Jun 26, 2014, 11:01 PM EDT
No more rumors, no more smokescreens and no more agents trying to spin — it’s time for action.
NBA teams are on the clock.
The 2014 NBA Draft is here.
In this post we will update you with every pick, telling you a little about the player your team just selected. We’ll also keep you up to date with all the trade action going on (and there could be a lot of that tonight). Just hit refresh and you’ll have the latest news and analysis as teams sort through a crop of players with a lot of potential but a lot of questions.
Let’s get this underway with NBA Commissioner Adam Silver, who for one year is not going to get booed.
1. Cleveland Cavaliers: Andrew Wiggins, 6’8” small forward, Kansas. The most hyped, anticipated draft pick in years, it’s a lot to live up to but he has a lot going for him — freakish athlete, he has good skills (which need polishing on the offensive end), he defends very well, and by all reports is very coachable with a good hoops IQ. He can be a key building piece along with Kyrie Irving. Can he be transcendent is another question.
2. Milwaukee Bucks:Jabari Parker, 6’8” power forward, Duke. A polished scorer, the most NBA ready of the top picks, he can put up points for the Bucks from Day 1. He can be used as a four in small line-ups or at the three for bigger one, that plus his versatility on offense led to Carmelo Anthony/Paul Pierce comparisons. But Parker has a lot of work to do on the defensive end (remember Coach K benched him late in Duke’s tournament loss, it was for that reason). Still, put him in a front line rotation with John Henson and Larry Sanders (if he gets his head screwed back on) and you have something to build on.
3. Philadelphia 76ers: Joel Embiid, 7’0” center, Kansas. You already know the concerns about him being injury prone — he had two screws put in the navicular bone of his right foot, after a stress fracture in his back. Those are the kinds of injuries that can become chronic. Still, this is a great gamble by the Sixers. In a league without many dominant centers anymore, Embiid could become one. Before the injury he was incredibly athletic and mobile for someone his size, he was great at rim protecting, he could rebound, and his offensive game was all about potential. How far he bounces back remains to be seen but if he gets close to his potential the Sixers have a steal. They likely just have to wait a year to find out.
4: Orlando Magic: Aaron Gordon, 6’9” power forward, Arizona. A little surprised he went this high. One of the best athletes in a draft deep with good athletes, Gordon is going to impress Magic fans making plays running the floor in transition (expect some spectacular dunks), he will grab boards and he can defend multiple positions. But he has a lot of work to do, he needs a lot of polish in the halfcourt offense — he doesn’t have a good jumper or post up game. He just gets his points on athleticism, that could limit his ceiling (especially if it doesn’t change). Shawn Marion is often the comp used with him. Gordon and Victor Oladipo give the Magic a couple nice young pieces out of the last two drafts.
5. Utah Jazz: Dante Exum, 6’6” combo guard, Australia. He’s a big point guard who can play at the two spot, offering a lot of versatility next to Trey Burke in the backcourt. He’s got impressive skills for a young player — he can get to the rim and plays a smart game — with plenty of room to grow. He needs to develop a consistent jumper with three point range, the jumper needs work. There was a division between people in the Marcus Smart camp and the Exum camp — Exum has a higher ceiling but is lest tested and a bigger gamble. Still, the Jazz need a star to go with some nice young pieces, he’s the one guy on the board who could become one.
6. Boston Celtics: Marcus Smart, 6’3” point guard, Oklahoma State. With questions about what Danny Ainge will do with Rajon Rondo, Smart could be the Celtics’ point guard for the next decade. Smart has good size, he’s aggressive in attacking the rim, he’s a deft passer and, most importantly, he is possibly the best defender in the draft. He’s got to develop a more consistent jump shot, he’s got to learn to limit turnovers, but this is a quality pickup.
7. Los Angeles Lakers: Julius Randle, 6’9” power forward, Kentucky. He said he grew up a Kobe Bryant fan, now he gets to see what it’s like to be his teammate. Lakers’ fans are going to like Randle from the start because he can come in and start putting up points and grabbing boards from Day 1. He is strong and agile, which makes him dangerous in the post and on the boards. He can put up double doubles from the start. There is mixed opinions about how good a defender he can be, he’s not long. He needs to ultimately develop a jumper and take care of the ball better, this things can limit his ceiling. But there’s a lot to like.
