seems to be a consensus as to who the top 15 players selected will be, but there is nothing close to a consensus with the latter half of the draft. That is especially true as it relates to some of the international prospects. I believe that DeAndre Bembry, Demetrius Jackson, Juan Hernangomez and Diamond Stone will each provide incredible value taken in the latter half of the draft. Where this entire thing will blow up is an instance when a team that has one pick decides to take a flier on an international prospect. Imagine the outcome if the Pistons opted to select either Petr Cornelie or Thon Maker? Imagine.
The good news, though, is that we are nearing consensus in some key areas of the draft. And all I keep hearing from those in the know is that there is incredible depth here in the class of 2016.
Steve’s Notebook: Over the past weekend, two Pro Days were held in South Florida – one in Miami with Elite Skills Training and the other at IMG Academy with Relativity Sports. There were 20 NBA teams present for the first workout in Miami and 23 at the IMG workout.
While the lottery-level guys showed what you would expect, there were a few surprises and a lot of rumor mongering going on among the executives.
The biggest surprise was Juan Hernangomez. While he did not play against anyone, he did put his skills on display and he was impressive. His range all the way around the NBA three-point line was stellar. His aggressiveness around the basket in pad-contact drills was excellent. In talking with his agents, Hernangomez does not have a buyout in his contract so he’s free to come to a NBA team right away if that’s the best plan. Hernangomez also said he’d be fine staying in Europe another year or two if that’s the best plan. His skill and flexible attitude may make him hard to pass up in a fairly flat draft class. He has also been listed in various places as a small forward, which is not at all accurate. He’ll be a power forward in the NBA.
As for draft scuttle, there is a sense that Vanderbilt’s Wade Baldwin may already have a draft commitment. More than one team questioned the validity of the “concussion” that kept Baldwin out of his Pro Day in Chicago. At this point in the process, everything is over analyzed so take that for what it’s worth.
The L.A. Clippers have told a few agents that they are trying to move up in the first round and have been trying to get higher rated players in for workouts. It’s unclear exactly how the Clippers would move up or what they even have to offer, but as things sit today the Clippers are drafting at 25. The Nuggets have the No. 15 pick, while Boston has the No. 16 pick – both are second selections for those respective teams, so those are worth watching. The Clippers are believed to be looking for a small forward, but that’s the thinnest position in this draft class.
One name that took a beating this weekend was Maccabi Tel Aviv’s Dragan Bender. Long considered the third-best prospect in the draft, more and more teams said they would not consider him with their pick, pointing to all kinds of issues either with his style of play, his overall skill set or simply a lack of belief that Bender would be a special NBA talent. If there is one guy in the mix at the top of the board who could have a long draft night, it might be Bender. This could be a case of trying to lower the expectation bar or the typical driving down of draft value, but the sense from executives in both gyms was that Bender may not be the guy in the top five.
Here are six guys on the way up:
- Oklahoma’s Isaiah Cousins. Cousins had some strong workouts and could be firmly in the mix in the 35-45 range.
- Oregon’s Elgin Cook. He just had pins removed from a broken finger and is ready to start NBA workouts. He was impressive in his Pro Day and a few scouts said they thought he was viable in the 45-55 range and were eager to get him in their gym.
- Maryland’s Diamond Stone. Not only has he changed his body pretty aggressively, he has been doing well in workouts. Stone could be a sneaky play at the bottom of the first, but more than a few executives said he’s more likely to be among the next wave drafted in the second round in the 30s.
- Washington’s Marquese Chriss. There are some who say Chriss may be the highest upside guy on the board. The Celtics are said to be very high on Chriss and that’s creating some interest and buzz from others. Chriss could legitimately go as high as 3 to the Celtics.
- Kentucky’s Skal Labissiere. His Pro Day wasn’t much more than a glorified shooting drill, but NBA executives in the stands still admitted there was too much talent there for him not to get drafted really high. The question for Skal is where? The Orlando Magic met with Skal minutes after his workout ended and most pundits believe 11 to the Magic is his floor. The problem with that is Skal is scheduled to meet with virtually everyone from the second pick down to eight and is not likely to workout for anyone outside that range. There are two spots his camp sees as promising: Four to the Phoenix Suns (who are literally playing with house money because of what’s on their roster now) and seven to the Denver Nuggets (who were on hand for the Pro Day as well). In the end, 11 might be the most realistic spot for Skal, but for now his camp believes there is enough interest in the top eight that he makes this list.
