The NBA draft is around the corner and the excitement grows the closer we get. The No. 1 pick in the draft in the minds of many is pretty much locked for DeAndre Ayton. There are other things to take into consideration pending the Suns trading away that No. 1 pick. As of now, here is our mock draft over at the Utility Man.
1. Suns: DeAndre Ayton
The Phoenix Suns have a future super star at the guard position, and a former top four pick at the forward position. At this point in their franchise, it does not make sense to draft Real Madrid’s Luka Dončić, they do not need another wing. What they need is a dominant big man, one they have been looking for for years. When your best case scenario as a franchise is having the next Shaq and Kobe, you take it.
2. Kings: Luka Dončić
It has been twelve seasons since the capital of California made the playoffs, and they finally caught some luck this year, getting the second overall pick in the draft. There’s no going wrong with this pick, the Suns have to select whoever is left between Dončić and Ayton, and it looks like it is going to be Dončić. The Slovenian looks like the most perfect fit, a starting five with De’Aaron Fox, Bogdan Bogdanović, Dončić, and Buddy Hield coming off the bench, would be great for today’s positionless game. Although the Kings should not look at a big guy, because of their depth at the center and forward position, they will probably try to bite at Marvin Bagley III, but will eventually decide on the second best player on the draft.
3. Hawks: Marvin Bagley III
Dennis Schröder has already said he wants out of Atlanta, meaning the Hawks need a young player who they can see themselves building a team around him, since Schröder might get traded soon. The Hawks should draft a guard to replace Schröder, which is why if Dončić falls to them they will definitely take him. But as long as everything goes accordingly with the first two picks, they will have a heck of a frontcourt with Taurean Prince, John Collins, and Marvin Bagley III, not only athletic, but all able to stretch the floor too.
4. Grizzlies: Jaren Jackson Jr.
Mike Conley got signed to a five year, $153 million dollar contract two years ago by the Memphis Grizzlies, and Marc Gasol still has two more seasons left in his, meaning if Robert Pera did not trade them this season before the trade deadline, he will not get rid of them this year either. They will not draft a guard or a big man who are is going to take minuets away from them, that being said, their best option is JJJ, he is big guy out of Michigan State who is viewed as a slow prospect, he will take a couple years to develop, which perfectly fits the Grizzlies timeline, they could make Gasol teach the young guy up until his contract ends.
5. Mavericks: Mohamed Bamba
The Mavs roster already has a franchise player in Dennis Smith Jr. Dirk Nowitzki, and a small forward earning a lot of money in Harrison Barnes, who apparently they do not want to get rid off. They are in need of a big man to replace Nerlens Noel and Dirk when he retires. What other best pick and roll duo than Smith Jr. and Bamba?
6. Magic: Trae Young
Orlando has given up their last two guards, both who ended up being better with their new teams. Trae Young might be the player with the most upside in this year’s draft, and his also a point guard, the Magic cannot pass this up. Maybe it makes sense to the Magic’s front office to draft a big, long, athletic prospect, which is what they usually go for, but at this point it makes no sense, with already having Aaron Gordon, Jonathan Isaac and Nikola Vučević. Shooting is what more makes sense for Orlando, and shooting is all Trae Young brings.
7. Bulls: Michael Porter Jr.
The Bulls should pick the best player available at this spot, and Michael Porter Jr., before his injury, was arguably the best player in this draft class. It fits the Bulls plans, having young players such as Kris Dunn, Zach LaVine, Lauri Markkanen, and Michael Porter Jr. in your roster, makes your franchise look like a pretty smart one after trading Jimmy Butler.
8. Cavs: Wendell Carter Jr.
Dan Gilbert and company are going to have a lot of problems and decisions to make this offseason, from LeBron James, to Rodney Hood, to the 8th pick in the draft. It all depends on whatever decision LeBron makes, they can either trade the pick or keep it, a decision that falls on LeBron. They will either select Wendell Carter Jr. or Collin Sexton, it is a tossup.
9. Knicks: Collin Sexton
The Knicks are used to making bad decisions, so do not expect much from them on draft night. They got lucky with Kristaps Porziņģis, they will need luck and a point guard or wing on draft night. They will take a hard look at Miles Bridges but will eventually select Collin Sexton because of his attitude, the Alabama guard has shown his tough, specially on the 3 on 5 game he played during the season. And that is what New York is all about.
10. 76ers: Mikal Bridges
The Sixers got more than enough talent right now with Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid, what they need now is fit more than anything. They should target the best fit, which Mikal Bridges, a player who will always know his role since he was three years at Villanova, winning two national championships there. He would be a great fit next to Covington and Embiid, even if they do not plan on using him, he can still be a great trade asset, along with Markelle Fultz.
11. Hornets: Miles Bridges
Michael Jordan has to make a decision, does he finish cleaning the house by trading Kemba Walker, Nicolas Batum, Dwight Howard, and company, or does he try and gain entry to the playoffs to lose in the first round again? This pick will answer that question, if they draft Bridges, that means they will decide to move on from Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Marvin Williams, Batum and their hideous contracts. The franchise needs a culture reset, and it starts by trading Walker and drafting Bridges.
12/13. Clippers: Robert Williams III/Shai Gilgeous-Alexander
Turns out like the Clippers did end up winning that Blake Griffin trade, they gained the 12th and 13th picks in the draft, selections they should use on their possible DeAndre Jordan divorce, by choosing the athletic big man Robert Williams III out of Texas A&M. They also just signed Lou Williams to a new contract, but all their point guards are old and without an improvement on sight, and that is where Shai Gilgeous-Alexander comes in, a young point guard who has potential to be a really good facilitator in this league, and who else to learn from than Miloš Teodosić?
14. Nuggets: Kevin Knox
It took years for Gary Harris and Jamal Murray to finally show what they are going to be capable on for years in this league, therefore there is no reason to draft a guard. They also have the best passing big man in basketball in Nikola Jokić, their just short a wing player from the playoffs, Knox will pretty much be a glue guy, a younger Wilson Chandler. This is not a deep draft, but finding a bench player capable of putting minutes on a playoff team is good enough for Denver.
15. Wizards: Lonnie Walker IV
16. Suns: Anfernee Simmons
17. Bucks: Keita Bates-Diop
18. Spurs: Zhaire Smith
19. Hawks: Aaron Holiday
20. T-Wolves: Chandler Hutchison
21. Jazz: Bruce Brown
22. Bulls: Mitchell Robinson
23. Pacers: Jacob Evans III
24. Trail Blazers: Khyri Thomas
25. Lakers: De’Anthony Melton
26. 76ers: Grayson Allen
27. Cetlics: Donte DiVincenzo
28. Warriros: Jalen Brunson
29. Nets: Tyus Battle
30. Hawks: Trevon Duval
What do you guys think of this mock draft? Tweet us what you think @TheUtilityMan17! We’d love to here from you guys!!