The 2017 NBA Draft class is being hyped as the best in over a decade with an abundance of star power at the top and plenty of depth to go along with that. And now that we're just a couple of weeks from hitting the halfway point of the NBA season, we are starting to get a sense of which teams will be in great position to land those future superstars. So, without further ado, here is Version 1.0 our 2017 Mock NBA Draft based on the current NBA standings:
1) Philadelphia 76ers - Lonzo Ball, PG, Fr., UCLA Bruins - 6'6", 190 lbs.
The Sixers need backcourt help, and with plenty of scoring options in the frontcourt, I think they'd pass on a score-first guard like Markelle Fultz and go for the best pass-first point guard in the class in Ball. He just has a natural feel for the game, ranking second in the country in assists per game (8.3). Ball has also flashed good shooting ability (43.3 percent from three), and a 6-foot-6, can play either guard position.
Yes, he needs to add strength, but that's about the only negative thing you can say about Jackson's game. He's as athletic as any player in this class, makes threes with regularity, is great at attacking the rim and - most importantly - is an extremely smart player. Jackson also has the passing and ball-handling abilities to play point forward, making him that much more valuable. Boston needs players with versatility, and Jackson would provide that.
3) Phoenix Suns - Jayson Tatum, Fr., SF, Duke Blue Devils - 6'8", 204 lbs.
Phoenix is loaded in the backcourt, so expect them to look to add a frontcourt player. Tatum is extremely polished offensively, showcasing a reliable jump shot (especially from mid-range) and wide array of finishes around the rim. He isn't the quickest player in the world, but he knows how to get his shots off by using his size and length.
4) Dallas Mavericks - Markelle Fultz, Fr., PG, Washington Huskies - 6'5", 186 lbs.
If Fultz somehow fell to No. 4, the Mavs would be ecstatic. A true combo guard, Fultz is perhaps the most pure scorer in this class. His jumper is inconsistent, but it's nearly impossible to keep him out of paint - and when he gets to the rim, you won't be able to keep him from scoring or from getting to the foul line. He is also averaging 6.3 assists and 6.2 rebounds along with 22 points per game, showing how dominant he is in all phases of the game.
5) Minnesota Timberwolves - Lauri Markkanen, PF, Fr., Arizona Wildcats - 7'0", 225 lbs.
The Finland-native wanted to play at Arizona instead of entering the 2016 draft, and it could end up benefitting him greatly. He's already polished offensively with a reliable three-point jumper, which would make him a perfect fit as a stretch four in Minnesota next to Karl-Anthony Towns.
6) Miami Heat - Malik Monk, PG/SG, Fr., Kentucky Wildcats - 6'4", 185 lbs.
Monk is that rare prospect who can win both a three-point shootout and a slam dunk contest - and showcased all his skills when he dropped 47 points on North Carolina. He needs to bulk up, but he's a smooth athlete. Not the quickest, but is fast and knows how to get past his defender and create his own shot. Miami needs playmakers as they rebuild, and Monk could step in and be the team's featured offensive threat.
7) New Orleans Pelicans - De'Aaron Fox, Fr., PG, Kentucky Wildcats - 6'4", 181 lbs.
Fox has the size (6'4") and athleticism that NBA teams love, along with having the scoring ability to take over a game. That being said, he is also a pass-first point guard that would rather get his teammates involved. He's a bit like former Kentucky point guard John Wall in that sense - dangerous scorer, but he's most dangerous with his passing ability. The Pelicans need to give Anthony Davis any kind of help, and Fox has all the makings of a future star.
Smith is an elite athlete and lightning quick. Couple that with very good ball handling, and Smith can get to where ever he wants on the court. He can play a little reckless at times and doesn't have the most reliable jumper, but all of the physical tools of a star are there.
Drafting two point guards in the top 10 may seem strange for Philly, but both Smith and Ball can play - and defend - either guard position. Plus, they desperately need to add backcourt depth.
9) Denver Nuggets - Jonathan Isaac, SF, Fr., Florida State Seminoles - 6'11", 210 lbs.