8. Sacramento Kings: Nik Stauskas, 6’6” shooting guard, Michigan. This seems high to me but he is probably the best shooter in this draft, he has ridiculous range and can shoot from the midrange as well. More than just catch-and-shoot, he can put the ball on the floor a little to create a shot for himself (although how well he does that against faster NBA defenders remains to be seen). The Kings need someone who can space the floor and create a little extra room for DeMarcus Cousins inside, although last year the Kings picked Ben McLemore to be that guy (not sure how they fit together). There are serious questions about his defense — he’s not quick laterally, not long and he’s going to be matched up on athletic freaks at the two guard spot. His improvement at that end of the floor determines his playing time and longevity in the league.
9. Charlotte Hornets: Noah Vonleh, 6’9” power forward, Indiana. He slipped on draft day, he was top five projected by many. He’s a big man seemingly built for the modern game, able to play inside and score with either hand (he has a nice jump hook) plus he can shoot from deep, hitting 48.5 percent from three last season. He plays bigger than his size thanks to a massive 7’4.5” wingspan, plus he has huge hands. The questions are his high turnovers, poor passing, and doubts about whether he is explosive enough to adjust to the NBA game in the paint. He can learn next to Al Jefferson, nice fit.
10. Philadelphia 76ers: Elfrid Payton, 6’4” point guard, Louisiana Lafayette. He is being traded to the Orlando Magic for Dario Saric. For Payton this is good, he is a better fit in Orlando (no Michael Carter-Williams at the same position). One of the fastest risers in the draft over the past few weeks, there is a lot to like. A tall point guard he can break down defenses off the dribble, is good at finding teammates with the pass, and uses his quickness and length to be a very good defender. The big problem is he lacks a jump shot — he shot 25 percent on jumpers in the half court offense last season. That has to be fixed, but he has good form.
11. Denver Nuggets (to be traded to Chicago Bulls): Doug McDermott, 6’8” forward, Creighton. He appears headed to the Chicago Bulls in a trade, a place that is a great fit for him as they need shooting from the four and he can do that. McDermott certainly has the outside shot (44.9 percent from three) but more than that he can put the ball on the floor, post up and score in a variety of ways — and do it efficiently. The question is how his game translates — he’s not a great athlete by NBA standards, he plays below the rim, and while he got mismatches in college in the NBA the guys guarding him will be more athletic. How does he adjust? And there are questions about how well he can defend at the next level, and if he can’t defend Tom Thibodeau will not play him.
12. Orlando Magic: Dario Saric, 6’10” forward, Croatia. He will be traded to Philadelphia is a swap for Elfrid Payton. Saric has signed a contract to spend the next two years playing in Turkey, so this is a draft and stash for the Sixers after the trade. Saric is maybe the versatile offensive player in this draft, you may not know his name but scouts have followed him for years. He has point-forward skills with a very high hoops IQ. Saric has impressive ball handling skills for his size, great scoring instincts (in the post and in transition), plus he can pass. He needs a more polished jumper and to get stronger, plus to work on his defense, and he’s going to do that in Europe. Still a lot of potential here.
13: Minnesota Timberwolves: Zach LaVine, 6’6” shooting guard, UCLA. The question here isn’t athleticism — as the picture that went around the Web showed, he can leap out of the building. He is an elite NBA level athlete. The question is can he play basketball well? He used just 9.7 percent of UCLA’s possessions while on the floor, he is fantastic in transition or coming off screens, but he struggled to create in the half court. His jump shot mechanics are ugly but he hit 37 percent from three. PBT’s own Ed Isaacson didn’t even rank him in the top 10 shooting guards because of questions about his skills. Expect to see him get some D-League run as a rookie to see if he can find more of an all-around game.
