NBA Mock Draft 2017

NBA Mock Draft 2017

Draft

NBA Mock Draft 2017

POINT GUARDS / SHOOTING GUARDS / SMALL FORWARDS / POWER FORWARDS / CENTERS

 

Point Guard / 6-5 / University of Washington / Freshman
23.2 ppg, 5.9 apg

There were NBA scouts who said they felt Fultz would be the No. 1 pick going into the season. And while his play throughout the year wasn’t consistent from start to finish, when at his best he stood out as the most impressive prospect on the college level. He has a game tailor-made for succeeding in the NBA as he makes creating quality shots appear effortless with his change of pace dribbles and quick pull up ability. He also has great efficiency with the vision to create easy looks and the creativity to overcome speed or athleticism mismatches. The two main concerns are the fact that he was on a losing team, and that he wasn’t able to stay healthy for the entire year. But no prospect in this draft is perfect, and Fultz remains on top of most scouts boards as the premiere prospect available.

Twitter: @MarkelleF
Comparison: James Harden
Salary: $5,091,500*
Point Guard / 6-6 / UCLA / Freshman
14.6 ppg, 7.7 apg

If anyone supplants Fultz to be the top pick, it figures to be Ball. Ball clearly doesn’t have the pure scoring ability or polished offensive game of Fultz. But he appears to possess more in the way of a team focus and intangibles. He is clearly missing the ability to score in the mid-range. His three-point shot, as effective as it is, requires space in order to get off due to the slow release he has. He actually has a very accurate deep three-point shot that will translate, but the problem is he really needs to cut down on the unnecessary motion in his shot and revamp the form on it in order to be more effective as a shot creator in the mid-range. Regardless, he has that dominate-a-game-without-scoring a la Jason Kidd that will ensure success at the next level. Whether he can be closer to a Kidd than Ricky Rubio will depend on how effectively he can transform his shooting motion.

Twitter: @ZO2_
Comparison: Jason Kidd
Salary: $4,555,500*
Small Forward / 6-8 / Duke / Freshman
16.9 ppg, 7.3 rpg

No one improved over the final month of the season as much as Tatum. He’s become one of the nation’s most valuable players in the country. He’s put the Blue Devils on his back with clutch plays at the end of close games to lead Duke to their first ever four wins in four nights ACC Tournament title. While not an elite athlete, he’s extremely smooth and has an advanced isolation game to create space for shots. While he doesn’t have the upside of guys like Josh Jackson or Jonathon Isaac, he may end up hearing his name called before them on draft night due to being such a sure thing and exhibiting such an advanced skill set.

Twitter: @jaytatum0
Comparison: Allan Houston
Salary: $4,090,900*
Small Forward / 6-8 / Kansas / Freshman
16.4 ppg, 7.2 rpg

Jackson has been one of the top freshmen in the country and remains very high on scouts lists of top prospects. Bit he has had some off court incidents and while none of them have concerned scouts heavily, if a team is on the fence with him and another player (Tatum for instance) not having a squeaky clean off court image could be a tipping point. Jackson is the far superior athlete and has shown as much heart and passion as anyone. A big NCAA tournament performance could easily launch him back into the Top 3 and even into the top pick discussion once again.

Twitter:
Comparison: Kawhi Leonard
Salary: $3,688,400*
Point Guard / 6-3 / Kentucky / Freshman
16.1 ppg, 4.8 apg

Fox has as much raw talent and potential as any player in this year’s draft. But he has one major Achilles to his game and that is his shooting efficiency. However, when you watch him shoot, it’s easy to conclude that he can become a quality shooter over time. The form on his shot actually looks decent, not requiring a lot of time to get it off.  He’s the quickest player in the draft and will instantly become one of the quickest at the next level. Combine that with above-average size for the position and you have an absolute physical specimen capable of locking down opposing points and getting by opponents virtually at will. Fox had some nagging injuries through the season, but has ended conference play on fire and is quickly climbing up draft boards.