- Syracuse’s Malachi Richardson. While he did not make my top 30, his name continues to generate a lot of positive buzz, so much so it’s going to be hard to keep him out of the first round going forward. The problem is no one seems to have a feel for where he lands. Some mock drafts have him going 15 to the Nuggets or to the Hawks at 24, while some have him sliding into the early second round. Richardson is clearly worth watching and his stock seems to be on the rise.
NBA AM: The First 2018 NBA Mock Draft
With College Basketball getting underway and things starting to get interesting in the standings of the NBA, what better time to drop a 2018 Mock Draft than on Thanksgiving.
The Thanksgiving 2018 NBA Mock Draft
With College Basketball getting underway and things starting to get interesting in the standings of the NBA, what better time to drop a 2018 Mock Draft than on Thanksgiving.
So with that in mind here is my first Mock Draft of the 2018 Season, look for more of these are we march on (and hopefully you like the new Mock Draft table design.
The Cleveland Cavaliers are owed the Brooklyn Nets first-round pick as a result of the Kyrie Irving trade this summer.
The Phoenix Suns are owed the Miami HEAT’s first-round pick as part of the Goran Dragic trade in 2015, it is top-seven protected and would convey to Phoenix based on the current standings.
The Phoenix Suns are owed the Milwaukee Bucks first-round pick as part of the Eric Bledsoe trade. The pick only conveys if the Bucks pick lands between the 11th and 16th pick, which based on the standings today would convey.
The Minnesota Timberwolves are owed the Oklahoma City Thunder’s first-round pick as part of the Ricky Rubio trade this summer. The pick is lottery protected and based on the current standings would convey.
The Atlanta Hawks are owed the Minnesota Timberwolves first round pick as part of the Adreian Payne trade in 2015. The pick is lottery protected and based on the current standings would convey.
The Brooklyn Nets are owed the Toronto Raptors first round pick as part of the DeMarre Carroll salary dump trade this past summer. The pick is lottery protected and based on the current standings would convey.
The Atlanta Hawks are owed the Houston Rockets first round pick as part of a three-team deal with the LA Clippers and Denver Nuggets involving Danilo Gallinari and taking back Jamal Crawford and Diamond Stone. The pick is top-three protected and based on the current standings would convey.
More Twitter: Make sure you are following all of our guys on Twitter to ensure you are getting the very latest from our team: @stevekylerNBA, @MikeAScotto, @LangGreene, @EricPincus, @joelbrigham, @TommyBeer, @MokeHamilton , @jblancartenba, @Ben_Dowsett, @SpinDavies, @BuddyGrizzard, @JamesB_NBA, @DennisChambers_, and @Ben__Nadeau .
2017 NBA Consensus Mock Draft – Final
The Basketball Insiders Mock Draft team gives their final look at the 2017 NBA draft with an all-60 pick mock draft.
For the last eight weeks, we have been dropping weekly Mock Drafts leading up to this point – the final Consensus. The goal of these Mocks is to look at the draft from four different perspectives as we try to get to a Consensus on each pick. Some times we get there, sometimes we get close, and in the case of this draft sometimes we just don’t see things the same way.
