Yearly, NBA groups overlook somebody come draft day. In 2019, we all know Zion Williamson, Ja Morant, and R.J. Barrett properly, however who would be the inevitable participant — or gamers — to slide by means of the cracks?
In final 12 months’s draft, Landry Shamet — a key piece in a commerce involving Tobias Harris and an enormous shot-maker for the Clippers — was taken No. 26 general, Hawks All-Rookie Second group guard Kevin Huerter was chosen No. 19, and Knicks middle Mitchell Robinson went at No. 36. Late-round steals will occur! They all the time do.
Right here’s who the SB Nation employees thinks your group ought to snag.
1. Chuma Okeke
Okeke, an Auburn ahead, was having the sport of his life towards North Carolina within the Candy 16 when he tore his ACL. It’s a devastating harm that can set again the beginning of his NBA profession.
However his efficiency in that sport can be the explanation Okeke is on this draft. As scouts went again to take a look at his tape, they noticed a 6’eight combo ahead who looks like an excellent slot in at present’s NBA.
Okeke has a sophisticated really feel for the sport that interprets on each ends of the ground. Defensively, he has the scale, quickness, and approach to protect as much as three positions within the NBA. He put up monster block and steal charges this season as a sophomore, and has worth not solely on the level of assault, but additionally as a assist defender.
Offensively, Okeke hit 39 p.c of his threes and was an environment friendly scorer on quite a lot of play varieties, based on knowledge from Synergy Sports activities. He completed within the 91st percentile of half-court scorers, within the 81st percentile in transition, and graded out as “excellent” on cuts, post-ups, and in restricted isolation alternatives.
Okeke has lottery expertise for a participant who ought to be accessible late within the first spherical. He’s a prospect price being affected person for.
– Ricky O’Donnell
2. Jontay Porter
Porter risked the whole lot by going again to highschool for his sophomore season at Mizzou, and it’s a choice he might remorse for the remainder of his skilled profession. The 6’11 ahead tore his ACL and MCL in a scrimmage earlier than the 2018-19 season, then tore his ACL once more 5 months later with out stepping again onto the court docket. ACL accidents are scary, however not career-threatening, making the youthful brother of Nuggets’ 2018 lottery choose Michael Porter a low-risk, high-reward second-round choose.
In his one season in faculty, Porter was each bit the versatile huge man the trendy NBA seeks. He posted a 57 p.c true taking pictures proportion from the sphere, together with 37 p.c on 109 three-point makes an attempt. Porter was the No. 93 defensive rebounder within the nation and No. 90 in block proportion, too. Ten factors and 7 rebounds per sport might not sound like a lot, however he can do a little bit of the whole lot.
He’s definitely worth the late gamble for a group prepared to attend out his therapeutic course of.
– Matt Ellentuck
3. Admiral Schofield
Schofield was a key motive for Tennessee’s most profitable seasons in program historical past. The 2-time All-SEC guard stands at 6’6, however he like performs a lot larger than that. At 240 kilos, his energy and physicality permits him to slide into the publish to attain and rebound. That versatility makes Schofield an attention-grabbing prospect.
As a four-year faculty participant, he’s a completed product and sure can be instantly able to contribute to any group. No matter group finally ends up taking him will get quite a lot of worth from the choice.
In his senior season, Schofield averaged 16.5 factors and 6.1 rebounds per sport. He improved his three-point taking pictures all through his time at Tennessee, taking pictures practically 42 from past the arc in 2019. Defensively, Schofield has confirmed himself alongside the perimeter, however might battle guarding a number of the NBA’s bigger forwards.
General, Schofield has a excessive ground with potential for extra growth. He’s primed to be a stable function participant for any NBA group this coming season.
– Kennedi Landry
4. Grant Williams
Regardless of successful the SEC Participant of the Yr Award for the previous two seasons, Williams has flown beneath the radar on this draft. Regardless of being solely 6’7, Williams has the instruments to contribute within the NBA from day one. He is an efficient facilitator, crashes the glass, and was an environment friendly scorer throughout his last season with the Volunteers.