Twitter: @Swipathef0x
Comparison: John Wall
Salary: $3,340,000*
Small Forward / 6-10 / Florida State / Freshman
11.9 ppg, 7.6 rpg

Isaac is one of the more polarizing prospects in this year’s draft. While not the most consistent of performers, he shows a tremendous pull-up jumper for someone with his dimensions. He fits the mold of the long, freaky shooters such as Brandon Ingram, and is one of those players that could become a deadly scorer at the next level. While some scouts absolutely love his potential and wouldn’t hesitate to draft him in the Top 5, he has his share of detractors, questioning his desire, intensity and feel for the game. He has not performed to the level of a guy like Lauri Markkanen, however he shows a lot more natural run-jump athleticism to excel in transition, defend and be more than just an outside marksman.

Twitter: @jisaac_01
Comparison: Rashard Lewis
Salary: $3,033,600*
Point Guard / 6-5 / Strasbourg IG (France) / 1998
7.1 ppg, 2.1 apg

Ntilikina has struggled some for playing time with his French team Strausbourg, but has been efficient and productive when he’s gotten chances. He made a big impression on scouts at the U18 European Championships, an event that took place in Istanbul, and was delayed a few months over safety concerns. Ntilikina completely took the event over, showing the ability to be a go-to scorer late in games, run a team and be a lock-down defender. His seven-foot wingspan adds intrigue as he will likely be a quality two-way player. His lack of playing time will make him tougher for teams to evaluate, but talent-wise he’s in the mix with the elite points in this draft.

Twitter:
Comparison: Dante Exum
Salary: $2,769,300*
Point Guard / 6-2 / North Carolina State / Freshman
18.1 ppg, 6.2 apg

After a strong start to conference play, Smith had a rough end to the season. He had one absolutely sensational game leading NC State to a win over Duke at Cameron Indoor. But for all his heroics, he left scouts wondering about his dedication and desire. Granted he was forced to play out the season with a team going nowhere and a coach that had already been fired. While it’s clear he’s an immensely talented prospect, capable of being one of the dynamic point guards at the next level for years to come, the fears about his focus and dedication could drop him into the mid-lottery range.

Twitter: @Dennis4Smith
Comparison: Baron Davis
Salary: $2,537,000*
Power Forward / 7-0 / Arizona / Freshman
15.6 ppg, 7.1 rpg

After Dirk‘s success, there was a huge run on similar European bigs with shooting ability, however many of the “next Dirks” turned out to be Skitas and Bargnanis. With the success of Porzingis, a player like Markkanen may get over-drafted due to the frenzy to find Zinger 2.0. While he has some of the same pure shooting ability, he’s not nearly as fluid or big as Porzingis. He will likely struggle mightily on defense due to a lack of lateral quickness, and it’s still a bit of a mystery how much his legs will improve strength-wise. To his credit, Markkanen has improved as the season has progressed, leading one of the top teams in the country to a Pac 12 title. He may not be another unicorn, but he should turn into a valuable stretch four in the league.

Comparison: Ryan Anderson
Salary: $2,332,100*
Shooting Guard / 6-3 / Kentucky / Freshman
20.4 ppg, 2.5 rpg

Monk solidified himself as one of the deadliest scorers in all of college basketball. He proved himself all season as the highest scorer in the SEC. His ability to create and make difficult shots late in games has really intrigued scouts. On top of the shooting and scoring ability, he’s one of the bounciest athletes in college. So why is he rated at 10? Despite all of the positives, scouts do have some concerns. At 6-foot-3, he’s undersized for the shooting guard position. He also lacks ideal body strength with a very thin frame. And lastly, he is a bit one-dimensional as he doesn’t attack the rim off the dribble or defend as well as you would like. On the bright side, he is just 19 and scouts are mesmerized by the things that he does well.

Twitter: @AhmadMonk
Comparison: Eric Gordon
Salary: $2,215,400*
Power Forward / 6-9 / Texas A&M / Freshman
11.9 ppg, 8.2 rpg

Williams is the player who, similar to Marquese Chriss last year, essentially came out of nowhere to make a meteoric rise up draft boards. He entered college barely on most recruiting analyst’s Top 50 lists, and put up a very strong season. Williams has a 7-foot-5 wingspan and a raw but very intriguing all-around game. He has the potential to be a rim protector as well as a dominant rebounder. He may take a few years before becoming an NBA contributor, but his upside is among the top prospects overall in college.

