2020 NBA Mock Drafts

  • # Team Player Pos
    1 LaMelo BallUSA PG
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: LaMelo Ball

    There's not a consensus No. 1 player in this class nor is there a surefire perfect fit for Minnesota, alongside D'Angelo Russell and Karl-Anthony Towns, available to them at No. 1. Going with the prospect with the biggest star potential in LaMelo Ball allows them to bet on talent and hope that his potential meshes with their roster and timeline.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Gifted playmaker with great court vision
    • Ambidextrous passer and finisher with good touch around the rim
    • High IQ and feel for the game -- knows where teammates are, anticipates where they are going, and can make high-level reads in pick-and-roll situations
    • Tight handle allows him to thrive in leading transition, running offense
    • Good positional size and frame

    WEAKNESSES

    • Inconsistent and sometimes puzzling shot selection and decision-making
    • Sometimes tries to make the highlight-reel play, as opposed to smart play
    • Low set point on jump shot, and troubling results overseas as deep shooter; mechanically the shot may need tweaked to get shot off consistently at NBA level
    • Shaky defender but potential to turn into a net neutral with expanded physical maturation

    PRO COMPARISON: Bigger Trae Young

    2 Anthony EdwardsGeorgia, Fr SG
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Anthony Edwards

    Recent reports have suggested the Warriors aren't high on LaMelo Ball (who went No. 1), James Wiseman (who is still available) or on drafting a center at this position, so by process of elimination, I've got Anthony Edwards going No. 2 here to Golden State. Athletic shot-maker who can play the wing and develop alongside a championship-caliber core but won't be called upon to be the go-to right away, which is an ideal situation for both parties as he learns the ropes and sharpens his decision-making.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Explosive athlete and leaper
    • One of youngest prospects in this class, and got into basketball late
    • Incredible shot-creation ability off the dribble
    • Good frame and strength given his youth
    • Long-term potential to grow into reliable offensive initiator with scoring upside

    WEAKNESSES

    • Questionable shot selection; often settled for shots at Georgia
    • Touch-and-go defensive motor
    • Volume scoring didn't significantly impact winning in college for mediocre UGA team

    PRO COMPARISON: Zach LaVine

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    33 19.1 5.2 2.8 40.2
    3 James WisemanMemphis, Fr C
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: James Wiseman

    Charlotte locks up the third of the big three prospects in James Wiseman and upgrades its center position in the process. The Hornets need to add versatility and length to their frontcourt, so Wiseman -- 7-foot-1 with a 7-foot-6 wingspan -- is a perfect remedy as they get bigger and more daunting down low.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Great size and length, with reported 7-foot-6 wingspan
    • Good lob finisher, can effectively run pick-and-roll as screen man at high level
    • Uses length and awareness to protect rim at high level

    WEAKNESSES

    • Shooting efficiency outside the paint a real question mark; only a floor-spacer in theory and needs to extend range and shoot outside consistently to meet ceiling
    • Touch-and-go motor dating back to high school days; only played three college games before leaving to train for NBA draft
    • Moves fluidly and can run the court, but struggles moving laterally and may struggle defending in space

    PRO COMPARISON: Chris Bosh

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    23 19.7 10.7 0.3 76.9
    4 Deni AvdijaIsrael SF
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Deni Avdija

    Chicago's really found something with Coby White and its frontcourt right now is plenty loaded with talent, so I think Deni Avdija is in play here. He's a playmaking wing with nice handles and an improving shot who could fit into this roster as a nice role player.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Strong playmaking ability for his position with good passing and initiating upside
    • Capable ball-handler who reads the court well and makes smart, precise passes; an asset especially when leading the break in transition opportunities
    • Crafty finisher around the basket with ability to finish with either hand and soft touch on floaters, reverses and point-blank looks

    WEAKNESSES

    • Average athlete with no real burst, but able to overcome limitations with smarts
    • More a floor-spacer in theory than in practice: Shot just 33.6% from 3 last year, and troublesome 52% from free throw line -- an indicator that improvement as a distance shooter may be difficult
    • Not a major threat to create havoc defensively either as a shot blocker or stealer, but overall a plus defender despite lateral limitations

    PRO COMPARISON: Danilo Gallinari

    5 Obi ToppinDayton, Soph PF
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Obi Toppin

    With Cleveland expending top-10 picks on guards in consecutive years with Collin Sexton and Darius Garland, they go big here -- literally -- to add weapons around them. Toppin is a freakish athlete and rim-runner who can give Sexton and Garland a can't-miss lob target who can step out and hit 3-pointers. He's got some deficiencies as a defender, but his upside as an all-around offensive weapon makes him plenty appealing enough to bet on at No. 5.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Dynamic athlete with incredible leaping ability; can impact the game playing above the rim (led college basketball in dunks last season)
    • Efficient shooter from inside the perimeter and effective from outside, too. He shot 41.7% from 3 during his time at Dayton.
    • Underrated passer and playmaker from his position who is quickly able to read defenses and make accurate passes when necessary

    WEAKNESSES

    • Limited mobility moving laterally will hinder his ability to defend on the perimeter and switch onto more mobile wings and forwards
    • Explosive leaper, but physically he will have challenges matching up against bigger forwards in the post in the NBA
    • Average rebounder, especially for a player his size and at his position

    PRO COMPARISON: Blake Griffin

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    31.7 20 7.5 2.2 63.3
    6 Tyrese HaliburtonIowa St., Soph PG
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Tyrese Haliburton

    A long, rangy and versatile guard, Tyrese Haliburton gives Atlanta a defensive playmaker who can mesh with Trae Young in the backcourt and also pack a punch as an offensive weapon with or without him on the court. At Iowa State he was the team's lead facilitator while consistently shooting the leather off the ball from distance, especially in spot-up situations, making him an appealing off-ball option with Young or even an initiator on the second unit.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • One of the most efficient guards as a scorer and facilitator
    • Deep shooting range that should translate to NBA 3-point line seamlessly
    • Savvy player on both ends of the court with high IQ/feel; very good passer who makes smart decisions and doesn't beat himself

    WEAKNESSES

    • Skinny frame that needs real physical development
    • Odd (but effective) shooting release; incredibly efficient in catch and shoot but a non-factor for now shooting off the dribble or moving

    PRO COMPARISON: Lonzo Ball

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    36.7 15.2 5.9 6.5 50.4
    7 Killian HayesFrance PG
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Killian Hayes

    Derrick Rose is coming off another productive season in Detroit, but he's entering the final year of his two-year deal and the Pistons could use an injection of youth at the point guard position. 19-year-old Killian Hayes helps them reset in that regard. He's one of the best lead guards in this draft (No. 2 overall in the CBS Top 100), thus selecting him at No. 7 presents excellent value.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Possesses great court vision and has passing skills to match it
    • Crafty with the ball in his hands and able to create off the dribble, both for himself and for teammates
    • Developing tool in his arsenal: a James Harden-like stepback move that's near-impossible to defend
    • Smooth, fluid left-handed release with great touch from deep and in the lane, at the free throw line and on floaters
    • Good positional size
    • Can read the game at a high level in an instant, making him a threat to thrive in the modern, pick-and-roll heavy NBA

    WEAKNESSES

    • Average athlete with no real burst to blow by defenders
    • Below average 3-point shooter; improved in EuroCup play, but larger sample suggests it could be a swing skill
    • Ambidexterity remains a work in progress; largely lefty dominant s a dribbler, passer and finisher

    PRO COMPARISON: Goran Dragic

    8 Patrick WilliamsFlorida St., Fr SF
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Patrick Williams

    In a perfect world for the Knicks, Killian Hayes or Tyrese Haliburton falls to them here. But when are things ever perfect for the Knicks? Instead, they go best available player and select raw-but-talented wing Patrick Williams, whose 6-8 frame and plus-wingspan has captivated scouts projecting what he can be long-term as a defensive playmaker and all-around offensive weapon. Think high-level role player with shot-making upside; not a splashy move but a safe selection.

