The 2021 NBA Draft is in the books. As expected, the Detroit Pistons got the busy night started by selecting Cade Cunningham, the do-it-all guard out of Oklahoma State. He had been the presumptive top pick ever since Detroit won the Draft Lottery last month, and got the No. 1 pick for the third time in franchise history.
Rounding out the rest of the top five were Houston picking G League star Jalen Green at No. 2, Cleveland going with USC's Evan Mobley at No. 3 and the Raptors, in a surprise, taking Florida State's Scottie Barnes at No. 4 before Orlando grabbed Gonzaga's Jalen Suggs at No. 5
As always there were a number of trades on the night, and you can keep track of all the movement below. You'll also find draft grades for all 60 picks, and can see how your favorite team did.
Here are some key takeaways from the night:
Pistons get Cunningham
This pick has pretty much been locked in since the Pistons won the Draft Lottery a few months ago, but now it's official. Cade Cunningham is on his way to Detroit. He's just the third No. 1 overall pick in franchise history, and if he has a career anything like the last guy they took in this spot -- Hall of Famer Bob Lanier -- the Pistons will be in great shape for years to come.
A 6-foot-8 guard out of Oklahoma State, Cunningham is one of the most complete prospects to enter the league in sometime, and has drawn comparisons to Luka Doncic because of his all-around ability to control the game. He can pass, he can shoot, he defends, he does it all. Perhaps the only criticism is that he's not going to blow you away with athleticism. But you don't need to do that when you're as skilled as Cunningham.
The talent is the most important thing, of course, but it helps that Cunningham is already embracing the city.
"I've already been listening to Detroit music and things like that way before the draft lottery or any of that stuff," he said earlier this month. "If Detroit picks me, that's the main thing I would try to do: step in and embody the swag that people from Detroit walk with, the people from Michigan in general. They kind of have an underdog go-get-what-you-want feel to them, and I like that about the city."
Rockets stock up with four first rounders
The Rockets are in full rebuilding mode after trading James Harden and Russell Westbrook last offseason, and it didn't take them long to get started. They already had three first-round picks entering the night, including No. 2 overall, and then traded for another to wind up with four. That was more than any other team on the night, and accounted for 13.3 percent of the entire first round.
First up, they went with Jalen Green out of the G-League. Despite being just 19 years old, he didn't have much trouble adjusting to the pro level, and put up an impressive season for Ignite. A truly explosive athlete who can score at all three levels, Green has a chance to be a real star in this league, and should bring plenty of excitement to Houston.
Later on in the night they took Alperen Sengun out of Turkey at No. 16, Usman Garuba from Spain at No. 23 and Josh Christopher out of Arizona State at No. 24. Sengun was an analytics darling and the MVP of the Turkish League last season. Garuba, who played for Real Madrid and is currently in Tokyo at the Olympics, is an elite defender and has had success playing at a high level. Christopher could be more of a project, but he can score the ball and will provide depth in the backcourt.
There's still a long way to go before the Rockets can be a playoff team again, but after this draft there's some real reason for hope in Houston.
Warriors keep their picks (for now)
Heading into the draft, the Warriors were one of the main teams that everyone was tracking. They were one of only two teams with multiple lottery picks, but it was clear from all of the rumors and reports that they were desperately trying to trade those selections for a star or player(s) who could help the team right away.
Nothing materialized, so they ended up keeping the picks, and took Jonathan Kuminga out of the G-League at No. 7, and Moses Moody from Arkansas at No. 14. Kuminga is a very talented and athletic wing, but he's generally seen as a longterm project after a disappointing season with Ignite. Moody, on the other hand, should be able to help right away as a 3 & D wing.
The Warriors were in an interesting spot here. From a pure talent perspective, Kuminga was impossible to pass up, and Moody might end up being the steal of the draft considering where they got him. In terms of maximizing value in the draft, the Warriors had a great night. In terms of maximizing the final few years of Steph Curry's prime, however, it's not so clear.
Between Kuminga and James Wiseman, they've made two lottery picks in the last two years who probably won't make a meaningful impact for years to come. And Moody is no guarantee either, though he's less of a project. Even though the Warriors made the picks, don't be surprised if any of these players end up on the move after all.
