Well, it’s September, and we still don’t know exactly when the draft is, but with the pool of eligible players close-to-final and a mostly-virtual combine slated to begin in the coming weeks, it’s an opportune time to update the Big Board. The NBA plans to conduct player medicals and virtual interviews in the first phase of the combine later this month, and hopes to allow teams to conduct interviews in person in October. The target date for the draft itself is now November 18, which allows the league maximum time to iron out the salary cap situation, and gives teams the best circumstances to facilitate trades around the draft and free agency.
This is the first adjustment to the Big Board since May, with just seven of our Top 80 prospects returning to college. There hasn’t been a ton of sweeping change on this board, but most of them are based on intel and added opportunity to watch game film. The rankings stem primarily from my own evaluations of players, but also factor in their projected draft ranges and do not account for team fit.
The latest mock draft projections can be found here.
1. Anthony Edwards, SG, Georgia | Freshman
Height: 6' 5" | Weight: 225 | Age: 19 | Previous Rank: 1
The case for Edwards at No. 1 centers on the likelihood he’ll eventually anchor a team’s offense. He has the tools and skills to do it, and while he made plenty of freshman mistakes in his lone season at Georgia, there were moments of offensive brilliance during which he looked like a potential star. The primary question is whether his decision-making struggles stem simply from inexperience, or if there’s a deeper issue with feel and on-court processing that may hamper his team success if deployed in a high-use capacity. But Edwards played only three years of high school basketball at a small high school before reclassifying, and he consistently flashes the ability to see and complete some impressive passes while going downhill, and the context leaves some room for optimism. While he was at times an uninterested defender, he has the physical capacity to defend opposing ballhandlers late in games, and given how much was asked of him on offense as an 18-year-old freshman it’s hard to hold him to a ridiculous standard on that end. Edwards will require time and patience, but the ceiling here is substantial.
2. LaMelo Ball, PG, Illawarra Hawks
Height: 6' 6" | Weight: 180 | Age: 19 | Previous Rank: 2
Ball isn’t a fit for every team, but his rare combination of size, ball-handling and passing chops make him arguably the draft’s most entertaining player and one with a clear pathway to being a starting point guard. There remains a degree of skepticism in league circles, surrounding his haphazard jump shot as well as his almost overly pronounced showmanship. Bottom line, Ball will have to score efficiently to lead a winning offense in ball-dominant fashion, and the types of shots he favors aren’t statistically the most conducive in that regard. The likelihood he succeeds is bolstered by the fact he clearly loves to play, but the question is how much that style falls in line with winning games, and to what degree he’ll adjust over time. There’s concern about Ball’s defensive impact, but his size and instincts in the passing lanes should at least make him useful within a scheme. Fit here matters, as a team will need to hand him the keys to maximize his value, but the upside validates him as an early pick.
3. James Wiseman, C, Memphis | Freshman
Height: 7' 1" | Weight: 245 | Age: 19 | Previous Rank: 3
As a seven-footer with plus physical tools, an ideal frame, and room for growth in the skill department, Wiseman checks some key boxes that still matter in the NBA, despite the fact all but the best centers have been somewhat devalued. Investing in him as a top-five pick, in essence, requires belief that he ends up in the upper echelon at his position. He played just three games at Memphis before an NCAA suspension led to his eventual exit. Wiseman’s size will almost certainly make him a defensive deterrent in the paint, he’ll run the floor and rebound, and should be competent finishing around the rim. He has potential to shoot but will need to take a huge leap in skill to be worth playing through on offense. Still, there’s an attractive production floor here, and Wiseman is probably going to be a productive, starting-caliber center, if not a franchise-altering star.
4. Tyrese Haliburton, G, Iowa State | Sophomore
Height: 6' 5" | Weight: 175 | Age: 20 | Previous Rank: 4
Although nearly everything about Haliburton’s game is unorthodox, his advanced on-court intellect, winning-conducive skill set and rapid trajectory are noteworthy, and they set him apart in some regard in a lottery where the talent gap between prospects is admittedly narrow. It’s easy to harp on the holes in his game—arduous shooting mechanics, unremarkable explosiveness, and a still-developing handle that could keep him from being a full-time point guard—but there’s a chance that those weaknesses are effectively masked by his savant-like approach to greasing the wheels of an offense. Haliburton doesn’t actually need to be a full-time point guard to wind up as one of the best players in this draft, and at worst, he profiles as a highly usable bench piece on a winning team. His real value lies in what his presence does for everyone else on his team, as a ball-moving facilitator who hits open threes and can augment any lineup.
5. Obi Toppin, F/C, Dayton | Sophomore
Height: 6' 9" | Weight: 220 | Age: 22 | Previous Rank: 10
Toppin’s stock has risen to the point where he’s essentially a lock to go top-five, and he’s viewed as more of a sure thing in a relatively thin lottery class, with some teams willing to overlook his age and prioritize the here-and-now offensive contributions. Keeping perspective here is important—Toppin needs to add lower body strength and doesn’t move all that well laterally, which may eventually lead to him getting hunted on defense. He’s going to be more of a face-up big than low-post scorer, and his continued ability to hit corner threes and finish at a good clip is essential to his long-term success. Toppin is probably best off at power forward alongside a defensive-minded big. But there’s a good chance he’s ready to contribute immediately, and if everything translates, he could certainly justify an early pick.
6. Isaac Okoro, SF, Auburn | Freshman
Height: 6' 6" | Weight: 225 | Age: 19 | Previous Rank: 6
Okoro can be polarizing because he’s a below-average shooter, but the rest of his skill set is pretty convincing. He’ll be able to hang his hat on defense immediately, with a great combination of strength, balance and agility that should enable him to keep up with the league’s top perimeter scorers. He’s a powerful athlete with a quality feel for decision-making and passing, and doesn’t need a heavy diet of shots to impact the game. Okoro’s jumper isn’t broken, but he’s far enough off as a shooter to give teams pause. He’s very good finishing at the rim, but if he can’t make enough threes to keep defenses honest and set up drives, it’s hard to see him returning top-five value. Still, Okoro’s impeccable functional athleticism and defensive acumen create a strong base and make him worth the gamble.
7. Killian Hayes, PG, Ratiopharm Ulm
Height: 6' 5" | Weight: 195 | Age: 19 | Previous Rank: 5
After taking a huge leap this season as a full-time point guard in Germany, Hayes will be a lottery selection thanks to his advanced decision-making skills and improving all-around game. Questions about his jump shot and average athletic ability have suppressed his stock to an extent, but he’s a crafty scorer and intelligent player with a degree of on-court self-awareness, which has helped his professional success at a young age. His positional size and impressive footwork allow him to change speeds effectively, and point to real room for growth as he adds strength and continues to hone his shooting. Teams in need of a lead guard should be able to place a premium on Hayes’ strengths and bet on the upside, but he’s still likely a couple years from making serious contributions to a winning team.