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    22.5 9.2 4 1 45.9
    9 Onyeka OkongwuUSC, Fr C
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Onyeka Okongwu

    I've been projecting Okongwu to the Wizards for a while now for two reasons. No. 1: the fit next to Brad Beal and John Wall as a lob-finisher makes a ton of sense, and he'd be an upgrade defensively from Thomas Bryant. And No. 2: It seems like he may be the most likely big man to slip to this range because teams aren't necessarily prioritizing bigs in the 6-10 range. What's one team's pass would be Washington's win. Okongwu is the second-ranked big on our Top 100 and a borderline top-five prospect regardless of position because of his defensive versatility and efficient offensive game.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Quick, nimble feet with the ability to defend from the post to the perimeter
    • Good scoring and finishing ability, particularly around the rim; advanced post moves with a knack for carving out just enough space to thrive, even against bigger defenders
    • Has good touch as a passer and soft hands, allowing him to succeed in tight spaces and excel in pick-and-roll situations
    • Incredible shot-blocker with good timing; knows how to leverage his body to affect shots

    WEAKNESSES

    • 3-point shooting is not in his arsenal, though free throw percentages and shooting touch could portend well for that area of his game to develop
    • Fouled out thrice in 28 games as a freshman; sometimes over-eager to use his shot-blocking ability, leading to too many fouls, biting on up-fakes and being undisciplined
    • Slightly undersized for a modern-day big at 6-foot-9 especially given he will likely be a true post and pigeon-holed into one position in the NBA, though his reported 7-foot-1 wingspan helps. Adding weight to his frame and physically maturing (and his long, wiry arms) will help him overcome that physical disadvantage

    PRO COMPARISON: Bam Adebayo

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    30.6 16.2 8.6 1.1 61.6
    10 Isaac OkoroAuburn, Fr SF
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Isaac Okoro

    The expectation this offseason is that the Suns will look to add another point guard to their roster to pair alongside Devin Booker, but wing Isaac Okoro being available here would be tough to pass on. He's a physically mature athletic marvel who could step in as a multipositional defender right away, giving Phoenix another depth piece at wing to complement Mikal Bridges and Cam Johnson, both of whom present value in different ways.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Dynamic athlete with incredible leaping ability; can impact the game playing above the rim (led college basketball in dunks last season)
    • Efficient shooter from inside the perimeter and effective from outside, too. He shot 41.7% from 3 during his time at Dayton.
    • Underrated passer and playmaker from his position who is quickly able to read defenses and make accurate passes when necessary

    WEAKNESSES

    • Limited mobility moving laterally will hinder his ability to defend on the perimeter and switch onto more mobile wings and forwards
    • Explosive leaper, but physically he will have challenges matching up against bigger forwards in the post in the NBA
    • Average rebounder, especially for a player his size and at his position

    PRO COMPARISON: Blake Griffin

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    31.5 12.8 4.4 2 51.0
    11 Precious AchiuwaMemphis, Fr PF
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Precious Achiuwa

    A physical marvel at 6-9 with a plus-5 wingspan, Precious Achiuwa's defensive chops as a shot-disruptor and ability to defend multiple positions makes him a bona fide top-20 prospect in this class. There's some question about how his game will translate to the NBA as an offensive player -- he doesn't have great touch, and his perimeter skills lack polish -- but the Spurs are world-class talent developers who could see the physical tools and mold him into something special.

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    30.4 15.8 10.8 1 49.3
    12 Devin VassellFlorida St., Soph SF
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Devin Vassell

    The Kings need depth on the wing and a general upgrade on its defensive end of the court. Here, they can get both in Devin Vassell, a 3-point shooting, defensive specialist who can lock down opponents and hit open looks playing off the ball. He rated in the 80th percentile as a spot-up shooter last season and in the 95th percentile in off-screen offensive action, per Synergy. Low-usage, high-efficiency player who can fit next to De'Aaron Fox.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Long, rangy defender with great instincts and anticipation
    • Solid spot-up shooter with range; career 41.7% 3-point shooter in two seasons at Florida State
    • Energy player who impacts the game on both ends with defense, rebounding and hustle

    WEAKNESSES

    • Still needs to improve as a shot creator and maker, particularly off the dribble
    • Needs to improve his handles; average dribbler but can be predictably right-hand dominant, making his bland offensive moves easy to defend
    • Needs to add muscle and size to his frame; didn't get to the line consistently at FSU and didn't have the size to challenge bigs as a driver and slasher

    PRO COMPARISON: Robert Covington

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    28.7 12.7 5.1 1.6 49.0
    13 Aaron NesmithVanderbilt, Soph SF
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Aaron Nesmith

    To fully maximize Zion Williamson and Brandon Ingram, the Pelicans must continue surrounding them with shooters who can help space the floor, give them room to operate, and knock down shots when they're open. Nesmith is arguably one of the best pure shooters in this class with a smooth, quick release that helped him shoot 52.2% (!) from 3-point range at Vanderbilt last season.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Shooting, shooting, shooting; elite scorer from any distance and from any situation
    • Capable defender with the benefit of good positional size
    • 3-and-D -type player with ability to develop into a more dynamic offensive player

    WEAKNESSES

    • Coming off foot injury that cut his season short at Vanderbilt
    • Needs to improve as a shot creator; has potential but creating separation is not his strength
    • Could be a defensive liability -- somewhat limited athletically and moves just OK laterally

    PRO COMPARISON: Buddy Hield

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    35.7 23 4.9 0.9 51.2
    14 Kira Lewis Jr.Alabama, Soph PG
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Kira Lewis Jr

    Traded from: MEM

    Boston is overflowing with wings and its frontcourt depth is, at the very least, passable. So the Celtics can look towards a post-Kemba Walker era with an investment in the point guard position with Kira Lewis Jr. Still just 19 years old, he's a lightning-quick lead guard with an improved shot who, as his thin frame fills out, can give the team a boost to its lackluster depth at the position. And in time, he can perhaps be groomed to take the reins at the position.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Speedy guard who can pressure defenses with his attacking, downhill mentality
    • Because of his speed and elusiveness, can create shots for others and for himself, with an uncanny ability to create space
    • Streaky scorer and shooter at Alabama, but good overall shooting numbers and good shooting touch. Still managed to be pretty efficient despite a high usage rate.

    WEAKNESSES

    • Needs to add weight; good frame but tall and slender, and easily pushed around
    • Has just one gear with the ball in his hands: Top speed. At just 19 years old, he's still raw and learning how to switch gears, stop and go, and control pace.
    • Struggles at times defensively and may do so in the NBA because of his size.

