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2017 NBA Consensus Mock Draft – Ver 7.0

With about a week until the 2017 NBA Draft, here is the latest Mock Draft from four perspectives.

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Each week, four of Basketball Insiders’ top writers break down the latest news and notes surrounding the 2017 NBA Draft.

Here is this week’s Mock and the Draft notebooks from each writer. Next week’s Consensus will feature the entire 60-picks of the 2017 NBA Draft.

Version 1.0 | 2.0 | 3.0 | 4.0 | 5.0 | 6.0

Joel’s Notebook:

This is the last one before the last one, which means I’m done experimenting and really am trying to get a sense of what could happen on draft night. I like the feel of this mock, but I’m glad I still have another week to really think about it.

Here’s what I feel good about: The top two picks being Fultz and Ball, something unexpected happening from picks 3-8. Ike Anigbogu in the lottery. Brooklyn making sneaky-good picks in the 20s. Portland trading away at least one of those three picks (hence my reticence to make one of those three picks a Euro stash). Ivan Rabb and Harry Giles as first-round picks, and Kyle Kuzma in San Antonio. Something about that just feels right.

Here’s what makes me nervous: Orlando taking Dennis Smith over Jayson Tatum. New York being the team that does the crazy thing from picks 3-8. Zach Collins falling to #14. Semi Ojeleye going that high. Juwan Evans in the first round, and the potential that Giles could drop quite a bit due to injury concerns and make all my mocks look silly.

Some other thoughts: Luke Kennard in Denver actually would be really fun, wouldn’t it? OG Anunoby is so good, but he’s hurt. I find myself wondering he slips down a little further than where I’ve had him for most of these mock drafts. Is Donovan Mitchell the surprise star in this class? I keep looking for who that guy will be and am struggling to do better. T.J. Leaf and Lonzo Ball, together again in Los Angeles would be an odd turn of Fortuna’s wheel, but that’s how the ball bounced in this mock.

Next week is a full 60-pick consensus mock draft, the first ever here at Basketball Insiders (in the Consensus format), and that’s where I’ll solidify my thoughts on some of these things. In the meantime, this mock will do. It’s getting closer.

Michael’s Notebook:

Kevin Durant’s free agent decision to sign with Golden State transformed the Warriors into an unbeatable dynasty, but don’t forget the organization built its core through the draft.

Stephen Curry was selected seventh overall in 2009, Klay Thompson was selected 11th overall in 2011, and Draymond Green was selected 35th overall in 2012.

Quite a contrast in comparison to players such as Andris Biedrins selected 11th overall in 2004, Ike Diogu selected ninth overall in 2005, Patrick O’Bryant selected ninth overall in 2006 and Anthony Randolph selected 14th overall in 2008.

The draft is crucial to building sustainable success. It’s the foundation of many great teams over the years.

San Antonio added a franchise superstar by selecting Tim Duncan first overall in 1997. The Spurs supplemented him by selecting Manu Ginobili 57th overall in 1999 and Tony Parker 28th overall in 2001. The Spurs won five titles during Duncan’s tenure.

The Cleveland Cavaliers selected Kyrie Irving first overall in 2011 and traded Andrew Wiggins, the top overall pick in 2014, to acquire Kevin Love and win the 2016 championship. The Boston Celtics traded draft picks and several young assets to acquire Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen to win the 2008 championship. The Los Angeles Lakers traded veteran Vlade Divac for Kobe Bryant, a teenager at the time, who became the face of the franchise for 20 seasons and won five championships.

Notice a pattern here? The draft is the foundation of several championship teams.

With that in mind, two teenagers projected as first-round picks are no longer featured in this week’s mock draft. Jonathan Jeanne has Marfan syndrome, a potentially career-ending disorder, which was first reported by The Vertical and Rodions Kurucs removed his name from the draft altogether.

While Markelle Fultz, Lonzo Ball and De’Aaron Fox headline the draft, don’t overlook the rest of the class in one of the deepest drafts in recent years.

