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Mock Drafts

2016 NBA Mock Draft: Final Consensus

The 2016 NBA Draft is Thursday. Basketball Insiders’ experts give their final consensus mock draft.

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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.

With the NBA Draft tomorrow, here is the final look at the 2016 NBA Draft.


Version 1.0
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Alex’s Notebook: Around this time of year, there’s a lot of misinformation flying around. Not only will teams go to great lengths to hide which players they like, there are also some teams who will leak stuff about a prospect’s injury or off-court issue in hopes that they can get draft him.

This year, a number of injuries have been reported, but it remains to be seen how they will affect the draft’s first round.

Some teams are reportedly concerned about Denzel Valentine’s right knee and how it could impact the longevity of his career. He never missed a game in college due to his right knee – and he only missed four games in four years at Michigan State – but an MRI apparently scared some people around the league. But will this affect Valentine’s draft stock? He was previously being discussed as a potential lottery pick.

Malik Beasley’s stress fracture surgery in his right leg happened right after the season and sources have said the reason he limited his workouts is actually because he has a promise with a mid-first team that has an attractive situation. He received a green-room invite, so don’t be surprised if we hear his name sooner than initially expected.

Tyler Ulis is undersized, but he’s a very skilled point guard and he has a lot of fans around the NBA. So it remains to be seen whether the hip issue that has been discussed is legitimate or something teams are using in hopes that he slips. Kentucky head coach John Calipari has campaigned for Ulis and said that he doesn’t believe the rumors about a hip injury.

Some reports indicated that Stephen Zimmerman was red-flagged medically, but sources close to Zimmerman shot that down and have no idea where it’s coming from. It could be that a team has Zimmerman in their sights.

This may seem like an awful thing to do to a young kid just trying to achieve his dream of playing in the NBA, but some teams (and agents) will go to great lengths to affect draft boards. Be careful what you believe around this time of year.

Joel’s Notebook: The final mock draft is always the most important one, because we’re supposed to have learned our lessons from two months of making predictions. Honestly, though, the best part about the draft is that nobody really has a firm grasp on what is actually going to happen.

But I have watched the draft literally every year since I was 12 years old, and I made some picks in this final mock draft based on things I’ve known teams to do. Brice Johnson at No. 20 to Indiana does not, on the surface, seem to make a whole lot of sense, but Indiana keeps their cards very close to their chest and is not afraid to pick guys ahead of where they’re technically “supposed” to go. See Tyler Hansbrough, for example, or Solomon Hill. Johnson might not be the pick, but I wouldn’t be shocked to be shocked by who Indy ultimately goes with.

I’ve got Milwaukee taking the long, athletic big in Skal Labissiere, even though Henry Ellenson would be a perfectly-scripted selection from them right there because they’ve made a habit of collecting long, athletic bigs the last several years with a reasonable measure of success.

I’m also predicting that Boston will not be able to trade the No. 3 pick and will have to just settle for snagging a player who can help them immediately. They’ve got point guards for days, but there really isn’t anyone like Jaylen Brown on the roster yet. I think he’ll end up being the guy. My gut tells me Phoenix is snagging a guard at No. 4, Minnesota would screech with delight if Jamal Murray was still there at No. 5 and Dragan Bender in Toronto at No. 9 would be fascinating.

Jakob Poeltl dropped in just about every mock draft that I did this year, and I’m not sure why. I’m not low on him, but I guess I just see the league moving away from that more traditional center and I wonder how it will affect his stock. Chicago would be a nice fit for him should he fall that far.

And in Philadelphia, with a regime change in the front office, it wouldn’t be surprising for them to take the most accomplished young players possible. Ulis and Prince fit that mold perfectly.

Enjoy the draft on Thursday and, as we do with all my predictions, let’s look forward to chiding me for how many of them I will have gotten wrong by then. Even still, it’s my favorite night of the NBA year. Right or wrong, it’s showtime.

Moke’s Notebook: In short, after the first two picks, my top 10 looks radically different from last week, which, frankly, shouldn’t come as much of a surprise. Personally, I think if Danny Ainge is going to exercise the third overall pick for the Boston Celtics, Jaylen Brown is the right fit. However, after learning that the Celtics have been trying (albeit unsuccessfully) to move their third overall pick, I’m inclined to think that Ainge would select Kris Dunn with, mainly because Dunn has done the most to boost his perceived value over the course of the pre-draft process. While some teams are high on Dragan Bender, I think he is too much of a risk for Ainge to roll the dice on at number three.

