Katz Korner is back with another mock draft. This one for the NBA. Since I waited a while to send this one out, there will only be one mock this time (sorry guys). I have done both rounds so without further a due, here we go.
1) New Orleans Hornets- Anthony Davis, PF, Kentucky
If it wasn’t obvious already the Hornets moved Emeka Okafor to make room for their incoming power forward. Davis should be what everyone expects at the next level, so we’ll move on.
2) Charlotte Bobcats- Harrison Barnes, SF, North Carolina
Previously, many would have told you that Michael Kidd-Gilchrist was a lock here. A month ago, I was on record saying the Bobcats would for sure screw this up and sure enough they have. MKG has all of a sudden become a third option here and their top two are Barnes and Robinson, according to sources.
The reason why I have Barnes here is because Jordan and his crew loved Barnes when he worked out for them. He is a freak scorer and with a more consistent game can be dominant.
Barnes at the next level does need some work, however. He cannot play defense whatsoever and his jump shot is severely inconsistent. Barnes also has the overwhelming tendency to disappear in big games, which is another thing he will have to correct to be great at the next level.
3) Washington Wizards- Bradley Beal, SG, Florida
The Wizards get a gift here. Beal in my opinion is the superstar of the draft. He is a phenomenal scorer, a willing passer, and a great rebounder for his size. The Wizards get a tremendous backcourt compliment for John Wall here and build one of the best backcourts in the league for years to come.
4) Cleveland Cavaliers- Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, SF, Kentucky
The Cavs need a scorer badly to compliment Kyrie Irving. While some may think that Kidd-Gilchrist’s jump shot needs work and he’s not polished offensively, MKG can get to the rim at will and he can help the Cavs immensely on defense. He’s a freak athlete as well.
5) Sacramento Kings-Thomas Robinson, PF, Kansas
Let’s keep this simple. The Kings need size desperately and Robinson fits their need at power forward. He rebounds well, plays great defense, scores in the low post, and as is the common theme, is a great athlete. Easy pick.
6) Portland Trail Blazers via New Jersey Nets- Damian Lilliard, PG, Weber St.
Lilliard is a beast if you ask me. He’s a great scorer with gym range and has the ability to attack at will. Yes he didn’t play big time college ball and yes he needs to become a better defender. However, his scoring ability is undeniable and since the Trail Blazers need a point guard and scoring in their backcourt, Lilliard is a perfect fit.
7) Golden State Warriors- Dion Waiters, SG, Syracuse
Because of Terrence Jones’ poor workout in Golden State and their midseason acquisition of Andrew Bogut, expect the Warriors to slide Klay Thompson to the small forward position and look for a shooting guard with this pick. The question is whether they choose Waiters, Jeremy Lamb, or Austin Rivers.
The reason why I suspect Waiters is because of how many teams love his upside. He has great work ethic, is a premier slashing guard, and with an improved jump shot can take the league by storm. Waiters is coveted by most teams picking in the second half of the lottery, so Waiters to Golden State makes sense.
8) Toronto Raptors- Andre Drummond, C, Connecticut
This pick will either be Henson or Drummond based on the scenario I have played out. The guards the Raptors want are taken and the players of size they want are still there.
So why Drummond over Henson? Drummond has tremendous raw ability and can change games on the defensive end. He is a tremendous rebounder, and with some work can become a dominant center in this league for years to come.
9) Detroit Pistons- Meyers Leonard, C, Illinois
Leonard and Henson are the top two choices for the Pistons if Andre Drummond doesn’t fall to them. I suspect this pick to be Leonard over Henson because Leonard is a better scorer, although he still needs some work, and despite his lack of strength he rebounds very well.
Also, the Pistons can move Monroe to the four, where he can become a matchup nightmare for teams.
10) New Orleans Hornets via Minnesota Timberwolves- Austin Rivers, SG, Duke
The Hornets need more scoring and Rivers can apply that immediately. He is a little inconsistent on the offensive end and he can’t play defense at all right now. He barely contained Reggie Bullock in two meetings against the Tar Heels and it wasn’t because Bullock didn’t have open looks.
However, Rivers has potential through the roof, more potential than last year’s first overall pick Kyrie Irving in my opinion. He could easily become a 20-plus point scorer because of his incredible scoring ability and with a consistent jumper could be one of the best players in this class. He also takes and makes big shots. Just ask Roy Williams and the Tar Heels.
11) Portland Trail Blazers- Tyler Zeller, C, North Carolina
The Blazers need size desperately, and Zeller is the best center available. He has a terrific post game on both sides of the court and with some help in the basketball IQ department, he can flourish as well.