    PRO COMPARISON: John Wall

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    37.6 18.5 4.8 5.2 45.9
    15 Saddiq BeyVillanova, Soph SF
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Saddiq Bey

    Jonathan Isaac is set to miss the entire 2020-2021 season for Orlando after sustaining a knee injury in the NBA's postseason bubble, leaving the Magic without one of its best and most versatile defenders. Saddiq Bey gives the franchise another similarly impactful defensive presence as they continue to build, as he guarded virtually every position in college. The way he knocks down 3-pointers at a high rate and can switch defensive roles with ease makes him a nice plug-and-play pick in this range.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Dead-eye shooter especially in catch-and-shoot and spot-up situations, and with quick load and release
    • Deep range: made 41.8% of his 308 3-point attempts in two seasons at Villanova
    • Versatile defender who can capably guard 1-4

    WEAKNESSES

    • Limited as a creator because of his loose handle
    • Moves well laterally and can defend at a high level, but not explosive; can he attack closeouts against NBA defenders? Can he switch 1-4 in the NBA?
    • Short and intermediate shooting needs work; shows great touch from deep but half court situations he struggled within 17 feet

    PRO COMPARISON: Tobias Harris

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    33.9 16.1 4.7 2.4 47.7
    16 Jalen SmithMaryland, Soph C
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Jalen Smith

    Portland is one of the most potent 3-point shooting teams in the NBA, so why not double down on what they're successful with? Jalen Smith is a lethal and versatile big who can affect shots around the rim with his length and make 3s at such a high clip that it'll help put further stress on opposing defenses on how to guard them.

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    31.3 15.5 10.5 0.8 53.8
    17 Cole AnthonyN. Carolina, Fr PG
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Cole Anthony

    Traded from: BKN

    We projected LaMelo Ball to Minnesota with pick No. 1, now we're projecting the Wolves to come back and double down on depth in the backcourt with Cole Anthony, a versatile scorer who can make shots in a variety of ways. Minnesota ranked in the bottom seven in the NBA in offensive rating last season and Anthony can help pack a punch to improve that as an off-bench gunner.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Score-first point guard who can play on or off the ball
    • Good defender who can move his feet and keep up with speedy guards with lateral quickness
    • Has an explosive first step, and can pressure defenses by attacking downhill

    WEAKNESSES

    • Concerning shot selection; willing to take any shot
    • Just-OK passer; may need to play alongside another initiator as opposed to serving as lead guard
    • Rated poorly across the board in pick-and-roll situations at UNC, as a passer and scorer, but has untapped potential there

    PRO COMPARISON: Austin Rivers

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    34.9 18.5 5.7 4 38.0
    18 R.J. HamptonUSA SG

    I'm coming around on RJ Hampton and moved him up 14 spots in my latest mock because, after an up-and-down NBL season, he's supposedly reworked his shot and sought help from Mike Miller in doing so this offseason. If the changes stick, Dallas can get a nice sized guard with good handles who can switch between the 1 and 2 and defend both positions. Still needs to add strength but the frame, raw talent and upside are undeniable.

    19 Aleksej PokusevskiSerbia C
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Aleksej Pokusevski

    Traded from: PHI

    Brooklyn's in a position where it needs to win now with K.D. and Kyrie, thus making this pick a long-view investment. Pokusevski is ultra-skilled with great positional size and rare passing, dribbling and scoring talents, but he's skinny, raw and unfinished. "Potentially significant contributor down the road," is how one scout described him to me. "But he's not ready."

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Floor-spacing big man with range from the post to the perimeter
    • Stunningly agile for his height with the skills to match: can run the break, pass at a high level and create
    • Good length and can affect the defensive side of the floor with his defensive playmaking and size

    WEAKNESSES

    • Skinny as a rail: only listed at a bit over 200 pounds, small for a 6-foot-9 big let alone a 7-footer
    • Not a good finisher in traffic and easily pushed off his spot with contact
    • Fluid athlete but not explosive; doesn't have great burst or leaping ability

    PRO COMPARISON: Dragan Bender

    20 Tre JonesDuke, Soph PG
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Tre Jones

    Not a splashy prospect, but Tre Jones is a menacing on-ball perimeter defender who can make smart reads and competently quarterback an offense. His decision-making and overall smarts added to a contending Miami team would be a luxury worth splurging on to ensure there's no significant dropoff from first to second units behind Goran Dragic, who the Heat are expected re-up with this offseason.

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    35.4 16.2 4.2 6.4 42.3
    21 Desmond BaneTCU, Sr SF
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Desmond Bane

    Traded from: OKC

    First-rounders aren't often spent on 22-year-old wings, but Bane should be a rare exception to that rule. He shot 43.3% from 3-point range on 575 attempts in college and rated in the 91st percentile, according to Synergy, as a spot-up scorer last season. With Philly in need of a reliable off-ball shooter who can drill deep bombs with regularity, he fits the bill of someone who, despite his age, should be worth buying into.

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    36.1 16.6 6.4 3.9 45.2
    22 Theo MaledonFrance PG
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Theo Maledon

    Traded from: HOU

    This is close to Maledon's floor, as his range seems to be in the 16-24 area. He's not a flashy or explosive guard, but he played on and off the ball for ASVEL last season and has an improving shot, which would add versatility and depth to a Denver backcourt that could use both.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Crafty scorer around the rim who plays with smarts, and can manufacture shots for himself and for others
    • Improving shooter, especially from distance
    • Versatile backcourt player, with the skill set to play either guard spot

    WEAKNESSES

    • Good speed dulled by lack of athleticism
    • Struggles to create space off the dribble
    • Average ball-handling ability; can easily get cornered by top defenders and needs to sharpen his handles with both hands

    PRO COMPARISON: Delon Wright

    23 Leandro BolmaroArgentina SF
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Leandro Bolmaro

    An intriguing draft-and-stash candidate from Barcelona's B team, Bolmaro has excellent positional size and playmaking ability off the bounce to boot. The Jazz tend to value jumbo playmakers who fit Bolmaro's archetype -- big wings who can pass and shoot -- and so this would be a relatively low-risk, high-reward selection that seemingly falls in line with the franchise's draft preferences.

    24 Tyrese MaxeyKentucky, Fr SG
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Tyrese Maxey

    Traded from: IND

    I'm much higher on Maxey than where I'm projecting him here, at No. 24, but shooting below 30% from 3-point range at Kentucky and struggling to really show he could be a primary distributor hurt his stock a bit. Nonetheless, he's an exceptional defensive presence with a smooth stroke and some untapped potential perhaps as a secondary playmaker. Even if that potential is never fully realized, he's safe enough to be a depth piece who dominates at the point of attack defensively.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Competitive guard who loves to get to the rim and can finish in myriad ways
    • Good shooting stroke and good touch around the basket, with a killer floater package
    • Elite on ball defender with great defensive instincts and long, wiry arms that disrupts the point of attack

    WEAKNESSES

    • Struggled to shoot consistently from 3-point range, 29.2% from 3 at Kentucky
    • Quick with the ball in his hands but struggles to carve space out; may need to play in a backcourt alongside an initiator as opposed to operating as a lead guard
    • Tabbed as a point guard but his lack of space-creation and average vision may pigeon-hole him into a two-guard role -- which he may struggle with if his shot doesn't improve

    PRO COMPARISON: Collin Sexton

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    34.5 14 4.3 3.2 42.7
    25 Jaden McDanielsWashington, Fr PF
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Jaden McDaniels

    Traded from: DEN

    The Thunder tend to prioritize athletic abilities and length over past production and pedigree, and Jaden McDaniels is just their type. Struggled a bit with consistency in his lone college season, but a long, rangy wing with a big wingspan who has sharp handles and some impressive shot-creation abilities. Developmental player who likely doesn't get out of the first round.

