For more mocks, check out my NBA Mock Draft Database
7= Star player, multiple All-Star games
6= Strong sidekick player, #2 player on elite team, top player on lottery team
5= Solid starter, among the top 100 players in the league
4= Borderline starter/strong bench player, 5th, 6th, 7th man
3= Rotation player in a 8, 9, 10 man rotation
2= fringe roster player, barely on the team, mop up minute player
1= no NBA future
1. Washington Wizards 26-56
The debate here is between John Wall and Evan Turner. There are no other possibilities here. Wall is the better player, but Turner would fill a bit more of a need. With Randy Foye, Javaris Crittenton, and Gilbert Arenas (who they have said will be back next year), point guard is probably the one position they don’t need. Turner is an all around player who can play both shooting guard and small forward for this team. I think it’ll be interesting to see how much better the Wizards think Wall is than Turner. If they think their talent levels are close enough, I think this will be Turner. However, I would not bet that’s the case for now and I’m going with Kentucky PG John Wall. The last small forward drafted #1 overall was LeBron James and he’s pretty much a guard in a small forward’s body. #1 overall picks are almost always guards or centers.
NBA Comparison: Derrick Rose
Trade: 76ers trade the 2nd pick to Minnesota for the 4th pick and the 16th pick
2. Minnesota Timberwolves (via PHI) 15-67
The ideal scenario for both teams. Ohio State SF/SG Evan Turner would be the perfect fit for the Timberwolves, but he won’t last until 4. He can play both guard and small forward for them and would give them the best chance to entice Ricky Rubio to come over to the states and play for them when he can next offseason. He’ll pair well with Corey Brewer on the wings. The 76ers don’t need a swingman like Turner, but they can take either Derrick Favors or DeMarcus Cousins at 4 and fill their need for a big man. If this deal doesn’t get done, Turner is still the likely pick and Thaddeus Young would move to power forward and Iguodala and Turner would play on the wing for the 76ers. Don’t rule out Favors or Cousins for the Sixers though, if this deal doesn’t get done.
NBA Comparison: Grant Hill
3. New Jersey Nets 12-70
This pick will probably be between Derrick Favors and DeMarcus Cousins for the Nets as they need another inside presence and those two are the two best available. I’ll mock Georgia Tech PF Derrick Favors here because he’s more of a natural power forward, while Cousins is more of a natural center. They already have Brook Lopez at center. Also, Favors has some character issues that could scare off the Nets.
NBA Comparison: Al Jefferson
4. Philadelphia 76ers (via MIN) 27-55
As I said before, the 76ers will either take Favors or Cousins here. Dalembert is not cutting it for this team at center and Kentucky C DeMarcus Cousins fits the draft range and their need very well. They also pick up pick #16 in the process where they can take a valuable role player off the bench or use it in a deal to get rid of Elton Brand’s salary.
NBA Comparison: Zach Randolph
5. Sacramento Kings 25-57
The Kings can just take best player available here without much thought because Syracuse SF Wesley Johnson is the best available and plays a need position. My main concern with him is he’s 23 already and still has trouble creating his own shot, despite his athleticism, but he’s a hell of a defender.
NBA Comparison: Gerald Wallace
6. Golden State Warriors 26-56
Don Nelson is still in Golden State so this will be one of the players he thinks fits his system well, as all of his picks are. Georgetown PF/C Greg Monroe is the most versatile big man in college basketball. He can run the floor, hit the outside shot, and pass from the block, all three things that are key to be able to play in Don Nelson’s offense.
NBA Comparison: Brad Miller
7. Detroit Pistons 27-55
Its sad to see the Pistons down here, especially because of how good they used to be a few years ago and because of how down the entire city of Detroit has been since the recession. A big part of their struggles this season is a lack of physicality, especially on the block. North Carolina PF/C Ed Davis can play either power forward or center for this team next season and provide interior toughness. He’s not a gifted low post scorer, but this team already has enough guys who can put the ball in the bucket. Davis is out with an injury, but he still has top ten upside.
NBA Comparison: Al Horford
8. Los Angeles Clippers 29-53
No major needs for this team other than time to mature, come together, and Blake Griffin to get healthy, so they can go best available player and add another young athlete to the mix. Wake Forest F Al-Farouq Aminu is a raw combo forward that fits that description. He would be a good replacement for Al Thornton and a decent backup plan assuming they can’t get LeBron this offseason.
NBA Comparison: Marvin Williams
9. Utah Jazz 53-29
I’ve had the Jazz taking a power forward here in recent weeks, but rumors out there say the Jazz have Nevada SF Luke Babbitt atop their draft board. It makes some sense. They need Babbitt’s shooting ability with Kyle Korver a free agent and Babbitt could start at small forward for this team longterm. They do have Paul Millsap at power forward so it’s not a huge need.
NBA Comparison: Keith Van Horn
10. Indiana Pacers 32-50
The Pacers need some athleticism inside and take one of the best players available in Baylor PF/C Ekpe Udoh. The Pacers have some decent depth inside, but Udoh is a project player with huge upside. He has the potential to grow into the dominant shot blocker they lack right now, but at the same time, the Pacers have enough interior depth at the moment that Udoh won’t have to play much right away.
NBA Comparison: Emeka Okafor
11. New Orleans Hornets 37-45
The Saints would probably want an athletic wing player strong on defense here to compliment Peja, Morris Peterson, and Marcus Thornton, but I don’t think they’ll make a reach for someone like Devin Ebanks. Marshall C Hassan Whiteside would be best available here and gives them some more depth inside along with David West and Emeka Okafor.
NBA Comparison: Patrick O’Bryant
12. Memphis Grizzlies 40-42
The Grizzlies are somehow at .500, but they still find themselves in the lottery. They can use this opportunity to take a big time college basketball player again and luckily, they can get a steal here with Kansas C Cole Aldrich. They did draft a center last year, but Hasheem Thabeet has not shown himself to be much yet and Aldrich would compliment him well as they share duties inside.
NBA Comparison: Joel Pryzbilla
13. Toronto Raptors 40-42
The Raptors have to deal with the threat of Chris Bosh leaving this offseason and even if he returns, they do have a need inside which is why Kentucky C Daniel Orton makes sense here. He adds a much needed shot blocker to the mix and has the potential to be a replacement for Chris Bosh. His offensive game is raw and he didn’t play a ton at Kentucky, but he has skills and he could have been a top 5 pick in 2011 had he stayed another year and played well. He is a risk because he’s so raw, but I think they’ll be willing to take the risk to hit a homerun here.
NBA Comparison: Joel Anthony
14. Houston Rockets 42-40
The Rockets have good supporting pieces, but lack a star. Kansas SG/SF Xavier Henry is a great scorer and has more upside than anyone on the board. He’ll be that big time scorer they’ve lacked this season.
NBA Comparison: Martell Webster
Go on to picks 15-30