Twitter:
Comparison: Jermaine O’Neal
Salary: $2,104,700*
Power Forward / 6-10 / UCLA / Freshman
16.2 ppg, 8.3 rpg

Leaf has been one of the biggest surprises of the college season. He has proven to be a very clutch and cerebral player. His combination of athleticism and polish makes him dominant on the college level in just his freshman season. He could stand to add weight, but he has shown the willingness to battle and toughness to go up against stronger post players. His rebounding and overall efficiency should get him looks in this year’s lottery if he continues to play well.

Twitter:
Comparison: David Lee
Salary: $1,999,500*
Power Forward / 6-10 / Duke / Freshman
4.3 ppg, 4.0 rpg

Giles has been limited all season and slow to return to form after blowing out both of his ACLs in high school. He plays with a big brace on his leg and has struggled to be a presence defensively or a dominant rebounder. He hasn’t pushed himself too hard and seems to be biding time before revving the engines into high gear. He has shown above-average mobility and speed for a big, but he hasn’t shown the burst or the elite explosiveness that made him many people’s top prospect in the class. While the knee and lack of minutes are sure to keep him from going too high, the potential for him to regain his form is sure to intrigue teams in the second half of the lottery. Giles was a guy that could hit mid-range shots with very good consistency before getting injured. He figures to find a spot somewhere in the 8-15 range on draft night.

Twitter: @HGizzle1
Comparison: Derrick Favors
Salary: $1,899,500*
Center / 7-0 / Gonzaga / Freshman
10.2 ppg, 5.7 rpg

Collins really could use a second year at Gonzaga. He came off the bench backing up Karnowski, to the tune of 10 points and 6 boards in just 17 minutes per game. He is extremely big, coordinated and mobile and has an excellent stroke. His shooting numbers were highly efficient at 65 percent from the floor, 75 percent from the line and 44 percent from three (8-18). While there’s still the chance that he will elect to return to Gonzaga to work on his skillset, word is that he is interested in leaving this year. If so, he will enter the league needing a lot of time, but the promise of being a center that can stretch the floor could be enough to see his name called in the late lottery.

Twitter: @zcollins_33
Comparison: Brook Lopez
Salary: $1,804,600*
Power Forward / 6-10 / Kentucky / Freshman
13.3 ppg, 7.8 rpg

Adebayo is more of an old-school big man as he lacks the shooting/scoring skill set that is coveted by so many teams in today’s NBA. But his athleticism and toughness will make him a handful on the block. He has been compared to Dwight Howard but that comparison only works to Old Superman, as a young Dwight would jump right over Bam. What he lacks in skill, he seems to make up for in energy and aggressiveness and should continue to develop as a post player over time.

Twitter: @Bam1of1
Comparison: Markieff Morris
Salary: $1,714,200*
Power Forward / 6-7 / Michigan State / Freshman
16.7 ppg, 8.3 rpg

Bridges is one of the freaks of the industry on the college level. His explosiveness is virtually unmatched and while he lacks a  skillset to fit either forward position, his elite-level athleticism masks a lot of his deficiencies. The hope is he can continue to expand his scoring ability and shooting consistency. He’s a strong personality and brings a great deal of determination. It will be interesting to see if he ultimately becomes an undersized 4, or trims down and becomes a bruising wing forward. His elite athleticism could make him a lock down defender in time.

Salary: $1,628,600*
Shooting Guard / 6-6 / Duke / Sophomore
20.1 ppg, 5.3 rpg

This may be a little high for Kennard as he lacks ideal size for a wing and isn’t a high-level defender or athlete. But he’s an absolute natural with his ballhandling skills and ability to shoot. He’s an excellent passer, and actually an underrated athlete. He surprised a lot of people by taking over the team from Grayson Allen in the early part of the year, but in reality he was the better high school player and some expected it to happen a year earlier. Kennard is such a high-level shooter, he should find a place in the league as a floor spreader, specialty player for years to come.

