Quick disclaimer: I have no idea about any European prospects in this (or any other) year’s draft, so that’s the reason guys like Evan Fournier who are projected in some mock drafts to go in the first round will not show up in this mock.
1. New Orleans – Anthony Davis, PF (Kentucky)
Absolute no-brainer here for New Orleans who just got a big man that it will be able to build around for years to come. Davis has the ability to change games defensively and has improved his offensive game during his season at Kentucky.
2. Charlotte – Thomas Robinson, PF (Kansas)
There are a couple of different ways the Bobcats can go with the No. 2 pick, but Robinson is going bring a lot of energy and rebounding to Charlotte and he’s shown during his career in college that he’s going to be able to produce. Should be a great pick for Charlotte.
3. Washington – Brad Beal, SG (Florida)
Bringing in Beal should be music to John Wall’s ears, giving him a fantastic backcourt mate who can shoot the lights out. After picking up Trevor Ariza and Emeka Okafor earlier in the week, adding Beal into the mix could make the Wizards an interesting team to watch next season.
4. Cleveland – Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, SF (Kentucky)
You aren’t going to find another player in this draft with a higher motor than Michael Kidd-Gilchrist. MKG could easily be the No. 2 pick in this draft and it would make sense. He’s a small forward who is going to do just about everything for you. Great pick for Cleveland and will be a nice complement to Kyrie Irving.
5. Sacramento – Harrison Barnes, SF (North Carolina)
Barnes should be better in the NBA than he was at North Carolina. With this pick, he’ll give the Kings a guy on the wing with a lot of length who can knock down perimeter jumpers. The biggest knock against Barnes is that he can’t create his own shot very well, but he should be a very good fit in Sacramento alongside of Tyreke Evans.
6. Portland – Damian Lillard, PG (Weber State)
Lillard emerged as the top point guard in the draft after a solid senior season at Weber State. Portland could opt to take a big man here, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see the Blazers take a point guard here and wait and see who is available between Andre Drummond, Meyers Leonard and Tyler Zeller at No. 11.
7. Golden State – Dion Waiters, SG (Syracuse)
He’s being compared to Dwyane Wade last season and Waiters is going to give whatever team takes him a tough combo guard who has the potential to be a great scorer at the next level. He can penetrate well, and is able to shoot it off the dribble.
8. Toronto – Jeremy Lamb, SG (Connecticut)
The Raptors will likely choose between Lamb and Austin Rivers with this one. Rivers can score in bunches and has the potential to become a very solid player in the NBA. His length will also help him a lot and he’ll be able to run the floor really well.
9. Detroit – John Henson, PF (North Carolina)
Henson gives the Pistons a long, athletic big man to pair up with Greg Monroe in the frontcourt. The UNC product is an explosive shot blocker and is able to make a big difference on the defensive end of the floor and can score well around the basket. His small frame is a bit of a concern at the next level.
10. New Orleans – Austin Rivers, SG (Duke)
Rivers is a very versatile scorer who can play both guard positions, and should be a nice fit in New Orleans with Eric Gordon and Anthony Davis. He creates off the dribble about as well as any other player in this draft.
11. Portland – Andre Drummond, C (Connecticut)
Drummond could easily go at No. 6 in the draft, but a lot of people have questioned his motor and how good he’ll be in the NBA, but the Blazers will get a big man with a ton of potential with this pick if Drummond drops to the 11th pick.
12. Milwaukee – Meyers Leonard, C (Illinois)
The Bucks need some help in the frontcourt and Leonard is an interesting prospect. At 7-feet, the Illinois product is a true center, but Leonard also possesses some freakish athletic ability for a big man that is moving him up draft boards quickly. Wouldn’t be surprised if he turns into an All Star in the league.
13. Phoenix – Kendall Marshall, PG (North Carolina)
There wasn’t a point guard in America that I enjoyed watching more than Marshall. Marshall is a pass-first point guard that you really don’t see as much of anymore in the NBA, and is there a better person for him to learn under in his first couple of seasons in the NBA than Steve Nash? These two are cut from the same cloth and getting to learn under Nash could be great for his development.
14. Houston – Tyler Zeller, C (North Carolina)
Any team that drafts Tyler Zeller knows what they’re getting. He’s a true center who showed while at North Carolina that he is able to run the floor exceptionally well for a big man and could fit in with what the Rockets will try to do.
15. Philadelphia – Jared Sullinger, PF (Ohio State)
Sullinger is one of the examples of a person who should have left after his freshman season. Teams are going to have questions about his back and the problems that he’s had with staying healthy during his time in Columbus, but the reward still beats out the risk in this case. Sullinger can come in and be a good power forward for the Sixers to have when Elton Brand is gone.
16. Houston – Perry Jones III, PF (Baylor)
PJ3 is a versatile forward who will be able to do a little bit of everything for Houston at the small and power forward positions. Although he’s received some criticisms for being inconsistent and ineffective for stretches, Jones is extremely talented and has a ton of athleticism.
17. Dallas – Terrence Jones, PF/SF (Kentucky)
He’s a very skilled player, who (like Perry Jones) is going to be able to play both forward positions at the next level. Probably a better fit as a small forward in the league, would fit in with the Mavericks in the same kind of way that Shawn Marion does. Can slash, knock down midrange jumper (but he does need to work on it) and can rebound the ball, especially on the offensive end.
18. Houston – Terrence Ross, SG (Washington)
The Rockets could likely trade this pick away if reports are true about trying to get Dwight Howard, but taking Ross would make sense. It would give Houston the chance to move Kevin Martin’s contract somewhere else, while bringing in a player with a similar skill set.
