OTG's 2016 NBA Redraft
Updated: Jun 27
A few of us here at OTG got together and did a redraft of the 2016 NBA Draft. We all know how the real thing went but how should it have actually gone? Let’s take a look.
1 – Philadelphia 76ers (Alec Liebsch)
Actual Pick: Ben Simmons
Re-Draft Pick: Ben Simmons
The 2016 Draft wasn’t supposed to be a deep one, but time has told a different story. A lot of guys could’ve been argued with the No. 1 slot in retrospect. But even though the gap has closed, Ben Simmons is still the guy. His blend of size, skill, IQ and athleticism is very rare, almost otherworldly. A lack of a jump shot caps his ceiling, but where he’s gotten without one is very much worth the pick here.
2 – Los Angeles Lakers (Ollie Nash)
Actual Pick: Brandon Ingram (Falls)
Re-Draft: Pascal Siakam
Originally pick 27 to Toronto, Siakam has been one of the most improved players in the league in the last two seasons. Before the pandemic, he was able to lead the Raptors to a 46-18 record and the two seed in the Eastern Conference without Kawhi Leonard, which many didn’t think he could do. It would have been cool to see him alongside LeBron James if he could have stayed on the roster and avoided being a part of the New Orleans trade.
3 – Boston Celtics (Marquist Parker)
Actual Pick: Jaylen Brown
Re-Draft: Jaylen Brown
This one isn’t complicated. Brown has been everything the Celtics could have possibly asked for and more. His rapid improvement year to year has been a marvel to watch, and I believe Boston has a future All-NBA player in Jaylen Brown.
4 – Phoenix Suns (Khaleel Abdullah)
Actual Pick: Dragan Bender (Falls)
Re-Draft: Jamal Murray
I really hope Dragan Bender figures it out one day but this was such a whiff by the Suns. Granted, they didn’t need a point guard at the time but in retrospect, Jamal would have been an amazing pick here. Murray and Booker in the backcourt would be so much fun and would have prevented such a headache. He’s a young rising star, helping the Nuggets be one of the best teams in the West. Imagine Jamal and Devin running side by side.
5 – Minnesota Timberwolves (Charles Allen)
Actual Pick: Kris Dunn (Falls)
Re-Draft: Brandon Ingram
While I’m not quite set on the fit here, it’s hard to pass on Ingram. He’s gotten better every season and at 22 years old averaged 24.3 points per game. His rookie year he could’ve slid in at power forward possibly to join Ricky Rubio, Zach LaVine, Andrew Wiggins and Karl-Anthony Towns for a pretty fun starting five. The Wolves could have a legit young trio of him, D'Angelo Russell and KAT right now.
6 – New Orleans Pelicans (Chandler Harper)
Actual Pick: Buddy Hield
Re-Draft: Buddy Hield
Buddy Hield will slot perfectly in between Jrue Holiday and Anthony Davis. This time the plan is keeping him and allowing him to develop.
7 – Denver Nuggets (Dan Campbell)
Actual Pick: Jamal Murray (Off the Board)
Re-Draft: Malcolm Brogdon
With Jamal being selected at No. 4 by the Suns in this re-draft, Denver needed another guard to replace his minutes in the backcourt. Brogdon’s elite efficiency and ability to defend both guard positions make him an easy fit on this playoff team. Originally falling to 36th overall, Malcolm has developed into one of the biggest steals of the 2016 NBA Draft and is someone the Nuggets would be happy to take at No. 7 this time around.
8 – Phoenix Suns (Khaleel Abdullah)
Actual Draft: Marquese Chriss (Falls)
Re-Draft: Domantas Sabonis
The Suns really blew this draft as they had so much of an opportunity to really lay a solid foundation here. As I said about Bender, I will say the same in Chriss in that I hope he figures it out. However, Phoenix could have had Sabonis here who has had a monster season. Actually there’s no doubt the trio of Bender, Chriss and Booker is miles better than Murray, Booker and Sabonis. There’s no question about that. What am I thinking? (Sarcasm, clearly)
9 – Toronto Raptors (Kory Waldron)
Actual Draft: Jakob Poeltl (Falls)
Re-Draft: Caris LeVert
The Toronto Raptors lost out on Pascal Siakam a steal of the draft originally in this re-draft. With this pick, the Raptors took Jakob Poeltl, now Poeltl is important because he was a piece sent to the San Antonio Spurs for Kawhi Leonard. So the future for the Raptors is now drastically changing. The next best young talent on the board is Caris LeVert, LeVert has struggled to stay healthy so far but has shown in several occasions flashes of all-star potential.
