The college basketball season is now over and prospects are looking forward to the draft. Here is the 2018 NBA mock draft April 6.
1. Phoenix Suns- DeAndre Ayton, C, Arizona
Ayton has said it would be cool to play with Devin Booker and how good of a one-two punch it would be. The Suns have a nice crop of young wing players in Devin Booker, T.J. Warren and Josh Jackson, but they lack an inside presence. Ayton would give them that presence and then some. Ayton is a well-built and athletic big. He is a great rebounder, who often comes up with the ball with plenty of players around him.
2. Memphis Grizzlies- Marvin Bagley III, PF, Duke
The 6’11” big man is athletic and can do everything on a basketball court, which includes shooting from deep at 39.7%. While there have been some strains in the relationship between Marc Gasol and the organization, he should be on the team next season making Bagley fit in nicely next to him on the floor.
3. Atlanta Hawks- Mo Bamba, C, Texas
Dennis Schroeder is the best thing the Hawks have going for them and they need to find players on the interior to help him out. Bamba will be able to defend the paint, as he averages 5 blocks per 40 minutes. He has been compared to Rudy Gobert, with his good defense, and he’ll have to develop his offensive game.
4. Orlando Magic- Luka Doncic, G, Spain
Doncic has the size of a wing player in the NBA but actually plays on-ball a lot for Real Madrid. He stands 6’6″ and is an excellent passer and playmaker. His three-point shooting has gone down over the last few years, so Doncic will have to work on that. The Magic need good guard play and have a void after trading Elfrid Payton.
5. Dallas Mavericks- Michael Porter Jr., F, Missouri
The Mavs have guards and wings and now need some bigger players for the future. Dirk Nowitzki is the only really productive big on the roster and will be gone in a few years. Porter can play the three or the four for the Mavs. He came back from his back injury and was rusty, but showed flashes of why he was rated so highly coming out of high school.
6. Sacramento Kings- Jaren Jackson Jr., PF, Michigan State
Zach Randolph is the leading scorer on the Kings and is playing out his last few NBA years. By selecting Jackson, the Kings could replace Randolph and add another young player with potential to the starting lineup. Jackson has been a monster on the inside for Michigan State this season. Per 40 minutes, he is averaging 20 points and 11 rebounds per game. He also is a good rim protector.
7. Cleveland Cavaliers- Trae Young, PG, Oklahoma
Well, LeBron James has already talked about how good Trae Young is. The Cavs just got George Hill, but he is aging and could help develop Young. They can also play Young off-ball. Young brought life to college basketball with his electrifying play. He drives, passes and shoots like Steph Curry, but does turn the ball over too much. He also has struggled on defense, but the offense should make up for it.
8. Chicago Bulls- Mikal Bridges, SG/SF, Villanova
Bridges will walk in the door as a legitimate “3 and D” prospect but has a chance to develop into much more. He’s got good length but does need to add some more strength. The Bulls have some good guard play and Lauri Markkanen but could use a solid wing defender.
9. New York Knicks- Collin Sexton, PG, Alabama
The Knicks selected Frank Nitilikina last year and traded for Emmanuel Mudiay, but neither have been great. They’ll need a legitimate point guard if they are ever going to compete. Sexton is one of the best players available, who is able to drive and distribute the ball well.
10. Philadelphia 76ers- Kevin Knox, SF/PF, Kentucky
Knox is still deciding whether he will enter his name into the draft, but if he does, he is a lottery pick. The 76ers don’t have too many needs and can elect to take a player like Knox, who can be a key role player before potentially breaking into stardom.
11. Charlotte Hornets- Miles Bridges, SF, Michigan State
Bridges is an athletic wing who already has an NBA body. He can shoot and drive and could complement the two key pieces the Hornets do have in Kemba Walker and Dwight Howard.
12. Los Angeles Clippers- Wendell Carter, PF/C, Duke
Will DeAndre Jordan be with the Clippers much longer? He says he wants to be there, but they are rebuilding. Carter would present good value here and could play next to Jordan if the Clippers decide to keep him.
13. Denver Nuggets- Gary Trent Jr., SG, Duke
Denver has some good young players at almost every position and can take the best player available. Trent can provide even more shooting to a team that ranks fifth in the NBA in three-point percentage.
14. Los Angeles Clippers- Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, PG, Kentucky
He is a lanky point guard, who has a long wingspan, which helps him play good defense. SGA will need to work on his shooting and add some weight, but the length will get him selected early. The Clippers have Partick Beverly but need a point guard of the future.
15. Phoenix Suns- Anfernee Simons, PG/SG, USA
Simons has created some buzz after deciding to declare for the NBA Draft out of prep school. He can shoot and get to the basket well. The Suns will need a better point guard than Payton for the future.
16. Phoenix Suns- Lonnie Walker IV, SG, Miami
He hasn’t produced a lot in his freshman year at Miami, but shows flashes of potential, making him worthy of consideration here. The Suns can fill a few different needs with their first-round picks.
17. Washington Wizards- Robert Williams, PF/C, Texas A&M
Williams displayed what he is capable of in the NCAA Tournament. He has great athleticism for a big but doesn’t have the best motor. The Wizards need an inside player for John Wall and Bradley Beal to play off of.
18. Atlanta Hawks- Zhaire Smith, SG, Texas Tech
In the NCAA Tournament, Smith electrified the crowd with his dunks, but he can also hit the three-point shot at a high percentage of 45%.
19. Utah Jazz- Dzanan Musa, SG/SF, Bosnia and Herzegovina
The Jazz have some young pieces but could use another wing player. They can also afford to have a draft and stash if Musa fits that bill.
20. Chicago Bulls- Jontay Porter, PF/C, Missouri
Porter doesn’t get as much publicity as his brother but had a solid season at Missouri. They got a wing with their first pick and can now get some depth for the frontcourt.
21. San Antonio Spurs- Troy Brown, SG, Oregon
The Spurs will need better guard play with Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili winding down their careers. Brown is a tall, athletic guard, but doesn’t shoot well from three-point range.
22. Indiana Pacers- Khyri Thomas, PG/SG, Creighton
Indiana needs a point guard to add to Victor Oladipo and Myles Turner.
23. Philadelphia 76ers- Mitchell Robinson, C, USA
Robinson sat out this year to prepare for the draft after initially signing with Western Kentucky. The 76ers had depth at center for years when they were “trusting the process”, but now need to find someone behind Joel Embiid.
24. Minnesota Timberwolves- Grayson Allen, SG, Duke
Minnesota is 19th in the NBA in three-point shooting percentage and Allen can help them off the bench in that category.
25. Los Angeles Lakers- Caleb Martin, SG/SF, Nevada
Martin played well at Nevada this season and the Lakers could use more wing players.
26. Portland Trail Blazers- Brandon McCoy, C, UNLV
The Trail Blazers don’t have a lot of size and can get McCoy and help him develop.
27. Boston Celtics- Chimezie Metu, PF/C, USC
Boston should be better next year with all their players healthy, but don’t have many young bigs.
28. Golden State Warriors- Tony Carr, PG, Penn State
Carr broke through this season and now has a chance to be drafted in the first round. He is a big guard, who can shoot and take over for Shaun Livingston.
29. Brooklyn Nets- Moritz Wagner, PF/C, Michigan
The Nets need to acquire more talent but are stuck with the second to last pick in the first round. Wagner presents good value and could help fill their need of an interior player.
30. Atlanta Hawks- Jalen Brunson, PG, Villanova
Brunson won multiple Player of the Year awards. He is fundamentally sound and uses that to his advantage.