2014 NBA Draft: Round 1 Grades

by | CBSSports.com
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CBSSports.com NBA writer Matt Moore analyzes each pick from Round 1 of the 2014 NBA Draft, grading each team on its draft-night selections. Refresh this page during the round for the latest grades.

Complete coverage: 2014 Draft Tracker

PickGradeTeamAnalysis
1A+Timberwolves select: Karl-Anthony Towns, PF, Kentucky

The unquestionable best player in this draft, Towns is the total package at both ends and the kind of athletic, talented player that can change a franchise forever. TOTAL. MONSTER.

2A+Lakers select: D'Angelo Russell, SG, Ohio State

The second-best overall player, and the player more likely to be a true star. Russell is a game-changer in the modern NBA with his ability to score on and off ball, make plays in pick and roll and get up the floor. The modern NBA needs players like Russell. He is a Lakers-level star.

3A-76ers select: Jahlil Okafor, C, Duke

It's not who they wanted, but Okafor was the best player available. Philadelphia now has Nerlens Noel, Joel Embiid and Okafor. That's too many bigs. Something's got to give, but the Sixers didn't overthink this in terms of talent.

4AKnicks select: Kristaps Porzingis, PF, Latvia

With Okafor off the board, you have to go with the highest upside player here in Porzingis. Mario Hezonja would have been good here. Justise Winslow would have been good here, too. But neither possesses the upside. Porzingis will work in the triangle and can defend from day one.

5AMagic select: Mario Hezonja, SG, Croatia

I have concerns over drafting Hezonja and bumping Aaron Gordon to the four spot, but Hezonja also has the ability to be a superstar like Gordon never will. The Magic need scoring. They've got it now.

6A+Kings select: Willie Cauley-Stein, C, Kentucky

The Kings did something that should make DeMarcus Cousins happy, which is very good for all involved. There are red flags with Cauley-Stein, including questions about his offense. But putting him next to Cousins -- should they keep him -- would create a perfect duo that should work great under George Karl -- should they keep him.

7BNuggets select: Emmanuel Mudiay, PG, China

Mudiay is a higher-risk than others, and his shooting is problematic in the modern NBA, but he's going to have weapons on offense and will excel defensively under Mike Malone.

8B+Pistons select: Stanley Johnson, SF, Arizona

Passing up on Justise Winslow seems crazy and drops this to a B-range pick; however, Johnson's overall skill set seems like a great fit for Stan Van Gundy's system. High-upside player, even if Winslow might be better in the long run.

9CHornets select: Frank Kaminsky, C, Wisconsin

He doesn't fit with Al Jefferson and doesn't have nearly as much upside as others available. They were stuck with how the draft fell, but Kaminsky doesn't simply project as well as so many other prospects. It's a fine pick but far from great.

10A+Heat select: Justise Winslow, SF, Duke

Everything comes up Pat Riley. If Dwyane Wade stays, they've got a competent defensive three that can do everything and gives them great long-term options. If Wade goes, they've got a defensive stalwart and solid player to go with Goran Dragic (if he re-signs). Win-win here for the Heat -- somehow, someway.

11DPacers select: Myles Turner, C, Texas

I like Turner, but the Pacers need offense and in a big way. He's raw. I get the pick as it opens them up to move Roy Hibbert, but why just repeat the same situation? Is Turner's upside as high as Hibbert's? With their woeful offense and plenty of talented guards on the board, this is not awesome. I like Turner; I just don't like him in Indiana.

12DJazz select: Trey Lyles, PF, Kentucky

You have Derrick Favors. You want Paul Millsap. Lyles obviously has great upside and the Jazz can make some gambles here, but it's hard to see why they decided to further complicate an already complicated frontcourt.

13BSuns select: Devin Booker, SG, Kentucky

Good value here for Booker, and he fills a big need for the Suns. Just having a shooter like that will open up things for the rest of their roster, and they're deep enough to not have to worry about his lack of versatility.

