You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Top Stories

NBA Mock Draft 2017: With lottery order set, first round takes shape

Sporting News logo Sporting News 5/19/2017 Sean Deveney

UP NEXT
UP NEXT

Video by CBS Sports

The lottery is in, and the rich got richer: The Celtics, owners of the top seed in the East and preparing to play in the conference finals starting Wednesday night, will have the first overall pick in this year’s draft.

Keep it? Move it? Use it on a distant relative of Ron Mercer? Who knows? But Boston wound up No. 1 and now the world is its oyster.

NBA DRAFT: Looking back at draft lottery wins that changed the league

Here is how the post-lotto mock draft looks:

Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge, coach Brad Stevens and owner Wyc Grousbeck © (Getty Images) Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge, coach Brad Stevens and owner Wyc Grousbeck

1. Boston (from Brooklyn) — Markelle Fultz, PG, Washington. The Celtics will have options, including a trade. Fultz has established himself as the best bet in this draft, a dynamic offensive player who has drawn comparisons to James Harden. A small forward (Josh Jackson?) might be a better roster fit, but expect the Celtics to rank talent first.

2. LA Lakers — Lonzo Ball, PG, UCLA. Phew. The Lakers could have had to let this pick slide to the Sixers had it fallen out of the top three, but the lottery gods were kind. Now the storybook ending for point man Ball — from the Bruins to the Lakers — seems primed to become reality.

MORE: LaVar says Lonzo will only work out for Lakers

3. Philadelphia — Jayson Tatum, SF, Duke. The Sixers could use a point guard, but that depends, in part, on how much ballhandling Ben Simmons will do. They need shooters who can stretch the floor and work off screens, too, and Tatum would fit the bill.

KANSAS CITY, MO - MARCH 25: Josh Jackson #11 of the Kansas Jayhawks dribbles against Jordan Bell #1 of the Oregon Ducks in the first half during the 2017 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament Midwest Regional at Sprint Center on March 25, 2017 in Kansas City, Missouri. © Jamie Squire/Getty Images KANSAS CITY, MO - MARCH 25: Josh Jackson #11 of the Kansas Jayhawks dribbles against Jordan Bell #1 of the Oregon Ducks in the first half during the 2017 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament Midwest Regional at Sprint Center on March 25, 2017 in Kansas City, Missouri.

4. Phoenix — Josh Jackson, SF, Kansas. Though he made 37.8 percent of his 3-pointers for the Jayhawks, there are some concerns about Jackson’s shooting — a team that sees past that could very well choose him first overall. He can score and has the potential to be an elite defender.

5. Sacramento — De’Aaron Fox, PG, Kentucky. Fox is a blur with the ball, and that speed is something that could change the look of the Kings. Sacramento has some athletic young big men and Buddy Hield, who could potentially team up with Fox in an exciting young backcourt.

MORE: Most regrettable NBA Draft picks in every first-round spot

6. Orlando — Dennis Smith Jr., PG, North Carolina State. It was clear this season that coach Frank Vogel doesn't have a lot of faith in Elfrid Payton as a starter. Ideally, one of the top three point men would fall to the Magic, but barring that, Smith is the next best option.

Frank-Ntilikina-ftr-050917.jpg © Provided by Sporting News Frank-Ntilikina-ftr-050917.jpg

7. Minnesota — Malik Monk, SG, Kentucky. There are concerns about Monk’s size (he’s 6-3), and whether he will be able to defend bigger shooting guards in the NBA. But his ability to create shots and his efficiency from the perimeter make him a worthy risk.

8. New York — Frank Ntilikina, PG, France. Ntilikina averaged only about 18 minutes per game for Strausbourg in the French League, but he has the makings of a solid combo guard, able to make plays when needed but also adept at stretching the floor. Sounds triangle-ish.

9. Dallas — Lauri Markkanen, PF, Arizona. Markkanen could make a fitting understudy for Dirk Nowtizki, a versatile forward in the Nowtizki mold. He averaged 15.6 points and made 42.3 percent of his 3-pointers as a freshman for the Wildcats.