This week’s Consensus (our final of the season) we are rolling out a first for us in this format – the entire 60-picks of the 2017 NBA Draft, enjoy.[DISCLAIMER – at this point in the cycle lots of picks trade hands and in order for us to deliver this kind of look, we may not be able to account for every trade that happens between the time our writers file their picks and when this item is posted. So, this mock is reflective of the picks as of 6:00am on 6/21]
2017 NBA Consensus Mock Draft - Final
|Pick #||Team||Joel Brigham||Michael Scotto||Moke Hamilton||Steve Kyler|
|1||Markelle Fultz||Markelle Fultz||Markelle Fultz||Markelle Fultz|
|2||Lonzo Ball||Lonzo Ball||Lonzo Ball||Lonzo Ball|
|3||Jayson Tatum||Jayson Tatum||Jayson Tatum||Jayson Tatum|
|4||Josh Jackson||Josh Jackson||Josh Jackson||Jonathan Isaac|
|5||De'Aaron Fox||De'Aaron Fox||De'Aaron Fox||De'Aaron Fox|
|6||Dennis Smith||Jonathan Isaac||Jonathan Isaac||Josh Jackson|
|7||Jonathan Isaac||Lauri Markkanen||Lauri Markkanen||Dennis Smith|
|8||Malik Monk||Malik Monk||Malik Monk||Malik Monk|
|9||Frank Ntilikina||Dennis Smith||Dennis Smith||Lauri Markkanen|
|10||Lauri Markkanen||Justin Jackson||John Collins||Donovan Mitchell|
|11||Donovan Mitchell||Frank Ntilikina||Donovan Mitchell||Luke Kennard|
|12||Luke Kennard||Luke Kennard||Frank Ntilikina||Zach Collins|
|13||OG Anunoby||OG Anunoby||OG Anunoby||OG Anunoby|
|14||Zach Collins||Zach Collins||Justin Jackson||John Collins|
|15||Justin Patton||John Collins||Ike Anigbogu||Harry Giles|
|16||John Collins||Jarrett Allen||Luke Kennard||Jarrett Allen|
|17||Justin Jackson||Ike Anigbogu||Jarrett Allen||Ike Anigbogu|
|18||Semi Ojeleye||Terrance Ferguson||Zach Collins||T.J. Leaf|
|19||Derrick White||Justin Patton||Justin Patton||Justin Jackson|
|20||D.J. Wilson||Jawun Evans||Harry Giles||Frank Ntilikina|
|21||Ike Anigbogu||Semi Ojeleye||T.J. Leaf||Bam Adebayo|
|22||Jarrett Allen||Harry Giles||Terrance Ferguson||Semi Ojeleye|
|23||Harry Giles||T.J. Leaf||Semi Ojeleye||Kennedy Meeks|
|24||Tyler Lydon||Donovan Mitchell||Isaiah Hartenstein||D.J. Wilson|
|25||Bam Adebayo||Isaiah Hartenstein||Anzejs Pasecniks||Jawun Evans|
|26||Isaiah Hartenstein||Tyler Lydon||Tyler Lydon||Ivan Rabb|
|27||Terrance Ferguson||Bam Adebayo||Jawun Evans||Terrance Ferguson|
|28||Tony Bradley||Ivan Rabb||D.J. Wilson||Caleb Swanigan|
|29||Anzejs Pasecniks||Anzejs Pasecniks||Mathias Lessort||Vlatko Cancar|
|30||Ivan Rabb||D.J. Wilson||Derrick White||Anzejs Pasecniks|
|31||Caleb Swanigan||Derrick White||Ivan Rabb||Kyle Kuzma|
|32||T.J. Leaf||Tony Bradley||Bam Adebayo||Tyler Lydon|
|33||Josh Hart||Jordan Bell||Caleb Swanigan||Isaiah Hartenstein|
|34||Kyle Kuzma||Caleb Swanigan||Alec Peters||Frank Jackson|
|35||Jonah Bolden||Wesley Iwundu||Frank Jackson||Dillon Brooks|
|36||Alec Peters||Mathias Lessort||Jordan Bell||Alec Peters|
|37||Thomas Bryant||Thomas Bryant||L.J. Peak||Derrick White|
|38||Jordan Bell||Frank Mason||Thomas Bryant||Jordan Bell|
|39||L.J. Peak||Jonah Bolden||Jonah Bolden||Mathias Lessort|
|40||Jawun Evans||Johnathan Motley||Dillon Brooks||P.J. Dozier|
|41||P.J. Dozier||Kyle Kuzma||Frank Mason||Justin Patton|
|42||Frank Jackson||Jaron Blossomgame||Tony Bradley||Jonah Bolden|
|43||Frank Mason||Alec Peters||Johnathan Motley||Devin Robinson|
|44||Sindarius Thornwell||Dwayne Bacon||Jonathan Jeanne||Thomas Bryant|
|45||Dillon Brooks||Josh Hart||Jaron Blossomgame||Tony Bradley|
|46||Devin Robinson||Frank Jackson||Sindarius Thornwell||Jaron Blossomgame|
|47||Jaron Blossomgame||Edmond Sumner||Tyler Dorsey||Josh Hart|
|48||Mathias Lessort||Sindarius Thornwell||Devin Robinson||Wesley Iwundu|
|49||Cameron Oliver||Dillon Brooks||Josh Hart||Alberto Abalde|
|50||Tyler Dorsey||Tyler Dorsey||P.J. Dozier||Luke Kornet|