8. Onyeka Okongwu, C, USC | Freshman
Height: 6' 9" | Weight: 245 | Age: 19 | Previous Rank: 8
Okongwu is ready to help an NBA team right now from a defensive standpoint, and teams generally view him as a winning player, thanks to a strong understanding of his role and willingness to do the dirty work inside. He runs the floor well, covers ground defensively, and was consistent all season for a USC team that sorely needed it. Okongwu lacks elite size and length for his position, but that should matter less as the league trends toward smaller lineups. Taking him early in the draft requires belief that he’ll continue to add to his offensive skill set, whether it’s as an interior playmaker or floor-spacer. Still, Okongwu’s productivity and the fact that he doesn’t need his number called to impact a game should make him a valuable supporting piece, particularly for teams that already feature ball-dominant scorers.
9. Deni Avdija, F, Maccabi Tel Aviv
Height: 6' 8" | Weight: 210 | Age: 19 | Previous Rank: 7
At this point, Avdija is almost certain to be the first international player drafted, with an intriguing base skill set for a combo forward and impressive playmaking vision that helps set him apart from his peers. There are questions surrounding what he’ll be able to do at an NBA level right away based on his role this season, which hinged on his ability to make threes and make plays in transition. Improving his jumper and handle to become more of a threat off the dribble will be important. Teams are intrigued by Avdija’s potential to run pick and roll long-term at his size, and thanks to his passing ability there’s a pathway for him to be pretty useful, particularly if he figures out how to survive defensively. But there’s also a chance Avdija ends up as just an average shooter and gets targeted on the other end of the floor, which would be limiting long-term.
10. Devin Vassell, SF, Florida State | Sophomore
Height: 6' 7" | Weight: 195 | Age: 20 | Previous Rank: 11
Vassell should be able to help his next team in relatively quick fashion, as a quality defender and three-point shooter who doesn’t need heavy touches to be effective. Wings in his mold are in high demand, and although his upside might be limited by his lack of explosiveness and struggles to create shots for himself, Vassell brings enough to the table already that it’s relatively easy to pencil him in as a valuable longtime role player at worst. He has a knack for blowing up plays and taking away passing lanes and will be able to keep defenses honest and space the floor with the threat of his jumper. He only turned 20 in August, which leaves some extra room for development. Vassell won’t be the biggest upside play in the back half of the lottery but makes sense on any roster as a useful rotation piece and potential long-term starter.
11. Patrick Williams, F, Florida State | Freshman
Height: 6' 8" | Weight: 225 | Age: 19 | Previous Rank: 12
Williams has as much upside as most of the other players in the lottery, with a great frame and base set of skills that should add versatility on both ends of the floor. He’s not ready for major minutes, and a lot of his value involves projection, but as the youngest college player in the draft, it’s easy to take an optimistic tack, so long as a team can afford him time to develop. He’ll hold up fine defensively with his body type and mobility and should be able to guard slower wings as well smaller bigs. Williams’ offensive future is a bit less clear and tied to how well his handle develops, but he’s shown encouraging signs as a shooter and has enough feel to fit in without issue. For a team that doesn’t need its first-round pick to play immediately, he looks like a worthy project and easy lottery option.
12. Kira Lewis Jr., PG, Alabama | Sophomore
Height: 6' 3" | Weight: 170 | Age: 19 | Last Rank: 15
Lewis made nice strides this season in a favorable offensive system at Alabama, which allowed him to showcase his blazing speed and kick the ball out to willing shooters. As a young sophomore, it was the type of leap he needed to solidify himself as a top-20 prospect, and there’s a chance he sneaks into the back part of the lottery based on upside. Lewis is slight of build and still learning how to run a team, but he’s already a good shooter and can put a lot of pressure on defenses in transition. He may get picked on a bit defensively, and there will be a learning curve as the game speeds up around him and he learns to attack set defenses, but his long-term potential is attractive, and sets him apart from the other guards in this range.
13. Saddiq Bey, F, Villanova | Sophomore
Height: 6' 8" | Weight: 215 | Age: 21 | Last Rank: 21
This is the high end of Bey’s range, but his appealing floor as a useful role player gives him a boost here, with teams constantly in search of wing-sized bodies who can contribute defensively and make shots. Bey is big and skilled enough to play either forward spot and took a big leap forward this season at Villanova, a program that has consistently churned out useful NBA players. His 45% three-point clip is unsustainable, but he made legitimate strides as a shooter and makes good decisions with the ball. Bey isn’t very dynamic off the dribble, nor is he extremely explosive, which probably limits him to role duty. But as an active team defender and trustworthy, mature player, he should be able to contribute early and deliver value in this range, with starting-caliber upside.
14. Precious Achiuwa, F/C, Memphis | Freshman
Height: 6' 9" | Weight: 225 | Age: 20 | Last Rank: 23
Achiuwa certainly looks the part in terms of tools and athletic ability, and while there are doubts about his overall feel, teams are enticed by his productivity, and there’s a pretty good chance he ends up in the lottery. He’s not a natural perimeter player, but the simple solution seems to be playing him in a lower-leverage role at center, at least to start, and asking him to run the floor, rebound, and cover the middle defensively. Achiuwa has always been a little too interested in moonlighting as a wing, but if he’s willing to buy in as a full-time big, it’s much easier to see him succeeding long-term. He’ll have to work hard on his jumper, but there’s a chance he shoots it effectively, which would add some versatility. Achiuwa is still mistake-prone on both ends, and he turns 21 this week. But with the NBA trending smaller, it isn’t hard to see him fitting in as a useful rotation player in the right situation.
15. Tyrese Maxey, SG, Kentucky | Freshman
Height: 6' 3" | Weight: 200 | Age: 19 | Previous Rank: 9
Maxey’s stock dropped a bit after a statistically unimpressive season, and he was among the higher-profile players who really could have used a strong postseason run to help his stock. But the hope here is that his value is greater than the sum of his parts, and that his toughness and confidence will help cover for some of the holes in his game. He shot the ball poorly from outside at Kentucky, but that should improve to an extent. Although he’s more of an undersized two-guard than true combo, Maxey has some appealing craftiness as a scorer and the tools to be a useful defender at either guard spot. He’ll need to hone his game away from the ball, but provided that happens, he should be a useful third guard who can defend and create shots.
16. Aaron Nesmith, G/F, Vanderbilt | Sophomore
Height: 6' 6" | Weight: 215 | Age: 20 | Last Rank: 16
Nesmith’s season was cut short by a foot fracture, but he did put together a pretty convincing 14 games, in which he hit a remarkable 52% of his threes on 115 attempts. He’s one of the better pure shot-makers in the draft, can attack a closeout fairly well and is competent if not jaw-dropping from an athletic perspective. If Nesmith’s shooting plays up in an elite capacity, which it could, the rest of his game should accessorize that skill pretty well, and he has a chance to at least be an average defender thanks to his solid frame. His ability to catch and shoot under duress and off movement is a pretty rare, and capable floor spacing tends to come at a premium. Nesmith may be a little too one-note to warrant an early pick for some, but there’s a real chance his shooting prowess gets him picked in the lottery.
