The draft order has been set. The Finals are approaching. That means it's time for more mocking.
Here are the rules:
- Chip Williams and I are putting on our GM caps and switching picks.
- Trades are possible and encouraged.
- No picking Memphis Tigers because well....why would we?
- We are being logical and unbiased so Chip can't pick Dakari Johnson number one overall.
Since I won the last mock I get to go first.
With the first pick the Minnesota Timberwolves select........Karl Towns (7'0" 248 lbs.) Center, Kentucky.
Jonah: I was hoping the Timberwolves would win the lottery for so many reason. Mainly, I love Towns next to Andrew Wiggins and Ricky Rubio. It's going to be so much fun. Towns was going number one to anyone, but the 76ers (even then who knows what Hinkie would do). He's just a more diverse player than Jahlil Okafor. The Kentucky product can face up, play in the post some, is uber athletic and can play defense. The most important things being that he can space the floor and play defense, which Okafor cannot do, yet.
Chip: Yep. This is what should/will happen. The T'Wolves are very young and incredibly talented.
With the second pick, the Los Angles Lakers select.......Jahlil Okafor (6'11" 272 lbs.) Center, Duke.
Chip: Well, the Lakers did it. They kept their pick by staying in the top five, and even more importantly, they landed a top-two pick. Towns and Okafor are in a class by themselves in this year's draft. Okafor has an offensive skill-set that is advanced far beyond his years. He'll command in instant double-team on the low-block. His defense needs work, obviously, but it isn't beyond repair. I mean, the kid is 19, he'll learn (I hope). The Lakers now have the foundation of a potentially elite front-court with Okafor and Julius Randle.
Chip: Okafor and Randle is going to be so much fun. The Lakers are going to have to score 140 points to win games, but it'll be fun!
With the third pick, the Philadelphia 76ers select........D'Angelo Russell (6'5" 193 lbs.) Guard, Ohio State.
Jonah: D'Angelo Russell is the best guard in this draft and don't let anyone tell you differently. I am in love with Russell's game. He's a nifty passer and great ball handler. I think that's what will make the 76ers want to play him at point guard rather than off the ball. His ability to hit outside shots makes him able to play off the ball, but with this team right now I'm not sure you want him to. The 76ers finally have something resembling an NBA basketball team coming into form. They have potential to be one of my favorite league pass teams next season.
Chip: WHOA! *Bill Simmons voice when the Cavs draft Anthony Bennett No. 1* I must say, I fully expected Mudiay to go here. I think Mudiay is better than Russell, but I guess I could see it the other way. The 76ers are going to be pretty fun if they can get dudes healthy and convince other dudes to come to America.
New York Knicks receive:
No. 53 pick
No. 57 pick
Denver Nuggets receive:
No. 4 pick
Chip: Phil Jackson was noooootttttt happy about falling out of the top two, so what does he do? He goes out and gets arguably the best player on the trading block: Ty Lawson. Lawson is another building block, along with Carmelo, in Jackson's attempt to rebuild the Knicks with haste.
Jonah: I love what the Knicks did here. They picked up a top 10 point guard and jettisoned that awful Calderon contract. Now they have cap space and another actual NBA player to build around.
With the fourth pick, the Denver Nuggets select......Emmanuel Mudiay (6'5" 200 lbs.) Point Guard, Guangdong (USA).
Chip: For Denver, Lawson wants out, so they were able to swing the fourth pick while hanging onto the seventh. They select Mudiay, who will step in right away and replace Lawson. Mudiay has elite size for the point guard position, and his ceiling is very high. He's excellent when he's able to get out and run in transition. His ability to finish at the rim is good but can improve. Mudiay's jump-shot is, well, not very good, to put it lightly. He needs work, but he's super talented with crazy potential. Denver gets a guy they hope can turn into a franchise building block.
Jonah: I'm not a big fan of Mudiay. He's going to need so much work to be productive at this level. He doesn't have a jumpshot and it's not really close to being near where it should be at this point. The Nuggets could be a great fit because of his ability to get out into transition. The Nuggets like to play fast and have the personnel to do so. Now the Nuggets have two top 10 picks and can start rebuilding.
