As the 2020 NBA Draft draws closer, we still don't have much of an idea of whose name commissioner Adam Silver will call first. The top three picks are generally considered to be (in no particular order) Anthony Edwards, LaMelo Ball and James Wiseman, but there have also been reports about teams not liking each of them for different reasons.
Because of that, we've heard a lot of talk about teams trading out of the top three, and that's exactly what the Minnesota Timberwolves do in my latest mock draft. The Detroit Pistons are kicking off a rebuild nearly from scratch, and the prospect of adding Ball, a potential franchise point guard, was too much for them to pass up.
And just for you, since the real draft is almost a week away, we've extended this mock draft to two rounds. You're welcome in advance.
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Mock Trade from Minnesota Timberwolves
Round 1 - Pick 1
The Timberwolves reportedly want to trade down, and the Pistons reportedly want to trade up with a close eye on Ball, so this makes sense. The deal could look something like No. 1 and James Johnson for No. 7, Detroit's 2022 first-round pick (maybe with protections) and Tony Snell. That way the Wolves get a win-now piece and a future asset, while the Pistons get a potential franchise player to commence the rebuild without losing their pick in next year's loaded 2021 draft class.
Round 1 - Pick 2
Memphis • Fr • 7'0" / 244 lbs
The Warriors shouldn't overthink this. Wiseman fills an immediate need as a rim protector/lob catcher and creates a bridge to the future with his tremendous upside -- exactly what Golden State is looking for.
Round 1 - Pick 3
Round 1 - Pick 4
We don't know what the new Bulls front office will do with their young players, so adding Avdija makes sense given his positional versatility and ability to play with or without the ball.
Round 1 - Pick 5
Southern California • Fr • 6'8" / 245 lbs
Some consider Okongwu to be the best big prospect in the draft -- yes, better than Wiseman -- and Cleveland is in desperate need of his defensive ability. The offensive upside makes him a strong addition for the rebuilding Cavs.
Round 1 - Pick 6
Iowa State • Fr • 6'5" / 175 lbs
Atlanta has loaded up on wings in recent drafts, so it makes sense for them to draft a guard who can take some of the ball-handling duties off of Trae Young's shoulders. Haliburton can also play off the ball with his shooting ability, which is an added bonus.
Mock Trade from Detroit Pistons
Round 1 - Pick 7
Isaac Okoro SF
Auburn • Fr • 6'5" / 225 lbs
The Wolves need to get serious about defense, and Okoro will bring that immediately from the wing. His offensive upside is questionable, but his athleticism should make him a terror in transition and as a slasher next to Karl-Anthony Towns and D'Angelo Russell.
Round 1 - Pick 8
Hayes may take a few years to develop, and that's OK because the Knicks won't be ready to contend any time soon. The 6-5 point guard is the No. 2 overall prospect on our Kyle Boone's Big Board, so he's well worth the risk at No. 8.
Round 1 - Pick 9
Obi Toppin PF
Dayton • Fr • 6'9" / 212 lbs
The Wiz showed a willingness to go all-in on offense, and Toppin is just the kind of talent that can help in that department. The big man can serve as both a rim-runner and a pick-and-pop threat, opening up all sorts of possibilities next to Bradley Beal and John Wall.
Round 1 - Pick 10
Florida State • Fr • 6'5" / 195 lbs
The Suns made tremendous defensive strides last season, and adding a 3-and-D piece like Vassell will only improve things on that end. Offensively, Vassell should be able to make spot-up 3-pointers right away, with potential to do much more if they can develop him.
Round 1 - Pick 11
Florida State • Fr • 6'7" / 227 lbs
Williams isn't quite as polished as the other 3-and-D prospects on the board, but he has arguably the most upside and the Spurs have a track record of developing talent. Williams would be a nice fit next to the young backcourt of Dejounte Murray and Derrick White.
Round 1 - Pick 12
Vanderbilt • Fr • 6'5" / 215 lbs
With the futures of Buddy Hield and Bogdan Bogdanovic uncertain in Sacramento, adding a flat-out knock-down 3-point shooter like Nesmith makes a lot of sense to space the floor for De'Aaron Fox and Marvin Bagley.
Round 1 - Pick 13
Saddiq Bey SF
Villanova • Fr • 6'7" / 215 lbs
Bey will immediately be able to space the floor on offense and guard multiple positions, exactly what the Pelicans need around Zion Williamson and Brandon Ingram.
From Memphis Grizzlies
Round 1 - Pick 14
Alabama • Fr • 6'1" / 170 lbs
Lewis is in the top 10 on my board, so the Celitcs would be lucky to snatch him up here. The blazing quick point guard's development could be accelerated by learning from Kemba Walker, who pretty much embodies Lewis' ceiling as an NBA player.
Round 1 - Pick 15
Round 1 - Pick 16
Memphis • Fr • 6'8" / 235 lbs
The Blazers would love if one of the wing prospects like Vassell, Bey or Nesmith would fall to them at 16, but if that's not the case then they should take Achiuwa to shore up their defense and rebounding. He also has the potential to become an effective 3-point shooter.