14C+Thunder select: Cameron Payne, PG, Murray State

Not a great finisher at the rim, but he will run the pick and roll at a high level. It's a fine pick, nothing spectacular.

15AHawks select: Kelly Oubre Jr., SF, Kansas

Oubre has a lot of downside, but the Wizards -- which have acquired this pick and player from the Hawks via trade -- don't need him to hit out of the park. If he works out, it's amazing. If not, they're good enough to survive. You wonder what this means for Paul Pierce.

16FCeltics select: Terry Rozier, PG, Louisville

What? No. Just. No. You have... I mean... Isaiah Thomas? I mean... Marcus Smart? What is this? No. Fail. Go away.

17B+Bucks select: Rashad Vaughn, SG, UNLV

It's definitely a need-based pick, and they got a quality shooter with Vaughn. He can put the little leather ball into the circle with the attached net, so I like this move for Milwaukee.

18DRockets select: Sam Dekker, SF, Wisconsin

With point guard talent still on the board, it's not a terrific fit. He's got some things he can do, but where does he fit on the Rockets without being able to shoot or defend at a high level?

19B-Wizards select: Jerian Grant, PG, Notre Dame

Is he a great fit for the Triangle? Probably not perfect, but it's a position of need for the Knicks, which acquired Grant via trade with the Hawks, who acquired it earlier in the evening from the Wizards. He's smart, a combo guard, and they only gave up Tim Hardaway Jr. Not bad for a team that needs young talent.

20B-Raptors select: Delon Wright, PG, Utah

They need guard depth after trading Greivis Vasquez. He's a big guard, and that's great, but he's awful off the dribble. Their offense will struggle with him on the floor. Great defensively, though.

21AMavericks select: Justin Anderson, SF, Virginia

Terrific value at a position of need: 3-and-D and his shot mechanics don't scare me. Anderson has great size at 6-foot-6 with a 7-foot wingspan. It's a great pick up, and the Mavs needed him there.

22A+Bulls select: Bobby Portis, PF, Arkansas

PORTIS SMASH ALL. PORTIS STRONGEST HULK OF ALL. OK, seriously: Portis is a monster from all over the floor. They have lots of good bigs, but Portis is too good to pass up and he gives them options in the frontcourt. Even if the fit isn't great, the value is just right.

23CTrail Blazers select: Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, SF, Arizona

They need high upside and RHJ has that, but he's raw to the point of being scary and may not be able to play for several years. We still don't know enough about how he will develop to fully evaluate this pick. Reportedly headed to Brooklyn in a draft-night trade.

24ACavaliers select: Tyus Jones, PG, Duke

Jones is a smart player that can run the offense in Minnesota, which is reportedly acquiring this pick from Cleveland. With the kind of talent the Wolves will have, it's great to have a floor general which Jones projects to be.

25C-Grizzlies select: Jarell Martin, PF, LSU

They're not missing out on any great prospects, but with Jarnell Stokes and Zach Randolph, why would the Grizzlies need more size? Meanwhile, R.J. Hunter was available, and Memphis will continue its search for shooters.

26A+Spurs select: Nikola Milutinov, C, Serbia

This is an A+ because it's the Spurs. No matter what he can or cannot do -- he's a big who does big things with good athleticism and solid work ethic -- you can bank on San Antonio coming away with a good player in the draft. The Spurs, after all, are the Spurs.

27C-Lakers select: Larry Nance Jr., PF, Wyoming

Hard worker, but there's nothing they can really do with him given their direction. We'll see if they keep him long-term.

28B+Celtics select: R.J. Hunter, SG, Georgia State

Just what they needed ... 12 picks earlier when they took Rozier. Hunter is a great shooter with length who should give them some flexibility to make moves with their backcourt.

29BNets select: Chris McCullough, PF, Syracuse

A functional big. Honestly, he's not about to fall apart, so that makes him a good addition for the Nets.

30AWarriors select: Kevon Looney, PF, UCLA

Great value here no matter the red flag with his hip. And hey, playing for the defending champion is a pretty good consolation prize after Looney's very unfortunate drop.









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