17. Cole Anthony, PG, North Carolina | Freshman
Height: 6' 3" | Weight: 190 | Age: 20 | Previous Rank: 13
Scouts widely cooled on Anthony after a rough college season, and although he was considered one of the top players in the country in high school, his struggles seem likely to land him somewhere in this part of the draft. He didn’t have much help at North Carolina, but also struggled to elevate the players around him. And while it’s unfair to heap all the blame on him, it points to the concerns many have about his decision-making under pressure and his tendency to hunt shots. Anthony didn’t get to the rim enough, nor did he make the most of those opportunities, and he was streaky from three-point range, creating an inefficient shot profile that’s difficult to sell in the lottery. He’ll surely be more effective at full health and with additional room to operate, and the question is simply to what extent. If Anthony is willing to adjust his tendencies moving forward, he’s talented enough to succeed.
18. Leandro Bolmaro, G, Barcelona
Height: 6' 6" | Weight: 180 | Age: 20 | Last Rank: 20
Bolmaro’s size, toughness, and inventive playmaking give him intriguing upside, but he’s somewhat divisive among teams given his lack of experience at high levels and concerns about his below-average shooting. He’s already begun his season at Barcelona, where he’s joined the senior team full-time, and whoever drafts him will have the option either to keep him overseas next season or pay his buyout clause and bring him over. Some scouts see Bolmaro as an obvious first-round talent, while others are more hesitant given the limited evaluation sample and his struggles putting pressure on the rim. But big guards with his skill set and IQ aren’t easy to find, and the ability to stash him for a year should help. This is the high end of his range, but it’s likely he ends up in the back half of the first round.
19. Théo Maledon, G, ASVEL Basket
Height: 6' 4" | Weight: 175 | Age: 19 | Last Rank: 14
After entering the year as a possible top-10 selection, Maledon’s stock ran aground amid a rocky season hampered by injuries and an inconsistent role. He still projects as a useful jack-of-all-trades combo guard but lacks one elite skill to hang his hat on at this stage. Maledon is a good shooter, plus athlete, and should be able to hold his own defensively. Although he lacks some dynamism off the dribble, he should do enough to fit into a rotation in some capacity. He’s also universally regarded as a hard worker with strong intangibles, and it’s hard to see him falling too much further than this. His upside is tied more to his own desire to improve than anything else, and he checks enough boxes to draft him with some confidence in this range.
20. Tyrell Terry, G, Stanford | Freshman
Height: 6' 2" | Weight: 160 | Age: 19 | Last Rank: 17
Guards like Seth Curry and Landry Shamet make positive impacts in the playoffs points to a future role for Terry, who has work to do to become a truly elite shooter but has the right set of skills to play that type of role long-term. His compact release and feel for moving the ball around the perimeter made him dangerous right away at Stanford, and he finished well around the rim, particularly for a guy his size. Terry has to improve playing off the bounce and continue adding strength, but it’s hard to discount his smarts and shooting potential. His size will likely be an obstacle on defense, but he has plenty of other things working in his favor. Though he may need a year to develop and get stronger, Terry has a clear path to becoming a high-end role player if things break correctly.
21. Aleksej Pokusevski, F, Olympiacos
Height: 7' 0" | Weight: 200 | Age: 18 | Last Rank: 22
Oftentimes the “mystery man” designation feels cliché and unhelpful; Pokusevski wears it particularly well. He’s the youngest player in the draft and has unusual ball skills and shooting proficiency for someone his size, but he spent the past season in Greece’s second division, which was not a particularly challenging level. His upside is tied more to the splash plays than the productivity, and his physical frailty is a stumbling block for some scouts, as he’ll likely be ill-suited to playing on the interior. He has a clear knack for passing the ball, and there’s potential for his shot-blocking to translate if he adds enough strength, but he also takes a lot of bad shots and may need more time than most to adjust from a physical and competitive perspective. He’s likely to be drafted in the back half of the first round, and the expectation is that he’ll come to the NBA immediately and spend the year taking advantage of the weight room and other resources.
22. Josh Green, G/F, Arizona | Freshman
Height: 6' 6" | Weight: 210 | Age: 19 | Last Rank: 18
Green’s productivity has never consistently matched his potential, but he’s a live body on the wing with a decent all-around skill set, and has a chance to be a useful complementary player. He’s too often passive but has the base athleticism to defend well on the perimeter and should be a passable shooter in time. Green’s length, explosive leaping ability and flashes of playmaking talent add some upside, and while he may never be a very creative player off the dribble, simply learning how to pick his spots better could go a long way. The premium on athletic wings makes him a viable addition in this range, with a decent floor and room to improve.
23. R.J. Hampton, G, New Zealand Breakers
Height: 6' 5" | Weight: 185 | Age: 19 | Last Rank: 19
Hampton remains a likely first-round pick despite having a difficult time in the NBL, with his size and athleticism pointing to some untapped upside. Turning pro early was a challenging adjustment for a player who would have been a high school senior had he not reclassified, and his shooting struggles and average feel were exposed somewhat playing against pros. Hampton fits physically in the NBA, with plus speed for his size, but he’s more combo ball-handler than point guard, and it’s imperative he shoots it better in order to find an off-ball role long-term. He has a ways to go defensively as well, but has the tools to do it. There’s a ton of room for improvement here, but whether that glass is half-full or half-empty is up to the beholder.
24. Nico Mannion, PG, Arizona | Freshman
Height: 6' 3" | Weight: 190 | Age: 19 | Last Rank: 24
Although Mannion didn’t live up to the preseason hype (which wasn’t entirely his fault), he had a decent freshman season and admirably shouldered a large playmaking workload. There are scouts who see him as a long-term backup, and others who see more upside as a fringe starter due to his youth, playmaking and shooting potential. Regardless, that makes him a better value proposition in the 20s. There will always be concerns defensively, and the fact that he didn’t finish well at the rim this season raises some questions. But Mannion’s feel and skill level should enable him to succeed in the right system, and he’s a good decision-maker and underrated athlete with strong intangibles. He’s not as league-ready as some of the other point guards in the draft, but comes with a little extra upside if you’re an optimist.
25. Isaiah Stewart, C, Washington | Freshman
Height: 6' 9" | Weight: 250 | Age: 19 | Last Rank: 25
Stewart was highly productive on a bad Washington team, which didn’t exactly help him from a draft perspective, but he remains appealing to teams due in large part to his motor, energy and work ethic. He has elite length in spite of not being particularly tall for a center and is willing to do the dirty work as a rebounder and defender, some of which was lost in the shuffle due to the Huskies’ 2-3 zone. Stewart sometimes struggles to finish plays and get off clean looks against guys who can counter his size, but there’s optimism that he’ll be able to shoot threes, and he’s not going to require tons of touches to be effective. There’s not star upside here, but the odds are good that Stewart keeps improving and carves out a solid career.
26. Xavier Tillman, C, Michigan State | Junior
Height: 6' 8" | Weight: 245 | Age: 21 | Last Rank: 28
There may not a better big in the draft than Tillman when it comes down to the small details, and his hard-nosed, smart approach to interior play is tailor-made for an NBA role. His strength and balance help compensate for his lack of height, and he should be able to give teams immediate help off the bench with his defensive chops, rebounding, playmaking and screen-setting. Tillman isn’t a great jump shooter, nor is he a particularly skilled scorer, but he does so many other things well that it may not matter a ton. His range starts around here and ends around No. 40, which makes him a strong bet to deliver value.