With the fifth pick the Orlando Magic select.......Justise WInslow (6'7" 222 lbs.) Small Forward, Duke.
Jonah: Big draft for lefties! Justise Winslow is my favorite Duke prospect. He improved so much in his first college season. I love his toughness and competitiveness, but that's not what makes him a top 5 pick. His athleticism and defensive energy are incredible for someone so young. The Magic need three point shooting and Winslow was able to build a consistent jumpshot while at Duke. The Magic now have an insane 2/3 defensive combo. Winslow and Oladipo are going to terrify opposing wings. The Magic now have a core of Vucci Mane, Winslow, Elfrid Payton and Aaron Gordon. I'M SMELLIN PLAYOFFS!
Chip: It's going to be very interesting to see what Orlando does at five. The first four picks seem pretty set, but five is where it gets interesting. I like Winslow here, but the Magic have several options.
With the sixth pick, the Sacramento Kings select..........Kristaps Porzingis (7'0" 220 lbs.) Power Forward, Sevilla (Latvia).
Chip: Porzingis' ceiling is absurd. He's an incredibly skilled 7-footer who can stretch the floor for Boogie Cousins. He fits very well into the new-age NBA of pace and space. There is a bit of bustability factor here, but that's pretty standard for foreign players. But the further I dig into Porzingis, the more I like.
Jonah: Kristaps has such a cool name it's going to be such a shame if he is a bust. Every other draft or so there's a foreign player that fits into the new era of basketball. They usually don't work out. Here's hoping Kristaps can break the trend.
With the seventh pick the Denver Nuggets select...... Mario Hezonja (6'8" 200 lbs.) shooting guard, Barcelona.
Jonah: The Nuggets now have two of my favorite foreign guys in the league. Hezonja and Jusuf Nurkic are going to be the best "I could give a shit" duo we have seen in a long time. Hezonja will also fit nicely next to Mudiay due to his shooting range and ability to run the floor. The Nuggets could really mess this up by hiring a coach who wants to slow things down.
Chip: I like Mario in Denver. They've got a nice young core with Nurkic, Mudiay and Rio. #BringMikeD'antoniToDenver
With the eighth pick, the Detroit Pistons select.........Frank Kaminsky (7'1" 230 lbs.) Power Forward, Wisconsin.
Chip: With Greg Monroe on his way out of Detroit, the Pistons go out and get a guy who has been soaring up draft boards. I've seen Kaminsky as high as six to Sacramento. He was the tallest player at the draft combine, and couple that with his terrific skill-set, and Kaminsky will fit very nicely next to Andre Drummond. I kind of feel like he's a safer, poor man's version of Kristaps Porzingis.
Jonah: FRANK THE TANK
FRANK THE TANK
FRANK THE TANK
Great fit even if I think Kaminsky went way too high. Stan has a frountcourt that fits together now.
Chip: For the record, I think Kaminsky went too high, too, but it seems like he's going to go somewhere in the top 10. And this was the best fit. Six is waaaayyyyyyyy too high.
Jonah: If he goes at six it's because him and Vlade Divac bonded over a pack of Parliaments, which is entirely possible.
With the ninth pick the Charlotte Hornets select......Willie Cauley-Stein (7'1", 242 lbs.) Center, Kentucky.
Jonah: PANIC PICK. PANIC PICK. The Hornets weren't sure what to do so they took the guy they know the most about and that fits next to Big Al. Stein is a great defensive player that can guard the 4 and the 5. Some people are saying he can guard the three, but I don't see it. The three in college is so much different than the three in the NBA. I like his defensive skill, but outside of 5 feet he's going to be useless on offense. I wouldn't be shocked to see him fall to the late lottery.
Chip: The Hornets have all the big men. WCS is a guy I've been pretty high for most of the draft process. I just hope he doesn't get lost in the shuffle in Charlotte.
With the tenth pick, the Miami Heat select........Stanley Johnson (6'7" 242 lbs.) Small Forward, Arizona.
