Last week I published my 1.0 mock draft, I was hoping to put this out on Monday but I wanted to wait as long as possible to include any picks that changed hands after the moratorium lifted. Monday night was some fun and there’s rumors galore but I can’t wait any longer to put this out. I do expect a bunch of trades to happen during the draft. Not a lot of movement on the board but just enough to have some fun with.
1. Minnesota Timberwolves – Anthony Edwards – Guard
I think Minnesota is going to try and move this pick but I think ultimately the asking price will be too high. I think something like the 6th pick and Cam Reddish could get it done but I’m not sure if Atlanta would bite. I think LaMelo has the higher ceiling but Edwards in theory is the better fit for this roster, that is why I have him jumping to the one spot. Even if he doesn’t actually like basketball and would rather be a rapper, not great for this to come out the day of the draft and I think further hurts Minnesotas chances of moving this.
2. Golden State Warriors – LaMelo Ball – Guard
This pick is so interesting to me. Like the Wolves, the Warriors are trying to move this pick but assuming they can’t I think LaMelo could be a fun piece for this team but also I think more teams would be willing to move on him in a trade then Wiseman. I think Wiseman will end up being the better player and if he was picked by the Warriors would probably become their starting center right off the bat. Part of the reason I am leaning towards Ball is because of the rumors that he is dropping in the draft, it feels more like a trade tactic then a if there’s smoke there’s fire type of situation. This might be enough to make the Hornets trade up from 3 if they think the Warriors might really take Wiseman.
3. Charlotte Hornets – James Wiseman – Center
Wiseman really might end up being the best player in this draft. A lot of people, myself included, see this draft as not having a star and more of a depth draft. For the most part I agree with that, I think depth is selling these guys short, there’s starters in this draft no doubt but Wiseman is probably one of the only guys I can see developing into an actual stud in this league. I think his fit with Charlotte is perfect for him and the team, as well. If they can get him without losing their younger guys they HAVE to do it even if it means trading up and “losing” the trade.
4. Chicago Bulls – Isaac Okoro – Guard/Forward
Most mocks have Avdija going here and I understand why but I disagree. Okoro isn’t as big as Avdija but he can still play SF like the Bulls need and for a team this bad I’d draft for talent not need. Okoro might end up being one of the three best players in this draft once it’s all said and done. I like Obi Toppin here too but I think the Bulls should give Lauri and Carter time.
5. Cleveland Cavaliers – Obi Toppin – Forward
I’m not as high on Obi as it seems like the rest of the world is. I just don’t see it, a PF/C in a SF body on a team with 3 PF/C making big money doesn’t seem like a good fit but Obi isn’t going to drop to far. I have him as the third best big in this draft because of his offense and motor but his defense is a concern no doubt.
6. Atlanta Hawks – Tyrese Haliburton – Guard
Not sure the Hawks are going to make this pick, it does not sound like they want to but we’ll see. If they do then Haliburton is their guy and if he isn’t the GM should be fired. Tyrese is one of the most NBA ready guys in this draft, he would be an immediate help to the Hawks.
7. Detroit Pistons – Onyeka Okongwu – Forward/Center
I hate Okongwu for the Pistons, mostly because this team is a cesspool, but I don’t see him falling too much. I think this kid is really good and we might end up asking how he fell to 7 in a couple years.
8. New York Knicks – Deni Avdija – Forward
I think with the rise of guys like Haliburton, Okoro and even Okongwu Deni just gets the short end of the draft stick. Good for the Knicks, Deni is raw but has been a pro in the EuroLeague so he should come in ready to play.
9. Washington Wizards – Devin Vassell – Forward
10. Phoenix Suns – Aaron Nesmith – Forward
After trading for Chris Paul this team is going to need to add a few things. For starters, a SF who can shoot. Nesmith is the best shooter in this draft and would be a menace on the court with Booker or coming off the bench for him. CP3 is going to be able to find him on drive and kicks, this kid is lights out and I think can develop into a nice 3nD guy in the NBA.
11. San Antonio Spurs – Patrick Williams – Forward
12. Sacramento Kings – Kira Lewis Jr. – Guard
13. New Orleans Pelicans – Killian Hayes – Guard
Pretty big drop for Hayes. I think him playing on the equivalent of a G League team in Europe that wasn’t very good and he didn’t have great numbers really hurts him. He is said to have one of the highest ceilings in the draft but this has the makings of a Euro bust.
14. Boston Celtics – Saddiq Bey – Forward
15. Orlando Magic – RJ Hampton – Guard
16. Houston Rockets – Tyrese Maxey – Guard
Rockets look to be starting over, Maxey is a sleeper pick. Lottery talent but inconsistent play dropped him.
17. Minnesota Timberwolves – Tyrell Terry – Guard
If they pass on LaMelo I think Terry might be their consolation prize. Wolves need a lot but a backup ball handler is high on the list.
18. Dallas Mavericks – Aleksej Pokusevski – Forward
19. Brooklyn Nets – Desmond Bane – Guard
20. Miami Heat – Precious Aciuwa – Forward
21. Philadelphia 76ers – Josh Green – Guard
22. Denver Nuggets – Jalen Smith – Forward
23. New York Knicks – Zeke Nnaji – Center
24. New Orleans Pelicans – Leandro Bolmaro – Guard
25. Oklahoma City Thunder – Cole Anthony – Guard
Probably a late teens talent player but a tough year at UNC has him falling down the board. With no more CP3 or Schroeder OKC needs another ball handler along with Shai and Anthony is the best talent available.
26. Boston Celtics – Isaiah Stewart – Forward/Center
27. Utah Jazz – Theo Maledon – Guard
28. Oklahoma City Thunder – Jaden McDaniels – Forward
29. Toronto Raptors – Nico Mannion – Guard
30. Boston Celtics – Tre Jones – Guard
Make sure you tune into the Branded Sports NBA Draft Watch Party tonight! We are going live a little before 8PM.