27. Jahmi’us Ramsey, SG, Texas Tech | Freshman
Height: 6' 4" | Weight: 185 | Age: 19 | Last Rank: 26
Ramsey’s profile is a little more enigmatic than you’d like after a decent but not wholly convincing season at Texas Tech. But he has solid tools and is an interesting upside play in the late first round. Right now, he settles for too many jumpers and gets to the rim less often than you’d think for a guy with his type of strength. If he reverses that trend and embraces the defensive side of the ball, he has a chance to be a useful rotation player, particularly if his three-point shooting (42% on 141 attempts, but 64% from the free throw line) holds up. Ramsey’s not much of a playmaker either and will have to flesh out his skill set beyond simply scoring to make the most of his NBA opportunity.
28. Malachi Flynn, PG, San Diego State | Junior
Height: 6' 1" | Weight: 185 | Age: 22 | Last Rank: 29
San Diego State’s unexpected dominance was due in large part to Flynn, who appears well-suited for an NBA role with his rock-solid guard play. His feel and toughness leave some room for optimism that he can be more than just a great college player, particularly given how good he’s been operating in ball screens, and the fact he can also operate effectively off the catch. Flynn’s perimeter shooting can improve, but he’s dangerous enough to set up the drive, and comfortable finishing with both hands. There are no huge holes in his game, and he offers an appealing degree of floor as a backup guard who can give a team minutes early on, as well as some upside due to his savvy and intangibles.
29. Jaden McDaniels, F, Washington | Freshman
Height: 6' 9" | Weight: 200 | Age: 19 | Last Rank: 27
McDaniels was far more flash than substance this season, but those flashes, given his long frame and ball skills, have always been enough to intrigue scouts. He struggled to string together consistent results at Washington, which wasn’t entirely his fault given the team’s poor guard play, but his slender frame and the fact he managed a negative assist-to-turnover ratio are still detractors. McDaniels is a willing passer and rebounder and has more all-around game than he was able to show. Adding strength and improving his shot selection moving forward is imperative. He’s a project in need of some G League time, ideally, but still a worthwhile flier.
30. Tyler Bey, PF, Colorado | Junior
Height: 6' 7" | Weight: 215 | Age: 22 | Last Rank: 32
Bey offers some real role-player intrigue as a potentially useful big in small-ball lineups, as a high-energy rebounder and play finisher with some untapped ability. He’s not a great shooter, but also not a non-shooter, and he’s athletic enough to defend some wings as well as smaller bigs. Bey may enable his team to play small and fast without commanding touches, and if he’s able to eventually space the floor, it’s not hard to see him having utility off the bench. He’s one of the more unorthodox players in the draft, but it’s hard to see a team taking him without a plan to optimize him accordingly, which bodes well.
31. Jalen Smith, C, Maryland | Sophomore
Height: 6' 10" | Weight: 225 | Age: 20 | Last Rank: 39
Although Smith is likely to be selected in the first round at this point, he’s more of a situational fit on a team in particular need of a floor-spacing big. Optimistically, he fits a useful archetype as a center who can shoot threes and block shots, but his limited mobility and balance may be problematic and hamper his ability to play in traffic. Maryland played a slower pace that insulated Smith in the half-court defensively, but he’ll be asked to defend more in space moving forward, and he doesn’t read and recover all that well when pulled away from the basket. Given his lack of lift in tight spaces and rudimentary finishing skills, Smith will have to improve his shooting enough to make it work as a pick-and-pop five. If it clicks, he has a pathway to utility as a rotational big.
32. Grant Riller, G, Charleston | Senior
Height: 6' 3" | Weight: 190 | Age: 23 | Last Rank: 30
It’s hard to ignore just how good a scorer Riller has been in college, and he’s arguably the best-finishing guard in this draft class, albeit playing mostly against lower-level college competition. His touch around the rim and vertical pop in tight spaces are high-end, and while he’ll be best off paired with a more pass-first guard, Riller shoots and moves the ball well enough that it may work. He’s a little bit one-dimensional and is listed generously at 6’3”, but if he can maintain his impressive efficiency against better competition, he’s talented enough to make an impact right away. His age and limited tools make him more likely to be drafted in the second round, and his toughness should help him stick.
33. Isaiah Joe, SG, Arkansas | Sophomore
Height: 6' 5" | Weight: 180 | Age: 21 | Last Rank: 54
Joe made a last-minute decision to enter the draft after initially opting to stay at Arkansas, which should be a prudent move given the likelihood he gets a guaranteed deal in the second round at worst. While he was injured for a chunk of the season and didn’t shoot as well due to massive three-point volume, it doesn’t take much to see that he’s one of the best pure shooters in the draft. The question is whether he’s more of a one-dimensional specialist, or if he can be more than that. Given the leaguewide premium on players who can space the floor, it’s a reasonable bet that Joe can carve out an NBA role.
34. Desmond Bane, SG, TCU | Senior
Height: 6' 6" | Weight: 215 | Age: 22 | Last Rank: 35
While Bane doesn’t come with a ton of upside—he’s physically maxed out and isn’t a great mover athletically—he might be a pretty useful role player right away. He’s a dangerous shooter with underrated passing skills and a strong frame that should help him stay on the floor defensively, despite not being very quick laterally. The fact that he’s measured with a negative wingspan in the past is going to be a holdup for teams. But Bane knows how to fit in offensively and has a good understanding of who he is as a player, which gives him a fairly good chance of making it all work. His feel and reliable jumper are nice selling points.
35. Vernon Carey Jr., C, Duke | Freshman
Height: 6' 10" | Weight: 270 | Age: 19 | Last Rank: 33
Carey was highly productive as a freshman, and while he’s not where the NBA is headed, his size, strength and rebounding ability should work in his favor. He’s still pretty young, has room to improve his body and has potential to shoot the ball adequately from outside, which could make him a fairly useful player. Carey isn’t especially skilled as a finisher against bodies, and he relies heavily on going to his left hand and drawing contact, which probably limits some of his offensive utility for the time being. Carey blocks shots well within his area, but given his average lateral mobility and length, teams are skeptical as to how well he’ll actually defend in space when opponents inevitably try to make him hedge and recover. Still, there’s time for him to figure it out, and his Duke pedigree should keep him from free falling.
36. Payton Pritchard, PG, Oregon | Senior
Height: 6' 1" | Weight: 195 | Age: 22 | Last Rank: 51
After an impressive four-year run at Oregon, Pritchard’s leadership and moxie have rightfully endeared him to scouts as a potential backup point guard. His age and below-average physical tools are still a holdup for some, but the odds are favorable that he makes a roster next season. Pritchard was one of the most competitive players in college basketball, and while he’s more scorer than playmaker, he’s a good decision-maker who handles pressure situations with poise. He stands out amid a pretty strong group of second-round guards.
