1. New York Knicks: Jahlil Okafor C Duke
Okafor allows the Knicks to take the most pro-ready prospect. He is a terrific back-to-the-basket scorer who knows how to use his body to create space inside. Adding a scoring big man will allow Phil Jackson to keep adding key pieces to his triangle offense.
2. Minnesota Timberwolves: Karl-Anthony Towns PF/C Kentucky
Towns gives the ability to the Timberwolves to shop Nikola Pekovic for picks or other young talent, as Towns and Gorgui Dieng will combine to make a defensive force in the paint for the Timberwolves. Towns has one of the highest potentials of any prospect, but will need time to develop, and in Minnesota, where all of the young players are finding themselves with no pressure of winning soon, this will allow for Towns to thrive.
3. Philadelphia 76ers: Emmanuel Mudiay PG International
Mudiay only has been able to play around 17 games in China due to injury and now that he is healthy, he is stuck behind Will Bynum who has been fantastic for the Guangdong Southern Tigers. Mudiay draws many comparisons to current NBA star John Wall, and with the recent trade of Michael Carter Williams the 76ers have a huge need at PG and Mudiay’s style of play fits perfectly with the fast paced attack of the 76ers.
4. LA Lakers: D’Angelo Russell PG/SG Ohio State
The Lakers need a new face for their franchise as the Kobe era is quickly ending. Russell brings a swagger to the court. Russell is a pure scorer whether he’s slashing to the bucket or shooting it from deep. The Lakers back-court is horrendous without Kobe, and even when Kobe comes back he needs a wing mate who can handle the ball and take some offensive pressure off of him.
5. Orlando Magic: Stanley Johnson SF Arizona
With Tobias Harris ready to hit the open market this upcoming off-season, the Magic can look to add a younger, cheaper option with just as much talent. Johnson brings size, strength, athleticism and versatility to the floor and some much needed help on the wing.
6. Sacramento Kings: Myles Turner PF/C Texas
Turner gives Demarcus Cousins the floor spacer he needs to open up down low for him. Turner has incredible athleticism and his ability to stretch the floor only increases his potential. On the defensive end he is an elite rim protector averaging 2.7 blocks a game while only playing 22.6 minutes a game. Turner needs to improve his offensive game down low but they will come with time and adding muscle to his lanky body.
7. Utah Jazz: Kevon Looney SF/PF UCLA
Looney gives the Jazz a guy who is a monster on the boards. He shows good court vision and is a intelligent player and excellent passer. He is a bit of a tweener at the NBA level but is versatility and ability to stretch the floor with his three point game makes this a great pick to replace Kanter without sacrificing the cap space.
8. Denver Nuggets: Mario Hezonja SG/SF International
Heronja is a crafty all-around scorer. He also knows how to create his own shot and can operate effectively in one-on-one situations, Heronja needs to work on his effort on defense as that can be lackluster.
9. Indiana Pacers: Kristaps Porzingis PF International
Forgoing last years draft seems to have benefited Porzingis. He hasn’t really added anything to his game but has improved everything that he did before. He now is a consistent threat behind the arc and allows for the Pacers to space the floor better. With Luis Scola a free agent, and same thing for David West, the Pacers need to look at adding another big man. The downside to Porzingis is his lack of strength which doesn’t allow him to back his man down. He also needs to become more physical and get to the line more.
10. Boston Celtics: Willie Cauley-Stein C Kentucky
Boston has a glaring need for a rim protector and Cauley-Stein brings that. He excels on the defensive side of the ball and in recent weeks you have seen improvement of his offensive game. Cauley-Stein brings great energy to the game and has shown to be an excellent teammate over the years at Kentucky.
11. Detroit Pistons: Justise Winslow SG/SF Duke
Winslow is very good at defense, rebounding, passing, and has a high motor. Detroit has a hole now on its wings after trading their wings for Reggie Jackson and Tayshaun Prince. Winslow just knows how to score and he doesn’t need the ball in his hands to be effective.
12. Atlanta Hawks: Kelly Oubre SF Kansas
Oubre is an athletic, lengthy forward who has great scoring instincts. He will take some time to develop but on a contending team like the Hawks he will be able to grow and will have no rush to be a star player. With this developmental time, Oubre should develop into a solid all-around player at the next level.
13. Houston Rockets: Trey Lyles PF Kentucky
Lyles gives the Rockets an offensive big man at the four which they are desperately lacking. He has strong footwork and nice touch around the rim. Lyles is also a great passer for a big man. Defense still needs more work to effective at the next level.
14. Phoenix Suns: Caris LeVert SG Michigan
LeVert has excellent shooting abilities especially his outside game. He is also a great passer and his ability to drive allows for his teammates to get open and for him to hit for open shots. Although he suffered a season ending injury, he still has the talent to be a lottery pick due to his scoring, passing, and high basketball IQ.
15. Philadelphia 76ers: Delon Wright PG/SG Utah
Wright is one of those players in college basketball that could contribute right now in the NBA. He is a great effort player always doing what is asked of him. He is a good passer and good defender. He needs to improve his jump shot and his range as his three point accuracy is an issue (22% last year).
16. Charlotte Hornets: Frank Kaminsky C Wisconsin
With Al Jefferson having the ability to opt out of his contract this summer, the Hornets need to look into getting another center. The Hornets big men are not really good floor spacers and Kaminsky gives them a big man that can drain three’s much like Andrea Bargnani before injuries derailed his career. He also has a plethora of moves inside on the block. He is not an elite defender and often gets beat down low. Being a seven footer, Kaminsky does not dominate on the glass as one would expect with only average rebounding talent.
