Four years ago, this is what the First Round of the 2014 NBA Draft should’ve looked like...
These are some pretty darn good top selections…
No. 1 Pick, Cavs: Joel Embiid
Original pick: Andrew Wiggins
Is the really debatable? The answer is... maybe. Embiid's career averages of 22.0 ppg and 9.9 rpg are both tops among the players from this draft class, but his health has been an issue. Embiid has played in just 94 games since being drafted. However, when healthy he is a once in a lifetime type talent.
No. 2 Pick, Bucks: Nikola Jokic
Original pick: Jabari Parker
The Nuggets robbed the NBA when they drafted Jokic 41st overall in the 2nd round. Jokic has quickly become one of the best big men in the league, and you will be hard-pressed to find a better passing center. A center that is a legit triple-double threat. Yes, please!
No. 3 Pick, 76ers: Andrew Wiggins
Original pick: Joel Embiid
Wiggins was originally the No.1 pick, but falls in the redraft. That's not to say he was a bad pick in the first place, it's just that this draft had some gems. Wiggins has been solid in his four seasons - 19.7 ppg, 4.1 rpg, and 2.1 apg. He may not be the superstar we envisioned, but he is still developing at just 23 years old.
Yep, this draft is pretty stacked…
No. 4 Pick, Magic: Clint Capela
Original pick: Aaron Gordon
Who saw this one coming? Originally picked at by Houston at No.25, Capela has become one of the best defensive big men in the NBA. If he is in the paint, players think twice before driving to the rim. He is also Harden's favorite connection on the alley-oop lob. For his career, Capela averages 10.6 ppg, 8.1 rpg, and 1.4 blkpg
No. 5 Pick, Jazz: Aaron Gordon
Original pick: Dante Exum
Gordon came into the league with a lot of raw talent, and over the years has really started to mold into a complete player. He reminds us a lot of a young Blake Griffin. This past season he averaged 17.6 ppg, 7.9 rpg, 2.3 apg, and shot 33.6% from deep - all career highs.
No. 6 Pick, Celtics: Gary Harris
Original pick: Marcus Smart
Smart is a solid player, and one of the best on the defensive side of the ball, but Harris is evolving into an elite scorer in this league. For that, he gets the jump to No.6. He averaged a career-best 17.5 ppg last season with the Nuggets.
Yep, this draft is pretty stacked (cont.)…
No. 7 Pick, Lakers: Zach LaVine
Original pick: Julius Randle
LaVine was quickly becoming one of more electric players in the league before he was sidelined with a knee injury. But when healhty, he can put on a show. He holds career averages of 14.0 ppg, 3.0 rpg, and 3.2 apg
No. 8 Pick, Kings: Dario Saric
Original pick: Nik Stauskas
Saric was drafted in 2014, but stayed overseas and didn't make his NBA debut until 2016 after he was traded to 76ers. In two seasons, Saric has been the perfect stretch four. He averaged 14.6 ppg while shooting nearly 40% from deep last season. There aren't many teams that wouldn't want him on their roster.
No. 9 Pick, Hornets: Jabari Parker
Original pick: Noah Vonleh
In a recurring theme from this draft class, Parker has been solid "when healthy." A torn ACL derailed his season in 2016-'17, and when he eventually came back in 2018 he just wasn't the same. Parker has averaged 15.4 ppg, 5.5 rpg, and 2.0 apg for his career, and can be a star if he returns to pre-injury form.
Just imagine if Nurkic would’ve gone to anywhere, but Denver…
In this redraft world, Jusuf Nurkic would be the No.10 overall pick instead of heading to Denver as the 16th pick. In this universe, the Nuggets would not have had to make the decision to build around Nikola Jokic or Nurkic.
And now that Rip City and the entire NBA community got a glimpse of Nurk Fever last March and since people can see that Jusuf has the potential being just 23 years old, it’s easy to see the big man going at No.10.
Nurkic holds career averages of 10.4 ppg and 7.3 rpg.
Could be a toss up to round out the lottery…
Original Pick #, Career Averages
#46 Jordan Clarkson (14.1 ppg, 3.2 rpg)
#6 Marcus Smart (9.4 ppg, 3.7 rpg)
#23 Rodney Hood (13.0 ppg, 3.0 rpg)
#7 Julius Randle (13.5 ppg, 8.9 rpg)
#10 Elfrid Payton (11.2 ppg, 6.4 apg)
#14 TJ Warren (13.7 ppg, 4.1 rpg)
Now that you’ve seen who is still available to round out the draft lottery of 2014, you know that this is a pretty deep draft. A good majority of these players are doing big things to help their teams advance to the playoffs.
More first round picks…
Here’s the short list of notable guys who would still be available to round out the lottery and the first round in no particular order…
Original Pick #, Career Averages
#30 Kyle Anderson (4.9 ppg, 3.6 rpg)
#11 Doug McDermott (7.9 ppg, 2.3 rpg)
Undrafted Tim Frazier (5.2 ppg, 4.0 apg)
#40 Glenn Robinson III (4.4 ppg, 2.3 rpg)
#9 Noah Vonleh (4.1 ppg, 4.7 rpg)