If Bender gets past the Phoenix Suns at number four (which I think he will), then I’d think he would slide a bit. With Ricky Rubio and Eric Gordon each having uncertain futures with their respective franchises, I see the Timberwolves and Hornets selecting Buddy Hield and Jamal Murray in some order, and I think I’m in the minority of having Skal Labissiere being selected inside of the top 10. After having Jalen Brown going to the Celtics at third last week, I have him being picked up by the Kings at number eight, which I think would be a win-win situation for both the player and the franchise.

For the past few weeks, I have been hearing that Malachi Richardson has done a lot to help his draft stock, so he is probably the biggest surprise for me in the final round of mock drafts. I wouldn’t expect him to get past the Clippers at number 25 if he is still on the board, but I think he goes before then.

As always, this entire process has been full of smokescreens and intrigue, but that’s a part of the game. There are a lot of intriguing prospects in this draft class and I think a few years from now, we will look back at it and realize that there are many quality players who entered the league in 2016. I can’t remember a draft having this much intrigue after the top two picks in recent years, as there doesn’t even seem to be a consensus top five heading into draft night.

In the end, there is a lot of talent in this draft, both at the top and the bottom. And either way, your team is likely to walk away from here with a quality piece or two.

Steve’s Notebook: Draft day is upon us and while many things are starting to fall into place at the top of the draft, there are still as many questions as answers in the middle and the bottom.

The annual green-room invite list answers some questions because historically, the largest majority of guys drafted early in the draft are in the room when drafted.

The fact that notable guys like Baylor’s Taurean Prince, high school sensation Thon Maker and Notre Dame’s Demetrius Jackson were not invited likely signals all three go lower than we have projected for most of this process. But it’s always possible one of them get drafted out of sequence. Last year, the Boston Celtics took Terry Rozier fairly high compared to his pre-draft stock; anything is possible on draft day.

There are a few names to watch in the mid-to-late first round. Oklahoma’s Isaiah Cousins continues to be a hot name among NBA talent evaluators and is in the running for a spot late in the first. Maryland’s Diamond Stone still seems to be hovering around the late 20s on some team’s draft boards.

On the flip side, the general consensus is that Kentucky guard Tyler Ulis may slide into the second round. UNC’s Brice Johnson still does not seem like he has a first-round home yet, although its possible he gets scooped up with a team’s second selection making him a possibility for Boston, Phoenix or Philadelphia – although it seems if the 76ers can’t package their picks in the 20s, they may swing for the international fences with both picks and defer those players into next season and beyond.

And lastly, there’s the Boston Celtics. On the eve of the NBA Draft, the Celtics are still trying to swing a deal for a significant veteran. The C’s are believed to have made recent runs at Chicago’s Jimmy Butler, Milwaukee’s Khris Middleton as well as making calls on Cleveland’s Kevin Love.

If the Celtics cannot find a deal, there is a better than average chance they will draft Kris Dunn from Providence – and trade him later in the draft (possibly to the Minnesota Timberwolves and extract a veteran player out of the Wolves).

The Celtics seem to be the team that holds the keys to how this draft will play out and they are a huge wild card in the process.

Make sure to check the 2016 NBA Draft Diary for all the latest news, rumors and deals. It’s updated throughout the day all the way up to the draft. If something is happening, you’ll find it all in one place. Bookmark it and check in often.

 

Who are these guys anyway? Steve Kyler is the Publisher of Basketball Insiders and has covered the NBA for the last 18 seasons. Alex Kennedy is the Managing Editor of Basketball Insiders and has covered the NBA for the last nine years. Moke Hamilton is a Senior Writer for Basketball Insiders and has covered basketball for the last six years. Joel Brigham is a Senior NBA Writer and has covered the NBA for the last 11 years.

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Mock Drafts

2018 NBA Consensus Mock Draft – Ver 4.0

Each week, four of Basketball Insiders’ experts take a look at the draft class and weigh in on what they are seeing and hearing in the march up to the 2018 NBA Draft.

Basketball Insiders

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Each week, four of Basketball Insiders’ top writers will break down the latest news and notes surrounding the 2018 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.

Version: 1.0 | 2.0 | 3.0

Moke’s Notebook: One thing I can say for sure is that this is the most unpredictable draft I’ve seen in many years. The Kings and Hawks are each rumored to be open to moving the second and third pick in the draft, and I have a feeling that’s due to the intrigue surrounding Luka Dončić. At this point, the expectation is that the Suns will select DeAndre Ayton first, and I get the sense that there are many that believe that the risk of selecting Dončić is too great. Aside from that, Michael Porter, Jr. (whom I’ve been told is the “dream” scenario for the Knicks) and Mo Bamba each saw their stock rise pretty dramatically during the Combine in Chicago. I’ve seen some mocks having Porter as highly as third.

