The NBA draft is officially one week away, with the future of the league potentially about to be transformed on June 21st.
With a ton of top-end talent, and the possibility for a flurry of draft-night trades in the works, it’s shaping up to be an exciting — and unpredictable — event.
Here’s what you can expect to see this time next week.
DeAndre Ayton, C, Arizona
Ayton to the Suns is as close to a lock as we have in this draft. He reportedly wowed Suns staffers at his private workout in Phoenix — so much so that afterwards he said he wasn’t going to work out for any other teams. He’s a rare physical specimen — a seven-footer with a rumoured 44-inch vertical leap — with the quickness and versatility to be a dominant low-post presence, even if his rim protection has come under question. Joining Devin Booker and Josh Jackson would give Phoenix a promising young core that other rebuilding clubs could only dream of having.
Jaren Jackson Jr., C, Michigan State
Now here’s where things get interesting. With teenage EuroLeague phenom Luka Doncic on the board, on paper this should be a relatively easy decision for Sacramento. But how are we supposed to expect the Kings front office to make the right decision? The club is reportedly entertaining offers to trade down and it’s been said that they aren’t as high on Doncic as most, uncertain of how his game will translate to the NBA. It’s either a smokescreen, or a classic case of overthinking. If they keep the pick and pass on a once-in-a-generation prospect like Doncic, then Jackson Jr. is a mighty fine alternative. The 19 year-old projects to be a prototypical modern day two-way centre with more upside than almost anyone in the draft.
Luka Doncic, G, Slovenia
Atlanta hit the reset button last season and sometimes you have to get lucky when you’re starting from scratch. If Doncic falls to the Hawks it gives them a backcourt star to build around and a foundational piece to usher in the next era of Atlanta basketball.
Marvin Bagley III, PF/C, Duke
Bagley put up big numbers in college but saw his draft stock drop slightly during the NCAA season — not a knock as much as a means to point out that he was pegged as a No. 1 pick coming out of …read more