2018 NBA Draft Profile: Michael Porter Jr.
Position: Small Forward/Power Forward
Measurables: 6’10, 211 pounds (7’ foot wingspan)
Age: 19 (June 29th, 1998)
Michael Porter Jr. may be the most fascinating player in the draft. A year ago, Porter was five-star recruit and the McDonald's All-American game MVP. His high school accolades included being named Mr. Basketball USA, USA Today Player of the Year, Gatorade Player of the Year, and Naismith Prep Player of the Year.
Before Porter committed to play at Missouri with his brother and under his father who’s an assistant coach on the staff, he was as likely a first overall pick candidate as any of the other players in the impending draft class
A lot has changed over the course of the year.
A back injury that occured two minutes into his first collegiate game limited Porter to just three games in his entire career. Due to the injury, his draft stock has fallen just a bit. No longer is Porter considered a consensus top three pick.
However, Porter is still a lock to be a top 10 selection in the draft and by all reports his back injury is fully healed and he's 100% healthy. Of course, the best prediction for future injury is prior injuries and back surgeries are nothing to brush off. This will cause teams to pass up on his insane potential to one day dominate the league.
Three collegiate games. The last two in the SEC Tournament and the NCAA Tournament, Porter struggled immensely as he was clearly rusty from the five months off due to injury and not playing at the collegiate level. NBA scouts are basing his draft position and his ability with private workouts. Porter did not go through drills at the NBA Combine.
4th overall to 10th overall.
Porter is still a top 10 selection in the draft. The Memphis Grizzlies could use a player with his upside at the fourth pick but their roster is already filled with injury prone players (Mike Conley, Chandler Parsons) which might scare them to go in a different direction. There’s a zero percent chance Porter falls out of the top 10 if he made it to the Philadelphia 76ers who are picking at that spot. His draft range is fairly steady.
Porter goes fifth overall to the Dallas Mavericks. Reports out of Mavericks camp were that Dallas was “extremely impressed” with Porter calling him a top three selection if healthy. If the training staff and front office are good with the medical reports, Porter will be a tough pass for Mavericks Owner Mark Cuban.