Luke Kennard: NCAA's Most Dangerous Lefty Shooter Is A Righty? © ACC Digital Network Luke Kennard: NCAA's Most Dangerous Lefty Shooter Is A Righty?

10. Sacramento (from New Orleans) — Jonathan Isaac, SF, Florida State. Assuming there are no bizarre trades in the works, the Kings could be in position to follow up their point guard pick by addressing another weak spot, small forward. Isaac’s stock swooned as the regular season wrapped up, but averages of 12.3 rebounds and 2.0 blocks in tourney play helped revive him.

NBA DRAFT COMBINE: Breaking down most memorable performers at lackluster event

11. Charlotte — Terrance Ferguson, SG, Australia. The Hornets will have their pick of middling big men if they want to go in that direction, and they very often do. But they’ve got to address their depth at the wings, and Ferguson — 6-7 and ultra athletic — is the kind of high-risk, high-reward pick the Hornets have been unwilling to make in the past.

12. Detroit — Luke Kennard, SG, Duke. Kennard in the lottery? A stretch, maybe, but Stan Van Gundy is desperate for shooters, having somehow assembled a team that ranked 28th in 3-point percentage. Kennard might lack the size and quickness to be a good NBA defender, but he has proven to be an excellent shooter, likely the best on the board when Detroit picks.

Justin Jackson-040217-GETTY-FTR © Provided by Sporting News Justin Jackson-040217-GETTY-FTR

13. Denver — Justin Jackson, SF, North Carolina. Jackson is 22, and that might be held against him in some quarters. But he was also the ACC Player of the Year, averaging 18.3 points and showing vast improvement in his 3-point shot (37.0 percent). The Nuggets need to solidify their small forward spot.

14. Miami — T.J. Leaf, PF, UCLA. The Heat need an upgrade at power forward, and Leaf could be an ideal fit alongside center Hassan Whiteside. He can knock down perimeter jumpers and play in the paint when Whiteside is on the bench.

15. Portland — Zach Collins, C, Gonzaga. The Blazers will have options in the draft this year, with three picks. Even with Jusuf Nurkic in place, they could use frontcourt depth. Collins needs work, but he has the makings of a versatile big man who will blossom with time. He was a reserve for Gonzaga but showed good shooting form when he did play.

VECENIE: Latest NBA Draft prospect rankings

harry-giles-ftr-050917.jpg © Provided by Sporting News harry-giles-ftr-050917.jpg

16. Chicago — OG Anunoby, SF/PF, Indiana. The Bulls need depth at just about every spot, and their offseason remains murky. Anunoby is a bit of a risk, a defensive-minded guy who needs to improve his shooting and is coming off knee surgery. But, if healthy, he could be a rotation player quickly.

17. Milwaukee — Hamidou Diallo, SG, Kentucky. Diallo was the talk of the Combine with his 44.5-inch vertical leap that had NBA types bumping him into first-round consideration. There is still a chance he could play at Kentucky, but he has enough raw ability to be worth a late first-round pick.

18. Indiana — Harry Giles, PF, Duke. Three knee surgeries in the last four years count as a significant red flag, of course, but the Pacers are in position to take a risk. Giles was never quite the same after returning to the floor for Duke this season, but he still has the potential to be a smooth, athletic, all-around big man to go with Myles Turner.

Texas' Jarrett Allen Dunks All Over The Cowboys © Campus Insiders Texas' Jarrett Allen Dunks All Over The Cowboys

19. Atlanta — Jarrett Allen, C, Texas. Allen was 0 of 7 from the 3-point line during the season, but scouts believe he can develop into a 7-footer with 3-point range over time. That’s gotten his stock moving upward.

20. Portland (from Memphis) — Tyler Lydon, SF/PF, Syracuse. Lydon is a solid combo forward who can knock down perimeter jumpers. The Blazers will also be looking for help at backup point guard, but they could pick that up later.