Aside from those two, there are a lot of questions about Trae Young. It was once thought that Stephen Curry and even Kevin Durant weren’t strong enough to make it in the NBA, and similar questions have been asked of Young. Between Dončić, Bamba, Porter and Young, we might be looking at four of the biggest risks that are consensus top seven picks in quite some time. Of the batch, I’d feel most comfortable selecting Bamba, whose maturity and outside shooting are both better than advertised, but again, with teams at the top willing to discuss dealing their picks and the appetite for risk playing a major role in how the draft shakes out, I only have confidence in my top seven, not necessarily where they’ll land.

As we get closer to the draft, I’d keep an eye on a few names: Aaron Holiday, Jalen Brunson and Donte DiVincenzo. Each of those guys have a shot to move up into the late teens, with Holiday, in particular, having lottery potential. Keita Bates-Diop and Jevon Carter are two second rounders who I wouldn’t be surprised to see sneak into the top 30, either.

Over the coming weeks, some guys will be called in for more individual workouts and as the weeks progress, our intel will get stronger.

Jesse’s Notebook: Though the NBA Lottery and Combine are behind us, there are still a lot of questions about how things will shake out on draft night. While Luka Dončić has been considered a consensus top-two pick for some time, some are now questioning whether he will drop a spot or two. I still believe that by draft night, Dončić will likely be picked either first or second, but that doesn’t seem to be a foregone conclusion anymore.

The mystery man of this year’s class continues to be Michael Porter Jr. Porter Jr. checks off all of the boxes for a top-tier draft prospect, but his injury history and long-term health are still major issues that teams need to consider. No one in the draft has a larger range of outcomes. Porter Jr. recently said at the Combine that he is the best player in the draft and it will only take one team with a top pick to agree with his assessment to roll the dice and take a shot on him. But if it looks like his athleticism or burst is limited because of his previous injuries, he could drop toward the end of the top-10.

As of now, there is a good sense of who will be picked with the top 15 picks or so. Once we get outside of that range, things become somewhat less clear. There is very little consensus on how teams will draft from 16-30, so I expect the upcoming workouts and other pre-draft processes to help add clarity on that front.

Benny’s Notebook: Since Basketball Insiders’ last set of Notebooks, much of the draft landscape has changed. From lottery leaps to combine crushers, we’re finally at the point in the process where things start to happen. I still believe Luka Dončić is this draft class’ best player — he literally won both the EuroLeague MVP and Final Four MVP this weekend — but we must deal with the reality that Phoenix (and perhaps others) may look elsewhere. Outside of swapping No. 1 and 2, most of my adjustments come in the lower half of the first round.

I’d banked high on Mitchell Robinson showing out at the Draft Combine and, instead, he pulled out of everything completely. Allegedly, this is because Robinson has earned a promise from the Los Angeles Lakers at No. 25, according to Aran Smith of NBADraft.net. So, with little else to go off of on Robinson, he slides for me. Additionally, after the strange week of Dennis Schröder news, it’s possible that the Atlanta Hawks could search for a future guard — and the stock-rising Aaron Holiday certainly fits the bill.

Lastly, I’ve begun to come around on Zhaire Smith, the 6-foot-5 prospect from Texas Tech that averaged 11.3 points and five rebounds per game. In the modern, positionless NBA, Smith can already guard multiple spots and his athletic abilities have been rated at the top of his class. He may need some G-League time next season, but he turns just 19 years old in early June. While he probably won’t rise much higher than I’ve had him in mocks thus far, he makes sense for plenty of rebuilding rosters.

Steve’s Notebook: With the official NBA Draft Combine in the books there has been a lot of draft chatter. While it’s important to state clearly that its still very very early in the process and lots of things can change, there is a sense at least in a few places where some teams seem to be heading and where some players might end up landing.

The Phoenix Suns did land the top overall pick, and there was almost no executive in Chicago who thought Arizona big man DeAndre Ayton wouldn’t be Phoenix’s pick. While there is real validity to the idea that new Suns head coach Igor Kokoškov has experience and a relationship with euro sensation Luka Dončić, the belief is the Suns will make their decision based on talent, not relationship.