Twitter: @LukeKennard5
Comparison: Jeff Hornacek
Salary: $1,547,100*
Power Forward / 6-11 / Zalgiris Kaunas (Lithuania) / 1998
4.8 ppg, 4.2 rpg

Hartenstein was once seen as a prospect that could go in the top half of the lottery, but he has been riddled with leg injuries over the past couple seasons. He seems to be finding his groove once again as he showed scouts in Istanbul (U18 Euros) that he’s gaining his confidence and ability to dominate. He’s got a lot of talent with his combination of size, mobility and offensive polish. It’s really a matter of staying healthy, gaining strength and continuing to gain playing time and confidence.

Twitter: @Ipjh55
Comparison: Donatas Motiejunas
Salary: $1,469,800*
Small Forward / 6-9 / FC Barcelona B (Spain) / 1998
9.4 ppg, 2.3 rpg

Kurucs is a quick, explosive wing forward with solid scoring ability. He has struggled some with knee injuries over the past two years but is back on the floor and playing well. He plays with a high level of intensity and energy and shows a lot of focus. The young Latvian is well liked by scouts and could impress enough to be a Top 20 pick.

Twitter: @RODIONS1
Comparison: Sam Dekker
Salary: $1,403,600*
Center / 7-1 / Creighton / Freshman
13.1 ppg, 6.2 rpg

Patton is a red-shirt freshman who had a surprisingly strong season and could parlay that into being a first rounder. While not the smoothest or most explosive athlete, he shows solid mobility and an excellent skillset for his age. He has very good size and played with decent consistency all year. His touch and post game are both at a good level for his age and he should have a chance to develop into a contributor at the NBA level over time.

Comparison: Brendan Haywood
Salary: $1,347,400*
Power Forward / 6-10 / Wake Forest / Sophomore
19.2 ppg, 9.8 rpg

Collins had a solid showing in his lone “play in” NCAA tourney game in which Wake Forest lost to Kansas State. He’s an explosive athlete with solid aggressiveness. While he lacks a great face-up game, his rebounding and skill around the basket is intriguing. While Collins old school skillset gives him a clear-cut role, he doesn’t have a game that fits into today’s NBA as well as others and it could cost him a few spots on draft night.

Twitter:
Comparison: Richaun Holmes
Salary: $1,293,500*
Power Forward / 6-10 / California / Sophomore
14.0 ppg, 10.5 rpg

Rabb made a questionable decision to stay in school and probably lost a few spots from where he would have been drafted a year ago. He’s a bright kid with a solid skillset but he didn’t break out into the star that some envisioned. While he has a good understanding of the game, and gives consistent effort, he’s not the most physical or explosive athlete and also lacks fluidity. On the positive side, he has shown the ability to guard the pick-and-roll and has very good size at 6-10.

Twitter: @YoungIvee
Comparison: Andrew Nicholson
Salary: $1,241,800*
Small Forward / 6-9 / Syracuse / Sophomore
13.1 ppg, 8.5 rpg

Lydon is a tweener, but the fact that he has a pure outside shot, gives him a lot of intrigue with NBA scouts. He obviously needs to get stronger, and the Syracuse defensive system creates a certain level of  uncertainty and skepticism about how well he can defend. He needs to add a lot of strength, but scouts have been high on Lydon for over a year and despite an up and down, underachieving season for Syracuse, he is considered likely to leave and go late first round.

Comparison: Pat Garrity
Salary: $1,192,200*
Small Forward / 6-8 / North Carolina / Junior
18.1 ppg, 4.6 rpg

Jackson has been North Carolina’s go-to scorer and No. 1 option all season. While he lacks ideal toughness and strength, the fact that he has developed into a consistent outside shooter (38 percent from three) has boosted his first round chances. His near 7-foot wingspan gives him great length on the defensive end and boards. Concerns about his competitiveness and toughness have followed him since his prep days, but for a recruit that came in as a top 10 ranking, he finally delivered on that ability, proving to be the top junior prospect in our estimation in the country. Chandler Parsons is a bit of a reach, but if Jackson can continue to improve his shot he could carve out a role as an outside shooter with versatility.

