2018 NBA MOCK DRAFT
1) Phoenix Suns- DeAndre Ayton Fr. 7’0 260 C Arizona Wildcats:
It appears that the writing is on the wall for this one. Initially thought to be a two-horse race between Ayton and Doncic, DeAndre Ayton has emerged as the clear favorite to be selected with the #1 overall pick in the 2018 NBA Draft.
2) Sacramento Kings- Marvin Bagley III Fr. 6’11 235 PF Duke:
This is a recent switch. I am not very high on Bagley as I’m not sure what he brings to the table defensively. I didn’t think that the Kings would mess this up and pass on Doncic, but the closer we get to draft night, that appears to be what is happening.
3) Atlanta Hawks- Trae Young Fr. 6’2 180 PG Oklahoma:
Complete gut call here. The Hawks like him. Their GM and management have the Warriors pedigree. The rumor is that they would only take him if they can either move down, or move up. I’m going to go off board and say they take him no matter what.
4) Memphis Grizzlies- Luka Doncic Intl. 6’8 225 Slovenia:
I’ve been surprised by NBA Drafts before, so I guess we should have seen this coming. Luka Doncic has such a commanding feel for the game at such a young age. The Grizzlies could absolutely use some primary initiators on offense, that being said, they are HEAVILY linked into trade rumors, so hang on to your seats. I think Luka Doncic is selected here, but by what team is anyone’s guess.
5) Dallas Mavericks- Mohamed Bamba Fr. 7’0 220 C Texas:
Mohammed Bamba has as much upside as any player in the entire 2018 NBA draft. With his athleticism and length, he is going to be a fascinating prospect to watch over the next few years. If he can develop a more well-rounded offensive game, especially a shot from the outside, he could be a terror to deal with.
6) Orlando Magic- Shai-Gilgeous Alexander Fr. 6’6 190 PG Kentucky:
Alexander is a prospect whose draft stock continues to rise like crazy. Many have him in the Top 10 at this point, I don’t believe I’ve seen him mocked this high. The Magic need PG help, and they know it. Reportedly, they are looking at either Trae Young and Collin Sexton. We know that in the past they have prioritized length, so I think they marry their needs and wants here and take SGA.
7) Chicago Bulls- Michael Porter Jr. Fr. 6’10 SF Missouri:
Once thought to be the top player in this 2018 draft class, Michael Porter sees his draft stock slide due to his back injury he sustained in 2017. MPJ seems to have recovered, but many of his classmates have passed him. That being said, his draft stock ranges anywhere from the 2nd pick to the teens. I feel like the Bulls are a good fit, and they select him here.
8) Cleveland Cavaliers- Jaren Jackson Jr. Fr. 6’11 240 C Michigan State:
Lebron is leaving Cleveland this off-season, he knows it, and I think Cleveland knows it. The Cavaliers should clearly draft the Best Player Available in order to rebuild this franchise. They get extremely fortunate as Triple J slides father than most imagine, and the Cavs get the new face of their franchise.
9) New York Knicks- Kevin Knox Fr. 6’9 215 PF Kentucky:
The Knicks are still trying to find their way. They are a rudderless franchise at the moment, so they need to keep taking their hacks on the highest upside players that they can. Kevin Knox has been FLYING up draft boards as of late with incredibly impressive workouts, and I think the Knicks covet his skill set.
10) Philadelphia 76ers- Mikal Bridges Jr. 6’7 210 SF Villanova:
There are not many pairings in this draft class that I am personally rooting for more so than for Mikal Bridges to be selected by the 76ers. I view Bridges as a potential ALL-NBA level type of defender who can give wings fits with his length and athleticism. Few players have progressed over the course of the last two seasons as much as Bridges. His 3-point shot is legitimate and he is a perfect fit in the modern NBA.
11) Charlotte Bobcats- Collin Sexton Fr. 6’3 190 PG Alabama:
I’m a bit torn with this projection, I have to admit. We still have Wendell Carter Jr. on the board, but I really think the Bobcats are going to address their PG of the future, and with Collin Sexton still on the board, I think they take a shot on him, he has the type of tenacity that MJ would be attracted to.
12) Los Angeles Clippers- Wendell Carter Jr. Fr. PF/C 6’10 260 Duke:
The Clippers desperately need an answer at the Point Guard position, but with the ‘Big 3’ prospects already off the board, they look for the best players available here. The Clips end the slide for Wendell Carter Jr. with the 12th overall selection.
13) Los Angeles Clippers- Lonnie Walker IV Fr. 6’4 200 SG Miami (FL):
My thoughts here are that the Clippers want to add some shooting to their arsenal. Lonnie Walker seems to have done enough to solidify himself a spot in the top 1/2 of the NBA Draft. Pairing Walker and Carter is quite the haul for the Clippers staff.
14) Denver Nuggets- Miles Bridges 6’6 230 So. PF Michigan State:
This is more of a Best Player Available type of pick. Many NBA teams don’t exactly know what to do with Bridges, he is a bit of a “tweener”. Bridges has the NBA body and would be a solid glue guy for the Denver Nuggets.
15) Washington Wizards- Robert Williams 6’9 240 So. PF/C Texas A&M :
Robert Williams is a dynamic talent, but you hear mixed reviews from teams out there. The Wizards could use the front court help, so Williams is the pick here at #15.