14. Phoenix Suns: T.J. Warren, 6’8” forward, North Carolina State. One of the top scorers in college basketball last season, he knows to find holes in the defense to get his shot, works hard off the ball, has a nice runner, and should pair well with Goran Dragic and Eric Bledsoe in Phoenix. However, most of those shots are from the midrange, a dying shot in the NBA (Warren shot 26.7 percent from three and his jump shot mechanics are not good). He’s not much of a passer How will his game translate?
15. Atlanta Hawks: Adreian Payne, 6’10” power forward, Michigan State. This is a good pick for Atlanta. Payne finally put his entire game together his senior year in Lansing, and he is a stretch four prospect in the NBA (he shot 42 percent from three last season). Not just a shooter, Payne can put the ball on the floor and has a post game. Is he strong enough to guard fours in the NBA? His defense has not been great, but is not terrible. Paired with Al Horford and Paul Millsap in the rotation it gives the Hawks some versatility along the front line.
16. Chicago Bulls (to be traded to Denver Nuggets): Josuf Nurkic, 6’10” center, Bosnia. He’s big, he’s physical but he is a bit of a project. There are things to like — NBA size, toughness, good footwork, he’s an efficient scorer with a good touch around the rim, and he works for rebounds. That said he’s not athletic for a center by NBA standards, and he needs to learn how to play defense and just gain experience in general. He could spend time in Europe for seasoning before coming over. Which is likely what the Bulls want because they want cap space to go after another star.
17. Boston Celtics: James Young, 6’7” swingman, Kentucky. He looks like an NBA wing, tall and long (6’11” wingspan). Young was recruited as a shooter but he hit just 35 percent from three last year and inside the arc took far too many contested shots. He can put the ball on the floor but really only goes left, something defenses figured out. He has the athleticism to be a good defender but needs a lot of work and more focus on that end. A lot of potential here but a lot of work to do to realize it.
18. Phoenix Suns: Tyler Ennis, 6’2” point guard, Syracuse. He is a real floor general kind of point guard, one who showed a mature game on the court. The kind of guy who could be a solid backup for Goran Dragic. The question is what kind of playmaker Ennis can be at the NBA level — he struggled to do that in college (don’t let a few buzzer beaters fool you, he only finished 50% of his half court offense shots in the paint) and the defenses are about to get tougher.
19. Chicago Bulls (to be traded to Denver Nuggets): Gary Harris, 6’4” shooting guard, Michigan State. This late in the draft this is a steal for Denver (and a great backup for Arron Afflalo). One of the best two guards in this class, he has a sweet shooting stroke he can use either off the bounce or catch-and-shoot. He plays a smart game, rarely turning the ball over. Maybe the things scouts like best about him is his defense — he can guard the one or the two, although he will be tested against taller two guards in the NBA. He’s not athletic for the NBA level, he’s not going to create his own shot much, but he’s a guy who could pay off long term as his skills develop more.
20. Toronto Raptors: Bruno Caboclo, 6’9” small forward, Brazil. The first way off the board, unexpected pick… expect we should have expected nothing less from Masai Ujiri. Caboclo worked out for zero teams. He came out of the NBA’s international Basketball without Borders program. Aside that he’s a complete mystery. Fran Fraschilla said on the ESPN broadcast he is athletic but very, very raw and at least three or four years away from the league. So a long-term draft and stash.
21. Oklahoma City Thunder: Mitch McGary, 6’10” center, Michigan. For a player that needs to develop some McGary couldn’t have landed in a better spot. He is a pick-and-roll big man who is trying to add the pick-and-pop to his game but appears to need work on his shot (he only played 8 games last season due to injury). He gets his buckets mostly running in transition, on the offensive glass (he’s aggressive going for rebounds) or just moving off the ball. He sets an NBA caliber pick already. He’s pretty average defensively. Should make a decent backup big off the bench.
22. Memphis Grizzlies: Jordan Adams, 6’5” shooting guard, UCLA. My favorite of the three Bruins likely to go in the first round, he plays a smart game. He finds holes in the defense to get of his shot and is an efficient scorer, although he needs to develop a three point shot, especially because the Grizzlies need shooting. He is a good, smart defender on and off the ball. He’s not an explosive athlete but he’s got a unique game in this draft class and should have a good NBA career.
