Suns Still Fighting Despite Down Season
Although the record for the Phoenix Suns doesn’t necessarily reflect it, the players inside the locker room are still showing plenty of fight. They’re buying into the new system created by interim head coach Earl Watson, and their play on the court is beginning to show that.
The Suns have posted one of the worst records in the league up to this point at 17-46. They find themselves with the third-worst record in the NBA, behind only the Philadelphia 76ers and Los Angeles Lakers.
This was supposed to be a team that challenged for a playoff berth this season. With a promising core of Eric Bledsoe, Brandon Knight, Alex Len and Devin Booker – with veterans like Tyson Chandler, P.J. Tucker, Sonny Weems and Mirza Teletovic among others – it’s easy to see how such a talented group could have been in the hunt for the postseason.
Instead, the Suns are just 9-37 since the beginning of December after jumping out to a decent 8-9 start. There was turmoil within the system among players, and their head coach was fired at the beginning of February.
Watson was appointed head coaching duties shortly after Jeff Hornacek was fired. He’s well respected around the league from his time as a player, and was even hired in an attempt to persuade LaMarcus Aldridge to join Phoenix in free agency last summer. Aldridge obviously chose to sign with the San Antonio Spurs instead, but seriously considered the Suns.
Phoenix is just 3-11 with Watson in charge, but it’s clear that the team is beginning to look ahead to next season. The team is trying to change a losing culture over the past several years, and it appears to be working even though their record doesn’t reflect it. It remains to be seen whether Watson will be the guy to lead that charge, but he’s operating as if it’s his job for the taking.
Watson is trying to instill an edge in his players over the remainder of the season. He spoke very highly of Orlando Magic head coach Scott Skiles on Friday night. Watson was a big fan of Skiles from his time as a player, and he loves the way his teams have always resembled how Skiles performed as a player.
Skiles was known to have been a grit-and-grind type of player who never backed down. Watson wants his guys to play with that sort of edge that Skiles displayed, and it seems that philosophy is beginning to resonate with the team.
“It takes a while when you’re going through a coaching change to really understand the philosophy,” Chandler said. “Guys are buying in. We’ve been so banged up, but I feel like guys are definitely buying in. That’s the most important part for any team. [From] the most successful teams [to] the teams at the bottom of the league, if you’re not buying in, it doesn’t matter the type of talent that you have.”
Two of Watson’s three wins have come within the last two games. The Suns dominated the Magic on Friday night en route to a 102-84 win, and they’re coming off of an impressive 109-100 win over the Memphis Grizzlies last night. It’s the first two-game win streak for the Suns since wins over the Chicago Bulls and Magic back on December 7-9.
The Suns were in control for nearly the entire game on Friday night, and seemed to be playing with that edge that Watson and his staff wanted. Chandler set the tone early during the game after picking up a flagrant foul with a few minutes left in the first quarter. There seemed to be some chippiness between the two teams following that foul.
Several players were jawing back and forth with each other, and it seemed as though they were following in Chandler’s footsteps. It’s easy to see how such fight and aggressiveness could be non-existent for a team well out of playoff contention, but it’s an attitude that has been set by their new coach and has continued during their play on the court.
“It says a lot about us, that we’re not going to give up,” Booker said. “We haven’t won very many games this year and the playoff chances are not there, but we’re still fighting. That’s starting the rebuild process right now. We’re going to get ready for next year. Once we get our full roster back, they’re going to mix in. They’ve been here supporting us, too. They see what we’ve been going through, so next year will be fun.”
The team had high hopes for this season. They have a young core that’s continuing to develop, and they had a good summer in free agency. After acquiring Knight at last season’s trade deadline, they re-signed him to a five-year, $70 million extension. Shortly after, they signed Chandler to a four-year, $52 million contract.
Those two moves were thought to be part of a bigger plan to lure Aldridge to Phoenix over the summer. Chandler joined Watson, Bledsoe, former head coach Hornacek and a few members of the Suns’ front office in a meeting with Aldridge during free agency. Aldridge confirmed in January that he was “very close” to picking the Suns over the Spurs.