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    31 13 5.8 2.1 40.5
    26 Robert Woodard IIMiss. State, Soph SG
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Robert Woodard

    Boston comes back here after taking a point guard with its lottery pick to add big, strong wing prospect Robert Woodard to the fold. Raw but physically gifted, Woodard's got a recorded wingspan longer than 7-foot and he really made strides as a 3-point shooter as a sophomore. 3-and-D type of prospect with some upside.

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    33 11.4 6.5 1.3 49.5
    27 Isaiah StewartWashington, Fr C
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Isaiah Stewart

    Traded from: LAC

    The Knicks' future at center rests with Mitchell Robinson, but I dig the idea of adding Isaiah Stewart to this position's depth. Thunder and lightning type vibes. Stewart's a physically mature, big-bodied 19-year-old who can block shots and provide an imposing presence in the interior as a rebounder and finisher.

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    32.2 17 8.8 0.8 57.0
    28 Cassius WinstonMichigan St., Sr PG
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Cassius Winston

    The Lakers were in the bottom five among playoff teams this season in 3-point shooting, an inexcusable deficiency for a team built around LeBron James, Anthony Davis and the reliance of floor spacing. In Cassius Winston, the Lakers would add a career 43% 3-point shooter and a four-year college floor general who can step in to make smart decisions and drill open 3-pointers at a high rate.

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    32.6 18.6 2.5 5.9 44.8
    29 Malachi FlynnSan Diego St, Jr PG
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Malachi Flynn

    Surprise late-riser here with Malachi Flynn as he comes off a huge junior season for San Diego State. Killer two-way player who can lock in defensively and has just about every tool you want for a lead guard offensively. Led all of college basketball in win shares last season. The Raptors have shown they don't shy away from guards who may lack picturesque measurables so with Kyle Lowry nearing free agency and Fred VanVleet already there, might be smart to hedge against potential outgoing players in the near future with someone of his ilk.

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    33.5 17.6 4.5 5.1 44.1
    30 Xavier TillmanMichigan St., Jr PF
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Xavier Tillman

    Traded from: MIL

    A well-rounded center who sets hard screens, rebounds like he's 7-foot and acts as an interior anchor with an imposing physical presence, Tillman is a steal in this range for a team like Boston that could use frontcourt depth. He's a bit undersized for his position but does all the little things at a high level to affect winning.

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    32.1 13.7 10.3 3 55.0
  • # Team Player Pos
    1 LaMelo BallUSA PG
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: LaMelo Ball

    The Timberwolves could reasonably go any number of ways with the first pick. But, at this point, I think the most likely scenario has them taking the prospect with the highest upside -- which is, in my opinion, LaMelo Ball. I can acknowledge it's not a perfect fit. But it's still the best option for a franchise that's struggled to become relevant in the Western Conference even with an All-NBA talent like Karl-Anthony Towns in the middle. Towns has been in Minnesota five seasons and only played in five playoff games. That's awful. So perhaps Ball can be the key to changing that because, even though his shot-selection leaves a lot to be desired, the 6-foot-6 guard can already see things offensively, and do things offensively, that 99.9% of prospects his age cannot do. And that's why it's reasonable to conclude the good far outweighs any bad -- and predict that LaVar's youngest son has the talent to develop into an All-Star many times over.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Gifted playmaker with great court vision
    • Ambidextrous passer and finisher with good touch around the rim
    • High IQ and feel for the game -- knows where teammates are, anticipates where they are going, and can make high-level reads in pick-and-roll situations
    • Tight handle allows him to thrive in leading transition, running offense
    • Good positional size and frame

    WEAKNESSES

    • Inconsistent and sometimes puzzling shot selection and decision-making
    • Sometimes tries to make the highlight-reel play, as opposed to smart play
    • Low set point on jump shot, and troubling results overseas as deep shooter; mechanically the shot may need tweaked to get shot off consistently at NBA level
    • Shaky defender but potential to turn into a net neutral with expanded physical maturation

    PRO COMPARISON: Bigger Trae Young

    2 Anthony EdwardsGeorgia, Fr SG
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Anthony Edwards

    In previous versions of this mock draft I've had the Warriors selecting James Wiseman with the No. 2 pick. And they might actually do it (if they actually keep the pick, which remains undetermined). We'll see. But the more I think about it, the less sense it makes to spend the No. 2 pick on a traditional center when Golden State knows its most-effective lineup includes Draymond Green in the middle. So now I'm on board with the Warriors instead taking Anthony Edwards, the big, strong and athletic guard from Georgia who averaged 19.1 points and 5.2 rebounds in his one season with the Bulldogs -- but only shot 40.2% from the field and 29.4% from 3-point range. In other words, he was incredible in spots, but largely up and down and inefficient, for a team that was projected to miss the NCAA Tournament when the season was canceled. All things considered, Edwards was a little underwhelming. But the potential for stardom remains, in part because he's already physically mature despite being just 19 years old. The explosiveness he possesses, especially in transition, will serve him well while playing on or off the ball. And his special combination of size and quickness would allow him to guard three positions for a Golden State franchise trying to win big now.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Explosive athlete and leaper
    • One of youngest prospects in this class, and got into basketball late
    • Incredible shot-creation ability off the dribble
    • Good frame and strength given his youth
    • Long-term potential to grow into reliable offensive initiator with scoring upside

    WEAKNESSES

    • Questionable shot selection; often settled for shots at Georgia
    • Touch-and-go defensive motor
    • Volume scoring didn't significantly impact winning in college for mediocre UGA team

    PRO COMPARISON: Zach LaVine

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    33 19.1 5.2 2.8 40.2
    3 James WisemanMemphis, Fr C
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: James Wiseman

    The Timberwolves securing the No. 1 pick probably ended any real chance of James Wiseman going first overall because of the presence of Karl-Anthony Towns -- but it's hard to imagine him falling past Charlotte if he's available here because he's arguably the best prospect available and definitely somebody who fills a need. Are there questions connected to Wiseman? Of course. His decision to quit the Memphis team the week before Christmas, becoming the first healthy college player in history to quit midseason to "prepare for the NBA Draft," was not popular with some NBA front-office executives because they immediately wondered what kind of person would quit on his teammates midseason while healthy, especially when Zion Williamson refused to do it the year prior at Duke even when prominent voices were encouraging him to shut it down after he suffered a knee injury. So, yeah, there are some concerns. Regardless, Wiseman is simply too physically gifted to ignore in a draft lacking top-end talent. And if things break correctly, he could prove to be a franchise center and overwhelming presence for at least the next decade.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Great size and length, with reported 7-foot-6 wingspan
    • Good lob finisher, can effectively run pick-and-roll as screen man at high level
    • Uses length and awareness to protect rim at high level