Moke’s Notebook:

The biggest news impacting the draft over the past week was Jonathan Jeanne, who we learned to have Marfan Syndrome. The condition impacts the body’s connective tissue and is the same ailment that Baylor’s Isaiah Austin was learned to have prior to the 2014 NBA Draft. Austin wasn’t drafted, so we should expect the same fate for Jeanne, unfortunately. Jeanne was expected to be selected somewhere in the 20s, so his situation will certainly have a domino effect on team selecting outside of the lottery. The same should be said of Rodions Kurucs, the Latvian forward whose stock had been rising over the past few weeks. Kurucs had been connected to the Brooklyn Nets, Los Angeles Lakers and San Antonio Spurs over the course of this draft season, and at this point, it isn’t entirely clear to me why he withdrew.

At the top of the draft, it seems that we are knowing less about team’s intentions as the draw draws nearer, which is good for the teams exercising their picks and bad for us. The Sixers, to me, remain the most interesting team in the top three, as they have brought Malik Monk and De’Aaron Fox in for multiple workouts and are apparently torn between those two at the guard spot and Josh Jackson if they opt to select another front court player. I still believe the Sixers walk away with Monk, mainly because he’s the best fit. I’ve been told that the Suns would have a hard time passing on Fox if he is available to them at four, so the Kings-Sixers trade that we mentioned a few weeks ago is still a possibility. I still have Fultz and Ball going with the first two picks.

Luke Kennard, John Collins and Donovan Mitchell are players whose stock has risen over the past few weeks, with Mitchell having an opportunity to crack the top 10. Most of the movement in my mock this week comes as a result of some teams zeroing in on certain players and types, as well as the situations involving Jeanne and Kurucs.

This is the penultimate mock, but I don’t expect my projections in the top 10 to change drastically, at this point, we have a fair idea of where players are going to land, with Terrance Ferguson being the prospect that has the best chance of crashing the draft order.

Steve’s Notebook:

I made some pretty significant changes from my Mock Draft filed yesterday. As we get closer and closer to the actual draft on June 22, I continue to struggle with the idea of the Lakers leaving Lonzo Ball on the board at number two. While the Lakers have been fairly adamant, they have made no decisions and no promises to anyone, Ball still remains the second-best talent in the draft. However in talking to executives the gap between Ball and say, De’Aaron Fox, Josh Jackson or even Dennis Smith Jr, isn’t so great to make it a no-brainer decision like Markelle Fultz.

The Lakers are going to have Ball in for a second visit after wrapping up visits with Fox, Jackson, and Smith over the last week.

The 76ers are ramping up their workouts this week with visits from Fultz, Fox and Duke’s Jason Tatum. It is unlike Fultz is working out for anyone, rather he’ll simply meet with the team.

There are a few names to watch as the hype of the draft kicks into its next gear…

Malik Monk is getting a lot of love from teams in the 5 to 10 range. There is a sense he may be the Knicks guy at number eight if he is there. The Kings seems to be locked in on Fox, however, if he goes early the second option for the Kings might also be Monk. Teams like his all-around game, and while he’s not the traditional point guard player, there is a sense that he could be an attack guard in the NBA much like James Harden, Russell Westbrook and CJ McCollum have become. While no believes Monk is the next coming of any of those players, there is a sense that in the current NBA, Monk could thrive as a lead guard with the ball in his hands, while also having the ability to swing off the ball based on matchups.

Dennis Smith, Jr. has wowed virtually everywhere he’s been. He’ll host a Pro Day to help with what’s become a demanding workout schedule tomorrow in Raleigh. There are a number of trade down scenarios that have been kicked around, that focus on Smith, Jr. A number of teams are weighing deals at five, six and seven if the draft board plays out where Smith Jr. is there. It is unlikely Orlando moves the six, but if their target is genuinely FSU’s Jonathan Isaac (as many continue to suggest), moving down a few slots in exchange for value might make sense if they would pass on Smith Jr. and could still get Isaac.

Duke big man Harry Giles continues to be something of an enigma. There is a sense that his upside could be tremendous, but questions about his ceiling, his knees and his overall game at the next level have his stock all over the place. Like Thon Maker a year ago there are as many detractors from his draft value as supporters, but like Maker, he could go higher because of his potential especially for a team with lots of depth and options. Giles is very much a “house money” prospect; his range could be anywhere from 13 to 26.

A name to watch late in the first round is UNC’s Kennedy Meeks. While he’s not showing up on very many Mock Drafts, there is a sense the Toronto Raptors might be dialed in on him at 23. On the surface that doesn’t seem likely, but there is a narrative of the Raptors wanting to move on from Jonas Valanciunas to shed some contract money and with so little on the roster now in terms of rebounding stretch bigs, Meeks checks off a lot of boxes. The question becomes do the Raptors really need to draft him to obtain him?

