2020 NBA Mock Draft 3.0: No clear-cut choice at No. 1
With about six weeks of NBA games left to play, there’s a heightened level of uncertainty as to who will be the No. 1 overall pick.
There is no Zion Williamson in this year’s draft; that is, a player who would be the top pick regardless of who is on the clock.
This is a draft where the top picks are going to address specific team needs as opposed to most drafts where the value of the early selections is how they enhance a team's overall talent.
And just like there’s no clear-cut No. 1 pick, there’s going to be quite a bit of jockeying among NBA teams as far as who will have the best shot at landing one of the top picks.
That said, here’s the current draft order based on records and the player those respective teams are likely to select.
1. Golden State Warriors
Anthony Edwards, 6-5, Wing, Georgia
Comes into the league with an NBA-ready frame that will allow him to finish at the rim through contact. And with elite scorers around him like Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson, Edwards will be a more efficient shooter, which would address one of the biggest concerns with his game.
2. Atlanta Hawks
James Wiseman, 7-1, Center, Memphis
After adding Clint Capela before the trade deadline, selecting a rim-protecting big through the draft provides some much-needed frontcourt depth to a team that’s well stocked at the wing and guard positions.
3. New York Knicks
LaMelo Ball, 6-7, Wing, International
The Knicks would love to trade this pick and add an established playmaker. But in a draft that will be defined by upside, Ball is a gamble worth taking at this point.
4. Cleveland Cavaliers
Deni Avdija, 6-8, Wing, International
Comparisons will be made between him and Dallas’ Luka Doncic because of their size, age and international roots. Avdija isn’t on the same level as Doncic, but still brings a diverse set of skills as a scorer, rebounder and playmaker to the game that should aid his transition from international play to the NBA.
5. Minnesota Timberwolves
Obi Toppin, 6-9, Forward, Dayton
One of the nation’s most efficient scorers, Toppin has to show that he’s more than just a human highlight waiting to happen — especially when it comes to defense, which thus far is an area he has to improve upon at the next level.
6. Detroit Pistons
Cole Anthony, 6-3, Guard, North Carolina
This might be a bit high for Anthony considering the type of season he's having at North Carolina. But his ability to score, finish at the rim and lead a team through tough times — which he had to do at UNC as a freshman — make him a good fit for where the Pistons are in their growth.
7. Chicago Bulls
Onyeka Okongwu, 6-9, Forward/Center, USC
The addition of Okongwu provides the Bulls with a young big in the mold of Tristan Thompson, but with more offensive upside.
8. Charlotte Hornets
Isaac Okoro, 6-6, Wing, Auburn
In this era of small ball for all, Okoro’s versatility becomes a major draw for teams. And considering the holes that the Hornets have to fill on the wing and in the frontcourt, Okoro has the potential to step in as a contributor on Day One.
9. Washington Wizards
Tyrese Haliburton, 6-5, Wing, Iowa State
The Wizards have to address their backcourt in this draft, regardless of John Wall’s health status. In Haliburton, Washington has a versatile playmaker/scorer/rebounder whose strengths should complement All-Star Bradley Beal.
10. Phoenix Suns
Killian Hayes, 6-5, Wing, International
He has added a nice step-back 3-point shot to his game, which thus far is built heavily on his end-to-end speed and ability to finish at the rim. An improved perimeter game is why Hayes is looking more like a lottery (top-14) lock at this point in the draft process.
11. San Antonio Spurs
R.J. Hampton, 6-5, Wing, International
Has great change-of-direction speed with the ability to get where he wants to in a hurry, is a tough cover guarding one-on-one. Has a nice mid-range game akin to current Spurs guard DeMar DeRozan.
12. Sacramento Kings
Tyrese Maxey, 6-4, Wing, Kentucky
While he doesn’t have ideal size for a wing scorer, Maxey will get a pass because of his talent as well as the impressive track record of John Calipari-coached shooting guards who have come out of Kentucky lately.
13. New Orleans Pelicans
Devin Vassell, 6-7, Wing, Florida State
Vassell’s already-strong defensive game combined with an improved 3-point shot is why he’s making his way up the draft board to where he’s unlikely to get past the teens.
