NBA Lottery Mock, V1, By Bryce Olds (@ItsBrizz)
So, it’s that time of year. Now yes, I should be making an NFL mock and maybe I will, but the Knicks just secured the worst record in the NBA and I’m in an NBA mock mood for now. I will be going through the lottery picks using Tankathon.com and Wheel Decide, I did 10 simulations with Tankathon and 10 spins (sometimes 11, sometimes 0, I’ll explain) on Wheel Decide, and the order I came up with was:
#6: Hawks (from DAL)
#9: Celtics (from MEM)
#14: Celtics (from SAC)
Before I start the mock, what I meant by “sometimes 11, sometimes 0” was after the fourth pick there were teams that were just guaranteed to win that pick due to the odds I got from Tankathon, and I got a couple of ties for some picks and had to do an 11th spin for that pick, but in any event I promise that was as fair as I could make the simulation. I will link the spreadsheet for it in the sources if you feel so strongly about it.
Now, for the mock. With the first pick in the 2019 NBA Draft, the New York Knicks select Zion Williamson, Duke University. I think this is the most obvious selection since maybe D Rose to Chicago. The Knicks and Zion seem almost destined to be together at times and personally, I hope it happens. Zion is the star New York basketball needs, and he is ready to take that spotlight.
With the second pick in the NBA Draft, the Cleveland Cavaliers select R.J. Barrett, Duke University. Before you yell at me telling me all about how Ja Morant is better, let me explain. Yes, Ja Morant is a better player than R.J., but the Cavs drafted Colin Sexton, a Point Guard, last year. The Cavs need R.J. more than they need Morant, and that’s why they’d pass on him here.
With the third pick in the NBA Draft, the Atlanta Hawks select Jarrett Culver, Texas Tech. Again, I know it isn’t Ja Morant, but the Hawks have their guy in Trae Young and they do not need Morant. Having a Culver and Trae backcourt would be VERY dangerous and I think the Hawks know that. Culver has had a tournament run of a lifetime, and this season has averaged 18.6 PPG, 6.4 RPG, 3.7 APG and won Big 12 Player of the Year honors. Picking him over Morant when you need an SG is not a bad idea.
With the fourth pick in the NBA Draft, the Chicago Bulls select Ja Morant, Murray State. Morant is a future star and yes he is the second best player in the draft, but the Bulls in this scenario are the first team other than the Knicks that Morant would make sense for. The Bulls future with this pick is very bright and with the addition of Morant, they’ll be looking to contend in the future.
With the fifth pick in the NBA Draft, the Phoenix Suns select Coby White, North Carolina. White is a great take for the Suns as they need someone to pair next to Devin Booker. White is a fast, exciting point guard that could help the Suns be fun again. A core of White, Booker, and Ayton could maybe bring some fans back into the seats in Phoenix.
With the sixth pick in the NBA Draft, the Atlanta Hawks select Rui Hachimura, Gonzaga University. The Hawks fill out one of their other needs with this pick, adding a core of Trae, Culver, and Rui to their team makes them one of the most exciting young teams in the NBA. Rui had averages of 19.7 PPG, 6.5 RPG, and 1.5 APG this year and won the West Coast Conference Player of the Year. If the Hawks get in this position, expect them to be up at the top of the East for many years to come.
With the seventh pick in the NBA Draft, the New Orleans Pelicans select Jaxson Hayes, University of Texas. Hayes will probably be the Davis replacement for the Pelicans. Granted, he’s not AD and I don’t think he’ll ever be as good as AD, but he is a solid big man and can fill some of the void left by AD’s inevitable exit.
With the eighth pick in the NBA Draft, the Washington Wizards select DeAndre Hunter, University of Virginia. Hunter is a great fit for the Wizards as he is probably a hero already to most Wizards fans. I think keeping Hunter in the DC area would be good for his career and he could be a crucial part to the Wizards rebuild if they select him.
With the ninth pick in the NBA Draft, the Boston Celtics select Nassir Little, North Carolina. Little will be a very big help off the bench for the Celtics (did you get my pun). In all seriousness, Nassir with Rozier, Smart, Morris, and someone else they’re drafting a few picks from now is a strong bench unit, I guess it’s all about keeping Kyrie.
With the 10th pick in the NBA Draft, the Los Angeles Lakers select Cam Reddish, Duke University. Cam is now the last of the Duke big three to go, but he goes to a huge market with the Lakers. I think if he can make his three fall a little more consistently, and keep up his defensive play in the NBA, he’ll fit right in next to LeBron.
With the 11th pick in the NBA Draft, the Minnesota Timberwolves select Nickeil Alexander-Walker, Virginia Tech. Nickeil is a very talented scorer from the SG position, averaging 16.2 PPG on 47% shooting. The Wolves need some help at both guard positions really, and I think Nickeil would be the best one available to them at 11th.
With the 12th pick in the NBA Draft, the Charlotte Hornets select Darius Garland, Vanderbilt University. The Hornets are most likely losing Kemba Walker this offseason, and they’re not really in the market for Kyrie or Dragic, so Garland is the best selection for them. Garland isn’t as good as Kemba, but he is a nice piece to have and it is possible to build around him. I am aware that the Hornets failed to build around Kemba even in the slightest, but I think with Garland they will learn from their mistakes and help build around what they have.
With the 13th pick in the NBA Draft, the Miami Heat select Keldon Johnson, University of Kentucky. Johnson I believe is going to be a very solid NBA player, his size and ability to score plus his tenacious defense will really help whichever team gets him, in this case, the Heat. Johnson averages 13.5 points a game on about 46% shooting, and I feel like that efficiency will go up as his career progresses.
With the 14th pick in the NBA Draft, the Boston Celtics select Bol Bol, University of Oregon. Now yes, Bol is a very risky pick, especially while Fernando is still on the board, but Bol’s upside is very, very big. At 7’2 with a 7’8 wingspan, Bol is definitely going to make some noise in the NBA if he recovers properly, which is why he’s a risk. But hey, you can’t have a great reward without great risk.
With that, my first edition of the lotto mock draft is complete, if you enjoyed what you read, you can find all my other works on my twitter @ItsBrizz.
Random Wheel: https://wheeldecide.com/
Hachimura Stats: https://www.sports-reference.com/cbb/players/rui-hachimura-1.html
Alexander-Walker Stats: https://www.sports-reference.com/cbb/players/nickeil-alexander-walker-1.html