2023 Aggregate NBA mock draft 1.0: Victor Wembanyama vs Scoot Henderson for No. 1 pick

2023 Aggregate NBA mock draft 1.0: Victor Wembanyama vs Scoot Henderson for No. 1 pick

Mock Draft

2023 Aggregate NBA mock draft 1.0: Victor Wembanyama vs Scoot Henderson for No. 1 pick

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The 2023 NBA Draft class is headlined by center Victor Wembanyama and guard Scoot Henderson, with both players expected to battle it out to be the No. 1 pick, according to NBA executives who spoke with HoopsHype.

HoopsHype also gathered thoughts from several NBA executives and scouts for their insight on the projected lottery picks for the first edition of the aggregate mock draft.

To get a better projection of where all of the projected top prospects stand heading into the new season, we compiled mock drafts from ESPN, The Athletic, Bleacher Report, NBADraft.net, CBS Sports, SB Nation, Yahoo, and USA TODAY’s For The Win.

NOTE: These rankings reflect the composite score to get a feel for the overall consensus, not our own opinion. For example, if a player was the first pick on a publication’s mock draft, he received 60 points. If a player was second, he received 59 points and so on. We then tabulated the total number of points for each player’s consensus ranking. 

HoopsHype’s Alberto de Roa contributed research to this report.

1. Victor Wembanyama

PHILIPPE DESMAZES/AFP/Getty Images

(Boulogne-Levallois: Big, International, 7-2)

Best rank: 1 (ESPN, The Athletic, Bleacher Report, CBS Sports, Yahoo, SB Nation, For The Win)

Worst rank: 2

NBA talent evaluators have drooled over Victor Wembanyama’s 7-foot-9 wingspan, 9-foot-7 standing reach, and perimeter skills from afar for the past three years overseas, making him the projected No. 1 pick in seven of eight mock drafts polled.

“Wembanyama is a physical freak who plays like a guard that can hit step-back shots and handle the ball,” an NBA general manager told HoopsHype. “His durability is a concern. He’s not Kristaps Porzingis. I think he’s more talented. Defensively, he’s like Evan Mobley. Offensively, he’s like Porzingis.”

“I think Wembanyama is more of a sure thing than Chet Holmgren, and Chet went second overall,” another NBA general manager told HoopsHype. “I think he’s got a slightly better body, and he will be younger than Chet by the time of the draft. I think he has more offensive wiggle to his game.”

2. Scoot Henderson

Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

(Ignite: Guard, G League, 6-2)

Best rank: 1 (NBADraft.net)

Worst rank: 2

Scoot Henderson earned the first overall pick in one of the eight mock drafts polled, making him the only player besides Wembanyama to receive that distinction. 

“Scoot checks a lot of boxes for an elite guard,” an NBA general manager told HoopsHype. “He and Wembanyama have a chance to be All-Star franchise cornerstone players for an NBA team. Scoot is a tank. He’s athletic, dunks on people, makes plays for others, and has length.” 

“You could put Scoot on an NBA court tomorrow,” an NBA scout told HoopsHype. “He looks like a grown man and is a modern-day scoring guard.”

3. Nick Smith

Caitlyn Jordan/Naples Daily News/USA Today Network

(Arkansas: Guard, Freshman, 6-5)

Best rank: 3 (ESPN, Bleacher Report, Yahoo, For The Win)

Worst rank: 13 (NBADraft.net)

According to two NBA general managers who spoke with HoopsHype, Nick Smith and the Thompson twins with Overtime Elite are in the running for third overall on their big boards. 

“Smith is an undersized three-level scorer who’s a willing passer, but not a main ball handler, and competes defensively,” an NBA scout observed. 

4. Ausar Thompson

Courtesy: Overtime Elite

(Elite: Wing, Overtime, 6-6)

Best rank: 3 (CBS Sports)

Worst rank: 23

While Ausar has drawn the slight nod ahead of his twin brother, Amen, in the eyes of the mock draft polled, NBA executives and scouts view the twins equally.

One NBA general manager described Ausar Thompson as an “insane” athlete and added Thompson’s passing caught his eye.

5. Dariq Whitehead

Steph Chambers/Getty Images

(Duke: Wing, Freshman, 6-6)

Best rank: 3 (NBADraft.net)

Worst rank: 9

Whitehead is the first of three Duke players featured in the first round of the aggregate mock draft as the Blue Devils begin the post-Mike Krzyzewski era. 

