Blakely's 2016 NBA Mock Draft 7.0
Blakely's 2016 NBA Mock Draft 7.0
BOSTON – With the number one overall pick, the Philadelphia 76ers will dictate the direction of the June 23 NBA Draft.
But it sounds as though the Sixers may be looking to get a jump on things with the team reportedly discussing a trade with Atlanta that will send one-time All-Star Jeff Teague to Philly for a package that would include Nerlens Noel going to the Hawks.
Such a deal would be a win-win for both teams.
Philadelphia upgrades its point guard situation significantly while Atlanta adds a rim-protecting big man that could soften the blow of losing Al Horford if the free agent-to-be decides to sign elsewhere.
And as you will see with this latest Mock Draft, just the talk of such a deal speaks to some degree as to what the Sixers’ intensions might be with the No. 1 overall pick.
Here is the latest installment of CSNNE.com’s Mock Draft 7.0.
1. Philadelphia – Ben Simmons, F, LSU
The Sixers are making no secret about willing to deal either Jahlil Okafor or Nerlens Noel, and they want a starter (preferably at the point) in exchange. In doing so, they are creating a need for a player with Simmons’ size and versatility.
2. Los Angeles Lakers --Brandon Ingram, SF, Duke
Tremendous length, good shooter, a player who exceeded the hype he came to Duke with last year. He’s not coming into the NBA equivalent to Kevin Durant at the same stage of his pro career, but Ingram will have ample opportunities to make an immediate impact with the Lakers and carve out his own niche in the NBA.
3. BOSTON – Jaylen Brown, SG/SF, California
It’s not so much that teams are souring on Dragan Bender, as much as other prospects like Jaylen Brown are impressing teams through workouts. Bender could easily find himself back in the No. 3 spot once he arrives in Boston for a workout. But until then, you’ll see players like Brown continue to leap-frog past him.
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4. Phoenix – Marquese Chriss, F, Washington
One of the biggest movers up the draft board, Chriss has displayed the kind of all-around skillset that ranks among the best in this year’s draft. Only 18 years old, his lack of experience and knack for racking up fouls in a hurry are the two biggest concerns teams have with him leading up to the draft.
5. Minnesota – Buddy Hield, SG, Oklahoma
Long-range shooting is among the areas Minnesota has to address this offseason. Drafting the best shooter in the draft is a nice start to the Tom Thibodeau era.
6. New Orleans – Jamal Murray, G, Kentucky
Murray is more of a combo guard who can initiate the offense at times. But having a player who can facilitate a bit as well as shoot like Murray can, is too good a talent to pass on.
7. Denver – Dragan Bender, PF/C, International
This is the point in the draft where Kris Dunn would make sense if the Nuggets didn’t draft Emmanuel Mudiay last year. The Nuggets should feel good about selecting Bender at this point in the draft, a player that for months was expected to be a top-3 selection.
8. Sacramento – Kris Dunn, PG, Providence College
The Kings add arguably the most complete point guard in the draft whose on-the-ball defense can only help a Kings team that allowed an NBA-high 109.1 points per game last season.
9. Toronto – Skal Labissiere, PF/C Kentucky
Another player working his way up the draft board, Labissiere would fit in well in terms of Toronto’s needs in the frontcourt and do so without the pressure that often comes with being a lottery pick.
10. Milwaukee – Jakob Poeltl, C, Utah
The Bucks ranked among the bottom-10 last season in points allowed in the paint (44.0). Milwaukee has great length all over the floor, but lack the kind of interior muscle that Poeltl can provide.
11. Orlando -- Henry Ellison, PF/C, Marquette
The Magic are looking to add depth at just about every position. Ellison’s offensive game is well-rounded. But to get on the floor early for Frank Vogel, he’ll have to prove himself as a solid defender.
12. Utah – Deyonta Davis, PF/C, Michigan State
The Jazz add one of the more promising young big men in this draft. Davis is a shot-blocking, defensive-oriented big who can only strengthen an already strong interior defense.
13. Phoenix – Denzel Valentine, SF, Michigan State
Versatility is what Valentine brings to the floor all the time, which allows him to be a contributor even when he’s not at the top of his game.
14. Chicago -- Furkan Korkmaz, SG, International
Korkmaz can score in many ways, whether it’s off the dribble, on pull-up jumpers or in transition. Like most of the 18-year-olds in this draft, Korkmaz needs to add strength to not only become a better defender but also capable of absorbing the physical contact he’ll surely feel to a greater extent in the NBA.