12) Milwaukee Bucks- John Henson, PF, North Carolina
The Bucks unfortunately miss out on both their centers in my mock, and in that case they would probably take the best big man available.
While I absolutely despise John Henson, many scouts like his defensive presence and rebounding ability. Henson goes to the Bucks at the 12.
13) Phoenix Suns- Jeremy Lamb, SG, Connecticut
The Suns need a wing scorer badly. They need an offensive game changer. They also could use a good defensive player with active hands and the ability to defend multiple positions. It would be an added bonus if this guy were a freak athlete to play their up-and-down style. Yes, I did just describe Jeremy Lamb.
14) Houston Rockets- Terrence Jones, PF, Kentucky
Jones is one of the more interesting cases in this draft. There are times where he looks worthy of a top five pick, and then there are times where he doesn’t look like a first round selection. He can be great in the post and stretch defenses with his mid-range game, but then there are times where he falls in love with the three and plays right into opponent’s defenses. He can be a big time shot blocker, or he could disappear defensively.
The three things that he is for sure at the next level is a great athlete, a great passer, and a great perimeter defender. His size will get the Rockets attention, but this is truly a hit or miss pick.
15) Philadelphia 76ers- Jared Sullinger, PF, Ohio St.
With Sullinger’s latest injury issues coming into play, he has fallen in this draft. A team like the Sixers could easily reap the benefits of him falling. They desperately need size and a backup for Elton Brand. Sullinger has a good post game on both sides and is a good rebounder. He makes a lot of sense for the Sixers here.
16) Houston Rockets via New York Knicks- Fab Melo, C, Syracuse
Once again the Rockets take a questionable pick. There’s no doubt in this scenario that they would go Melo because they need a center. However, I’m not sure Melo fits at the next level.
First of all, the man has zero basketball IQ. Second, he is incredibly raw on the offensive end and he gets blocks what my friends and I call “the Amar’e Stoudemire way,” meaning he once a game happens to play help defense at the right time and gets a block. Sorry Rockets fans, this is not a draft you’re going to be happy about.
17) Dallas Mavericks- Kendall Marshall, PG, North Carolina
I love this pick. Marshall probably could benefit from learning behind a good point guard for a year and there’s not one better than one who is one of the best to ever play the position in Jason Kidd. Kidd can teach Marshall a more complete offensive game, particularly in the scoring department. He can also improve Marshall’s court vision, if that’s possible. This scenario could make Marshall a force for a long time.
If Kidd doesn’t come back, Marshall may have to start right away. In this case he could provide an excellent replacement for Kidd as a floor general. Just because Kidd could not be there doesn’t mean that Marshall isn’t a great fit. He absolutely is.
18) Minnesota Timberwolves via Utah Jazz- Terrence Ross, SG, Washington
An absolute gift here for the Timberwolves. Ross is one of my favorite players in this draft. He has immense scoring ability and the capability to take over games at will. His defense is better than people think and he is a solid rebounder for a two guard. Love the steal here for the T-Wolves.
19) Orlando Magic- Perry Jones III, PF/SF, Baylor
Jones’s position at the next level is a bit unknown, but what is known is the fact that he is a top five talent. The negative is that he lacks consistency in every area and needs to become a smarter player.
Despite this, I feel that he’s the pick for the Magic. He can stretch the floor and possibly, although unlikely, provide the Magic with a scoring replacement for Howard.
20) Denver Nuggets- Arnett Moultrie, PF, Mississippi St.
Moultrie can be a great addition for the Nuggets because of their needs for size and rebounding off the bench. He is a phenomenal rebounder and can stretch defenses with his mid-range game. Great fit here for Denver.
21) Boston Celtics- Royce White, SF, Iowa St.
The Celtics have made it known that they covet Royce White and if he is there they will use one of their two first rounders on him. He’s essentially a power forward that is slightly undersized with tremendous ball handling. If Doc can make it work, this could be a great value pick.
22) Boston Celtics via Los Angeles Clippers- Andrew Nicholson, PF, St. Bonaventure
I like this pick a lot. Nicholson is an impressive power forward on the offensive end. He can stretch defenses and open up things offensively. He rebounds the ball fairly well, and since Doc can teach everyone how to be better defenders, this pick is a great fit.
23) Atlanta Hawks- Moe Harkless, SF, St. John’s
The Hawks desperately need someone to step in and play the small forward position consistently and well. Harkless is extremely lengthy and a very good defender. His jump shot needs work, but he is a good finisher around the rim and can contribute from day one, something the Hawks need with this pick.
