The NBA is as uncertain a place as any right now. The league has not played a game in almost two months, and at this point in the spring, the playoffs would be well underway. Nevertheless, league owners are determined to crown a champion.
While Adam Silver considers every possible scenario, practice facilities have been allowed to open up in certain states. If the season is to continue, all off-season activities will likely be shifted until at least early August. This puts the timing of the NBA Draft in limbo.
With prospects coming off shortened seasons due to Covid-19, they will likely have a long wait to hear their name called by the commissioner on draft day. But that leaves plenty of time for speculation. So without further adieu, here is take one of the Oliver Glass 2020 TWSN NBA Mock Draft.
- Golden State Warriors: James Wiseman- Center, Memphis
Many consider Anthony Edwards to be the consensus number one pick in this draft regardless of who the team picking is. But if the Warriors are that team, Edwards does not fit their plan for the near future. Golden State does hold the worst record in the league this year, but with the return of Klay Thompson along with a full season of Steph Curry, they will most likely be in “win now” mode next season.
If this is indeed the state of the Warriors, Anthony Edwards is not their guy. With Curry, Thompson, and Andrew Wiggins in the back-court, there is not much room for him to play real minutes any time soon. The center position is a whole different story though.
Kevon Looney and Marquise Chriss have filled most of the minutes at the five for Golden State. James Wiseman could fill a huge need for the Warriors. Although they would be drafting for need, Wiseman is anything but a reach at number one. He only played three games at Memphis, but his tremendous upside is abundantly clear when you see him play.
He is a pure athlete at 7-foot-1 with the ablility to run and jump with guys much smaller than him. He has shown flashes of dominance on both sides of the ball not seen since Joel Embiid back in 2014. The small sample size is a question, but he could be the piece to push the Warriors back to the top of the league.
2. Cleveland Cavaliers: Anthony Edwards- Shooting Guard, Georgia
The Cavaliers have taken a guard in the lottery in each of the last two years. But, this is a case where taking the best player available is the clear option. Anthony Edwards had an up-and-down freshman season at Georgia, but he showed that his game is perfectly designed to translate to the next level.
He is 6-foot-5, but strong enough to play both the two and the three. He can score from anywhere on the floor by using his 225 pound frame and elite explosiveness to get a shot at the rim or step back and hit a contested three.
Edwards was inconsistent on the defensive end last year, but his 6-foot-9 wingspan paired with his athleticism gives him the potential to be elite on that end of the floor as well. The Cavaliers might not be a great team next year, but this kid could make them very fun to watch.
3. Minnesota Timberwolves: Obi Toppin- Power Forward, Dayton
The T-Wolves have an opportunity to create a dynamic big three on the offensive end with this pick by pairing D’angelo Russell and Karl Anthony-Towns with Obi Toppin, the NCAA Player of the Year. In his sophomore season at Dayton, he averaged 20 points and 7.5 rebounds on 63% shooting vaulting his stock from late first round pick to top five prospect.
Toppin can score from anywhere on the floor with a combination of size, athleticism, and guard skills. He is a match-up nightmare who is able to overpower forwards in the post or blow by bigs. He also serves as a great floor spacer at the four shooting 39% from three last year.
His defense is definitely a question mark, and the Timberwolves did struggle there last year. However, with a 7-foot-2 wingspan and quick feet, he should develop into a serviceable defender at the next level.
4. Atlanta Hawks: Deni Avidja- Small Forward, Israel
The Hawks are loaded with talented young players at almost every position. Another lottery pick rookie may not be what they need. Look for them to trade down in this draft to acquire veteran role players. But if they do decide to stay at four, Deni Avidja is probably the best player available.
He is a tall point forward who can play on or off the ball with great playmaking instincts. Definitely a long term project, but with a very high upside that could be a great compliment to Trae Young.
5. Detroit Pistons: LaMelo Ball- Point Guard, USA (NBL)
One of the most polarizing prospects in the draft, LaMelo Ball is the definition of a boom-or-bust prospect. He has shown scouts the potential to be a game changing passer on the next level. Considering his 6-foot-8 frame, this has led to a lot of excitement around his game.