|51||Wesley Iwundu||Vlatko Cancar||Vlatko Cancar||Aleksandar Vezenkov|
|52||Johnathan Motley||Monte Morris||Isaiah Hicks||Edmond Sumner|
|53||Alpha Kaba||Devin Robinson||Wesley Iwundu||L.J. Peak|
|54||Kobi Simmons||P.J. Dozier||Edmond Sumner||Alpha Kaba|
|55||Nigel Williams-Goss||Cameron Oliver||Aleksandar Vezenkov||George De Paula|
|56||Aleksandar Vezenkov||Alpha Kaba||Isaiah Briscoe||Ognjen Jaramaz|
|57||Damyean Dotson||Peter Jok||Cameron Oliver||Johnathan Motley|
|58||Isaiah Briscoe||Damyean Dotson||Nigel Williams-Goss||Nigel Williams-Goss|
|59||Dwayne Bacon||Kennedy Meeks||Antonio Blakeney||Frank Mason|
|60||Peter Jok||Kobi Simmons||Malcolm Hill||Sindarius Thornwell|
Finally, Steve Kyler took the leash off of us this week and let us do a full 60-pick mock. This is what freedom tastes like.
It’s time to make some final decisions this week, though, and I can tell you that having done so many mocks in so many contexts, it’s all starting to bleed together. I know who I like where at this point, and the nuggets of draft information that leak out amid all the free agency and trade rumors are enough to help solidify some things. Lonzo Ball at pick number two is the inevitability it always has been, apparently. Jayson Tatum looks like the Celtics’ guy at number three (if they keep the pick). That would mean Josh Jackson falls into the hands of Phoenix, and Sacramento gets their man in Fox at pick number five.
Of course, knowing the draft as well as I do, it’s 100 percent likely that some team in the top five messes with that order. That top five is incredibly reasonable, which is why it can never be. One trade, and the whole thing goes kablooey.
As far as the second round goes, this year’s crop feels like its rife with players who actually could contribute, which is rare. Caleb Swanigan, T.J. Leaf, Juwan Evans, Jordan Bell, Sindarius Thornwell and Frank Jackson all in the second round is nuts. Any one of those guys could be a good player for a number of teams, and they’ll get snatched up at a value in round number two.
The back end of the second round was tough, though. There are probably going to be about 20 percent more international guys drafted there than what I have at the moment, but I wanted to sneak in guys I liked, such as Dwayne Bacon and Isaiah Briscoe. We’ll see how it shakes out, but this is what I’m going with for now. It’s been a heck of a mock drafting season, folks, and it’s only going to get crazier over the next two days.
Markelle Fultz and Lonzo Ball will form a great rivalry for years to come, with both expected to be off the board after the first two picks.
As The Vertical reported, the Lakers will trade D’Angelo Russell to Brooklyn, which paves the way for Ball to bring “Showtime” back to Los Angeles and make his dad LaVar’s vision a reality. Boston’s Danny Ainge made a bold move trading down from the top overall pick and passing on Fultz. You can safely assume Fultz will circle every Celtics game on his calendar for the rest of his career.
At third overall, Ainge will choose between Jayson Tatum or Josh Jackson and the Suns will get the leftover player or De’Aaron Fox.
If Phoenix takes Fox, watch out for Eric Bledsoe to be traded on draft night. If Jackson is the pick, keep an eye on T.J. Warren to be dangled as trade bait.
Jonathan Isaac fits the prototype of Orlando Magic executives John Hammond and Jeff Weltman, who like long, athletic forwards and previously took big swings on Giannis Antetokounmpo and Bruno Caboclo.
The Timberwolves can dangle the seventh pick as part of a trade package for Jimmy Butler, a favorite of Tom Thibodeau.
The Knicks will likely choose from three guards: Dennis Smith, Malik Monk and Frank Ntilikina. The Mavericks will land one of those leftovers.