23. Utah Jazz: Rodney Hood, 6’8” small forward, Duke. Good value pick for the Jazz here. Hood has the size of an NBA wing and is one of the best shooters in the draft hitting nearly 43 percent from three last season. He can shoot from the midrange, put the ball on the floor some and tends to make the smart pass. The questions are his defense (he was disinterested at times) and how his game translate when guarded by athletic threes not mismatched on fours as often happened at Duke.
24. Charlotte Hornets: Shabazz Napier, 6’1” point guard, Connecticut. He will be traded to the Miami Heat, according to multiple reports. The two-time NCAA champion has a lot of fans (including LeBron James) but scouts have not been as high on him, seeing him as a solid second string NBA point guard (but one who can step into that role tomorrow). He scores well in isolation or off the pick-and-roll, generally good shooter who can create space, and plays tough defense. The issues are his decision making is far from consistent (remember Andre Drummond and Jeremy Lamb looked pedestrian with Napier) and while his athleticism was enough for college he’s going to find it harder to create room at the NBA level.
25. Houston Rockets: Clint Capela, 6’11” power forward, Switzerland. This is likely a draft and stash pick, which makes sense for Houston as they try to keep their cap space to chase some big game. Capela had a breakout year in the top French league, has good size and is very mobile for a big man, he can finish at the rim and there is a lot of potential at both ends of the court. But he needs to fill out and get stronger, he needs to get much better at reading the game on defense and adding offensive polish.
26. Miami Heat: P.J. Hairston, 6’5” shooting guard, Texas Legends (D-League). He is going to be traded to the Charlotte Hornets for Shabazz Napier and picks, and this is a great pickup for Charlotte. Kicked out of North Carolina Hairston did what more players should do (and will if the age limit gets raised) — used the D-League for development. He can play some minutes right away in the NBA and he gives the Bobcats shooting. He has easy and comfortable three point range and can put the ball on the floor and attack off the bounce, although his catch-and-shoot needs to be more consistent. He struggled with his decision making at the pace of the D-League games and his defense was inconsistent, but he’s been playing at a higher level of competition and that will show (watch for him to have a good Summer League).
27. Phoenix Suns: Bogdan Bogdanovic, 6’6” shooting guard, Serbia. Not to be confused with the Bosnian with the same last name (whose rights belong to the Nets), this is still likely another draft-and-stash candidate (who may not come over, he will get big money offers to stay, more than an NBA rookie deal). He has good size, ball handling skills (he was forced into a point guard role last season and did well), and can shoot out to three. There is a lot of potential here, the questions are his defense and decision making skills remain. Good gamble by Suns.
28. Los Angeles Clippers: C.J. Wilcox, 6’5” shooting guard, Washington. Has the potential to be a three-point specialist in the NBA. He shot 39.1 percent from three last season and hit 43 percent on catch-and-shoot chances. He is one of the best shooters in the draft, plus he can put the ball on the floor. He has an impressive 6’9” wingspan, which will help his otherwise average defense. If he improves on that end of the floor you can see him getting on the court to space the floor at the other end.
29. Oklahoma City Thunder: Josh Huestis, 6’8” small forward, Stanford. He didn’t really standout when asked to lead Stanford on offense, but teams think he could be a good NBA role player. Specifically a defensive stopper — he is athletic, a smart defender and shows real pride on that end of the court. He was all over Wiggins in the NCAA Tournament. He shot 34 percent from three last season and that’s his key — he can be a “3 and D” guy if he develops the three. With the Thunder is the perfect place for a young player to develop.
30. San Antonio Spurs: Kyle Anderson, 6’8” small forward, UCLA. He played basically a point-forward position for UCLA and was their primary ball handler — he has fantastic passing skills and floor vision. That should fit in well with the Spurs. While he shot 48 percent from three last season he has a slow release and took most of his shots off the bounce and there are questions about how he adapts at the next level. One big concern is he’s going to struggle to defend his opposite number. However, if one guy should fit in with the Spurs it is Anderson.