He still has a lot to prove though. In the 12 games he played in Australia’s NBL, he struggled to shoot the ball only hitting 25% of his threes. He also has not silenced the criticisms of his defense. But the Pistons have failed to draft any game changing players in recent history, so this might be the splash pick they want to make.
He should fit very well alongside Luke Kennard and Sekou Doumbouya to create a nice young core for Detroit.
6. New York Knicks: Cole Anthony- Point Guard, North Carolina
The Knicks are very likely to take their possible point guard of the future with this pick. It is clearly their biggest position of need, and there are at least three with top 10 talent. It is likely that either Cole Anthony or Lamelo Ball will fall to them. Both players that have been under the bright lights since their high school days are as ready as any prospect could be for the microscope of the New York media.
But also don’t be surprised if they go with Tyrese Haliburton, who is a lead guard out of Iowa State. The Knicks can be as hard to predict as anyone, but with Anthony, they get a dynamic scorer from the point guard spot who could develop into a star if he can improve his shot selection.
There are also questions about whether or not he is a winner based off of his lone season with North Carolina, but the team around him wasn’t exactly loaded with top level talent. To me, Anthony provides the floor general that the young Knicks need.
7. Chicago Bulls: Isaac Okoro- Small Forward, Auburn
To me there is no better fit in the top 10 of this draft than the Bulls and Isaac Okoro. Otto Porter, the current starter at small forward, has missed significant time over the past two seasons, and has not lived up to his `four-year, $104 million contract. Okoro has many similarities to Porter only with a much higher ceiling.
The 19-year-old wing can be the perfect compliment to Zach Lavine and Lauri Markannan, who are two players whose defensive production does not match their high level play on the offensive end. Okoro showed an ability to play defense rarely seen from prospects his age, and his elite athleticism could make him a real steal at seven.
8. Charlotte Hornets: Onyeka Okongwu- Center, USC
The emergence of Devonte Graham and Terry Rozier this season has given the Hornets a young intriguing back-court and has softened the blow from the loss of All-Star guard Kemba Walker. But the team has not had a true interior presence since the departure of Al Jefferson in 2015.
Onyeka Okongwu provides them with an athletic vertical spacer who can protect the rim and run the floor. His ability to be a lob threat should immediately help open things up for the Hornets young scorers, and his offensive game improved immensely in his freshman season. He is a little undersized at 6-foot-9, but his 7-foot-1 wingspan easily makes up for it.
9. Washington Wizards: Tyrese Haliburton- Point Guard, Iowa State
As hard as it may be for anyone to admit, we may never see the same John Wall on the court again. Coming off of multiple injuries including a ruptured achilles, he may not regain all of his trademark explosiveness. So it makes sense for the Wizards to draft a point guard in a draft with so many available.
Tyrese Haliburton should be able to take some of the playmaking burden off of Bradley Beal. He is a 6-foot-5 high IQ player with a great feel for distributing the basketball. His ability to create his own shot is still a work in progress, but early on he won’t be asked to score the ball too much.
10. Phoenix Suns: Killian Hayes- Point Guard, France
The Suns have held off on drafting a point guard in the lottery for quite a few years now, but I don’t see them doing that again. Ricky Rubio was a great addition to their team this year, but he doesn’t really fit their timeline.
Killian Hayes is another tall lead guard standing at 6-foot-5, and he can do a little bit of everything. He has become a three level scorer and has shown flashes of great playmaking ability. With Rubio as a mentor, he could blossom into the primary ball handler they need to bring out the best from Devin Booker and Deandre Ayton.
11. San Antonio Spurs: Jaden McDaniels- Small Forward, Washington
Without any glaring needs, the Spurs are in an opportunity to take the best player available at this point. Jaden McDaniels has the opportunity to be a game changing scorer at the NBA level. He has drawn comparisons to Brandon Ingram and Kevin Durant for his slender 6-foot-10 200 pound frame to go along with a smooth offensive game.
He is very raw though, and his production as a freshman at Washington was very inconsistent, so there is bust potential here.