Afterward, more trade possibilities arise. Sacramento is open to moving the 10th pick. Detroit is looking for a veteran to help the team return to the playoffs and is open to moving the 12th pick. Portland has three first-round picks and will look to offload a bad contract with one of those picks. Utah is open to moving up using the 24th and 30th picks as trade bait. Orlando is in a similar position with the 25th, 33rd and 35th picks. Los Angeles is hoping to move the 27th and 28th pick as part of a trade package for Paul George according to reports.
In the second round, the Magic (2), Hawks (2), Knicks (2), Rockets (2), Nuggets (2), Suns (2), Jazz (2), Celtics (3) and 76ers (4) all have multiple picks. With that in mind, keep an eye on each of those teams to be involved in trade discussions or even sell some of those picks.
Remember, it only takes one blockbuster trade, an unexpected selection or medical red flag to change the entire draft landscape upside down.
This draft and upcoming free agency will be more exciting than the playoffs. The question is whether all the excitement will live up to the hype and produce another Finals contender besides the Cleveland Cavaliers to compete against the Golden State Warriors.
I have been covering the draft closely for the past four years and, without question, the 2017 draft is unique. The only thing that we know for sure at this point is that the Philadelphia 76ers are selecting Markelle Fultz and that the Los Angeles Lakers appear to have cleared the way to select Lonzo Ball with the second overall pick. As recently as Tuesday, there were some that were of the opinion that De’Aaron Fox was in play for them at number two, but considering the attention that they’ve given Ball and the lack of attention he’s given to other teams, it’s incredibly difficult to imagine a scenario where he’s not a Laker.
From there, the draft will only get more and more interesting.
Of all lottery-projected players, there seems to be the most mystery surrounding Frank Ntilikina. Some have projected him to go as early as eighth (to the New York Knicks), while some have opined that he could slip outside of the lottery, mainly because he’s a somewhat unknown quantity. And at the end of the day, “unknown” is a remarkably appropriate term. Alec Peters, Bam Adebayo and Devin Robinson are among the prospects who have had medical red flags attached to their names, so if any of those three slip, you’ll know why.
For me, that’s about all I have to say. My sources have been fairly consistent in what they’ve told me, and I believe my mock drafts have been fairly similar. At this point, I believe there will be one or two draft night trades, but the order in which players are picked, I believe, will not vary tremendously as a result. Scouts generally believe that there are five to eight potential future All-Stars in this crop, meaning that this draft should ultimately end up being one of the deepest in recent memory.
Keep your fingers crossed that your team gets one of those guys.
Oh boy, has this thing gotten interesting. The Lakers dumped the Timofey Mozgov contract and gave final closure to how the Magic Johnson Lakers viewed D’Angelo Russell in their deal to obtain Brook Lopez (and cap flexibility) and the 27th pick.
The Cavaliers have been active trying to add one more star to their roster. The Pacers have gotten serious in their quest to move Paul George, who is expected to be dealt by the end of the draft tomorrow.
The Atlanta Hawks moved on from Dwight Howard, and the Clippers have started kicking the tires on ways to improve in advance of free agency — and all that’s just what got done in the last 24 hours.
There is a lot of talk taking place, so keep in mind that NBA teams at this point in the cycle are talking daily and everyone is trying to decide what to do, not only in the draft but in the trade market surrounding it. Let’s dig into what’s floating around:
– The Knicks have opened the door on virtually everything. With pressure mounting in New York to turn the franchise around, Phil Jackson and his staff have entertained talks on the entire roster, including promising star Kristaps Porzingis. Before you get too far on this, league sources say the asking price on Porzingis is FOUR unprotected first round picks or a handful of unprotected picks and a proven star level player. It does not seem that the Knicks will get their price for Porzingis, but the Knicks have started down a dangerous path with their best building block. Word is this Porzingis camp was already sour on Phil Jackson and for him to actively shop him, it may destroy what little trust remained in the relationship.
– The Minnesota Timberwolves (seventh pick) and Detroit Pistons (12th pick) continue to be the teams mentioned most as likely to move their first-round picks. Both teams are believed to be looking for proven starting-caliber veterans rather than adding another young guy to the mix. The real value of those picks likely surfaces during the draft as players start to fall into place. Sources near both teams said they are absolutely prepared to select players with those picks, but they absolutely can be had in trade.