Chip: The Heat are elated Johnson slipped to them here. Johnson looks the part of an NBA small forward. He's looks chiseled out of stone and is a powerful, explosive athlete. He can get to the rim at will, and can finish through contact. His jump-shot needs work, and his overall offensive game will be a bit of a project. But he is already a really solid defender who has the tools to turn into an elite defender.
Jonah: I love Stanley Johnson to the Heat. That Miami defense is going to be dangerous next season with Bosh, Whiteside and Johnson on the floor.
With the eleventh pick the Indiana Pacers select......Myles Turner (7'0", 239 lbs.) Center, Texas.
Jonah: All signs are pointing to Roy Hibbert being on his way out of Indiana so the Pacers take the best center left on the board. Turner has a tremendous amount of potential. The Texas center can step out to the three point line and hit down shots. He needs some work on the defensive end to become an elite rim protector, but he has the potential to do it. Frank Vogel wis going to love Turner. I could see the Pacers trading this pick if a deal for veteran center comes along or trading down and taking a point guard.
Chip: Vogel is a good enough coach to get something out of Turner. The guy has tons of talent, and he just need the right guy to harness that and turn him into a really good NBA center.
With the twelfth pick, the Utah Jazz select......Sam Dekker (6'9" 219 lbs.) Small Forward, Wisconsin.
Chip: Dekker is in the running for the Guy-Who-Helped-Himself-The-Most-During-The-NCAA-Tournament Award. He was essential to Wisconsin's Tourney runner-up finish, and he showed why he belongs in the NBA. The guy can stroke it from downtown. He's an above the rim type of athlete. He has the size and length to guard threes or stretch fours in the NBA. And he should fit very nicely next to Gordon Hayward. Utah is building themselves a nice core with Hayward, Dekker, Exum/Burk, Gobert and Favors.
Jonah: That tournament performance rocketed him up draft boards. I could see him going as high as 10. I love his game and the Hayward/Dekker combo could be so much fun to watch.
With the thirteenth pick the Phoenix Suns select.......Devin Booker (6'6" 206 lbs.) Shooting guard, Kentucky.
Jonah: The Suns like shooting threes and Devin Booker can stroke it. Booker may be the best three point shooter in this class. The Suns can move it fast and find Booker. Shooting is one fo the few strengths that can translate immediately to the NBA. Jeff Hornacek will be able to hide behind Brandon Knight and Eric Bledsoe defensively. If the Suns decide not to retain Knight Booker will make a good piece next to Bledsoe going forward.
Chip: Booker fits well here. Shooters usually take at least a couple of years to really reach their full shooting potential, but if the Suns are patient, they got the best pure shooter in this draft.
Oklahoma City Thunder receive:
No. 18 pick
Houston Rockets receive:
No. 14 pick
Jonah: I just don't see very many reasons for the Thunder to keep this pick when they could move it and get a player that makes them better. They fired a great player developer and brought in Billy Donovan who has no track record. He could go back to coaching college tomorrow. Who knows. And they are in win now mode to prevent kissing KD in free agency. They need vets that can contribute now.
Chip: I kind of like what the Rockets did here, but I would have loved it if they had picked Bobby Portis. I'm a Jerian Grant fan, but the Rockets need front court help in the worst way (S/O to Tarik Black).
With the fifteenth pick, the Atlanta Hawks select.........Kelly Oubre Jr. (6'7" 203 lbs.) Small Forward, Kansas.
Chip: If Oubre falls out of the lottery, he's perfect for the Hawks. DeMarre Carroll is a free agent this summer, and Kent Bazemore is a free agent in 2016. Oubre needs time to develop, but he can be a very good 3-and-D player with proper development. He's got good size (6'7" and a 7'2.25" wingspan) for the small forward position. He rebounds well and had a good steal rate in college. He moves extremely well for his size and his footwork is impeccable. His shot selection at Kansas wasn't good and that accounts for some of his poor play. But that's something that's relatively easy to correct in the NBA. A lot of people are out on Oubre, but I'm hanging in there.
Jonah: Another guy with the Bill Self stink. I don't know what to do with him. I do know I'd be terrified of my team picked him.