Final NBA Mock Draft 3.0.
It’s NBA Draft day and it is time to release my final NBA Mock Draft, version 3.0. Lots of news and two trades have happened since my last mock draft. This is arguably one of the tougher drafts to predict in recent years. The only clear-cut easy prediction is that Kentucky power forward, Anthony Davis, is going number one overall to the New Orleans Hornets. After that, anything can happen. A few more trades may happen leading up to the draft and during the draft. Teams that are talking trades the most are the Charlotte Bobcats (looking to deal the number two pick), Cleveland Cavaliers (looking to trade up to the from the number four pick), Sacramento Kings (who may trade up or down from the number five pick), Houston Rockets (who are looking to acquire a fourth pick, one in the lottery, to send to Orlando for Dwight Howard, or to select Weber State point guard Damian Lillard or UCONN center Andre Drummond), and the Boston Celtics (who have the numbers 21 and 22 picks and are looking to move up into the lottery). The Oklahoma City Thunder, who hold the number 28 pick, and the Los Angeles Lakers, who don’t own a first round pick, are also two teams who are looking to trade and even trade up into the lottery.
Players to watch being dealt before the draft or during the draft are, Pau Gasol of the Lakers, Luol Deng of the Bulls, Tyreke Evans of the Kings, Kyle Lowry of the Rockets, Dejuan Blair of the Spurs, Rudy Gay of the Grizzlies, Anderson Varajeo of the Cavaliers, and Andre Iguodala of the 76’ers. The two biggest names that may be traded but I don’t see likely are Dwight Howard of the Magic and Josh Smith of the Hawks.
Here we go, here is my final mock draft! Here is my previous one from last week, https://scoreboardsteve.com/2012/06/22/nba-mock-draft-2-0/ . Enjoy the draft!
1.New Orleans Hornets: Anthony Davis, PF, Kentucky – There’s nothing to say, it’s the clear-cut choice.
2.Charlotte Bobcats: Thomas Robinson, PF, Kansas – A trade is very likely but incase there isn’t a trade it sounds like it’s between Robinson, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, and Harrison Barnes here, but Robinson to me is the best prospect and is starting to become the favorite from recent reports.
3.Washington Wizards: Bradley Beal, SG, Florida – The Wizards have acquired small forward Trevor Ariza and power forward/center Emeka Okafor from the Hornets last week, so that means there’s just one big glaring need at shooting guard and that’s where Beal comes in. He’s a sharp shooter and is getting Ray Allen comparisons.
4.Cleveland Cavaliers: Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, SF, Kentucky – The Cavs want Beal above everyone and may make a deal with Charlotte for the number two pick so they can take him away from Washington. Kidd-Gilchrist and Harrison Barnes are numbers two and three on their list. I think they go with Kidd-Gilchrist because of his all around game, great defense, and he’s arguably the most NBA ready player in the draft.
5.Sacramento Kings: Harrison Barnes, SF, UNC – The Kings miss out on MKG and Robinson and settle with Barnes, who does fit a need and adds a scorer. Hopefully he can add some maturity and leadership to a team that needs it.
6.Portland Trail Blazers: Damian Lillard, PG, Weber State – Lillard is climbing up draft boards and is a point guard that can score and gets Derrick Rose comparisons. Lillard won’t slip past New Orleans at 10, so he won’t make it to Portland’s number 11 pick. Lillard is a need at PG for Portland and the Blazers can add a more ready big man at 11 then take the risk on Andre Drummond here and watch him turn into Greg Oden 2.0.
7.Golden State Warriors: Dion Waiters, SG, Syracuse – The Warriors need scoring and Waiters has been rising up draft boards and really broke out this year at Syracuse. Golden State needs a SG anyway after trading Monta Ellis to Milwaukee.
8.Toronto Raptors: Austin Rivers, SG, Duke – Another guy that has rose up draft boards, Rivers offers some scoring for Toronto who desperately needs it and has nobody on their team.
9.Detroit Pistons: Andre Drummond, C, UCONN – The Pistons need a big man to pair with Greg Monroe. Getting Drummond would be a huge surprise considering they wouldn’t trade up. Drummond is 6’11 just like Monroe and would give the Pistons a promising scary young front court duo for years to come. I don’t have a strong opinion on Drummond but this is a no brainer pick for Detroit if he falls to them, otherwise UNC’s John Henson, a PF, is the pick.
10.New Orleans Hornets: Jeremy Lamb, SG, UCONN – The Hornets would love Lillard or Rivers here but with both off the board, they settle for Lamb. Lamb plays good defense, has leadership, and can score, which is exactly what the Hornets need to add.
11.Portland Trail Blazers: Myers Leonard, C, Illinois – After taking a scoring point guard with their first pick of the first round, the Blazers will go big with their second pick unless maybe someone like Rivers or Waiters fell here. Leonard is 7’1 and fits a need at center for Portland, so he’ll start right away.