From Brooklyn Nets
Round 1 - Pick 17
If the Wolves trade down from No. 1, they could take a big swing later in the draft with Hampton, a potentially elite scorer who struggled in the Australian NBL last season.
Round 1 - Pick 18
Desmond Bane SF
TCU • Fr • 6'5" / 215 lbs
The more shooters you can put next to Luka Doncic the better, and Bane certainly fits the bill. With an NBA-ready frame, he should be able to hold his own on the defensive side as well.
From Philadelphia 76ers
Round 1 - Pick 19
Tyrese Maxey SG
Kentucky • Fr • 6'2" / 191 lbs
Maxey profiles as a combo guard who's more of a scorer than an initiator, but his talent on both sides of the ball is undeniable. Some consider him a lottery talent, so Brooklyn will be happy if he's still sitting on the board at No. 19.
Round 1 - Pick 21
Grant Riller PG
College of Charleston • Fr • 6'2" / 190 lbs
I really like Riller for the 76ers as an NBA-ready combo guard who can use his strength and ball-handling to initiate offense and get buckets. He's also a capable off-ball 3-point shooter to help give Philly some much-needed floor spacing.
From Houston Rockets
Round 1 - Pick 22
Stanford • Fr • 6'2" / 170 lbs
Terry profiles as a potentially elite off-the-dribble 3-point shooter who has tremendous offensive upside. He may not help right away given his slight frame, but the Nuggets have proven that patience pays off if you find the right talent.
Round 1 - Pick 23
Tre Jones PG
Duke • Fr • 6'1" / 185 lbs
Utah needs a backup point guard, and Jones is as low risk as they come. He knows how to run an offense and will give maximum effort on the defensive end. There are questions about his shooting from NBA distance, but he'll certainly make winning plays for you.
From Indiana Pacers
Round 1 - Pick 24
Pokusevski is a lottery talent, but likely won't be ready to play this season given his slight frame and lower-level previous competition. As a title contender, Milwaukee will look for veteran help through trade and free agency, so this would be a great opportunity to brighten its future with a prospect who needs some seasoning.
From Denver Nuggets
Round 1 - Pick 25
Maryland • Fr • 6'10" / 215 lbs
OKC is in the talent acquisition business, and Smith is one of the more talented big men at this stage of the draft. His offensive potential is intriguing given his 3-point shooting ability, to go along with his rim protection on the other end.
Round 1 - Pick 26
Mississippi State • Fr • 6'6" / 235 lbs
The Celtics need wing depth, and Woodard will be able to defend immediately. If he proves he can make his 3s the way he did his last season in college, he should earn minutes quickly.
From Los Angeles Clippers
Round 1 - Pick 27
Round 1 - Pick 28
San Diego State • Fr • 6'1" / 185 lbs
Flynn could step in and earn minutes for the champions right away given his ability to shoot, distribute and defend, especially if Rajon Rondo ends up elsewhere in free agency.
Round 1 - Pick 29
Washington • Fr • 6'9" / 192 lbs
McDaniels passes the eye test as a potentially elite wing scorer, but he'll need the Raptors development team to work its magic for it all to come together.
From Milwaukee Bucks
Round 1 - Pick 30
Maledon is an intriguing 19-year-old French prospect whose shooting has improved nearly every season. His potential as a playmaker is obvious, but the Celtics may want to stash him overseas to get him more experience.
Round 2 - Pick 1 (31st overall)
NBA Draft • Fr • 6'8" / 245 lbs
With Dwight Powell coming off of an Achilles injury, the Mavericks would do well to pick Tillman, an excellent finisher who can also make plays for others in the short roll. What he'll bring most, however, is defensive intensity in the middle.
From Cleveland Cavaliers
Round 2 - Pick 2 (32nd overall)
Jay Scrubb SF
NBA Draft • Fr • 6'5" / 220 lbs
Scrubb is somewhat off the radar because he's coming from junior college, but his film is impressive as both a scorer and pick-and-roll distributor. He's worth a shot for Charlotte in the second round.
Round 2 - Pick 3 (33rd overall)
From Atlanta Hawks
Round 2 - Pick 4 (34th overall)
From Detroit Pistons
Round 2 - Pick 5 (35th overall)
Minnesota • Fr • 6'8" / 240 lbs
Oturu's profile as a 3-point shooting, shot-blocking big would make him a first-round talent, were it not for the league's de-emphasis on centers. He'll need to improve his lateral quickness to not get killed in pick-and-roll, but it's worth a second-round pick for the Kings.
From New York Knicks
Round 2 - Pick 6 (36th overall)
NBA Draft • Fr • 6'3" / 195 lbs
If you're sensing a trend with these Sixers picks, you're not crazy. They need all the shooting and playmaking they can get, and Ramsey is an intriguing prospect in that regard.
From Chicago Bulls
Round 2 - Pick 7 (37th overall)
NBA Draft • Fr • 6'7" / 216 lbs
Bey could be a steal for the Wizards in the second round as a 3-and-D wing (emphasis on the D) who averaged over a steal and a block per game last season at Colorado.