Instead, Aldridge landed with the Spurs and the two franchises are heading in completely opposite directions. While Chandler was brought in to help the team sign Aldridge, he’s been a critical part of the team’s rebuilding process. His stats in his first season with the Suns don’t necessarily jump off of the page (he’s averaging 6.3 points and 8.4 rebounds in 23.5 minutes per game), but he’s given the locker room a leadership presence that was desperately needed.
“It’s the reason that I came here,” Chandler said. “I thought it was a great opportunity to grow with a young team and kind of help change the culture around here. For me, it’s about showing up and playing the right way.
“Granted, we want to win every game, but the most important part is how you show up and how you play the game. I’m trying to show my guys that you come out and you play no matter what. We’re on a back-to-back and there are no excuses. I thought the guys fought hard.”
With the Suns suffering injuries to several key players, it’s created an opportunity for Booker. He didn’t see too much time on the court during the first couple months of the season, averaging just 16 minutes per game through the end of December.
However, since that time, Booker has more than doubled his playing time to 34 minutes per game and is averaging 16.6 points, 3.2 assists and 3.1 rebounds. He credited Chandler with his development on and off of the court during his up-and-down rookie campaign.
“[He’s meant] everything,” Booker said. “It’s like a leadership voice. He’s kind of like the father of our locker room. It’s crazy because some of the things he says, my dad still says to me. They’re around the same age [and] it’s just great to have him around. He’s not the only veteran around here – P.J. [Tucker] is also very vocal. Ronnie [Price] is over 10-plus years in here.
“It’s a lot of good vets that we have, they’re teaching us the ways. They’ve all been on losing teams before, so they’ve been through this and they’re just trying to talk us through it. You’re still being evaluated by every other team in the league so just go out there and play your hardest every time you get a chance.”
For Chandler, the feeling between he and Booker is mutual. Chandler spoke of Booker almost like a proud older brother and praised his maturity level and his understanding of the game.
“He understands how to handle himself,” Chandler said. “He listens, he takes advice from vets and he’s a sponge. As a vet, that’s all you want from a younger player. If they listen and you see them out there trying to implement a lot of things that we’re telling them then you know they got a shot.
“For him, it’s just understanding the pace of the game and picking his times. He’s a rookie so he’s going to make some mistakes. He still doesn’t understand traps and things like that at times, but the more and more that he sees it, he adapts. He has such a high basketball IQ as a young player that we’ve seen him over the last couple of games adapt.”
While the 2015-16 season is far from where the Suns would like to be, it seems as though they have the pieces in place for their future. They seem to have a good mixture of young players and veterans that should experience more success next year.
If things fall their way, the Suns could be back on track as soon as next season. They could have as many as three first-round picks in June’s draft, and they could have as much as $32 million in cap space this summer.
The team will have to address their head coaching situation at some point, but it looks as though Watson has the team buying in and on the right track heading into the final games of the season.
NBA Announces 2018 NBA Draft Early Entry Candidates
The NBA announced the 2018 NBA Draft Early Entry list, including 181 players from colleges and post-graduate institutions and 55 international players.
NEW YORK, April 24, 2018 – The National Basketball Association announced today that 236 players — 181 players from colleges and post-graduate institutions and 55 international players — have filed as early entry candidates for the 2018 NBA Draft presented by State Farm.
Players wishing to enter the 2018 NBA Draft were required to submit a letter to the NBA to be received no later than Sunday, April 22. Players who have applied for early entry have the right to withdraw their names from consideration for the Draft by notifying the NBA of their decision in writing no later than 5 p.m. ET on Monday, June 11. Under NCAA rules, in order to retain college basketball eligibility, underclassmen who have entered the 2018 Draft must withdraw by Wednesday, May 30.
Following is the list of players from colleges and post-graduate institutions who have applied for early entry into the 2018 NBA Draft, which will be held Thursday, June 21 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y.