    WEAKNESSES

    • Shooting efficiency outside the paint a real question mark; only a floor-spacer in theory and needs to extend range and shoot outside consistently to meet ceiling
    • Touch-and-go motor dating back to high school days; only played three college games before leaving to train for NBA draft
    • Moves fluidly and can run the court, but struggles moving laterally and may struggle defending in space

    PRO COMPARISON: Chris Bosh

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    23 19.7 10.7 0.3 76.9
    4 Obi ToppinDayton, Soph PF
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Obi Toppin

    Obi Toppin is a former zero-star recruit who earned CBS Sports National Player of the Year honors after averaging 20.0 points and 7.5 rebounds while shooting 63.3% from the field and 39.0% from 3-point range this past season. He's a super-athletic forward who dunks everything -- he actually led the nation in dunks -- and consistently makes jumpers in pick-and-pop situations. Yes, the fact that he's already 22 years-old is an issue worth taking into account. But it will not -- or, at least, it should not -- overshadow the idea that Toppin has a chance to be the most impactful player selected in this draft. In Chicago, he could easily play with Lauri Markkanen or Wendell Carter and immediately become another weapon for Zach LaVine and Coby White.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Dynamic athlete with incredible leaping ability; can impact the game playing above the rim (led college basketball in dunks last season)
    • Efficient shooter from inside the perimeter and effective from outside, too. He shot 41.7% from 3 during his time at Dayton.
    • Underrated passer and playmaker from his position who is quickly able to read defenses and make accurate passes when necessary

    WEAKNESSES

    • Limited mobility moving laterally will hinder his ability to defend on the perimeter and switch onto more mobile wings and forwards
    • Explosive leaper, but physically he will have challenges matching up against bigger forwards in the post in the NBA
    • Average rebounder, especially for a player his size and at his position

    PRO COMPARISON: Blake Griffin

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    31.7 20 7.5 2.2 63.3
    5 Deni AvdijaIsrael SF
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Deni Avdija

    Deni Avdija, a former Most Valuable Player of the FIBA Under-20 European Championship, should be the first non-American international prospect to come off the board. He's a 19-year-old Israeli who performed well for Maccabi Tel Aviv in games leading up to the season being suspended -- and then again after the season resumed. At 6-9, he's tall enough to play power forward and skilled enough to play on the wing. And his shooting has noticeably improved. So, according to most evaluators, Avdija now projects as a likely top-five pick -- one who would actually be a nice fit in Cleveland with Darius Garland and Collin Sexton in the backcourt.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Strong playmaking ability for his position with good passing and initiating upside
    • Capable ball-handler who reads the court well and makes smart, precise passes; an asset especially when leading the break in transition opportunities
    • Crafty finisher around the basket with ability to finish with either hand and soft touch on floaters, reverses and point-blank looks

    WEAKNESSES

    • Average athlete with no real burst, but able to overcome limitations with smarts
    • More a floor-spacer in theory than in practice: Shot just 33.6% from 3 last year, and troublesome 52% from free throw line -- an indicator that improvement as a distance shooter may be difficult
    • Not a major threat to create havoc defensively either as a shot blocker or stealer, but overall a plus defender despite lateral limitations

    PRO COMPARISON: Danilo Gallinari

    6 Onyeka OkongwuUSC, Fr C
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Onyeka Okongwu

    Onyeka Okongwu mostly operated off the national radar this past season because he played for an unranked team on the West Coast. But he was fantastic rather quickly -- averaging 16.2 points and 8.6 rebounds while shooting 61.6% from the field. He's the main reason USC won 16 of its first 20 games and would've been in the NCAA Tournament if the NCAA Tournament had been played. Is he an undersized big? Yes, probably. But he's an undersized big who can play multiple positions. And, either way, the NBA is now littered with undersized bigs. So even though Okongwu wasn't thought of this way coming out of high school, it's now reasonable to call him the second-best big prospect in the draft, one who could play, no problem, in Atlanta alongside John Collins or Clint Capela.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Quick, nimble feet with the ability to defend from the post to the perimeter
    • Good scoring and finishing ability, particularly around the rim; advanced post moves with a knack for carving out just enough space to thrive, even against bigger defenders
    • Has good touch as a passer and soft hands, allowing him to succeed in tight spaces and excel in pick-and-roll situations
    • Incredible shot-blocker with good timing; knows how to leverage his body to affect shots

    WEAKNESSES

    • 3-point shooting is not in his arsenal, though free throw percentages and shooting touch could portend well for that area of his game to develop
    • Fouled out thrice in 28 games as a freshman; sometimes over-eager to use his shot-blocking ability, leading to too many fouls, biting on up-fakes and being undisciplined
    • Slightly undersized for a modern-day big at 6-foot-9 especially given he will likely be a true post and pigeon-holed into one position in the NBA, though his reported 7-foot-1 wingspan helps. Adding weight to his frame and physically maturing (and his long, wiry arms) will help him overcome that physical disadvantage

    PRO COMPARISON: Bam Adebayo

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    30.6 16.2 8.6 1.1 61.6
    7 Isaac OkoroAuburn, Fr SF
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Isaac Okoro

    Isaac Okoro was only a borderline top-40 prospect coming out of high school in Georgia. But he quickly emerged, at Auburn, as one of college basketball's best freshmen this past season. The 6-6 wing averaged 12.9 points and 4.4 rebounds for Bruce Pearl's Tigers, who started 15-0 overall and finished 24-4 when Okoro was healthy and available to play. Auburn was just 1-2 without him in the lineup. So, in other words, he was a real difference-maker on both ends of the court. Okoro's athleticism and ability to shutdown opposing wings, thanks to unusually great defensive instincts for a 19 year-old, are, undeniably, his best attributes. And because Detroit could use a high-upside player who impacts winning in a variety of ways, Okoro should be the pick here provided he remains available outside of the top six.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Dynamic athlete with incredible leaping ability; can impact the game playing above the rim (led college basketball in dunks last season)
    • Efficient shooter from inside the perimeter and effective from outside, too. He shot 41.7% from 3 during his time at Dayton.
    • Underrated passer and playmaker from his position who is quickly able to read defenses and make accurate passes when necessary

    WEAKNESSES

    • Limited mobility moving laterally will hinder his ability to defend on the perimeter and switch onto more mobile wings and forwards
    • Explosive leaper, but physically he will have challenges matching up against bigger forwards in the post in the NBA
    • Average rebounder, especially for a player his size and at his position

    PRO COMPARISON: Blake Griffin

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    31.5 12.8 4.4 2 51.0
    8 Killian HayesFrance PG
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Killian Hayes

    The Knicks slipping to eighth in this draft is just deflating for the franchise. So unlucky. There's nothing good about it. New York went from dreaming about LaMelo Ball or Anthony Edwards to selecting ? Killian Hayes? On my board, at this point, he's the best available option. The 6-5 prospect is an American-born lead guard who was raised in France. So he's technically an American-born international prospect, one who has been playing professionally in Germany. He didn't turn 19 years-old until July. So Hayes is one of the youngest players in this draft. But, despite that, he has a high basketball IQ and reputation of somebody who just really knows how to play. Early this past season, Hayes turned the ball over a little too much, which is less-than-ideal for a primary ball-handler. But his assist-to-turnover ratio improved as the season progressed. So his ability to take care of the ball is not a real issue. Shooting is, though. Hayes shot below 30% from 3-point range this past season. That's not good enough from that position. But if he improves on that, and the guess here is that he will in time, Hayes will have a chance to live up to the hype that has him projected by basically everybody to go in the lottery.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Possesses great court vision and has passing skills to match it
    • Crafty with the ball in his hands and able to create off the dribble, both for himself and for teammates
    • Developing tool in his arsenal: a James Harden-like stepback move that's near-impossible to defend
    • Smooth, fluid left-handed release with great touch from deep and in the lane, at the free throw line and on floaters
    • Good positional size
    • Can read the game at a high level in an instant, making him a threat to thrive in the modern, pick-and-roll heavy NBA

