27inarow Official 2014 NBA Mock Draft
With the NBA Draft on Thursday and all of the workouts complete, here is the official 27inarow mock draft. NOTE: Trades are very unpredictable and can happen at any point, therefore, I will not factor trades into this mock draft.
1. Cleveland Cavaliers-Jabari Parker-SF-Duke
Before the injury to Joel Embiid, many believed he would be the first pick taken by the Cavs. With Embiid’s health a major concern, the Cavs will choose between Jabari Parker and Andrew Wiggins, a choice many would love to have. I feel Parker is a much more polished player and far more ready for the NBA. He may not have a high of a ceiling as Wiggins, but players do not always reach full potential. Parker goes first.
2. Milwaukee Bucks-Andrew Wiggins-SF-Kansas
Wiggins is an easy pick here. Wiggins and Parker can easily be switched and I see both having great careers. I would say that Wiggins has the higher ceiling, and should he reach that ceiling, the Bucks have that dynamic and exciting player that they have been looking for since Michael Redd. Wiggins will fill the seats and bring hope back to a struggling franchise.
3. Philadelphia 76ers-Dante Exum-PG-Australia
Absolutely love this guy. Exum, in my opinion, will be the best player in this draft class when all is set and done. If the Sixers decide to pair up Exum with Michael Carter-Williams, it will be one of the scariest young backcourts in the league. Pair those two with whoever will be drafted with the 10th pick that is owned by the Sixers and a returning Nerlens Noel, and the Sixers have a very, very bright future.
4. Orlando Magic-Joel Embiid-C-Kansas
Without injuries, Embiid likely goes first. Whichever team takes Embiid is taking a big risk with such a raw talent and major injury concerns. Should be pan out, he could be dominant, but I am not a fan of taking him this high. Orlando could see this as a blessing, but he I just do no see him becoming what some scouts think he can become. Embiid falls to 4th, but this is a bust prospect waiting to happen.
5. Utah Jazz-Noah Vonleh-PF-Indiana
Utah could really solidify their frontcourt by drafting Vonleh here and pair him alongside Derrick Favors, a great defensive player. I love Vonleh’s offensive game and could see him flourishing right away and working well with second-year point guard Trey Burke. Love this pick for Utah.
6. Boston Celtics-Julius Randle-PF-Kentucky
This is a pick I could see being traded, even packaged with Rajon Rondo, in which case they would not draft Randle. If they do decide to keep Rondo and stay here in the draft, Randle is a solid pick who could work well with Rondo and budding star Kelly Olynyk. Rnadle would start instantly and be the keystone of the frontcourt for the Celts.
7. Los Angeles Lakers-Marcus Smart-PG-Oklahoma State
Learning under Kobe will be exactly what an often hot-headed Smart needs coming to LA. Smart can play either PG or SG, which could be important when Kobe needs rest coming back from injury yet again. I do not think he will be able to bully his way to the basket like in college, but in the end, I see Smart being a solid player and a nice pick for the Lakers.
8. Sacramento Kings-Aaron Gordon-PF-Arizona
Gordon is one of the most athletic players in this draft and will improve the Kings defense immensely. Playing alongside DeMarcus Cousins and Jason Thompson will help Gordon grow quickly, something he will need to do if the Kings are to compete right away. Gordon is a bit of a project offensively, so it remains to be seen how great of a pick this will be.
9. Charlotte Hornets-Doug McDermott-SF-Creighton
The Hornets(formally Bobcats) organization love to draft players who stuck around in college for a couple of years and this year is no different. McDermott brings some instant offense to Charlotte and should contribute immediately. The offensive skill is there, but it will be interesting to see how the rest of his game develops.
10. Philadelphia 76ers-Nik Stauskas-SG-Michigan
The second pick already for the Sixers, and another elite offensive player comes off the board. Stauskas is likely the best shooter in this draft and is a player that would have to be defended closely at all times. I would love this pick for the Sixers, a team that needs offense after struggling big time in that department last year.
11. Denver Nuggets-Gary Harris-SG-Michigan State
Harris is a player with tons of upside and can score in multiple forms. One of the more versatile players in the draft. Harris would be added to a backcourt with Ty Lawson and would have plenty of chances to shoot the ball with Lawson’s distributing ability. A good offense gets even better.
12. Orlando Magic-Dario Saric-PF-Croatia
Orlando looks to add on to Embiid here and take Saric to complete their frontcourt of the future. Saric has been in and out of the draft the past couple of years, and reports indicate he is signing a deal with a Turkish team that would not allow him to play in the NBA for two years, so this may be a draft and stash situation that will have to be monitored.
13. Minnesota Timberwolves-Rodney Hood-SF-Duke
With Kevin Love likely departing this offseason, Minnesota will have to draft scoring options to replace him. Hood is a very versatile scorer who can stroke it from deep or take it in on the big men. It will be interesting to see what the Timberwolves plans are with Love, and those plans will likely impact who they draft here.
