By Hocine LOUKKAF on 12/1/2019
With Wiseman suspended until January, Edwards has taken the first spot of the mock draft. In the battle of guards, Haliburton may be the least hyped but the most efficient on offense and defense.
#1 Anthony Edwards, 6-5 SG , Georgia, FR (20.6pts 5.9rbds 3as)
With Wiseman suspended until Jnauary, Edwards makes a strong case as the potential number one pick. A complete SG who can still improve his percentages (41% fg) and consistency (two 6pts games), he’s also a nice defender (2.3st 0.9bl). His 33pt half against MSU have been one of the most memorable showing over the last years.
#2 James Wiseman, 7-1 C, Memphis, FR (19.7pts 10.7rbds 3bl in 23min)
A pure big,Wiseman will have to wait until January to play due to suspension. He will fit perfectly for a team which needs a big may slip because shooting is so hyped. Very efficient scorer, good FT shooter. Can be a nice rim protector and offensive anchor.
#3 Tyrese Haliburton, 6-5 PG, Iowa State, SO (15.7pts 8.9as 6rbds 51% fg 38% 3pt 3st)
Only a year older than Ball/Maledon and the same age as Anthony, there’s no reason not to have Haliburton there. Reluctant to shoot during his freshman year, Haliburton has more than doubled his scoring stats while still keeping his percentages high and being a top five passer in college basketball. Moreover, he is a nice defender whose only interest is to make the team win. If you need a PG to lead your team, he may be the best choice.
#4 Lamelo Ball, 6-6 PG, Illara Hawks, 2001 (17pts 7.4rbds 6.8as)
From hoops celebrity to potential top 5 pick, it has been a long journey for Lamelo who is now playing in Australia. Of course, he has that size, creativity and passing ability that help him having two triple doubles in his last two games. Yet, his inconsistency from three (2/9, 5/11, 1/5, 4/7, 1/11 in the last five games) is so flagrant that it penalizes his stock and his team. A potential number one pick if he can improve that shot selection.
#5 Theo Maledon, 6-4 PG, ASVEL (France), 2001 (6.4pts 3.6as 1.2rbds Euroleague)
Maledon may not be as hyped as the other guard prospects but he’s arguably in the toughest situation. Playing for a Euroleague team with Jordan Taylor as main competition may limit his playing time, but it also helps him learn from his mistakes and his older teammate. Tony Parker’s protege has proved at several occasions why he was a projected top 10 (7pts 5as 1to vs Fenerbahce, 10pts 7as 0to vs Efes).
#6 Deni Avdija, 6-8 SF, Maccabi Tel Aviv (Israel), 2001 (2.2pts 1.9rbds Euroleague 8.3pts 6.7rbds 1.7as Israel)
The Euro U21 MVP struggles from the same kind of situation as Maledon playing for Maccabi Tel Aviv. His playing time in Euroleague is even more limited (2.2pts 1.9rbds in 11min) while the Israeli championship is not exactly the top championship compared to Spain, Italy or even France/Germany. Yet, Avdija is a mature player with a complete skillset and deceptive athleticism. Enough to warrant him a top 10 pick.
#7 Nico Mannion, 6-3 PG, Arizona, FR (16pts 5.6as 47% 3pt)
Maybe a notch below the other PG prospects due to his lack of length, Mannion has a nice freshman season with Arizona and could be a top 10 pick by the end of the year. A nice shooter and creative passer, he could work on limiting his turnovers but has all the tools you need from a floor general.
#8 Killian Hayes, 6-5 PG, Ratiopharm Ulm, 2001 (12.5pts 6.9as)
The second French guard prospect, Hayes has benefited a lot from leaving Cholet for Ulm and playing under former Euroleague star Jaka Lakovic. After struggling with his turnovers (still 3.5per game), Hayes has been better lately with two games with only one turnover. He’s still inconsistent from three (31%), yet a far better number than his 18% from last year with Cholet.