12. Sacramento Kings: Saddiq Bey- Small Forward, Villanova
Bogdan Bogdonovic is set to be a free agent this off-season, and with the limited number of high level players hitting the open market this off-season, he may get quite the payday elsewhere. If this is in fact the case, the Kings will need help on the wing.
Saddiq Bey should fit in seamlessly to what Sacramento is trying to do. He can be an effective three and D player from day one, which will make things easier for leading scorers Buddy Hield and De’Aaron Fox on both sides of the floor.
13. New Orleans Pelicans: Devin Vassell- Shooting Guard, Florida State
The Pelicans acquired quite a few draft picks and young players from the Lakers as a consolation prize for giving away a top five player in the league. As a result, they are loaded with young talent, and may look to trade this pick. But if they don’t, their priority should be getting as many shooters around young phenom Zion Williamson as possible.
Devin Vassell can surely help with that. In his sophomore season, he shot 49% from the field and 41.5% from three. He can knock down the long ball, but can also burn closeouts with a nice off the dribble mid-range game. A low risk pick that can help New Orleans right away
14. Portland Trail Blazers: Nico Mannion- Point Guard, Arizona
The Blazers would ideally like to take a small forward at this spot, which is clearly their biggest position of need. In this situation though, all of the top tier wings are off the board leaving Portland to take the best player available at 14. But, to get Nico Mannion at this point in the draft is nothing for Blazers fans to hang their heads about.
He is a dynamic guard who is equally adept at scoring and playmaking with a silky smooth stroke. He could be fantastic leading the second unit and can learn a lot under Damian Lillard.
15. Orlando Magic: Tyrese Maxey- Shooting Guard, Kentucky
This would be a fantastic draft day scenario for the Magic, who haven’t drafted a guard this high since Victor Oladipo. Tyrese Maxey is a guy that has the potential to be a fantastic three level scorer and a more than serviceable defender.
Not to mention, he has the potential to play both guard spots. He definitely needs to put some work in on his shooting form, which has a lower release point than desired, but if he gets that together, Maxey could be quite the steal.
16. Minnesota Timberwolves (via Nets): Josh Green- Shooting Guard, Arizona
With the Timberwolves taking Obi Toppin at three in this mock, it makes sense for them to get some back-court help with their second pick in the first round. They did take Jarrett Culver in the lottery last year, but Josh Green gives them a different dimension at the two guard.
He is an athletic scorer who has made great strides to improve his shot by hitting 36% of his threes last year. He is still learning how to play the game, and it may take him some time to adjust to the NBA level, but he has a very high ceiling.
17. Boston Celtics (via Grizzlies): Theo Maledon- Point Guard, France
The Celtics have three picks in the first round, and will most likely be active in the trade market leading up to the draft, but if they stay put, Theo Maledon can definitely fill a need. With the Celtics way over the cap heading into the offseason, and Brad Wannamaker set to be a free agent, they will likely need a backup point guard.
He provides a good change of pace to Kemba Walker standing at 6-foot-5 with long arms. He is only 18, but is also one of the more experienced players in the draft. He has played for ASVEL Basket in France for the last two years against some of the top professional talent in the world. He is as ready as any rookie could be to contribute to a contending team.
18. Dallas Mavericks: Precious Achiuwa- Power Forward, Memphis
This draft may not have the typical sure-fire superstars at the top that you see most years, but it may be one of the deepest in a while. Precious Achiuwa is probably a lottery pick most years. He is an athletic power forward that can put the ball on the deck, stretch the defense out the three point line, and guard three through five on the defensive end.
He has a chance to be one of the most versatile power forwards in the league, and a great addition to a young and talented Mavs squad.
19. Milwaukee Bucks (via Pacers): Patrick Williams- Small Forward, Florida State
Milwaukee isn’t looking for a star with this pick. They are looking for a guy who can contribute right away and do one or two things very well. Patrick Williams fits this mold perfectly. In his lone season at Florida State, he showed, in limited minutes, that he was one of the best defenders in college basketball.
