With less than two weeks until Draft night, teams are starting to workout prospects and get an idea of who they want to choose. These workouts are affecting players stock left right and center, causing some to climbs and others to fall. Who lands where in mock draft 2?
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Pick #1 Boston Celtics – Markelle Fultz, PG, Washington
BOSTON still picks the best player on the board in Fultz in Version 2. Unless Boston executes a blockbuster trade, which I also think is unlikely, they are locked onto Fultz in my eyes.
Pick #2 Los Angeles Lakers – Lonzo Ball, PG, UCLA
RUMOURS are swirling regarding the lock that was Lonzo to the Lakers, however, I think it’s all smoke and mirrors. Regardless of being outplayed by De’Aaron Fox last year in the tournament, that won’t play on Magic’s mind as they take the ultra talented Ball. No not Lavar.
Pick #3 Philadelphia 76ers – Josh Jackson, SG/SF, Kansas
THE pick that shapes the rest of the draft. I’ve been flipping a lot between Jackson and Fox here, but I think his two-way play and athleticism is a must for a Philly team that needs, well….everything.
Pick #4 Phoenix Suns – Jayson Tatum, SF, Duke
IF one of those top three slide down to this spot Phoenix may be tempted, but Jayson Tatum seems like a perfect fit. His ability to score late in games will see he and Devin Booker form a scary duo for the next decade.
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Pick #5 Sacramento Kings – De’Aaron Fox, PG, Kentucky
DE’AARON Fox seems to be dictating a lot in this draft. There are rumours that Sacramento wants to trade up to secure Fox, but I think he’ll still be on the board when they pick fifth. Thus, allowing their dreams to come.
Pick #6 Orlando Magic – Jonathan Isaac, SF/PF, Florida State
LENGTHY, athletic and raw. Jonathan Isaac joining the Magic fits their M.O. of ‘let’s get every player of this description that plays a combination of the 3, 4 and maybe the 5’. In all seriousness, Isaac ceiling makes him hard to pass up here for the Magic.
Pick #7 Minnesota Timberwolves – Lauri Markkanen, PF, Arizona
MINNESOTA attempted a league low 21 three’s a game last year. Markkanen has the ability to help them stretch the floor while the likes of Towns and Wiggins dominate the ball.
Pick #8 New York Knicks –Dennis Smith Jr, PG, NC State
ONE of my favourite prospects in this draft is Dennis Smith. He is copping a lot of shit for not being a great defender and therefore the Knicks may look elsewhere. Smith does bring excitement and instant offense to the table though, two things the Knicks severely lack.
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Pick #9 Dallas Mavericks – Frank Ntilikina, PG, France
THE point guard affectionately known as Frank seems to one of the hardest players to pin point in this draft. The French floor general seems to going no lower than the Knicks at #8, but if he does then Dallas won’t let him slide any further.
Pick #10 Sacramento Kings – Zach Collins, C, Gonzaga
WITH their backcourt set the Kings turn to the frontcourt with their 2nd pick. One of the highest risers in draft boards, Collins had a great NCAA Tournament that will now see him become a lottery pick.
Pick #11 Charlotte Hornets – Malik Monk, SG, Kentucky
MALIK Monk is the unlucky one that slips out of the top 10 in Version 2. However, his talents are desperately needed in Charlotte and his scoring punch will be called upon from day one. A perfect fit alongside Kemba, this is the jolt in the arm that the Hornets offense needs.
Pick #12 Detroit Pistons –Luke Kennard, SG, Duke
OUTSIDE of the top 12 there are a million and one possibilities. A Detroit team that needs help in most areas poises plenty of questions. I think wing scoring/shooting is the area they need to address first, enter Luke Kennard.
Pick #13 Denver Nuggets – OG Anunoby, SF/PF, Indiana
I’M sticking with OG to the Nugs and I think this will be a serious steal. If he was healthy all of last year there are arguments that he could have been a top five pick. If one of the top five PG prospect slides they could snap them up, otherwise take the guy that reminds me of Kawhi Leonard.
Pick #14 Miami Heat – Justin Patton, C, Creighton
WITH Miami rumoured to be in the mix for Gordon Hayward this off-season, the Heat add some youth to their frontcourt. Putting the high upside project in Patton behind Hassan Whiteside is too good an opportunity to pass up.
Pick #15 Portland Trailblazers –Ike Anigbogu, C UCLA
DEFENSE has never been a strong suit of the Trailblazers backcourt. The idea of adding a shot blocking Anigbogu to clean up the mess as defenders blow by McCollum/Lillard? Thumbs up.