“At Montverde, he played more on the ball after being considered a bit of a 3-and-D originally,” an NBA general manager observed. “He’s a competitor with good size and a high IQ. His shot has improved. The question will be his upside.”

“He’s a well-rounded guard who looks the part physically and has the tools to be a plus defender,” an NBA scout said. “His jumper is inconsistent, and he doesn’t have a feel for playing on the ball but is willing to move it.” 

Whitehead underwent successful surgery to repair a fracture in his right foot that he sustained on Monday, August 29, during a team workout. He will begin rehab immediately and is expected to play this fall, according to Duke.

6. Amen Thompson

Courtesy: Overtime Elite

(Elite: Wing, Overtime, 6-6)

Best rank: 3 (SB Nation)

Worst rank: 29

Similar to his brother, Ausar, Amen Thompson’s athleticism, size and passing ability have drawn the eyes of NBA talent evaluators.

“Amen is an athletic two-way player who plays hard and is well rounded,” an NBA scout told HoopsHype. “The biggest question surrounding him is whether he can shoot?” 

7. Cameron Whitmore

Courtesy: fiba.basketball

(Villanova: Wing, Freshman, 6-6)

Best rank: 3 (The Athletic)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

Cameron Whitmore was named MVP of the 2022 FIBA Americas U18 Championship tournament and one of the top players in NIKE Hoops Summit practices, according to multiple NBA talent evaluators on hand.

“I love Whitmore,” an NBA general manager told HoopsHype. “He’s ready to play and can be an NBA starter. He’s a junkyard dog. He defends and has a high motor. He’s a typical Villanova kid.”

“Whitmore is a strong and explosive wing who’s very competitive and plays with a chip on his shoulder on both ends of the ball,” an NBA scout told HoopsHype. “He’s fearless attacking the rim and is an underrated passer who’s fun in transition. His shot could use some work and more consistency.”

8. Dereck Lively

Steph Chambers/Getty Images

(Duke: Big, Freshman, 7-1)

Best rank: 8 (ESPN, Bleacher Report, Yahoo)

Worst rank: 13

Dereck Lively was the No. 1 overall player in ESPN Top 100 rankings for the class of 2022 and could be the second big man taken in the draft following Wembanyama. 

“Lively is more advanced defensively where he can play pick-and-roll defense, alter shots, and move well for his size,” an NBA scout told HoopsHype. “He’s a screen-and-roll player on offense who can finish around the rim. He can shoot the ball too, but shooting isn’t a main part of his game yet. He’s got work to do to become a reliable shooter.” 

9. Anthony Black

Courtesy: fiba.basketball

(Arkansas: Guard, Freshman, 6-7)

Best rank: 7 (NBADraft.net)

Worst rank: 14

Multiple NBA talent evaluators who spoke with HoopsHype described Anthony Black as a big guard or point forward who’s at his best with the ball in his hands with a high IQ who thrives as a passer in pick-and-roll sets and transition. He’s more athletic than given credit for but needs to improve defensively.

“He’s not always an aggressive scorer or shooter, but he can rebound and pass well for his position,” an NBA executive observed.

10. Kel'el Ware

Steph Chambers/Getty Images

(Oregon: Big, Freshman, 7-0)

Best rank: 5 (SB Nation)

Worst rank: 16

If Kel’el Ware becomes a Top 10 pick, he’d be the first Oregon Duck to do so since Luke Jackson, who was selected No. 10 overall in the 2004 draft.

“Ware is a modern-day big man who can be a rim runner and a good defender by altering shots but needs more consistency,” an NBA scout observed. “He can shoot the ball even though his mechanics can use some work.” 

11. Cason Wallace

AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast

(Kentucky: Guard, Freshman, 6-4)

Best rank: 5 (NBADraft.net)

Worst rank: 17

Cason Wallace is considered a combo guard who is an effective perimeter scorer, who’s an excellent rebounder for his position, and a stout defender.

Kentucky coach John Calipari has compared Wallace to Eric Bledsoe and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander. “I don’t like to make a lot of comparisons like that, but he has a quiet demeanor with a game that speaks loudly,” Calipari said. “He can shoot it and create for his teammates, but what really separates him is his defense. He is already an elite on-ball defender who takes a lot of pride in that part of the game.”

12. Dillon Mitchell

Courtesy: The News-Press

(Texas: Wing, Freshman, 6-7)

Best rank: 6 (NBADraft.net)

Worst rank: 18

Dillon Mitchell, one of the best dunkers in his class, was ESPN’s No. 4 ranked recruit for the class of 2022. Mitchell is a versatile defender who moves well laterally. He’ll need to improve his shot at the foul line and three-point arc to balance out his uber athleticism. 