Long and lanky, Issac obviously needs to add weight to his skinny frame, but he has all the ability in the world. His length and athleticism make him a very capable defender on the perimeter, and allow him to get to the rim with ease. And with his three-point range, Isaac can be a matchup nightmare at small forward or as a stretch four.
10) Portland Trail Blazers - OG Anunoby, SF, So., Indiana Hoosiers - 6'8", 215 lbs.
Anunoby is the kind of athletic, versatile prospect NBA teams love - and is just starting to scratch the surface of his potential. He is a dynamite defender and a very good rebounder, and while he's still a work in progress offensively, he has the potential to be a very good small ball four.
11) Orlando Magic - Frank Ntilikina, PG, Strasbourg (France) - 6'5", 170 lbs.
Ntilikina could be the best international guard prospect we've ever seen. Along with his elite size and seven-foot wingspan, he is a very good athlete that is polished in almost all phases of the game. He is a great passer with gifted vision, but his jumper does need some work - the only part of his game that is a serious flaw.
12) Detroit Pistons - Ivan Rabb, PF, So., Cal Golden Bears - 6'10", 215 lbs.
Rabb still needs to bulk up, but he's the prototype stretch four at the NBA level. He has excellent touch around the rim and on his mid-range jumper, shooting 55.2 percent this season while grabbing 9.2 rebounds per game. However, Rabb's biggest problem is his tendency to fade out of games offensively from time to time because of his passiveness.
13) Washington Wizards - Harry Giles, Fr., PF, Duke Blue Devils - 6'11", 225 lbs.
At this point, we still don't know what to make of Giles. He was the top-ranked recruit in the class, but has already torn both ACLs in high school and had three knee surgeries. He returned to the court last week for the first time in 14 months, so while he showed all the skill of a franchise player in high school, we don't know if he can still play at that level. For a team like Washington that needs to keep John Wall happy, they could be the ones to gamble on Giles.
14) Chicago Bulls - Edrice Adebayo, PF, Fr., Kentucky Wildcats - 6'10", 260 lbs.
Simply put, Adebayo is an athletic beast. He's an extremely strong player who loves getting physical on the block on both ends of the court. Adebayo is still developing post moves, but his athleticism is his main calling card right now. He's the perfect big man for an up-tempo NBA team.
Bridges already has the combination of size, strength and quickness that has NBA scouts drooling about his potential. A freakish athlete, Bridges also has smooth jumper, making him virtually unguardable on the offensive end. He needs to continue to improve defensively, but Chicago needs a young offensive spark. Bridges provides great value in the middle of the first round.
16) Milwaukee Bucks - Terrance Ferguson, SG, Adelaide (Australia) - 6'7", 186 lbs.
Ferguson opted to play in Australia instead of going to Arizona, and he has already carved out a niche role as a three-point shooter. Milwaukee needs shooing in the worst way, making this a perfect fit.
17) Indiana Pacers - Marques Bolden, Fr. C, Duke Blue Devils - 6'11", 250 lbs.
A big, physical, polished player the best true center in this year's class thanks to his soft hands, quick feet and reliable post game. The Pacers would love if Bridges was still on the board, but with Myles Turner's ability to play power forward, they could turn to the athletic Bolden to form a formidable frontcourt duo with Turner.
18) Atlanta Hawks - Tyler Lydon, SF/PF, So., Syracuse Orange - 6'9", 205 lbs.
Lydon will be a stretch four at the next level (41.3 percent from three), and that has been his calling card in college. Scouts want to see him add strength and become more consistent, but he is a first-round talent.
19) New York Knicks - Rodions Kurucs, SF, Barcelona (Spain) - 6'8", 190 lbs.
He needs to fill out, like most 18 year olds, but Kurucs has good ball-handling ability and is a knockdown shooter that can create shots for himself.
20) Charlotte Hornets - Thomas Bryant, So., C, Indiana Hoosiers - 6'10", 241 lbs.
Bryant likely would've been a first-round pick in the 2016 draft had he decided to leave Indiana after his freshman season, but smartly opted to go back to school and work on his game. A surprising athlete, Bryant is already polished in the post and a very good rebounder - and has shown the ability to knock down the three-point shot with regularity. Bryant needs to be more consistent, but when he's at the top of his game, he can be unstoppable.