37. Immanuel Quickley, SG, Kentucky | Sophomore
Height: 6' 3" | Weight: 190 | Age: 21 | Last Rank: 37
Quickley made a huge leap from his freshman to sophomore year, working himself into a steady player who defends the perimeter, can hit open shots and doesn’t have a glaring hope in his game. He’s not creative offensively and relies a good bit on drawing contact, and also isn’t a high-end athlete, which creates some questions as to what he hangs his hat on beyond catching and shooting in the pros. Quickly also isn’t a particularly inventive passer, and he’ll need to pair with a playmaking guard for best results. But he has a chance to be a low-maintenance role player who adds some value on both ends of the floor, and he’s a solid option in this part of the draft.
38. Jordan Nwora, F, Louisville | Junior
Height: 6' 7" | Weight: 220 | Age: 22 | Last Rank: 38
Although Nwora wasn’t as consistent as he probably should have been last season, he remains one of the best pure shooters in this draft, which shouldn’t be undersold. It’s easy to nitpick the flaws here, as he’s not an elite athlete or great defender, but he’s a solid rebounder with good size, and teams will primarily ask him to space the floor and make simple plays. Some of the issues at Louisville should be mitigated by the fact that defenses won’t be keying on him as much in the NBA. If a team has the framework to cover for Nwora on defense, he’s a strong value play in the early second round. His jumper is worth the gamble.
39. Tre Jones, PG, Duke | Sophomore
Height: 6' 2" | Weight: 185 | Age: 20 | Last Rank: 44
Jones had an excellent sophomore season at Duke and has a chance to make it as a potential NBA backup, bringing strong intangibles and excellent hands and anticipation on defense. He’s deceptively quick, distributes the ball well and plays extremely hard, but scouts are still somewhat split over what his upside actually is. Jones has improved his three-point shooting, which has been his biggest question mark over the past two years, but he’s still not dynamic pulling up off the dribble and will need to become more of a threat to maximize his ability. It’s also possible his lack of size may limit his versatility and effectiveness as a defender to an extent. It’s easy to see him having a real career, but the upside here isn’t immense.
40. Udoka Azubuike, C, Kansas | Senior
Height: 6' 11" | Weight: 275 | Age: 21 | Last Rank: 48
Thanks to his sheer enormity, Azubuike was extremely effective by the end of his Kansas career, and by simple dint of being huge, there may be a place for him as a situational center in the NBA. His strength and massive wingspan are effective deterrents to keep opponents out of the paint, and while he’ll never be able to switch onto guards or play creative coverages, it’s conceivable he could fill a 10-15 minute per-game role on a team that values his rebounding and ability to eat space. Azubuike is an abysmal free throw shooter and his jumper will probably never be a threat, so he kind of is what he is at this point. But with more teams starting to employ a center-by-committee approach, he’s a decent low-cost option and comes with some built-in role clarity.
41. Cassius Winston, PG, Michigan State | Senior
Height: 6' 1" | Weight: 185 | Age: 22 | Last Rank: 41
Winston has undeniable chops as a floor leader, and the hope is that he’ll return closer to his sparkling junior year form moving forward. His body type (and how well it will hold up in the NBA) continues to be an impediment for some scouts, but he’s a great decision-maker and situational scorer with a knack for making positive things happen. Winston profiles well as a backup point guard, but he’s likely to get picked on defensively, and his lack of athletic upside limits the value proposition here. But it won’t be a shocker if he figures out a way to stick as a second-unit playmaker.
42. Devon Dotson, PG, Kansas | Sophomore
Height: 6' 2" | Weight: 180 | Age: 21 | Last Rank: 43
Dotson put together another impressive year at Kansas, but in a potentially point guard-heavy draft, his lack of size and average playmaking ability makes it a bit more likely he ends up in the second round. He’s an exceptional finisher at the rim for a small guard and a tough defender who compensates for lack of length with quick feet and tenacity. But much of his offensive success was predicated on straight-line drives and kick-out passes, and few college players were able to contain him and keep him from getting to his right hand. That style of play will be tested against NBA defenses, and he’s not a great shooter off the dribble. Dotson has a chance to be a useful bench scorer, but the margin for error may be somewhat thin.
43. Robert Woodard, F, Mississippi State | Sophomore
Height: 6' 7" | Weight: 235 | Age: 20 | Last Rank: 52
Skill-wise, Woodard is a project, but he’s a strong, physical defender who can match up on wings and smaller bigs and has some ability to shoot threes. He’s not a particularly consistent player yet and wasn’t heavily featured on offense at Mississippi State, so it’s hard to know exactly what you’re getting with him at this point. Woodard turns 21 this month, is still relatively raw, and may need G League time. His feel and lack of handle may be a long-term issue. But he looks the part (a 7’1” wingspan helps), is known as a hard worker, and should require a relatively minimal investment, with the hope being he can be a low-use two-way role player.
44. Zeke Nnaji, C, Arizona | Freshman
Height: 6' 11" | Weight: 240 | Age: 19 | Last Rank: 31
A physical rebounder who was effective as a freshman relying primarily on his soft touch and opportunistic scoring in the paint, Nnaji brings energy and a little upside, but his physical stiffness, lack of length and limited ball skills are somewhat concerning. He’s a decent shooter who may be able to stretch the floor, but he doesn’t offer much else in terms of offensive growth potential right now, and he may not be able to live off putbacks in the same fashion. Nnaji also struggles to protect the rim and is a bit behind defensively, which may limit his ability to center competent lineups. There’s room for growth here if Nnaji can work himself into a legitimate stretch big, but it’ll take a lot of work to get there.
45. Skylar Mays, G, LSU | Senior
Height: 6' 4" | Weight: 200 | Age: 23 | Last Rank: 42
Mays took a notable leap this season, making real strides in terms of poise and decision-making, and was the only true constant as the leader of an inconsistent LSU team. He can play on the ball but is better suited at the two alongside a true playmaker, which was a luxury the Tigers didn’t really have this year. Mays was superbly efficient anyway, and effective in spite of his average athleticism. He will have to become a more versatile shooter on the move, and finishing might become an issue given he doesn’t get great extension around the basket. But his consistency, intangibles, and well-roundedness make him a second-round option.
46. Cassius Stanley, G/F, Duke | Freshman
Height: 6' 6" | Weight: 195 | Age: 21 | Last Rank: 36
Boasting freak athleticism and a nose for making energy plays, Stanley reinvented himself as a complementary piece at Duke, and may have what it takes to eventually play a similar role at the NBA level. He lacks creativity with the ball and needs shots created for him, but he’s solid in the open floor, has shot well from three, and should be to keep up defensively, although he lacks plus length and his quickness sometimes covers for his mistakes. It’s hard to see Stanley evolving into more than a fifth option offensively, and there’s a chance his lack of dynamism with the ball in his hands ultimately hinders him from being enough of a threat to carve out a serious role on a winning team.
47. Daniel Oturu, C, Minnesota | Sophomore
Height: 6' 9" | Weight: 240 | Age: 20 | Last Rank: 45
Oturu was highly productive this season, but also benefited greatly from being a high-minute, high-volume post player on a team with few consistent offensive options. Projecting forward, the question becomes how valuable he will against better competition if you were to limit his post-up touches and ask him to fill a rim-running role. Oturu is a powerful athlete but lacks the ideal size and skill level for an NBA five, and he can be somewhat of a black hole when catching the ball in the paint. He does have potential to shoot, and if he can space the floor, rebound and finish effectively, he could be a viable option. But the general replaceability of centers and his lack of an elite skill makes him a trickier sell.
