2016 NBA Mock Draft 8.0

Now that the 2016 NBA Draft is here, I will do one last mock draft with my best guess to where all of the top prospects will go. There has already been a few big trades in the last 4 hours, so do not expect anything to stay quiet with all of the teams trying to better themselves for a championship. 

  1. Philadelphia 76ers- Ben Simmons PF LSU It was confirmed the other day that the Philadelphia 76ers had informed Simmons he would be the number one overall pick. This does create a log jam in the frontcourt, and will likely cause a few trades, but Simmons will prove to be worth it. Joel Embiid is the desired center you want to have next to Simmons, so with Okafor or Noel ou of the way, and as long as Dario Saric can handle playing the three, this pick should be very beneficial for the franchise.
  2. Los Angeles Lakers- Brandon Ingram SF Duke On Wednesday afternoon, reports surfaced that the Lakers informed Ingram he would be the second overall pick unless a drastic trade happened. The Lakers have probably the worst hole at the small forward position, so getting a pure scorer with off the charts defensive potential will help their efforts getting back to the playoffs. A young core of Ingram, Russell, Randle, Clarkson, and Nance is something for the fan base to stay excited about.
  3. Boston Celtics- Jaylen Brown SF California Boston is trying desperately to trade this pick, and have been in talks with Phoenix, Utah, Sacramento, and Milwaukee. No one has taken the bait, so I think Boston goes for a player with insane upside, and about the only player in the draft, who looks to have the defensive ability to at least slow down LeBron James. If offense should come with time, but for now he can back up Jae Crowder, and give great defensive minutes off the bench.
  4. Phoenix Suns- Dragan Bender PF International Phoenix is rumored to be enamored with Dragan Bender. He is a tremendous offensive player, who could emerge as one of the best prospects in the draft. However, I just do not see Bender being a huge defensive asset, and shooters are so hard to gauge coming overseas. In Phoenix with such a weak frontcourt, I think Bender will have a lot of room to grow, but I just do not believe the lofty expectations for him.
  5. Minnesota Timberwolves- Jamal Murray PG/SG Kentucky There has not been a lot of trade rumors swirling around Ricky Rubio lately, so I have to believe Minnesota would rather go with the better scorer. With an extremely weak bench, I think Minnesota would use Murray as a sixth man in his first season. Murray would provide the three point shooting, scoring, and leader off the bench the Timberwolves need to make it back to the playoffs.
  6. New Orleans Pelicans- Kris Dunn PG Providence Kris Dunn has been my favorite for the Pelicans for quite some time. Jrue Holiday provides a lot of trade value, and with a contract year coming up, I do not think New Orleans can pass on Dunn. Dunn provides the same capable passing skills, shooting, and leadership without the nagging injuries. New Orlean needs to surround Anthony Davis with young talent to build around, and quit wasting their effort on mediocre role players like they are currently doing.
  7. Denver Nuggets- Buddy Hield SG Oklahoma I think Denver decides to go best player available. Gary Harris has yet to prove he is a dominant player from the wing, while Hield looks to be a deadly three point shooter. In the Western Conference, teams can never have enough shooters, so improving their depth off the bench, or finding a possible starter is on the best interest of the Nuggets, who are looking to be a dark horse playoff contender next season.
  8. Sacramento Kings- Wade Baldwin IV PG Vanderbilt I am a really big fan of Wade Baldwin, which really sucks because I do not want him to go to this franchise. However, this is the only top player Sacramento has gotten him for a workout, and he fills a massive hole. Baldwin really needs to come of the bench his first season to continue developing his point guard skills, so maybe signing another year of Rajon Rondo could be beneficial for the Kings.
  9. Toronto Raptors- Marquese Chriss PF Washington Chriss is the biggest boom or bust prospect in the draft, and I am leaning to the latter. Toronto has the luxury to develop Chriss, and not force him on the court right away, which is the only way I see him succeeding. With Bismack Biyombo looking to get a big deal, adding another athletic defender to the mix is crucial. Chriss also has a way higher upside on offense, which makes resigning Biyombo not a priority.