14. Portland Trail Blazers
Jaden McDaniels, 6-10, Wing, Washington
The production hasn’t been great, but there are aspects of his game, combined with his basketball instincts, that will make it extremely difficult for teams picking in the middle of the first round to take a pass on him.
15. Orlando Magic
Nico Mannion, 6-3, Guard, Arizona
One of the better playmakers in this draft, there’s a decent chance for him to see immediate playing time with Orlando, whose backcourt is in a state of flux.
16. Minnesota Timberwolves (via Brooklyn)
Precious Achiuwa, 6-9, Forward/Center, Memphis
While limited in terms of scoring, his strength, defensive acumen and a 7-2 wingspan allow him to play much bigger than his actual height suggests, which fits in well with the kind of players NBA teams are looking to add to their rosters.
17. Boston Celtics (via Memphis)
Aaron Nesmith, 6-6, Wing, Vanderbilt
If not for a foot injury, Nesmith would be a Top 10 pick. He moves really well without the ball and has the potential to help keep the floor spaced because he’s a legit 3-point threat.
18. Milwaukee Bucks (via Indiana)
Theo Maledon, 6-5, Guard, International
A versatile guard, Theo Maledon is at his best in transition with an explosive first step off the dribble that meshes with a good touch around the basket when it comes to finishing off plays.
19. Dallas Mavericks
Saddiq Bey, 6-8, Wing, Villanova
NBA teams love his size (6-8, 220) at the next level, as well as his floor-spacing potential due to a nice shooting touch that extends beyond the 3-point line.
20. Brooklyn Nets (via Philadelphia)
Patrick Williams, 6-8, Forward, Florida State
His offensive game is trending in the right direction, but it is his defense that makes him an NBA first-rounder, showcasing the ability to be strong as an individual or help-side defender.
21. Utah Jazz
Amar Sylla, 6-9, Forward, International
The rim-running potential of Amar Sylla provides another means of generating offense for a Utah Jazz team that has been among the league’s lower scoring teams for years. He’s very raw but worth the risk at this point in the first round.
22. Miami Heat
Paul Reed, 6-9, Forward, DePaul
Talented, versatile “big” wing player, his build, defensive acumen and likely draft position has some believing he will be the Pascal Siakam of this year’s draft.
23. Philadelphia 76ers (via Oklahoma City)
Jordan Nwora, 6-8, Wing, Louisville
The Sixers need shooting in the worst way. Adding one of the nation’s best at this point in the first round is a huge get for Philly.
24. Denver Nuggets (via Houston)
Isaiah Stewart, 6-9, Washington
With Paul Millsap hitting free agency this summer, Isaiah Stewart brings toughness and versatility to the table, along with room to grow offensively.
25. New York Knicks (via L.A. Clippers)
Aleksej Pokusevski, 7-0, Center, International
Good rim protector and rebounder, his ball-handling and 3-point shooting is what really what separates him from most of the top international prospects this season.
26. Oklahoma City Thunder (via Denver)
Tyler Bey, 6-7, Wing, Colorado
Has the strength and athleticism to play multiple wing positions and if needed, some small-ball center too. Will provide some much-needed depth for this on-the-rise Thunder squad.
27. Boston Celtics
Jalen Smith, 6-10, Forward/Center, Maryland
He has a versatile set of skills, a quick, second-bounce when it comes to offensive rebounding and an overall feel for the game that would fit in nicely with Brad Stevens’ system.
28. Toronto Raptors
Vernon Carey Jr., 6-10, Center, Duke
With Marc Gasol likely on his last leg in Toronto, the Raptors add one of the more physical, high impact big men who doesn’t have much range outside the paint, but nonetheless can be a factor defensively and on the glass.
29. Los Angeles Lakers
Daniel Oturu, 6-10, Forward/Center, Minnesota
His offensive game is very much a work in progress, but the improvements he has made defensively and as a rebounder should land him a spot in the first round, or at worst, one of the first picks in the second.
30. Boston Celtics (via Milwaukee)
Josh Green, 6-6, Wing, Arizona
A big-time athlete who loves to get out in transition, Green’s calling card in the NBA will be his defense, which makes him an ideal addition to the Celtics’ roster.