With the draft just one day away, this is my last mock draft. Hopefully, I get some picks right.
1. Minnesota Timberwolves – Karl-Anthony Towns, University of Kentucky, Power Forward
He is still No. 1 on my board. There is just no reason for Minnesota to pass on him. I think he is the best player in the draft.
2. Los Angeles Lakers – Jahlil Okafor, Duke University, Center
The Lakers are said to be choosing between Okafor and D’Angelo Russell. While I really like Russell, I believe the Lakers will go with Okafor.
3. Philadelphia 76ers – D’Angelo Russell, Ohio State University, Point Guard
Russell is the real deal and might become the best player in this draft. He is that talented.
4. New York Knicks –Justise Winslow, Duke University, Small Forward
Winslow would be an interesting get for the Knicks. For them to draft him, they would have to move down a few slots.
5. Orlando Magic – Kristaps Porzingis, Latvia, Power Forward
I still think No. 5 is too high for Porzingis, but some teams get cold feet.
6. Sacramento Kings – Emmanuel Mudiay, Guangdong, Point Guard
Kings need a point guard, even though they have Darren Collison. It’ll be interesting if they trade DeMarcus Cousins.
7. Denver Nuggets – Mario Herzonja, Croatia, Shooting Guard
Herzonja has had a lot of people talking about him, in positive ways. I don’t see Denver passing on him.
8. Detroit Pistons – Stanley Johnson, University of Arizona, Small Forward
I think Johnson brings too much to the table for the Pistons to leave him on the board. While Greg Monroe will more than likely leave the team, Johnson fits a need at small forward.
9. Charlotte Hornets – Devin Booker, University of Kentucky, Shooting Guard
I could see Booker moving up a spot or two. He could become the best player in this draft. He also fits a need that Charlotte needs: shooting.
10. Miami Heat – Sam Dekker, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Small Forward
It has been reported that Dekker might be headed to Detroit. Who knows? We will find out. I don’t think he’ll slip past the Heat.
11. Indiana Pacers – Willie Cauley-Stein, University of Kentucky, Center
Apparently an ankle injury has to yet to fully heal, and that is what is dropping Cauley-Stein’s draft stock. Outside of the top five, I still think teams would be stupid to pass on him.
12. Utah Jazz – Kelly Oubre, Kansas University, Small Forward
The Jazz needs more wing depth. I think Oubre could learn some things from another great, young wing – Gordon Hayward.
13. Phoenix Suns – Frank Kaminsky, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Power Forward/Center
I think Indiana would be foolish to pass on Kaminsky, but I don’t think he’ll slide past Phoenix.
14. Oklahoma City Thunder – Bobby Portis, University of Arkansas, Power Forward
The Thunder badly needs a shooting guard, but passing on Portis could haunt them down the road. Plus, Billy Donovan coached against him.
15. Atlanta Hawks (from Brooklyn) – Kevon Looney, University of California-Los Angeles, Small/Power Forward
Looney could provide help at two positions – small forward and power forward – giving the Hawks more versatility.
16. Boston Celtics – Trey Lyles, University of Kentucky, Power Forward
ˆThe Celtics need a little more depth and athleticism up front, and Lyles brings that to the table.
17. Milwaukee Bucks – Robert Upshaw, University of Washington, Center
Upshot makes a big leap up the board. He is a player, if he can stay out of trouble, who could help a playoff team.
18. Houston Rockets (from New Orleans) – Cameron Payne, Murray State University, Point Guard
The Rockets need a point guard, but not one that focuses on scoring. Payne is a good facilitator, and can give James Harden a ball-handling break. Not to mention, Payne averaged 20 points per game, too.
19. Washington Wizards – Myles Turner, University of Texas, Center
Alex Len is still a project, but there is no reason the Suns should pass on Turner, unless they believe a remaining wing player is more of a need.
20. Toronto Raptors – Justin Anderson, University of Virginia, Small Forward
The Raptors need a reliable small forward, and Anderson could become that guy.
21. Dallas Mavericks – Tyus Jones, Duke University, Point Guard
The Rajon Rondo experiment didn’t work out. Jones is a point guard who can run the show, and is a wonderful teammate. I think Jones could move up in the draft, though, to Houston at No. 18.
22. Chicago Bulls – Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, University of Arizona, Small Forward
The Bulls have a lot of questions before next season gets started. One of their main priorities will be drafting or signing a small forward.
23. Portland Trail Blazers – Montrezl Harrell, University of Louisville, Power Forward
A lot of signs are pointing toward LaMarcus Aldridge leaving. Harrell could be an inspired replacement.
24. Cleveland Cavaliers – Rashad Vaughn, University of Nevada-Las Vegas, Shooting Guard
Vaughn got hurt halfway through the season. J.R. Smith and Iman Shumpert will command more money than both are getting paid this season. Vaughn can score the basketball.
25. Memphis Grizzlies – R.J. Hunter, Georgia State University, Shooting Guard
Outside shooting is something the Grizzlies lack. Hunter can help caulk the hole.
26. San Antonio Spurs – Chris McCullough, Syracuse University, Power Foward
A knee injury crashed his superb freshman season with Syracuse. A lot of scouts said he would have been a lottery pick, so it wouldn’t surprise me if San Antonio drafted another great player late in the draft.
27. Los Angeles Lakers (from Houston) – Jerian Grant, University of Notre Dame, Point Guard
Jordan Clarkson was pretty good in his rookie season. We will see if it was a fluke. The Lakers would be smart to take some insurance at the point guard spot.
28. Boston Celtics (from Los Angeles Clippers) – Terry Rozier, University of Louisville, Point Guard
Rozier is a first-round talent, there is no question about it. It’s still surprising to me that a lot of mock drafts leave him out of the first round.
29. Brooklyn Nets (from Atlanta) – Christian Wood, University of Nevada-Las Vegas, Power Forward
The Nets need help at every position. They only have one draft pick this year, but Wood is a good player.
30. Golden State Warriors – Delon Wright, University of Utah, Point Guard
While the Warriors have the MVP (Steph Curry) at point guard and the team, as whole, is deep, there is never such a thing as being too deep.