10 – Milwaukee Bucks (Nick Boylan)
Actual Draft: Thon Maker (Falls)
Re-Draft: Fred VanVleet
From training-camp invitee to a key member of an NBA Championship-winning Toronto Raptors team, VanVleet has had quite the rise. After an excellent Sixth Man of the Year caliber year in 2019, the 6-1 guard out of Wichita State has continued to see his game rise to new levels in a more prominent role. His shooting (38.8 percent from three-point range on 7.0 attempts per game this season) and stout defense (league leader in deflections with 4.2 per game) would be an excellent fit alongside Giannis Antetokounmpo in Milwaukee.
11 – Oklahoma City Thunder (Nick Boylan)
Actual Draft: Domantas Sabonis (Off the Board)
Re-Draft: Malik Beasley
Getting more shooters around Russell Westbrook in OKC began to sound like a broken record, especially after Kevin Durant joined Golden State and took with him even more spacing. Spacing is crucial for Westbrook to operate at his best. Thankfully, a shooter’s available at No. 11, in Malik Beasley! After showing glimpses in Denver, Beasley exploded after the deadline move to the Minnesota Timberwolves. In a starting role, Beasley averaged 20.7 points on 42.6 percent shooting from three-point land in 14 games. With a 59.1 percent true shooting percentage over that span, and coming off a 2018-19 campaign that saw him achieve 40.2 percent shooting on three-pointers, the 6-4 guard can certainly catch fire in a hurry. This shooting and microwave scoring would be excellent in a bench or starting role in OKC.
12 – Atlanta Hawks (Kory Waldron)
Actual Draft: Taurean Prince (Falls)
Re-Draft: DeJounte Murray
DeJounte Murray went late in the first round initially, this time around he's a lottery pick. Now, who knows how this changes the future for the Atlanta Hawks but a backcourt of Murray and eventually Trae Young would be dynamite! An elite offensive player paired with an elite defender the Hawks could've had two cornerstone pieces.
13 – Sacramento Kings (Dan Campbell)
Actual Draft: Georgios Papagiannis (Falls)
Re-Draft: Taurean Prince
I really could have pulled a name out of a hat and likely found an upgrade over the actual player drafted at this spot. I selected Prince as the Kings simply need talent and his ability to shoot the 3 while defending both forward positions made him one of the best players available. He ranks 9th in the 2016 draft class in both points scored and rebounds. The Kings will happily take him with this chance at a do-over on the Papagiannis pick.
14 – Chicago Bulls (Chandler Harper)
Actual Draft: Denzel Valentine (Falls)
Re-Draft: Jakob Poeltl
Jakob Poeltl is a very solid overall player. He helps solidify the Chicago Bulls defense and is a good glue player on the offensive end.
15 – Denver Nuggets (Charles Allen)
Actual Draft: Juancho Hernangomez (Falls)
Re-Draft: Dorian Finney-Smith
The Denver Nuggets get my guy in Dorian Finney-Smith, who could be a solid 3-and-D wing off the bench for the Nuggets and would definitely help come playoff time.
16 – Boston Celtics (Marquist Parker)
Actual Draft: Guerschon Yabusele (Falls)
Re-Draft: Ivica Zubac
Boston has struggled to find consistent rebounding help for over 20 years. This pick would have allowed Al Horford to thrive at power forward and would have given Zubac more stability in his early career.
17 – Memphis Grizzlies (Ollie Nash)
Actual Draft: Wade Baldwin (Falls)
Re-Draft: Kris Dunn
The original No. 5 pick in this draft, Dunn isn’t where many thought he would be, but I’m holding out hope. He averaged 12.3 points, 6 assists and 4.2 rebounds in his second and third year with the Bulls. Now they’re not amazing numbers but for a 6-foot-3 point guard still finding his feet, there is plenty to work with there.
18 – Detroit Pistons (Alec Liebsch)
Actual Draft: Henry Ellenson (Falls)
Re-Draft: Bryn Forbes
Around Reggie Jackson and Andre Drummond, you need mainly one thing: shooting. Forbes is a perfect fit for that need, as he has consistently shot at an above-average rate from downtown since entering the NBA. Add in his ability to handle the ball, and you have an off guard that just maybe what Detroit’s doctors ordered.
19 – Denver Nuggets (Dan Campbell)
Actual Draft: Malik Beasley (Off the Board)
Re-Draft: Denzel Valentine
The Denver Nuggets original pick was a steal so he’s gone in this re-draft, forcing me to once again find a replacement. I settled on Valentine, a player who hasn’t quite lived up to his draft hype and fell in our re-draft. He has yet to carve out a reliable role on the struggling Bulls, and I admittedly am higher on him than most after watching the leadership he displayed at Michigan State. Denzel could have developed into a role player as a wing on a playoff team like the Nuggets. He has a career 3P% of 37% (and over 40% from the corners) and is a high-IQ player. Beasley has more upside, but Valentine could have earned minutes and contributed to playoff success sooner.