15. Denver (from Houston) – Cheick Diallo, PF, Kansas
The Nuggets know all too well they need to improve defensively. Diallo gives them an athletic, defensive-minded big whose athleticism will allow him to play both power forward and in some small-ball lineups, center too.
16. Boston (from Dallas) – Timothe Luwawu, SG/SF, International
His defense, bolstered by a 6-11 wingspan gets a lot of attention. But it is the fact that he shot nearly 40 percent on 3s this past season that will have Luwawu coming in just outside of the lottery (top-14) after being nothing more than an afterthought a year ago this time.
Timothe Luwawu 2016 NBA Draft scouting report
17. Memphis – Wade Baldwin IV, G, Vanderbilt
With a 6-11 wingspan and a reliable jumper, Baldwin gives the Grizzlies a player with change-of-pace potential at both ends of the floor. Of course the amount of playing time he gets early on will depend heavily on what happens with free agent-to-be Mike Conley.
18. Detroit -- Domantas Sabonis, PF, Gonzaga
Sabonis comes into the league as a big who will rely heavily on his footwork at both ends of the floor, in order to be effective. With Andre Drummond playing above the rim, Sabonis could give them a nice lift off the bench.
19. Denver (from Portland) – Malachi Richardson SG, Syracuse
Richardson’s decision to not work out for teams shortly after the NBA combine in Chicago last month led to speculation that Richardson has a promise from a team picking among the top-20. If that’s the case, the Nuggets – owners of three, first-round picks – make a lot of sense.
20. Indiana – DeAndre Bembry, SF, St. Joseph’s
Because Bembry has the kind of skills that translate well to playing all three perimeter positions, the Pacers can go with a small-ball lineup that’s more skilled than what we saw this past season.
21. Atlanta –Tyler Ulis, PG, Kentucky
If the Hawks do in fact trade Jeff Teague, they’ll be in the market for another point guard. Ulis is the best still on the board at this point in the draft.
22. Charlotte -- Ante Zizic, C, International
Zizic is a physical banger with good size and strength to play center which can only benefit a Hornets team that ranked third in the NBA last season in fewest points allowed (40.0) in the paint.
23. Boston – Damian Jones, C, Vanderbilt
While most teams are looking to add a player that can contribute down the road at this point in the draft, Jones’ solidly-built 7-foot frame and penchant for blocking shots allows Boston to meet one of the many needs they hope to address through the draft.
24. Philadelphia (from Miami) -- Zhou Qi, C, International
The Sixers are loaded upfront so this is a definite stash-and-dash pick. Considering all the physical attributes (7-7 ¾ wing span, 9-4 ½ standing reach) that Zhou brings to the game, having him stay overseas for another year or two is a good investment.
25. Los Angeles Clippers – Taurean Prince, SF, Baylor
Wes Johnson declined to pick up his $1.2 million player option, so the Clippers have a void on the perimeter. Prince will not be a big-time scorer in the NBA, but he can knock down 3s and defend at a high level – two qualities that should serve him well under ex-Celtics coach Doc Rivers.
26. Philadelphia (from Oklahoma City) – Juan Hernangomez, F, International
Energy. Effort. Aggression. This is what you’re getting with Hernangomez, one of the more under-rated overseas prospects in this draft.
27. Toronto – Dejounte Murray, SG, Washington
The Raptors have a solid core of players in the fold, but could definitely use some added firepower off the bench. Murray played both guard positions at Washington, but he’s more suited to playing shooting guard.
28. Phoenix (from Cleveland) – Ben Bentil, PF, Providence College
The workout circuit continues to be good to Bentil who continues to make a strong case for being selected in the first round.
29. San Antonio – Brice Johnson, F, North Carolina
There are questions about how much of a ceiling exists with Johnson’s game at the next level. But he gives the aging Spurs a nice jolt off the bench due to him being an exceptional athlete with above-average leaping ability.
30. Golden State – Thon Maker, F, International
There are a handful of teams (Toronto, Denver, Phoenix) that will think long and hard about selecting the 7-1 forward. And while there are many questions about his readiness for the NBA, he’s worth the risk at the end of the first round.
THE NEXT FIVE
The Celtics have five, second-round picks. They are not expected to use all of them but just in case, here’s a look at the players Boston should target in the second round.
No. 31: Stephen Zimmerman, PF/C, UNLV
No. 35: Paul Zisper, SF, International
No. 45: Joel Bolomboy, PF, Weber State
No. 51: Pascal Siakam, F, New Mexico State
No. 58 Dorian Finney-Smith, SF, Florida