There was also a buzz that both Sacramento and Atlanta seemed more interested in the domestic big men available at the top of the draft rather than Dončić. That could always change, but the thought process there was the risk that Dončić could opt to stay out of the draft if he didn’t like where he would land, and both teams seem to be higher on other players.

There were a few players who clearly had fans among NBA talent evaluators.

Duke’s Wendell Carter Jr, could go significantly higher than expected with Dallas being his likely ceiling. The Mavericks are far from locked in on anyone, but the belief is the Mavericks are looking at versatile bigs.

Kentucky’s Kevin Knox was something of a mystery in Chicago opting to do very little publicly and left town early. According to several teams, Knox could go as high as six to Orlando and has strong interest from the Bulls, Cavaliers, and Knicks.

UCLA’s Aaron Holiday is said to have a “soft” commitment in the late teens and has, at this point, turned away workouts with teams in the 20’s. There is a sense he could be gone before by the 19th pick.

Boise State’s Chandler Hutchison pulled out of the Combine with NBA Draft.net’s Aran Smith tweeting that he is believed to have gotten a commitment from the Chicago Bulls at 22. Smith also tweeted that Mitchell Robinson also got a promise from the Lakers at 25. One veteran executive labeled this draft class as being the most aggressive draft he can recall where agents were calling and pressing for commitments.

Villanova’s Donte DiVincenzo wowed athletically during combine testing and several executives before the testing sessions not only nailed where he’d measure and perform, they also suggested he’d be gone in the 20’s.

Executives were especially critical of the two notable international prospects Dzanan Musa and Rodions Kurucs, suggesting that both could slide into the second round.

IMG Academy’s Anfernee Simons has several fans, but the word on him is that he’s a long-term project that would need time. There was a considerable amount of fact-finding by scouts on Simons. A team to watch could be Orlando if Simons is there is there when the Magic select at 35 or 41.

Tulane’s Melvin Frazier came away with mixed reviews, some love his length and athleticism and see him as a defensive presence, other teams saw him as lacking defined NBA skill sets.

Maryland’s Kevin Huerter has some fans. One executive offered a friendly wager that Huerter would be gone by 40.

West Virginia’s Jevon Carter looks like he has a real shot to be drafted in the first round, with several teams at the bottom of draft expressing real interest.

There are a couple of sleeper types that seemed to have turned some heads through the process in Chicago, namely Kansas’ Udoka Azubuike, Louisville’s Ray Spalding, Dayton’s Kostas Antetokounmpo and West Virginia’s Sagaba Konate. All of them could go significantly higher than currently projected.

Who are these guys anyway? Steve Kyler is the Publisher of Basketball Insiders and has covered the NBA for the last 19 years. Moke Hamilton is a Deputy Editor and Columnist for Basketball Insiders and has covered basketball for the last eight years. Jesse Blancarte is a Senior NBA Writer and Deputy Editor for Basketball Insiders and has covered the NBA for the last four years. Benny Nadeau is an NBA Writer and finished his first season covering the NBA for Basketball Insiders.

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, @LangGreene, @EricPincus, @joelbrigham, @TommyBeer, @MokeHamilton , @jblancartenba, @Ben_Dowsett, @SpinDavies, @JamesB_NBA, @DennisChambers_, @mike_yaffe, @MattJohnNBA, and @Ben__Nadeau .

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Mock Drafts

NBA Daily: 2018 60-Pick NBA Mock Draft – 5/22/18

The final 2018 NBA Draft order is set and Basketball Insiders’ publisher Steve Kyler offers up his latest 60-pick NBA Mock Draft.

Steve Kyler

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Lots of Draft Movement

With the draft order now set for the 2018 NBA Draft, there is some sense of how the draft might play out.

The buzz coming out of the NBA Draft Combine in Chicago is that a number of picks could be had in trade include all three of the top selections. Word is the initial asking price is very high and more of an indication to the San Antonio Spurs that if they do want to part with disgruntled star Kawhi Leonard, they are open for business.

It’s also worth noting that there is a growing sense that both the Sacramento Kings and Atlanta Hawk may be far higher on some of the domestic bigs in the draft more so than euro sensation Luka Dončić. Both teams are expected to take a long look at Dončić, so their views on him could change as we get closer to the draft, but for now, Dončić may go lower.