With elite athleticism, great hands, and a 6’11 wingspan, he can be a terror for any perimeter player. Pair that with his 39% three point shooting from last year, and you have a guy that can fit in perfectly as a role player for the Bucks, who are an elite defensive team that loves to shoot the long ball.
20. Brooklyn Nets (via Sixers): R.J. Hampton- Shooting Guard, USA (NBL)
At this point in the draft, the Nets are not looking for a player to come in and contribute big minutes right away. So, although they are set at guard, R.J. Hampton is clearly the best player available. He is a 6-foot-5 combo guard with pure scoring talent. His athleticism allows him to get his shot off whenever he wants to. His defense certainly needs some work, but the potential is definitely there.
21. Denver Nuggets (via Rockets): Zeke Nnaji- Center, Arizona
With Paul Millsap and Mason Plumlee both set to become free agents, the Nuggets are going to need some help in the front-court. Zeke Nnaji could serve as a great backup to Nikola Jokic. Nnaji is an athletic big who brings tremendous energy on both sides of the floor. He can excel right away with his ability to be a vertical spacer and his switchability on the defensive end of the floor.
22. Philadelphia 76ers (via Thunder): Tre Jones- Point Guard, Duke
The Sixers could definitely use another point guard on the roster, and Tre Jones might be the perfect fit. There will be a lot of guards taken before Jones, but he might be more NBA ready than all of them. Due to his relatively low ceiling, he most likely won’t even sniff the lottery, but he has skills that can transfer to the league from the get go.
He is 6-foot-5 with great length and probably the best defender in college basketball last year. He knows how to run an offense, and has done so for teams with multiple NBA prospects. He has a great feel for the game and isn’t mistake prone. He is the perfect pick for a team in win now mode.
23. Miami Heat: Aaron Nesmith- Small Forward, Vanderbilt
If he falls to this point in the draft, the Heat would love to scoop up Aaron Nesmith this late in the first round regardless of position of need. At the very least, he is a floor spacer at the next level. He shot a ridiculous 52% from three on four makes a game last year.
He also has some defensive upside with a 6’10 wingspan and good instincts. He may be another player that drops in the draft due to his low ceiling mostly because of his lack of athleticism, but he is another guy that is quite NBA ready for a late first round pick
24. Utah Jazz: Jordan Nwora- Power Forward, Louisville
The trend of the slightly older and more NBA ready players coming off the board late in the first continues. Jordan Nwora became a polished and versatile scorer in his junior year at Louisville, as he is able to play the three or the four.
His ability to hit shots off the catch or off the dribble should translate well at the next level. He did disappear offensively in some big games last year, but defenses can’t key in on him nearly as much on the next level. The Jazz don’t get a lot of scoring from their front-court, so Nwora may find some playing time in his rookie season if drafted here.
25. Oklahoma City Thunder: Jalen Smith- Center, Maryland
Although he would have likely been a first round pick in last year’s draft, Jalen Smith decided to stay for his sophomore season at Maryland, and that experience served him well. His draft stock may not be any higher, but he certainly refined his game since then.
He has expanded his range on his shot out to the three point line, which should compliment his athleticism and face up offensive game nicely. He still has to get a lot stronger, but he could really play well alongside OKC’s talented guards especially in the pick and roll
26. Boston Celtics: Isaiah Stewart- Center, Washington
If the Celtics stay put with these three picks, it is almost guaranteed they will take a center with one of them. If Enes Kanter opts out of his $4 million option, Isaiah Stewart would be a good pick to fill that hole. He is very active on the offensive glass, and can be a dominant inside presence with his combination of strength and touch.
Without any star players at center, the Celtics like to play the position by committee, so this would be another solid body inside for Boston.
27. New York Knicks (via Clippers): Udoka Azubuike- Center, Kansas
In terms of late first round steals, Udoka Azubuike has all the trademark characteristics of one. In college, he was a dominant force on both sides of the floor. A great rim protector, rebounder, and vertical spacer, Azubuike’s stock is not any higher than this mostly because of his age and staying all four years of college.