Pick #16 Chicago Bulls – Justin Jackson, SF, North Carolina
ANOTHER players that stays put from version 1 is Justin Jackson. The jack-of-all-trades wing needs to prove that his outside shooting wasn’t just a flash in the pan, but his defense will earn him minutes regardless.
Pick #17 Milwaukee Bucks – Jarrett Allen, C, Texas
I don’t think that the talented Jarrett Allen slides past the Bucks. He deserves to be a lottery pick, but a slew of other players in this deep draft mean he is pushed back. While he might not fill a need for Milwaukee he can run the floor that will only get better in time.
Pick #18 Indiana Pacers – Donovan Mitchell, SG, Louisville
MONTA Ellis isn’t the long term answer for the Pacers backcourt, and Donovan Mitchell is still developing his point guard skills. That means the opportunity to develop alongside Jeff Teague in portions and sporadically run the offense suits Indiana perfectly.
Pick #19 Atlanta Hawks – John Collins, C, Wake Forrest
DWIGHT Howard’s days in Atlanta are numbered, so forgetting what exact player the Hawks choose for a minute, the answer is to go big here. Collins needs to work on his fundamentals before he reaches his potential, therefore developing behind Howard for a few seasons is the way to go.
Pick #20 Portland Trailblazers – Harry Giles, PF/C, Duke
AT this point of the draft taking a chance on Harry Giles isn’t a bad idea. The Duke prospect has been plagued by knee injuries, but if he can regain his feet and stay healthy Portland will be rubbing their hands together.
Pick #21 Oklahoma City Thunder – T.J. Leaf, PF, UCLA
ANOTHER big man that can score, but not defend. Hooray for OKC! In all seriousness, Leaf could easily produce what free agent Taj Gibson did last year, and then some, at a much cheaper rate. Behind Kanter the Thunder are pretty shallow at the 4, so Leaf and his ability to stretch the floor will help.
Pick #22 Brooklyn Nets –Terrance Ferguson, SG, Australia
UBER athletic Terrance Ferguson is a streaky shooter and somewhat of a long-term project. Meaning he is the perfect addition to the Nets backcourt, as this franchise isn’t going anywhere fast.
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Pick #23 Toronto Raptors – Juwan Evans, PG, Oklahoma State
SORRY Raptors fans, it might be time to prepare for life after Kyle Lowry. He may very well stay north of the border, but adding the speedy, undersized floor general in Evans helps the team if he jumps ship (to San Antonio?).
Pick #24 Utah Jazz – Rodions Kurucs, SF/PF, Latvia
WITH the unfortunate news that French prospect Jonathan Jeanne may have a career ending disorder the Jazz will look elsewhere. Draft and stash candidate Rodions Kurucs could offer flexibility and his high IQ in a few years time.
Pick #25 Orlando Magic – D.J. Wilson, PF, Michigan
THERE is no easy answer for the Magic at #25, although they could draft Wilson who is working his way into the 1st round. Wilson’s inconsistencies will mean he has to work hard to see the floor in a crowded frontcourt at Orlando, but he can defend multiple positions and develop into a piece moving forward.
Pick #26 Portland Trailblazers – Tyler Lydon, SF/PF, Syracuse
AS defenses collapse on Damian Lillard and C.J. McCullon they will need someone to spot up and knock down shots. Allen Crabbe? Maybe. Mo Harkless? Nah. Evan Turner? Haha. Tyler Lydon? Bingo.
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Pick #27 Brooklyn Nets –Jordan Bell, PF/C, Oregon
THE super athletic and intense Jordan Bell offers the Nets plenty of excitement moving forward. Emerging as a great rebounder and shot blocker late last year playing him alongside Brook Lopez is a pretty nice fit.
Pick #28 Los Angeles Lakers – Tony Bradley, C, North Carolina
BRADLEY supposedly left school because he had a 1st round promise from a team. I have a hunch that the team that made that promise to the long, mobile Tar Hell was the Lakers.
Pick #29 San Antonio Spurs – Anzejs Pasecniks, C, Latvia
OF course the Spurs will take an international prospect, who will be stashed overseas, make his way to Popovich and Co in a few years time and contribute meaningful minutes when he buys into the teams philosophy. It’s the circle of life.
Pick #30 Utah Jazz – Semi Ojeleye, SF/PF, SMU
AS the league continues to put emphasis on ‘small ball’ lineups, Ojeleye offers great versatility. Should Hayward or Joe Johnson walk he can help soften the blow with wing minutes, thanks to with his big frame and endless athleticism.
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