    WEAKNESSES

    • Average athlete with no real burst to blow by defenders
    • Below average 3-point shooter; improved in EuroCup play, but larger sample suggests it could be a swing skill
    • Ambidexterity remains a work in progress; largely lefty dominant s a dribbler, passer and finisher

    PRO COMPARISON: Goran Dragic

    9 Tyrese HaliburtonIowa St., Soph PG
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Tyrese Haliburton

    Tyrese Haliburton, like Obi Toppin, is a good example of a mostly unheralded high school prospect who became a statistical monster in college. The 6-5 sophomore averaged 15.2 points, 6.5 assists and 5.9 rebounds while shooting 50.4% from the field and 41.9% from 3-point range this past season before suffering an injury in early February that ended his college career. So he's a lead guard with size who consistently makes shots. And there's not a franchise in the NBA, Washington included, that couldn't use a player who can reasonably be described that way.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • One of the most efficient guards as a scorer and facilitator
    • Deep shooting range that should translate to NBA 3-point line seamlessly
    • Savvy player on both ends of the court with high IQ/feel; very good passer who makes smart decisions and doesn't beat himself

    WEAKNESSES

    • Skinny frame that needs real physical development
    • Odd (but effective) shooting release; incredibly efficient in catch and shoot but a non-factor for now shooting off the dribble or moving

    PRO COMPARISON: Lonzo Ball

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    36.7 15.2 5.9 6.5 50.4
    10 Saddiq BeyVillanova, Soph SF
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Saddiq Bey

    The more I talk with front-office executives, the more I'm convinced Saddiq Bey has a chance to be a steal in this draft -- especially if he slips out of the top 10. The 6-8 forward was merely a sub-125 recruit in the Class of 2018, the least-heralded prospect in Villanova's four-player class. But he quickly developed into an intriguing prospect who averaged 16.1 points (while making 45.1% of his 3-point attempts) this past season for a Villanova team that shared the Big East title. He's versatile on both ends and an ideal wing prospect for the modern NBA.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Dead-eye shooter especially in catch-and-shoot and spot-up situations, and with quick load and release
    • Deep range: made 41.8% of his 308 3-point attempts in two seasons at Villanova
    • Versatile defender who can capably guard 1-4

    WEAKNESSES

    • Limited as a creator because of his loose handle
    • Moves well laterally and can defend at a high level, but not explosive; can he attack closeouts against NBA defenders? Can he switch 1-4 in the NBA?
    • Short and intermediate shooting needs work; shows great touch from deep but half court situations he struggled within 17 feet

    PRO COMPARISON: Tobias Harris

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    33.9 16.1 4.7 2.4 47.7
    11 Precious AchiuwaMemphis, Fr PF
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Precious Achiuwa

    The ceiling on Memphis' season was lowered drastically when James Wiseman quit, but it's hard to argue that Precious Achiuwa didn't personally benefit at least statistically. The super-athletic forward averaged 15.8 points and 10.8 rebounds -- and was the only freshman in the sport to average a double-double. He's terrific in transition, effective around the rim, comfortable away from it and capable of guarding smaller players in space. All of that, combined with a tremendous motor, should be enough to make Achiuwa a lottery pick even though there are legitimate questions about whether he'll ever be an effective offensive player or anything other than a small-ball center.

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    30.4 15.8 10.8 1 49.3
    12 Aaron NesmithVanderbilt, Soph SF
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Aaron Nesmith

    Aaron Nesmith only played 14 games as a sophomore at Vanderbilt before suffering a season-ending foot injury. So the sample size is on the smallish side, which isn't ideal. But it can't be ignored that the big-scoring guard made 52.2% of the 115 3-pointers he attempted last season. That's an incredible percentage that should translate well at the next level, where perimeter-shooting has never been more valued. Beyond that, Nesmith has great size for his position. He's 6-6. So he can maybe guard three different positions at the next level -- though his lateral quickness would need to improve for that. His ability to create shots on his own, to be an effective shot-creator, needs to improve as well. But a player with size who can really shoot it is an attractive option in the modern-NBA, especially for a franchise like Sacramento that presently has just an average 3-point shooting roster.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Shooting, shooting, shooting; elite scorer from any distance and from any situation
    • Capable defender with the benefit of good positional size
    • 3-and-D -type player with ability to develop into a more dynamic offensive player

    WEAKNESSES

    • Coming off foot injury that cut his season short at Vanderbilt
    • Needs to improve as a shot creator; has potential but creating separation is not his strength
    • Could be a defensive liability -- somewhat limited athletically and moves just OK laterally

    PRO COMPARISON: Buddy Hield

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    35.7 23 4.9 0.9 51.2
    13 Devin VassellFlorida St., Soph SF
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Devin Vassell

    Devin Vassell's numbers (12.7 points and 5.1 rebounds per game) don't jump off the screen, but that has more to do with playing at Florida State than anything else. The Seminoles had four players who averaged between 9.2 points and 12.7 points last season. So Leonard Hamilton's team was balanced at the top, possibly to the detriment of Vassell. Either way, what's important to note is that the 6-7 guard made 41.7% of his 168 3-point attempts over the past two seasons. And what that suggests is that he's a two-way wing who can sink jumpers reliably, which is among the reasons he makes sense for a New Orleans franchise that needs to surround Zion Williamson with as many shooters as possible

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Long, rangy defender with great instincts and anticipation
    • Solid spot-up shooter with range; career 41.7% 3-point shooter in two seasons at Florida State
    • Energy player who impacts the game on both ends with defense, rebounding and hustle

    WEAKNESSES

    • Still needs to improve as a shot creator and maker, particularly off the dribble
    • Needs to improve his handles; average dribbler but can be predictably right-hand dominant, making his bland offensive moves easy to defend
    • Needs to add muscle and size to his frame; didn't get to the line consistently at FSU and didn't have the size to challenge bigs as a driver and slasher

    PRO COMPARISON: Robert Covington

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    28.7 12.7 5.1 1.6 49.0
    14 Kira Lewis Jr.Alabama, Soph PG
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Kira Lewis Jr

    Traded from: MEM

    The fact that Kemba Walker is 30 years old and coming off of a disappointing postseason might have the Celtics looking at point guard options with this pick. If so, the best one available is probably Kira Lewis, who will still only be 19 years-old on the night of the draft. For what it's worth, his first college coach, Avery Johnson, absolutely loves him as an NBA prospect. That's a good sign, I think. And another good sign is that Lewis was really productive as a sophomore -- averaging 18.5 points, 5.2 assists and 4.8 rebounds for an Alabama team that finished 60th at KenPom. Beyond that, he made 48.8% of his 3-point attempts in the Crimson Tide's final seven games. So it appears Lewis can be a reliable, and perhaps terrific, perimeter shooter and thus a nice addition to Brad Stevens' Celtics.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Speedy guard who can pressure defenses with his attacking, downhill mentality
    • Because of his speed and elusiveness, can create shots for others and for himself, with an uncanny ability to create space
    • Streaky scorer and shooter at Alabama, but good overall shooting numbers and good shooting touch. Still managed to be pretty efficient despite a high usage rate.