31. Milwaukee Bucks: Damien Inglis, 6’8” small forward, French Guiana. Good second round pick for the Bucks. He has a great NBA build for the three — 6’8” at 240 pounds with 7’3” wingspan. He has good ball handling skills, is a good passer (when not turning it over) and is strong in transition. More impressive is his defense, he can cover the three and the four. His jumper has looked good in the French League but not so much when brought over to American workouts. A draft and stash guy, he’s the second youngest player in the draft and could develop into a player.
32. Philadelphia 76ers: K.J. McDaniels, 6’6” small forward, Clemson. He is long (6’11” wingspan) and that helps him generate steals on defense, which is the end of the floor getting him drafted. He’s very athletic and can guard the 1-3, which is something coaches like. He can hit an open jumper if he sets his feet, but he can’t create his own shot and gets most of his points off hustle — running in transition, hitting the offensive boards, and with that getting to the line.
33. Cleveland Cavaliers: Joe Harris, 6’6” swingman, Virginia. He’s a shooter and his NBA niche is floor spacing from the wing. He shot 40 percent from three his senior year and was knocking down the catch-and-shoot with the best of them at the draft combine. He works hard off the ball to get open and he can pump fake and drive if the defense is there, plus he has nice passing skills. But he is limited athletically, especially considering who he would match up with on the wing in the NBA. The question is if he can defend well enough to stay on the floor and get shots.
34. New York Knicks: Cleanthony Early, 6’7” forward, Wichita State. He can flat out score and do it efficiently, whether inside from the post if you put someone smaller on him, or he can shoot the jumper (37.6 percent from three) if someone larger is on him. If Carmelo Anthony leaves this guy is going to get a lot of shots. The question is how he adjusts to the NBA size — in college he got mismatches at the four most of the time, but in the NBA he will have to play quicker, longer guys at the three. Defense is going to be a concern, can he adjust to that at the NBA level? At age 23 (one of the older players in the draft) there are questions about how much more he can and will improve.
35. Utah Jazz: Jarnell Stokes, 6’8” power forward, Tennessee. He’s going to Memphis in a trade, and he will fit in there. He’s old school and brings the power to the power forward position. His most translatable skill is rebounding — he uses his strength to clear out space on both ends of the court and just out works guys. He has a good touch in the paint. He is not as explosive as the guys he’ll have to defend. On the other end of the court he needs to develop a midrange shot.
36. Milwaukee Bucks: Johnny O’Bryant, 6’8” power forward/center, LSU. When he’s being aggressive he can put up points, either from the post or knocking down midrange jumpers. He is physically strong and can defend on the block. The issue here has been conditioning and focus on the court, he showed more of that last season and the Bucks are betting he can make the next leap. He has the physical tools to play in the NBA, it’s the mental side he has to prove. Could be part of an interesting front court rotation in Milwaukee.
37. Toronto Raptors: DeAndre Daniels, 6’8” small forward, Connecticut. Highly recruited out of high school, he started to show some of that promise last season — he saved his best for the NCAA Tournament and the Huskies title run. He is long and athletic, and he is a good shooter from the perimeter (42 percent from three this past season). He can catch-and-shoot or go up off the bounce. Not great handles, he doesn’t really create shots (and can sometimes chooses bad ones), and he’s an average defender. But there is potential here.
38. Detroit Pistons: Spencer Dinwiddie, 6’6” shooting guard, Colorado. He tore his ACL during his senior season at Colorado which caused him to fall to the second round, where he is a good pick. Because of injury it could be a while before he gets on the court. When he was playing he was really more of the ball dominating guard who can get into the lane, finish or draw contact. He is a solid passer but not a classic playmaker. He’s not a great defender but not terrible. It may take a couple of years, but he could be a quality rotation guard in the league.
39. Philadelphia 76ers: Jerami Grant, 6’8” small forward, Syracuse. Really good second round pick, especially for uptempo Sixers. He is as athletic as anyone in this draft and he is long (7’2” wingspan). He also is raw. He can finish inside but get him outside 10 feet and his jumper is inconsistent (although somewhat improved). Kind of the same thing on defense, his athleticism on defense leads him to make plays and show potential, but he needs work on reading the game.