2021 NBA Draft selections
|1||Detroit|| Cade Cunningham | Okla. St. | PG||31||Milwaukee |
| Isaiah Todd | USA | PF|
|2||Houston|| Jalen Green | G League | SG||32||New York (to Oklahoma City)|| Jeremiah Robinson-Earl | Villanova | PF|
|3||Cleveland|| Evan Mobley | USC | C||33||Orlando (to LA Clippers|| Jason Preston | Ohio | PG|
|4||Toronto|| Scottie Barnes | Florida St. | SF||34||Oklahoma City (to New York)|| Rokas Jokubaitis | Lithuania | PG|
|5||Orlando|| Jalen Suggs | Gonzaga | PG||35||New Orleans|| Herbert Jones | Alabama | SF|
|6||Oklahoma City|| Josh Giddey | Australia | SF ||36||Oklahoma City |
(to New York)
| Miles McBride | West Virginia | PG|
|7||Golden State|| Jonathan Kuminga | G League | SF||37||Detroit |
| JT Thor | Auburn | PF|
|8||Orlando|| Franz Wagner | Michigan | SF||38||Chicago|| Ayo Dosunmu | Illinois | SG |
|9||Sacramento|| Davion Mitchell | Baylor | PG||39||Sacramento|| Neemias Queta | Utah St. | C |
|10||New Orleans |
| Ziaire Williams | Stanford | SG||40||New Orleans |
| Jared Butler | Baylor | PG |
|11||Charlotte|| James Bouknight | UConn | SG||41||San Antonio|| Joe Wieskamp | Iowa | SG|
|12||San Antonio|| Joshua Primo | Alabama | SG||42||Detroit|| Isaiah Livers | Michigan | PF |
|13||Indiana|| Chris Duarte | Oregon | SG||43||New Orleans |
| Greg Brown | Texas | PF |
|14||Golden State|| Moses Moody | Arkansas | SG ||44||Brooklyn|| Kessler Edwards | Pepperdine | SF |
|15||Washington|| Corey Kispert | Gonzaga | SF||45||Boston|| Juhann Begarin | Guadeloupe | SG|
| Alperen Sengun | Turkey | C||46||Toronto|| Dalano Banton | Nebraska | SF |
(to New Orleans)
| Trey Murphy III | Virginia | SG||47||Toronto|| David Johnson | Louisville | PG |
|18||Oklahoma City|| Tre Mann | Florida | PG||48||Atlanta|| Sharife Cooper | Auburn | PG |
|19||New York |
| Kai Jones | Texas | PF ||49||Brooklyn|| Marcus Zegarowski | Creighton | PG |
|20||Atlanta|| Jalen Johnson | Duke | SF||50||Philadelphia|| Filip Petrusev | Serbia | C |
|21||New York (to LA Clippers)|| Keon Johnson | Tennessee | SG||51||Memphis|
(to LA Clippers)
| Brandon Boston Jr. | Kentucky | SG |
| Isaiah Jackson | Kentucky | PF||52||Detroit|| Luka Garza | Iowa | C |
|23||Houston|| Usman Garuba | Spain | PF||53||New Orleans|
| Charles Bassey | WKU | C |
|24||Houston|| Josh Christopher | Arizona St. | SG||54||Indiana |
| Sandro Mamukelashvili | Seton Hall | C |
(to New York)
| Quentin Grimes | Houston | SG ||55||Oklahoma City|| Aaron Wiggins | Maryland | SF|
|26||Denver|| Nah'Shon Hyland | VCU | PG||56||Charlotte|| Scottie Lewis | Florida | SG |
|27||Brooklyn|| Cameron Thomas | LSU | SG||57||Charlotte |
| Balsa Koprivica | C | Florida St.|
|28||Philadelphia|| Jaden Springer | Tennessee | PG||58||New York|| Jericho Sims | Texas | C|
| Day'Ron Sharpe | UNC | C||59||Brooklyn|| RaiQuan Gray | Florida St. | PF|
| Santi Aldama | Loyola-Md. | PF||60||Indiana |
|Georgios Kalaitzakis | F | Greece |