Mitchell signed with CAA Sports for NIL representation in June. 

13. Keyonte George

Steph Chambers/Getty Images

(Baylor: Guard, Freshman, 6-4)

Best rank: 8 (The Athletic)

Worst rank: 25

At one point, Keyonte George was ranked No. 3 overall by ESPN in the class of 2022, making him the highest-ranked recruit in Baylor history.

One NBA general manager described George as a “microwave scorer.” The executive questioned if George would be a point guard or shooting guard long-term.

“George is an undersized shooter who can play on or off the ball and can make shots off pin-down screens,” an NBA scout said. “His size and athleticism for the guard position are questionable.”

14. Terquavion Smith

Lance King/Getty Images

(NC State: Guard, Sophomore, 6-4)

Best rank: 11 (The Athletic)

Worst rank: 18

Terquavion Smith was considered a potential first-round pick in the 2022 draft before deciding to return to school. Now, all eyes will be on Smith heading into ACC play with N.C. State.

Terquavion Smith could be a lottery pick,” an NBA scout told HoopsHype. “He’s an athletic three-level scorer and is very aggressive. He needs to make better reads and decisions with the ball in pick-and-roll situations. Defensively, he needs to improve and get stronger.”

In our first aggregate mock draft, Smith rounds out the lottery.

15. Amari Bailey

Steph Chambers/Getty Images

(UCLA: Guard, Freshman, 6-4)

Best rank: 13 (Bleacher Report, Yahoo)

Worst rank: 29

16. Leonard Miller

Steph Chambers/Getty Images

(Ignite: Wing, G League, 6-10)

Best rank: 14 (CBS Sports)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in two mock drafts)

17. Jarace Walker

Courtesy: The News-Press

(Houston: Big, Freshman, 6-8)

Best rank: 9 (SB Nation)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in one mock draft)

18. Gradey Dick

Steph Chambers/Getty Images

(Kansas: Wing, Freshman, 6-7)

Best rank: 13 (The Athletic)

Worst rank: 30

19. Arthur Kaluma

Ron Jenkins/Getty Images

(Creighton: Wing, Sophomore, 6-7)

Best rank: 13 (CBS Sports, For The Win)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in two mock drafts)

20. Kris Murray

Courtesy: HawkCentral

(Iowa: Wing, Junior, 6-8)

Best rank: 9 (NBADraft.net)

Worst rank: 47

21. Kyle Filipowski

Steph Chambers/Getty Images

(Duke: Big, Freshman, 6-11)

Best rank: 15 (ESPN)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in two mock drafts)

22. Brandon Miller

Courtesy: The Tennessean

(Alabama: Wing, Freshman, 6-9)

Best rank: 8 (NBADraft.net)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in four mock drafts)

23. Harrison Ingram

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

(Stanford: Wing, Sophomore, 6-8)

Best rank: 24 (The Athletic, Bleacher Report, Yahoo)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in one mock draft)

24. Sidy Cissoko

Steph Chambers/Getty Images

(Ignite: Wing, G League, 6-7)

Best rank: 19 (NBADraft.net)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in four mock drafts)

25. Chris Livingston

Christian Petersen/Getty Images

(Kentucky: Wing, Freshman, 6-6)

Best rank: 19 (Bleacher Report, Yahoo)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in two mock drafts)

26. Rayan Rupert

Courtesy: fiba.basketball

(New Zealand Breakers: Wing, International, 6-6)

Best rank: 22 (ESPN)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in four mock drafts)

27. Julian Strawther

AP Photo/Young Kwak

(Gonzaga: Guard, Junior, 6-7)

Best rank: 17 (CBS Sports)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in two mock drafts)

28. Caleb Love

Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

(North Carolina: Guard, Junior, 6-3)

Best rank: 18 (Bleacher Report, Yahoo)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in two mock drafts)

29. Marcus Sasser

Marvin Gentry-USA TODAY Sports

(Houston: Guard, Senior, 6-2)

Best rank: 27 (ESPN, The Athletic)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in three mock drafts)

30. Emoni Bates

Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

(Eastern Michigan: Wing, Sophomore, 6-9)

Best rank: 20 (Bleacher Report, Yahoo)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in two mock drafts)

31. Jordan Hawkins

(UConn: Wing, Sophomore, 6-5)