16) Phoenix Suns- Zhaire Smith 6’4 200 Fr. SG/SF Texas Tech:
With the Suns going with DeAndre Ayton with the #1 overall pick, the Suns look to address their backcourt here with the 16th selection. Zhaire Smith may very well be the top overall athlete in this draft. His talent and upside with paired with this selection just makes so much sense.
17) Milwaukee Bucks- Jerome Robinson 6’5 190 PG Boston College:
The Bucks are a tough team to project. They normally like super athletes with length. Jerome Robinson is one of my guys and teams have gotten HOT on him late. Don’t be surprised to see him selected with the 17th overall selection.
18) San Antonio Spurs- Donte DiVincenzo 6’5 200 PG/SG Villanova:
The Spurs have taken backcourt prospects in the past two drafts in Dejounte Murray and Derrick White, but I don’t think that would preclude them from taking a player with the talents of Donte DiVincenzo. He is instant offense, and reportedly had a tremendous workout with the Spurs.
19) Atlanta Hawks- Troy Brown Jr. Fr. 6’6 210 SG Oregon:
The Hawks are yet another team with multiple picks in the 1st round. After selecting Trae Young. with the 3rd pick, the Hawks are looking for a prospect who can handle the defensive end of the floor. Troy Brown would represent a good value pick here with the Atlanta Hawks.
20) Minnesota Timberwolves- Khyri Thomas Sr. 6’3 210 PG Creighton:
The Timberwolves and Coach Tibbs love players with a defensive mindset, and Khyri Thomas would be such an excellent fit with his on ball defense and his ability to help initiate the offense. This feels like a match made in heaven.
21) Utah Jazz- Kevin Huerter Fr. 6’6 195 SG/SF Maryland:
There is a rumor circulating around league circles that Kevin Huerter has been given a “promise” by a team in the 1st round that he will be their selection. Reading the tea leaves, some have connected the dots to the Utah Jazz. It makes sense, the Jazz are looking for some shooting to compliment 2017 1st round pick Donovan Mitchell. Huerter may just very well be the top shooter in the entire 2018 NBA Draft.
22) Chicago Bulls- Chandler Hutchison Sr. 6’7 195 SF Boise State:
Chandler Hutchison is another one of the prospects that have an ‘alleged’ promise from a team in the 20s. My hunch is that team is the Chicago Bulls. The Bulls seem to have an affinity for more veteran prospects, and those with defensive versatility. Hutchison is a prospect that just continued to improve throughout his career, and has made himself into a 1st rounder.
23) Indiana Pacers- Josh Okogie So. 6’4 210 SG Georgia Tech:
Not many prospects have helped themselves throughout the draft process more so than Josh Okogie. Okogie has demonstrated outstanding athleticism and shows the type of tenacity on the defensive end that has talent scouts salivating. He has some work to do on the offensive end, but at this point in the draft, the risk is worth the reward.
24) Portland Trailblazers- Jacob Evans Jr. 6’5 200 SF Cincinnati:
There is some security in drafting a prospect like Jacob Evans, you know exactly what you are getting. Evans is your typical ‘3 and D’ type of prospect who can shoot from the outside, while being switchable and able to match up with wings. The value here at pick #24 is just too much to pass up if you’re the Portland Trailblazers front office.
25) Los Angeles Lakers- Mitchell Robinson Fr. 6’11 215 C USA:
The Lakers have been connected to Mitchell Robinson throughout the draft process, so his projection here at the 25th pick should come as no surprise. There is no questioning his athleticism and how high his ceiling could be, but the Lakers will have a lot of work to do to get him to be more fundamental and to work on the nuances that make or break a prospect.
26) Philadelphia 76ers- Dzanan Musa Intl. 6’9 195 SF Bosnia & Herz:
This is another projection that makes just too much sense. If Dzanan Musa slides to the 26th pick, I imagine the 76ers brass would be thrilled. He is truly offensively gifted, and has the talent to develop into a primary initiator. The Sixers may be looking for a player that can stay overseas for a year or two and develop, and Dzanan Musa could be the perfect fit.
27) Boston Celtics: Keita Bates-Diop Sr. 6’8 225 SF Ohio State:
This projection seems to be on brand for the Celtics as of late. They have a proclivity for drafting wing players who are big bodied, and project to have defensively versatility, who they feel they can develop offensively. This summary describes Keita Bates-Diop perfectly. He has a nice touch, but his real gift is being able to defend multiple positions.
28) Golden State Warriors: Elie Okobo Intl. 6’2 190 France:
This is just what the defending NBA Champions need–MORE FIRE POWER! Okobo became famous when people began to see how gifted he was on the offensive end of the floor. Being drafted by a team like the Warriors will allow for him to be eased into the league.
29) Brooklyn Nets: Aaron Holiday Jr. 6’0 190 PG UCLA:
Holiday is a confusing prospect on some level. He plays the PG position, but seems to be more of a scorer than he is a floor general. He does not possess plus athleticism, so I can see an outcome where he struggles against quicker, longer athletes. He likely projects as a backup PG who can run your second unit.
30) Atlanta Hawks: Melvin Frazier 6’6 200 SG/SF Tulane:
The Hawks continue to change their look of the team. They are looking for players who can fill it up, and they find one here with the last pick in the 1st round in Melvin Frazier.