48. Paul Reed, F/C, DePaul | Junior
Height: 6' 9" | Weight: 220 | Age: 21 | Last Rank: 46
Reed has an intriguing statistical profile and has some attractive traits as a prospect, but was a bit of mixed bag over the course of the season and played worse down the back stretch, as DePaul descended into mediocrity. Defensively, Reed has a lot to offer in terms of blocking shots, rebounding and impacting plays. But his motor comes and goes, and he can still be prone to fouls and mental mistakes. He’s toolsy, but a little awkward athletically, and he lacks the requisite feel to play much on the perimeter, making him a bit of a narrower lineup fit. Reed’s defensive impact and occasional flashes of brilliance should be enough to get him drafted, but he’s probably more of a project than advertised.
49. Killian Tillie, PF, Gonzaga | Senior
Height: 6' 10" | Weight: 220 | Age: 22 | Last Rank: 47
Tillie’s long list of lower-body injuries has created a level of medical concern that’s hampered his stock as a prospect over the years. But he was almost always effective when healthy, and he might be the most natural shooter of all the bigs in this draft. Granted, his slender body type is a negative, and at this point his frame won’t improve much. He’s not very long and may not be able to add a ton of strength, which will probably limit his contributions to the perimeter. But Tillie’s activity level is solid, his ability to space the floor is legit, and he’s a better athlete than he gets credit for. Tillie is worth a flier if his medical checks out, and in this part of the draft, the risk is mitigated.
50. Sam Merrill, G, Utah State | Senior
Height: 6' 5" | Weight: 205 | Age: 24 | Last Rank: 57
Merrill will turn 24 this month and is absolutely ancient by prospect standards, but given how good he is right now, he’s worth taking seriously. He’s a terrific shooter and a solid passer, and he owns strong career shooting splits as a four-year starter for Utah State. Despite what he lacks athletically, Merrill’s size and ability to play on and off the ball might make him a viable plug-and-play bench guy and potential budget acquisition. There’s not a ton of upside at his age, but the fact that he’s a legit shooter with real auxiliary skills makes him well worth a flier. He’s not a lock to get drafted, but he could be a surprise contributor next season regardless.
51. Mason Jones, SG, Arkansas | Junior
Height: 6' 5" | Weight: 200 | Age: 22 | Last Rank: 69
After entering the year off the radar, Jones led the SEC in scoring while given total freedom to jack shots in an up-tempo offense. He profiles well statistically after his year at Arkansas and offers some intrigue as a late-blooming prospect who’s taken a circuitous route to this point. The primary issue here is he’s not a great athlete and is a ball-dominant scorer who relies on drawing fouls and attacking the rim, with just an average jump shot. If you buy his efficiency translating, it’s not an issue, but it’s hard to think the game will suddenly come easier to him. But Jones has certainly played his way into draftability with a huge season and has some sleeper intrigue in the second round.
52. Markus Howard, G, Marquette | Senior
Height: 5' 11" | Weight: 175 | Age: 21 | Last Rank: 72
After four straight prolific, mostly efficient seasons as one of college basketball’s elite scoring guards, Howard doesn’t have much left to prove—we know he can make shots, and his NBA future is primarily a question of whether he can survive defensively. His limited size and length make that a tricky proposition, but on the off-chance that reduced offensive usage allows him to expend more energy fighting on the other end, Howard is well worth a shot, as a career 42.7% shooter from three-point range. He can make tough shots and has enough vision to make plays in a pinch. If he buys into a smaller role, there could be a place for him.
53. Kaleb Wesson, C, Ohio State | Junior
Height: 6' 9" | Weight: 270 | Age: 21 | Last Rank: 50
Wesson put together a strong year after slimming down in the offseason. He anchored Ohio State’s offense admirably with his post play, perimeter shooting and above-average passing skills. While he’s still somewhat inconsistent and isn’t much of a rim protector given his size and limited verticality, his skill level and consistent jumper are still notable. He’s a high-level passer for his position, but there are very few bigs worth playing through at the NBA level, so he’s probably better suited as a short-roll and high ball-screen player. Ideally, Wesson will pair with a more mobile frontcourt player who can cover for him at the rim. But in the right system, he has a chance to stick.
54. Ashton Hagans, PG, Kentucky | Sophomore
Height: 6' 3" | Weight: 190 | Age: 21 | Last Rank: 55
Hagans’s stock slipped as his play turned down over the back part of the year at Kentucky, and his individual struggles to score the ball became more pronounced. Winning intangibles and strong defensive instincts helped Hagans get on the radar, but there’s still a degree of hesitance surrounding his jump shot, and questions about what caliber of passer he is. He’s tenacious and disruptive on the ball and in the passing lanes and has the size and toughness that make his weaknesses more palatable. The fact that he’s a strong free throw shooter helps leave room for optimism that his jumper eventually will come along. But he’ll likely need seasoning in the G League in the short-term to refine his decision-making.
55. Reggie Perry, F/C, Mississippi State | Sophomore
Height: 6' 10" | Weight: 250 | Age: 20 | Last Rank: 68
Perry has great physical tools and has been highly productive the past two seasons, but he lacks the level of feel and on-court awareness that would make him a surefire draftable player. He did earn a combine invite last season and has some fans around the league, but his shot selection and consistency have always left something to be desired, and his struggles also persist on the defensive end in terms of positioning and impact. He’s shown potential to shoot and has the type of frame teams like to gamble on. But he’s looking at a second-round selection as things stand.
56. Naji Marshall, G/F, Xavier | Junior
Height: 6' 7" | Weight: 220 | Age: 22 | Last Rank: 59
An intriguing late-draft flyer, Marshall is a good athlete with the capacity to handle and play-make, and he had a lot of offensive responsibility at Xavier. He can be mistake-prone and is a spotty shooter, but his productivity, toughness and size on the wing are all positives. He still struggles with shot selection, and transitioning away from playing on the ball into a complementary role might be a challenge. But at worst, he’s an intriguing candidate for a two-way contract.
57. Elijah Hughes, G/F, Syracuse | Junior
Height: 6' 6" | Weight: 215 | Age: 22 | Last Rank: 63
Hughes supplies just enough scoring, playmaking and shooting on the wing to think there’s an outside chance he can crack a roster next season. He’s not elite in any one area, and it’s tricky to assess him defensively in Syracuse’s zone, but Hughes is a solid athlete and finds ways to impact the game in beyond scoring. He’s a streaky shooter and isn’t big for his position, but in a more complementary role, he could feasibly be a bench piece somewhere. Hughes is an intriguing two-way contract candidate or second-round option.
