NBA Mock Draft
Written: Andrew Willams
The Commissioner walks across the stage. Sitting patiently are multiple guys in audacious suits that are waiting to hear their names called. Their whole future hangs in the balance as they wait for the decisions from above. Some see a great potential future while others are worried about where they will go. Will they even have a future? Will they be shipped overseas? You will find all of these answers and more out in the summer blockbuster, The Batman!
This is actually the setup for the 2020 NBA Draft which will be unlike any draft in history. We don’t know when it will be, we don’t know where it will be, but we do know that hundreds of young men will wait to learn about their future in the NBA.
This is an odd draft. In my opinion, the guys at the top are not game changers and the overall talent will not blow your socks off but there are some hidden gems in there. The storylines are pretty amazing.
1. What will the Warriors do? It’s pretty likely they will have a top 3 pick and will have their big 3 returning. Do they keep their pick or trade it for a fourth guy?
2. Do the Lakers or Clippers make any moves to one up each other? Both have traded away most of their picks, but the draft is sneaky and there’s always maneuvering going on. Could Kyle Kuzma be shipped somewhere? Montrezl Harrell?
3. How is the draft order determined? We’re not sure if we’re even going to have an NBA Playoffs so how can the order be chosen?
While those questions are intriguing, here’s what we will do. I am going to do a Mock Draft for the first round broken into two parts. This will be part 1. The worst record will have the first pick and the best record the last. I will also throw in some trades to spice it up.
So pull out your Knicks jersey from the garbage and lets get ready to yell incessantly about how stupid our teams are! Welcome to the 2020 NBA Draft.
Round 1: Pick 1
Golden State Warriors
Pick: James Wiseman (Memphis)
Why: This one is really weird because of how the Warriors are built. They don’t need guards (Splash Bros) and have Draymond coming back as well. They traded for Andrew Wiggins (who cares) and ended up with the worst record in basketball. Anthony Edwards is probably the best player, but how does he fit in there? I think that the Warriors try to package Dray, Wiggins, and the 1st together for Giannis (not happening) and then settle with Wiseman. Wiseman can be an elite shot blocker but is raw offensively. He’s an athletic freak and if he develops some more low
Post moves along with his jumper, he could become a Chris Bosh or Marvin Bagley type.
Round 1: Pick 2
Pick: Anthony Edwards (Georgia)
Why: the most talented player in the draft and possibly the guy with the highest upside. He’s an elite one on scorer and has a really good jump shot. I think he could be a high volume scorer in the NBA and also has really good athleticism. Put him with Colin Sexton and Kevin Porter Jr. And I think the Cavs may have something. (I don’t really know what that something is, but it’s definitely something) If Edwards reaches his potential he’s probably a 20-25 PPG scorer in the league.
Round 1: Pick 3
Pick: Obi Toppin (Dayton)
Why: The T Wolves have KAT, D’Lo, and Jarrett Culver as their core. Obi Toppin would slide in perfectly and be a good Power Forward for this team. The National Player of the Year averaged over 20 PPG and shot
39% from the three. Athletically he would immediately provide a spark for the Wolves with his thunderous dunks and highlight reel plays. He still needs to continue to develop his jump shot, rebounding, and defense (but the wolves don’t really play defense so he slides right in perfectly)
Round 1: Pick 4
Pick: LaMelo Ball (overseas)
Why: Melo is 6’8 and most consider him
The best of the Ball brothers. He’s an elite scorer and sees the court well. He is a score first guard, but did show a willingness to spread the ball around more when he played overseas. The important part here is the fit. The Hawks have Trae Young, John Collins, Cam Reddish, and DeAndre Hunter to build around. Adding a 6’8 guard to go along with the smaller Young would be ideal. The only part I do worry about is which one plays off the ball and how well they fit.
*Spoiler Alert: He doesn’t end up there.*
Round 1: Pick 5
Pick: Onyeka Okongwu (USC)
Why: Okongwu is super athletic and is great around the rim. Would be a good replacement rim protector in the place of Andre Drummond. The Pistons future, at the moment, is fairly grim. Derrick Rose is older but is playing well, and their only assets are Luke Kennard and Sekou Doumbouya. But adding Okongwu would help.
Round 1: Pick 6
New York Knicks
Pick: Trades Pick, Julius Randle, and Alonzo Trier to Atlanta for LaMelo Ball.