Best rank: 12 (NBADraft.net)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in five mock drafts)

32. Julian Phillips

(Tennessee: Wing, Freshman, 6-8)

Best rank: 17 (ESPN)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in three mock drafts)

33. James Nnaji

(Barcelona: Big, International, 6-10)

Best rank: 20 (ESPN)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in two mock drafts)

34. Jaime Jaquez

(UCLA: Wing, Senior, 6-7)

Best rank: 26 (SB Nation)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in three mock drafts)

35. Jordan Walsh

(Arkansas: Wing, Freshman, 6-7)

Best rank: 12 (SB Nation)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in four mock drafts)

36. Trayce Jackson-Davis

(Indiana: Big, Senior, 6-9)

Best rank: 14 (NBADraft.net)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in four mock drafts)

37. Baba Miller

(Florida State: Big, Freshman, 6-11)

Best rank: 16 (NBADraft.net)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in six mock drafts)

38. Nikola Djurisic

(Mega Basket: Wing, International, 6-8)

Best rank: 30 (ESPN)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in five mock drafts)

39. Andre Jackson

(UConn: Wing, Junior, 6-6)

Best rank: 22 (The Athletic)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in five mock drafts)

40. Oscar Tshiebwe

(Kentucky: Big, Senior, 6-9)

Best rank: 37 (The Athletic)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in four mock drafts)

41. Matthew Cleveland

(Florida State: Wing, Sophomore, 6-7)

Best rank: 21 (Bleacher Report, Yahoo)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in two mock drafts)

42. Terrence Shannon

(Illinois: Wing, Senior, 6-6)

Best rank: 31 (NBADraft.net)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in five mock drafts)

43. GG Jackson

(South Carolina: Big, Freshman, 6-10)

Best rank: 4 (NBADraft.net)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in seven mock drafts)

44. Ousmane Ndiaye

(Dragons Rhoendorf: Big, International, 6-11)

Best rank: 28 (ESPN)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in six mock drafts)

45. JJ Starling

(Notre Dame: Guard, Freshman, 6-4)

Best rank: 20 (CBS Sports)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in four mock drafts)

46. Colby Jones

(Xavier: Wing, Junior, 6-6)

Best rank: 21 (The Athletic)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in six mock drafts)

47. Adem Bona

(UCLA: Big, Freshman, 6-10)

Best rank: 36 (For The Win)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in six mock drafts)

48. Armando Bacot

(North Carolina: Big, Senior, 6-10)

Best rank: 35 (NBADraft.net)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in six mock drafts)

49. Baylor Scheierman

(Creighton: Guard, Senior, 6-7)

Best rank: 38 (For The Win)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in five mock drafts)

50. Drew Timme

(Gonzaga: Big, Senior, 6-10)

Best rank: 45 (ESPN, The Athletic)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in four mock drafts)

51. Nolan Hickman

(Gonzaga: Guard, Sophomore, 6-2)

Best rank: 26 (Bleacher Report, Yahoo)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in four mock drafts)

52. Kevin McCullar

(Kansas: Guard, Senior, 6-6)

Best rank: 34 (For The Win)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in five mock drafts)

53. Seth Trimble

(North Carolina: Guard, Freshman, 6-3)

Best rank: 21 (NBADraft.net)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in seven mock drafts)

54. Coleman Hawkins

(Illinois: Big, Junior, 6-10)

Best rank: 35 (The Athletic)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in six mock drafts)

55. Azuolas Tubelis

(Arizona: Big, Junior, 6-10)

Best rank: 39 (NBADraft.net)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in six mock drafts)

56. Brandon Huntley-Hatfield

(Louisville: Big, Sophomore, 6-10)

Best rank: 30 (NBADraft.net)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in seven mock drafts)

57. Jalen Wilson

(Kansas: Big, Junior, 6-8)

Best rank: 29 (SB Nation)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in six mock drafts)

58. Ariel Hukporti

(Melbourne: Big, International, 7-0)

Best rank: 41 (The Athletic)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in five mock drafts)

59. Nimari Burnett

(Alabama: Guard, Sophomore, 6-4)

Best rank: 33 (NBADraft.net)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in seven mock drafts)

60. Eric Gaines

(UAB: Guard, Junior, 6-2)

Best rank: 34 (NBADraft.net)

Worst rank: NR (not ranked)

(Not included in seven mock drafts)

You can follow Michael Scotto (@MikeAScotto) on Twitter. 

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