24) Cleveland Cavaliers via Los Angeles Lakers- Will Barton, SG, Memphis
Barton is an athletic specimen. He has incredible reach and length and can jump through the roof. He is a great defender and has an awesome mid-range game. He does need some work in some other areas, but the Cavs need a shooting guard so badly and he is rising on scouts boards. Barton to Cleveland is the pick.
25) Memphis Grizzlies- Draymond Green, SF, Michigan St.
I’ve been back and forth on this pick between Green and Tony Wroten Jr. The reason why I ultimately decided on Green is because I have a funny suspicion that the Rudy Gay trade rumors are true. Green plays solid defense, rebounds, and is a born winner.
26) Indiana Pacers- Tony Wroten Jr. PG, Washington
Ladies and gentlemen, the steal of the draft. Wroten does lack a consistent jump shot, but this dude can ball. His passing ability is phenomenal, he is a great finisher in traffic and around the basket. He plays good defense and he’s a great athlete. He will be a steal for the Pacers.
27) Miami Heat-Quincy Miller, SF, Baylor
Miami needs… nothing, which means this is the perfect time to take a risk pick. Miller has top 10 talent, and since he will have the luxury of no pressure, he can improve his jump shot, defensive ability, and potentially become a very solid NBA starter.
28) Oklahoma City Thunder- John Jenkins, SG, Vanderbilt
Just in case the Thunder struggle to resign Harden long-term this summer, they’re going to need someone that shoots the lights out at the shooting guard position to replace him. Jenkins is that guy. He really doesn’t do much else, but he can be deadly from anywhere on the court.
29) Chicago Bulls- Evan Fournier, SG, France
The only foreign player in the first round, Fournier with some more experience can become a really good role player in this league. He has a good jump shot, solid range, and is sneaky athletic. The Bulls can afford to leave him overseas for a year, so this fit makes sense.
30) Golden State Warriors via San Antonio Spurs- Festus Ezeli, C, Vanderbilt
Ezeli is, to put polite, extremely clumsy. He plays very good defense and rebounds, but sometimes looks like he’s sleeping on the court. If the Warriors can make him focus and improve his offensive game immensely, he can be a great backup for Andrew Bogut since Bogut has injury problems.
31) Charlotte Bobcats- Doron Lamb, SG, Kentucky
32) Washington Wizards- Jeff Taylor, SF, Vanderbilt
33) Cleveland Cavaliers- Jared Cunningham, SG, Oregon St.
34) Cleveland Cavaliers via New Orleans Hornets- Marquis Teague, PG, Kentucky
35) Golden State Warriors via Brooklyn Nets- Miles Plumlee, PF, Duke
36) Sacramento Kings- Kyle O’Quinn, C, Norfolk St.
37) Toronto Raptors- Tyshawn Taylor, PG, Kansas
38) Denver Nuggets via Golden State Warriors- Tu Holloway, PG, Xavier
39) Detroit Pistons- Kostas Papanikolaou, SF, Greece
40) Portland Trail Blazers via Minnesota Timberwolves- Orlando Johnson, SG, UC Santa Barbara
41) Portland Trail Blazers- Darius Miller, SF, Kentucky
42) Milwaukee Bucks- Tomas Santorasky, SG, Czech Republic
43) Atlanta Hawks via Phoenix Suns- Furkan Aldemir, PF, Turkey
44) Detroit Pistons via Houston Rockets- Drew Gordon, PF, New Mexico
45) Philadelphia 76ers- Kevin Murphy, SF, Tennessee Tech
46) Washington Wizards from New Orleans Hornets via Dallas Mavericks- William Buford, SG, Ohio St
47) Utah Jazz- Marcus Denmon, SG, Missouri
48) New York Knicks- Scotty Machado, PG, Iona
49) Orlando Magic- Henry Sims, C, Georgetown
50) Denver Nuggets- Jae Crowder, SF, Marquette
51) Boston Celtics- Darius Johnson-Odom, SF, Marquette
52) Golden State Warriors via Atlanta Hawks- Kevin Jones, SF/PF, West Virginia
53) Los Angeles Clippers- Mike Scott, PF, Virginia
54) Philadelphia 76ers via Memphis Grizzlies- Eric Griffin, PF, Campbell
55) Dallas Mavericks via Los Angeles Lakers- Hollis Thompson, SF, Georgetown
56) Toronto Raptors via Indiana Pacers- Tony Mitchell, SG, Alabama
57) New Jersey Nets via Miami Heat- J’Covan Brown, PG, Texas
58) Minnesota Timberwolves via Oklahoma City Thunder- JayMychal Green, PF, Alabama
59) San Antonio Spurs- Ricardo Ratliffe, PF, Missouri
60) Los Angeles Lakers via Chicago Bulls- Casper Ware, PG, Long Beach St.