21) Utah Jazz - Jonathan Jeanne, PF/C, Le Mans (France) - 7'2", 195 lbs.
Jeanne needs to add strength more than anyone else in this draft and may be a draft-and-stash prospect because of it, but his potential is immense. Picture him as Rudy Gobert who can handle the ball and has a three-point jumper (something Utah fans would love). He's still learning the game, particularly defensively, but the potential is obvious.
Yes, Allen's tripping incidents are certainly a cause for concern. However, NBA teams have said they aren't worried about that - they're concerned with what Allen can do on the court. When healthy, Allen is arguably the best scorer in college basketball. A very good shooter, he has also displayed the quickness, strength and athleticism needed to get to the rim and finish. He is a questionable defender and shaky ball-handler at his point in his career, but he can put the ball in the basket with the best of them. Brooklyn needs players who can contribute right away, and Allen fits the bill.
Blossomgame's NBA stock rocketed up during his breakout year last season, during which he emerged as perhaps the best stretch four in college basketball. Already an excellent defender, he displayed an improved shooting touch (44.6 percent from three) and quickness to attack the basket at a high rate from the perimeter. He is already proving to be more than a one-year wonder, but his three-point shooting has plummeted. Still, he has plenty of potential.
24) Oklahoma City Thunder - Dwayne Bacon, SF, So., Florida State Seminoles - 6'5", 202 lbs.
Bacon is a high-upside player who nearly entered the 2016 draft before returning to school. He's supremely athletic and is great at finishing around the rim (with plenty of spectacular slams from time to time), but also has good ball-handing ability and a reliable three-point shot. He just has to become more consistent and aggressive.
Hartenstein has excellent physical tools and athleticism, allowing him to play power forward instead of center, but he still struggles to put it all together at times. He can play with his back to the basket, shoot from the perimeter, create his own offense and attack the basket off the bounce - yet is very inconsistent, often makes bad decisions and is a bit of a ball hog. The potential is there, but he needs a lot of polishing.
26) Houston Rockets - Edmond Sumner, PG/SG, So., Xavier Musketeers - 6'6", 170 lbs.
Sumner is the kind of versatile combo guard who excels in transition, making him an ideal fit for Mike D'Antoni's offensive system. He is an inconsistent three-point shooter, but his quickness at his size make him an excellent slasher. He is also adept at finding teammates, averaging 4.5 assists per game.
27) Toronto Raptors - Alec Peters, PF, Sr., Valparaiso Crusaders - 6'9", 225 lbs.
Toronto is still looking for a stretch four, and Peters' production at Valpo makes him the lead candidate to fill that role at this point in the draft. He has averaged at least two three-pointers per game in each of the last three years and has become a double-double machine, averaging 26.4 points and 10.0 rebounds per game this year. Peters has also produced against great competition, putting up averages of 24.7 points and 6.7 rebounds in Valpo's three games so far against ranked teams (Oregon, Rhode Island, Kentucky).
28) Cleveland Cavaliers - Monte Morris, PG, Sr. Iowa State Cyclones - 6'3", 175 lbs.
Morris isn't the kind of player who will blow you away with anything he does, but he doesn't have any weaknesses in his game. He's excellent at controlling the pace of play and has incredible vision and passing ability. He should be a reliable backup point guard at the NBA level, which the Cavs are searching for.
29) San Antonio Spurs - Jawun Evans, PG, So. Oklahoma State Cowboys - 6'1", 185 lbs.
As Tony Parker's career winds down, the Spurs really need to add backcourt depth. Enter Evans, who has quietly been as good as any point guard in the country. He is averaging 20.2 points, 4.6 assists and 2.5 steals in just 25.9 minutes per game, showcasing an incredible amount of production and efficiency (he's shooting 48.2 percent from the field, including 52.6 percent from three-point range). His 6-foot-4 wingspan and all-around production signal that he's going to be an impactful NBA player right away.
Beachem is a pure shooter offensively, and looks like he could develop into the prototypical 3-and-D guy in the NBA.Back to the NBA Newsfeed
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