58. Paul Eboua, F/C, Pesaro
Height: 6' 8" | Weight: 215 | Age: 20 | Last Rank: 64
Elite physical tools alone make Eboua a potential second-round stash candidate as a powerful, athletic frontcourt piece worth developing in case his skill set ever clicks. Scouts question how good his feel for the game is, and his ideal long-term role might be at center, where his athletic advantage might create mismatches against slower bigs. Eboua’s ability to rim-run and beat basically anyone up and down the floor is noteworthy. In an energy role, it’s possible he’ll eventually succeed, but his feel and ball skills aren’t great. His highlights tend to mask his overall poor efficiency, and he’s an inconsistent jump shooter who will need time to grow into a more confined role.
59. Yam Madar, PG, Hapoel Tel Aviv
Height: 6' 3" | Weight: 180 | Age: 19 | Last Rank: NR
Madar is a scrappy defender and opportunistic scorer who boosted his stock to an extent in the Israeli League playoffs and should be a potential stash option in the second round. He’s a mature player for his age and is still relatively young, which gives him time to iron out some of his tendencies.
60. Jalen Harris, SG, Nevada | Junior
Height: 6' 5” | Weight: 195 | Age: 21 | Last Rank: 60
An appealing athlete with some juice off the dribble, Harris had a big first year at Nevada after transferring from Louisiana Tech and sitting out a season. While his game is ball-dominant and occasionally a bit wild, Harris’s athleticism and scoring instincts are impressive. He takes and makes a lot of tough shots, but will have to pick his spots better to succeed in the pros. As far as scoring is concerned, he’s a viable second-round option. But Harris will have to figure out what else he can bring to the table as a role player.
61. Ty-Shon Alexander, SG, Creighton | Junior
Height: 6' 4” | Weight: 195 | Age: 22 | Last Rank: NR
Alexander had a nice year at Creighton and opted to ride the wave into draft-eligibility, and while he’s not a lock to get picked, he’s a good three-point shooter (particularly off the catch) and competes defensively. The versatility here is somewhat limited, as he’s not particularly comfortable playing off the dribble and his shooting mechanics are a bit arduous, but he has a good frame for his role, can make jumpers off movement, and has a pathway to being a playable bench guard if it all translates.
62. Abdoulaye N’Doye, G/F, Cholet
Height: 6' 7” | Weight: 185 | Age: 22 | Last Rank: 71
N’Doye is intriguing from an athletic perspective, with a long frame and some role versatility, although scouts remain skeptical about the quality of his offensive feel, and his inability to handle a significant offensive role playing in France. He does have elite length, and the agility to match up on a variety of opponents, and he’s managed a career best 42% from three this season, albeit on a relatively meaningless 35 attempts. But there’s enough feasible upside here to think someone might stash him in the second round. He’s been something of a tease for scouts in the past with his build and flashes of playmaking, and there’s a reason the needle has never really moved.
63. Josh Hall, SF, Moravian Prep | HS Senior
Height: 6' 8” | Weight: 190 | Age: 19 | Last Rank: 49
A Top-50 high school recruit who was previously committed to NC State, Hall declared for the draft after taking a prep year (he turns 20 in October) and appears set on turning pro. Factoring in his immediately evident long-term potential as well as his limited NBA exposure, Hall is one of the more enigmatic prospects in the draft, but certainly worth taking seriously as a second-round flier. There’s limited film available on him, but he offers a tantalizing combination of guard skills and shooting potential at 6’8”. Granted, that’s a bit of a boom-or-bust archetype, and he’s not a great athlete or playmaker. But at a certain point in the draft, Hall might be worth the gamble for a team that’s done the proper homework.
64. Trevelin Queen, G/F, New Mexico State | Senior
Height: 6' 6” | Weight: 190 | Age: 23 | Last Rank: 67
After losing time to injuries the past couple years and taking a bit of a roundabout path to New Mexico State, Queen has somewhat of an incomplete body of work at low levels of basketball, but his versatility and feel on the wing are intriguing enough to make him a candidate for an undrafted deal or second-round flier. Queen is a solid catch-and-shoot player with decent ball skills and above-average passing feel. His instincts are sound on both ends of the floor, albeit he’s already 23. While there’s not a lot of upside baked in here, nor is there a particularly useful statistical track record, there’s some 3-and-D potential here on the cheap.
65. Trent Forrest, G, Florida State | Senior
Height: 6' 4” | Weight: 210 | Age: 22 | Last Rank: NR
One of the top guard defenders in the ACC, Forrest had an underappreciated career at Florida State, and his strength and toughness should give him a chance at long-term success. The glaring red flag here is that he’s a 24.8% career three-point shooter and took just 109 of them in four seasons. If Forrest can display some real growth in that department — likely in the G League — he has enough all-around game to stick on an NBA roster and help someone’s bench. But if he doesn’t shoot, it’s tough to see him succeeding.
66. Myles Powell, SG, Seton Hall | Senior
Height: 6' 1” | Weight: 200 | Age: 23 | Last Rank: 66
Powell was one of the more prolific scorers in college basketball the past two seasons and is an elite catch-and-shoot threat who has worked hard to maximize his talent. How that translates into an NBA role is less clear, given he’s not great with the ball in his hands and doesn’t have ideal size for his skill set. But his shooting percentages should climb when defenses can’t key as heavily on him, and his overall feel is pretty solid, making him a potential specialist if he starts knocking down threes at a better clip. He just had the worst year of his career in terms of shooting splits, but is also handling extreme volume on a team that lacks other consistent scoring options. Whether he can succeed with his combination of body type and skill set is worth nitpicking, but Powell is the type of guy you want to bet on.
67. Nathan Knight, C, William and Mary | Senior
Height: 6' 10” | Weight: 255 | Age: 22 | Last Rank: 70
After an excellent, stat-stuffing career at William and Mary, Knight has some intriguing talent but isn’t exactly an eye-test guy, with an average build that’s been a hang-up for NBA scouts. Knight has terrific natural touch in the paint and has developed three-point range, but given he was so post-up dependent in a small conference, it’s hard to know how well he’ll translate into a role when he’s not an offensive focal point. He’s a good but not great athlete and doesn’t really play much above the rim. But given his statistical profile, Knight is an interesting candidate for a two-way deal.
68. Nate Hinton, G/F, Houston | Sophomore
Height: 6' 5” | Weight: 210 | Age: 21 | Last Rank: 75
Hinton has an intriguing base skill set for a 3-and-D prospect, as a rangy defender and appealing athlete who covers ground well and can knock down open shots. He’s not dynamic with the ball and won’t be much of a creator, but he’s a solid rebounder and willing glue guy who went somewhat unnoticed on a pretty solid Houston team. Hinton’s ability to add value without scoring is a start, but his somewhat limited body of work in college is a short-term detriment to his résumé. But as a budget three-and-D type, he’s a nice undrafted flier.
69. C.J. Elleby, G/F, Washington State | Sophomore
Height: 6' 6” | Weight: 200 | Age: 20 | Last Rank: 62
Elleby is a talented scorer who had a lot of freedom on a bad Washington State team the last couple years, and can look like a totally different player from game to game. When his three-point shot is falling, Elleby is somewhat tantalizing, despite less-than-ideal mechanics (he shoots left-handed, but brings the ball up from the right side of his body). He’s athletic and was pretty productive the past couple of years, but in losing situations. Right now, his game isn’t really geared toward making others better, and he’s not likely to keep scoring at this type of clip in the pros. He’s a solid candidate for a two-way deal and has some evident potential, but his style of play will require some adjustments.