EARLY ENTRY CANDIDATES FOR 2018 NBA DRAFT
|Admon Gilder||Texas A&M||6-4||Junior|
|Anfernee Simons||IMG Academy||6-4||Post-Graduate|
|Barry Brown Jr.||Kansas State||6-3||Junior|
|Brian Bowen II||South Carolina||6-7||Freshman|
|Bruce Brown Jr.||Miami||6-5||Sophomore|
|Bryant Crawford||Wake Forest||6-3||Junior|
|Chris Silva||South Carolina||6-9||Junior|
|Christian Keeling||Charleston Southern||6-4||Sophomore|
|Christian Mekowulu||Tennessee State||6-9||Junior|
|DeAngelo Isby||Utah State||6-5||Junior|
|Demajeo Wiggins||Bowling Green||6-10||Junior|
|Deshon Taylor||Fresno State||6-2||Junior|
|Devonte Klines||Montana State||6-0||Junior|
|Dextor Foster||ASA College (FL)||6-5||Junior|
|DJ Hogg||Texas A&M||6-9||Junior|
|Dominic Magee||Southern Mississippi||6-4||Junior|
|Doral Moore||Wake Forest||7-1||Junior|
|Drew Eubanks||Oregon State||6-10||Junior|
|Eric Davis Jr.||Texas||6-3||Junior|
|Esa Ahmad||West Virginia||6-8||Junior|
|Eugene German||Northern Illinois||6-0||Sophomore|
|Fred Sims Jr.||Chicago State||6-4||Junior|
|Gary Trent Jr.||Duke||6-6||Freshman|
|Isaac Copeland Jr.||Nebraska||6-9||Junior|
|Ismaila Kane||Atlanta Metropolitan||6-9||Freshman|
|Jalen McDaniels||San Diego State||6-10||Freshman|
|Jalon Pipkins||Cal State-Northridge||6-4||Freshman|
|James Palmer Jr.||Nebraska||6-6||Junior|
|Jaren Jackson Jr.||Michigan State||6-11||Freshman|
|Jaylin Walker||Kent State||6-1||Junior|
|Jerome Robinson||Boston College||6-6||Junior|
|Jordan Brangers||South Plains College (TX)||6-2 S||ophomore|
|Jordan Davis||Northern Colorado||6-2||Junior|
|Jordan Murdock||Friends University||6-4||Junior|
|Josh Okogie||Georgia Tech||6-4||Sophomore|
|Kalob Ledoux||McNeese State||6-3||Sophomore|
|Keanu Peters||Salt Lake CC (UT)||6-2||Sophomore|
|Keita Bates-Diop||Ohio State||6-7||Junior|
|Kerwin Roach II||Texas||6-4||Junior|
|Ky Bowman||Boston College||6-1||Sophomore|
|Lamar Peters||Mississippi State||6-0||Sophomore|
|Lamonte Bearden||Western Kentucky||6-3||Junior|
|Landry Shamet||Wichita State||6-4||Sophomore|
|Lindell Wigginton||Iowa State||6-2||Freshman|
|Luke Maye||North Carolina||6-8||Junior|
|Makinde London||Tennessee-Chattanooga||6-10 Juni||or|
|Malik Martin||South Florida||6-11||Junior|
|Markis McDuffie||Wichita State||6-8||Junior|
|Marvin Bagley III||Duke||6-11||Freshman|
|Max Montana||San Diego State||6-9||Junior|
|Melvin Frazier Jr.||Tulane||6-6||Junior|
|Michael Porter Jr.||Missouri||6-10||Freshman|
|Mike Amius||Western Carolina||6-7||Junior|
|Mike Daum||South Dakota State||6-9||Junior|
|Miles Bridges||Michigan State||6-7||Sophomore|
|Mitchell Robinson||Western Kentucky||7-0||Freshman|
|Nick Ward||Michigan State||6-8||Sophomore|
|Quinndary Weatherspoon||Mississippi State||6-4||Junior|
|Ray Ona Embo||Tulane||6-5||Sophomore|
|Robert Franks Jr.||Washington State||6-7||Junior|
|Robert Williams III||Texas A&M||6-10||Sophomore|
|Ronshad Shabazz||Appalachian State||6-5||Junior|
|Sagaba Konate||West Virginia||6-8||Sophomore|
|Shamorie Ponds||St. John痴||6-1||Sophomore|
|Tashawn Berry||Dakota College (ND)||6-3||Sophomore|
