NBA Mock Draft 6.0: Fallout after Lakers' trade for Anthony Davis
BOSTON -- The good folks in Los Angeles are used to shockwaves and tremors, but it has been a while since this town has been rocked by the basketball equivalent we all experienced on Saturday.
That’s the fallout after the Los Angeles Lakers pulled off one of the biggest blockbuster deals in some time, acquiring Anthony Davis from New Orleans in a trade that includes a trio of first-round picks being shipped out to the Pelicans, along with Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram and Josh Hart. Its impact will be felt immediately with the Lakers sending the Pelicans the No. 4 pick in this week’s draft, giving New Orleans two of the top four picks (they won the Zion Williamson sweepstakes by landing the top overall pick).
So as you can imagine, that No. 4 pick belonging to the Pelicans may very well change who is selected at No. 4 due to the Pelicans and their needs at this point, being different than those of the Lakers.
Here’s the latest installment of NBC Sports Boston’s Mock Draft 6.0.
1. New Orleans Pelicans
Zion Williamson, F, Duke
With Anthony Davis on the move, Zion Williamson will be the face of the franchise (sorry Jrue Holiday).
3. New York Knicks
R.J. Barrett, G/F, Duke
He’s the best player in this draft not named Zion or Ja.
4. New Orleans Pelicans (from Los Angeles Lakers)
Jarrett Culver, G, Texas Tech
The Pelicans need shooters in the worst way, with Culver ranking among the best in this year’s draft.
5. Cleveland Cavaliers
De’Andre Hunter, F, Virginia
Any team that drafts Hunter is sending a message that they’re willing to draft substance over sizzle. There’s little wow-factor in his game other than he makes winning plays at both ends of the floor, consistently.
6. Phoenix Suns
Darius Garland, G, Vanderbilt
Outside of the top-3 picks, the next closest thing to a draft day lock, is Garland being scooped up by the Suns right here.
7. Chicago Bulls
Coby White, G, UNC
The end-to-end speed that White brings to the game gives the Bulls a good shot of getting some easy points, which is among the many areas in need of improvement for this Chicago team.
8. Atlanta Hawks
Jaxson Hayes, PF/C, Texas
With a boatload of first-round picks, the Hawks kick things off right by taking arguably the best center in this draft who can defend at an elite level and runs the floor well enough to get easy baskets and help Trae Young pad his assists total.
9. Washington Wizards
Sekou Doumbouya, SF/PF, International
The Wizards can play it safe and go with Cam Reddish of Duke or Nassir Little of UNC. But they need a potential game-changer and Doumbouya, while extremely young, has the kind of upside few players in this draft possess.
10. Atlanta Hawks
Cam Reddish, G/F, Duke
He didn’t live up to the lofty expectations at Duke, but his talent, athleticism and big-time scoring potential make him a solid pick-up at this point in the draft.
11. Minnesota Timberwolves
Nassir Little, G/F, UNC
As disappointing as he was during his lone season at UNC, there’s still a tremendous amount of upside to Little’s game which is why he will be a lottery pick.
12. Charlotte Hornets
Romeo Langford, G, Indiana
The ability to play all three perimeter positions not to mention being a good finisher at the rim, gives Charlotte a jack-of-all-trades kind of player who can help the team playing with Kemba Walker, or embrace a bigger role if Walker signs elsewhere.
13. Miami Heat
Rui Hachimura, F, Gonzaga
He is a tough, gritty player who shot better than 40 percent from 3-point range last season, with a 7-foot-2 wingspan that helps him both as a defender and rebounder even if he’s battling bigger players.
Tyler Herro: One to Watch
15. Detroit Pistons
Nickeil Alexander-Walker, G, Virginia Tech
Too many of Detroit’s guards are either point guards or shooting guards only. Alexander-Walker provides a solid combo guard with a high basketball I.Q. and ceiling for growth.
16. Orlando Magic
Bol Bol, F/C, Oregon
There will surely be teams scared off by his foot injury and lithe frame, but remember this: Magic GM John Hammond loves to draft long, versatile big men which during his time in Milwaukee, included the selection of Giannis Antetokounmpo.
17. Atlanta Hawks (via Brooklyn Nets)
Brandon Clarke, F, Gonzaga
The bonus pick from the trade with Brooklyn provides the Hawks with one of the more efficient players in all of college basketball last season who has above-average versatility that allows him to be a factor as a small-ball “big” in today’s game.
18. Indiana Pacers
PJ Washington, F, Kentucky
The Pacers could use a player like Washington who is part banger — he led the Wildcats in rebounding last season — and part long-range bomber (shot better than 42 percent on 3’s last season).
19. San Antonio Spurs
Mfiondu Kabengele, C, Florida State
Can stretch the floor, good rebounder and excellent shot-blocker; few players have seen their stock rise since the end of the college basketball season like Kabengele.
20. Boston Celtics (via Los Angeles Clippers)
Keldon Johnson, G/F, Kentucky
He has a quick first-step, consistent motor and knows how to use his size effectively either bullying smaller players or using his speed and athleticism when matched up with a bigger foe.
Keldon Johnson: One to Watch
21. Oklahoma City Thunder
Cameron Johnson, F, UNC
Fifth-year senior was one of the nation’s best at making contested shots, finished the year shooting better than 45 percent on 3’s.
22. Boston Celtics
Goga Bitadze, C, International
The final player left in the Green Room goes to Boston which adds a 6-foot-11 center who rebounds well and is a good finisher at the rim.
23. Utah Jazz
Carsen Edwards, PG, Purdue
Teams aren’t crazy about his size, but his toughness, shot-making and leadership make him a player who would fit in well with what head coach Quin Snyder is looking for at this position.
24. Philadelphia 76ers
Ty Jerome, G, Virginia
With T.J. McConnell likely on the move, adding Jerome as a backup third point guard makes a lot of sense this late in the first round.
25. Portland Trail Blazers
Kevin Porter Jr., SG, USC
An ideal landing spot for Porter Jr., a top-10 talent who can learn from a couple of pro’s pros in Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum, and not have the pressure to perform at a high level on his shoulders from Day One.
26. Cleveland Cavaliers (via Houston Rockets)
Matisse Thybulle, G/F, Washington
The Cavs have many needs; an elite perimeter defender being one of them. While the build is different, his brand of basketball reminds many of Celtics guard Marcus Smart.
27. Brooklyn Nets (via Denver Nuggets)
Admiral Schofield, F, Tennessee
He’s a tough, rugged 3-and-D type guy who played all five positions at Tennessee and shot better than 40 percent in the last three seasons for the Volunteers.
28. Golden State Warriors
Nicolas Claxton, F/C, Georgia
Despite his slim frame (7-foot, 217 pounds), his length and ability to block/alter shots and switch out defensively on perimeter players in pick-and-roll sets, makes him a solid addition at this point in the draft with decent amount of upside.
29. San Antonio Spurs (via Toronto Raptors)
KZ Okpala, SG/SF, Stanford
Explosive athlete getting to the rim, KZ Okpala has tremendous upside as a scorer in this league due to his versatility, ball-handling and shoot-first mindset.
30. Milwaukee Bucks
Bruno Fernando, F/C, Maryland
Adding an enforcer-type like Bruno Fernando gives the Bucks a different, more physical dimension in the frontcourt. That can only help going forward on those nights when the Bucks face some of the more physical big men in the league like Philly’s Joel Embiid.