He was a Consensus Second Team All-American and probably the most valuable player on the top college team in the nation. He presents great value for the Knicks at 27.
28. Toronto Raptors: Cassius Winston- Point Guard, Michigan State
With Fred Van Vleet moving to starting two guard this year, the Raptors don’t have a primary ball handler in the second unit. Cassius Winston is a guy who could step in and provide that immediately.
Another player whose main weakness is his low ceiling, he is a capable scorer and player at the NBA level already. Like Azubuike, he played four years in college and was an All-American. The perfect guy for a team trying to get back to the NBA Finals.
29. Los Angeles Lakers: Kira Lewis- Point Guard, Alabama
With Rajon Rondo and Quinn Cook being the only real ball handlers on the team besides Lebron, the Lakers may go point guard with this pick. In fact, the play style of Kira Lewis has many similarities to that of a young Rajon Rondo.
He is a quick guard with great playmaking ability and a knack for creative shotmaking around the rim, who struggles with his outside shot. His game could really benefit from being on a team with so many proven veterans in the locker room.
30. Boston Celtics (via Bucks): Robert Woodard- Small Forward, Mississippi State
It may feel a little redundant for the Celtics to take a wing in the first round, but at this point in the draft, the best player available is probably the best way to go. Robert Woodard has turned himself into a good three point shooter and a reliable overall scorer. If drafted to Boston, he will probably spend a considerable amount of time in the G-League.
31. Dallas Mavericks (via Cavaliers): Vernon Carey Jr.- Center, Duke
32. Charlotte Hornets (via Warriors): Immanuel Quickley- Shooting Guard, Kentucky
33. Minnesota Timerwolves: Jahmius Ramsey- Point Guard, Texas Tech
34. Philadelphia 76ers (via Hawks): Aleksej Pokusevski- Power Forward, Serbia
35. Sacramento Kings (via Pistons): Devon Dotson- Point Guard, Kansas
36. Philadelphia 76ers (via Knicks): Cassius Stanley- Shooting Guard, Duke
37. Washington Wizards (via Bulls): Daniel Oturu- Center, Minnesota
38. New York Knicks (via Hornets): Paul Reed- Power Forward, Depaul
39. New Orleans Pelicans (via Wizards): Tyrell Terry- Point Guard, Stanford
40. Memphis Grizzlies (via Suns): Elijah Hughes- Shooting Guard, Syracuse
41. San Antonio Spurs: Ashton Hagans- Point Guard, Kentucky
42. Sacramento Kings: Leandro Balmaro- Shooting Guard, Argentina
43. New Orleans Pelicans: Reggie Perry- Center, Mississippi State
44. Portland Trail Blazers: Chris Smith- Small Forward UCLA
45. Orlando Magic: Payton Pritchard- Point Guard, Oregon
46. Boston Celtics (via Nets): Jared Butler- Point Guard, Butler
47. Chicago Bulls (via Grizzlies): Steven Enoch- Center, Louisville
48. Indiana Pacers: Tyler Bey- Power Forward, Colorado
49. Philadelphia 76ers: Austin Wiley- Center, Auburn
50. Oklahoma City Thunder: Isaiah Joe- Shooting Guard, Arkansas
51. Golden State Warriors (via Mavericks): Malachi Flynn- Point Guard, San Diego St.
52. Golden State Warriors (via Jazz): Lamar Stevens- Small Forward, Penn State
53. Atlanta Hawks (via Rockets): Xavier Tillman- Center, Michigan State
54. Sacramento Kings (via Heat): Rayshaun Hammonds- Forward, Georgia
55. Los Angeles Clippers: Markus Howard- Point Guard, Marquette
56. Charlotte Hornets (via Celtics): Cory Kispert- Small Forward, Gonzaga
57. Brooklyn Nets (via Nuggets): Jay Scrubb- Shooting Guard, JUCO
58. Toronto Raptors: Mamadi Diakite- Center, Virginia
59. Philadelphia 76ers (via Lakers): Aaron Henry- Shooting Guard, Michigan State
60. New Orleans Pelicans (via Bucks): Kaleb Wesson- Center, Ohio State