If the Raptors are genuinely going to open the vault for free agents Kyle Lowry and Serge Ibaka, how does the team flesh out the roster with play-now players?

The Raptors have a history for reaching for exactly what they want in the draft, regardless of public opinion. Every year there is a guy that makes the draft world go nuts, could Meeks be that guy this year?

There are two names in the sleeper department to watch – Utah’s Kyle Kuzma and South Carolina’s PJ Dozier. Both have the resume of a second-round selection and both very well could end up there, but there is a growing sense that Kuzma could be gone early in the second, meaning if a team really wants him they may have to reach up in the late first round to grab him.

Dozier has his fans at the NBA level. Some have pegged him in the 40’s, but there is sense a few teams late in the first may scoop him up on potential, especially the teams with multiple picks late in the first.

Kuzma has crushed in workouts and really has done well in head to head, so of the two he may be the safest bet to go much earlier than expected.

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 seven years. Joel Brigham is a Senior NBA Writer and has covered the NBA for the last 12 years. Michael Scotto is a Senior NBA Writer for Basketball Insiders and has covered the NBA for the last seven years.

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Mock Drafts

NBA Daily: A New 2018 NBA Mock Draft – 2/13/18

With the NBA Trade Deadline passed, Basketball Insiders Publisher Steve Kyler turns focus toward the 2018 NBA Draft.

Steve Kyler

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Time To Focus On The Draft

With the NBA Trade Deadline out of the way, the next transactional window to watch becomes the 2018 NBA Draft; we’ll start dropping more Mock Drafts as we get closer, including our annual weekly Consensus Mock Draft.

There is something of a consensus starting to take shape in NBA circles on who the top 100 players truly are, although the range on players remains somewhat wide depending on who you talk to.

With all of that in mind, here is the latest Mock Draft:

Here are some of the pick swaps and how they landed where they are currently projected:

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 and based on the standings today would convey to Philadelphia.

The LA Clippers are owed the Detroit Pistons first-round pick in 2018 as a result of the Blake Griffin trade. The pick is top four protected and based on the current standings would convey.

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

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 is lottery protected and based on the current standings would convey.

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 not 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 LA Lakers are owed the Cleveland Cavaliers first-round pick as a result of Jordan Clarkson/Larry Nance Jr trade. The pick is top-three 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.

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, @BuddyGrizzard, @JamesB_NBA, @DennisChambers_, and @Ben__Nadeau .

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NBA Daily: The Top of The 2018 Draft Is Getting Crowded

The top of the projected 2018 NBA Draft is starting to get interesting, mainly because so many potential draft prospects are having incredibly dominant seasons.

Steve Kyler

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Things Are Getting Interesting

While the projected 2018 NBA Draft class doesn’t seem to have a future superstar sitting at the top of the board, there are potentially four players that are really looking the part of future NBA All-Stars and it’s making the top of the class very interesting.

Say what you want about stats, but there is little doubt that the numbers some of the top prospects are posting so far this season are pretty compelling.

Duke’s Marvin Bagley III is averaging 21.1 points per game to go with 10.9 rebounds. His 61.7 percent field goal average is impressive, especially when you consider he’s knocking in 34.6% of his three (9-26 on the season). Bagley has a 32.2 PER with a 64.6 True Shooting percentage and a 26.7 usage rate. In short, highly productive almost everywhere without having to own the basketball.

Arizona’s DeAndre Ayton is posting similarly ridiculous numbers, 19.5 points per game with 11.4 rebounds. His 61.7 percent from the field also comes with an impressive 30.4 percent three-point average (7-23 on the season). Ayton’s 32.3 PER is a nose higher than Bagley. He is also posting a whopping 65.6 True Shooting percentage with a 26.7 percentage usage rate. Again, highly productive in every way without being so ball-dominant to skew the numbers. Ayton hit the ground running at Arizona and really hasn’t had a bad game yet.