40. Minnesota Timberwolves: Glenn Robinson, 6’7” small forward, Michigan. Yes, he is the son of former No. 1 pick Big Dog Robinson. He is aggressive going to the rim but got most of his touches working off the ball — he looked good with Trey Burke setting him up two years ago but struggled to create his own shot this year. He can score within 15 feet but his jumper needs to be more consistent and show range (30.6 percent from three). He’s an okay but not thrilling defender.
41. Denver Nuggets: Nikola Jokic, 6’11” center, Serbia. He plays a very high IQ game with a great feel for when to shoot and when to pass. He has an unconventional game but one that could find a home in the NBA at some point. For now he’s a draft and stash guy.
42. Houston Rockets: Nick Johnson, 6’3” shooting guard, Arizona. The Pac-12 player of the year. He’s athletic, competitive, backs down from nobody. He’s not a guy who should do a lot of shot creating for himself and others (he struggled some with a larger offensive load this past season), but working off the ball he can make plays and shoot (36.7 per cent from three last season). He fell this far because is he is very undersized at the two.
43. Atlanta Hawks: Walter Tavares, 7’3” center, Cape Verde. To answer your first question, Cape Verde is an island off the coast of Senegal that is its own nation. Tavares has NBA size and shown good shot blocking and rebounding skills playing in the Spanish ABC league, but he is raw and somewhat new to the game. His offensive game needs a lot of polish still. He’s relatively new to the game and learning, expect this to be a draft and stash and see if he can develop in Spain for a few years.
44. Minnesota Timberwolves: Markel Brown, 6’3” shooting guard, Oklahoma State. He’s the $1 million man — the Brooklyn Nets bought his rights on draft night for that sum. Marcus Smart’s backcourt running mate, he’s a fantastic athlete but a guy who is undersized for the two at the NBA level. In college he could work off the ball and hit contested shots, that will get harder with the NBA level. He’s going to need to spread the floor and knock down shots to stick in the NBA.
45. Charlotte Hornets: Dwight Powell, 6’11” power forward, Stanford. He’s a good athlete for his size, which intrigued teams. He’s versatile, able to score in the post with a jump hook or facing up on the perimeter. That said, to really stick in the NBA that jumper is going to have to fall a lot more than the 25 percent it did from three last season. His jumper in general needs to be more consistent.
46. Washington Wizards: Jordan Clarkson, 6’5” combo guard, Missouri. He is being traded to the Los Angeles Lakers. He can play either guard spot but even at the two he’s really going to be a guy who wants the ball in his hands and to drive and create. Mostly create for himself. He needs to improve his jumper (25 percent on catch-and-shoots last season, 28.1 percent from three overall). His decision making is up and down (he doesn’t have the athleticism to get himself out of trouble with that at the NBA level) and his defense is okay but his effort is in and out at that end.
47. Philadelphia 76ers: Russ Smith, 6’1” point guard, Louisville. He is being traded to the New Orleans Pelicans for Pierre Jackson. Smith had a fantastic and fun college career, but he helped his draft stock more by making fewer wild plays and maturing his game his senior year. He showed a more consistent outside shot, hitting 39 percent from three. His greatest asset is fantastic speed, which he has used to create for himself but he can create more for others. He’s a good defender. The concerns are he’s small for a point guard and he still makes some odd decisions, which could keep him off the court.
48. Milwaukee Bucks: Lamar Patterson, 6’5” shooting guard, Pittsburgh. This could be a nice pick, a good second round gamble. He’s a two guard whose best skill may be passing — he has a great feel for the game and vision of the court. He also shot 38.8 percent from three last season. He plays a smart game. The reason he’s still around is his athleticism — he’s average for the college level, and the levels are about to crank up a few notches (particularly at the two).