Here is the latest 60-Pick NBA Mock Draft, reflecting the final draft order and the latest buzz, rumors, and intel from in and around the NBA:

Dates To Know:

The NCAA requires all players wishing to maintain their college eligibility, without penalty, to withdraw from the NBA Draft by 11:59 pm on May 30. That is an NCAA mandated date, not related to anything involving the NBA, and that notice must be delivered in writing.

The NBA’s draft withdrawal date is June 11 by 5:00 pm ET. The NBA’s date allows a prospect to remain NBA draft eligible for future NBA drafts and is not related to any NCAA rule or date. There are ways for college players that did not accept benefits to return to college. However, they may be subject to NCAA penalties.

The 2018 NBA Draft is June 21.

The Pick Swaps:

The Cleveland Cavaliers are owed the Brooklyn Nets’ first-round pick as a result of the Kyrie Irving trade this past summer. The Brooklyn Nets traded several unprotected picks to Boston as part of the Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce trades in 2015.

The Philadelphia 76ers are owed the LA Lakers’ 2018 Draft pick, unprotected, as a result of the 2012 Steve Nash trade with the Suns. The Suns traded that pick to the 76ers as part of the Michael Carter-Williams three-team trade with the Milwaukee in 2015. The 76ers traded that pick to the Boston Celtics as part of the draft pick trade that became Markelle Fultz before the draft; it has 2 through 5 protections. This pick will convey.

The LA Clippers are owed the Detroit Pistons first-round pick in 2018 as a result of the Blake Griffin trade.

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 final NBA standings.

The Phoenix Suns were owed the Milwaukee Bucks’ first-round pick as part of the Eric Bledsoe trade. The pick would only convey if the Bucks pick landed between the 11th and 16th pick, which based on the final NBA standings did not convey. The Suns will now receive the Bucks 2019 first-round pick assuming it falls between the fourth and 16th pick.

The Atlanta Hawks are owed the Minnesota Timberwolves’ first-round pick as part of the Adreian Payne trade in 2015. The pick was lottery protected and would convey to Atlanta based on the final NBA standings.

The Minnesota Timberwolves are owed the Oklahoma City Thunder’s first-round pick as part of the Jazz/Wolves Ricky Rubio trade this past summer. The Jazz acquired the pick as part of the Thunder’s deal to obtain Enes Kanter in 2015. The pick was lottery protected and would convey based on the final NBA standings.

The Chicago Bulls are owed the New Orleans Pelicans first-round pick as a result of the Nikola Mirotic trade. The pick was top-five protected and based on the final NBA standings would convey

The LA Lakers are owed the Cleveland Cavaliers first-round pick as a result of Jordan Clarkson/Larry Nance Jr. trade. The pick was top-three protected and based on the final NBA 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 was lottery protected and based on the final NBA 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 was top-three protected and based on the final NBA standings would convey

Check out the Basketball Insiders’ Top 100 NBA Draft Prospects – http://www.basketballinsiders.com/top-100-nba-draft-prospects/

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, @LangGreene, @EricPincus, @joelbrigham, @TommyBeer, @MokeHamilton , @jblancartenba, @Ben_Dowsett, @SpinDavies, @JamesB_NBA, @DennisChambers_, @mike_yaffe, @MattJohnNBA, and @Ben__Nadeau .

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Mock Drafts

2018 NBA Consensus Mock Draft – Ver 3.0

Each week, four of Basketball Insiders’ experts take a look at the draft class and weigh in on what they are seeing and hearing in the march up to the 2018 NBA Draft.

Basketball Insiders

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2018 NBA Consensus Mock Draft – Ver 3.0

Each week, four of Basketball Insiders’ top writers will break down the latest news and notes surrounding the 2018 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.

With the 2018 NBA Draft Lottery final, here is how they see the field:

Version: 1.0 | 2.0

The weekly NBA Draft notebooks will resume next week following the NBA Draft Combine.

Who are these guys anyway? Steve Kyler is the Publisher of Basketball Insiders and has covered the NBA for the last 19 years. Moke Hamilton is a Deputy Editor and Columnist for Basketball Insiders and has covered basketball for the last eight years. Jesse Blancarte is a Senior NBA Writer and Deputy Editor for Basketball Insiders and has covered the NBA for the last four years. Benny Nadeau is an NBA Writer and his first season covering the NBA for Basketball Insiders.

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, @LangGreene, @EricPincus, @joelbrigham, @TommyBeer, @MokeHamilton , @jblancartenba, @Ben_Dowsett, @SpinDavies, @JamesB_NBA, @DennisChambers_, @mike_yaffe, @MattJohnNBA, and @Ben__Nadeau .

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