  10. Milwaukee Bucks- Dejounte Murray PG Washington I am not sold on Murray at the next level, as he is a very raw point guard prospect, and his scoring is very inefficient. Milwaukee is rumored to be in love with Wade Baldwin, so expect them to try to be active to get ahead of the Kings. With Giannis Antetokounmpo likely manning the point this season, Murray could be the electric sixth man Milwaukee has been searching for.
  11. Orlando Magic- Jakob Poeltl C Utah Orlando has been rumored to love Poeltl, and I cannot blame them, I love him too. Orlando is looking for an option to beef up the bench when they take Nikola Vucevic off the court. Poeltl will serve as a great low post option off the bench, and can be a good to great defender with more development. With no real point guards left at this point, I just expect Orlando to go best player available.
  12. Atlanta Hawks- Skal Labissiere PF/C Kentucky Atlanta traded away Jeff Teague for the 12th overall pick, but are rumored to be shopping both their first round picks to try to keep cap space available to resign Al Horford. I do not think resigning Horford is going to get Atlanta over the hump. Embracing a rebuild with you talent is what they need to do.
  13. Phoenix Suns- Timothe Luwawu SG/SF International Phoenix needs to address their lack of depth at the small forward position. Luwawu has the ability to play either the two or three, and is a knockdown shooter. With T.J. Warren the current starter at small forward, Phoenix has the luxury of having Luwawu off the bench, until he likely takes over a starting role based off his two-way potential.
  14. Chicago Bulls- Henry Ellenson PF Marquette With the recent trade of Derrick Rose, Chicago could look to upgrade their point guard position, but there is no one better than what they have. Robin Lopez desperately needs a floor spacer next to him, and Ellenson has all the assets to be a stretch four at the next level. Even with Bobby Portis and Nikola Mirotic on the roster, this is best player available for Chicago, and fills a consistency need for the Bulls.
  15. Denver Nuggets- Deyonta Davis PF Michigan State Denver is rumored to be in advanced talks with the Minnesota Timberwolves for Kenneth Faried, so Davis will fill a new hole, but providing much higher upside. Davis is already the same caliber defender has Faried, but with a better, and developing offensive game. Denver already has a stuffed up frontcourt, but Davis is too good of a prospect for them to pass up, and I expect to to begin moving a few of the ones they already have.
  16. Boston Celtics- Domantas Sabonis PF Gonzaga Boston begins to start to address their frontcourt problems. Sabonis is an extremely efficient offensive player, who has the ability to consistently knock down jumpers, while being a tenacious rebounder. Boston will need this type of rebounding presence if they want to stand a chance against the Cleveland Cavaliers next season.
  17. Memphis Grizzlies- Furkan Korkmaz SG International Memphis has to address their lack of talent across the board. Korkmaz is ready to come over from Turkey, and can provide the shooting Memphis needs to become a contender again. Korkmaz also fits the defensive mold Memphis has built themselves around the past few seasons. If Memphis wants to try to keep cap space available, they can always use Korkmaz as a draft-and-stash for an extra year or two.
  18. Detroit Pistons- Brice Johnson PF North Carolina Of all of the Eastern Conference teams that faced up against the Cleveland Cavaliers, Detroit gave them the toughest test in the playoffs. Detroit just needed another consistent post threat, with a little nasty within him. Johnson will provide efficient offense, defense, and rebounding to give Detroit the needed edge off the bench when it comes to the playoffs. Adding a backup point guard cannot be ruled out either, as Detroit as a hole here.
  19. Denver Nuggets- Demetrius Jackson PG Notre Dame Demetrius Jackson looks to have the traits to be a backup point guard at the next level, and Denver could look to maximize their depth at the position with a cheap addition. Jackson can provide leadership, scoring, and distribution off the bench, and could serve as the push Mudiay needs to take the next step to stardom. A draft-and-stash player could be in the picture, so Denver is not forced to pay three first round contracts.