#9 Jaden McDaniels, 6-9 SF, Washington, FR (13.9pts 5.3rbds 2.5as)
McDaniels has the tools, length and athleticism to be a top 5 pick. Yet, you’re waiting for better production from someone with his size at SF. His rebounding and defense numbers are decent (1.5st 0.8bl) while he’s clearly not been efficient thus far on offense with 39% fg and 29% from three, numbers he needs to mprove not to slip lower in the lottery.
#10 Onyeka Okongwu, 6-10 PF/C, USC, FR (16.8pts 8.4rbds 3.1bl)
Lamelo’s former teammate has been a terror on the court for the Trojans. Shooting almost 60% from the field and a nicer 80% from the free throw line, Okongwu also is one of the best shot blockers in the nation with more than three swats a game. He could be a Capela type of center as a good runner who finishes lobs, protects the rim and that you can’t not foul in the clutch time.
#11 Oscar Tshiebwe, 6-9 PF/C, WVU, FR (12.5pts 9.8rbds 1.2bl)
A rawer prospect than other C prospects, Tshiebwe is an incredible athlete who could end up the best big of this draft. His 70% from the free throw line is a good sign while he already had two spectacular showings against Pittsburgh (20pts 17rbds 3bl) and Wichita State (19pts 18rbds)
#12 Cole Anthony, 6-3 PG, UNC, FR (20.7pts 7.3rbds 4as)
A year older than most freshmen, Anthony is already leading UNC and showing his grit in every game. The question is, can he be a real PG or is he just a diminutive SG ? His 4as/3.6to is bad and his overall 39%, albeit with 36% from three, needs to be improved.
#13 Aaron Nesmith, 6-7 SF, Vanderbilt, SO (23.7pts 5rbds 54% 3pt)
Maybe a surprise that high, the Vanderbilt sophomore has a gift you can’t teach shooting. Averaging 54% from three with a stunning nine attempts per game (sic), Nesmith had only one game under 42% from three, and he still scored 36% from three in this game. A decent defender, his shooting could be enough to guarantee him a lottery selection.
#14 Isaiah Stewart, 6-9 PF/C, Washington,FR (17.3pts 6.7rbds 2.2bl)
Projected in the top 10 by most draft addicts, Stewart looks more like a Dale/Anthony Davis type of big men than your offensive anchor. He is a rock solid center that defends hard but may lacks some footspeed in the fast running modern NBA.
#15 RJ Hampton, 6-5 SG/PG, New Zealand Breakers, 2001 (10pts 4.4rbds 2.6as)
More of a combo than most other guard prospects, Hampton is still hard to evaluate. Neither is he a pure passing PG (2.6as for 1.6to) nor has he proved he was a flat out scorer (one game only with 20pts or more). He still is a nice talent with length who was a top five senior in his class and has room to improve.
#16 Vernon Carey Jr, 6-11 C, Duke, FR (18.9pts 9.6rbds 2.4bl)
Carey may lack some degree of length or athleticism but at least he produces. Shooting more than 60% from the field and displaying the ability to protect the rim and rebound, Carey will help a team in need of a big. Could still work on his overall IQ and FT shooting.
#17 Jay Scrubb, 6-6 SG/SF, John Logan College (Juco), SO (22.7pts 6.7rbds 2as)
The Louisville commit has all the tools to be a top scorer in the NBA with long arms, a 40in vertical leap and a sweet stroke. Yet, he may already be concerned with next year as his 3pt % has fallen from 46% to 22% (10/44 since the start of the season) while he’s averaging only 2as for 4.3tos.
#18 Paul Reed, 6-9 PF, DePaul, JR (15.2pts 10.4rbds 3.5bl 1.6st)
Reed may be the most complete PF in this draft. Shooting 43% from three, albeit on small attempts number, he’s an impressive rim protector and rebounder who has helped turn DePaul into a winning institution, which had not been the case for more than a decade.