14. Phoenix Suns-Kyle Anderson-SF-UCLA
With Channing Frye and P.J. Tucker departing into free agency, the Suns will need a forward, and Anderson can play that position along with pretty much any other position on the court. Anderson can distribute from the forward position, which will be key for the Suns since they have two score-first guards in Goran Dragic and Eric Bledsoe. This could turn out to be the best pick of the draft.
15. Atlanta Hawks-Zach LaVine-SG-UCLA
Atlanta is a team full of shooters and a great center in Al Horford, but lack some pure athletic talent. Enter Zach LaVine. LaVine is also a good shooter, but likely has the highest vertical jump in this draft and is an absolute athletic freak. This is a bit of a gamble, but LaVine has the tools to be a star.
16. Chicago Bulls-T.J. Warren-SF-NC State
Warren is one of the best scorers in the entire draft, and scoring is just what the Bulls need, seeing as they were the worst offense in the NBA last year. The Bulls are pursuing Carmelo Anthony to fix this problem, but should that fall through, they will need to address the need through the draft, and Warren will be available here.
17. Boston Celtics-James Young-SG-Kentucky
With the frontcourt address earlier by drafting Julius Randle, the Celtics add another Kentucky player by drafting James Young. Boston is not a good three-point shooting team, something that Young could really help with. His athletic ability is often overlooked, but he should pair very well with Rondo in the Celtics backcourt.
18. Phoenix Suns-Elfrid Payton-PG-Louisiana Lafayette
A depth move, Payton will get the chance to learn under Dragic and Bledsoe and provide some valuable minutes off the bench. Payton is unknown to many basketball fans, but he could be a key player for the Suns next year. This is a pick I can also see being traded.
19. Chicago Bulls-Tyler Ennis-PG-Syracuse
Derrick Rose has gone down with injuries the past two seasons, so a young, viable backup is needed. Ennis’ stock has fallen in the past few weeks, but this could end up being a steal for the Bulls. If Rose remains healthy, they will have a great option off the bench as Rose gets back into the swing of things.
20. Toronto Raptors-P.J. Hariston-SG-NBA D-League
The former North Carolina star has done very well for himself in the D-League, well enough to work into the first round of the draft. Hariston is one of the best pure scorers in this draft and could fill the scoring void left by Kyle Lowry, who could leave via free agency this summer.
21. Oklahoma City-Adreian Payne-PF-Michigan State
Payne is exactly the type of player that the Thunder need. Payne is one of the more NBA-ready players of this draft and will provide some instant scoring right off the bench. Would love to watch Payne play along with Ibaka on the court at the same time. Talk about a intimidating frontcourt.
22. Memphis Grizzlies-Shabazz Napier-PG-UConn
This may be a bit high for Napier, but his scoring is something a team who is defensively oriented could use. Napier is a proven winner, as shown with UConn, and can work very well behind or alongside Mike Conley.
23. Utah Jazz-Cleanthony Early-SF-Wichita State
The Jazz solidified their frontcourt earlier in the draft with Vonleh, so they will look to fill a wing spot here. Early is a very good shooter and defender, the type of player the Jazz need and will be a nice asset to a young, up and coming team.
24. Charlotte Hornets-Jordan Clarkson-PG-Missouri
With a backup for Kemba Walker needed, I expect the Hornets to go point guard with their second pick of the first round. Clarkson is a very good defensive player who will provide a nice spark off the bench and give the Hornets exactly what they need, a reliable backup for Walker.
25. Houston Rockets-Glenn Robinson III-SF-Michigan
The Rockets are all in to try and lure LeBron James or Carmelo Anthony to Houston, but should that not happen, they will need to find someone to play SF with Chandler Parsons gone. Robinson has the ability to be an absolute steal this late and could start right away for Houston.
26. Miami Heat-Jusuf Nurkic-C-Bosnia & Herzegovina
The Heat have bigger concerns on their hands than the draft with their stars potentially leaving. Nurkic likely will not drop this far, but if he does, it would be a nice pickup for the Heat, who need help down low. Nurkic has a lot of potential and could bud into a real contributor for Miami.
27. Phoenix Suns-Clint Capela-PF-Switzerland
The Suns third pick of the first round will have them going the international route. Capela has the ability to be a real enforcer down low, and pairing him up with Miles Plumlee could give the Suns a dominant frontcourt.
28. Los Angeles Clippers-Vasilje Micic-PG-Serbia
The Clippers could use a backup for Chris Paul, and Micic has a similar style to CP3. A pass-first PG, Micic would be a project, but has the ability to be a great distributor and a nice option off the bench for Doc Rivers.
29. Oklahoma City Thunder-C.J. Wilcox-SG-Washington
Wilcox is one of the best shooters in the draft and a veteran out of college who can provide a spark off the bench for the Thunder right away. Even on a team with Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook, you can never have too many scoring options.
30. San Antonio Spurs-Mitch McGary-C-Michigan
The champion Spurs always seem to make the right decisions, and McGary is a great value pick here. Coming off a back injury, McGary will have the honor of learning under the wing of Tim Duncan, something that he cannot get elsewhere. McGary could be a solid option off the bench and a potential Duncan replacement.