49. Chicago Bulls: Cameron Bairstow, 6’10” power forward/center, New Mexico (via Australia). He averaged 20.4 points a game for the Lobos last season and more impressively did it with an efficient 61.1 true shooting percentage. He is a very good midrange jump shooter. He’s not terribly athletic which leads to questions about how his game adapts and how well he defends at the next level.
50. Phoenix Suns: Alec Brown, 7’1” center, Wisconsin Green Bay. He turned heads at the NBA Draft combine, not just because of his hight but he hit 18-of-25 from three. He’s a good second round gamble as a big who can stretch the floor. However, he is not athletic for the NBA level and whether he can adjust and still play his game (as well as defend) is the question.
51. New York Knicks: Thanasis Antetokounmpo, 6’6” small forward, Delaware 87ers, via Greece. They will love him in New York. Yes, he is the older brother of the Greek Freak Giannis Antetokounmpo. Like his brother Thanasis is very athletic and very raw. He brings a real energy to the game but put up pretty average D-League numbers and needs more time to develop. If he can develop a more consistent shot and bring his energy to defense he can make waves in the NBA.
52. Philadelphia 76ers: Vasilije Micic, 6’6” point guard, Serbia. He’s a big point guard and one with court vision, one who works particularly well in transition or the pick-and-roll when he can use his size to get into the lane and finish or find his open teammate. He turned the ball over a lot (23 percent of his used possessions), his jump shot is not near where it needs to be, and there are questions about his ability to defend other, quicker point guards. Still, not a bad gamble.
53. Minnesota Timberwolves: Alessandro Gentile, 6’6” swingman, Italy. The 21 year old has been playing at high levels internationally since he was 17. The guy is just a scorer and he has good size. What teams question is his athleticism — it’s not at an NBA level and teams are not sure he can adjust.
54. Philadelphia 76ers: Nemanja Dangubic, 6’8” shooting guard, Serbia. He will be stashed overseas for a while. He’s not much of a shot creator but can athletic and works off the ball. Needs to get stronger, needs to work on his shop. Teams got a good look at him at Adidas EuroCamp this past year, where he was MVP.
55. Miami Heat: Semaj Christon, 6’3” point guard, Xavier. He is going to Charlotte as part of the trade that got the Heat Shabazz Napier. Christon has good size for an NBA point guard (he can play combo) and plays hard at both ends of the floor. He’s unselfish. His problem is he doesn’t have much of a jump shot (although it improved as he hit 38.8 percent from three last season although he doesn’t take a lot of them) and isn’t efficient when he drives and tries to finish.
56. Orlando Magic: Devyn Marble, 6’6” shooting guard, Iowa. In theory he’s a catch-and-shoot guy at the NBA level, but he only hit 35 percent from three this past season. That has to improve. He can put the ball on the floor and tends to make good decisions when he does. He’s up and down defensively. A bit of a gamble but that’s what the late second round is for.
57. Indiana Pacers: Louis Labeyrie, 6’10” power forward/center, France. This pick will go to the New York Knicks via trade. He’s a classic big European stretch four. He’ll be stashed overseas.
58. San Antonio Spurs: Jordan McRae, 6’5” shooting guard, Tennessee. He has been moved to the Sixers in a trade. He is long, with a 7’0” wingspan, and he is a good athlete. He shot 34 percent from three last season and is really one of those guys who just seems to find ways to score. He can pass, has a good feel for the game. The questions are is he physically strong enough and is he athletic enough for the NBA.
59. Toronto Raptors: Xavier Thames, 6’3” shooting guard, San Diego State. He has been moved to the Brooklyn Nets in a trade. He was a scorer for San Diego State but there are questions about if he is athletic enough to create at the next level (in one big workout his three pointer wasn’t falling, so he put it on the floor and took contested midrange shots). Maybe he can adjust, the Nets are taking a flyer on it.
60. San Antonio Spurs: Corey Jefferson, 6’9” power forward, Baylor. He also has been traded to the Brooklyn Nets. Normally we like to write off “Mr. Irrelevant” but remember Kings PG Isaiah Thomas was pick 60th and turns out he can play and is about to get paid as a restricted free agent. Jefferson will try to follow that path.
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