Why: The Knicks need a big star with a big name and LaMelo would fit that need. The 6’8 guard would be the highest profile Knick since the other Melo (or that weird Jeremy Lin stretch. LIN-SANITY!!!) and would be a draw for other free agents (or the entire Ball Family. Imagine Lavar if this happens.)
Round 1:Pick 6
Atlanta Hawks (via trade)
Pick: Deni Avdija (Israel)
Why: I really like Deni for two reasons. 1. He’s a 6’8 Small Forward that can handle the ball, be a playmaker, and score. 2. He’s always been really good when I draft him on 2K. The Hawks probably care more about reason 1 because he could play without the ball and would be an ideal 3 in small ball lineup for
Them. I care more about reason 2 because I normally win the championship when he’s on my team.
Round 1: Pick 7
Pick: Tyrese Haliburton (Iowa State)
Why: Tyrese averaged 15.2 PPG, 5.9 Reb, and 6.5 assists last year at Iowa State. He is a 6’5 PG that is an athletic defender and could fit alongside Coby White really well. He could also share the floor with Zach Lavine (although Zach Lavine will probably be wearing Purple and Gold soon). I think Tyrese is very underrated in this draft and could sneak up and have a Shai-Gilgeous type impact.
Round 1: Pick 8
Pick: Isaac Okoro (Auburn)
Why: Okoro is a slasher that can get to
The rim and has lots of potential. He needs to improve his offensive skill set but at 6’6 is a lengthy defender and can be a great player. The Hornets play really hard and Okoro would fit right into that mix. I think he would be a solid guy alongside Devonte Graham
And PJ Washington
Round 1: Pick 9
Pick: Precious Achiuwa (Memphis)
Why: Wizards get Wall back and still have Brad Beal. Rui Hachimura showed some promise and now they need to continue to build on that core. Precious is an athletic specimen and could be an elite defender in the pros. He needs to improve offensively, but did show some promise on the offensive side at Memphis. Could work well as an athletic small ball 5 if the Wizards wanted to run.
Round 1: Pick 10
Pick: Cole Anthony (UNC)
Why: In his limited time at UNC, Cole showed elite offensive skills. The Suns have a solid young core of Booker, Ayton, and Kelly Oubre. Anthony would be a guy that could control the game with the ball in his hands and make plays when needed. I think Cole is one of the most underrated guys in the draft and would love to have him on my team.
Round 1: Pick 11
Pick: Tyrese Maxey (Kentucky)
Why: DeAaron Fox runs the show in Sacramento and Marvin Bagley has potential down low. Murmurings around the Kings is that Buddy Hield could get shopped around this summer. Maxey would be a good replacement as a guy that is elite at getting to the basket and showed signs of being a volume shooter in college. Maxey moves pretty well off of the ball and would compliment Fox really well.
Round 1: Pick 12
San Antonio Spurs
Pick: Killian Hayes (Ulm)
Why: Killian is a 6’5 17 year old from France that is a savvy passer and is good running the pick and roll. The Spurs have a very decorated history with foreign players and Killian would fit right into that mold. He’s not the best shooter and could use some work on the defensive side, but seems like a guy that would fit right into Pop’s system.
Round 1: Pick 13
Portland Trail Blazers
Pick: Aaron Nesmith (Vandy)
Why: If you need a guy that can get buckets, Aaron Nesmith is your guy. A 6’6 small forward that averaged 23 PPG and shot 52% from the three point line will fit right in to the Dame Lillard/CJ McCollum offense in Portland. Nesmith is another guy that I think could be a very underrated prospect going forward.
Round 1: Pick 14
New Orleans Pelicans
Pick: RJ Hampton (New Zealand)
Why: JJ Redick is older and Jrue Holiday could be a trade target this offseason. New Orleans is building around a core of Zion, Brandon Ingram, and Lonzo Ball. RJ Hampton is an elite athlete and has improved his jump shot. His athletic style of play would fit alongside Lonzo Ball pretty well.
Round 1: Pick 15
Pick: Boston trades picks 15, 26, and Jaylen Brown to Washington Wizards for Bradley Beal.
Why: The Celtics have an elite young wing in Jayson Taytum and would benefit from having an elite scorer beside of him. Washington is looking to rebuild and would add a young defensive stud in Brown along with some picks.
Round 1: Pick 15
Pick: Jaden McDaniels (Washington)
Why: McDaniels is a long 6’9 forward with great shooting ability. He didn’t get the opportunity to really play on a big stage at Washington but has elite potential. If he hits his ceiling, he could be a very versatile bench scorer.