Ray Boyd’s 2014 NBA Mock Draft 1.0
We now know who is picking where in the first round of the NBA Draft. The big three at the top of the draft, Andrew Wiggins, Joel Embiid and Jabari Parker, will more than likely wind up on the Cavaliers, Bucks and Sixers in some sort of combination.
Here is the first edition of my 2014 NBA First Round Mock Draft.
#1 Cleveland Cavaliers: SG/SF Andrew Wiggins, Kansas
Wiggins is currently the consensus best player in the draft, but the margin is not as wide as some think. This pick could go in a number of different directions and really any of the big three could wind up in Cleveland.
Wiggins could fit in with the Cavs as the new center-piece of their offense. Kyrie Irving has been looking for a sidekick to take some of the load off of him and Dion Waiters has not turned into a reliable offensive weapon.
The Cavaliers would be adding a two way player in Wiggins who would be able to step in and contribute on both ends of the floor on day one. Some see Cleveland going in a different direction to create a natural spot for the possible return of LeBron James.
#2 Milwaukee Bucks: C Joel Embiid, Kansas
The Jayhawks could very well go 1 and 2 in the draft this year in some sort of order. The Milwaukee Bucks were in line for the first pick but were vaulted by the Cavaliers and will have to pick with one of the big 3 off the board.
Embiid has been climbing boards for months and even had a stint as the consensus top pick. The Bucks have some guards and wing players like Brandon Knight and Giannis Antetokounmpo. Adding a solid Center in Embiid will give the Bucks a well rounded lineup and provides them with big man consistency that they have been lacking for years.
Embiid’s back to the basket abilities and upside will be too much for Milwaukee to pass up if he is still there.
#3 Philadelphia 76ers: SF Jabari Parker, Duke
Here is another player who spent some time a top the mock draft boards for awhile. Jabari Parker was the most consistent player in college out of the top three prospects.
Parker is also viewed as the most NBA ready player in the draft. The Sixers have needed a consistent wing scorer for years and Parker will fill that role immediately. He could be a great system fit for Brett Brown, who is a student of the Gregg Popovich school of offense.
He may not be the freakish athlete that Wiggins is, but it would not be shocking if Parker winds up being the more effective NBA player.
#4 Orlando Magic: PF Julius Randle, Kentucky
The Magic need size. They got knocked out of the top three, but will still get a solid contributor for the roster in Julius Randle.
They hit last year with Victor Oladipo, who more than likely would have been Rookie of the Year if it were not for Michael Carter-Williams. Adding Randle will give balance to their lineup and help to give them a big to score around the basket. Randle and Nikola Vucevic could combine for a big man tandem that could give teams match up issues.
#5 Utah Jazz: PF Aaron Gordon, Arizona
The Jazz select Aaron Gordon here for big man stability. Yes, the team has a decent starting foundation with Enes Kanter and Derrick Favors, but beyond that they need depth.
Gordon would have to do some climbing to go at five, but it only takes one team to fall in love with you. Gordon’s athleticism will be hard for teams to pass on. He is also the youngest prospect in the draft.
The Arizona product will push both of the Jazz bigs for a starting spot and fits the mold of the athletic, versatile Power Forward that teams are leaning toward.
#6 Boston Celtics: PF Noah Vonleh, Indiana
Noah Vonleh did not receive a ton of attention due to a down season for the Hoosiers, but his talent can not be ignored. He could help to give the Celtics more depth down low and has a level of versatility that teams clamor for.
Vonleh is a solid rebounder and can stretch the floor on the offensive end. The Celtics pick here could be much different if they opt to move Rajon Rondo, but if the floor general stays, they got to get him some help.
#7 Los Angeles Lakers: PG/SG Dante Exum, Australia
The Lakers are going to need a point guard of the future and Exum could be the player they need. The Australian sensation is one of the most intriguing prospects in the draft.
There are always question marks with foreign prospects due to not seeing them play as often and not being as familiar with the level of competition.
Exum however is a very versatile player who has the ability to run an offense and also play off the ball as a two guard. He likens to a Derrick Rose, but has the advantage of superior size at 6’6.
#8 Sacramento Kings: PF/SF Doug McDermott, Creighton
The Sacramento Kings have a lot of the necessary pieces in place to win. Rudy Gay and Demarcus Cousins are very solid NBA players, but the Kings need another element.
Doug McDermott has the opportunity to join the Kings and fill a role to add some elite shooting to their offense. Having a wing that can space the floor and score in a variety of ways will open things up for Gay and Cousins.