Twitter:
Comparison: Chandler Parsons
Salary: $1,144,500*
Shooting Guard / 6-3 / Louisville / Sophomore
15.7 ppg, 4.6 rpg

Mitchell is not for everyone as some scouts write him off as a 6-foot-3 small forward. But he’s been such a steadying force for the Cardinals all season and plays with great energy and emotion. He has tremendous toughness and leadership and despite lacking ideal size, he’s extremely long and athletic. Despite being short for a 2-guard and lacking great ballhandling ability, he has a huge wingspan, close to 6-foot-10, giving him decent size for an off-guard. He has also proven to be an extremely explosive and aggressive guard attacking the rim for alley-oops and putback dunks. His jump shot has shown enough improvement to put him in the first round conversation.

Comparison: Norman Powell
Salary: $1,098,700*
Shooting Guard / 6-5 / Duke / Junior
14.1 ppg, 3.7 rpg

If nicknames were allowed on jerseys, Allen could just steal an old XFL name and go with “He Hate Me” as he apparently has embraced the role of most hated Dukie. While his on court antics have created a lot of anti-Grayson fodder on social media, his intensity and competitiveness have been exemplary. He made a questionable decision to return to school as he has been plagued by injuries and controversy all season. But considering how well he played last year and how competitive he’s proven to be, there’s a real chance he will get taken in the last few picks of the first round should he elect to declare.

Comparison: Bob Sura
Salary: $1,062,300*
Power Forward / 6-9 / Baylor / Junior
17.3 ppg, 9.9 rpg

Motley surprised many with a huge junior season. He really developed a lot of confidence and his offensive repertoire now consists of hook shots and mid-range jump shots. His efficiency has become solid and he benefits by being one of the most athletic bigs on the college level with a huge 7-foot-3 wingspan. His added strength has made him a handful on the boards, and his shot blocking adds further intrigue to his potential.

Twitter:
Comparison: Keon Clark
Salary: $1,031,600*
Shooting Guard / 6-7 / Florida State / Sophomore
16.9 ppg, 4.0 rpg

Bacon could use a strong showing in the NCAA tournament. He will also likely need to prove himself in workouts against the likes of Donovan Mitchell, Grayson Allen, Terrence Ferguson and Allonzo Trier in order to snatch one of the final first round spots. He had a solid year, though his bouts of inconsistency, particularly in the tail end of the year have put his draft stock in jeopardy.

Comparison: Gerald Wilkins
Salary: $1,025,300*
Power Forward / 6-9 / Purdue / Sophomore
18.5 ppg, 12.6 rpg

Biggie overcomes his lack of speed and athleticism with tremendous desire and will to win. He’s transformed his body and added a lot of skill. He’s got a massive 7-foot-3.5 wingspan and has developed his range out to the 3 point line. While he still has work left to ensure he gets drafted in the first round, he gets high marks for his character and work ethic. His ability to rebound and score on superior athletes defies logic and gives his NBA potential intrigue.

Twitter:
Comparison: Ike Diogu
Salary: $1,017,800*
Shooting Guard / 6-7 / Adelaide 36ers (Australia) / 1998
4.6 ppg, 1.1 rpg

Ferguson is all over the place on draft boards, and while his thin body and ability to create remain concerns, his shooting and defense give him a lot of intrigue. Teams will likely look for as much high-school footage as possible to accurately gauge his ability against solid competition. While his outside shooting was on display at the Nike Hoop Summit as he hit seven threes in the span of a few minutes. But concerns about maturity continue to surround him. Interviews and workouts are sure to factor heavily in his draft position.

Comparison: Rudy Fernandez
Salary: $1,010,500*

Key: (*) Standard salary for players selected with that pick in 2017-18.

, , , , , , , , ,

More HoopsHype
Home