|Tavarius Shine||Oklahoma State||6-6||Junior|
|Tony Carr||Penn State||6-5||Sophomore|
|Torin Dorn||North Carolina State||6-5||Junior|
|Tramaine Isabell Jr.||Drexel||6-1||Junior|
|Tremaine Fraiser||Westchester CC (NY)||6-3||Sophomore|
|Troy Brown Jr.||Oregon||6-7||Freshman|
|Tyler Davis||Texas A&M||6-10||Junior|
|Tyler Hall||Montana State||6-4||Junior|
|Victor Lewis II||West Texas A&M||6-3||Junior|
|Wendell Carter Jr.||Duke||6-10||Freshman|
|Yankuba Sima||Oklahoma State||6-11||Junior|
|Zach Hankins||Ferris State||6-10||Junior|
|Zhaire Smith||Texas Tech||6-5||Freshman|
The following is the list of international players who have applied for early entry into the 2018 NBA Draft:
|Player||Team/Country of Team||Height||Status|
|Adam Mokoka||Gravelines (France)||6-4||1998 DOB|
|Aleksander Dziewa||Slask Wroclaw (Poland)||6-9||1997 DOB|
|Amine Noua||ASVEL (France)||6-8||1997 DOB|
|Antonios Koniaris||PAOK (Greece)||6-4||1997 DOB|
|Arnoldas Kulboka||Capo d丹rlando (Italy)||6-10||1998 DOB|
|Berkan Durmaz||Tofas (Turkey)||6-9||1997 DOB|
|Berke Atar||Bandirma Kirmizi (Turkey)||6-11||1999 DOB|
|Blaz Mesicek||Brindisi (Italy)||6-6||1997 DOB|
|Darel Poirier||Charleville (France)||6-9||1997 DOB|
|Dzanan Musa||Cedevita (Croatia)||6-8||1999 DOB|
|Elie Okobo||Pau Orthez (France)||6-2||1997 DOB|
|Emanuel Cate||Prat (Spain)||6-9||1997 DOB|
|Erxhan Osmani||Bandirma Kirmizi (Turkey)||6-9||1998 DOB|
|Etienne Ca||Chalon (France)||6-11||1997 DOB|
|Filip Zagrajski||Beli Manastir (Croatia)||6-4||1997 DOB|
|Gabriel Galvanini||Bauru (Brazil)||6-8||1998 DOB|
|Georgios Kalaitzakis||Panathinaikos (Greece)||6-6||1999 DOB|
|Goga Bitadze||Mega Bemax (Serbia)||6-11||1999 DOB|
|Ibrahima Faye||Poitiers (France)||6-10||1997 DOB|
|Isaac Bonga||Fraport Skyliners (Germany)||6-9||1999 DOB|
|Issuf Sanon||Olimpija (Slovenia)||6-3||1999 DOB|
|Jean-Marc Pansa||Nanterre (France)||6-10||1997 DOB|
|Karim Jallow||Bayern Munich (Germany)||6-7||1997 DOB|
|Laurynas Beliauskas||Neptunas (Lithuania)||6-4||1997 DOB|
|Laurynas Birutis||Siauliai (Lithuania)||7-0||1997 DOB|
|Leon Kratzer||Wuerzburg (Germany)||6-11||1997 DOB|
|Leonardo Tote||Verona (Italy)||6-10||1997 DOB|
|LiAngelo Ball||UCLA/Vytautas (Lithuania)||6-5||1998 DOB|
|Louis Olinde||Brose Baskets (Germany)||6-9||1998 DOB|
|Luka Doncic||Real Madrid (Spain)||6-7||1999 DOB|
|Marcel Ponitka||Asseco (Poland)||6-5||1997 DOB|
|Martynas Echodas||Lietuvos Rytas (Lithuania)||6-9||1997 DOB|
|Martynas Varnas||Pieno Zvaigzdes (Lithuania)||6-5||1997 DOB|
|Matas Jogela||Zalgiris II (Lithuania)||6-6||1998 DOB|
|Matur Maker||CIBA (Canada)||6-11||1998 DOB|
|Melvyn Govindy||Cholet (France)||7-0||1997 DOB|
|Michael Uchendu||Bauru (Brazil)||6-9||1998 DOB|
|Michal Kolenda||Trefl Sopot (Poland)||6-7||1997 DOB|
|Muhaymin Mustafa||Anadolu Efes (Turkey)||6-5||1999 DOB|
|Rihards Berzins||Liepaja (Latvia)||6-11||1997 DOB|
|Rodions Kurucs||Barcelona (Spain)||6-9||1998 DOB|
|Romaric Belemene||Oviedo (Spain)||6-9||1997 DOB|
|Shekinah Munanga||Monaco (France)||6-7||1997 DOB|
|Sigfredo Casero-Ortiz||GET Vosges (France)||6-1||1997 DOB|
|Stephane Gombauld||Lille Metropole (France)||6-9||1997 DOB|
