Mock Draft 3.0
1. Phoenix Suns- Luka Doncic, Guard, Slovenia The Phoenix Suns hold the most prestigious pick in the 2018 NBA draft and with this selection, the Suns decide to pick the pro-ready Luka Doncic over the likes of DeAndre Ayton and Jaren Jackson. Devin Booker no longer has to take control of the offense single-handedly, as Luka Doncic can step in right away as a point-guard.
2. Sacramento Kings- DeAndre Ayton, Big, Arizona The Sacramento Kings decide to pick the best player available in DeAndre Ayton. Sacramento has to hit on this draft pick as they likely will not have their own draft pick next season. Ayton would usually go number one in an ordinary draft cycle. But this year is different, a good different.
3. Atlanta Hawks- Marvin Bagley, Big, Duke The Atlanta Hawks pick the offensive center to go pair with John Collins, their defensive centerpiece. Bagley and Collins should play off of each other very nicely, and Bagley is a mixture of best player available, and best player at a need.
4. Memphis Grizzles- Jaren Jackson, Big, Michigan State The Memphis Grizzlies might end up trading this pick for salary relief or another star, but the smart decision would be to keep this draft pick and select a high profile player. Jaren Jackson is a versatile defensive monster who has the ability to stretch the floor and help his team in numerous ways.
5. Dallas Mavericks- Mohammed Bamba, Big, Texas The Dallas Mavericks have been looking for a franchise center for the longest time. It started with DeAndre Jordan, and we all know how that turned out. Bamba measured in at the combine with a 7'10" wingspan. He has the physical tools to contribute right away and the developmental traits that could help him become one of the best defensive centers in the NBA.
6. Orlando Magic- Trae Young, Guard, Oklahoma Trae Young is a risk. A huge risk. He could be the next Steph Curry or the next Jimmer Fredette. Either way, his shooting and passing ability make him a tantalizing option for any team this early in the draft. Young, Isaac, Gordon and Fournier could be a nice, solid, young core.
7. LA Clippers (From Trade)- Michael Porter, Forward, Missouri Wait? What? The Clippers trade up to grab a player that they basically already have. That's right. My pro comparison for Michael Porter is, ironically, Tobias Harris. Porter will have to play the four spot for whichever team he plays for due to his speed and acceleration. However, I am basing this draft on what I think will happen, not what I would do. So, that being said, the Clippers moving up for Porter seems inevitable at this point given how aggressive the front office has been in regards to trading for and away players.
8. Cleveland Cavaliers- Wendell Carter, Big, Duke This is the dream scenario for the Cavs. Sure, Trae Young and Michael Porter are gone, but the Cavs get a player better than both in Wendell Carter. He could provide a nice defensive presence soon in his career and has the ability to stretch the floor. He plays with shades of Al Horford. Not everything Carter does will show up on the stat sheet, but he will be an NBA nerd's best friend.
9. New York Knicks- Mikal Bridges, Wing, Villanova The Knicks need shooting and a lot of it. While New York has been linked to numerous point-guards, Bridges might be too good to pass on with the ninth overall pick.
10. Philadelphia 76ers- Miles Bridges, Forward, Michigan State Philadelphia adds a rotational forward with this pick. Bridges will likely come off the bench as an all-around spark. Philly is probably going to lose Ilyasova and Belinelli, so improving their bench should be one of their main focuses in the draft.
11. Charlotte Hornets- Zhaire Smith, Guard, Texas Tech The Hornets draft a high upside guard with the physical tools to help contribute right away. Smith is one of the most athletically gifted athletes in this draft, and to let him fall outside of the lottery would be a crime. Charlotte is investing in the future with this pick.
12. Chicago Bulls (From Trade)- Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Guard, Kentucky The Chicago Bulls traded down and decided that they would rather take their chances with two prospects instead of one. SGA is a defensive guard who has the fluidity and ability to get buckets in the paint. His shooting can improve, but all in all, this would be one of the more intriguing picks in the draft.
13. Chicago Bulls (From Trade)- Robert Williams, Big, Texas A&M The Bulls put their money on another SEC prospect in Robert Williams. The defensive center has drawn some comparisons to DeAndre Jordan, but that is probably his ceiling. Williams has the potential to be a good starter for the Bulls and pairing him with Markkanen could work well for both players.
14. Denver Nuggets- Collin Sexton, Guard, Alabama What about Will Barton though? Barton is set to hit free agency, and the Nuggets will need another rotational piece to put in the backcourt. With Sexton falling this far, it would be very hard for Denver to pass on him, especially with the talent drop off outside of the lottery.
15. Washington Wizards- Jontay Porter, Big, Missouri
16- Miami Heat (From Trade)- Troy Brown, Wing, Oregon
17. Milwaukee Bucks- Mitchell Robinson, Big, USA
18. San Antonio Spurs- Dzanan Musa, Wing, Bosnia and Herzegovina
19. Atlanta Hawks- Khyri Thomas, Guard, Creighton
20. Minnesota Timberwolves- Lonnie Walker, Guard, Miami
21. Utah Jazz- Kevin Knox, Forward, Kentucky
22. Chicago Bulls- Chandler Hutchison, Wing, Boise State
23. Indiana Pacers- Keita Bates-Diop, Wing, Ohio State
24. Portland Trailblazers- De'Anthony Melton, Guard, Southern California
25. Los Angeles Lakers- Chimezie Metu, Big, Southern California
26. Philadelphia 76ers- Elie Okobo, Guard, France
27. Boston Celtics- Brandon McCoy, Big, UNLV
28. Golden State Warriors- Malik Newman, Guard, Kansas
29. Brooklyn Nets- Jacob Evans, Wing, Cincinnati
30. Atlanta Hawks- Afernee Simons, Guard, USA
Trades: Los Angeles Clippers receive: Michael Porter Jr. (7th overall pick) Chicago Bulls receive: Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Robert Williams (12th and 13th picks)
Miami Heat receive: Troy Brown (16th overall pick), future first round pick (lottery protected 2019-2020, turns to two second-round picks if still with Phoenix) Pheonix Suns receive: Hassan Whiteside