16 Days And Counting
Believe it or not, the 2017 NBA Draft is less than 16 days away. In a quirk of the schedule, this year’s draft is roughly a week earlier in the calendar than normal, which means the top over pick will get announced a lot sooner than in a typical year.
With so few days left in the process, the top overall talents are starting to meet with teams, meaning we should have a much clearer picture of what the top of the draft will look like this time next week.
Here is the latest look at all 60 picks of the 2017 Draft:
The LA Lakers are finally going to get a serious look at UCLA guard Lonzo Ball. He is scheduled to meet with the Lakers on Tuesday and will work out for their leadership. Sources close to the Lakers process have been adamant that they have not locked in on any player yet and will be making their decisions after working out and meeting with all of the top candidates.
Ball is generally considered the second-best talent in the draft class, however, despite the assumption that he would be a Laker, the team is not willing to concede that he’s their guy. In fact, there continues to be talk that Kentucky guard De’Aaron Fox might actually be higher on the Lakers board than Ball, so it will be up to him to show the Lakers why he should be the guy.
The Boston Celtics are scheduled to spend two days with top overall prospect Markelle Fultz. While it is generally assumed the Celtics would draft Fultz number one overall, the Celtics are also trying to meet with Ball and Fox as they do their due diligence on the draft. While Fultz to the Celtics seems very likely, the Philadelphia 76ers are also trying to meet with Fultz and Ball, as they are hearing much of the same regarding Fox as a possibility at one and at two, meaning the 76ers could land one of the elite guards if Fox does indeed go higher than initially expected.
The enigma in this draft class continues to be Kansas forward Josh Jackson. He is on the radar for both the Lakers and 76ers, with an increasing sense that if he is on the board at four, he’ll be a Phoenix Sun. Jackson is expected to start meeting with teams this week although he’s not expected to work out for teams outside the top four.
There has been some talk that Boston might be open to trading the top overall pick. However, the sense this week is that Boston is keeping the pick. The 76ers are said to be open to trading all of their second-round picks, but they too might be open to moving the third pick in the right scenario.
The next installment of the Basketball Insiders Consensus Mock Draft, featuring perspective from four of our staff writers, will drop tomorrow at 12pm EST.
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