    WEAKNESSES

    • Needs to add weight; good frame but tall and slender, and easily pushed around
    • Has just one gear with the ball in his hands: Top speed. At just 19 years old, he's still raw and learning how to switch gears, stop and go, and control pace.
    • Struggles at times defensively and may do so in the NBA because of his size.

    PRO COMPARISON: John Wall

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    37.6 18.5 4.8 5.2 45.9
    15 Cole AnthonyN. Carolina, Fr PG
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Cole Anthony

    Around this time last year, Cole Anthony was widely considered to be a candidate to be selected first overall in the 2020 NBA Draft. Now there's no guarantee he'll go in the top 20 because front-office executives are all over the place when it comes to projecting what Anthony will be at the next level. Will he become a big-scoring lead guard who impacts winning like Damian Lillard? Or will he be an inefficient scorer who produces empty stats for irrelevant teams? Some think the former. Some think the latter. As always, time will tell. But Orlando should be looking at point guard options with the 15th pick. And, if the Magic go that direction, Anthony makes as much sense as anybody and could ultimately prove to be a real steal just outside of the lottery.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Score-first point guard who can play on or off the ball
    • Good defender who can move his feet and keep up with speedy guards with lateral quickness
    • Has an explosive first step, and can pressure defenses by attacking downhill

    WEAKNESSES

    • Concerning shot selection; willing to take any shot
    • Just-OK passer; may need to play alongside another initiator as opposed to serving as lead guard
    • Rated poorly across the board in pick-and-roll situations at UNC, as a passer and scorer, but has untapped potential there

    PRO COMPARISON: Austin Rivers

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    34.9 18.5 5.7 4 38.0
    16 R.J. HamptonUSA SG

    R.J. Hampton's decision to skip college and play professionally for a team based in New Zealand last season contributed to the G-League creating a program for elite prospects -- and then aggressively pursuing them. So he's already made an impact on the sport, for better or worse. And let the record show the former five-star recruit was respectable in the NBL. He averaged 8.8 points, 3.0 rebounds and 2.4 assists per game. So Hampton skipped college, made a little money, and now he should be a top-20 pick based on his ability to play either guard spot and beat opponents off the dribble with a great first-step. Does his shooting need to improve? Yes, undeniably. The mechanics have long been a little off. But Hampton spent time in recent months with former NBA Rookie of the Year Mike Miller and reportedly reworked his approach. So that's an encouraging development and among the reasons Portland could use the 16th pick to add some backcourt depth that might help decrease the workload for Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum.

    17 Jalen SmithMaryland, Soph C
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Jalen Smith

    Traded from: BKN

    Not all legitimate NBA prospects who return for their sophomore seasons actually help themselves from a draft-stock perspective -- but Smith definitely did. The 6-10 big added strength, improved his field-goal percentage by 4.6 points, his 3-point percentage by 8.0 points and averaged more points, rebounds and blocks than he did as a freshman. The result was Maryland winning a share of the Big Ten title and Smith solidifying himself as a real first-round option. At the next level, Smith will likely play both the 4 and 5 -- point being he could theoretically play in lineups with Karl-Anthony Towns as long as he continues to improve as a shooter and becomes a reliable perimeter threat.

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    31.3 15.5 10.5 0.8 53.8
    18 Tyrese MaxeyKentucky, Fr SG
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Tyrese Maxey

    Tyrese Maxey enrolled at Kentucky with the reputation of a straight-killer -- somebody who could go and get 25 on just about anybody. And, in the season-opener, he looked the part. The 6-3 combo guard got 26 points in that November-win over Michigan State and showed lots of the things that made most assume he'd be UK's leading scorer. But, for much of the season, Maxey was inconsistent. He played more minutes than any other Wildcat. He took more shots than any other Wildcat. But Maxey was only third on the team in scoring. He shot just 42.7% from the field and a mere 29.2% percent from 3-point range. So Maxey's one year in college was a little disappointing relative to preseason expectations. But, regardless, he's still mostly projected as a top-15 pick because he does have elite-scoring attributes, presumably can be a better perimeter shooter than he showed at Kentucky, and is really good at finishing inside the arc in creative ways, mostly with an elaborate floater package. So, sure, there are questions here. But if Maxey reaches his potential he should be getting buckets in the NBA for a long time.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Competitive guard who loves to get to the rim and can finish in myriad ways
    • Good shooting stroke and good touch around the basket, with a killer floater package
    • Elite on ball defender with great defensive instincts and long, wiry arms that disrupts the point of attack

    WEAKNESSES

    • Struggled to shoot consistently from 3-point range, 29.2% from 3 at Kentucky
    • Quick with the ball in his hands but struggles to carve space out; may need to play in a backcourt alongside an initiator as opposed to operating as a lead guard
    • Tabbed as a point guard but his lack of space-creation and average vision may pigeon-hole him into a two-guard role -- which he may struggle with if his shot doesn't improve

    PRO COMPARISON: Collin Sexton

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    34.5 14 4.3 3.2 42.7
    19 Patrick WilliamsFlorida St., Fr SF
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Patrick Williams

    Traded from: PHI

    Patrick Williams is probably more of a long-term investment than he is an instant-impact rookie considering he'll barely be 19 years old on the night of the draft. He's a project. But the 6-8 forward measures well and was a key piece on a Florida State team that won the Atlantic Coast Conference regular-season title. He performed strongly down the stretch while scoring in double-figures in five of the Seminoles' final seven games. So, again, it's possible he won't help an NBA team much next season. But what Williams could become in a year or two is enough to generate attention in the back half of the first round, where somebody will be getting a player with enough upside that the decision to select him could pay off provided that the franchise that selects him is patient enough to wait on the return.

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    22.5 9.2 4 1 45.9
    20 Tre JonesDuke, Soph PG
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Tre Jones

    There's nothing too flashy about Tre Jones. He doesn't create many highlights nor is he a great shooter. But he remains a terrific run-the-team point guard who really defends on one end of the court, and really creates opportunities for his teammates on the other. He averaged 16.2 points and 6.4 assists last season -- and actually shot it well enough from the perimeter down the stretch to get his 3-point percentage up to a respectable 36.1. So there's enough good stuff about him to make him a real option here for Miami, especially considering Goran Dragic is 34 years-old and entering free agency.