#9 Charlotte Hornets: PG/SG Marcus Smart, Oklahoma State
The first pick of the second Hornets regime will be Marcus Smart. Although, the Hornets have a great Point Guard in Kemba Walker, they need a secondary scoring punch.
Smart may not be a day one starter in Charlotte, but the Hornets are not in a position to draft based on need. Smart will give them guard depth and will compete for a starting spot alongside Walker.
Due to his size and shooting ability, he could play the Shooting Guard spot in the NBA.
#10 Philadelphia 76ers: SG/SF Nik Stauskas, Michigan
The Sixers are the only team that currently possesses two picks in the Top 10 of this loaded NBA Draft. After filling their need for a wing scorer, the team will fill another gaping hole, a floor spacer.
Stauskas is a known commodity as shooter. He shot just over 44% from beyond the arc in college and shooting is a trait that often translates well to the next level.
Stauskas is much more than your typical sharp shooter. He is also more athletic than most people think and can slash and finish above the rim. At 6’6, he will be tough for two guards to defend. Carter-Williams, Stauskas and Parker would make for a very good 1,2,3 in Philly for years to come.
#11 Denver Nuggets: SG Gary Harris, Michigan State
The Denver Nuggets are lucky considering the talent on the roster to be selecting at 11. They have a serious need at the two guard spot. While Randy Foye is not a bad option, the Nuggets would be smart to take Gary Harris.
Harris is the prototypical NBA two guard. He has a decent size and can create his own shot off the dribble. He took a 6% drop in his long range shooting from year one to year two in college, but he still projects as a solid NBA guard.
#12 Orlando Magic: SF Rodney Hood, Duke
The Magic join the Sixers as the only other team with two picks in the lottery. After selecting Randle, the Magic will need to add some wing depth and there will be a lot of good small forwards on the board at 12.
Rodney Hood could be a great fit here. He will add another athletic wing to play alongside Oladipo. Hood proved in his one season at Duke, that he can be a solid scorer who can stretch the floor out to the three point line.
#13 Minnesota Timberwolves: SF T.J. Warren, NC State
If the Timberwolves have any hope of appeasing Kevin Love (which appears slim), they need scoring. Warren averaged close to 25 points per game last season and carried the Wolfpack’s offense.
He is not a terrific shooter and shot well below average from beyond the arc. With that said, he is a solid scorer that knows how to get to the basket and flat out score.
Sometimes you cannot teach a knack to score the basketball and show up in big moments. The Timberwolves have a lot of marginal wings, but no one that Warren can’t compete with.
#14 Phoenix Suns: SF Dario Saric, Croatia
Phoenix stunned everyone last season as they were on the brink of going to the playoffs when many believed they would be in the tanking boat. With that said, the Suns outperformed the talent on their roster.
Dario Saric is an international prospect that has been on people’s minds for a few years now. At 6’10 he can shoot it, handle it and help to space the floor.Saric is an interesting prospect who could go much higher but team’s may be shy about going with an international prospect in a draft with so many well proven prospects coming out of the NCAA.
Saric would be a very high value pick for the Suns.
#15 Atlanta Hawks: SF James Young, Kentucky
#16 Chicago Bulls: PF Adreian Payne, Michigan State
#17 Boston Celtics: SF/SG Kyle Anderson, UCLA
#18 Phoenix Suns: C Jusuf Nurkic, Bosnia
#19 Chicago Bulls: PG Tyler Ennis, Syracuse
#20 Toronto Raptors: SG P.J. Hairston, North Carolina
#21 Oklahoma City Thunder: PF Clint Capela, Switzerland
#22 Memphis Grizzlies: PF Cleanthony Early, Wichita State
#23 Utah Jazz: SF K.J. McDaniels, Clemson
#24 Charlotte Hornets: PF Jarnell Stokes, Tennessee
#25 Houston Rockets: PF Jerami Grant, Syracuse
#26 Miami Heat: SG C.J. Wilcox, Washington
#27 Phoenix Suns: PG Shabazz Napier, UCONN
#28 Los Angeles Clippers: SG Zach LaVine, UCLA
#29 Oklahoma City Thunder: SG Mario Hezonja, Croatia
#30 San Antonio Spurs: PF/C Mitch McGary, Michigan
Follow Ray on Twitter
Follow The Wooder Cooler on Twitter
LIKE The Wooder Cooler on Facebook