Williams posted a real taking pictures proportion of practically 65 p.c as a result of he doesn’t attempt to drive photographs up. He can rating anyplace within the paint, utilizing his energy to maneuver defenders off him. Williams solely shot 29 p.c from three at UT, however his stable free throw proportion, which was at 82 p.c final season, exhibits there’s a path for him so as to add deep taking pictures to his huge array of offensive expertise. Williams additionally recorded an help proportion of 18.5 final season, suggesting he could make sensible reads to open teammates when defenders collapsed in on him. Defensively Williams can maintain his personal, once more utilizing his energy to not get moved round by larger gamers.
Whereas Williams doesn’t precisely have famous person potential, the talents he’s proven give him the makings of a key participant on a contending group.
5. Kyle Man
The Virginia sharpshooter raised some eyebrows when he introduced that he was staying within the NBA Draft as a substitute of returning to highschool after the Cavaliers received the 2019 Nationwide Championship. Actually, there’s not a lot Man can enhance upon besides his dimension, and whereas coach Tony Bennett is just about one of the best round, he nonetheless can’t make guys taller, so far as I do know.
The most important knock on Man is his small body (6’2, 168 kilos), however he can shoot the daylights out of the ball. In his last season in Charlottesville, Man shot 43 p.c on 282 makes an attempt from past the arc and averaged 15.Four factors per sport in a system that ranked useless final within the NCAA in possessions per sport. If a group is prepared to take an opportunity on him, they’ll get a hardworking, deadeye shooter with the flexibility to complete by means of contact on the rim.
– Caroline Darney
6. Cam Johnson
Johnson jogs my memory quite a lot of fellow UNC product Justin Jackson, who has grew to become a stable NBA participant for the Mavericks. He has the potential to develop into a superior scorer solely due to his lovely mixture of off-ball motion and a fast three-point set off. He’s a four-year faculty participant with nice defensive instincts off-the-ball as properly.
In brief: Johnson is tailored to thrive in an NBA infatuated by the three-point shot, riddled with offenses predicated on participant spacing and motion.
Like Jackson, although, Johnson will want the precise surroundings to achieve his full potential. For that motive, I hope he slides down the draft boards. (You’ll get that verify on the again finish, huge fella. I promise you!)
I might like to see him in Indiana, Atlanta, or, dare I say, San Francisco subsequent season.
— Kristian Winfield
7. Simi Shittu
The five-star 6’10 huge man was a poor match on a Vanderbilt group that completed the season on a 20-game dropping streak. He clashed with since-fired head coach Bryce Drew and recovered slowly from the torn ACL that value him an enormous chunk of his last season as a excessive schooler.
That made it a bit shocking when he not solely declared for the draft, but additionally stored his hat within the ring after Drew was fired and Jerry Stackhouse took the reins at Vandy. Moderately than choose up one other 12 months of seasoning for a group destined to be higher in 2019-20 (for no different motive than it virtually definitely couldn’t be worse), Shittu determined to roll the cube on a professional profession.
It is likely to be the precise resolution! Shittu has appeared like a brand new man this summer time, showcasing the pace and explosion to be a hard-cutting, lane-annihilating huge who can cross his manner out of hassle and switch an inch of house into an enormous end on the rim. He’s not a lot of a shooter, which is successfully the demise sentence that might hold him from listening to his identify known as Thursday, but when he can present his knee harm and lack of ability to discover a correct function at Vandy had been the limiting components in his lone NCAA season, he’ll have a spot within the NBA.
Take a flier on Shittu and also you’re getting an athletic huge man who isn’t afraid to shoot the ball from lengthy vary — even when he shouldn’t typically. He’s a participant who can facilitate an offense from the publish. He’s additionally extraordinarily uncooked, however hey, what’s mistaken with a big gamble within the second spherical?
– Christian D’Andrea
Give him a shot!
– Seth Rosenthal