|Tadas Sedekerskis||Nevezis (Lithuania)||6-8||1998 DOB|
|Tryggvi Hlinason||Valencia (Spain)||7-1||1997 DOB|
|Vanja Marinkovic||Partizan (Serbia)||6-6||1997 DOB|
|Vasileios Charalampopoulos P||AOK (Greece)||6-9||1997 DOB|
|Viny Okouo||Unicaja (Spain)||7-1||1997 DOB|
|William McDowell-White B||aunach (Germany) 6||-5||1998 DOB|
|Williams Narace||Nancy (France)||6-8||1997 DOB|
|Xabier Lopez-Arostegui||Joventut Badalona (Spain)||6-6||1997 DOB|
|Yago Dos Santos||Paulistano (Brazil)||5-10||1999 DOB|
|Yoan Granvorka||Monthey (Switzerland)||6-7||1997 DOB|
Check out the latest Basketball Insiders Top 100 NBA Draft Prospects.
NBA Daily: Deep Bench Stays Ready for the Pelicans
Though out of the rotation, DeAndre Liggins and Jordan Crawford are staying ready to step up and contribute for New Orleans, writes David Yapkowitz.
As DeAndre Liggins is standing by his locker talking about what his next move might be in terms of free agency, he gets a ringing endorsement from the New Orleans Pelicans’ franchise guy, Anthony Davis.
“He ain’t going nowhere,” Davis shouts from across the locker room. “He ain’t going nowhere.”
Liggins pauses for a moment, lets out a laugh and then turns back.
“I don’t know, I’ll have to talk to Dell [Demps],” Liggins told Basketball Insiders with a grin.
With the NBA playoffs in full swing, there are always those guys on the fringe — players who may not always know when they’ll have a chance to get into a game. It can be tough sitting on the bench and watching the rest of the team partake in the postseason.
For players like Liggins, however, they’re just as much a part of the team as the guys in the rotation. They do bring value to the team. And they patiently await their turn, however long that may take. Even if he doesn’t get to play in an actual playoff game, Liggins believes he understands the atmosphere.
“It started off in Orlando, a playoff team. OKC was a playoff team. I’ve been in the playoffs twice,” Liggins told Basketball Insiders. “I haven’t experienced playing minutes, but I know what the feeling is like, I know what the vibe is like. It’ll be great going into the playoffs, we’ll be ready.”
Liggins has never spent more than one season with any team. He’s spent the past seven years shuffling between the Orlando Magic, Oklahoma City Thunder, Miami HEAT, Cleveland Cavaliers, Dallas Mavericks, Milwaukee Bucks and now New Orleans.
He had a bit of a breakthrough with Cleveland where he emerged as one of the better perimeter defenders on the team. He started 19 games for the Cavaliers last season and shot 37.8 percent from the three-point line. It’s been that 3 and D calling card that’s allowed him to latch on from team to team despite never really playing major minutes.
“Just bringing that defensive energy. I do all the little things like take charges, all the intangibles,” Liggins told Basketball Insiders. “I was the same way at Kentucky. You got to stick to what you know, what you do, and play a role. Especially when you’re in the league and being on this type of team.”