19. Orlando – Arnett Moultrie, PF (Mississippi State)
Orlando is likely going to need a big man, assuming a certain all-pro big man leaves town, so with this pick they’re going to go big. Best available at this point will probably be Moultrie, Royce White or Fab Melo if they actually want a true center. Moultrie’s technically a power forward, but he’s got the size and skills to be a center in the NBA. Rebounds extremely well, can score it a little bit and is versatile enough to score from the perimeter as well.
20. Denver – Royce White, PF (Iowa State)
White might be the most undervalued prospect who will go in the first round. A lot of teams have been overlooking him because of his problems with anxiety, but you aren’t going to find a lot of guys with his size (6-foot-8, 261 pounds) who can do as much as him. He has lottery-level talent and is able to pass the ball as well as — maybe better than — any other big man in this year’s draft class.
21. Boston – Moe Harkless, SF (St. John’s)
Harkless had a very solid freshman season under Steve Lavin at St. John’s, and is another prospect who could end up being a steal for Boston or any other team that takes him in the 15-25 range. He’s long and athletic and does a nice job of getting to the basket. If he can find consistency with his perimeter game, he could be a great high-value pick at this point in the first round.
22. Boston – Fab Melo, C (Syracuse)
Melo had some problems with academics in his time at Syracuse, but the Celtics need a guy who can make an impact down low, not pass a math test. His offensive game is still raw, but it’s gotten better and he can make an impact on the defensive end of the floor. He can grow into Boston’s starting center for a long time.
23. Atlanta – Andrew Nicholson, PF (St. Bonaventure)
Nicholson is a great rebounder and underrated scorer, mostly because not a lot of people got to watch him at St. Bonaventure. He should be able to come in and make an immediate impact in Atlanta as a pure post player on a team that doesn’t really have anybody like that at the power forward position.
24. Cleveland – Will Barton, SG (Memphis)
Barton will bring the Cavaliers another good wing player to put with Anthony Parker and MKG. Having players ahead of him will allow him to take some time and develop more instead of having to come in and have an immediate impact. Needs to be a little bit more aggressive going to the basket and cut down on his poor decisions in order to have success at the next level.
25. Memphis – Marquis Teague, PG (Kentucky)
Teague could fit in nicely and bring point guard depth to Memphis, backing up Mike Conley Jr. Really showed a lot of improvement as a game manager toward the second half of last season, and should only continue to get better at that with time in the NBA. He’s best when he can break down a defense and penetrate, not an NBA-level shooter.
26. Indiana – Jeffery Taylor, SF (Vanderbilt)
Taylor proved at the NBA draft combine that he’s a great athlete. He’s gotten better as a perimeter shooter, but isn’t very good at taking his defenders off the dribble. He was an underrated defender last season, and is able to guard shooting guards as well as small forwards.
27. Miami – Draymond Green,PF (Michigan State)
Draymond Green is a winner. He does what he needs to help the team win and will fit into the role that Udonis Haslem has filled so well for Miami in the past. He’s more skilled than a lot of people give him credit for and can do a little bit of everything. Very nice value pick at the end of the first round, absolute steal if he falls to the second round.
28. Oklahoma City – Doron Lamb, SG (Kentucky)
With its young core, Oklahoma City doesn’t really need a ton in this draft, but Lamb will bring the Thunder a solid perimeter shooter who has the ability to run the point a little too.
29. Chicago – John Jenkins, SG (Vanderbilt)
Possibly the best shooter in this year’s draft class, Jenkins will bring just that to Chicago as the Bulls need a consistent three-point shooter to come off the bench.
30. Golden State – Kevin Jones, PF (West Virginia)
Would probably take Quincy Miller from Baylor under most circumstances with this pick, but with the reports that KJ has a first-round guarantee from a team, the Warriors seem like the most logical landing spot for Jones. You know what you’re going to get with Jones. He’s not a great athlete, but knows how to get the job done. Can rebound with the best of them. He’s a lot like Draymond Green.
31. Charlotte – Tony Wroten, PG (Washington)
32. Washington – Evan Fournier, SG (France)
33. Cleveland – Festus Ezeli, C (Vanderbilt)
34. Cleveland – Tyshawn Taylor, PG (Kansas)
35. Golden State – Quincy Miller, SF (Baylor)
36. Sacramento – Jared Cunningham, SG (Oregon State)
37. Toronto – Kevin Murphy, SF (Tennessee Tech)
38. Denver – Kim English, SG (Missouri)
39. Detroit – Miles Plumlee, C (Duke)
40. Portland – Drew Gordon, PF (New Mexico)
41. Portland – Darius Miller, SF (Kentucky)
42. Milwaukee – JaMychal Green, PF (Alabama)
43. Atlanta – Scott Machado, PG (Iona)
44. Detroit – Khris Middleton, SF (Texas A&M)
45. Philadelphia – Kris Joseph, SF (Syracuse)
46. New Orleans – Hollis Thompson, SF (Georgetown)
47. Utah – Robbie Hummel, SF (Purdue)
48. New York – Orland Johnson, SG (UC-Santa Barbara)
49. Orlando – William Buford, SG (Ohio State)
50. Denver – J’Covan Brown, PG (Texas)
51. Boston – Darius Johnson-Odom, SG (Marquette)
52. Golden State – Quincy Acy, SF (Baylor)
53. Los Angeles Clippers – Henry Sims, C (Georgetown)
54. Philadelphia – Kyle O’Quinn, PF (Norfolk State)
55. Dallas – Jae Crowder, SF (Marquette)
56. Toronto – Mike Scott, PF (Virginia)
57. Brooklyn – Cameron Moore, PF (UAB)
58. Minnesota – Marcus Denmon, SG (Missouri)
59. San Antonio – Alex Young, SG (IUPUI)
60. Los Angeles Lakers – Tu Holloway, PG (Xavier)