– Don’t expect the Jimmy Butler noise to die down anytime soon. The Bulls apparently decided over the weekend to actively listen on Butler trades, but sources near the situation say it will take a really good offer to get them to move Butler. The Cavaliers and Celtics have been mentioned most prominently in their pursuit of a Butler trade, but sources near the process say the Rockets and Wizards have logged interest in Butler and in Indiana’s Paul George. Depending on who you talk to in NBA circles, some believe Butler will be moved, while others doubt the Bulls get offered enough to do a deal by the end of the draft. The stance everyone takes is that Butler will be expensive to obtain in trade and the Bulls may not get enough to make a deal. The Bulls were also reportedly notified that Dwayne Wade will opt into his final contract year, which may influence what the Bulls ultimately do with Butler. Once Wade officially opts in, he too could be traded, but there is a sense the Bulls may take another run with this group and deal Butler next season, either at the deadline or after the 2017-18 season plays out.
Some players to watch as the draft plays out:
There are mixed reviews on Gonzaga bigman Zach Collins. While he is viewed as having a tremendous ceiling, several teams who saw him think he is too raw to be a rotation player as a rookie, meaning if he does not go early to a team that’s building and has minutes to groom him, he could slip in the draft.
There is increased talk that if Josh Jackson does not go number three to Boston, he could slide pretty hard. His camp has played the draft process very deliberately. He did not attend the NBA Draft Combine so teams have not seen medical on him. He has also declined workouts with a number of situations, which could make this a tough process if he does not go where his camp expects him to go.
Utah’s Kyle Kuzma continues to be a name some talk about a likely selection in the 20’s. Kuzma did very well in the draft workout process. The question is, where will he really land?
Looking for the reach of the draft? Could be Vlatko Cancar. There are lots of fun stories floating around about his abrupt departure from KK Mega Leks after just eight games. Some wonder if he got a promise early in the process and shut it down.
Basketball Insiders will be on the ground in New York through the entire 2017 NBA Draft process, so stay tuned for video from the media availabilities. Instant reaction to all the picks and our minute-by-minute Draft Day Diary – featuring all of the news, rumors and trades updated throughout the day. All of the draft news worth knowing in one easy to find place,
NBA AM: Final Mock Of The 2017 NBA Draft
Steve Kyler delivers his final 60-pick Mock Draft, as well as the latest news on the draft front.
The Final Mock Of The 2017 NBA Draft
So, it comes down to this. While there will surely be some changes between today and the actual draft on Thursday, here is my final Mock Draft of the 2017 NBA Draft season. It reflects all 60-picks and how I see it playing out based on the latest from around the NBA.
We are hearing from NBA teams that this draft class may have the most medical red-flags of any in recent history. Most of them are subjective, meaning teams have to come to grips with the risks involved, which may drive the perceived stock of a player down pretty dramatically.
A medical red-flag is something that surfaced during the physical that is of material concern. These often prompt teams to consider the situation more thoroughly and make a decision on the medium and long-term impact of the ailment. It does not immediately mean a player won’t be drafted, but does change the valuation of a player.
This draft could see a considerable amount of volatility, especially outside the top 1o selections. There is a sense that Detroit at seven, Minnesota at 12 and the Blazers at 15, 20 and 26 are all open to moving one or, in Portland’s case, more of their picks. The Pistons and Wolves are said to covet proven veterans more so that youth, although both are said to have plans to draft a player if they cannot find a deal.
The LA Lakers and New York Knicks are both said to be buyers on additional first round picks. The Cavaliers and the Rockets are also believed to be open to buying into the later part of this draft, which should make things interesting.
With so many picks in the second round belonging to the same group of teams – Denver, Philadelphia and Utah – there is a sense all of them would be open to packing together picks to move up or move out of some of them in the 2nd round.
Philadelphia has a bit of problem with their picks, as they have received in trade nearly the maximum amount of cash a team can receive in a single season. In other words, they won’t have the option of just selling picks for cash; they must make physical trades. This will get tough for them especially as they get in the mid-40s.
The Pre-Draft Basketball Insiders Podcast
Basketball Insiders publisher Steve Kyler and Senior NBA Writer Michael Scotto get into the 76ers and Celtics trade, the Lonzo Ball and Lakers situation, Paul George and the mess the Pacers find themselves in, the future of Gordon Hayward, some NBA draft sleepers, the guys whose draft stock could be falling, where certain players’ floor may be and who is and is not likely to be traded around the 2017 NBA Draft.
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