17. Milwaukee Bucks: Montrezl Harrell Louisville
Though a bit undersized, Harrell plays insanely hard and uses his length and athleticism to be a factor inside. Milwaukee could use a replacement for Ersan Ilyasova who could be a nice expiring contract to trade in the next seasons to get younger pieces to build around its nice stockpile of young talent.
18. Oklahoma City Thunder: Tyrus Jones PG Duke
With Reggie Jackson moving on, and DJ Augustin only being a role player, the Thunder can look for a guy in Jones that has terrific all-around point guard skills, an accurate shooter, even to the three point range, and sees the floor well and makes great passes to teammates. Very high basketball IQ. He is not an elite defender nor does he have good lateral quickness but his maturity for his age can help him learn these from the rest of his teammates making him a steal at this point.
19. Chicago Bulls: Jakob Poeltl C Utah
Poeltl has really emerged this year as a great defensive player. Funny how we are talking the Bulls and defense, well this year the defense has really been lackluster and with Joakim Noah and Taj Gibson dealing with nagging injuries a huge hole has emerged for another defensive big man. Poeltl is a bit of a project but allowing him to learn from Noah, Pau Gasol, and Gibson will greatly fastened his developmental process.
20. Washington Wizards: Sam Dekker SF Wisconsin
Dekker is an amazing athlete, with tremendous size for a wing. He has decent lateral quickness to guard the smaller wings of the game. Dekker needs to improve on his jumper and three point accuracy but his ability to finish at the rim is fantastic. He also plays physical allowing him to get to the foul line. He is a solid rebounder with an instinct of where the ball will be. Dekker will be a nice wing player for the Wizards as they look to add as much talent to their team as they look to add Kevin Durant in 2016.
21. Cleveland Cavaliers: Bobby Portis PF Arkansas
Portis is an inside/outside threat. He is not a flashy player, but he does hit the boards hard and really gets after it on defense which the Cavaliers could use. Portis really knows his limits and doesn’t force any shots. Knowing his limits has made him become a down-low guy and he can not spread the floor. All this being said Tristan Thompson is a impending free agent and the Cavaliers could look to replace him with a equally as talented players and for a cheaper price tag.
22. San Antonio Spurs: Christian Woods PF UNLV
Woods is a long, athletic forward who has taken a major jump this season for the Rebels. He is a bit of a project, but with development could be a huge reward for the Spurs who need to start stockpiling young talent as their future hall of fame player in Tim Duncan and key players such as Manu Ginobili and Tony Parker begin to retire.
23. Boston Celtics: Devin Booker SG Kentucky
Boston needs some players that can score and Booker is a lights out shooter. He is hitting 44.7% of his three’s this year and shooting 48.5% from the floor. Although the Celtics drafted James Young last year, I feel Booker is better and helps further along Boston’s rebuild.
24. Dallas Mavericks: Kris Dunn PG Providence
Dunn is a great athlete and quick to the ball, has a good first step, good pick and roll player, pinpoint passing, explosive in transition with the ability to consistently hit open shots. Dunn will help Dallas’s second unit maintain the offensive attack that the starting five has. The knocks for Dunn are him staying healthy and his ability to play both guard positions from a decision standpoint.
25. Toronto Raptors: Jerian Grant PG Notre Dame
The Raptors are selecting Grant here not based on potential but for his ability to step in and contribute for them as title contenders. Grant could step in and lead the second unit as he is a great passer and does not turn the ball over. With his vision, he is a great pick-and-roll man. Grant is also a very efficient scorer with only Jahlil Okafor, Montrezl Harrell and Sam Dekker finishing with better two point field goal percentages.
26. LA Lakers: Robert Upshaw C Washington
Upshaw has top twenty talent, but he did get kicked off the basketball team at Washington which leads for some red flags and for him to fall down some draft boards. The Lakers are a mess right now and could take a risk with Upshaw to upgrade their interior defense. When he was playing he was averaging 4.5 blocks while only playing 24.9 minutes. Adding a big man would allow the Lakers to use Jordan Hill as an expiring contract next year to potential get more picks to build their team up again.
27. Portland Trailblazers: Cliff Alexander PF Kansas
Alexander has a high motor and hits the glass hard. He plays with a ton of power. He has been pretty efficient around the rim but really needs to step out and work on his jumper. He is a bit undersized but is a hard worker. He will be a solid energy guy off the bench for the Trailblazers reinforcing their front court depth.
28. Cleveland Cavaliers: Justin Anderson SG/SF Virginia
The Cavaliers could look to get younger on the wing and Anderson is versatile and plays a well-rounded game. He has improved his three point accuracy greatly this past year. He is a stout defender who can guard multiple positions ranging from quick guards to holding his own in the post. Anderson may never become a star but he will be a good role player as long as he limits his turnovers and improves his ball handling.
29. Brooklyn Nets: RJ Hunter SG Georgia State
The Nets need to find some younger players that can score. Hunter comes from a small school but he can flat out shoot and score. Hunter also has a great feel for the game. Due to his school’s style of defense, it is hard to individual evaluate each player but he is long and could become a good defender. Although he is a good shooter he needs to learn when to shoot and not because he can become somewhat of a chucker at points and that hurts his team.
30. Golden State Warriors: George Lucas PG International
Many people will not know who George Lucas is, but he is a point guard from Brazil. George is very young (18) but would be a nice draft and stash prospect for the Warriors to groom to take over when Stephen Curry skill either declines or he moves on from Golden State. He is very raw but has tremendous size at 6’5 and a wingspan of 7’1. He could be defensive stalwart. When some NBA developmental help we could see him over in the states in the not to long future and he could be the next rising international star.
By: Mac Crowe @Mac_Truck17