Oklahoma’s Trae Young has burst into the top-five discussion in a huge way. His 6’2 180-pound frame looks small on the court, but his game has been tremendous. Young is posting 28.7 points per game with a monster 10.4 assists per contest. He is grabbing 3.5 rebounds while shooting 48.5 percent from the field, 57.1 percent from two-point range and a scorching 41.1 percent from three (44 of 107 on the season). Young’s 38 PER is tops in all of college basketball. He has a 65.2 True Shooting percentage and a 36.1 usage rate. Unlike Bagley and Ayton, Young does control the ball, but that’s typical for an impact scoring point guard. He offsets the ball dominance with incredible assist numbers. He is also pretty spectacular to watch.

International phenom Luka Dončić is having a solid season in his own right, although his averages are lower because he doesn’t play the same volume of minutes as the NCAA collegiate prospects. In 26 games in both the Euroleague and the ACB, Dončić is posting 16.8 points, 5.7 rebounds and 4.3 assists per contest. He is shooting 48.4 percent from the field and 35.6 percent from international three (48 of 135 on the season). Dončić is posting a 28.2 PER in Euroleague play and a 23.7 PER in ACB play. Dončić’s True Shooting numbers in Euroleague play are impressive at 66.2 percent. In ACB play his number drop a bit to 58.1 percent. His usage numbers illustrate the same slip. In Euroleague play, he posts a 30 percent usage rate while posting a 26.6 percent usage rate in ACB. Dončić typically plays more minutes and a larger role in Euroleague play. Hence the stat shift. If you haven’t seen him play, he’s so instinctual and gifted it easy to see why many see him as the top pick.

There are some compelling storylines to watch towards the top of the NBA draft board, which is likely why so many NBA executives seem split on who they would peg as the top talent in the projected 2018 Draft class.

So, with that out the way, lets jump into the latest first-round 2018 NBA Mock Draft:

Here are some of the pick swaps and how they landed where they are currently projected:

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 and based on the standings today would convey to Boston.

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 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 not convey.

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 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.

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, @MikeAScotto, @LangGreene, @EricPincus, @joelbrigham, @TommyBeer, @MokeHamilton , @jblancartenba, @Ben_Dowsett, @SpinDavies, @BuddyGrizzard, @JamesB_NBA, @DennisChambers_, and @Ben__Nadeau .

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NBA Daily: Another 2018 NBA Mock Draft – 12/13/17

Basketball Insiders’ publisher Steve Kyler drops his latest 2018 first-round NBA Mock Draft.

Steve Kyler

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A little less than a month ago we dropped the first 2018 NBA Mock Draft, which was met with a lot of disdain. Which is often a good thing because it sparks the discussion in NBA circles.

Since that Mock dropped, we’ve seen a bit more play out of some of the top prospects and many of the assumptions made almost a month ago are starting to settle into place a little more clearly.

The prevailing thought from NBA scouts and executives is that the possible 2018 NBA Draft class has a lot more questions than answers. The common view is that outside of the top 3 or 4 players there could be a very wide range on who the next 10-12 players will be; so expect for the second tier to evolve a lot over the course of the college basketball season.

A couple of things have started to surface among NBA scouts and executives, there seem to be three camps emerging around the top overall player – Duke’s Marvin Bagley III and international phenom Luka Dončić, seem to be the leading names mentioned most, with Arizona’s DeAndre Ayton making a strong push into the discussion. We can safely call this a three-horse race at this point.

The prevailing belief is that none of the three is far and away better than the other as a professional prospect, making it more likely than not that the top player selected will have a lot more to do with which team ultimately lands the pick, more so than the player themselves.

This class also seems to be brimming with promising athletic point guards, which unlike last year’s draft, could provide a lot of options for teams still trying to find that impact point guard.

There also looks to be 27 players in the projected top 100 that are 6’10 or bigger, eight of which project in the top 30. To put that into perspective, there were 11 players 6’10 or bigger drafted in the first round of the 2017 NBA Draft, and 17 total in the 60 2017 NBA Draft selections.

As we get into the 2018 calendar year, we’ll start to do deeper dives into the tiers of players and their possible NBA strengths and weakness.

So, with all of that in mind, here is the second 2018 first-round NBA Mock Draft.

Here are some of the pick swaps and how they landed where they are currently projected:

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 Cleveland Cavaliers are owed the Brooklyn Nets first-round pick as a result of the Kyrie Irving trade this past summer.

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 not convey.

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 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 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 not 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.

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

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