With the Final Four in college basketball set and ready to get underway this weekend in Phoenix, more and more draft hopefuls have either declared completely or have started to exit their college programs to get ready for the NBA Draft. Most of the expected field has stayed intact thus far with only Robert Williams from Texas A&M opting to forgo the draft this season. While there is still a lot of time for players to make their final decisions, it does look like the top tier players are at least going to test the waters.
There are some dates to keep front and center as the draft cycle gets underway:
The NBA Regular season ends on April 12. The annual Portsmouth Invitational is April 12 to April 15, and will feature college seniors who are draft hopefuls. April 23 is the Earl Entry Deadline by which all underclassmen who wish to declare for the 2017 NBA Draft must submit their names to the NBA. The NCAA requires all players wishing to return to school after “testing the waters” to do so no later than May 24th. The 2017 NBA Draft Combine is set for May 9 to May 14 in Chicago. The 2017 NBA Draft Lottery will be May 16, with the actual draft itself set for June 22 in New York.
So with that out of the way, let’s dive into my latest NBA Mock Draft:
There are a few notable trades to keep in mind as it pertains to where picks are currently projected, based on the NBA standings through games played on March 29.
The Boston Celtics have the right to swap picks with the Brooklyn Nets, who would currently hold the top overall pick if the standings hold true.
Philadelphia does have the right to swap picks with Sacramento, however, their pick is currently more favorable.
Sacramento gets the New Orleans Pelicans’ first pick as part of the DeMarcus Cousins trade—it is top three protected for the 2017 draft and would convey to the Kings based on the current standings.
Philadelphia is currently owed a first round pick from the Lakers, which is top-three protected. Based on the standings, it would not convey this year.
Chicago is owed a pick from Sacramento, which is currently top-10 protected. If Philadelphia passes on the swap rights on the pick, the pick would not likely convey to Chicago, based on the standings. This mock draft currently reflects the pick conveying to the Kings.
The Portland Trail Blazers will receive the Memphis Grizzlies’ first round pick for their role in the Mason Plumlee deal with Denver just before the deadline. Denver obtained the pick in the Timofey Mozgov trade with the Cavaliers in 2015.
The Brooklyn Nets will receive the Washington Wizards’ first-round pick as part of the Bojan Bogdanovic trade at the deadline.
The L.A. Lakers receive the Houston Rockets’ first-round pick as part of the Lou Williams trade to Houston at the trade deadline.
The Orlando Magic received the Los Angeles Clippers’ first-round pick as part of the Serge Ibaka deal with Toronto. The Raptors obtained the pick from the Milwaukee Bucks as part of the Greivis Vasquez trade in 2015. The Magic will receive the lesser of the two picks Toronto controls, the Clippers pick and their own. The Clippers pick is currently the least favorable.
The Utah Jazz will receive the Golden State Warriors’ pick from the Andre Iguodala salary dump that sent Andris Biedrins, Richard Jefferson and Brandon Rush to the Jazz to clear room to sign Iguodala in 2013.
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, @SusanBible @TommyBeer, @MokeHamilton , @jblancartenba, @Ben_Dowsett, @CodyTaylorNBA, @SpinDavies, @BuddyGrizzard, @JamesB_NBA, @DennisChambers_, and @Ben__Nadeau .
Make sure to follow Basketball Insiders on Twitter at @BBallInsiders.