12.Houston Rockets: Tyler Zeller, C, UNC – The Rockets need a big man after trading Sam Dalembert to Milwaukee for this pick. He’s 7’0, plays terrific defense, and can add scoring. He can play right away, so he’s a good pick to add to their front court.
13.Phoenix Suns: Terrance Ross, SG, Washington – The Suns need a shooter badly and Ross sure can shoot. I was close to mocking Kendall Marshall here since Steve Nash might be gone, but I think the Suns would prefer a scorer here and wait on Nash’s possible replacement.
14.Milwaukee Bucks: Terrance Jones, PF, Kentucky – The Bucks need a forward after acquiring Sam Dalembert from Houston to play center. Jones adds toughness, defense, and leadership to the Bucks. They don’t need a scorer with Monta Ellis and Brandon Jennings on the team.
15.Philadelphia 76ers: John Henson, PF, UNC – The 76ers could go anywhere with this pick, outside of small forward if they don’t trade Iguodala. Henson can rebound, block shots, and defend multiple positions. This a VERY young team who needs maturity and a leader, so anyone from UNC or Kentucky would add that.
16.Houston Rockets: Kendall Marshall, PG, UNC – Kyle Lowry might not last much longer in Houston, which means a new PG will be needed. I see Marshall being the next Rajon Rondo, as he has fantastic court vision, passes great, but not much of a scorer.
17.Dallas Mavericks: Royce White, SF/PF, Iowa State – The Mavs miss out on Marshall and get a top 10 talent who was falling from an anxiety disorder. White adds toughness and a great all around game to a team that needs any help they can get.
18.Houston Rockets: Moe Harkless, SF, St.Johns – The Rockets like Harkless and he brings everything to the table. A guy that finishes, can rebound, and add defense. Adding Zeller, Marshall, and Harkless would be a great hall for the Rockets if they don’t make a trade into the top 10 or don’t acquire a guy like Dwight Howard, Josh Smith, or Pau Gasol.
19.Orlando Magic: Perry Jones III, PF, Baylor – The Magic can take anyone with this pick. Jones is another top 10 talent that is falling. He’s falling because he has a bad motor. If Orlando can get him on track, he’d be a tremendous pick at this position.
20.Denver Nuggets: Arnett Moultrie, PF, Mississippi State – Moultrie is a big that adds depth to a Nuggets team that can draft for best player available (BPF). He can score well and can definitely rebound. Solid pick here for Denver.
21.Boston Celtics: Andrew Nicholson, PF, St.Bonaventure – The Celtics definitely need a big whether or not Kevin Garnett returns. Nicholson is a player that played on a non big named school but has tremendous talent. He can go from 15-20, but the Celtics look like they like him based on recent reports I’ve read.
22.Boston Celtics: Draymond Green, SF/PF, Michigan State – Green is the type of player the Celtics should draft. He can play either forward position, can score, rebounds very well, and can pass great for a forward. He’s a good all around player and would get even better learning behind Paul Pierce.
23.Atlanta Hawks: Tony Wroten Jr, PG, Washington – The Hawks can use a point guard and this is a good spot for him to be picked. He’s a good passer and that’s what they need for Joe Johnson, Josh Smith, and Al Horford.
24.Cleveland Cavaliers: Fab Melo, C, Syracuse – The Cavs can use a big man to develop behind Anderson Varajeo. Plus, the Cavs are shopping Varajeo which may open this spot up to Melo. Fab is a developmental project but already plays good defense but needs help on his offense. He’ll take two years.
25.Memphis Grizzlies: Marquis Teague, PG, Kentucky – The Grizzlies don’t have much depth at guard and could use a winner like Teague. He’d be a nice addition and backup to Conley.
26.Indiana Pacers: Evan Fournier, SG, France – The Pacers would like a center, but there’s no one worth taking here. They can use depth at guard but aren’t in desperate need of one, which can let them stash Fournier in Europe for another year. He’s only 19 anyway, so no need to rush the kid.
27.Miami Heat: Festus Ezeli, C, Vanderbilt – The Heat’s biggest need is at center and this is where Ezeli sounds like he’ll be taken, if he is indeed taken in the first round. Ezeli can help on the glass.
28.Oklahoma City Thunder: Quincy Miller, SF/PF, Baylor – Miller is another top 10 talent, with all the talent in the world. He can score a bunch, rebound, and play great defense. A knee injury is making him slip. The award outweighs the risk at this spot. He can either play SF or PF.
29.Chicago Bulls: Tyshawn Taylor, PG, Kansas – There are confirmed reports that the Chicago Bulls will select Tyshawn Taylor with the number 29 pick. They like him a lot and think he’d be a great replacement for Derrick Rose in the wake of his knee injury and can be a great backup to Rose when he’s healthy. Taylor’s lock down defense is what Chicago likes the most I bet.
30.Golden State Warriors: Jeff Taylor, SF, Vanderbilt – Taylor fits a need at SF and sure can shoot. He has deep range and plays great defense. The Warriors may move this pick.