The NBA regular season is now way behind in the rearview mirror and teams who aren’t in contention for the title are looking ahead to next year. Here is how the NBA Draft could look come June.
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, 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. Dallas Mavericks- Luka Doncic, G, Slovenia
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 Mavs have Dennis Smith Jr. so they will have to play with two play-makers on the floor, which isn’t a bad thing.
4. Atlanta Hawks- Michael Porter Jr., F, Missouri
Porter can play the three or the four for the Hawks. 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. The Hawks need to take the best player available regardless of position.
5. Orlando Magic- Trae Young, PG, Oklahoma
The Magic need good guard play and have a void after trading Elfrid Payton. 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.
6. Chicago Bulls- Collin Sexton, PG, Alabama
Sexton is one of the best point guards in the class and is able to drive and distribute the ball well. This ability would fill in well with Lauri Markkanen for the future of the franchise.
7. Sacremento Kings- Wendell Carter, PF/C, Duke
Zach Randolph started at power forward this season, but likely doesn’t have much more left in the tank. Carter can play the four and the five and presents a player who can even stretch the floor with his shooting.
8. Cleveland Cavaliers- Mo Bamba, C, Texas
Tristan Thompson’s contract is awful and the Cavs need a legitimate inside presence. 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.
9. New York Knicks- Kevin Knox, SF, Kentucky
Knox has good size and can shoot well. He is inconsistent though, as he can go off in some games and disappear in others. The Knicks need to take the best player available in this draft regardless of position.
10. Philadelphia 76ers- Mikal Bridges, SG/SF, Villanova
Ben Simmons has shown that he can make all the plays for the offense. The 76ers need to surround him with shooters. 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.
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- 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.
13. Los Angeles Clippers- 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 Clippers could use another productive big with the departure of Blake Griffin.
14. Denver Nuggets- Gary Trent, 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.
15. Washington Wizards- Lonnie Walker, PG/SG, Miami
Walker doesn’t fill the biggest need for the Wizards, but he is a good value here. He didn’t produce a lot in his freshman year at Miami, but shows flashes of potential, making him worthy of consideration here.
16. Phoenix Suns- Anfernee Simmons, 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.
17. Milwaukee Bucks- Mitchell Robinson, C, USA
Robinson sat out this year to prepare for the draft after initially signing with Western Kentucky. Milwaukee could use a young developmental big.
18. San Antonio Spurs- Khyri Thomas, PG, Creighton
The Spurs need a point guard to take over and lead the team. Thomas can get his own shots but needs to learn how to set his teammates up better.
19. 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%.
20. Minnesota Timberwolves- Donte DiVincenzo, SG, Villanova
The Timberwolves need to spread the floor more and find some good shooters. DiVincenzo fits that bill and is also extremely athletic.
21. 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.
22. 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 guard with their first pick and can now get some depth for the frontcourt.
23. Indiana Pacers- Troy Brown, PG/SG, Oregon
Brown is a tall, athletic guard, but doesn’t shoot well from three-point range. He needs some development but could be a good player next to Victor Oladipo.
24. 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.
25. Los Angeles Lakers- Moritz Wagner, PF/C, Michigan
Wagner is a bit of a matchup problem with his size and shooting ability and can benefit from playing with Lonzo Ball.
26. Philadelphia 76ers- Grayson Allen, SG, Duke
The 76ers have their playmaker in Ben Simmons and can continue to help spread the floor for him to make plays with this pick.
27. Boston Celtics- Trevon Duval, PG, Duke
The Celtics have good point guard play, but who knows how much longer they can keep Terry Rozier in a bench role after his performance in the first round of the playoffs.
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- Chandler Hutchison, SG/SF, Boise State
Hutchison was a star at Boise State who did a little bit of everything for the Broncos. With the right coaching, he can turn into a solid NBA 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.