Liggins has a non-guaranteed contract for next season. It’s too early to know what the Pelicans front office will decide to do. He isn’t focused on that right now though. Right now, the focus is helping New Orleans make a deep playoff run even if he isn’t on the court that much.
He joined the Pelicans around mid-season after being cut by the Bucks. Although he hasn’t been on the team for very long, he’s already noticed the competitiveness and togetherness of this group. They rallied around each other following the season ending injury to DeMarcus Cousins.
“We just clicked and gelled when [Cousins] went down,” Liggins told Basketball Insiders. “I think we lost three or four in a row then after that we just started changing the way we play.”
Aside from Liggins, the Pelicans also feature Jordan Crawford who is in a similar situation right now. Their career beginnings may be a bit different, Crawford was a regular rotation player for playoff teams in the past, but as playoff rotations have tightened up, Crawford has also found himself on the outside looking in.
He was on the Pelicans roster to begin the season but was cut in favor of Jameer Nelson when an injury to Rajon Rondo precipitated the need for point guard help. He had been a key player in the rotation but upon his return near the end of the season, he found himself mostly glued to the bench.
Crawford initially was a bench scorer for the Pelicans, capable of getting hot quickly and putting up a flurry of points on the board. He was nicknamed ‘Instant Grits’ by Cousins due to his penchant for scoring. He’s a little bit unsure though of what he’s going to be asked to do this time around.
“I have no clue. I’m going to try to find out,” Crawford told Basketball Insiders. “I’m going to work my way through, do what I got to do to make the coaches happy and stuff like that. But I don’t know my role yet.”
When Crawford signed with the Pelicans earlier this month, his contract was only for the duration of the regular season and playoffs. He too will be entering free agency this summer, and due to his lack of postseason playing time, he might have to rely on past performances to secure that next contract.
He also isn’t too concerned about that right now. While he is anticipating the summertime, he’s just thrilled to be back with a familiar team, even if the playing time is scarce right now.
“I’m looking forward to the summer, definitely looking forward to the offseason,” Crawford told Basketball Insiders. “I’m happy I accomplished getting back on the team for the season. That’s good right now, I’m satisfied with that for right now.”
Although he was cut despite having initially carved out an important role on the team, Crawford always remained positive and believed things would eventually fall into place. He wasn’t sure if that place would be New Orleans, but he’s glad that it was them who came calling once again.
“I didn’t think I’d be back here. They did stay kind of connected with me, talked to me,” Crawford told Basketball Insiders. “I did have a good time while I was here, so it wasn’t no bad attitude, hard feelings or nothing. It always could’ve worked and by not having a bad attitude it allowed it to work again. It’s been a blessing.”
They stayed in contact with him and made him feel like a part of the team again. And for players like Crawford and Liggins, players who may not know who their next contract is coming from or when their next minute on the court might be, sometimes that makes all the difference
NBA Daily: 2018 60-Pick NBA Mock Draft – 4/24/18
The deadline for early entry into the 2018 NBA Draft has passed, so Basketball Insiders Publisher Steve Kyler offers up another 60-pick Mock Draft.
The Deadline for early entry into the 2018 NBA Draft was April 22, however, the NBA hasn’t yet released the full list of eligible players. There appear to be more than 153 underclassmen that have declared to “test the waters” according to reports. By way of comparison, last year there were 137 players from college and an additional 45 from international basketball that declared early, with 73 of those players pulling out after going through the process.
The 2018 Draft class could be shaping up to be one of the biggest, especially when you consider the volume of highly draftable seniors.
There are still some dates to keep in mind:
The NBA Draft Lottery will be held in Chicago on May 15. The annual NBA Draft Combine will get underway on May 16, also in Chicago. In any given draft year, roughly 70 percent of players invited to the Combine end up being drafted into the NBA, so a Combine invite is a significant draft milestone.
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.
Here is this week’s 2018 NBA Mock Draft, based on the final pre-draft lottery draft order:
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. Based on the final regular-season standings should convey to Philadelphia if the draft lottery holds true to the standings.
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 would convey if the draft lottery holds true to the standings.
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/