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    35.4 16.2 4.2 6.4 42.3
    21 Theo MaledonFrance PG
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Theo Maledon

    Traded from: OKC

    Theo Maledon missed time with an injury while playing professionally in France last season and was mostly underwhelming -- although, in fairness, he played better as things progressed. But the talent that made him an interesting prospect at a young age -- he was the youngest LNB All-Star in history -- still exists. So Philadelphia, which is no longer committed to playing Ben Simmons at point guard, should seriously consider Maledon with the 21st pick, if he's available, because he would add a skilled lead guard to the roster Doc Rivers is inheriting.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Crafty scorer around the rim who plays with smarts, and can manufacture shots for himself and for others
    • Improving shooter, especially from distance
    • Versatile backcourt player, with the skill set to play either guard spot

    WEAKNESSES

    • Good speed dulled by lack of athleticism
    • Struggles to create space off the dribble
    • Average ball-handling ability; can easily get cornered by top defenders and needs to sharpen his handles with both hands

    PRO COMPARISON: Delon Wright

    22 Isaiah StewartWashington, Fr C
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Isaiah Stewart

    Traded from: HOU

    Isaiah Stewart was perhaps the only good thing about Washington's wildly disappointing season that culminated with the Huskies finishing last in the Pac-12. The 6-9 center led his team in points (17.0), rebounds (8.8) and blocks (2.1). He was great -- but how well will it translate at the next level? That's the question. And, for what it's worth, scouts acknowledge guarding in space could be a problem. But Stewart's high motor, incredible production, and better-than-some realize skill set should keep him in the top 20.

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    32.2 17 8.8 0.8 57.0
    23 Josh GreenArizona, Fr SG
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Josh Green

    Josh Green was one of three possible first-round picks on Arizona's roster this past season, which is among the reasons it was surprising that the Wildcats only finished tied for fifth in the Pac-12 standings. But some of it was tied to the freshman's inconsistency. The 6-6 wing showed flashes at times. He got 24 points in an early win over Pepperdine. He got 19 in the regular-season finale against Washington. But the truth is that Green is, at the moment, more advanced defensively than offensively, and there are real concerns about his ability to put the ball on the floor and pass it. So while his athleticism and toughness should get him picked somewhere late in the first round, the questions attached to Green could theoretically push him outside of the top 30, where somebody would be getting an explosive athlete and jumper but one who still needs to improve as a playmaker and passer.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Great positional size
    • Has potential to be able to attack closeouts, if handles improve can be an asset for him on offense
    • Very good, explosive athlete and leaper
    • Good defensive player with 3-and-D potential

    WEAKNESSES

    • Limited offensive arsenal right now; needs to improve as a passer, playmaker and ball-handler
    • Knows how to play his role, but not a creator and may never be more than a role player who can shoot, slash and score playing mostly off the ball

    PRO COMPARISON: Hamidou Diallo

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    30.9 12 4.6 2.6 42.4
    24 Nico MannionArizona, Fr PG
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Nico Mannion

    Traded from: IND

    Nico Mannion only shot 32.7% from 3-point range this past season, which obviously isn't great for a lead guard who has the ball a lot. But he's still an interesting talent because of his ability to make reads and run an offense. Is he athletic or physically impressive relative to current high-level NBA point guards? Not really. And that's a concern. But, in the simplest terms, I'm a believer in Mannion just figuring it out and working to find a long-term role in the league, and the Bucks could stand to add a traditional point guard to the roster led by two-time NBA MVP Giannis Antetokounpo.

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    32.3 14 2.5 5.3 39.2
    25 Jaden McDanielsWashington, Fr PF
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Jaden McDaniels

    Traded from: DEN

    Jaden McDaniels' freshman season did not go well. He was a disappointing team's most disappointing player -- one who led the Pac-12 in fouls. At one point, the 6-9 forward even got benched by his coach, Mike Hopkins. So it was just bad stuff on top of bad stuff on top of bad stuff. If McDaniels slips to the second round, that will be why. But Oklahoma City has so many first-round picks in upcoming drafts courtesy of the Clippers than the Thunder can afford to take a big swing on a naturally gifted prospect like McDaniels. If it's a miss, so what? But if it turns out well, it could be the type of thing that expedites OKC's rebuild in the post-Billy-Donovan era.

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    31 13 5.8 2.1 40.5
    26 Leandro BolmaroArgentina SF
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Leandro Bolmaro

    Boston has three first-round picks and almost no room on its roster. So the Celtics will either have to make some trades or stash a pick or both. And that's why Leandro Balmaro might be a great option here, if he's available. He's already committed to staying in Barcelona next season. So the 6-8 forward could be a draft-and-stash for a franchise that will be trying to return to the Eastern Conference Finals.

    27 Vernon Carey Jr.Duke, Fr C
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Vernon Carey Jr

    Traded from: LAC

    Vernon Carey would've been a top-10 pick if he were born 20 years earlier. But with unathletic centers devalued and sometimes unplayable in today's NBA, there are a lot of things working against the Duke star even though he was the best freshman in college basketball this past season while averaging 17.8 points and 8.8 rebounds for a team that finished fifth at KenPom. Will he be played off the floor by certain opponents in certain situations? Yes, that seems likely. But I'm still convinced there's a place for him in the NBA. And spending a late first-round pick on a wildly productive one-and-done player (who was also a heralded high school prospect) seems like a sensible move.

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    24.8 17.8 8.8 1 57.7
    28 Cassius WinstonMichigan St., Sr PG
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Cassius Winston

    Cassius Winston is perceived to be limited because he's small and not the best athlete. He'll never measure or test great -- and that'll turn some franchises away. But he's smart, great in pick-and-roll situations and someone who has proven to be a high-level shooter in all four years of college by making 43.0% of the 602 3-pointers he attempted in his four-year career. So he's perfect for a Lakers team that needs point guard help and could always use another shooter to help make LeBron James' job easier.

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    32.6 18.6 2.5 5.9 44.8
    29 Malachi FlynnSan Diego St, Jr PG
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Malachi Flynn

    Fred VanVleet is an unrestricted free agent who is about to get PAID. So the Raptors might need to prepare to replace him. If so, they could do a lot worse than to select this draft's VanVleet, i.e., a physically underwhelming point guard who really knows how to play, evidencing being that he won at a high level in college. And that player is Malachi Flynn. Is he tall and/or explosive? No. But Flynn really does have a lot of the same attributes that have helped VanVleet carve out a better-than-anybody-expected career. So I'm a believer in the former San Diego State All-American.

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    33.5 17.6 4.5 5.1 44.1
    30 Zeke NnajiArizona, Fr C
    2020 NBA Draft Analysis: Zeke Nnanji

    Traded from: MIL

    Zeke Nnaji was only a borderline top-40 prospect coming out of high school -- but he emerged as the biggest surprise of Arizona's freshman class. The 6-11 forward was Sean Miller's most productive player, one who averaged a team-high 16.1 points and a team-high 8.6 rebounds. He was a terrific part of an underwhelming team. Going forward, the best-case scenario has Nnaji developing into a power forward who can create space, rather than trying to be a full-time center, because he's not really a rim protector. We'll see how that goes. But the fast-developing prospect deserves real consideration this deep in the first round.

    Draft Prospect Outlook

    STRENGTHS

    • Young, raw talent with great size and coordination
    • Shows signs of being able to develop into a quality shooter
    • Tenacious rebounder

    WEAKNESSES

    • A mediocre shot blocker for a player of his size
    • Lacks the lateral quickness to guard most perimeter players
    • Was turnover prone as a freshman at Arizona

    PRO COMPARISON: Cody Zeller

    2019-20 College Stats

    MPG PPG RPG APG FG%
    30.6 16.1 8.6 0.8 57.0