20 – Brooklyn Nets (Kory Waldron)
Actual Draft: Caris LeVert (Off the Board)
Re-Draft: Alex Caruso
Alex Caruso has to be one of the most beloved role players in the NBA or at the very least by Lakers fans. Caruso is a strong backup guard who can shoot, get to the rim and is a very good defender. In the 2019-2020 season for the Lakers, Caruso has been their second-best defender behind Avery Bradley. While being the fourth-best in the entire NBA, keeping opposing players eFG percentage at just 48%. Caruso may not fill the shoes of Caris LeVert but he can still become a valuable role player.
21 – Atlanta Hawks (Chandler Harper)
Actual Draft: DeAndre Bembry (Falls)
Re-Draft: Danuel House
House helps us lock down a solid role player at the start of the rebuild. He’s got good size and a good shot. We hope he’ll blossom into a starter-level wing.
22 – Sacramento Kings (Charles Allen)
Actual Draft: Malachi Richardson (Falls)
Re-Draft: Furkan Korkmaz
The Kings took Taurean Prince earlier in this re-draft and here take Korkmaz. The shooting would be a strong spot as well at the wing/forward depth. Furkan hasn’t really been able to be unleashed on the Sixers as he’s more a role player but when he gets a chance he can get really hot and on the Kings, he could be showcased so much more.
23 – Boston Celtics (Marquist Parker)
Actual Draft: Ante Zizic (Falls)
Re-Draft: Tyler Ulis
I envision Ulis being a Brad Wanamaker and Shane Larkin type of player in Boston. I believe the scoring ability is there in spurts, and he’d turn into a valuable role player playing in Boston’s stable organization as opposed to Phoenix.
24 – Philadelphia 76ers (Alec Liebsch)
Actual Draft: Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot (Falls)
Re-Draft: Juancho Hernangomez
What do Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid need? You guessed it, shooting. Juancho is the right pick for that role; when he actually got legitimate minutes with Denver (and now Minnesota), he was an elite 3-point shooter. His defensive flaws are less of an issue next to Simmons and Embiid, and his strengths will be amplified.
25 – LA Clippers (Nick Boylan)
Actual Draft: Brice Johnson (Falls)
Re-Draft: Marquese Chriss
One of the latest reclamation projects to happen in Golden State, Marquese Chriss has turned a disappointing five year and three team NBA career into something much more promising! Moving from the power forward role envisaged for him when drafted by Phoenix with the 8th pick, Chriss has thrived as an athletic center on both ends of the floor. For the Warriors, Chriss has averaged 9.3 points on nearly 55 percent shooting from the field, 6.2 rebounds and almost two assists per game. Add in 1.1 blocks per game, while averaging 20.3 minutes, and it’s clear refining Chriss’ role has enabled him to focus on what he does best; bring high energy and verticality on both ends, alongside making the smart pass. Such skills would make him a perfect energy big to bring off the bench for Doc Rivers.
26 – Philadelphia 76ers (Alec Liebsch)
Actual Draft: Furkan Korkmaz (Off the Board)
Re-Draft: Yogi Ferrell
Another need next to Simmons and Embiid is a guard willing to take threes. Yogi has showcased that every year in the NBA; he hit nine treys in a game this season. His best role is probably as a sixth man spark plug, but that’s still a welcome addition next to Philly’s cornerstones.
27 – Toronto Raptors (Khaleel Abdullah)
Actual Draft: Pascal Siakam (Off the Board)
Re-Draft: Derrick Jones Jr.
In the real draft, the Raptors got an absolute steal and he’s long gone by now. Re-drafts aren’t friendly to teams who did well when they actually picked. However, “Airplane Mode” would have the chance to be a fan favorite with his development and high-flying dunks.
28 – Sacramento Kings (Dan Campbell)
Actual Draft: Skal Labissiere (Falls)
Re-Draft: Jake Layman
Adding another shooter in the form of a forward that can provide depth and help in the playoffs isn’t a bad move at the end of the first round. Layman doesn’t pop like some other potential talent but he can contribute.
29 – San Antonio Spurs (Ollie Nash)
Actual Draft: DeJounte Murray (Off the Board)
Re-Draft: Thon Maker
There is so much upside for this guy which explains why he was picked at No. 10 originally in this draft. He has all the makings of the perfect big man for the modern game, as he can pick and pop or roll to the rim, has shown his capabilities from the three in small doses and can defend well enough. He would have learned a lot from LaMarcus Aldridge and Pop on the Spurs.
30 – Golden State Warriors (Nick Boylan)
Actual Draft: Damian Jones (Falls)
Re-Draft: Damion Lee
Golden State ensures that Damion Lee stays in the same colors, with the shooting guard providing handy shooting and scoring for the Warriors in the middle of their dynasty. In an increased role this season, Lee has thrived, averaging 12.7 points on nearly 37 percent shooting from three-point land and 42 percent from the floor. Adept in catch-and-shoot situations, taking mid-range jumpers or getting to the rim, the former G-Leaguer’s scoring versatility is a useful fit coming off the Warriors bench.