#19 Jamih’us Ramsey, 6-4 SG, Texas Tech, FR (17.3pts 5.9rbds 46% 3pt)
Still inconsistent (three games with 75% or more and three games with 25% or less from three), the Texas Tech freshman is built like a football player and has the tools to be a nice two-way player down the road. Maybe a better prospect than Culver last season.
#20 Romeo Weems, 6-7 SF, DePaul, FR (9.1pts 5.9rbds 2.1as 1.6st 0.7bl 44% 3pt)
Playing behind Paul Reed, Weems has the kind of versatility to develop into both an offensive and defensive Swiss knife in the NBA.
#21 Obi Toppin, 6-9 PF, Dayton, SO (23pts 8.3rbds 1.5bl 50% 3pt)
Toppin’s impressive numbers may be limied by the fact that he’s an old sophomore who will turn 22 in March. His lack of footspeed and leaping reactivity may also limit his defensive potential in the NBA.
#22 Tyrese Maxey, 6-3 SG/PG, Kentucky, FR (14.7pts 2.9rbds)
The Kentucky freshman has been the offensive leader of his team. He’s maybe too much of a combo now with work to do on his outside shooting (34% from three) and overall defense (3.6rbds 0.7st in 32min) to be considered a better prospect.
#23 Jeremiah Robinson-Earl, Villanova, FR (13.8pts 9.8rbds 2.5as)
Robinson-Earl has been a nice scorer but his lack of length (0.3bl) hurts him as a PF. At least, he has displayed nice efficiency from three (40%).
#24 Saddiq Bey, 6-8 SF, Villanova, SO (13.7pts 4.7rbds 2.7as 48% 3pt)
Bey is having a nice sophomore season as he show the type of versatile player he is. Shooting more than 40% from three while averaging an almost 3a/to ratio are nice indicators for a glue guy SF.
#25 Jalen Smith, 6-10 PF, Maryland, SO (14.1pts 9.4rbds 1.9bl)
Smith is the perfect player you need to build a solid paint. Yet, he has shown no potential of an outside shot despite shooting 78% from the FT line, which could hinder his possibility to even be a first round pick as a PF.
#27 Mamadi Diakite, 6-9 PF, Virginia, SR (13.9pts 7.3rbds 50% 3pt)
A late blooming prospect, Diakite has doubled his scoring stats while playing only nine more minutes. He’s still the same hard nosed defender, two strengths that could make him a first round pick.
#26 Jordan Nwora, 6-8 SF, Louisville, SR (21.9pts 6.9rbds 50% 3pt)
Limited by his lack of athleticism and defensive potential (0.7st 0.15bl), Nwora has become a potential stretch combo with 50% from three on almost six attempts.
#28 Joel Ayayi, 6-5 SG/PG, Gonzaga, SO (9.2pts 6.6rbds 3.7as 44% 3pt)
After redshirting and playing limited minutes his freshman season, the former World Cup U19 All-Team member is having a nice season displaying his versatility as a combo guard. With five games with at least 7rbds and 4as while shooting 40+% from three and averaging a 3 a/to ratio, Ayayi has the numbers to end up higher in this draft if he keeps playing like that.
#29 Aaron Henry, 6-6 SF/SG, Michigan State, SO (12.1pts 2.8rbds 2as 1st 1bl 47% 3pt)
After his freshman season and with several players gone, we could expect a better sophomore season from Henry. Though, Henry has become a far better shooter while still keeping his turnovers low. If he can improve his weak rebounding numbers considering his physical tools, he could end up being picked in the early 20s.
#30 Filip Petrusev, 6-11 PF/C, Gonzaga, SO (16.1pts 8.7rbds 1.4l)
Petrusev has been the leader of a strong Gonzaga team this season. He’s limited in term of length and athleticism but is a mature player who could produce off the bench or alongside a more athletic stretch big.