  20. Brooklyn Nets- Malik Beasley SG Florida State Brooklyn just traded away Thaddeus Young for the 20th overall pick, and a future second round pick. I had Indiana selecting Beasley, but he makes too much sense for the Nets as well. They need to add as many potential playmakers as they can, and Beasley has the making to be a great second-to-third option for an offense. Brooklyn has a bigger need for point guard, but there is just no one worth taking this high in the hypothetical draft.
  21. Atlanta Hawks- Malachi Richardson SG Syracuse I think this could be a little late for Richardson, and I have heard Atlanta at twelve for him is a strong possibility, but I just do not view him as that good. He is a shooter that battles a lot of consistency issues, but pairing him with a marksmen like Kyle Korver could teach him to become a deadly, efficient scorer. Atlanta needs to start adding talent across the board, and Richardson gives them a developing two-way player.
  22. Charlotte Hornets- Diamond Stone C Maryland With rumors swirling Charlotte is trying to get rid of Spencer Hawes, and using this pick to try to entice someone to take him, it hard to assume who they like in this draft if anyone. If they do decide to select a player, they could use a mauler in the frontcourt. Stone would be a great replacement for Al Jefferson, who is likely moving on to the highest bidder, and I do not think Charlotte values him that much.
  23. Boston Celtics- Damian Jones C Vanderbilt Boston continues to add to their frontcourt in this hypothetical draft. Jones showed great potential to be a dominant two-way player in a few games this past season, but other times showed a lack of interest in the game. If there is a coach who can get the best out of his players, Brad Stevens is the guy. Stevens could turn Jones into one of the biggest steals in the draft.
  24. Philadelphia 76ers- Denzel Valentine SG/SF Michigan State Philadelphia needs to add some more seasoned winners to their roster in order to change the losing culture in Philly. Valentine has had an extremely successful career at Michigan State, and adding him to the franchise will be a good start to rebuilding their bench depth. Valentine can lead their bench, stretch the floor, and give them decent defense.
  25. Los Angeles Clippers- DeAndre Bembry SF Saint Joseph’s The Clippers need to address their weakness at the small forward position. Bembry is a very efficient scorer, but does struggle from three. The Clippers will need to get him in the gym early and often, as they cannot afford to have non-shooters with the Warriors in their conference. Bembry projects as a good two-way player, just needs to be coached up a bit.
  26. Philadelphia 76ers-Thon Maker PF International Thon Maker is going to need at least two years to develop before he can contribute at the NBA level. Philadelphia already has a log jam in their frontcourt, so having a developmental piece is okay to see who pans out. Maker will also make a great trade piece if Philadelphia wants to pursue a backcourt member in the near future.
  27. Toronto Raptors- Ivica Zubac C International With two first round picks, Toronto can gamble on an international player. Zubac has a lot of work to do to diversify his game, but at only 19, he has plenty of time to change his game for the modern league. When Toronto does bring him over, he will serve as a bruiser in the paint, capable of a menace on the boards.
  28. Phoenix Suns- Tyler Ulis PG Kentucky Phoenix is trying desperately to unload either Brandon Knight or Eric Bledsoe since neither can work well together. Ulis has shown to be a true floor general in his two years at Kentucky. His size is his biggest weakness, but his ability to distribute, score, and defensive effort cannot be overlooked for a team who just needs to add talent.
  29. San Antonio Spurs- Cheick Diallo PF/C Kansas San Antonio needs to add some athleticism to their roster. Diallo still needs quite a bit of development, but Gregg Popovich and Tim Duncan will be excellent mentors to get the full potential out of Diallo. With the Spurs looking to contend for at least one more season with Duncan, they could look at another international player to keep their cap space as open as possible.
  30. Golden State Warriors- Guerschon Yabusele PF International Golden State was shown they need to add some depth to their frontcourt to contend in future final appearances. Yabusele is considered to French Draymond Green, due to his versatility. Getting him in Golden State could help him live up to his lofty expectations by learning from Green himself. Yabusele still needs another year or two in Europe to develop consistency, but Golden State is strapped for cash, so this makes the most sense for them.

By: Mac Crowe, @Mac_Truck17


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s