70. Nick Richards, C, Kentucky | Junior
Height: 6' 11” | Weight: 250 | Age: 22 | Last Rank: 76
After two disappointing years, Richards finally stepped up this season and gave Kentucky a huge boost with his activity and energy around the rim. He’s a good athlete and solid rim protector who has figured out how to impact games as a finisher without needing his number called. Most scouts still question whether his feel is good enough to succeed in the NBA, and he’s not elite in any one area. But if he stays on this positive trajectory, there’s an outside chance he can work himself into an end-of-bench center. The fact Richards is already 22 doesn’t help, but as a late bloomer to begin with, he deserves a chance to keep figuring it out.
71. Vit Krejci, G, Zaragoza
Height: 6' 8” | Weight: 195 | Age: 20 | Last Rank: NR
Krejci had a solid showing at Basketball Without Borders camp in 2018, and the Czech guard earned some limited run in the ACB with Zaragoza’s senior team this season. His size, craftiness and playmaking ability are all intriguing, and he should be an interesting stash option if he stays in the draft. Big guards with passing feel aren’t always easy to find, and Krejci is far from a finished product, but his all-around game is still somewhat interesting. He may not have enough momentum to make it worth staying in the draft, but there are worse stash options.
72. Malik Fitts, F, St. Mary’s | Junior
Height: 6' 8” | Weight: 230 | Age: 23 | Last Rank: 78
The versatility Fitts offers as a potential floor-spacing four-man has some intrigue, and while he’s not high-end athletic, he’s been productive the past couple seasons. Fitts has proven he can hit shots, rebound, and stay active defensively, but he’s a bit of a tweener given he’s not dynamic with the ball on the wing, and doesn’t hold up quite as well against bigger players defensively. The lack of playmaking and verticality here is concerning, though his feel is otherwise solid. If Fitts can defend both forward spots capably, hit open shots and blend in, he makes sense on a two-way contract.
73. Mamadi Diakite, F/C, Virginia | Senior
Height: 6' 9” | Weight: 225 | Age: 23 | Last Rank: 80
Diakite is a known quantity at this point after playing four years for a highly successful Virginia program, and he handled a much bigger offensive role for the first time this season. He can shoot a little bit, but isn’t great in any one area, and his post-up touches aren’t likely to translate up a level. So his real value will have to come defensively, where he’s solid around the rim despite not being particularly big for his position, and has pretty solid timing. Diakite isn’t spectacular, but at least he knows how to fit into a role. On the off chance he can center smaller lineups, Diakite is a decent undrafted target.
74. Jay Scrubb, SG, John Logan JC | Sophomore
Height: 6' 6” | Weight: 215 | Age: 20 | Last Rank: 74
After putting up big scoring numbers in junior college, Scrubb opted to enter the draft rather than attend Louisville, a decision that didn’t come with any real guarantee he’d be drafted. On one hand, you respect players betting on themselves, but Scrubb is a JUCO scorer with JUCO habits, as a big, ball-dominant, offense-only scorer who will have to keep proving himself. Athletic guys his size who can create shots are often afforded added opportunity, and he should end up on a two-way contract at worst. But Scrubb has a ways to go still.
75. Jordan Ford, PG, St. Mary’s | Senior
Height: 6' 1” | Weight: 175 | Age: 22 | Last Rank: NR
Ford flew somewhat under the radar as one of college basketball’s elite scorers the past couple years, combining heavy volume and strong efficiency in convincing fashion. The issue is that he’s small and extremely slight, but his pull-up game and ability to create space for himself off the dribble are serious, and if he doesn’t make the NBA, he should be a star overseas. He may not supply enough complementary skills to stick as a backup point guard, but Ford is talented enough that it’s worth bringing him to camp and finding out.
76. Austin Wiley, C, Auburn | Junior
Height: 6' 11” | Weight: 260 | Age: 21 | Last Rank: NR
A modern NBA center, Wiley is not. But he’s massive and one of college basketball’s elite rebounders when healthy, which shouldn’t be discounted for teams looking to audition players for a center-by-committee system. If he can stay in shape and keep his health issues in the past, Wiley has a shot to succeed as a situational bruiser off the bench. He probably is what he is, but that could be a useful player, particularly on an inexpensive deal.
77. Kahlil Whitney, SF, Kentucky | Freshman
Height: 6' 6” | Weight: 210 | Age: 19 | Last Rank: 77
Whitney struggled to find any type of foothold at Kentucky (he scored in double figures just once in 18 appearances), and lost much of his shine as a former five-star prospect. He seems more likely a priority undrafted type than a surefire second-round flier based off his appealing tools, but disastrous freshman season. Whitney has a great basketball body and simply has not had a ton of structure and development to this point, so there’s obviously untapped upside here. But teams will have to feel secure in his ability to handle the adversity that’s inevitably coming, and he’ll have to be prepared for a year or two in the G League.
78. Saben Lee, G, Vanderbilt | Junior
Height: 6' 2” | Weight: 185 | Age: 22 | Last Rank: NR
Although he’s a bit of a loose cannon on offense, Lee’s athleticism and ability to attack the rim hold a level of intrigue, and he’s an interesting developmental target in hopes he takes a big leap in a better situation. Lee was a three-year starter for three bad Vanderbilt teams, and his ability to see the floor and make decisions leaves something to be desired. The hope is that a better situation covers for some of his flaws, but as a shoot-first guard who’s always needed the ball, it may take quite a transformation for him to succeed.
79. Rayshaun Hammonds, PF, Georgia | Junior
Height: 6' 9” | Weight: 235 | Age: 21 | Last Rank: NR
An offense-first big with a fairly decent skill set, Hammonds didn’t grab many headlines at Georgia but profiles as an interesting sleeper in the right situation. Although he can be a bit of a black hole on offense, Hammonds has shown some ability to shoot from outside and playmake from the elbows, which makes for an intriguing combination of skills for a big who’s likely to go undrafted. He’s not likely to protect the rim much, but his productivity and scoring talent are worth a shot on the cheap.
80. Kenyon Martin Jr., F, IMG Academy
Height: 6' 6” | Weight: 215 | Age: 19 | Last Rank: NR
After initially committing to Vanderbilt, Martin did a prep year at IMG Academy with the intention of turning pro and skipping college. It’s unclear if he’ll actually get drafted, but he’s a freakish athlete with some shooting ability who may have to play as an uber-small big long-term. Martin has tried to transition to the perimeter, but with mixed results, and making the most of his energy and toughness on the interior might be the optimal pathway to a roster spot. He’s still raw and is a long ways off, but with NBA bloodlines and explosive leaping ability, he should end up on a two-way deal.
Prevously ranked players returning to college: Jared Butler (34), Corey Kispert (39), Joel Ayayi (53), Aaron Henry (56), Colbey Ross (58), Ayo Dosunmu (61), Yves Pons (65).