From Charlotte Hornets
Round 2 - Pick 8 (38th overall)
NBA Draft • Fr • 6'2" / 188 lbs
Mannion's talent jumps off the screen, but he was inefficient in his only college season. The Knicks should take a chance on developing him as a playmaking point guard.
From Washington Wizards
Round 2 - Pick 9 (39th overall)
Arkansas • Fr • 6'4" / 167 lbs
A scorer and 3-point shooter with defensive potential, Joe would fit in nicely in New Orleans on the wing, and could eventually carry some of the scoring load when Brandon Ingram is on the bench.
From Phoenix Suns
Round 2 - Pick 10 (40th overall)
Round 2 - Pick 12 (42nd overall)
Round 2 - Pick 13 (43rd overall)
Michigan State • Fr • 6'1" / 185 lbs
What Winston lacks in size and athleticism, he makes up for in basketball IQ and effort. The Kings could use a backup playmaker and shooter as they look to make a playoff push.
From Memphis Grizzlies
Round 2 - Pick 14 (44th overall)
Arizona • Fr • 6'9" / 240 lbs
Nnaji is an intriguing offensive prospect who will need work on the defensive end. The Bulls might be willing to take that chance given Nnaji's ability to pick-and-pop as well as rim-run.
Round 2 - Pick 15 (45th overall)
NBA Draft • Fr • 6'9" / 220 lbs
Tillie has a defined role as a stretch-five, and would be a nice foil to Mo Bamba in situations where the Magic would like a little more offense from their backup center.
Round 2 - Pick 16 (46th overall)
Mason Jones SG
NBA Draft • 6'4" / 200 lbs
The Blazers continue their hunt for wings, and Jones proved to be a capable scorer and playmaker in college. He also showed a strong ability to get to the free throw line.
From Brooklyn Nets
Round 2 - Pick 17 (47th overall)
NBA Draft • Fr • 6'9" / 218 lbs
Reed is intriguing as a four or small-ball five with his shot blocking and defensive versatility. The offense is going to take a while, but he's athletic enough to contribute on that end from day one.
From Dallas Mavericks
Round 2 - Pick 18 (48th overall)
Myles Powell PG
NBA Draft • 6'2" / 195 lbs
A 23-year-old who should be able to contribute right away, Powell could fill a hole as a bucket-getter and ball-handler off the Warriors bench. His 6-7 wingspan should make him a capable defender as well.
Round 2 - Pick 19 (49th overall)
NBA Draft • Fr • 6'1" / 206 lbs
Pritchard brings both ball-handling and shooting along with a strong competitive motor. As a four-year player, he should be ready to contribute in Philly right away.
From Miami Heat
Round 2 - Pick 20 (50th overall)
Devon Dotson PG
NBA Draft • Fr • 6'2" / 185 lbs
A blur in transition, Dotson would fit in with an Atlanta team that was among the league leaders in pace last season. He'll also help on the defensive end, where the Hawks have been lacking for years.
From Utah Jazz
Round 2 - Pick 21 (51st overall)
From Houston Rockets
Round 2 - Pick 22 (52nd overall)
Round 2 - Pick 23 (53rd overall)
NBA Draft • Fr • 5'10" / 180 lbs
One of the best scorers and 3-point shooters in college basketball history, Howard is well worth taking a chance on in the second round despite his defensive liabilities due to his size.
Round 2 - Pick 24 (54th overall)
Sam Merrill SG
NBA Draft • Fr • 6'4" / 197 lbs
The Pacers were dead last in 3-point attempts per game last season, and that's presumably going to change under new coach Nate Bjorkgren. Merrill is one of the best 3-point shooters in the draft, and comes with the added bonus of some playmaking ability.
From Denver Nuggets
Round 2 - Pick 25 (55th overall)
Xavier • Fr • 6'7" / 220 lbs
Marshall needs to work on his 3-point shot if he's going to get regular playing time, but he'd still be valuable to the Nets as a wing defender and slasher with good playmaking ability, even if the shot never comes along.
From Boston Celtics
Round 2 - Pick 26 (56th overall)
Round 2 - Pick 27 (57th overall)
NBA Draft • Fr • 6'6" / 225 lbs
The Clippers can always use another long, strong wing defender, and Stevens will provide that. The offense will need work, but you can't get everything from a second-round pick.
From Los Angeles Lakers
Round 2 - Pick 28 (58th overall)
NBA Draft • Fr • 6'10" / 270 lbs
The Sixers need insurance for a potential Joel Embiid injury, and Azubuike fits the bill as a no-nonsense, old fashioned big, strong center who will be physical, rebound and block shots for them.
Round 2 - Pick 29 (59th overall)
Duke • Fr • 6'9" / 255 lbs
Carey is a physical post-up scorer and rebounder who shows potential to stretch to the NBA 3-point line. He has a lot of tools for the Raptors development staff to work with.
From Milwaukee Bucks
Round 2 - Pick 30 (60th overall)
Malik Fitts SF
NBA Draft • 6'8" / 230 lbs
Fitts would help space the floor for the Pelicans as a pick-and-pop threat and may also be able to spend some time on the wing as his defense improves under New Orleans' development staff.