MORE: 13 of the most ill-timed NBA Draft early entry decisions

21. Oklahoma City — Ivan Rabb, PF, California. It’s rare that a player damages his draft stock by going back to school to work on his game. But Rabb likely did just that. He is an excellent rebounder and a solid interior scorer, which is pretty much what he was last year. He could go in the teens, but he probably would have been a lottery pick last year.

ike-anigbogu-ftr-050917.jpg © Provided by Sporting News ike-anigbogu-ftr-050917.jpg

22. Brooklyn (from Washington) — John Collins, PF/C, Wake Forest. Collins got better as the year went on, working as a post-up big man in a Wake Forest offense that stresses post-up big men. He averaged 19.2 points and 9.8 rebounds, but shot just one 3-pointer in two college seasons.

23. Toronto (from L.A. Clippers) — Ike Anigbogu, C, UCLA. There is plenty of upside with Anigbogu, who was overshadowed in his time with the Bruins but has a good frame, athleticism and defensive instincts. The Raptors still are looking to add size.

24. Utah — Justin Patton, C, Creighton. Patton is an athletic, well-rounded 7-footer who fueled the Jays’ surprising start and played well enough over the course of the year to establish himself as a clear first-rounder. But he struggled down the stretch and did not impress in Chicago.

Frank Mason III #0 of the Kansas Jayhawks shoots the ball against the UC Davis Aggies during the first round of the 2017 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament at BOK Center on March 17, in Tulsa, Okla. © J Pat Carter/Getty Images Frank Mason III #0 of the Kansas Jayhawks shoots the ball against the UC Davis Aggies during the first round of the 2017 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament at BOK Center on March 17, in Tulsa, Okla.

25. Orlando (from Toronto) — Kyle Kuzma, PF, Utah. Kuzma bolstered his stock quite a bit in Chicago, showing some offensive versatility that has teams thinking first round. If he can shoot well enough to show that he can be a stretch 4, his first-round spot will be there.

MORE: Biggest winners from the combine measurement process

26. Portland (from Cleveland) — Frank Mason III, PG, Kansas. Mason was the Naismith Player of the Year after averaging 20.9 points as a senior. He measured just 6-0 with shoes, but his combination of speed, experience and shooting ability make him an NBA-ready backup point guard.

27. Brooklyn (from Boston) — P.J. Dozier, SG, South Carolina. Dozier is an excellent athlete who stands about 6-7 with a 6-11 wingspan. He can play some point guard, but his primary role will be as a defensive guard on the wing. 

KANSAS CITY, MO - MARCH 25: Jordan Bell #1 of the Oregon Ducks dunks the ball in the second half against the Kansas Jayhawks during the 2017 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament Midwest Regional at Sprint Center on March 25, 2017 in Kansas City, Missouri. © Jamie Squire/Getty Images KANSAS CITY, MO - MARCH 25: Jordan Bell #1 of the Oregon Ducks dunks the ball in the second half against the Kansas Jayhawks during the 2017 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament Midwest Regional at Sprint Center on March 25, 2017 in Kansas City, Missouri.

28. LA Lakers (from Houston) — Jordan Bell, SF/PF, Oregon. Bell is undersized and he will lean on the Draymond Green comparisons to tempt teams into a first-round selection. He was dominant defensively in Chicago, and likely bumped himself into the first round.

29. San Antonio — Tony Bradley, C, North Carolina. Bradley did not play at the Combine, but his 12.0 percent body fat was second-most at the camp. Still, he is athletic for his size and moves well. If he stays in, he will probably be a first-rounder.

30. Utah (from Golden State) — Semi Ojeleye, SF, SMU. Ojeleye was the anchor for SMU’s surprising success, averaging 18.9 points and shooting 42.4 percent from the 3-point line. He is 6-7 and played power forward in college, but at that size, he will have to show he can transition to the 3 in the NBA.


Aaron Judge leads the major leagues in home runs in his first full season. Next Story

How Judge could become baseball's richest player

AdChoices
AdChoices

More From Sporting News

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon